Luminance Contrast and Compliance in stair nosings

Luminance contrast is the percentage of light reflected off two adjacent surfaces.

What is meant by luminance Contrast in stair nosings?

Luminance Contrast and Compliance in Stair Nosings. Why 30%?

Luminance contrast is a value given to a surface to indicate how much light is reflected of two adjacent surfaces.

Surfaces could include:

  • Concrete
  • Ceramics
  • Terrazzo
  • Asphalt
  • Bricks
  • Pavers
  • Carpet


30% Contrast and compliance in stair nosing.

It is recommended that there is a contrast of some 30% between 2 adjacent surfaces.

For example, a colour with an LRV of 60 (which means it reflects 60% of the light that falls on it) will reflect more light than that of a colour with an LRV of 30. There would be a contrast difference of 30%.

Consistent light that is bounced off a surface is called “regular reflection”

Luminance contrast

LRVs are marked on a scale of 1 to 100 depending on the percentage of light reflected. Dark, matt and/or textured surfaces absorb a large amount of light and, therefore, have low reflectance values.

On the other hand, light, glossy and/or smooth surfaces reflect most of the light that falls on them and have high reflectance values.

Luminance Contrast stair nosings