Lastolite Skylite Reflector & Diffuser Kit Review

The Skylite is panel system for reflection and diffusion for outdoor photoshoots. The kits consist of a frame, handle, light stand adapter, double-sided reflector fabric, diffusion fabric and a carry bag. There’s 3 different sizes, 1x1m, 1x2m and 2x2m with a selection of reflector colours. I bought 2 1x2m kits with the sunfire and silver reflectors.

The main use of the skylite is controlling available light on-location. The diffuser can be used to soften harsh sunlight and give a cool shaded effect, and the reflector is used to fill in flattering light, even on full length portraits. The diffuser alone allows you to create a very soft commercial look but combined with different sun angles and reflectors you can get very creative for fashion looks.

The frame is made of lightweight aluminium, in 6 sections with elastic string holding them in order (a bit like a tent frame). The fabric attaches with velcro over all the edges to keep it tight. The handle attaches across the frame easily and the light stand bracket fits onto the edge of the frame and the angle can be adjusted to sit on top of a light stand. It take a couple of minutes to put together, and although you can do it by yourself it’s much easier with 2 people. When using a panel on stands, sandbags are essential otherwise the wind will really take it away!

My favourite setup is having the model’s back to the sun, with the diffuser to give a nice soft rim, then the sunfire reflector at the front giving a warm bright fill light.

Some people use the panels to diffuse or reflect strobe lighting, but for my purposes I would rather use a softbox.

Pros:

  • Lightweight solid build
  • Wide range of setups and uses
  • Battle harsh lighting conditions

Cons:

  • Aiming and holding a reflector panel is very very difficult without an assistant
  • Each kit only comes with 1 bracket, you really need 2 to hold a panel up securely

The skylite system has become an essential part of my location equipment, for both fashion and commercial photography. It’s flexible and really helps turn challenging light into flattering light.