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Why are Convex Mirrors Used in Shops


We’ve all seen convex mirrors mounted on the ceilings and in the corners of shops and other retail premises. So why do shops use them and what benefits do they provide?

Convex Security Mirrors

Convex mirrors are sometimes called diverging mirrors, fisheye mirrors or dome mirrors. The reflective surface bulges outwards toward the light source which results in a distorted image but an expanded field of view. It is this wide-angle field of view which makes convex mirrors highly suitable for security applications in shops and retail premises.

Appropriately located convex security mirrors provide the ability to literally see around corners which is enormously valuable when your aim is to protect your shop from thieves.

relection in convex mirror

Why Convex Mirrors are Used in Shops?

It can be very difficult to deter and prevent shoplifting, but convex security mirrors provide a very low cost and highly effective security and anti-theft solution. Alternative options would be to ensure there are enough shop staff to monitor every shop visitor or to widely deploy security cameras. Both of these solutions are more costly and possibly less effective.

Shop convex mirror

By carefully selecting and installing appropriate convex security mirrors a single member of staff will often be able to effectively monitor all shopping aisles directly from the till position. And when staff are away from the till position a well placed convex security mirror will allow them to keep an eye on the till while they deal with other responsibilities. What’s more, the visible presence of convex security mirrors acts as a highly effective deterrent to any opportunist, would-be shoplifters.

Retail Security Mirror Types

Retail security mirrors are available in various styles and sizes to suit all possible applications. Key differences include the fields of view, the maximum viewing distances along with the materials used to manufacture them and their mountings.

For example, rectangular convex retail security mirrors are available in sizes up to 1 metre in width providing a maximum viewing distance of 30 metres. Smaller, circular convex security mirrors with a diameter of just 300mm offer maximum viewing distances of just 2 to 3 metres.

Dome Mirrors

Wide angle ceiling dome mirrors are sometimes called hemispherical mirrors because they resemble half of a sphere. Mounted on or from a ceiling they offer a full 360 degree view making them ideal for installation in the middle of a shop or retail space. By looking in the security mirror shop staff are able to easily monitor people browsing and any would-be shoplifters will be deterred by the prominent presence of a ceiling dome mirror.

dome mirror - vertical mount

Half Dome Mirrors

Half dome mirrors are half the size of hemispheric dome mirrors and provide a 180 degree field of view. They are typically mounted between walls and ceilings in retail premises. Mounted in these locations they enable shop staff to easily monitor customers to prevent shoplifting.

half dome mirror

Quarter Dome Mirrors

Quarter dome security mirrors are half the size of half dome mirrors. By strategically mounting these mirrors in the corners of retail premises, between they ceiling and two walls, shop staff can easily watch what shop visitors are doing and prevent theft.

quarter dome mirror

Selecting the Right Security Mirrors for Your Shop

Poor shop security can be an invitation to shoplifters who will repeatedly target retail premises where it is known that security is weak. Convex shop security mirrors provide a very cost effective solution but it’s important to carry out a little planning before investing in some security mirrors.

Convex security mirrors are available in a variety of sizes and styles. Rectangular convex retail security mirrors are a popular choice for many shops and a carefully considered combination of various convex mirror styles and sizes will provide maximum visibility and security.

rectangular retail mirror image

Mirror Types and Locations

It’s important to consider exactly what the installation of convex retail security mirrors is intended to achieve. Typical aims include:

  • To enable existing shop staff to monitor visitors from the till position in order to detect shoplifting.
  • To allow shop staff to watch the till position from other locations in the store.
  • To deter would-be shoplifters by presenting highly visible security precautions.

As noted, convex security mirrors have optimum viewing distances so the size of the retail premises and the distances between the viewing position and the proposed mirror locations is important.

It is recommended that a plan view of the shop layout is used to determine exactly which styles and sizes of convex security mirrors are needed and where they would be optimally located to provide the required coverage.

Mirror Materials

An important consideration which mustn’t be overlooked is the choice of mirror materials. Convex security mirrors are typically manufactured from robust polycarbonate which is virtually unbreakable and 200 times stronger than glass.

If it is essential that shop security mirrors are entirely unbreakable then it’s important to select mirrors which are made from unbreakable Polymir or stainless steel.

Here at Insight Security we are always ready to help with your security issues. Call us on 01273 475500 for free help and advice.


This message was added on Thursday 26th September 2019

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