With the final phase of a ban on traditional light bulbs coming into effect in Britain, retailers would no longer be able to order new stock.
Consumers would no longer be able to buy 40W and 25W bulbs in the final stage of a phased programme that started in 2009 and has already seen 100W and 60W bulbs phased out.
The EU directive comes as part of a wider effort to lower the energy consumption of products and incandescent bulbs are being targeted as they waste 95 per cent of energy used as heat.
According to Defra, the technology, had not changed for over 100 years and there were much more efficient alternatives available.
Some people would be expected to avoid the ban by seeking out "rough service" lightbulbs, similar to traditional bulbs but designed to be more robust for industrial use. The rough service bulbs were legal due to a loophole in the EU legislation which only referred to "household lamps".
A number of retailers, particularly hardware stores, were selling rough service bulbs online. Householders have however, been warned by the National Measurement Office, the government agency responsible for enforcing the ban on traditional bulbs, against buying the rough service versions.