There are two types: Continuous and Strobe. Continuous lights work as regular lamps do, yet they are far more powerful. The extra wattage available is necessary because they are used to light entire scenes in some cases. Strobe lights work just as the smaller external flashes do. Although strobes are powerful, the wattage can be adjusted and the harsh light can be controlled more effectively by the position of the light itself.
Studio lights are generally used for more traditional portraits or shoots for magazine covers. The level of creativity is increased because of the number of lights available. For example, lights set at a higher wattage can lighten a dull background while a low-wattage bulb can add a softer light on the subject. With careful planning and the right type of lighting, you can achieve the look needed for any shoot.
Studio lights are more expensive. Kits can include three to five lights, if not more. The equipment overall is heavy and less mobile, requiring you to use a small generator if photos need to be shot away from electrical outlets. These lights also run extremely hot. Special gloves must be worn to reposition light heads once they have been in use for a short time.