The Best Sound Machines for Children, Travelers, and Everyone in Between

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Whether it's a snoring partner, noisy neighbors, or a pet that loves to explore in the middle of the night, there are seemingly endless noises that can keep us from getting the nightly sleep that we desperately need. Fortunately, the invention of sound machines means that you don't need to break up with your snoring partner to finally catch some z's.

This simple device can work wonders at drowning out the sounds that would ordinarily keep you up at night. And not only do they block out noises, but studies suggest that sound machines can also help you achieve deeper sleep and potentially improve your memory.

Of course, some sound machines are definitely better than others, so we rounded up the best of the best to help you get the nightly sleep you deserve.

Best Overall: Snooz Sound Machine

This sleek little sound machine is designed with a proprietary fan impeller inside of an acoustically optimized case that produces non-looping, soothing white noise all night long. The device allows you to adjust the sound's tone, ranging from the sound of a small tabletop fan to a deep drone akin to the sound of an airplane cabin. Even better, it comes with an easy-to-navigate companion app that allows you to control the device's volume and power without getting up from the comfort of your bed. And its energy-efficient design uses 98% less energy than the average box fan, so you can save some money on your monthly energy bills while being kind to Mother Nature.

Best for Traveling: HoMedics Portable Sound Machine

Measuring just over 4 inches in diameter, you can easily slip this portable sound machine into your carry-on, making it the perfect companion for noisy hotel rooms. You can choose from five different sounds, like White Noise, Thunderstorm, and Rain, in addition to three different guided meditations, so it's a great option no matter your sound preferences. It also comes with a built-in sleep timer that you can set for 30, 60, or 90 minutes, or you can let it go the whole night. Plus, its USB charging capabilities mean that you can put it anywhere in the room while resting assured that it will retain its charge for 12 full hours.

Best for Children: Hatch Baby Sound Machine

Grown-ups aren't the only ones who benefit from sound machines; babies love 'em too. And parents die for this multifunctional device that combines a sound machine, nightlight, and time-to-rise alert in a neat little package. You can use its companion app to control factors like the color and brightness of its light, the type of sound, and the volume, all without having to step into your child's room and potentially wake them up. It also lets you play music with a fun little color show, helping your child build positive associations with bedtime, and its time-to-rise function will gently let older children know when it's time to get out of bed.

Most Features: Adaptive Sound High-Fidelity Sound Machine

When sleep is extremely tough to come by, you need to bring in a heavy hitter like this device, which offers 64 immersive, non-repeating sounds to promote deeper sleep and relaxation. You can choose from nature sounds, like ocean waves, a thunderstorm, or a rainforest, or keep it simple with white noise, depending on your preferences. The smart device also listens to your environment, adjusting its volume automatically based on how noisy it is, and allows you to set a sleep timer ranging from 30-120 minutes or all-night play. And if that isn't enough, it also features an audio port, so you can connect it to your headphones if your partner doesn't share your love of sound machines.


Kelly is a full-time freelance writer, aspiring aerialist, and passionate interior design enthusiast. She's a regular contributor to design-centric publications like Apartment Therapy, The Spruce, and TexasLiving Magazine.

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