White noise is considered one of the most effective ways to soothe and prolong baby’s sleep. The womb is a very loud place and it is a big adjustment for babies to be brought to our “quiet and peaceful” world. My first baby was extremely fussy and a friend suggested white noise to help him sleep longer. I didn’t have any sound machines in the house and decided to use my husband’s electric shaver that had vibration sounds. I was amazed at how well he responded to it. The crying and fussiness would immediately stop every time he heard the vibration and static noise produced by the device. When we had our second baby, I decided to buy a baby sound machine. I did a lot of research and found out there are several sound devices in the market that not only include white noise, but also sounds of the womb, nature sounds, and soothing melodies. After reading a lot of reviews, talking to other moms, and testing some of the machines, here are the top 5 white noise machines that I recommend.
The First Years Sounds for Silence Premium Sound Machine
This machine includes custom sounds developed by pediatrician Harry Zehnwirth. It is easy to use and its compact size makes it very portable. The machine includes two sound settings (calming sounds or white noise), an MP3 hookup for custom music, nightlight, and the option for continuous play or auto-off timer. It also comes with Dr. Zehnwirth’s Baby Settling & Health Guide (a 120-page book). Price: $39.99
Dexbaby Sound Sleeper
The Sound Sleeper has a combine mode to layer sounds and can play up to 34 sound combinations including sounds of the womb and a variety of nature sounds. This sound machine has a 60-minute timer, high-quality speaker, and volume that can be adjusted. Its compact size makes for easy travel and storage. Price: $29.99
Homedics SoundSpa Lullaby Sounds & Projection
The SoundSpa Lullaby is more than a sound machine, it is also a rotating picture projector (on wall or ceiling) with 3 image disks: jungle, starry night, and ocean. It has 3 soothing natural sounds (heartbeat, rain & ocean) and 3 tender lullabies. The sounds can be set to a timer and shut off automatically after 15, 30, 45 or 60 minutes. Price: $24.99
If you are looking for a simple high quality white noise machine, the Dohm is a great option. Developed almost 50 years ago, the Dohm creates the soothing sound of rushing air (white noise) that effectively blocks noises at a broad range of frequencies. It features dual speeds, high and low, allowing for greater flexibility in achieving your perfect tone and volume settings. It is compact and especially great for travel (it will block noises in hotels and help baby sleep longer). Price: $54.95
Brookstone Tranquil Moments
This sound machine was developed in collaboration with Dr. Jeffrey Thompson of the Center for Neuroacoustic Research and includes 6 relaxation sounds (lullaby, dolphin, car ride, heartbeat, white noise, and prenatal). It also includes an exclusive sleep enhancement technology that gradually slows playback speed of each sound program over a 20-minute period and a gradual-off volume control that decreases volume during the last 10 minutes of a selected program. The machine has a continuous play option and a timer that can be set to shut off after 30, 60, or 90 minutes. Price: $69.99
If you are looking for a plush stuffed animal that has a baby sound machine built into it, we have a few recommendations. We like the Cloud B Sleep Sheep Smart Sensor, which has 4 soothing sounds and a sound-activated sensor. We also like the Prince Lionheart Slumber Bear that includes an actual intra-uterine, recorded womb sound and sound/motion sensors. Another great plush bear is the Dexbaby Womb Sound Bear that also recreates womb sounds with adjustable volume.