Best Soothers and Sound Machines for Babies

Shhh...baby is asleep! Sound and white noise machines are a must-have for little ones and light sleepers. They're an excellent tool to help develop sleeping routines and provide soothing sounds while blocking loud noises to quietly calm your child. Backed by pediatricians and certified sleep specialists, the benefit of introducing a sound machine early on to your infant is to create a, "womb-like white noise that actually activates a calming reflex in the baby, which helps promote sleep," says Dr. Harvey Karp, founder of Happiest Baby and creator of the SNOO Smart Sleeper. "It also reduces waking from outside distractions like noises and lights and internal disturbances like gas and mild hunger."

When shopping for the best machine, parents should be on the lookout for a unit that blocks disturbing sounds, especially during naptime. "Sound machines help drown out the noise we can't control, this is especially important during the daytime when most outside noises occur (i.e. cars driving by, dogs barking etc)," observes Certified Child Sleep Consultant Susete Pinto. However, doctors and sleep professionals caution against keeping a loud sound machine near your sleeping baby. Always maintain the noise levels at 50 A-weighted decibels while never keeping the device too close to the crib. "I generally recommend a noise level similar to what a hair dryer or vacuum might produce," say Dr. Karp.

Sweet as a lullaby and the best method for blocking out boisterous household and outdoor noises, our top picks of sound machines will work to calm even the most restless little sleepers. Get ready to make some noise! Wait, on second thought, let's sound off on comforting white noises to soothe your sweet babe.

Hatch Baby Rest Night Light and Sound Machine photo

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Hatch Baby Rest Night Light and Sound Machine

"When purchasing a sound machine, parents should look for one that has a constant, static sound similar to the Hatch Baby Rest TV setting," suggests Hatch Baby Certified Sleep Expert Nicole Cannon, BA. "White noise or pink noise is beneficial to a child's bedtime routine because it acts as a cue that signals sleep time as well as providing a repetitive, even-toned sound that helps children fall asleep." Mom and dad can control this multifunctional Hatch Baby Rest Night Light and Sound Machine from a cell phone. Fully customizable to your child's sleep schedule, parents can select from several sound and color choices to promote healthy sleep patterns. The unit, which comes with 11 soothing sound options, also has a light setting for bedtime and another for morning to alert toddlers that it's time to get out of bed. This sound machine is designed for continued use as your child grows older. ($60; amazon.com)

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HoMedics Portable SoundSpa photo

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Homedics Portable SoundSpa

"White noise machines are fantastic for young children because they create a very calming and soothing sleep environment," says Certified Toddler Sleep Specialist, Eva Klein, JD. "I recommend parents continue to use white noise machines for toddlers because many toddlers are still sensitive to background noise. Plus, they often have wild imaginations and might feel scared around bedtime and nighttime." This lightweight HoMedics Portable SoundSpa is great for helping little ones settle down with five nature sounds and a white noise setting along with a timer that can be configured for continuous play. It can be used with an enclosed adaptor or with batteries. ($25; amazon.com)

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Marpac Hushh White Noise Sound Machine for Baby photo

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Marpac Hushh White Noise Sound Machine for Baby

"Parents should look for a sound machine that travels easily and is convenient to have consistency in routine and environment when sleeping at home or traveling," recommends Certified Pediatric Sleep Consultant Maggie Moore. Perfect to take on the road, this compact Marpac Hushh White Noise Sound Machine for Baby is lightweight and portable with three soothing sound options so baby can sleep soundly anywhere. It comes with an adapter but can also run all night on a single USB charge. This sound machine fits perfectly in the diaper bag! ($30; amazon.com)

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Skip Hop Moonlight and Melodies Nightlight Soother Owl photo

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Skip Hop Moonlight and Melodies Nightlight Soother Owl

For your little night owl, this Skip Hop Moonlight and Melodies Nightlight Soother Owl features four melodies to help your little one wind down and four calming nature sounds, including white noise with a heartbeat, to send your babe off to sleep. The owl also has a glowing, adjustable night-light and calming moon and star projection. This sweet noise machine also comes with a timer featuring four interval settings including continuous play, so it stays on throughout your child's nap or during nighttime. Suggested for ages 1 to 3. ($45; target.com)

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Cloud b Sleep Sheep White Noise Sound Machine photo

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Cloud b Sleep Sheep White Noise Sound Machine

"It is important to choose sounds that have a predictable rhythm and do not have spontaneous sounds," advises Amy Andrews, a board-certified music therapist in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women & Newborns in San Diego, Calif. "For example, animal sounds are less soothing, unexpected and can startle a baby. If you choose to use noise machines or recordings, the best constant noise for a newborn is womb sounds which include a heartbeat or a whooshing sound such as ocean waves." This adorable Cloud b Sleep Sheep White Noise Sound Machine is tucked inside of a sweet stuffed animal, features eight soothing songs and sounds including surf waves, rain showers and mom's heartbeat to gently send your baby to sleep. It's battery operated and machine washable. Your little lamb will love this sound machine! ($30; buybuybaby.com)

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WavHello Benji the Bear White Noise Machine and Bluetooth Speaker photo

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WavHello Benji the Bear White Noise Machine and Bluetooth Speaker

This multifunctional WavHello Benji the Bear White Noise Machine and Bluetooth Speaker is ideal for travel with a convenient carrying clip and three white noise sound settings including Malibu Beach, Montana Rain or Babbling Brook with an option to download additional sounds. This compact device can also be used as a sweet companion for baby by utilizing the Bluetooth capability to play songs or pre-recorded messages from your phone through the downloadable VoiceShare app to entertain your little cub after naptime. So "beary" cute! Charging cable included. ($50; amazon.com)

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Big Red Rooster Baby White Noise Machine photo

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Big Red Rooster Baby White Noise Machine

"I am a huge fan of white noise machines, they are extremely calming to a baby," says Dr. Joel Warsh MD, MSc, a board-certified integrative and holistic pediatrician with Integrative Pediatrics and Medicine in Studio City, Calif. "The brain naturally craves sensory input. During sleep, constant white noise gives the brain a tonic signal that dampens its own internal systems." The Big Red Rooster Baby White Noise Machine is a handy portable device to soothe babies and toddlers with six soothing lullabies and six comforting sounds, including white noise and heartbeat, to induce sleep. It can be used with batteries or an AC adapter. ($20; amazon.com)

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SNOOZ White Noise Sound Machine photo

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SNOOZ White Noise Sound Machine

This tranquilizing SNOOZ White Noise Sound Machine works with an actual fan inside to create a calming sound to block loud outside noises for babies and parents alike. This model also features a nursery calibration with adjustable sound levels safe for baby. An app allows you to control the device remotely. It sounds absolutely dreamy! ($80; amazon.com)

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Adaptive Sound Technologies LectroFan High Fidelity White Noise Sound Machine photo

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Adaptive Sound Technologies LectroFan High Fidelity White Noise Sound Machine

When looking for a high-quality white noise machine without all of the bells and whistles, opt for this Adaptive Sound Technologies LectroFan High Fidelity White Noise Sound Machine. This top-notch machine features ten non-looping white, pink and brown noises along with ten soothing fan sounds for restful sleep. Getting your little one settled will be easy-breezy with this awesome unit! ($50; amazon.com)

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The Baby Shusher Soother photo

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The Baby Shusher Soother

"Parents should look for a white noise machine with a mix of frequencies," recommends Dr. Karp. "You need sounds to calm a crying baby versus keeping a baby asleep. Think of the quiet shushing you do to lull a baby to sleep." This portable Baby Shusher Soother calms baby with measured shushing sounds to simulate noises in the womb. It features two timer options with battery operation for portable use. ($35; target.com)

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