Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive commissions for purchases made through links in this post, at no cost to you. Please read my disclosure for more info.
Our Top 3 Picks for the Best Night Lights for Kids
Getting kids to sleep through the night on their own can be so frustrating. It can take what feels like forever for them to just lie down and relax. Other times you’re woken up at 4am by a little one ready to start the day before the sun is even up. All you want is a good night’s sleep, and finding the best night light for kids can help you do that!
For some kids, just having the soothing glow will help ease their fears of sleeping on their own, and a simple plug-in night light works well enough. For others, there are night lights with more advanced features like relaxing sounds, different colors, ceiling projections, and even lights that train them on when it’s time to wake up in the morning.
With so many new options in night lights, which one do you choose? This guide to the best night lights for kids will help you choose which one will work best for your family.
- Our Top 3 Picks for the Best Night Lights for Kids
- The Best Night Lights for Kids by Category
- Best overall night light for kids: Hatch Rest+ Baby Sound Machine Night Light
- Best budget night light for kids: Sun & Moon Rise Kids Alarm Clock
- Best plug-in night light for kids: GE Color-Changing LED Night Light
- Best portable night light for kids: LED Nursery Bear Night Light for Kids LumiPets
- Best projector night light for kids: 2 in 1 Kids Night Light Moon Star Projector and Undersea Lamp
- Best night light with music for kids: WamGra Night Light Bluetooth Speaker
- Best night light with sound machine for kids: Jack & Rose Sound Machine with Night Light
- Best night light with timer/alarm clock for kids: LittleHippo Mella Ready to Rise Children’s Trainer
- Best night light for older kids: Elvissmart ES-1002 Natural Himalayan Pink Crystal Salt Lamp Night Light with Real Wood Base
- Coolest design: BRIGHTWORLD Moon Lamp Kids Night Light
- A Guide to Buying the Best Night Lights for Kids
- FAQ on Night Lights for Kids
- Final thoughts
The Best Night Lights for Kids by Category
This night light does it all because it isn’t just a night light — it’s a night light, alarm clock, sound machine, and baby monitor all in one.
When doing our research, we didn’t find any others that included all of those features. There are many night lights that might combine a few of them, but the two-way audio monitor feature sets this one apart. The Rest+ comes at a higher price tag than many other night lights, but because it combines so many features into one product, it could potentially save you money and clutter.
All the features on the Rest+ can be controlled via your smartphone. You can even hook up more than one Rest+ to your phone. So if you have multiple kids in different rooms, you can control their individual Rest+ through your phone at the same time!
Another feature parents will love is the time-to-rise settings. If you have a little one who tends to wake up too early, this gentle method can help teach them to stay in bed until it’s time to get up. You simply set the times you want them to stay in bed, and when it’s ok to get up, and the color will change as a signal that it’s wakeup time.
One potential niggling issue for parents is that this device connects via WiFi instead of Bluetooth. So if you’re having connectivity issues with your WiFi, it’ll sometimes disconnect from the system and need to be reset. However, it’s difficult to reset because it’s battery-powered and you can’t simply unplug it, so several reviewers have complained of their frustrations.
This night light and alarm clock combo isn’t cheap, but compared to our best overall pick, it’s less than half the price with a lot of the same features.
The design is adorable. One of the main features of this night light alarm clock is the sun and moon time-to-rise feature. Instead of just changing color when it’s time to wake up and get out of bed, this one displays a sun or moon for day and night. There’re 10 color options, and it’s dimmable with 17 different sounds that can be set on a timer.
Two features it lacks that the Rest+ has are two-way audio monitoring and the convenience of being able to control it via a smartphone app. However, some parents may prefer this simple setup that is controlled with buttons on the device because there’s less chance of malfunctions.
A few complaints parents had about this night light are that the directions were confusing, and some precocious kids could figure out how to operate it with the buttons, thus resetting the features.
Keep it simple with this night light. If you’re looking for a basic night light that is cheap and plugs into the wall, the GE Color-Changing LED Night Light is a great choice.
There are nine color choices, and also a color-change mode that cycles through the colors. It automatically turns on at dusk and off when the sun is up, so no need to worry about switching it on and off.
The biggest complaint is that it doesn’t have an on/off switch, just the light sensor. So if you want it off you’ll have to unplug it. Some reviewers also said the light is very bright, which could be a pro or con depending on your child’s needs.
LumiPets are adorable night lights that kids can cuddle and play with. This one’s a bear, but they come in other designs like a unicorn. They’re made of a non-toxic and washable silicone that’s safe for little ones to even sleep with, once they’re old enough to safely sleep with comfort objects.
A remote control allows parents to easily control the color and brightness of the light, and also set a sleep timer. It charges with a USB cable, and holds its charge all night long.
Some parents complained of faulty parts, but there isn’t one main complaint that stuck out while reading reviews. Overall, it’s highly recommended by parents (and kids).
Projecting the galaxy onto your ceiling is magical for kids, and this night light projector takes it to the next level. It gets the top spot because it has the option to project stars and the moon or an oceanscape with sea creatures.
There are more realistic night light projectors, but this one is perfect for little ones. Choose from eight colors and two patterns to project, or place the white cover on for a soft white glow. Plus, it rotates 360 degrees for a mesmerizing effect.
You can charge this night light with either a USB cable, or power it through four AA batteries. It operates with three simple buttons.
If we were choosing a night light projector for ourselves or an older child, this one would be our pick. It looks gorgeous, but the top pick seems more little kid-friendly with more options.
Rock out with your kids to some favorite tunes, or pop on some soothing sounds via your smartphone or other MP3 player with the WamGra Night Light Bluetooth Speaker.
This night light is multifunctional. It can play music through Bluetooth, MP3 player, or an AUX cable. Charge it up with the USB cable and you can take it on the go for up to 6-10 hours of use.
It doesn’t come with pre-programmed sounds, but using your device of choice, you can play music or sleepytime sounds. With three levels of brightness and 48 colors, it will set the mood for a calm bedtime.
Some reviewers found the setup to be confusing, but many noted the excellent customer support. So you should be able to resolve any issues if they arise.
A lot of night light devices come with sounds programmed into them, but this one gets the top spot for best sound machine night light for one simple reason — it has a sound that mimics the heartbeat in the womb. What could be more calming for a baby than that?
There are 16 sounds to choose from, and this machine works well to cancel out any disruptive noises to promote peaceful sleep for the baby (and the whole family). The sounds include 6 white noise, 4 lullaby and 6 nature sounds, and can be set to various timed intervals.
7 beautiful night light colors compliment the simple and minimalistic design. But some parents found the light to be too bright, and the sound too loud too.
Best night light with timer/alarm clock for kids: LittleHippo Mella Ready to Rise Children’s Trainer
This adorable little alarm clock with a night light and ready-to-rise feature changes facial expressions based on the time of day. How cute is that?
If you’re a parent who wants to gently encourage your early riser to stay in bed a little longer, this one is perfect for you. This night light alarm clock not only lets your child know when it’s time to stay in bed and when it’s time to wake up, but also when it’s almost time to get up! That way they can better gauge how much longer until wakeup time.
It also has three pre-programmed sounds and six light colors with timers.
Some parents had a mix of issues with the product, but a lot of those reviews also talk about the amazing customer service from the company. So if any issues arise, you’ll probably get great help in fixing it.
Best night light for older kids: Elvissmart ES-1002 Natural Himalayan Pink Crystal Salt Lamp Night Light with Real Wood Base
Older kids may still want a night light (a lot of adults do too!), but they might want it to be a bit more low-key — one that doesn’t scream night light, and is a bit more trendy.
Enter the Himalayan salt lamp. Salt lamps may or may not have added benefits, like purifying the air, but they are definitely relaxing. The warm and soothing glow they emit is comforting, and the aesthetic is perfect for an older child’s room who might be past little kid decor.
This particular salt lamp was selected for the low price tag, traditional “salt lamp” design, and overall great reviews. There are others on the market, like this one, with more features like changing colors, but we liked the traditional look.
The dreamiest night light ever. This moon lamp will spark the imagination of any kid (or adult). The surface is made based on NASA’s data on the moon surface, and when you turn on the light, it looks like a galaxy.
You can adjust the color either by touching the metal ring or with the remote. When using the touch control there are seven color options, and with the remote there are 16 with a dimmer.
Most reviewers love it, but some don’t like the way it looks when it’s not lit up. Do note that it doesn’t come with a plug for charging into a wall outlet, just the USB cable.
A Guide to Buying the Best Night Lights for Kids
What to consider when choosing the best night light for kids
A night light seems like a pretty basic item to purchase, but they have become pretty high-tech with lots of features! There’s a lot to consider, especially since some can be pricey and a bit of an investment for most families.
Choosing the right night light for your family will come down to a few things:
Night lights range in price from just a few bucks for basic plug-ins to over $100. So first and foremost, have a budget in mind when you start shopping. This list of our picks for the best night light for kids has one in every price range, so we’ve got you covered.
Night lights now come with an array of extra features. Most night lights for kids combine a few different features to be a multipurpose device. But there are usually one or two features that a specific night light will excel over others.
For instance, this night light and alarm clock combo has a lot fewer sound and light options, but includes an extra phase in the ready-to-rise feature (a visual cue to let kids know when it’s time to get up) that others don’t have. On the other hand, this night light and sound machine combo doesn’t have an alarm at all, but focuses on noise cancellation and calming light.
So you can see how one might be more appropriate for a toddler or preschooler, while another is better for small babies.
The key features you’ll want to look out for are:
- What color lights are there, and do they have a dimming feature?
- Does it have pre-programmed sounds? How many? What is the volume like?
- Is there a sleep timer and/or alarm?
- Does it include a feature to let little kids know when it’s time to wake up or stay in bed?
- Is it portable? Battery-operated, or does it have to be plugged into an outlet?
- Can it operate from a remote or phone app? Or does it have to be programmed with touch?
FAQ on Night Lights for Kids
At what age should a child stop using a night light?
Never? Just kidding. But really, it is up to your child. If you ask many adults, they’ll probably tell you they still sleep with some amount of light in their room. And if you’ve ever watched survival shows, they always light a fire in part for the psychological and emotional comfort it provides at night. Being in complete darkness is scary for most people.
Don’t forget night lights are really convenient for those middle-of-the-night potty breaks. If you have night lights in your home, your children can easily get to the bathroom without having to turn on a lot of lights, which could make it harder for them to get back to sleep.
Is it bad to let a child sleep with the light on?
There have been some studies that show too much light can inhibit melatonin production, which could impact sleep quality. However, studies like this one were done by kids playing with bright light tables just before bedtime. Not exactly comparable to a dim night light.
But if sleep quality is your concern, then turn it to the dimmest setting and place it further away from your child’s crib or bed. If your child seems well rested in the mornings and is generally sleeping well, it shouldn’t be a big concern.
Other studies that showed a connection between poor eyesight and night lights have been debunked.
What is the safest night light?
Night lights are generally safe, and since a lot of them nowadays are either battery-powered or plug-in like an alarm clock, they don’t pose any more of a risk than any other electronic device.
But be smart about where you purchase a night light and how you use it. Don’t put plug-in night lights near curtains or other fabric that could touch the bulb, and opt for bulbs that don’t get hot, like LED. This resource has some additional tips, like registering your product and checking periodically for recalls.
What color light is best for night? What color light helps kids sleep?
Some studies suggest that red light is the best to use for sleep. Our bodies interpret blue/green light as a cue that it’s daytime. Red has a different frequency that doesn’t produce that effect.
So opt for red tones in the night light and keep it at a dimmer setting to ensure optimal sleep for your kids.
Though if reddish lights make you feel like you’re about to become the unlucky protagonist in an Asian horror movie, orangish or yellowish lights would work too.
Is there any other way to get rid of my child’s fear of the dark?
First, it’s normal and natural for a child to be afraid of the dark. A lot of adults wouldn’t want to spend a lot of time alone in the dark either. So don’t push it. Be respectful of your child’s fears and don’t dismiss them. Most of them will pass with time, and the best thing you can do is support them as they go through this typical phase.
A night light is a great way to help children ease past their fear of the dark. There’re even some that are huggable for kids who are old enough, like this one. It would be a great comfort to a kid to have a little buddy to light up the room for them when they get especially uneasy.
Finding the best night light for kids isn’t a one-size-fits-all search. There’re a lot of options because each family will have different needs for their night light, but finding the right one can help your kids (and you) get more rest with less fear. We hope our list has been able to help you pick one!
Looking for ways to improve your child’s sleep? A fitness tracker that tracks their sleep patterns may also help. Here are the best fitness trackers for kids.