Best Alarm Clock
Most people rely on alarms to wake up in the morning. Though it may be tempting to use your smartphone as an alarm clock, there are potential benefits to switching to an alarm clock.
Using an alarm clock can remove the temptation to scroll through your phone right up until you close your eyes. Stopping this habit can increase your quality of rest and help you fall asleep faster by limiting your exposure to blue light. Additionally, many alarm clocks have unique features such as sunrise stimulation or time projection, which can make waking up less jarring.
With so many options and features available, choosing an alarm clock can feel overwhelming. To help you get started on your search for the best alarm clock, we’ll outline our top picks and discuss what to keep in mind as you shop.
Top Picks Overview
Our Top Picks
- Two-phase alarm for gradual waking
- Connects to WiFi and uses a smartphone app
- Battery backup provides reliability
Though the Loftie Clock is shaped like a traditional digital alarm clock, it offers a wide range of useful features that set it apart, including a gentle two-phase alarm, a dimmable display, and thirty different alarm tone options.
The two-phase alarm works by setting off a gentle tone in advance of the louder alarm. The purpose of this double-alarm system is to ease you into waking while still indicating clearly when it’s time to get up. You can customize the volume and tone of the alarm, as well as scheduling which days it is set to go off.
This alarm clock can play nature sounds at night to help lull you to sleep, and it also has a variety of built-in guided meditation and breathwork exercises that can help you establish a calming habit. You can also connect your phone to the speaker via Bluetooth to play your own music or podcasts.
The Loftie Clock features a dimmable night light and a timer-enabled blackout mode that turns off the display to keep the light from disturbing your rest.
Loftie provides free ground shipping within the United States, and the Loftie Clock is backed by a 1-year limited warranty. You can return it in its original packaging within 30 days of the purchase date for a full refund.
Yogasleep Dohm ConnectMost Soothing Alarm
- Connects to an app for ease of use
- Ten speed options and adjustable tone
- Assembled in the USA
The Yogasleep Dohm Connect pairs soothing sounds with the convenience of an app-enabled alarm clock, making this a great option if you enjoy using gentle sounds to enhance your bedtime experience.
The Dohm Connect has ten speed options and the ability to adjust tone and volume. All aspects of the machine can be controlled through the Marpac app, so you can set your sleep schedule and preferences using your phone. And if you prefer a completely dark sleeping environment, you’ll likely appreciate that the Dohm Connect doesn’t emit any light.
The Yogasleep Dohm Connect runs on a 12V power supply, which is included in the purchase. You can turn on the machine using the app and play sounds to fall asleep or help cover up bothersome sounds, such as snoring or outside noises.
The Dohm Connect is fully assembled in the United States. It also comes with a 101-night sleep trial and is backed by a 1-year limited warranty that protects against manufacturing defects.
Pavlok 3 ProBest for Heavy Sleepers
- Monitors your sleep cycle and wakes you during light sleep
- Senses when you are falling asleep again and continues the alarm
- Can release safe electrical impulses to wake heavy sleepers
Engineered to work with your wristwatch or smartwatch, the Pavlok 3 Pro can help you track daily habits from the moment you wake up to when you fall asleep. This wristwatch attachment goes beyond a basic alarm clock, beginning with monitoring your sleep cycle to wake you when it feels most natural.
The Pavlok 3 Pro is designed to help ensure you get the right amount of sleep. The attachment tracks your sleep schedule to begin vibrating when you are in the lightest stage of sleep. It can also continue to release vibrations or light electrical impulses if it senses you are falling asleep again. This may be beneficial if you are a heavy sleeper who can sleep through loud noises, or if you tend to fall asleep again after turning off an alarm. Since the vibrations are quiet, they may be less disruptive to sleep partners who wake at different times.
Though the Pavlok 3 Pro primarily functions as an alarm clock, it is also designed to support healthy and mindful habits throughout the day. The Good Habits app allows the attachment to connect to your smartphone via Bluetooth to track habits, from nail biting to meditation to daily physical activity.
The Pavlok 3 Pro is available in three different colors and two sizes. Pavlok accepts returns on items within six months from the date of purchase, but the customer is responsible for return shipping costs.
Brookstone Flip+ Travel Reversible Alarm ClockBest for Travel
- Fifteen different color options
- Touch-activated display
- Can be turned on or off by flipping the clock
Designed specifically for sleepers on the go, the Brookstone Flip+ Travel Reversible Alarm Clock is a compact digital alarm clock with a touch-activated display. The small size and interactive functions make this model suitable for frequent travelers or shoppers looking for a simple yet effective alarm clock.
Flipping the clock upside down or rightside up will turn it on or off, making it easy to use without having to set it ahead of time. The Flip+ Travel Alarm Clock’s touch-activated display, which only lights up when it senses contact, may appeal to sleepers who are sensitive to light.
This alarm clock is available in fifteen unique color options. The silicone rubber finish is smooth to the touch and resists slipping on hard surfaces.
Brookstone accepts returns within 30 days from the date of purchase, but the purchaser is responsible for return shipping fees.
L.L. Bean Moon Beam ClockBest Vintage Style
- Available in three different colors
- Includes a USB port for charging your phone
- Features a built-in snooze function
The L.L. Bean Moon Beam Clock first launched in 1952. This electric analog alarm clock stays true to the original style but incorporates some modern features such as battery backup and a USB charging port.
If you’re sensitive to light at nighttime, you can use the on/off switch to deactivate the gentle backlight on the Moon Beam Clock. You can add a soft LED light to accompany the bell tone when you wake up. There is also a snooze function to help you slowly ease into the morning.
Though the Moon Beam Clock is mainly intended to be plugged into a power source, it can also use two AA batteries as a backup. Additionally, this alarm clock features a built-in USB port, which allows you to charge your phone or other electronic devices as you rest.
You can choose between three different colors for the Moon Beam Clock: anchor gray, bluegrass, and moonlight blue.
L.L. Bean offers free shipping on orders over $50 to customers in the contiguous United States. You can return the clock for a full refund within one year from the purchase date, but you are responsible for return shipping costs.
Amazon Echo Show 5Best Features
- Voice-activated controls
- Built-in 2-megapixel camera for security and video chats
- Ability to stream TV shows and movies
If you’re looking for a highly customizable bedside device that connects to the rest of your home, you may want to consider the Amazon Echo Show 5. With features that include a smart display, a phone connection to voice-activated controls, and a camera, this alarm clock offers plenty of easy-to-use functions.
You can choose an alarm tone or connect your phone to use your own music as your morning alarm. The Echo Show 5 can also display calendar information, begin playing a podcast, or turn on the bedroom lights as soon as you wake up. You also have the option to use the alarm as a sunrise simulator, gradually increasing brightness as the morning progresses.
The Echo Show 5’s built-in 2-megapixel camera can be used to make video calls, and the accompanying app allows you to use the same camera to check on your room when you’re away from home. You can also use the smart display to stream movies or videos from platforms such as Netflix.
The Echo Show 5 comes in three colors: charcoal, deep sea blue, and glacier white. Amazon offers free shipping and returns.
How to Find the Best Alarm Clock For You
Here are some things to keep in mind as you look for the best alarm clock for your needs.
Wake-up Style: Some alarm clocks rely on audio cues ranging from beeps to nature sounds, while others use features such as lights, vibrations, or a combination of these options. Determining which wake-up style appeals to you can help you choose the most effective alarm clock for your needs.
Battery Backup: If your alarm clock plugs into the wall, a power outage in the middle of the night could keep the alarm from going off at the right time. To avoid this problem, many alarm clocks use battery backups. Looking for an option with battery backup can help ensure your alarm clock is reliable.
Value: Determining which features matter to you can help you decide what price range is appropriate for your budget. If you simply want a basic alarm clock that beeps in the morning, you will probably be able to find a less expensive option. However, if you want added features such as light or nature sounds, you may need to spend more.
Smart Features: Some newer alarm clocks can connect to smartphone apps or interact with interfaces such as Google Home or Amazon Alexa. If you like the idea of being able to make a phone call or turn off the lights from your alarm clock, a model with these features may be particularly suitable.
Display: Though some sleepers enjoy an alarm clock with a bright, easy-to-read display, others may find that the light is too disruptive. For this reason, display options can be an important factor to consider prior to making a purchase.
Additional Features: Many alarm clocks come with added features such as USB ports, lights, and speakers. Comparing these features and figuring out which ones matter to you will help you find the best alarm clock for your needs.
Types of Alarm Clocks
Digital Alarm Clocks: Digital alarm clocks typically use a small backlit screen to display the time. Though the screen makes these clocks easy to read, it may bother you if you’re sensitive to light.
Analog Alarm Clocks: Analog alarm clocks look very similar to traditional clocks in that they use small gears to move the short and long hands to display the time. While this kind of alarm clock may take more effort to read, it generally doesn’t emit any irritating light, and some shoppers may prefer the unique style.
Sunrise Alarm Clocks: Sunrise alarm clocks light up slowly at a set time to mimic the rise of the sun. You can often choose how long the light increases and how bright it can become, and many of these alarm clocks also have gentle tones to ensure you get up when you need to.
Wearable Smart Alarms: Wearable smart alarms are intended to be worn, typically as a watch. These alarms monitor your sleep cycle and are designed to go off when you are in a lighter stage of sleep, so waking feels more natural. You can choose the time window during which the alarm will go off to ensure you get up on time.
Projection Alarm Clocks: These alarm clocks project the time onto the ceiling or wall, which makes the time easier to read without needing to readjust in bed. Most projection alarm clocks use traditional alarm sounds, such as beeps.
Vibration Alarm Clocks: Vibration alarm clocks will shake or vibrate, sometimes in combination with sounds, to wake sleepers. These alarm clocks may be useful for individuals who can sleep through loud sounds. Some versions of these can also be worn, which can be helpful if you have a sleep partner with a different wake time.
Why Use an Alarm Clock?
It may seem unnecessary to purchase an alarm clock when most smartphones have plenty of alarm apps available for free. However, keeping your smartphone at your bedside can have negative effects on your sleep.
Checking your phone first thing in the morning and right before you fall asleep exposes you to blue light, which may impact your natural circadian rhythm. Your circadian rhythm uses external cues such as light to determine when to initiate sleep. Blue light can disrupt your natural wake-sleep cycle and lead to issues such as insomnia and poor sleep quality.
Choosing the right alarm clock can make a big difference to your sleep. From gradual lighting that mimics the sunrise to gentle vibration or nature sounds, the best alarm clocks offer a wide range of features that can make both falling asleep at night and waking up in the morning more enjoyable.