The 5 Best Toddler Night Lights in 2023
- A night light can be a useful tool for helping toddlers get to sleep and stay asleep if they wake in the night, have bad dreams, or develop separation anxiety.
- A night light can help establish healthy sleep habits and a good bedtime routine and develop your toddler’s independence.
- Although many night lights on the market have lots of extra features, the most important thing to look for is gentle light with a soft glow in colors that promote undisturbed sleep.
Type in “best night light for kids” in a search engine, and you’ll find lights with more extra features than you can imagine. There are remote control lights, lights in soft silicone animal shapes, lights with sleep sounds, lights that sleep train, and so much more.
However, fancy lighting effects or a white noise machine aren’t the most important things you need in a night light for kids. We’ve found some of the best toddler night lights in 2023, from the most basic to the most advanced, to help your little one sleep soundly.
Our Choice: Hatch Rest+ Sound Machine
- 𝗢𝘂𝗿 𝗹𝗮𝘁𝗲𝘀𝘁, 𝘂𝗽𝗱𝗮𝘁𝗲𝗱 𝗥𝗲𝘀𝘁+ 𝘀𝗼𝘂𝗻𝗱 𝗺𝗮𝗰𝗵𝗶𝗻𝗲. 𝖪𝖾𝖾𝗉 𝗒𝗈𝗎𝗋 𝗅𝗂𝗍𝗍𝗅𝖾 𝗈𝗇𝖾 𝖽𝗋𝖾𝖺𝗆𝗂𝗇𝗀 𝗐𝗂𝗍𝗁 𝗌𝗈𝗎𝗇𝖽𝗌 𝗅𝗂𝗄𝖾 𝗐𝗁𝗂𝗍𝖾 𝗇𝗈𝗂𝗌𝖾, 𝗐𝗂𝗇𝖽, 𝗋𝖺𝗂𝗇, 𝖺𝗇𝖽 𝗅𝗎𝗅𝗅𝖺𝖻𝗂𝖾𝗌. 𝖶𝗂-𝖥𝗂 𝖾𝗇𝖺𝖻𝗅𝖾𝖽 𝗌𝗈 𝗒𝗈𝗎 𝖼𝖺𝗇 𝖼𝗈𝗇𝗍𝗋𝗈𝗅 𝖿𝗋𝗈𝗆 𝖺𝗇𝗒𝗐𝗁𝖾𝗋𝖾 𝗍𝗈 𝗄𝖾𝖾𝗉 𝗍𝗁𝖾𝗆 𝗌𝗇𝗈𝗈𝗓𝗂𝗇𝗀 𝗍𝗁𝗋𝗈𝗎𝗀𝗁 𝗍𝗁𝖾 𝗌𝗈𝗎𝗇𝖽𝗌 𝗈𝖿 𝖾𝗏𝖾𝗋𝗒𝖽𝖺𝗒 𝗅𝗂𝖿𝖾.
- 𝗡𝗶𝗴𝗵𝘁 𝗟𝗶𝗴𝗵𝘁 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗦𝗼𝘂𝗻𝗱 𝗠𝗮𝗰𝗵𝗶𝗻𝗲. 𝖬𝖺𝗄𝖾 𝗆𝗂𝖽𝗇𝗂𝗀𝗁𝗍 𝖿𝖾𝖾𝖽𝗂𝗇𝗀𝗌 𝗌𝗈𝗈𝗍𝗁𝗂𝗇𝗀 𝖺𝗇𝖽 𝗍𝗁𝖾 𝖽𝖺𝗋𝗄 𝗅𝖾𝗌𝗌 𝗌𝖼𝖺𝗋𝗒 𝗐𝗂𝗍𝗁 𝖺 𝗋𝖾𝖺𝗌𝗌𝗎𝗋𝗂𝗇𝗀, 𝖼𝖺𝗅𝗆𝗂𝗇𝗀 𝗀𝗅𝗈𝗐. 𝖶𝗂𝗇𝖽𝗂𝗇𝗀 𝖽𝗈𝗐𝗇 𝗂𝗌 𝗆𝖺𝖽𝖾 𝗌𝗂𝗆𝗉𝗅𝖾 𝗐𝗂𝗍𝗁 𝗌𝗈𝗈𝗍𝗁𝗂𝗇𝗀 𝗌𝗈𝗎𝗇𝖽𝗌 𝗅𝗂𝗄𝖾 𝗐𝗁𝗂𝗍𝖾 𝗇𝗈𝗂𝗌𝖾, 𝗈𝖼𝖾𝖺𝗇, 𝗐𝗂𝗇𝖽, 𝖿𝖺𝗇, 𝗁𝖾𝖺𝗋𝗍𝖻𝖾𝖺𝗍, 𝗋𝖺𝗂𝗇, 𝖺𝗇𝖽 𝗅𝗎𝗅𝗅𝖺𝖻𝗂𝖾𝗌.
- 𝗖𝗵𝗮𝗿𝗴𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗯𝗮𝘀𝗲 𝗽𝗼𝘄𝗲𝗿𝘀 𝘂𝗽 𝘁𝗼 𝟴-𝗵𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝗯𝗮𝘁𝘁𝗲𝗿𝘆. 𝖶𝗁𝖾𝗋𝖾𝗏𝖾𝗋 𝗒𝗈𝗎𝗋 𝗅𝗂𝗍𝗍𝗅𝖾 𝗈𝗇𝖾 𝗌𝗇𝗈𝗈𝗓𝖾𝗌, 𝖱𝖾𝗌𝗍+ 𝖿𝗈𝗅𝗅𝗈𝗐𝗌. 𝖶𝗂𝗍𝗁 𝖺 𝗉𝗈𝗋𝗍𝖺𝖻𝗅𝖾 𝖽𝖾𝗌𝗂𝗀𝗇 𝖺𝗇𝖽 𝖻𝖺𝗍𝗍𝖾𝗋𝗒, 𝗒𝗈𝗎 𝖼𝖺𝗇 𝗄𝖾𝖾𝗉 𝗍𝗁𝖾𝗆 𝖽𝗋𝖾𝖺𝗆𝗂𝗇𝗀 — 𝗇𝗈 𝗆𝖺𝗍𝗍𝖾𝗋 𝗐𝗁𝖾𝗋𝖾 𝗇𝖺𝗉𝗌 𝗁𝖺𝗉𝗉𝖾𝗇.
- 𝗧𝗶𝗺𝗲-𝘁𝗼-𝗥𝗶𝘀𝗲. 𝖲𝖾𝗍 𝗎𝗉 𝗍𝗁𝗂𝗌 𝗅𝗂𝗀𝗁𝗍 𝖺𝗇𝖽 𝗌𝗈𝗎𝗇𝖽 𝖼𝗈𝗆𝖻𝗂𝗇𝖺𝗍𝗂𝗈𝗇 𝗍𝗈 𝗅𝖾𝗍 𝗒𝗈𝗎𝗋 𝖾𝖺𝗋𝗅𝗒 𝗋𝗂𝗌𝖾𝗋 𝗄𝗇𝗈𝗐 𝗐𝗁𝖾𝗇 𝗂𝗍’𝗌 𝗍𝗂𝗆𝖾 𝗍𝗈 𝗋𝗂𝗌𝖾. 𝖳𝗂𝗆𝖾-𝖿𝗈𝗋-𝖡𝖾𝖽. 𝖯𝖺𝗂𝗋 𝗅𝗂𝗀𝗁𝗍 𝖺𝗇𝖽 𝗌𝗈𝗎𝗇𝖽𝗌 𝗍𝗈 𝖻𝗎𝗂𝗅𝖽 𝗁𝖺𝖻𝗂𝗍𝗌 𝖺𝗇𝖽 𝖼𝗎𝖾 𝗒𝗈𝗎𝗋 𝗅𝗂𝗍𝗍𝗅𝖾 𝗈𝗇𝖾 𝖿𝗈𝗋 𝖻𝖾𝖽𝗍𝗂𝗆𝖾.
The Hatch Rest+ Sound Machine is a high-tech night light, sound machine, and soothing sleep tool all rolled into one. Although it’s on the expensive side, many parents think it’s a great value for the money because of its versatility.
All of the features of Hatch Rest+ can be operated from an app control on your smartphone. The glowing light of the Hatch Rest+ can be set to different color options, and the sound machine plays your choice of white noise, nature sounds, and lullabies.
For older children, the Time-to-Rise and Time-for-Bed features allow you to set a light and sound combination to help sleep train your toddler. Early risers know when it’s time to get up, and all children can build a healthy sleep routine with the Hatch Rest+.
GE SleepLite LED Night Light: Best Simple Night Light
- NATURAL SLEEP AID – Warmer amber light provides illumination with virtually no blue light emission that naturally supports healthy melatonin levels without harming your sleep cycle
- AUTOMATIC ON/OFF – This night light has a built-in light sensor that automatically turns the night light ON at dusk and OFF at dawn for easy operation while saving you money by only turning on in low light
- COMPACT SIZE – This 4 pack of night lights plug into any standard outlet, while leaving the 2nd outlet free for use
- HOME DÉCOR – The simple design of the white night light looks sleek and modern to complement any home
Sometimes, the simplest option is best. The GE SleepLite LED Night Light is a great, basic option for a practical plug-in night light that won’t disrupt sleep.
This unobtrusive night light exudes amber light, perfect for creating a calming atmosphere and not disrupting your child’s sleep pattern.
It’s also a space saver since it plugs directly into your power source, covering only one spot and leaving the other free for other plugs.
This night light can automatically turn off, which means you don’t have to worry about switching it off in the daytime. However, the brightness level can’t be adjusted, so consider whether it will give off enough light or too much in the space where you’ll be using it.
LittleHippo Mella: Best Sleep Training Night Light
- CREATE HEALTHY SLEEP HABITS – Say goodbye to bedtime battles with MELLA’s toddler alarm clock sleep training magic. Little ones easily learn when it’s time to rest and wake up, as MELLA uses gentle colors and facial expressions to teach bedtime and wake-up time. MELLA can give you peaceful bedtimes and later wake-ups again!
- SOOTHING SLEEP SOUNDS AND NIGHT LIGHT – MELLA offers three sleep sound options and six night light colors, creating a serene bedtime environment. Choose from white noise to waves to lullabies. The night light for kids can be adjusted to the perfect brightness to create a peaceful sleep haven.
- MODERN DESIGN, DELIGHTFUL FOR ALL AGES – Who says children’s products can’t be both functional and aesthetically pleasing? Our Ready to Rise Alarm Clock, Night Light, and Sleep Sounds Machine features a contemporary design that adds charm to any kids’ room decor, and has been featured in British Vogue, Lucie’s List, The Spruce and more!
- ADAPTABLE AS THEY GROW – MELLA’s versatility extends beyond sleep training. Use it as an older kids timer alarm clock for managing activities or as a visual timer for toddlers. Seamlessly integrate it into your child’s daily routine. Join us in creating a dreamy sleep sanctuary for your little ones, where bedtime is an enchanting experience they’ll cherish.
If you’re looking for something to help early bird toddlers learn to sleep later or to help stubborn toddlers with bedtime routine battles, the LittleHippo Mella is one of the best night lights to help kids sleep and learn good habits along the way.
It has multiple light colors, including red and amber with a dim glow, which are best for sleep. The sound machine offers white noise, soothing sounds, and music.
When setting it as a sleep training clock, the lights change color to indicate to your child when it’s time to get up. As your child grows, they can continue to use it as an alarm clock.
This is a versatile and durable little machine which many parents feel is a lifesaver, and not just a night light!
BlissLights Sky Lite Evolve: Best Star Projector
- Sky Lite Evolve, with its patented nebula cloud technology and beautiful cobalt blue stars, is a one-of-a-kind experience you won’t find anywhere else. Experience a symphony of dazzling, reinvented nebula cloud hues that blend effortlessly, creating a breathtaking display unrivaled by other galaxy projectors. This isn’t just a visual feast, it’s a portal to serene relaxation and immersive gaming experiences that truly sets a new standard.
- Relax or fall asleep to the peaceful drifting nebula clouds, pierced by ultra-sharp laser stars that stand out brilliantly against the drifting nebula clouds – the perfect night light, bedroom decoration, and beyond.
- If you’ve carved out a space to get away in your home, or need to, the Sky Lite Evolve is the element that will shift your atmosphere from relaxing to a full-on utopia.
- Full 360-degree rotation is made possible thanks to the new spherical design. With coverage of up to 900 square feet, the possibilities for relaxation, entertaining, and world-building are endless.
Do you have a little astronaut who has trouble getting to sleep? Try the BlissLights Sky Lite Evolve star projector to create your child’s very own night sky.
This is a popular option among starry night projectors because the LED rotating light is controlled with an app on your smartphone. The app allows you to create the custom colors and numbers of stars your child wants to fall asleep with.
Although this projector creates a calming atmosphere of soothing light, it may not be the most practical choice for every day use. It does not have an automatic shut-off feature or a sleep timer.
Although the light is dimmable, some children may find the projection distracting or overstimulating. So while this might be fun on special nights, a simpler plug-in might be more useful.
Skip Hop Portable Nightlight: Best Portable Night Light
- Meet your toddler’s new bedtime bestie!
- Designed to encourage nighttime independence, our adorable glowing bear nightlight comforts little ones in the dark with a soothing glow and a friendly face
- Sized just right for little hands, the portable design features an easy-grab handle, stay-cool LED light and cord-free convenience so it’s a cinch for kids to take along wherever they go
- Cord-free design, easy-carry handle for little hands, and oversize on/off button
The Skip Hop Portable Nightlight doesn’t have all the features of the others on this list, but is still a favorite among parents and children for their bedtime routines.
This simple, friendly bear is battery-operated with an easy-grasp handle so your toddler can take it anywhere. If they fall asleep with it, there’s no need to worry. The Skip Hop Portable Nightlight stays cool to the touch and shuts off automatically by slowly dimming after 30 minutes.
A single, easy-to-use power button means there are no complicated switches or timers to break.
Unfortunately, it produces a white light, which is not as good as amber or red light for children’s sleep. However, the automatic shut off means the light won’t disturb them through the night.
Understanding the Role of Night Lights in Toddler’s Sleep
Still wondering if a night light is necessary? If you’re unsure whether your toddler needs a night light, it may be helpful to know that night lights can be an extremely beneficial tool for toddlers for many reasons.
Why Use Night Lights for Toddlers?
First, night lights promote a sense of independence by providing toddlers with reassurance, particularly if they start to develop nighttime fears, like a fear of the dark. It also helps if they start to experience separation anxiety at bedtime.
A night light helps your child get to sleep, allowing them to see their familiar and safe surroundings in a gentle and calming hue as they drift off. It also reassures them they’re safe if they wake up at night and can see their room rather than intimidating darkness.
For potty training toddlers, a night light can be helpful if you’re taking your child to the bathroom before you go to sleep or if they wake up on their own and need to go.
A night light is also very useful for the inevitable accidents and bed wetting that happen in the toddler years. It allows you to help your child change and to change their bedding if necessary without turning on all the lights and getting everyone into a fully awakened state.
There are a host of reasons that toddlers find night lights helpful and reassuring as long as they are used safely.
There are a few safety considerations to keep in mind when choosing a night light:
LED vs Incandescent Lights
Night lights for kids are generally available with either LED or traditional incandescent bulbs. LED bulbs generate less heat, use less electricity, and last longer than conventional bulbs.
Some plug in lights and stand-alone lamps may need to be shut off every day. You’ll need to do this to save electricity as well as to prevent your night light from overheating.
Night lights with an automatic shut off or a timer give you one less thing to remember every morning.
Although many traditional night lights are available in white, blue, and green, studies have shown that these are actually the most disruptive colors for healthy sleep.
These colors are similar to the blue light that comes off our computer and phone screens, which keep us alert and boost our mood, the opposite of what we want at bedtime.
The best color night light for toddler sleep is red, but if a red light isn’t appealing, any light in the amber, orange and red spectrum is more conducive to falling and staying asleep.
A night light should create a calm atmosphere for your child to fall asleep rather than stimulate them to keep looking around and staying awake.
A night light should have a low-wattage bulb that produces a dim light. Most night lights are about 4.7 watts.
Criteria for Choosing the Best Toddler Night Light
Finding the best night light for your toddler will mostly depend on your lifestyle and your child’s needs. Here are some features to consider:
A night light should be a one-time purchase. LED night lights, in particular, should last for years. Night lights are generally on for hours every night, so look for ones that are made to last.
Look for simple night lights that don’t have a lot of buttons or features that can be easily broken.
If you’re choosing a stand-alone lamp, make sure it’s made of durable materials that won’t shatter if it falls to floor in your busy child’s bedroom.
Ease of Use
A night light should be a simple tool to help your child sleep at night. They should be easy to operate, easy to install, and easy to turn on and off.
Size and Shape
Although night lights come in a variety of fun shapes, sizes, and designs with different shades, consider the size of your child’s room for the amount of light that it produces.
Also consider the placement of the night light in your child’s room. Think about whether its size and shape mean it will be easily knocked over or broken when your child is playing in their room.
If you’re short on free surfaces and don’t have space for a bedside table lamp, look for plug in night lights that fit directly into the socket.
Night lights are generally useful for everyone. To get the most out of your purchase, consider simple night lights you’d like to continue using around the house once your child has outgrown them.
You may not want to keep using cute, animal shaped and nursery themed lights once your child is too big for them.
Although not essential, a timer is a helpful feature. A timer will automatically switch your light on or off, saving electricity. It also saves you the panic of wondering if you remembered to turn the light off or if the light is overheating.
While dimmers also aren’t essential, they are useful. They allow you to set the brightness of the night light for your child and slowly dim it as they outgrow their nighttime fears. They also allow you to adjust for your individual preferences.
Many night lights also have fun features, like color-changing lights, moving images, projectors, or accompanying sounds.
While these features may seem appealing at first, consider whether they might have a stimulating, rather than calming, effect on your child.
Too many moving pictures and changing colors may distract your child from sleep rather than helping them drift off. However, you might find that ambient noise or an integrated sound machine might be helpful for getting your child to sleep.
Value for Money
Like all other toddler and baby gear, you will find many options on the market for night lights, from simple, inexpensive designs, to top-of-the-range items that change color, make sounds, and even measure the temperature of your child’s room.
However, it’s important to remember that the real job of a night light is simply to provide a soothing, dim light that reassures your child. It helps them feel safe when falling asleep, and it enables you to navigate the room if they need you at night.
Night lights use electricity. So your best bet is a simple, long-lasting, energy efficient model that will get you through the toddler years without having to replace lamps or bulbs.
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Dana Meachen Rau's book, Sense of Play, follows the adventures of Chip and Joy as they play. Chip is blind, but this doesn't get in the way of their play!