21 Soothing Songs To Fall Asleep To That Will Help You Get The Rest You Deserve
Some people need absolute silence in order to fall asleep, but others need some sort of noise in the background, whether it's white noise, the relaxing sounds of nature, your favorite TV show, or even music. Certain songs can have therapeutic effects for some people that make it easier for them to doze off into a nice slumber, or to simply just relax. If you fall asleep to music, then you probably have your go-to playlist, but even those lose effect after a while. So, if you're looking for the perfect songs to fall asleep to, look no further.
It's not totally surprising that some tunes can help us fall asleep for the night. Music releases serotonin in the brain, a natural chemical that relaxes us and enhances our mood, as reported by BBC. The key is to choose songs that you love, but not ones you enjoy so much that they will rile you up. It's much like when people sing lullabies to help babies fall asleep. Only this time, we can enjoy Beyoncé's heavenly vocals, not the well-meaning but unimpressive singing voice of our guardians.
Whether you need some new songs to add to your bedtime playlist or just some chill bops for the beach or bathtub (prime self-care time), these 21 songs are some of the most excellent choices to soothe your body and mind. Some are old, some are new, but all of them are great contenders to make you feel relaxed and new.
1. Enya — "Only Time"
If anyone knows a thing or two about being chill, it's Enya, who, according to MSN, resides with her cats in an Irish castle, makes some of the most soothing music ever, and doesn't bother with the outside world that much. True life goals.
2. All Saints — "Pure Shores"
All Saints isn't that well known outside of the UK, but as soon as the calming bubblegum-R&B rush of "Pure Shores" sends you to a happier place (sleep), you'll be listening to their entire catalog on Spotify in no time.
3. Lana Del Rey — "Brooklyn Baby"
Many of Lana's songs could be the perfect remedy to insomnia due to their dreamy quality, but "Brooklyn Baby" is arguably her softest and most heartfelt track. If you can't feel her smiling as she sings, "Well my boyfriend's pretty cool, but he's not as cool as me," you likely have no heart.
4. Miley Cyrus — "Adore You"
Miley's tender vocals and soft runs atop the mesmerizing R&B-lite production of "Adore You" make for one of her most relaxing offerings.
5. Massive Attack — "Teardrop"
This trip-hop classic might be a song that only true '90s music lovers would remember, but it shouldn't be. The gentle drums and hypnotic synths will sway you straight to sleep (or into a simple warm daze, whatever you prefer).
6. Drake — "Passionfruit"
If you prefer something that's just as perfect for your bedtime playlist as it is for your beach party playlist, "Passionfruit" is that bop. The tropical synths combined with Drake's luscious softer register will make it very easy for you to doze off in paradise.
7. Norah Jones — "Don't Know Why"
Has a more relaxing song ever exited? If you need to slow your breathing and slow down your mind before bed, this Norah Jones classic is perfect.
8. Billie Eilish — "8"
Many people might find this standout from Billie Eilish's debut album to be more creepy and unsettling than soothing. But, there's no denying that the ukulele strums, lullaby melodies, and her ever-changing vocal effects all make for a harmonious listen.
9. Barcelona — "Please Don't Go"
The only thing better than dozing off to this utterly enchanting, and almost haunting, track would be jumping on a flight to the actual city of Barcelona. Who needs sleep when you have beach views, cheap shopping, and La Sagrada Familia?
10. Robyn — "Honey"
Robyn said she has what you want, not what you need, but she provides what you need to soothe your body and mind with "Honey." The soft, pulsing synths and her therapeutic vocals go down as smooth as actual honey, and the taste is oh so delicious.
11. Kacey Musgraves — "Golden Hour"
Nearly every track from Kacey Musgraves' Grammy Album of the Year-winning Golden Hour deserves a spot on this list. It's arguably music therapy. But the title track is definitely the most suited to preparing you for dreamland. "Golden Hour" is basically calming bliss in sonic form. There's nothing more comforting than Kacey reaffirming her love with her heavenly banjos and guitar plucks and reminding us that "everything's gonna be alright."
12. Harry Styles — "Two Ghosts"
Musgraves' tourmate, and famous ex of the next artist on the list, has a couple of chill bops himself. "Two Ghosts", rumored to be about said artist, is both a dreamy serenade and a wistful ode to what once was. It's very soothing and just a little heartbreaking.
13. Taylor Swift — "Breathe"
The most important thing to do during panic attacks and bouts of anxiety is to simply breathe. Who better to remind you than Taylor Swift? This Colbie Callait-assisted classic from Fearless transforms into a soothing epic with ease, one that could soundtrack a relaxing walk by the river and calm you down in the middle of the night.
14. Leighton Meester — "Heartstrings"
Yes, this is the same woman that played queen Blair Waldorf on Gossip Girl, and yes, she has an impressive music career. If you weren't aware (and if not, how dare you?), you have some catching up to do. Start with "Heartstrings," the title track to her folksy debut album that pulls all of the right strings (pun intended). This is the only time you can say that Blair Waldorf was chill.
15. Joseph Arthur — "Honey and the Moon"
This song soundtracked one of TV's most important moments (don't question me), when Ryan lovingly gazes at Marissa from the front seat of his car as he's driven back to Chino during the pilot episode of The O.C. It's also the sound of a perfect summer day in SoCal, as the sun sets above the Laguna Beach coastline and the view is just breathtaking.
16. Solange — "Sound of Rain"
Solange's "Sound of Rain" gives will give you all the chill vibes needed to make it through an actual storm. If rain gives you more anxiety than relaxation, look to Solange for some relief.
17. Hilary Duff — "Come Clean”
On the other hand, if you love a good storm, "let the rain fall down and wake your dreams." Or cause them, in this case. Duff's cathartic classic (and the iconic Laguna Beach theme song) is perfect to scream out your sorrows to before you crash back into a deep sleep. What a song.
18. Beyoncé — "Blue (feat. Blue Ivy)"
While this is absolutely one of the most melancholic and joyous songs in Queen Bey's repertoire, basically crafted for maximum feels and optimal chill vibes, "Blue" is primarily on this list due to Blue Ivy's inclusion. The future Queen of Music is already charting, and now, she can put you in a warm, relaxing daze.
19. Britney Spears — "Everytime"
"Everytime" is arguably most depressing Britney Spears song, but it's also kind of the perfect lullaby. The vocals are utterly angelic and can easily rock you to a deep slumber.
20. Marconi Union — "Weightless"
Marconi Union worked with actual sound therapists to create the "world's most relaxing song", and according to actual science, as reported by Forbes, they succeeded. When tested and compared against other songs meant for relaxation, "Weightless" caused a 65% reduction in anxiety and a 35% decrease in usual physiological resting rates. There's even a 10-hour version of the song to soundtrack a good night's sleep. Snooze away.
21. Africa Mate — "Blue Rain" from 'That's So Raven'
Yes, this is the song that Devon Carter plays outside Raven Baxter's bedroom window on That's So Raven after she gets grounded and can't go to the Blue Rain concert with her beau. Yes, it gets stuck in my head all the time. Yes, it's more relaxing than a Piña Colada on the beach.
Listen to these songs as you tuck yourself in at night, and you'll fall asleep before you know it. Sweet dreams.