When you want to fall asleep to relaxing music or calming sounds — or block out snoring and other distractions — a good set of sleep headphones can help. The
best headphones for sleeping will be comfortable to wear all night, and they'll connect easily to your music device.
Your main choice will be between a headband with built-in earphones or earbuds. Here are the pros and cons of each:
Headbands: These tend to be more comfortable than earbuds — especially if you’re a side sleeper or someone who tosses and turns — but the sound quality and noise reduction/cancelling aren’t quite as good as with some earbuds. If opting for a headband, keep material in mind: Hot sleepers should choose a headband made from breathable, moisture-wicking material, but if you get cold at night, go for a cozy knit headband. Earbuds: These earn big points for noise-blocking and sound quality, but they may be uncomfortable for side sleepers, and prolonged use can lead to ear wax buildup and infections. And while Bluetooth earbuds are an option, they tend to be bulkier and less comfortable for sleeping, which is why I recommend corded versions and unplugging or tangling can result if you shift position.
Whether you love falling asleep to music, podcasts, audiobooks, or white noise, these are the
best headphones to sleep in to help you snooze without distractions — just make sure you don’t sleep through your alarm clock in the morning. We only recommend products we love and that we think you will, too. We may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was written by our Commerce team. 1 A Breathable Headband For Hot Sleepers
Made from a breathable, moisture-wicking material, these
Bluetooth sleep headphones are comfy for anyone looking to stay cool at night. The wireless speakers inside the headband connect to Bluetooth-enabled devices, so you can fall asleep to music, podcasts, audiobooks, and more. The battery lasts for 10 hours on one charge. Plus, the headband is washable — just remove the speakers first.
You can also wear this sporty headband when working out, and it features a built-in microphone and music control panel make it easy to answer calls and change the audio on your phone.
According to a fan: “I’m very pleased with the comfort of the sleep headphones. [...] It has good sound and is easy to adjust. While sleeping it is loud enough for me but my husband can’t hear it. Battery life lasts through the night. Well worth the price.” 2 A Cozy Knit Headband For Cold Sleepers
To keep your ears warm while you fall asleep on chilly nights, these
knit headband sleep headphones are a cozy choice. Made from soft, double-knitted acrylic and featuring wireless Bluetooth speakers, the headphones offer six hours of battery life on one charge — maybe not quite enough to get through the whole night, but perfect if you just need help falling asleep. There’s a music control panel on one side for skipping tracks and adjusting volume, as well as a built-in microphone for hands-free calling. And while the warm headband is great for nighttime wear, it also works for keeping ears warm on cold weather days.
The comfy headband is available in a gray or black knit, as well as other soft Lycra and acrylic styles, and it's washable — just be sure to remove the headphones first.
According to a fan: “I used to feel uncomfortable when wearing in-ear headphones, but now with this, I feel much more comfortable. [...] Now I will wear it to listen to music to sleep, which greatly improves my sleep quality. I like it very much!” 3 These Flexible Silicone Earbuds
Although earbuds in general might be uncomfortable for side sleepers, these
earbuds for sleeping are soft, lightweight, and flexible so they're still a feasible option for everyone. The extra-long, 50-inch cord reduces the risk of unplugging when you turn over, and the cable's three-button remote and built-in microphone let you control music and answer phone calls. They don't require charging — which is a plus — and reviewers are pleased with the sound quality. According to a fan: “These are great earbuds to use while sleeping. I usually sleep on my side and these are so comfortable and they stay in all night.” 4 A Cute Animal-Print Headband
Want your sleep headphones to complement your cute PJs? Opt for these
animal-print sleep headphones, made from soft and breathable cotton and polyester. The adjustable wireless headphones connect to Bluetooth devices, and there’s a music control panel and a built-in microphone for hands-free calling. Thanks to the removable headphones, the headband is easy to wash, too. You’ll get six to eight hours of use on one charge. However, some reviewers note the speakers aren’t as loud as they’d like but that the power on/off notification is a bit too loud. According to a fan: “Soft material, you cannot feel the headphones against your ear when wearing but when positioning it you can feel where the placement should be. Very comfortable, can’t wait to try on [an] airplane ride or on a road trip to cover my eyes when sleeping.” 5 A Memory Foam Eye Mask With Headphones
eye mask sleep headphones, you can block out light and listen to relaxing sounds at the same time. Made from soft memory foam, the 3-D sleep mask is contoured for a comfy fit that doesn’t put pressure on your eyes, and the Velcro closure lets you adjust the size. (One thing to keep in mind: Memory foam can be warm, so hot sleepers might find this option uncomfortable.) The mask features wireless Bluetooth speakers, a music control panel, and a built-in microphone for hands-free calling. This option features passive noise cancellation, which means it's mechanically designed to block out more noise than the other headband options.
The battery offers 10 hours of playtime on one charge, and the speakers are removable so you can wash the headband.
According to a fan: “Very comfortable. I like that I can play music and block out noise along with blocking out light. Good sound quality.” 6 These Noise-Cancelling Earbuds
Bose wins my pick for
best noise-cancelling headphones for sleeping, and although they're the priciest option on the list, they’re the only ones with active noise cancellation to reduce distracting sounds. Passive noise cancellation (like the above option) involves noise reduction based on the shape of the speakers themselves. But active noise cancellation — which was originally invented for airline pilots — is a high-tech (and more effective) feature. It involves a mic that picks up low frequency ambient sound and then neutralizes it before reaching the ears. At the same time, a the headset manufactures an inverted sound. The result? The two noises actively cancel each other out, resulting in pristine, golden silence.
The earbuds feature soft tips for a comfortable, sealed fit, and if you just want to reduce noise
without listening to music, you can use the noise cancellation feature on its own — pretty cool. Plus, you can easily toggle between noise cancellation mode and "aware" mode to hear what’s going on around you. And, unsurprisingly for this prestige brand, reviewers love the sound quality.
The remote on the cord lets you control music and answer phone calls, and small, medium and large tips are included, so you can find the best fit. One thing to note: These corded headphones require charging, but the battery provides up to 16 hours of use on one charge. Choose between two models: one that’s compatible with Apple devices, and one that works with Samsung and Android devices.
According to a fan: “The noise cancelling is top-notch. Since moving into the city, I haven't gotten great sleep because I am a sensitive sleeper (loud sirens and motorcycles all throughout the night). These work like a charm -- I can't even hear the heater in my apartment.”