A good night's sleep is the foundation of our health and wellness; it boosts productivity, improves our moods, and keeps us focused. Sometimes, the stress of financial hardships can keep us from sleeping and make it harder to catch up. Modern medicine and technology offer dozens of solutions for insomnia. Unfortunately, many of those solutions cost money, which means more stress as we add to our budgets. For those of us trying to save both money and our sanity, we've put together the best free sleep apps on each mobile platform.
Sleep Sounds (4.9 stars — Android)
The Sleep Sounds app is exactly what it sounds like. Mix and match over a dozen high-quality sleep sound files to create your own white noise to play in the app or in the background. You can also set a timer to automatically shut off the sounds after you fall asleep.
Free Calm Sleep (4.6 stars — Android)
Free Calm Sleep is best used to stay asleep and improve the quality of any sleep you get. It features dozens of sleep and relaxation sounds that you can set to play for as long as you plan on sleeping or up to eight hours. Free Calm Sleep also features a Smooth Alarm that gently wakes you up.
Sleep Sounds by Sleep Pillow (4.9 stars — Apple)
This app is wildly popular, with over nine million users, and has been featured on news outlets and review sites. High-quality customizable sound mixes and fade-out timers help users get to sleep. Gradual alarms help you wake up feeling relaxed and refreshed.
White Noise (4.8 stars — Apple)
White Noise Deep Sleep Sounds works well for both adults and children and features thirty-two mixable sleep sounds. The play-on-launch feature puts your favorite sounds at your fingertips. The Today Widget also stores your recent history, so you can keep track of which sounds work and which ones don't.
Sleep Waves (4.7 stars — Windows)
Sleep Waves brings the power of sleep apps to the Windows platform. You can mix up to seven sounds at a time to create the ultimate white noise for relaxation and the timer allows you to set a cut-off to save battery life. Plus, Cross-platform support lets you take your app with you on any device running Windows.
Sleep and Relaxation Sounds (4.7 stars — Amazon)
Sleep and Relaxation Sounds isn't exactly an app; it's a free skill for Amazon's Alexa. It functions much the same as any other app on this list, but it works with Alexa speakers instead of smartphones. Alexa can also guide your sleep with this skill, using an impressive free library of sleep sounds.
When you're trying to sleep better on a budget, free apps for the smartphone you already have can be a lifesaver. Better, more restful sleep will help you focus at work and on making smart financial choices to help you get out of debt sooner.