In need of a sleep trainer or sound machine? I present to you my top three contenders; LittleHippo Mella vs Hatch Baby Rest vs Mirari Ok to Wake! I’d advise you to go with the Hatch Baby Rest unit. It’s a sophisticated all-in-one device that has stellar features.
Getting your little one to adapt to a healthy sleep pattern is a pivotal phase of parenting. But lucky for you, you don’t have to go about it the hard way. Let technology help you. Let me help you pick the right gadget for the deed.
Buyers Guide on Sleep Trainers and Sound Machines for Children
You’ll agree that technology has certainly made parenting simpler. You’ll find all sorts of sophisticated gadgets designed to make your parenting journey much easier. The hard part is picking the right one — especially if you’re buying a particular device for the first time! Is that your dilemma? Are you finding it hard to decide on which sleep trainer or sound machine to buy? I’ve created this guide to make the process go much smoother for you. I’ll explain what these nifty devices are good for, give a little background info on the brands, and highlight features you need to look out for. The goal is to help you make the right pick. Let’s get started.
A Bit About the Brands
I’ll start off with the brand LittleHippo. Founded in 2016 by Stephanie and Dennis, you could say the company is fairly new to the baby market. But if there’s one thing you can count on from this millennial company is the manufacturing of modern products. LittleHippo specializes in electronic children’s products that are designed to make parenting a joy. Aesthetically pleasing and impressive design are the terms that basically sum up the company’s product offering. Sleep trainers and demineralization filters are part of the brand’s product line. Next up I have the brand Hatch Baby which was started in 2012. The company is known for designing high-quality smart sleep products for everyone — not just for babies. Because let’s face it; who doesn’t need a good night’s rest? And there’s a science to achieving this balance between waking and sleeping. Hatch baby products incorporate this science in their products. The brand has only one goal in mind — to make sleep time a breeze for everyone. Sleep trainers and sound machines are what the brand offers. Finally, we have the brand Ok to Wake. This family-oriented brand is the brainchild of the revolutionary Mirari sleep trainer which has been known to make sleeping better in most households. One thing you’ll appreciate about their key product is how user-friendly it is.
What are Sleep Trainers and Sound Machines?
In case you didn’t know that such products exist, I’ll take this moment to briefly explain what exactly sleep trainers and sound machines are. I’ll quickly point out that you can buy either one of the two devices or one gadget that serves both functions:
- Sleep trainer: A sleep trainer helps create a better sleeping environment for your older kids which ultimately benefits the entire family. It notifies your child whether it’s time to wake up or if they should stay in bed a little longer. Given their way, toddlers would rather stay up all night and wake up pretty early. As you know, that’s not recommended because too little sleep can stunt your child’s cognitive development.
- Sound machine: A sound machine is designed to produce a calming sound or white noise that most children — and their parents — find soothing. As such, your little one falls asleep faster and peacefully thanks to the sounds coming from the gadget. The same sound also makes those midnight breastfeeding sessions more manageable. You don’t have to worry about your baby waking up mid-way. You no longer have to use your iPhone and a white noise clip from YouTube to fulfill that purpose.
Features to Consider When Buying Sound Machines and Sleep Trainers
To pick the right sleep trainer and sound machine, be on the lookout for the following features:
- Sleep trainer or sound machine: Decide if you want a sleep trainer, sound machine, or a device that offers both? The LittleHippo and Hatch Baby Rest are designed to offer both functions while the Mirari serves only as a sleep trainer.
- Signals: How does the unit notify your child that it’s time to sleep or wake up? Does it use facial expressions, colors, or a combination of both? The LittleHippo Mella sleep trainer uses facial expressions and offers five colors that you can pick from. The Hatch Baby Rest and Mirari use colors.
- Nightlight: Some babies find the presence of a nightlight in the room soothing when sleeping. All the products listed here have a night light.
- Mobile syncing: Can the unit be synced to your Smartphone? In this case, you can easily control the unit like adjust the volume, sound level, and brightness from your phone. The LittleHippo allows for this function but the other units don’t.
- Easy to use: You also want to pick a device that’s easy to operate. Thankfully you’ll find all the models easy to program and use.
- Type of sound: In the case of a sound machine, do you want a gadget that produces white noises or calming sounds? Calming sounds can either be the sound of rain, ocean, or waves. White noises are more of a continuous buzz reminiscent of the sound produced by hairdryers. Babies associate these white sounds with sounds they once heard while in the comfort of mommy’s womb. As you can imagine, the latter works like magic. But of course, it’s up to you and what your baby prefers. The Hatch Baby produces both white noises and calming sounds.
- Construction: Always pay attention to the construction. Pick a unit made up of sturdy materials that guarantee the product’s durability.
- Extras: What extras are featured on the units? The LittleHippo Mella produces alarm sounds that you can use for your little one’s timed activities. All units come with a nap timer. And the Mirari sleep trainer features engaging animations that most toddlers adore.
My Top Picks
- Best Overall – Hatch Baby Rest
- Best for Toddlers & Infants – LittleHippo Mella Ready to Rise
- Best Budget Pick – Mirari Ok to Wake!
Best Overall – Hatch Baby Rest
I’ll start off with this Hatch Baby Rest unit which is an all-in-one device that works as a sleep trainer and sound machine. The unit produces a wide range of sounds including white noises and calming noises like ocean waves and singing birds. This device also comes with a nightlight designed to create a soothing ambiance in your baby’s room.
Who It’s For
It’s ideal for parents looking for a sophisticated all-in-one gadget designed to grow with their baby.
Why You Should Buy It
Despite the sophisticated technology, this unit is surprisingly very easy to program. Its most notable feature has to be that it can be synced to your phone. You can control the unit’s brightness, sound, and color using your phone. How’s that for convenience?
- Dimensions: 4 x 4 x 6.2”
- Material: ABS plastic
- Weight: 1lb
- Stylish design
- Easy to use
- Night light dimmable
- White noises loud even on the lower setting
- Doesn’t operate using Wi-Fi, only Bluetooth
Best for Toddlers & Infants – LittleHippo Mella Ready to Rise
Next up, I have the LittleHippo Mella device which is also a sleep trainer and sound machine in one. It uses colors and facial expressions to notify your child whether it’s time to wake up or continue sleeping. The unit has five colors that you can pick from, it comes with a night light and features silent alarm sounds.
Who It’s For
This device is perfect for toddlers and infants.
Why You Should Buy It
I’m particularly drawn to the stylish design that’s designed to make your baby’s room look chic and modern. But more than anything else, the pretty design is complimented by impressive functionality and durable construction.
- Dimensions: 4.25 x 4.25 x 4.5”
- Material: Silicon
- Weight: 3.75lb
- Buttons lock so it can’t be accidentally reprogrammed
- Easy to program
- Some people may find the white noises too loud
- Some children may find the nightlight too bright
Best Budget Pick – Mirari Ok to Wake!
Lastly, I have the Mirari Ok to Wake! unit which works as a sleep trainer. A green light lights up notifying your child that it’s time to wake up and start the day. The unit also features a nap timer and alarm clock that you can use to set your child’s napping schedule.
Who It’s For
This unit is suitable for toddlers only. It’s not ideal for infants since it doesn’t produce any soothing sounds.
Why You Should Buy It
Firstly, this is the cheapest model on my list. I suppose the fact that it’s the only product that doesn’t offer the sound machine function is the main reason behind the lower price. But nonetheless, it’s perfect for training your kids to adhere to a healthy sleep pattern. I love the cute fun animations that give the device some personality.
- Dimensions: 5 x 5 x 4.3”
- Material: Plastic
- Weight: 3.75lb
- Comes with a USB cable and back up batteries
- Outstanding battery life
- Easy to use
- Not a sound machine
- Nightlight only lasts for two hours
When should you start sleep training your baby?
Between the four and six month mark is a good place to start. Have a look at this video if you need tips on how to go about it the right way.
Are sleep trainers necessary?
I’d say definitely. Sleep trainers deserve the same importance you award baby monitors. They help encourage healthier sleeping patterns and even instill some degree of discipline in your little ones which ultimately keeps parents sane!
If I’m to pick one from the three, I’m going with the Hatch Baby Rest device. It serves as both a sleep trainer and a sound machine — much like the LittleHippo. But where this unit excels is in that it can be synced to your mobile. You can control the unit via your Smartphone which I think is pretty cool and convenient. And yes, though it features a nightlight like the rest of the models, this is the only model that has a dimmable nightlight. As you know, some children find light distracting. To top it off, it’s easy to use and is made of durable materials. Sure it’ll cost you, but the features are certainly worth every penny.
Last update on 2020-12-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API