One of the latest health crazes on TikTok is the color noise trend, which is giving people hope for a better night’s sleep.
Whether it’s money worries, relationship problems, or work stress keeping us up all night, we’re obviously desperate for solutions.
So could this be it? Here’s everything we know about “color noise” and the trend so far.
TikTok’s Color Noise Trend Explained in 12 Points
What is color noise? “This is a relatively new trend in sleep, but it is well known in physics and electronics,” says The Sleep Charity’s deputy chief executive Lisa Artis. “Colors refer to different types of noise that all sound unique to the ear.” Assigning a color to a type of sound is simply a way of categorizing the type of noise (eg soft/soothing, etc.).
How did it become a trend on TikTok? Users share what types of noise they prefer—white, brown, pink, green, or more—and how it helps them relax and fall asleep, among other things.
Maybe he has a favorite color. One TikTok user shared: “Brown noise [a deep low frequency of sound] is a favorite in our household because it helps us relax and sleep,” which is a common preferred choice online.
What are the benefits? “It can help block out distracting sounds, relax, turn off intrusive thoughts, and reduce stress and anxiety,” Artis says, all of which can aid sleep. “You can either listen to it before you go to sleep, or you can listen to it all night long.”
What is white noise? “White noise is often used to mask background noise, such as traffic, and contains equal amounts of all frequencies audible to the human ear,” says Artis.
And what about brown noise? “Brown noise is a deeper, lower frequency sound that can help us focus and relax.”
Pink noise explained. “Pink noise, commonly called ambient noise, has a lower frequency than white noise, so it can be more soothing and help us sleep better.”
Green noise explained. “Green noise is in the middle of the spectrum and is a soothing, nature-like sound that can be very relaxing.”
What if you share your bed? “While some find color noise helpful, others can find it very distracting. Talk to your partner and make sure you’re on the same page,” Artis says. Alternatively, The Sleep Charity recommends sleeping apart when necessarymore useful than nagging arguments.
Things to keep in mind. Test which color suits you best. “But it’s important to use it to support our sleep, rather than becoming dependent on it,” says Artis. “This might be a problem if you go on vacation or stay at a friend’s house.” Try turning it off before you nod off.
Still, have a calm bedtime routine and look at the bigger picture. Artis suggests “removing light from your bedroom, getting good rest and reducing caffeine intake and avoiding heavy meals before bed.” Also, addressing the root cause of your sleep problem is key.
Polite reminder. “It’s great to see the TikTok community getting involved and sharing tips on how to get a good night’s sleep,” says Artis. “However, if you are really struggling, please seek the advice of a health professional. We have a national sleep helpline where you can speak to a trained sleep advisor on 03303 530 541.’