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What LED light color is best for sleep – and the ones to avoid to prevent bad sleep

Homes & Gardens logo Homes & Gardens 10/08/2022 Megan Slack
Bedroom wall light © Provided by Homes & Gardens Bedroom wall light

The question of what LED light color is best for sleep may seem relative, but your choice in tone is surprisingly impactful in achieving a peaceful slumber. 

If you're wondering how to sleep better, you may want to consider painting your space a more therapeutic color (light blue is approved by the experts). Or you may want to upgrade your best mattress to ensure it's perfect for your needs. However, your bedroom lighting ideas are also vital in achieving a good night's sleep – and that includes knowing what LED light color is best for sleep.

While this factor may appear small in the grand scheme of your bedroom, experts warn that your chosen tone may harm your sleep quality. So, if you're struggling to fall (and stay) asleep at night, it is worth knowing about its power. 

What LED light color is best for sleep?

Light and wellbeing experts agree red is the best color for sleep – but what makes it so influential? 

'Switching to a natural red color light in your bedroom can help your body ease into its sleep cycle more naturally as it produces a wavelength – similar to that of the setting sun,' says Matthew Shaw, head of sales at Ultra LEDs. 'This forces your body to release more melatonin, the hormone that helps you sleep, making you feel drowsy and ready to go to sleep.'


Gallery: How to sleep better – expert tips for a successful slumber (Homes & Gardens)

Eric Rodriguez, CEO of Innerbody Research, agrees. He emphasizes that red lights [such as these on Amazon] can lead to a night of deep rejuvenating sleep – but its benefits continue long after you wake up, too. 

'On top of improving the quality of sleep, studies show red light enhances endurance to physical activities by athletes come the next day,' he explains.

What LED color should you avoid in the bedroom?

When it comes to curating your lighting ideas in the bedroom, the experts urge you to fill your space with red. But what color should you avoid? 

'Blue light must be limited during the evening as it actually suppresses the production of melatonin and disrupts the natural circadian rhythm (needed for a good night's sleep),' says Dr. Pamela Miller, a medical reviewer for All About Vision.

Avoiding blue light in your bedroom ideas can be hard, as this tone is best associated with mobile phones, televisions, and other digital devices that you might consume before sleeping. This usage can disrupt your sleep schedule and consequently impact your well-being the following day. 

'You should look to reduce screen time, especially before bed, as the blue light emitted from most screens can keep you up at night,' Dr. Pamela says. 'It can also cause damage to your retinas, leading to dry, irritated eyes and blurred vision.'

Similarly, if you've been exposed to white lights in the middle of the night, it is possible that you will also struggle to fall back into a long sleep. This usually happens if you turn on your bathroom light, which is often white light.

'[However, since red light doesn’t affect your night vision, you can comfortably wake up in the middle of the night, go to the bathroom, and back to sleep in a smooth transition,' Eric says.

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