Remote-controlled lighting systems – or smart lights – are an alternative method for improving sleep. Smart lights can mimic natural light to better manage your sleep-wake schedule. The sleep-wake schedule refers to the pattern in which you are asleep and awake each day. This pattern is known as a circadian rhythm, and it operates as part of the body’s 24-hour internal clock. Circadian rhythms respond most to light and dark cues. This is why humans are programmed to sleep at night and be awake during the day. Sometimes a person’s sleep-wake schedule can get thrown off, which can end up worsening their sleep quality and duration. Smart lights are a way to help get the body’s sleep-wake cycle back on track by mimicking natural light cues to help the body go to bed and wake up better.
There are six top remote-controlled lighting systems, each with its attributes. If you have difficulty achieving good rest, smart lights may help by getting your circadian rhythm on a better schedule to ensure you get enough sleep. We will feature important details about the best remote lighting solutions and how they may improve your sleep.
1. LIFX Z Multicolor Light Strip
|• No router bridge required||• Setup may be difficult|
|• Compatible with Alexa, Hey Google, HomeKit, and Siri|
The LIFX Z Multicolor Light Strip is a remote-controlled light strip kit. You can place the strips in different bedroom areas, such as behind your dresser or nightstand. You can control them through your home’s wifi system, where you can select multiple colors for the strips. To use them, you must first connect the strips, then connect them to the power adapter and plug them in. From there, you can use LIFX’s app to control the lights. These lighting strips are available on Amazon for either 66.95 or 89.99 dollars, depending on the length you purchase. The benefits of LIFX’s remote lights are that a bridge is not needed to connect them to your router. Another benefit is that they are compatible with Alexa, Hey Google, HomeKit, and Siri. A disadvantage is that setup may be more difficult. The people who should use this product are tech-savvy customers who may be able to better navigate the setup process.
2. Lutron Caseta Smart Home Switch with Wallplate
|• Work when wifi is down||• Bridge, pico remote sold separately|
|• Auto-adjust to seasons||• No dimmer switch|
|• Professional installation available|
Lutron Caseta Smart Home Switch with Wallplate is a lighting system used in place of traditional wall lights. This lighting system is touchless, which can help stop the spread of germs. Users can automatically set the lights to changing seasons and turn them on or off as needed. You can control the lights through the Lutron app or the user’s voice. The Lutron lights are available for 58.90 dollars on Amazon. The advantages of this product are that it works even when the wifi is down, it can automatically adjust with the seasons, and it is budget-friendly. Additionally, you can have a professional install the system for you. A disadvantage is that you have to purchase Lutron’s smart bridge and pico remote separately. The item also does not come with a dimmer switch. The people who should use this kit are those who live alone or frequently travel because you can turn the lights on if you’re not home or when you’re arriving home.
3. Philips Hue Smart Bulb Starter Kit
|• Comes with hub||• Higher price|
|• 16 million color options|
|• Energy-efficient lights|
The Philips Hue Smart Bulb Starter Kit is a system of remote-controlled lights for the home. This product features 16 million color options to find the perfect settings for better rest. Users control the light system through their smartphone or tablet by downloading the company’s mobile app. The kit can also be paired with a smart home assistant for voice-activated controls. The Philips Hue Smart Bulb Starter Kit sells for 188 dollars on Amazon. The advantages of this product are that it comes with a hub for connecting to your wifi router, has 16 million color options, and the lights are Energy-star certified for efficiency. The disadvantage is that it is higher in price than other lighting systems. The people who should buy this system are those seeking lots of color options for lighting.
4. Wyze Bulb
|• Affordable||• May need to regularly be replaced|
|• Will need extra packs for other rooms|
The Wyze Bulb is a smart light bulb designed to dim or brighten as needed. The Wyze app allows you to control the light hues, including custom presets for going to bed and waking up. Wyze bulbs are also compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant. Users can choose among 16 million color hues, giving a wide range of lighting options. To use them, place the bulb into any room lamps or lighting fixtures. Then, use the app or your smart home system to control them. A two-pack of Wyze bulbs is available for 26.98 dollars on Amazon. The disadvantages of this product are that you may have to regularly replace the bulbs and buy multiple packs if you want to use them in other rooms. The advantage of this product is that it is very affordable. The people who should buy this are customers on a tighter budget.
5. Kasa Smart Light Switch
|• Low cost||• Setup may be more complicated|
|• Customization options|
The Kasa Smart Light Switch is designed to replace your traditional wall light switch. To use the Kasa switch, you will first need to remove your old wall light switch. You will then look for the neutral wires in the wall pocket and disconnect the wires from the old switch into your new Kasa switch. The Kasa app also provides setup instructions. Once you’re all set up, you can control your lights from anywhere using the Kasa app on your smartphone. The system is also compatible with Alexa or Google Assistant for at-home voice control. The Kasa Smart Light Switch is available for 19.99 dollars on Amazon. The advantages of this product are its low price and customization options such as away mode, schedule setup, and mood settings. The disadvantage is that setup may be more complicated since you have to figure out the wiring. The people who should use this product are those looking for a wall-lighting system at a budget-friendly price.
6. Lutron Caseta Smart Start Kit
|• Smart bridge won’t use up your wifi||• More costly|
|• No neutral wiring required||• May need help with wiring setup|
The Lutron Caseta Smart Start Kit is an advanced alternative to the Lutron Caseta Smart Home Switch with Wallplate. The Smart Start Kit comes with additional items not included in the Smart Home Switch, including the smart bridge, dimmer switch, and pico dimming remote. The pico wall plate bracket is sold separately. You can control the lights using the Lutron app on your smartphone. The lights are also compatible with voice-activated systems like Alexa, Apple HomeKit, and Google Assistant. The pico remote is another method for controlling the lights. The Lutron Caseta Smart Smarta Kit is available for 99.95 dollars on Amazon. An advantage of this product is that the smart bridge does not work on wifi and won’t slow down your home’s wifi connection. Secondly, the Smart Smart Kit doesn’t require neutral wiring for setup. Therefore, you can use this lighting system in older homes too. The disadvantages of this product are that it’s more costly, and you may need help with the wiring setup.
How can Smart Lights Help You Sleep Better?
Smart lights can help you sleep better by mimicking natural light to regulate your sleep-wake schedule. The sleep-wake schedule is when you are asleep and awake each day. The sleep-wake schedule is also referred to as a circadian rhythm. Circadian rhythms operate as part of the body’s 24-hour internal clock. They are a series of physiological changes that respond most to light and dark cues. For instance, circadian rhythms are why humans normally sleep at night and are awake during the day. Because circadian rhythms are primarily managed by light and dark, this means that light and sleep quality’s relationship is closely connected.
In some cases, a person’s sleep-wake schedule can get thrown off. An irregular sleep schedule can worsen the individual’s sleep quality and duration. Smart lights offer a solution to get the body’s sleep-wake cycle back on track by mimicking natural light cues. These light cues promote tiredness and alertness to help you fall asleep faster and wake up easier.
How Should You Adjust Lights to GetQuality Sleep?
You should adjust lights to get quality sleep according to the times you plan to go to bed and wake up. You should begin dimming the lights about an hour before your scheduled bedtime. Less light will prompt your body to start feeling sleepy. For example, melatonin production will increase with more darkness to foster sleepiness. When it’s time to go to bed, your room should be completely dark. Any type of light, such as light from tech devices or your smart light system, could be distracting and negatively affect your sleep quality. For the morning, you will want the lights to start becoming bright when it is time to wake up. Brighter hues will prompt your body to feel more alert, and melatonin production will begin decreasing at this time.
Which Light Color is Beneficial for Sleep?
The light colors that are beneficial for sleep are warm hues like red, orange, and yellow. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that red light has no effect on the circadian rhythm, so it’s safe to use at night, while orange and yellow have little impact. The best and worst bedroom colors for sleep are important to know because they can impact your sleep-wake schedule and quality of rest. Blue light is considered the worst light for sleep because it strongly impacts the circadian rhythm. Blue light comes from screen devices like cell phones, tablets, or computers. White light exposure during the day is good for promoting alertness and a better mood.
Jill Zwarensteyn is the editor for Sleep Advisor and a certified sleep science coach. She is enthusiastic about providing helpful and engaging information on all things sleep and wellness.
Based in Los Angeles, she is an experienced writer and journalist who enjoys spending her free time at the beach, hiking, reading, or exploring new places around town.
She’s also an avid traveler who has a personal goal of being able to successfully sleep on an airplane someday.