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Red Noise Explained

by BetterSleep
Nov 5 2022 • 6 min read

A common misconception is that noise, in all its forms, is just a nuisance to be dealt with or ignored. However, certain types of noise can actually have a significant impact on our physical and mental well-being. One type of noise that falls into this category is red noise.

Red noise is characterized by a deeper, heavier sound and has been shown to have a calming effect on the brain. It can be used as a tool for improving sleep, reducing stress and anxiety, and even boosting productivity and creativity.

In this blog post, we will discuss the science behind red noise and how it can be incorporated into your daily routine for maximum benefits. We will also provide suggestions for finding high-quality red noise tracks and incorporating them into your daily life.

What is Red Noise and Where Can You Find It?

Red noise, also known as Brownian noise or brown noise, is a type of signal or data that follows a random pattern. It is a type of ambient noise generated by electronic devices and is often used for testing purposes in fields such as acoustics and telecommunications.

Red noise lies deep on the noise frequency spectrum and is made up of low frequencies. It can be recognized as a hissing sound and is commonly heard in computer systems, radios, and televisions. It can also be found in many natural phenomena such as weather patterns and stock market fluctuations.

Red noise is caused by the random fluctuations of electrical currents. The name “red noise” comes from the fact that it is often associated with the color red. Red noise is not harmful to humans and is actually quite relaxing for some people. It can help mask other sounds and can be used to create a sense of ambiance. Red noise is also known to help people get a better night’s sleep and focus on tasks. Other color noises exist that are unrelated to sleep. Some of these include pink noise, blue noise, grey noise, green noise, and violet noise, also called purple noise.

The Benefits of Using Red Noise for Sleep or Concentration

Using red noise for sleep or concentration can have numerous benefits, some of which include:

Improved Sleep Quality

Using red noise for sleep can lead to improved sleep quality. This is because red noise acts as a type of white noise, which masks disruptive sounds and creates a soothing background sound. Red noise has been shown to have a calming effect on the brain, leading to deeper and more restful sleep.

In studies, individuals who used red noise while sleeping showed improved performance on memory and attention tasks the next day compared to those who did not use red noise.

Overall, using red noise can lead to enhanced focus and concentration on tasks by improving both short-term focus by blocking out distractions and long-term cognitive function through better sleep.

Reduced Stress Levels

One important benefit of using red noise for sleep or concentration is reduced stress levels. When we are able to get a good night’s rest or maintain focus on a task, our stress levels naturally decrease. This is because the brain and body are able to function at their optimal levels, leading to an overall sense of well-being and lowered stress.

Research has also shown that specific frequencies of sound, including those found in red noise, can induce a relaxation response in the body and reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. In this way, incorporating red noise into our sleep or work routine can promote overall better health and lower stress levels.

Enhanced Creativity

A potential benefit of using red noise for sleep or concentration is enhanced creativity. Studies have shown that allowing the brain to enter a relaxed state, such as during sleep or deep concentration, can lead to improved creative problem-solving abilities.

Red noise has been found to be particularly effective at promoting relaxation and deep, restorative sleep, which in turn can lead to improved creativity. Additionally, using red noise during moments of concentration can also improve focus and attention, allowing the mind to more easily make connections and come up with innovative ideas.

Improved Mental Clarity

One benefit of using red noise for sleep or concentration is improved mental clarity. When we sleep, our brains go through important processes that help us consolidate and integrate new information. Red noise can enhance the depth and quality of our sleep, allowing these important brain processes to occur more effectively.

In addition, using red noise during periods of concentration can help block out any distracting background noise and improve focus. This can lead to improved cognitive performance and clearer thinking.

Some of the Best Ways to Listen to Red Noise

One of the best ways to listen to red noise is through a noise generator or app. These machines and apps provide constant background sound, similar to the static of a television or radio, but with all frequencies present in equal intensity.

Another option is to use headphones or speakers to play a red noise track from a streaming service or online source. Red noise can also be created manually by adjusting the equalizer on a music player to have a consistent downward slope in frequency levels.

Finally, some people prefer to listen to naturally occurring red noise, such as the sound of waves crashing on a beach or rain falling on leaves.

How Long Should You Listen to Red Noise for Optimal Results?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to how long you should listen to red noise for optimal results, as it depends on the individual’s needs and preferences.

Some people may find that listening for just a few minutes at a time is enough to help them focus or relax, while others may prefer longer sessions. It may also be helpful to experiment with different lengths of time and see what works best for you.

One strategy that can be useful is to start with shorter sessions and gradually increase the length of time as you become more familiar with the sound and how it affects you. It’s important to listen at a comfortable volume and to take breaks as needed. If you begin to feel tired or overwhelmed, it’s a good indication that it’s time to stop or take a break.

Are There Any Side Effects Associated with Listening to Red Noise?

There are currently no known side effects associated with listening to red noise. However, it is important to note that every individual may have a different reaction to certain sounds and frequencies. It is recommended to listen at a comfortable volume and for limited periods of time as with any type of sound or noise.

Additionally, some people may find certain frequencies or sounds irritating or uncomfortable, so it is important to listen at a level that is comfortable for the individual. It is also important to take regular breaks from listening, as with any activity involving sound.

As always, it is recommended to consult with a healthcare professional if there are any concerns or questions about the potential effects of red noise.

How to Create a Relaxing Environment with Red Noise

To create a relaxing environment with red noise, the first step is to find a source for the sound. This can be in the form of a white noise machine or the BetterSleep app. It is important to make sure the volume is not too loud and can be adjusted to a comfortable level.

Next, choose an area in the home or office that is quiet and free from distractions. Dimming the lights and adding candles or essential oils can enhance the calming atmosphere.

Finally, listen to the red noise for at least 20-30 minutes while focusing on deep breathing and letting go of any tension or stress in the body. This can lead to improved sleep and overall relaxation.

Tips for Incorporating Red Noise into Your Daily Routine

Figure Out What Type of Red Noise Works Best for You

One tip for incorporating red noise into your daily routine is to figure out what type of red noise works best for you. This can be done by experimenting with various types of red noise, such as a fan, white noise machine, or nature sounds.

Pay attention to how each type affects your focus and relaxation levels and choose the one that has the most positive effect on your overall well-being. It may also be helpful to vary the volume and duration of the red noise to find a comfortable level for you.

Additionally, experimenting with different times of day to listen to red noise can help determine when it is most effective for improving your productivity and relaxation levels. Overall, finding the right type and timing of red noise can greatly enhance its benefits in your daily routine.

Set Aside a Designated Time

Another way to incorporate red noise into your daily routine is to set aside a designated time to listen to it. This could be during your morning or evening routine while taking a break at work, or even before bed.

Initially, it may seem strange to set aside specific time for listening to red noise, but doing so can help reinforce the habit and make it a regular part of your routine.

It’s important to find a quiet space where you won’t be distracted or interrupted during this designated time. This could be your bedroom, office, or even just using headphones in a quiet corner of public space. Make sure the volume is comfortable for you and that the red noise isn’t too overwhelming or disruptive.

Additionally, using red noise at the same time every day can help train your brain to relax and focus during that period of time. This can ultimately improve your productivity and overall well-being. So give it a try and see how incorporating red noise into your daily routine can benefit you!

Consider Investing in High-Quality Headphones or Speakers

One tip for incorporating red noise into your daily routine is to invest in high-quality headphones or speakers. Red noise has a deeper and more soothing sound compared to white noise.

By using headphones or speakers with good sound quality, you can fully immerse yourself in the relaxing tones of red noise and maximize its benefits. Additionally, having a dedicated device for playing red noise can help to establish a consistent routine of incorporating it into your daily life.


Red noise has numerous benefits for improving sleep, concentration, and overall well-being. It can also be used in therapy for those with sensory processing disorders or tinnitus. One of the best ways to listen to red noise is through a white noise machine or sound machine with the option to play red noise.

Alternatively, red noise can also be found on various relaxing music and meditation apps such as the BetterSleep app. When using red noise, it is important to find a volume and duration that is comfortable for you. With regular use, red noise can have a positive impact on your daily life.

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