Skip to main content
The Loftie Alarm clock gently illuminates a nightstand Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

The Best Alarm Clocks of 2022

Recommendations are independently chosen by Reviewed’s editors. Purchases you make through our links may earn us a commission.

The Loftie Alarm clock gently illuminates a nightstand Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

Why trust Reviewed?

Reviewed's mission is to help you buy the best stuff and get the most out of what you already own. Our team of product experts thoroughly vet every product we recommend to help you cut through the clutter and find what you need.

Learn more about our product testing
1
Editor's Choice Product image of Sharp DreamCaster
Best Overall

Sharp DreamCaster

The Sharp DreamCaster is an easy-to-use alarm clock with bonus features like white noise tracks. Read More

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Good selection of volumes
  • White noise feature

Cons

  • Only one alarm tone
2
Editor's Choice Product image of Loftie Alarm Clock
Best Upgrade

Loftie Alarm Clock

The Loftie alarm clock makes waking up uber-pleasant with gentle tones, plus it features meditations and more. Read More

Pros

  • Array of alarm sounds
  • Easy to use
  • Bonus features like white noise

Cons

  • Expensive
3
Editor's Choice Product image of LittleHippo Mella
Best Alarm Clock for Kids

LittleHippo Mella

The Mella works as both an "OK to wake clock" as well as a traditional alarm clock, plus it has a built-in night light and white noise machine. Read More

Pros

  • Easy to set
  • Loud alarm
  • Built-in white noise machine

Cons

  • No option for different alarm schedules
4
Product image of i-box Dawn

i-box Dawn

The i-box Dawn alarm is well-made, but somewhat difficult to use. Read More

Pros

  • High-quality
  • Unobtrusive display

Cons

  • Hard to use
5
Product image of iHome iBT235 Powerclock

iHome iBT235 Powerclock

The iHome alarm clock is a high-quality option, though it lacks the versatility of our top picks. Read More

Pros

  • Good backup battery
  • High-quality

Cons

  • Only two alarm settings

For better or worse, alarm clocks (or smartphones with alarms) probably won’t be disappearing from our bedside tables anytime soon. It’s not a matter of loving them, but learning to live with them at this point.

We looked at some of the most popular alarms and definitively determine which are the best, and why. Loftie (available at Amazon) came out on top of our rankings, and we elected it as our best upgrade pick, as its cost may raise some eyebrows. Otherwise, you can’t go wrong with the DreamCaster by Sharp (available at Bed Bath & Beyond), which has a reasonable price and a huge selection of features—including white noise—to give you a ton of bang for your buck. If you have little ones at home, our parenting team also checked out the best alarm clocks for kids and named the LittleHippo Mella (available at Amazon) as their top pick.

Editor's Note

The recommendations in this guide are based on thorough product and market research by our team of expert product reviewers. The picks are based on examining user reviews, product specifications, and, in some limited cases, our experience with the specific products named.

the sharp alarm on a bedside table with a work
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

The Sharp DreamCaster has ample features and a price that will make it appealing for most.

Best Overall
Sharp DreamCaster

During testing, the Sharp DreamCaster was the first alarm clock that felt more substantive and, to be frank, easier to set up and navigate than any of the others. It’s intuitive start to finish, from changing the time to setting the alarm.

Rather than mashing buttons for several minutes, the clock relies on a dial atop the body. It makes changing time and setting alarms a breeze. Though the dial may not be the most attractive design choice, it drastically improves the device’s functionality. If you plan to regularly change the alarm time or other settings, this pick could make your life a little easier. The display can also be dimmed, making it sleep-friendly.

An impressive array of white noise features also set the Sharp apart. There’s plenty of settings to use in the evening and throughout the night to help drown out noises that could otherwise disturb your slumber. It was a unique feature that many other clocks we tried lacked entirely. There are six tracks, ranging from various tones of white noise to rain noise and the ocean.

While waking up with the Sharp wasn’t a particularly life-changing experience, it does its job—and then some. A selection of volumes will be ample for most people, though it’s equipped with just one alarm tone, a fairly standard beeping that wasn’t as unpleasant as others we tested.

My only gripe was that I initially set the alarm to PM, unknowingly. For two days, it chimed at 8:40 PM—fortunately I was home, so I was able to turn it off. Less fortunately, it didn’t wake me up the first morning I used it. From there, it was smooth sailing.

Pros

  • Easy to use

  • Good selection of volumes

  • White noise feature

Cons

  • Only one alarm tone

the loftie alarm next to a phone with the alarm app open
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

The Loftie's interface is super easy to use.

Best Upgrade
Loftie Alarm Clock

I tested the Loftie last, as it was the most expensive option and has a bit of hype from fans online. I was expecting it would be too good to be true. Plus, I couldn’t imagine spending more than $100 on an alarm clock—it seemed outlandish. Then I tried it out.

The very first morning, I opened my eyes and thought to myself that this is what waking up should be. It wasn't more than a minute or two before my phone was in hand, and I was researching how to procure my own Loftie. (We don’t keep products we test, and I didn’t want to even think about a morning without the device.)

The clock stands out for its attention to detail, smooth and intuitive interface, great design, and, of course, the phenomenal experience of waking up with it. The alarm wakes you up with two components. It starts with soft music to gently rouse you. Then, just shy of 10 minutes later, the “get-up tone” goes off. It’s also a calming and soothing experience, with a repetitive note that’s designed to get your attention. There’s several options for both of these alarms, and you can choose them directly on the device or through a mobile app that’s connected through Bluetooth.

The Loftie alarm has a tremendous volume range, and because the alarm tones aren’t blaring beeps, even at the loudest setting it isn’t a painful experience. (Don’t get me wrong, at the highest setting it’s still loud.) The alarm has a bunch of other features, too, that make it more worth the money, including a selection of white noise tracks, meditations, and bedtime stories. The company periodically adds new tracks, and you’ll be prompted to update the device through Wi-Fi when it does.

Finally, there’s a subtle built-in light that can gently illuminate your nightstand if you find yourself waking up to go to the bathroom. You can even program it to come on to subtly cue that it’s time to start your nighttime routine.

Pros

  • Array of alarm sounds

  • Easy to use

  • Bonus features like white noise

Cons

  • Expensive

An alarm clock sitting on a bedside table with a child's hand on top.
Credit: Reviewed / Lisa Lawrence

The Little Hippo Mella consistently worked to rouse even our sleepiest testers.

Best Alarm Clock for Kids
LittleHippo Mella

For an alarm clock that really can do it all, you can't beat the LittleHippo Mella. This is the clock that can take you from the toddler years through the big kid years and will likely only be retired once your teenager deems it no longer cool.

Aside from its cuteness quotient, the Mella has a lot going for it. It works as both an "OK to wake clock" as well as a traditional alarm clock, it has a built-in night light and white noise machine, and it was simple to set and easy to snooze. While it can be tempting to buy a kids' clock that serves just one purpose—either to help them wake up or keep them in bed, depending on the sleep issue you're facing—having a multi-functional clock like the Mella is far more practical in the long run.

One of the biggest reasons the Mella impressed us is because it is the only kids’ alarm clock we tested that was consistently loud enough to wake kids out of a deep slumber. It wasn’t significantly louder than the other alarms, but something about the tone made it the best choice for waking kids up and getting them out of bed in time for an early school drop-off.

Pros

  • Easy to set

  • Loud alarm

  • Built-in white noise machine

Cons

  • No option for different alarm schedules

Product image of i-box Dawn
i-box Dawn

This alarm felt like a little tank when I first removed it from the box. It’s got a sturdy, high-quality build that feels as though it will hold up well over time. The display has a small but adequate range of brightness settings, ensuring it won’t disturb you in the evenings if the display is active. We opted for a dark gray model that features an orange display, as that family of colors is more sleep-friendly than cooler tones. You can also set alarms to wake you with beeping or FM radio. The clock supports two different alarms.

Despite its nice build, I found it difficult to operate. Ultimately, this is what prevented it from nabbing one of our top spots. I had to consult the manual almost immediately after taking it out, as it was impossible to gather how to change the time, let alone turn on the alarm. Fortunately, the manual is clear, and the alarm is fairly easy to use once it’s set up. While this product didn’t transform my mornings, it is a solid choice.

Pros

  • High-quality

  • Unobtrusive display

Cons

  • Hard to use

Product image of iHome iBT235 Powerclock
iHome iBT235 Powerclock

The iHome Alarm has a more traditional build than many of the others, harkening back to early alarms with a circular shape and spindly legs to prop it up. I was impressed by its quality. However, the alarm has limited options when it comes to volumes and tones. You can only set two alarms on the clock, giving you one choice for weekdays and another for the weekend—and the volume range was the smallest of all the alarms we tested. This may prove limiting for folks like me who have an incredibly erratic schedule and like to have 50-plus alarm times to choose from.

The iHome comes with a surprisingly effective backup battery, too. After I unplugged it, I forgot to turn off the alarm for a couple days, and it never failed to go off each day around 4:00 PM (the time I’d set the alarm for the sake of volume testing in lab). We don’t think you can go wrong with it, though the DreamCaster and Loftie have a lot more versatility.

Pros

  • Good backup battery

  • High-quality

Cons

  • Only two alarm settings

Product image of Jall Wooden Alarm Clock
Jall Digital Alarm Clock

From an appearance standpoint, this is one of my favorite alarms of the bunch. (Though don't go thinking it's real wood—it certainly didn't feel real to me.) It’s subtle, with just enough details to make it functional. The display, which can be dimmed, shines through the veneer. Unlike most of the alarms we tested, it even included some bonus features, like the option to display temperature and humidity on the face.

The clock has an option to use three different alarms and toggle them on or off, or set them to a schedule. So if you want to run a few alarms depending on if it’s a weekday or the weekend, it allows for that. With five volume settings, the range is narrower than that of many others we tested.

Pros

  • Appealing design

  • Three alarm options

Cons

  • Limited volume range

Product image of PPLEE Alarm Clock with Bed Shaker
PPLEE Alarm Clock with Bed Shaker

If you're looking for an alarm with a big display, this may be the best option of the lot. However, the PPLEE alarm feels cheap. It’s very easy to use, despite having far more buttons than you'd ever think an alarm could need. They’re clearly labeled, which makes it easier to know what’s what, but it still felt like an unnecessary number of controls. Unfortunately, it also requires you to look at the back of the clock to know exactly which button you're pushing and what the result will be.

There is one feature that really sets it apart from other alarms in this roundup, and that is the bed shaker. This small disk of plastic connects to the alarm and rests under your pillow or bed. It uses movement to wake deep sleepers or those who may not rouse with the regular alarm. We didn’t test it and Amazon reviewers don't specify whether it works well.

Pros

  • Comes with bed shaker

  • Easy to use

Cons

  • Too many buttons

  • Cheap feel

What You Need to Know About Alarm Clocks

the top of the sharp alarm with a knob
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

Some alarms include features like white noise.

Alarm clocks are arguably less essential with the invention of smartphones, but as the sleep writer, I’d contend that they’re still an important nightstand fixture—especially if you’re concerned with your sleep quality and trying to avoid having your phone in the bedroom.

Alarm clocks have been popular for several centuries, though they became widely used in the U.S. in the early 1800s, likely in conjunction with the industrial revolution, says Ken De Lucca, the director of education at the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors (NAWCC). That’s because the revolution led to a need for people to be at a certain place (cough, cough—work) at a given time.

Fortunately, choosing an alarm clock isn’t as involved as choosing a mattress in many ways. While having the right alarm clock can make your mornings a better experience, it’s not likely to have a lasting effect. Waking with a start from an obnoxious alarm could kick your fight-or-flight response into gear, but it won’t define the rest of your day.

Selecting an alarm with soothing tones that lull you from deep sleep into wakefulness, however, could prove more pleasant and an easier start to your day.

It can also be good to choose alarms with red displays as opposed to cold colors such as green, blue, or white. That’s because red light is less likely to disrupt your sleep than cooler tones. The disruption comes with the light’s wavelength. Shorter wavelengths, including blue tones, tend to suppress melatonin more than warmer colors like red and orange.

Meet the tester

Lindsey Vickers

Lindsey Vickers

Senior Staff Writer, Sleep

@lindseyvix

Lindsey writes about sleep, lifestyle, and more for Reviewed. In her waking hours, she likes to spend time outside, read, cook, and bake. She holds a master’s in journalism from Boston University and bachelors' degrees in English Literature and Anthropology from the University of Utah.

See all of Lindsey Vickers's reviews

Checking our work.

Our team is here for one purpose: to help you buy the best stuff and love what you own. Our writers, editors, and lab technicians obsess over the products we cover to make sure you're confident and satisfied. Have a different opinion about something we recommend? Email us and we'll compare notes.

Shoot us an email