Sound is one of the most popular ways to aid our sleep. It captures our imagination and transports us to a different space all together. Audio can lull us into a relaxed state, mask out any unwanted noise, or kick-start our day when we need it most.
And yet, no single sound fits all. Some of us prefer ambient escapes to doze off to, whilst others snooze to the sound of storms. Someone might leap out of bed to the sound of a single alarm and others may take a full playlist of jams to get up and go. That’s why, here at Kokoon, we’ve curated Staff Pick Playlists to help you find the sounds you need, show off the sounds we listen to most with our Kokoons, and explain just why these sounds are so great for us to get the zzz’s we need.
Tim, our CEO used to have insomnia; it’s why Kokoon was born in the first place. And now, as a new dad, he’s seeing 4am more often, once again. His playlist takes you through a gentle soundtrack landscape, both mysterious and a little moody, but relaxing and distracting from outside noises, to send you back off to sleep when your night has been disturbed.
Research shows that classical music, just like Tim’s soundtracks, help us to sleep better. We find comfort in repeating themes or harmonies within music - often found in classical compositions. (1) Plus, research has shown that music with lower BPMs - that’s beats per minute - can assist in slowing our heart rate. (2) The most beneficial slow tempos to lull us into a state of rest and relaxation? You guessed it: Classical. (3)
Corm is our Lead App Developer, and has needed music to keep him distracted from outside sounds since he was younger. Growing up in a noisy house in Ireland, he always used music to mask out sounds and help him focus, work, or get to sleep. “Music always takes me to another space,” he says, “enhancing whatever I’m trying to do.” His mix combines his love for folk, jazz, and downtempo electronica, with this playlist being his current choice for heading to bed in his Kokoons.
It’s not disrupting sounds themselves that wake you up - or keep you up - because they are loud, but rather, changes in sound consistency. (4) Ambient sound emphasises tone and atmosphere over traditional structure and rhythm, creating a blanket effect of textural layers, keeping out any unwanted auditory changes and sleep disturbances.
As an ultra runner and Kokoon’s Project Manager, Hannah has her hands - and days - full. She’s no stranger to early mornings and this playlist gets her up and out of bed and kickstarting her day when the coffee alone just won’t do.
Whilst Tim’s playlist has a lower BPM, matching that of a resting heart rate, science shows that Hannah’s tracks bump up your BPM, getting the blood pumping, jolting you out of that sleep state, and ready for a get-up-and-go kind of day. (5)
Becca keeps the visual art for Kokoon ticking over - but spends her free time deep in manuscripts and talking with academics about old American poetry (self-proclaimed nerd). She needs some big jams to keep her going - but not distract her too much from the task at hand. That’s why her playlist is packed with big symphonies, bold brass and dramatic crescendos, to keep her focused and motivated when she needs it most.
Studies have shown that particular areas of the brain are activated by listening to music; by combining higher-tempo classical (to keep her resting pulse above that sleepy zone) with uplifting brass and funk, and minimal amounts of distracting repetitive rhythms, Becca reckons she’s nailed the perfect combo.
Science has also shown that building a music-listening habit before bed helps you sleep even better. (6) It’s like working a muscle group repeatedly at the gym: by ensuring that you listen to the same playlist every day before you sleep you strengthen your ability to induce relaxation.
Save our playlists, and start your journey to better sleep today.