Daylight Savings Time starts on March 8th, which means it’ll be just a little bit harder to get out of bed (at least for the first few days, anyway). Alas, we all have stuff to do and oversleeping is never a good thing. But if you’re not in the group of people who likes loud noises blaring in your ear (does such a group even exist?), there other, more … innovative options.
While some of these modern alarm clocks can gently wake you up with subtle light that imitates a sunrise, others literally make you get out of bed and perform some sort of action. Like stepping on a rug. Or, um, chasing the clock around the room. Yep.
A Pleasant Awakening: Philips HF3520 Wake-Up Light
Wake-Up lights are what many turn to when searching for an alarm clock alternative, and for good reason. These lights gradually light up and dim down to both make waking up and falling asleep a more pleasant and natural experience.
In the morning, the Wake-Up will simulate the rising sun at your selected time and the glowing light is bright enough to send the “wake up already” message to your brain. The Wake-Up light can also play some ambient noise like birds chirping to make sure your morning starts off right.
Philips also included some great additional features. The Wake-Up can detect ambient light and auto-adjust its light accordingly. This can help to make sure the light isn’t too jarring. And, the Wake-Up will save your alarm in the device’s memory for up to 8 hours, so even in the case of a power outage, your Wake-Up light will still activate on time.
If you need something besides loud noise to get you out of bed in the morning, and don’t want to hate whatever is resting on your nightstand, the Wake-Up light is a fantastic option.
It should be noted that, eventually, the bulb inside the Wake-Up will die—and you can’t replace it. Many customers report using their Wake-Up lights for years without the bulb dying, but it is still important to know.
Philips SmartSleep Wake-up Light, Colored Sunrise and Sunset Simulation, 5 Natural Sounds, FM Radio & Reading Lamp, Tap Snooze, HF3520/60
A pleasant, more natural way to wake up in the morning.
A Budget Awakening: LBell Wake-Up Light
If you’re on a tighter budget but still want something similar to the Wake-Up light, LBell is your best bet. It makes a very similar product also called the Wake-Up light, and it retails for about half the price.
Obviously that price comes with some tradeoffs—it’s missing a few features, like auto-adjustments based on ambient light. And, generally, many of the transitions between different light modes are much less smooth than Philips’ offering, which can seem jarring.
If you want to save money and don’t mind a less refined product compared to Philips’ Wake-Up light, LBell’s version is perfectly fine and will still grant many of the same features.
Again, it should be noted that, eventually, the lightbulb inside the Wake-Up light will die and it is not replaceable.
Wake Up Light Sunrise Alarm Clock, LBell Clock Radio, 7 Colored Night Light, Sunrise Simulation & Sleep Aid, Dual Alarm with FM, 7 Natural Sounds and Snooze for Kids Adults Bedrooms
While it is missing some features, this light will give you a similar morning experience as Philip's.
Annoying and Adorable: Clocky Alarm Clock
On most devices, the snooze button is easy to push—maybe a little too easy. That’s not the case with Clocky, the alarm clock on wheels. Clocky really wants to make sure you’re out of bed on time, and it’s much more annoying than the charming exterior might lead you to think.
When it comes time, Clocky starts blaring a loud noise much like other alarm clocks. But instead of just sitting there, it will drive straight off the nightstand and start zooming around the room. It won’t shut up until you get out of bed and make it. And, Clocky doesn’t just drive off in a straight line; while it’s not particularly good at avoiding obstacles, it will turn, change direction, and just generally go wherever it can to make your morning more eventful.
You can set a one-time snooze so Clocky’s alarm with go off without it driving away, but after the snooze period Clocky will still start driving. It should also be noted that Clocky is only 3.5 inches tall, so you might want to double-check that it won’t be able to get stuck under any of your furniture. That could be extra annoying.
Clocky is available in six colors: black, blue, chrome, pink, red, and white.
CLOCKY Alarm Clock on Wheels (Original) | Extra Loud for Heavy Sleeper (Adult or Kid Bedroom Robot Clockie) Funny, Rolling, Run-Away, Moving, Jumping (Black)
A clock on the run, Clocky won't shut up until you catch up with him.
Rise and Shine: Ruggie Alarm Clock
If you just want something to get you out of bed without requiring a chase, the Ruggie should suit you better. It’s pretty simple: you set the time you want to wake up, the alarm will blare, and you need to stand on the Ruggie for an adjustable amount of time before it shuts off. It makes sure you’re out of bed before the noise stops, which is great because actually getting out of bed is the hardest part of the morning for most.
It’s worth noting that it can be pretty sensitive when it comes to detecting weight, with even something like a fallen blanket being able to turn it off. So, if you do end up using the Ruggie, you should put it somewhere where nothing can fall on it accidentally (or be easily thrown onto it).
The Ruggie is available in three colors: blue, grey, and white.
Ruggie Alarm Clock - The Original Rug Carpet Alarm Clock - Digital Display, Battery Operated, Nature Sounds - Advance Design for Modern Home, Kids, Teens, Girls, Guys and Heavy Sleepers (Grey)
The Ruggie demands you get out of bed before it stops its alarm.
The Nuclear Option: Sonic Bomb
This is an option only recommended for the heaviest of heavy sleepers. The Sonic Bomb makes noise, vibrates your entire bed, and will even start flashing lights at you all in the name of making sure you get up on time.
While for many it could be seen as overkill (or evil), if you really need to make sure you’re up at a specific time and normal alarm clocks just don’t cut it, it may be necessary. All of the features are togglable and adjustable using buttons and dials on the Sonic Bomb, so you can set it to the exact amount of annoying you need.
The Sonic Bomb is available in black and red, black and blue, blue, pink, red, and camouflage.
Sonic Bomb Dual Extra Loud Alarm Clock with Bed Shaker, Black | Sonic Alert Vibrating Alarm Clock Heavy Sleepers, Battery Backup | Wake with a Shake
For the heavy sleepers, the Sonic Bomb can be just as annoying as you need it to be.
Shake to Wake: iLuv Smartshaker
iLuv’s Smartshaker is a sleek device you place under your pillow, and in the morning it will shake your head to wake you up . It’s simple but effective.
The strength and time are adjustable via an app (for iOS or Android) and the device has a pretty good battery life lasting for about 10 days, meaning you won’t have to worry about plugging it in every day. It does also have an audible alarm if you need it.
The Smartshaker is available in black or white.
iLuv Smartshaker 2 Portable Travel Bed Shaker Alarm Clock Heavy Sleepers, Vibrating Travel Alarm Bed Shaker - Compatible iPhone X/Xs, iPhone 8/8 Plus, Galaxy Note 9/8, Galaxy S9/S8
Simple but effective, this little disc will shake you awake.