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11 best nightlights to help your kid fall and stay asleep

Whether your child is afraid of the dark or just needs a little bit of light to help them find the bathroom, these provide the perfect amount of glow

Give your kids a little more bedtime confidence with a trusty lamp ( iStockphoto/The Independent )

Sleep – lack of, how to enforce it, how to prolong it and how to ensure the best quality of the stuff - is pretty high on the priority list for most parents. 

Night lights can be a huge help for little ones who resist sleeping, are afraid of the dark or who might need help locating their beaker or the way to the bathroom in the middle of the night. 

It is worth noting that experts believe the best possible way for a child to sleep is in complete pitch darkness – as this encourages melanin to do its work and send us all off to the land of nod, but, as detailed above, sometimes the reality isn’t the ideal. 

A good nightlight will omit a very dim, soft light. It should glow not beam! It will be easy for adults and children alike to turn on and off and perhaps even shut off by itself thanks to a timer.

If a night light doesn’t offer a timer, we recommend turning a nightlight off once your child is asleep. 

Ideally a night light will look cute in a little one’s nursery and be something that they see as being a positive part of bedtime.

Portability is key – we were particularly impressed with those that could easily be taken on holiday. 

You can trust our independent reviews. We may earn commission from some of the retailers, but we never allow this to influence selections, which are formed from real-world testing and expert advice. This revenue helps us to fund journalism across The Independent.

Meemoobaby nightlight: £44.99, Cheeky Rascals 

This is a game changer for dream feeding or middle-of-the-night nappy changes. This small light is wearable, so there’s no faffing about with iPhone torches or cracking the door open just so. The light is dimmable so you’re in control of how bright you want it to be. The light quality is soft and golden – and designed to minimise stimulating blue light. 

We found this easy to assemble and wear – and during an 11pm nappy change, the light was a huge help without startling our dozy toddler. We also appreciated how small the whole set up is. You can fit the whole light into the palm of your hand. When night feeding is no longer on your agenda, the light can live in the nursery to be used as a regular nightlight. 

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Groegg 2 nightlight: £23.99, The Gro Company

This is the souped up version of the already brilliant original nightlight-cum-room-thermometer which changes colour according to temperature. But the Groegg 2 is even more brilliant. The silicone egg is over a third larger than the original, softer to the touch (it’s actually rather squashy!) and the digital thermometer is easier to read. The night light is gentle and can be adjusted to one of four levels of intensity – the lowest being ambient and mellow. Can be powered by the mains or USB. We found this easy to operate – and pack up for travelling. 

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Lello little star wall nightlight: £25, Kidly

Small, portable and cute, this star shaped light looks and feels soft, even when fully lit up. We absolutely loved that this was wall mountable and could be easily operated by little people – one tap is for full light, two for half light and three to turn it off. The light will fade automatically after an hour – good news for battery life and for parents who might forget to go in and do it manually. 

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Litecup nightlight: £9.99, Litecup

Half sippy cup, half night light – this non-spill beaker with integrated night light is some serious design genius. Gone will be the nights of “WANT WATER” breaking through the 4am silence. The light lets them locate their drink immediately and when our two-year-old tester was not imbibing, she was comforted by the glow from her cup. The Litecup comes in three difference sizes – Litecup Baby (200ml) which includes an attachable strap, a Little Litecup (250ml) and a Regular Litecup (330ml) for bigger kids. Easy to clean and perfect for travel.

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Walkabout lantern nightlight: £25, Kidly

A modern take on a pre-electricity staple. This lantern is powered by battery and offers a low, illuminating glow from an LED bulb that can either be low and pulsating or static. This is ideal for toddlers who are potty training and need to make a middle-of-the-night journey to the bathroom. The handle is sturdy and easy to hold while the lantern itself is light. Our three-year-old loved the “one tap” function: all it takes to turn the lantern on and off is a tight touch to the top. However, there is an auto switch which means it can turn off by itself. There is a sense of the theatrical about the lantern too, which makes it fun and playful rather than just solidly functional. Perfectly portable. 

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Bedbug nightlight: £59.95, Lumie

The Bedbug boasts a spectrum of fully changeable lighting – from sharp, bright light to cosy sleepy fuzz. It contains almost none of the blue light which is the most stimulating. Our two-year-old tester was thrilled with the “sunset” feature which echoes a real sunset – the light fading as the sun does, dipping into blackness – and sleep. However, if you’d prefer a nightlight on all night, you can adjust the settings accordingly and the Bedbug will glow a low orange all night long.

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Infantino night pal nightlight: £14.99, Amazon

Calming and cute – we really rated how this was soft and tactile, as much of a huggable cuddly toy as anything else. It’s also much bigger than the image suggests, so will feel really reassuring to little ones who might need extra comfort when learning to sleep by themselves. The light is glowing and comes in a rainbow of colours. There is even a colour spectrum switch to allow children to choose whichever colour they’d like. The intensity of the light’s brightness can be easily altered. There is also a really sweet musical element: three different melodies play as well as natural sounds which promote sleep. Our tester, at 16 months was thrilled to have a bedfellow but play was short as the whales sleepy inducing properties worked their magic. 

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Cookie the cat nightlight: £8.95, Rex London

This little rotund kitty is surprisingly tactile, with a soft, matte finish. Its light is a dim glow of dark blue and can be easily turned off by a small switch on its underside. This would make for a lovely gift – the packaging boasts a list of fun cat facts on the outside. 

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Infantino 3-in1 musical soother and night light projector nightlight: £25.99, Argos

This is actually much bigger in reality than you might think having just looked at the pictures.Not only is it appealing to look at – colourful and fun – it also works very hard too. The projections it boasts are soft, soothing cloud and star shapes and lulled our two-year-old tester off into his dreams within ten minutes. There are two different light displays – one is fixed towards the ceiling and the other moves as the fox’s tail moves. The music is slow and gentle – and lasts 20 minutes, as does the main light. We loved that there are two parts – the larger fox which is the source of the projections and music, and the smaller, curled up baby which is a removable light and can be moved around the room. 

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Personalised white cloud nightlight: £16, My 1st Years 

Simple and sweet with a smiling sleepy face on one side – this night light is small and without any bells or whistles. The light is soft and comforting, however. You can opt to have it personalised, which is an extra cute touch and perfect for gifts. 

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Aloka colour & shine nightlight: From £25, Cheeky Rascals 

This is a pretty awesome light – which doubles up as a toy. Little ones have the chance to customise their own night light – over and over again. The light comes with five bright dry-erase pens which are to be used on the back of the light. However, parents who favour a paired back, low key or muted aesthetic are unlikely to be thrilled as the look of the Aloka is slightly gaudy.

The light itself is versatile, beaming out different colours all of which are easily dimmable. Our three-year-old tester was utterly enchanted with the princess version of the Aloka, who was richly and abstracted shaded in pinks and purples. The fact that it can be wiped away cleanly is awesome. The remote control is a brilliant touch for smaller kids who seem drawn to them – to this multi-coloured gadget is received with utter delight. 

You can set the light to one colour or let it cycle through all 12. This is fun, versatile and serves so many purposes, it’s a bit of a bargain really. 

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The verdict: Nightlights

 It’s got to be the Meemoobaby – it’s so small, but all powerful, easily portable and will last and last from those early nights of multiple wakings, into toddlerhood and beyond. 

IndyBest product reviews are unbiased, independent advice you can trust. On some occasions, we earn revenue if you click the links and buy the products, but we never allow this to bias our coverage. The reviews are compiled through a mix of expert opinion and real-world testing.

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