The best alarm clocks for heavy sleepers in 2024

If you sleep like a rock, become a little more early bird than night owl with an alarm clock made for your sleep style.

Best overall

A Sonic Bomb alarm clock on a blue and white background

Sonic Bomb Dual Extra Loud Alarm Clock with Bed Shaker

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Best without waking roommates

A purple and black Pavloc Shock Clock 3 alarm clock on a plain background.

Pavlok Shock Clock 3

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Best budget

A gold alarm clock on a blue and white background

Peakeep Twin Bell Alarm Clock

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You can’t just use an alarm clock when you’re a heavy sleeper. You need one that is the sonic equivalent of getting dragged out of bed and thrown into a cold pond. It can’t be too loud, however, since you most likely have neighbors or roommates who you want to be respectful of. We’re not expecting you to be the most bright-eyed and bushy-tailed person in the room first thing in the morning—we just want you not to miss a meeting because you slept through your phone alarm again. Fall and winter can be particularly challenging for deep sleepers, and snoozing repeatedly may provide short sleep satisfaction but leave you drowsy during the day. The best alarm clocks for heavy sleepers will get you up and at ’em and ready for your day.

How we chose the best alarm clocks for heavy sleepers

I’m a heavy sleeper who is prone to snoozing too much. I have had full conversations with people in my sleep without remembering them and have missed many a nighttime raging summer storm. Besides being a very capable and willing human guinea pig, I’ve also covered life-hack gadgets for Gear Patrol and PopSci, among others. With that in mind, I combined personal experience with critical reviews, peer recommendations, and user impressions in our quest for the best alarm clocks for heavy sleepers.

The best alarm clocks for heavy sleepers: Reviews & Recommendations

It’s time to admit and accept that even the best app and phone alarm may not be enough for some to get out of bed. And that’s okay—plenty of people struggle with waking up. Here is what we found in our search for the most effective alarms for heavy sleepers. 

Best overall: Sonic Bomb Dual Extra Loud Alarm Clock with Bed Shaker

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Why it made the cut: Nothing wakes you up like a serving of 113 decibels with a side of vibration and strobes.

Specs

  • Dimensions: 10.23 x 20.46 x 15.35 inches
  • Display type: Digital
  • Wake-up method: Alarm, vibration
  • Power source: AC adapter with battery back-up

Pros

  • Combines loud noise with vibration
  • Adjustable display dimmer
  • Red flashing strobe lights

Cons

  • Will wake up others in the house

If the Sonic Bomb doesn’t wake you, you might need to talk to a doctor. Assuming you could ever wake up enough to go see a doctor. The alarm rings at a pounding 113dB max—that’s just as loud as a rock concert (though volume/duration are adjustable if you’re not quite ready for an arena-level alert). If you’re looking for a relaxing sunrise alarm, this is not it: Red strobes nail in the point that you need to wake up. If you need another layer of rousing, the Sonic Bomb comes with a bed shaker that can be placed between your mattress and box spring or under a pillow for some classic shake-til-awake. And trust us: the vibrations are intense and difficult to sleep through. You can even record a personalized message to your sleepy morning self to wake up. An adjustable display dimmer makes it so you sleep soundly when the lights are off since excess light can make it harder to sleep. If you are looking for a heavy-duty alarm clock that combines multiple ways to wake up, this is it.

Best vibrating: Roxicosly Vibrating Alarm Clock for Heavy Sleepers

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Why it made the cut: Choose from standalone vibration or wake up with an alarm-bed shaker double whammy. 

Specs

  • Dimensions: 6.82 x 1.5 x 3.39 inches
  • Display type: Digital
  • Wake-up method: Alarm, vibration
  • Power source: AC outlet with a backup battery

Pros

  • Large digital screen
  • Built-in USB-A port
  • Four levels of volume

Cons

  • Vibration shakes entire bed

I personally have very clear memories of my mom walking into my room to shake me awake. But I am a grown adult who lives four hours away from her childhood home, so I can no longer rely on a parent to wake me up. The Roxicosly Vibrating Alarm Clock can be your parental stand-in if you are in the same boat. Simply place the disk-like vibrating bed shaker between your mattress and box spring or under your pillow, set your alarm, and enter a borderline coma. You can choose between bed shaker, an alarm, or a combo to wake you from your deep sleep. And the vibrating disk has a 71-inch cord, meaning you have enough room to place the alarm clock far enough to walk to turn it off. All that’s missing from this alarm clock is a warm hug and scrambling to find a Mother’s Day card.

Best to not wake roommates: Pavloc Shock Clock 3

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Why it made the cut: Break your snooze habit with this wristband that wakes you up silently with a sequence of vibrations or zaps. 

Specs

  • Dimensions: 6.81 x 4.65 x 1.46 inches
  • Display type: N/A
  • Wake-up method: Vibration
  • Power source: Battery

Pros

  • Connected app with sleep-tracking
  • Helps break the habit of snoozing
  • No snooze

Cons

  • Very powerful at even 50 percent power

If you’re a heavy sleeper but live in group housing—whether with your family or roommates—multiple loud alarms can cause some divides. Since it’s a shared space, you want to be as respectful as possible, especially when it comes to not interrupting people’s sleep. Maybe you’ve tried the haptic alarm on your Apple Watch, but it’s not enough. Enter the Shock Clock, a wearable alarm clock that uses vibrations, zaps, or chimes to wake you up. And, this thing has no snooze—the only way to turn it off is by completing some jumping jacks, solving a puzzle or riddle, or taking a picture of a QR code in another room—talk about getting up and staying up. Despite being a hard sleeper, go easy on the Shock Clock settings when getting used to it. It’s very powerful, and getting zapped at 100 percent … is intense. Trust us. But, if you’d like to free yourself from the snooze overlords without making too much of a ruckus, you’ll be Pavlov’d by the Shock Clock. This vibrating wrist alarm is also perfect for someone who is hard of hearing or Deaf. Everyone deserves the opportunity to wake up at the same time every day!

Best for very heavy sleepers: CLOCKY Alarm Clock on Wheels

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Why it made the cut: You can only snooze once with this alarm clock, which jumps from your nightstand and rolls around if you don’t shut it off.

Specs

  • Dimensions: 5.25 x 3.5 x 3.5 inches
  • Display type: Digital
  • Wake-up method: Alarm, movement
  • Power source: 4 AAAA batteries (not included)

Pros

  • Limited times to snooze
  • Gets you out of bed
  • Durable

Cons

  • Annoying

Much like McGruff the Crime Dog, sometimes you need a cartoon character to motivate you. Meet Clocky, a crazy little guy who entered this world in 2006 thanks to Gauri Nanda, who was attending MIT at the time. Her plight is similar to many heavy sleepers: snoozing too many times, sleeping through alarms, missing classes. You’re only allowed to snooze once with this alarm clock with wheels. If you don’t shut him off before shutdown, he will leap up to 3 feet from your nightstand and roll away, leaving you to catch him. This gets you out of bed and will keep you out of bed. If you are especially not a morning person—and waking you up is like poking a sleeping bear—you can disable Clocky’s wheels and use it like a regular alarm clock so you don’t smash it into the wall out of anger when it rolls away. This rolling alarm clock is durable, but don’t push his limits … or yours.

Best sunrise alarm clock: Hatch Restore 2

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Why it made the cut: Like gentle parenting for your circadian rhythm. 

Specs

  • Dimensions: 7.24 x 2.43 x 5.31 inches
  • Display type: Digital
  • Wake-up method: Soft noises, light
  • Power source: AC outlet

Pros

  • Lots of colors and white noises to choose from
  • Includes sleep alerts to help you wind down
  • Helps with sleep hygiene

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Needs a phone to control it

I’m the kind of person who scares easily, meaning a loud noise rousing me out of slumber is … not ideal. I also can’t sleep if it’s too light outside, but I can’t wake up without light. Enter the Hatch Restore 2, a sunrise alarm clock that uses a very bright light and nature sounds over loud noise and vibration to wake you up.

Unlike the Loftie smart alarm clock—which requires a separate lamp for true sunrise alarm clock capabilities—the Hatch Restore 2 can be used as a lamp and sound machine. I love the large Rest and Rise buttons. The recessed Rest button kicks off your wind-down routine—which can also be scheduled in-app to happen automatically—while the raised Rise button turns off the alarm. You can set mood lighting and play some white noise when you’re already risen or not quite ready to rest.

The Hatch is also the most stylish thing to grace my nightstand. The cloth elements on the face and back give some texture and luxurious tactility, and I love that it comes in colors other than basic black. I’m sporting Putty, an off-white, but the other two colors are just as pretty: Latte is a warm khaki color, and Slate is a cool blue-green. Hatch makes it simple with a toggle on the side if I want to turn off all alarms.

The app is robust, even without a Hatch+ subscription. I can access all colors of the rainbow and important sleep sounds like “morning singing bowls.” I didn’t even know bowls could do that. I don’t need bedtime stories or sleep guidance, but you get both with the $4.99/month or $49.99/year Hatch+ subscription. I do lose some functionality if the app and clock aren’t communicating, however. This is to say, I wish there was more functionality without your phone.

You see, my Hatch—along with my Loftie smart alarm clock—didn’t always do what they’re made to do: Sound an alarm. I couldn’t tell if it was my app or me, but one thing I could tell is that such an expensive device should be a little more usable when disconnected from the app. Good news: I had great customer service as I worked out my smart alarm clock’s growing pains. While the Hatch Restore is our best splurge and has the best design (which is why it tops our best alarm clocks in general), this Philips alarm clock is a great alternative if you’d like to keep your phone and alarm truly separate.

Best value: Peakeep Twin Bell Alarm Clock

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Why it made the cut: Take it old school with this alarm clock that features an analog face with a classic loud bell. 

Specs

  • Dimensions: 4.5 x 2 x 6.25 inches
  • Display type: Analog
  • Wake-up method: Alarm
  • Power source: Battery

Pros

  • No snooze
  • Loud
  • Aesthetically pleasing
  • No ticking sounds

Cons

  • No snooze

Being a heavy sleeper is painted in … not the best light. Bed head? A pool of spit? Snoring? The slander must stop! Those who can’t wake up deserve to have some aesthetic representation: think nightcap-dressing gown-Honk shoo mimimimimi-Sleepy Time tea vibes. Enter the Peakeep Twin Bell Alarm Clock. This alarm clock doesn’t use vibration to get things going—just the power of a loud bell and the heightened stakes of not having a snooze button. Setting the alarm is just a knob turn away. The hands glow gently in the dark, and there’s no ticking for a peaceful sleep. If you really need to check the time at night, just hold the button on the back for a temporary light. It’s cute, it’s cheap, and it’s loud. What more could you want in an alarm clock?

What to consider when buying an alarm clock for heavy sleepers

Why are people heavy sleepers? It all depends on genetics, lifestyle, and potential for sleep disorders. One study found that those with busier brains were more likely to sleep through loud noises. If you’re unphased by a storm while you sleep, or you’re someone who simply can’t wake up despite multiple phone alarms, there’s a good chance you’d benefit from an alarm clock for heavy sleepers.

According to Kelly Waters, sleep and neurology physician with Corewell Health in Grand Rapids, Mich., the more sensory options you use, the better chances you have of waking up with the chickens.

“For alarm clocks, particularly with heavy sleepers, the more sensory modalities the device engages, the better for activating the brain,” she says. “Options may include bright light, loud noise, vibration, keeping the alarm across the room, or a ‘roaming” alarm clock’ that you have to chase down to shut off.”

How to wake up” is an easy question with complicated answers. Here are the basics of finding a heavy-duty alarm clock that can help give you a valuable solution to the query:

Snoozing and sleep hygiene

Heavy sleepers will know the pain of reaching to hit snooze, turning off the alarm clock completely, and waking up at 11 a.m. feeling like they traveled through another dimension and back. Slamming the snooze button is bad for your health. Plus, the sad truth is you’re not getting much quality sleep in that extra nine minutes. On top of taking steps to improve your sleep hygiene, the best alarm clocks for hard sleepers will make it harder to turn off the alarm accidentally and stop the snooze cycle in its tracks with loud noises.

Waters also suggests keeping a consistent wake and sleep schedule. That means no more sleeping in on the weekends.

“Circadian rhythm training can help, but it is essential to keep consistency,” she says.

Sounds, bed shakers, and light

A sunrise alarm clock mimics the sun’s rising to alert your body to wake up. This is perfect if you use blackout curtains but need to wake up with the light. However, hard sleepers might not be phased by light alone. An especially loud alarm clock, a wearable that vibrates you awake, and bed-shaking capabilities are features to look for in the best alarm clocks for heavy sleepers. Others would consider these alarms annoying, but you must bring out the big guns if you’re a hard sleeper.

Brainwork

Giving your brain some exercise when you wake up can give you that extra little oomph to get to the kitchen and turn on the coffee machine. Per Waters, alarm apps that make you move or complete a problem to turn them off get you out of bed, which makes it easier to start your day. Some crazy alarm clocks for hard sleepers even zoom off your nightstand, making you have to chase them down to turn them off.

Maybe you’ve seen a TikTok or two extolling the benefits of not looking at your phone first thing in the morning. According to Waters, sometimes you can have a little morning screentime to get your brain going and even #treatyoself.

“An email check upon waking can kickstart higher cognitive processing, or listening to a newscast with a clock radio,” she says. “Triggering the brain’s reward pathway can also help: Programming a favorite playlist to listen to, anticipating some enjoyable activity, or having a small reward system for maintaining consistency. These are especially helpful with children who are hard to wake.”

FAQs

Q: How much do alarm clocks for heavy sleepers cost?

The best alarm clocks for heavy sleepers start at $15 and get into the $150 range. An electronic wearable with app connectivity will be more expensive than an analog clock with a loud bell.

Q: How do I wake up without waking my partner?

A silent alarm will let your partner rest easy while you rise. However, as a hard sleeper, you must consider what silent options will get you up. Consider a bed shaker on your side of the bed, headphones for sleeping for alarms right in your ears, or a wrist wearable that uses vibrations to alert you to get up.

Q: Do light alarm clocks work for heavy sleepers?

Yes! In fact, a light alarm clock could be just as beneficial as one that’s very loud. Light alarm clocks help you get in tune with your circadian rhythm, which makes it easier to wake up and fall asleep. If you’re worried about sleeping through the light alarm, find one with sound options, like the Philips SmartSleep Wake-up Light, which has 20 brightness settings.

Q: Is an alarm clock better than a phone alarm?

It depends. I keep my phone away from my bed, which forces me to get up to stop the alarm. I could move my alarm clock, but that doesn’t feel right in my brain. Also, I can’t see the time if my alarm clock is far away. However, I sometimes scroll too close to bedtime, which is not good for getting good zzz’s. A physical alarm clock encourages you to keep the phone out of the bedroom. Since it’s right in arm’s reach, you run the risk of repeat snoozing. Currently, I’m using the Loftie Lamp in conjunction with my phone alarm to wake up. At the end of the day, do what works best for you.

Q: What is the difference between silent and sunrise alarm clocks?

Not all silent alarms are sunrise alarm clocks, and not all sunrise alarm clocks are completely silent. The Shock Clock 3 is silent but uses zaps and vibrations to wake you up. However, you an also add chimes. Even the Sonic Bomb can become a silent alarm clock: Simply turn off the noise and use the vibrating pad. Sunrise alarm clocks can be silent with the right settings.

Final thoughts on the best alarm clocks for heavy sleepers

If you’re a person who needs to move a mountain to rise and shine, consider an alarm clock for heavy sleepers, which takes extra measures to get you awake. Whether through a loud alarm, bed shakers, or a vibrating wristband that makes you do jumping jacks to turn it off, there are plenty of options to prevent sleeping through another alarm. The best alarm clocks for heavy sleepers can help pull the throttle on your day sans hiccups. Your circadian rhythm will thank you.

Why trust us

Popular Science started writing about technology more than 150 years ago. There was no such thing as “gadget writing” when we published our first issue in 1872, but if there was, our mission to demystify the world of innovation for everyday readers means we would have been all over it. Here in the present, PopSci is fully committed to helping readers navigate the increasingly intimidating array of devices on the market right now.

Our writers and editors have combined decades of experience covering and reviewing consumer electronics. We each have our own obsessive specialties—from high-end audio to video games to cameras and beyond—but when we’re reviewing devices outside of our immediate wheelhouses, we do our best to seek out trustworthy voices and opinions to help guide people to the very best recommendations. We know we don’t know everything, but we’re excited to live through the analysis paralysis that internet shopping can spur so readers don’t have to.

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Amanda Reed

Updates Writer

Amanda Reed is a commerce updates writer at Popular Science. She makes sure all product round-ups are up-to-date, shares deals happening all over the internet, and reviews various gizmos and gadgets. She lives in Pittsburgh with JunkJunk, a handsome, sad-looking tuxedo cat who only wants wet food and attention.