Why Does Red Light Help You Sleep?

Why Does Red Light Help You Sleep?

Sometimes I stand outside my house, looking at the bright red light shining through my windows, and ask myself, "Have I gone too far?"

But then I'll wake up the next morning, after a deep, restorative sleep, and I know exactly why I do these things.

Even now as I sit at my desk, the room is illuminated with various sources of red light.

With a red screen on my iPhone (hack yours here) and laptop (Iris Software), a MyLight Midi in the background, and some Pavarotti music (optional), I know I am guaranteed some extremely powerful sleep tonight.

Red screen

How Does Light Affect The Quality Of Your Sleep?

You've probably heard that artificial light at night can negatively impact your sleep quality. This primarily comes from the blue wavelengths of light, which are able to signal 'day time' to your brain. This results in an increase in cortisol (stress hormone) and a decrease in melatonin (sleep hormone).

The result = a poor night's sleep!

Some other colours can have this effect too, when the light intensity is high enough, but none more so than blue.

One study found that melatonin was drastically decreased when humans were exposed to bright blue or green light, but not to bright red or dim lights.

So Why Would Red Light Not Impact Your Sleep Quality?

If you think of it from an evolutionary standpoint, our ancestors would have been exposed to red light during the day AND night. They would make a fire during the night to keep warm and fend off predators.


Since we were exposed to red light during both the day and the night, we adapted a 'sleep immunity' to red light. In fact, red light exposure has even been shown to improve your sleep quality!

A study on basketball players found that doing red light therapy once a day, for just 14 days, resulted in:

  • 28% increase in sleep quality
  • 83% decrease in sleep latency (time taken to fall asleep)
  • 75% increase in melatonin


So if you're looking improve your sleep quality, then make sure that you're using only red sources of light such as candles or red lights.

 Again, here are the red light hacks from the start:

  1. Hack your iPhone screen red here
  2. Hack your laptop screen here
  3. Get your red light therapy device here.

If you really want to take it to another level, then check out our Magnesium Protocol For Sleep!

That's it from me. I'm off to catch my 7-8 hours of glorious sleep :D

Love & light