What are color noises? | Types of color noises

What are color noises?

With the help of science we are constantly discovering new methods of treatment for the diseases. Along with these methods, we are also developing new techniques that we can use as “supportive” methods in the treatment of some diseases or disorders. One of these methods used by many people is color noises. What are color noises?

What are color noises?

Color noises, also known as colored noises or colored sounds, are a categorization of different types of sounds that are defined by their spectral characteristics. They are often used in sound therapy, relaxation techniques, and as background sounds to mask unwanted noises or aid in concentration and sleep. In this article, we will take a closer look at the different types of color noises and answer the most frequantly asked questions about color noises.

What are the different type of color noises?

Here are the diffeerent types of color noises:

  1. White Noise
  2. Pink Noise
  3. Brown Noise
  4. Blue Noise
  5. Violet Noise
  6. Grey noise
What are color noises
PhotoStock-Israel / cultura / Corbis

White noise:

White noise is perhaps the most well-known type of color noise. Its name derives from the analogy to white light, which contains all colors of the visible spectrum. Similarly, white noise encompasses all frequencies within the audible range, producing a consistent sound that masks other distractions and promotes relaxation. Often described as a “hissing” or “rushing” sound, white noise can be particularly useful for enhancing focus or creating a peaceful ambiance.

What are the benefits of white noise?

White noise is also often used for tinnitus, insomnia, or to block out background noise. You’ve probably heard it before, because it’s the sound you hear when static occurs on television.

What is white noise bad for?

The “Bedtime Fan” app has been downloaded more than 3 million times, while the “White Noise Generator” for Android devices has been downloaded more than 1 million times.

One theory is that they hearing the same sound every night can trigger a kind of Pavlovian response, where people learn to associate it with falling asleep. But does that really work?

According to “The Guardian“, Mathias Basner, professor of psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in Philadelphia, and his colleagues looked at 38 studies that examined noise as a sleep aid. For some that continuous noise shortens the time it takes to fall asleep, the quality of the evidence was extremely poor. At least one study suggested that the noise might lead to more sleep disturbances.
“If these apps or devices could only do good things, I wouldn’t really care. But because there may be negative consequences, I would just be careful,” said Basner, whose research has been published in the journal Sleep Medicine Reviews. “I wouldn’t broadly recommend them, because there is no evidence that they are actually working.”
What are color noises
Image credit: Pixabay

Pink noise:

Pink noise is characterized by equal energy per octave, creating a balanced and soothing auditory experience. It differs from white noise by having more power in the lower frequencies, gradually diminishing as the frequency increases. Pink noise resembles the natural sounds of rainfall, rustling leaves, or ocean waves, evoking a sense of tranquility. Its calming effect makes it an ideal companion for meditation, stress reduction, or improving sleep quality.

What are the benefits of pink noise?

Compared to white noise, which is often associated with the hum of air conditioners, whirring fans, or static, pink noise is a better choice for concentration and sleep. The sound of pink noise is also much deeper than white noise, reducing the negative effects of shrill sounds that wake you from sleep or meditative states.

Because pink noise can block out various sounds and unwanted background noise, it is the perfect choice for concentration. In fact, many people who suffer from chronic tinnitus find that pink noise has proven beneficial.

What are color noises
Spectral analysis of white and pink noise. (The Physics Hypertextbook)

Brown Noise:

Moving further down the frequency spectrum, we encounter brown noise. Also known as red noise or random walk noise, brown noise has a deeper and lower-pitched quality compared to white or pink noise. Brown noise decreases by 6 dB per octave and thus has a much higher power density than pink noise. With a more pronounced bass sound, brown noise creates a gentle, enveloping ambiance. This type of color noise is often utilized to promote relaxation, mask distracting sounds in noisy environments, or enhance focus during study or work sessions.

Some examples of brown noise are low, booming frequencies, such as thunder or waterfalls. Contrary to popular belief, brown noise gets its name not from the colors of the noise, but from the fact that it comes from Brownian motion, a signal that resembles the pattern of the “random walk.” Brownian noise was named after Robert Brown, a Scottish botanist who was the first scientist to study it in the early 19th century.

What are the benefits of brown noise?

Relaxation and Stress Reduction: Brown noise’s deep, soothing quality has a calming effect on the mind and body. Its gentle, low-pitched sounds create a sense of tranquility, helping to alleviate stress, anxiety, and tension. Listening to brown noise can promote a state of relaxation, making it an excellent tool for meditation, mindfulness practices, or simply unwinding after a long day.

Improved Sleep Quality: Brown noise can be particularly beneficial for those who struggle with sleep disturbances or insomnia. Its steady, low-frequency characteristics create a consistent ambient sound that masks other noises and distractions. By creating a more stable acoustic environment, brown noise can help induce sleep, prevent sleep disruptions, and promote a deeper and more restful sleep experience.

Enhanced Focus and Concentration: The continuous, deep tones of brown noise can also aid in improving focus and concentration. By masking distracting sounds in the environment, brown noise creates a consistent backdrop that allows the mind to stay centered on the task at hand. This can be especially useful in work or study settings, where external noise can hinder productivity.

Tinnitus Relief: Brown noise can provide relief for individuals experiencing tinnitus, a condition characterized by the perception of ringing or buzzing sounds in the ears. The steady, consistent nature of brown noise can help minimize the perception of tinnitus sounds by providing a masking effect. It can help individuals with tinnitus focus their attention away from the unwanted sounds, reducing their impact on daily life.

Increased Privacy and Confidentiality: Brown noise can serve as a privacy tool in environments where confidentiality is essential. Its steady, low-pitched sound can help mask conversations and other noises, ensuring that sensitive discussions remain private and protected.

color noises
Image credit: xpressocommunications

Blue Noise:

Blue noise, sometimes referred to as azure noise or transient noise, exhibits greater intensity at higher frequencies. This creates a “hissing” or “crackling” sound reminiscent of rushing water or a roaring fire. Blue noise finds applications in audio engineering and computer graphics due to its ability to shape the perception of high-frequency content. In a relaxation context, blue noise can invigorate the mind, improve concentration, and enhance productivity.

violettes Rauschen als den intensiveren Cousin von Blau vorstellen. Violettes Rauschen kann bei hohen Lautstärken extrem hart sein, da es sehr viel Energie in hohen Frequenzen konzentriert.

Violet Noise:

Violet noise is the highest-pitched color noise, showcasing intensified energy at the uppermost frequencies. Its distinct “whistling” or “sizzling” sound might remind you of wind blowing through a narrow passage. Although less commonly used in relaxation or therapeutic settings, violet noise can serve specialized purposes in audio engineering and signal analysis tasks.

Grey noise:

Gray noise is very similar to pink noise in that it sounds the same at every frequency . If we look at the gray noise curve, we can see that it represents the psychoacoustic curve of A-weighting for equal loudness, which is the reason why we get the same power at each frequency.

Unlike the white noise spectrum, the gray noise is equally powerful on the linear frequency scale.

What are color noises
Image credit: Pixabay -DieterRobbins


What color noise is best for sleeping?

When it comes to choosing the best color noise for sleeping, individual preferences can vary. However, one color noise that is commonly recommended for sleep is pink noise. Here’s why pink noise is often considered ideal for promoting a restful sleep:

Balanced Spectrum: Pink noise exhibits equal energy per octave, meaning it has a balanced distribution of frequencies. This balance creates a soothing and comforting sound that mimics the natural sounds of rainfall, gentle winds, or ocean waves. The gradual decrease in intensity as frequency increases helps to create a calming environment conducive to sleep.

Relaxation and Stress Reduction: Pink noise’s gentle and consistent sound has a relaxing effect on the mind and body. It helps to mask other disruptive sounds, reducing the potential for sleep disturbances. The soothing qualities of pink noise can help lower stress levels, quiet a racing mind, and induce a sense of tranquility that aids in falling asleep faster and achieving a deeper sleep state.

Enhanced Sleep Quality: Pink noise has been shown to promote improved sleep quality. By providing a continuous and consistent sound backdrop, it helps to prevent sudden awakenings due to external noises. Pink noise promotes a more stable sleep environment, allowing for more restful and uninterrupted sleep. It can also help lengthen the duration of deep sleep stages, which are essential for overall sleep restoration.

Tinnitus Relief: Pink noise can be particularly beneficial for individuals with tinnitus, as it helps mask the perception of ringing or buzzing sounds in the ears. By providing a consistent and pleasant background noise, it can help divert attention away from tinnitus symptoms, allowing for better relaxation and sleep.

Familie, Neugeborenes, Baby, Kind

Which color noise is best for anxiety?

Masking External Distractions: White noise, characterized by a broad spectrum of frequencies played at equal intensity, can effectively mask background noises that may contribute to anxiety. By creating a consistent and continuous sound, white noise helps to drown out sudden or unpredictable sounds, providing a steady auditory backdrop that can help calm the mind and reduce anxiety-inducing environmental stimuli.

Focus Enhancement: White noise has the ability to enhance focus and concentration by blocking out distracting noises. This can be particularly helpful for individuals with anxiety who may find it challenging to concentrate or stay grounded due to external stimuli. By promoting a more focused and controlled environment, white noise can help redirect attention away from anxious thoughts and promote a sense of calmness.

Relaxation and Stress Reduction: The consistent and soothing nature of white noise can have a relaxing effect on the mind and body. It helps create a sense of calmness and tranquility by providing a constant sound that can mask intrusive thoughts and promote relaxation. This can be especially helpful during moments of heightened anxiety or when trying to unwind before sleep.

Sleep Aid: Anxiety often interferes with sleep, making it difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep throughout the night. White noise can help create a more conducive sleep environment by masking disruptive sounds and providing a soothing background noise. By promoting a more peaceful and consistent auditory experience, white noise can assist in calming an anxious mind and facilitating better sleep.

noise color for anxiety
Pixabay: TheDigitalArtist

What is purple noise good for?

Relaxation and Meditation: Like other color noises, purple noise can have a calming effect on the mind and body. Its high-frequency energy distribution, often described as a “whistling” or “sizzling” sound, can create a unique and mesmerizing auditory experience. This characteristic might make purple noise suitable for relaxation exercises, meditation, or as a backdrop for mindfulness practices.

Brainwave Entrainment: Some proponents of brainwave entrainment techniques suggest that purple noise, with its high-frequency content, can stimulate or influence certain brainwave patterns. Brainwave entrainment involves using specific sounds to synchronize brainwaves and induce desired mental states, such as relaxation or focus. While the research on this aspect is limited, purple noise could potentially be used as part of brainwave entrainment practices.

Audio Engineering and Signal Analysis: Purple noise finds more practical applications in audio engineering and signal analysis tasks. Its unique spectral characteristics make it useful in audio testing, sound system calibration, and scientific research related to frequency response analysis or acoustics.

Remember, while color noises can have their own merits, they are not standalone solutions for complex issues. It is essential to address any concerns or seek professional guidance for specific conditions or situations. Additionally, personal preferences and comfort should always be taken into consideration when incorporating color noises into your daily routine or relaxation practices.


Color noises offer a vast auditory palette to explore, each type carrying its own unique characteristics and potential benefits. From the all-encompassing shroud of white noise to the earthy depths of brown noise, and from the balanced serenity of pink noise to the energizing frequencies of blue noise, these sonic hues provide an array of possibilities for sound therapy, relaxation, and focus enhancement.

Experimenting with different color noises allows you to tailor your environment to match your needs and preferences. Whether you seek tranquility, improved concentration, or better sleep, incorporating these harmonious sounds into your daily routine can help create a peaceful sanctuary in the midst of our chaotic world.

So, why not embark on a sonic journey and explore the captivating world of color noises?

Image credit: Pixabay – TheDigitalArtist

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