Android iPhone and iPad Productivity Self Improvement

The 10 Best Calming Apps to Relax, Destress, and Clear Your Mind

Brent Dirks Updated 12-12-2019

It has probably happened to all of us at some time in our lives. The world can feel like it’s going 1 million miles a minute and you’re left in the dust. Whether work is dragging you down and causing fatigue or something else in your personal life is causing stress, you’re not alone. And the good news is that there are a number of calming apps—on both iOS and Android—that can help you destress and clear your mind.


We’re highlighting 10 calming apps that span the gamut of different options from mind mapping to guided meditation and more.

1. MindMeister

At any one time, there are probably a host of different thoughts swirling around in your mind. Mind mapping can help you by allowing you to brainstorm your thoughts without a particular order or structure in a visual form. 

A great mind mapping app option to take a look at is MindMeister. Along with an online interface, the mind mapping service is also available on mobile devices.

Using the app, you can quickly and easily organize, prioritize, and generate new thoughts. There are a number of tools to create a map including different themes, styles, colors, and icons. It’s also possible to collaborate with others to create a mind map in real time.

With an available subscription, you can also export maps in PDF and PNG format, create and edit unlimited maps, and add files and images to topics.

Download: MindMeister for iOS | Android (Free, subscription available)

2. Ambi Pro

Ambient noise is a great way to help you relax and concentrate by masking the boisterous world around us.

Ambi Pro is unique because instead of using looping audio recordings, it creates a blend of changing noise algorithmically that never repeats.

Special digital reverb helps give the app a sense of depth. To help further personalize the output, there is also an 8-band graphic equalizer. You can design your own presets and save them.

An automatic timer can also switch off the sound after a specific time period.

Download: Ambi Pro for iOS ($1.99)

3. Calm

Although ambient noise helps some people relax, it can annoy others. If you’re looking for something different, try the relaxation app Calm.

While it’s a great meditation app The 5 Best Meditation Apps for Relaxing and Sleeping We round up the best meditation apps to help you relax, get better sleep, and take a moment for yourself. Read More for beginners, there are also a number of options for more advanced users. The guided meditations sessions are available in different lengths from 3 to 25 minutes. Some of the different topics include managing stress, happiness, gratitude, self-esteem, forgiveness, and many others. You can also select from an open-ended and unguided, timed meditation. Breathing exercises will also help you relax.

Every day, a new 10-minute program is designed to help ease you into the day or unwind.

Download: Calm for iOS | Android (Free, subscription available)

4. Headspace

Headspace is one of the more popular tools for both guided meditations and mindfulness techniques.

You can try the Basics course for free that teaches the fundamentals. And if you want to learn more, a subscription is available to unlock all of the app’s content including the full meditation library. There are a wide variety of different topics to explore like sleep, focus, and exercise.

For a quick break, the app also offers 2 to 3 minute meditation sessions. There are specific sessions for moments of panic, anxiety, and stress. You can even add friends to help motivate and to meditate with as well.

Special animations teach new skills and help answer questions about mindfulness.

Download: Headspace for iOS | Android (Free, subscription available)

For similar apps to Headspace that can help you fight a smartphone addiction The 5 Best Apps to Help You Fight Your Smartphone Addiction Are you addicted to your smartphone? These mobile apps will help you salvage your personal life and regain your productivity. Read More , check out this list:

5. Day One

A daily journal is a great way to organize your thoughts and keep a clear mind. Day One offers a beautiful interface and other features to help make daily journaling a habit you’ll want to keep.

The interface is free of distractions to help focus on specific thoughts. Journal entries support the powerful Markdown language. Entries are easy to organize and can browse through them by calendar, timeline, maps, or photos. Metadata from the iPhone can also bring more to each entry with other information like temperature, weather, and music playing on a certain day. Your thoughts are safe with a passcode and Touch ID support.

With an available subscription, you can take advantage of unlimited journals and photos storage. Information also syncs with iCloud and the Mac version of the app.

Download: Day One Journal for iOS (Free, subscription available)

6. Breathe2Relax

Breathing from your diaphragm has been shown to reduce anxiety and stress while helping you stay calm. Breathe2Relax is a great free relaxation app for users who want to practice deep breathing without any prior experience.

Unlike other apps that focus on meditation, Breathe2Relax focuses on both breathing and tools to help reduce your stress levels.

It guides you through breathing exercises and offers the option of listening to music during each session to help create a calm environment.

For Apple devices, the app offers support for the Health app Making Sense of Your iPhone's Health App Apple's Health app can help you take control of your well-being. Here's how to begin. Read More and Apple Watch so you can see how a breathing exercise impacts your heart rate.

Download: Breathe2Relax for iOS | Android (Free)

7. Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock


Having a calm and relaxing day often start’s the night before when you go to bed. Getting a good night’s sleep has been shown to have a wide variety of benefits for your health. But for many of us, that’s easier said than done as issues like insomnia and more make it difficult to fall asleep and wake up too sluggish to tackle the day ahead.

Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock brings a number of features to help you track your sleep and wake up at the most opportune time in the morning. At night, the app uses special sound technology to track your different sleep phases. If snoring is detected during the night, Apple Watch wearers will feel a slight vibration that could help you change sleep positions and stop snoring.

Before going to bed, you can set a custom 30-minute period in the morning that ends at a set alarm time. The app will then wake you up in a light sleep phase during that time period.

The available subscription offers more features including long-term sleep trends, Philips Hue smart light support, and more.

Download: Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock for iOS | Android (Free, subscription available)

8. Colorfy

Coloring books are no longer just for children. The act of coloring has been shown to relax and calm even adults. And there are a number of different digital coloring apps for smartphones De-Stress On The Go With iPhone Coloring Apps The act and art of coloring, once reserved for children, is now being seen as a form of therapy for adults. Read More and even the larger screen of tablets.

One of the best is Colorfy. The app features more than 1,000 different pictures to color which includes animals, cats, gardens, famous paintings, and more. Users can even add their own drawings to paint. Coloring is easy, just select a color palette and then tap to color. There are also a number of brush types for different effects.

Available to use without an internet connection, all of the drawings can be shared on social networks. And a unique augmented reality virtual gallery lets you visualize your drawings in the real world.

Download: Colorfy for iOS | Android (Free, subscription and in-app purchases available)

9. Smiling Mind

One of the most interesting free relaxation apps available is Smiling Mind. The completely free app is made to assist children as well as adults.

There are specific programs for children of different ages and adults that focus on dealing with the pressure, stress, and different challenges of everyday life. Sessions also cover mindfulness in the classroom and the workplace.

There are a wide variety of meditation lengths to select from, and you can even check in with yourself at the beginning and end of a session to quantify your stress level.

Download: Smiling Mind for iOS | Android (Free)

10. Alto’s Odyssey

You don’t need to find relaxation apps to help you get rid of stress and anxiety. Games that can destress you are all the rage on mobile platforms, and there is a myriad of different titles that can help calm you.

While the puzzle genre is known for relaxing titles The 8 Most Relaxing Puzzle Game Apps for iPhone Here are the most relaxing puzzle game apps to play on your iPhone. Why not sit back, relax, and puzzle away the stress? Read More , Alto’s Odyssey offers a different type destress game.

The follow-up to the hugely popular iOS game Alto’s Adventure, the new title sees the titular Alto—along with his friends—set off an endless sand boarding adventure. Thanks to a simple one-touch control system, almost anyone can learn the basics and set off in no time. There are an enormous amount of secrets to explore and tricks to learn.

Along with the beautiful scenery while playing, the original musical score for the game is easily worth the price of admission. Put on your headphones and melt away into the beautiful environment. The special Zen mode features its own special soundtrack and allows you to enjoy the game without a score, coins, or power-ups.

Download: Alto’s Odyssey for iOS ($4.99)

The Best Mobile Apps for Rest and Relaxation

While life can sometimes overwhelm you, there’s no reason to get down. Hopefully, using some of these best relaxation apps, you can better take on the daily grind and stay calm and relaxed.

For an alternative method to lower your stress levels, play binaural beats The 8 Best Binaural Beats Apps for Android Here are the best binaural beats apps for Android. These tones help you focus, relax, become more creative, and much more. Read More . You might also want take a look at apps for managing mental health 5 Free Positivity Apps to Manage Mental Health and Boost Your Spirits Everyday life can really wear you down. Try these helpful apps that can manage your mental health and boost your spirits. Read More  and positivity apps to change your mood and manage depression 5 Brain-Hacking Positivity Apps to Manage Depression and Change Your Mood Feeling stressed, depressed, and unable to get out of a funk? These free apps can help you manage your mood. Read More .

Explore more about: Health, Mental Health, Relaxation.

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  1. Anonymous
    October 5, 2018 at 9:22 am

    What a waste of time

  2. delixyr
    August 17, 2018 at 10:56 am

    You missed and focus@will

  3. Chris
    July 31, 2018 at 1:18 am

    Very well thought out advice on the Write Protect error, thanks for providing. I tried every step on here, though the registry key right down to the format. However the twist of it was, it finally said it was unable to format because . . .you guessed it . . . "The device is write-protected."

    And there is no external switch anywhere on this USB :-/

  4. dragonmouth
    July 29, 2018 at 11:52 am

    A run through the woods or a walk on a beach to watch the sunrise destresses me better than all these apps combined.

    • Rajiv
      August 21, 2018 at 8:02 pm

      You're blessed ???