The 10 Best Meditation & Breathing Apps To Reduce Anxiety
Just keep breathing, just keep breathing.
Deep breathing and mindfulness have long been considered solutions to stress; the focus on inhales and exhales centers us in the present moment and keep us grounded and focused. It’s no surprise, then, that meditation and breathing apps are a top way to help combat anxiety and depression, as well as life’s everyday challenges. We’re finding them especially useful for keeping ourselves calm and grounded through the pandemic.
These specific apps focus on meditation, deep breathing, and sleep sounds. Many include daily push reminders, guided lessons, calming music, and nature sounds to round out the experience. Keep calm and carry on.
If you want to get your kids involved, here are the best mindfulness apps for youngsters! And if you’re seeking out one-to-one support, we have online therapy options that are both affordable and accessible.
Best For | Meditation & anxiety
Cost | Free for basic features, $69.99/annually for Calm Premium, or one-time purchase for lifetime membership ($399.99)
Features | Guided & open-ended meditations, sleep stories, Daily Calm, mindfulness programs & masterclasses
Previously named the #1 App of the Year by Apple, Calm is a game changer for those in need of peace. It’s one of the top ranking apps in the Health and Fitness category, for good reason. Millions of people swear by Calm for their breathing programs, stretching exercises, and even sleep stories (voiced by the likes of Matthew McConaughey and Bob Ross). Whether you’re a beginner and want to try a weeklong trial or you’re ready to commit to the 21-day meditation program, Calm will help keep you grounded and reflective on the daily.
Best For | Meditation & anxiety
Cost | Free for basic features, $12.99/monthly or $69.99/annually for a premium membership
Features | Free basics course, guided & short meditations, sleep time sounds, focus & bedtime practices, Headspace at Work options
If you’re new to meditation, check out Headspace—the app is the best 101 we’ve found, and we love the 10-day basics course. Created in tandem with scientific research and meditation history, Headspace takes a clinical approach to the many benefits of mindfulness. With hundreds of meditation options starting at three minutes and resourceful blog posts on sleep, stress, and mindfulness, you can gently hone your skills with clarity and reduce anxiety levels in a few days.
Best For | Black community-centered meditation
Cost | Free for basic features, $9.99/monthly or $71.99/annually for a premium membership; reduced-cost options available at $4.99/month
Features | Black experience-focused meditations, 40+ BIPOC teachers, 5–25 minute meditations, offline listening available
Liberate is both a meditation app and safe space designed by, and for, the Black community. There are over 260+ meditations available between five and 25 minutes, covering topics like microaggressions, internalized racism, ancestral healing, and forgiveness. Committed to accessibility, Liberate offers reduced-cost subscriptions for individuals, nonprofits, and first responders. Led by more than 40+ BIPOC teachers and a diverse team, Liberate aims to “help the Black community collectively heal and be free.”
Best For | Breathing & meditation for adults & children
Cost | Free for basic features, $9.99/monthly or $58.99/annually for a premium membership, or one-time purchase for lifetime membership ($249.99)
Features | Customized surveys for guided meditations, integrates with Alexa, 400+ activities, free for educators & counselors
MyLife™ understands the power of mindfulness, especially when it comes to how you’re actually feeling. With glowing reviews from the Wall Street Journal and Fast Company, MyLife™ helps you tune in to your emotions and check in with your innermost thoughts with customized surveys and personalized activities. MyLife™’s sibling app, Stop, Breathe, & Think also offers tailored experiences for teens and kids as young as five years old so that anyone in your household (or classroom!) can benefit from the power of calm and quiet.
5. Simply Being
Best For | Affordable meditation
Cost | $1.99
Features | Five meditation time-lengths up to 30 minutes, additional music/nature sounds
Launched by the Maddux duo (they have more than 40 years of meditation training and are most known for their popular Meditative Oasis podcast and apps), Simply Being offers you peace during the most stressful moments of the day. With five time-lengths and an intuitive user experience, you’ll find yourself immersed in soothing music and gentle instructions. For just $1.99, you can unlock everything within the app, including optional nature sounds and 30-minute voice-guided meditation.
Download Simply Being
Best For | Breathing & anxiety
Cost | Free for basic features, $1.99 to remove ads & customize options
Features | Pre-defined presets, customizable reminders, can send breathing exercises to others
If ease-of-use is the name of the game, then iBreathe is right up your alley. This uber-simple, beautifully designed app reduces clutter to ensure a mindful and centered experience. Whether you’re battling anxiety or insomnia, iBreathe offers deep breathing exercises for relief. Best of all, the app pushes reminders to your phone, so you can take some time out of your busy day to be fully present. Plus, you can send breathing exercises to friends and go through them together for shared moments of zen.
7. Breathe+ Simple Breath Trainer
Best For | Breathing visualizations
Cost | Free for basic features, $4.99 to unlock all premium features & remove ads
Features | Custom inhale/exhale time-lengths, guided sessions up to 60 minutes, reminders
Therapists and guides alike will recommend breath visualization for meditation or daily relaxation. Breathe+ Simple Breath Trainer is a stunning visualization tool where you can literally see your inhales and exhales (timed to your preference). And if you want to close your eyes, you can set up a vibrate function to let you know when it’s time to switch between the two. With guided session lengths up to one hour (or freeform if that’s more your thing), you’ll feel ultra-relaxed in both mind and body.
Download Breathe+ Simple Breath Trainer
Best For | Pre-sleep mindfulness
Cost | Free for basic features, $12.95/monthly or $89.95/annually for a premium membership, or one-time purchase for lifetime membership ($149.95)
Features | Playlists, readings & stories, guided meditations & masterclasses, 12-week daily program, options for kids & teens, reminders, syncs across multiple devices
If you’re dealing with sleep issues, we highly recommend giving Breethe a try, given the app’s expertise with hypnotherapy and bedtime stories. Breethe is your own personal mindfulness coach, and you can see results in just five minutes flat. With over 1,500 stories and guided meditations, you can combat anxiety, sleep more soundly, or reduce stress using the curated sounds and bedtime visualizations, among other features. When you wake from your restful slumber, you can also start your day with gentle alarm clock and morning meditations.
9. Simple Habit
Best For | On-the-go sessions with experts
Cost | Free for basic features, $11.99/monthly or $89.99/annually for a premium membership, or one-time purchase for lifetime membership ($299.99)
Features | Five-minute meditations, over 500 free sessions & motivational talks, led by experts, integrates with Apple Health
For even the busiest person, meditation can become a daily practice thanks to Simple Habit (first seen on “Shark Tank”). Made for people on-the-go, this app will have you feeling calmer and breathing more easily within five minutes, all that’s needed to improve your mind-space. You’ll be guided through each meditation by experts at Google or former monks, which can be accessed both on- and offline—ideal for those with flying anxiety.
Download Simple Habit
10. Breathe In
Best For | Calm & focus
Cost | $5.99/annually or $0.99/monthly, or one-time purchase for lifetime membership ($15.99)
Features | Simple exercises, visualizations, reminders, 5-minute guided meditations
Often times, the key to a rest and relaxation is breathing consciously. Breathe In: Calm Exercises & Guided Meditation app helps you focus on breaths and ignore distractions in a couple of minutes. Set up cycles of inhales and exhales and let the app do all the work; you can also set reminders for when you’d like to take that time again or opt for a guided meditation. Easy, ethereal, and engaging, this app is sure to give you the relief and focus you’ve been hoping for.
Download Breathe In
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