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Six of the Best Meditation Apps for Summer Zen

Meditation is a skill rooted in ancient history, but the science behind it is catching up.

Research suggests it can help us to de-stress, focus, sleep better, feel calmer, lower blood pressure and even strengthen our relationships. Most importantly it can improve our relationship to and awareness of ourselves and gives us a tool that takes us well beyond life in lockdown.

Smart device control, social media, delivery services or music streaming, you name it, there’s probably a smartphone app for it. According to statistical estimates by Statista, in 2020 there were about 218 billion mobile apps downloaded to users’ connected devices across all App Stores.

And with so many people around the world searching for the easiest way to relax and refocus, it only makes sense that meditation apps are on the rise. Quartz reports more than 2,500 meditation apps have been launched since 2015.


Cost: Free version; Headspace Plus from $12.99/month with a free seven-day trial, or $69.99/year with a free 14-day trial

Arguably the best app for meditation beginners, Headspace breaks down the basics in a user-friendly way. The 10-day and 30-day courses focus on being present as opposed to many apps that favour spirituality. The app’s vast library features breathing exercises, sleep meditations, and wind-down practices. The free version offers a decent trial of what’s on offer but for the full experience, the Headspace Plus version includes anything you could ever look for in a meditation app. There’s over 500-plus meditations, music playlists, sleep sounds, yoga classes, workouts, and much more.

Headspace meditation app
Headspace meditation app | Source: Zapier


Cost: Free version; free 7 Days of Calm course; premium from $15/month 

One of the most popular mediation apps on the market, Calm boasts over 100 million downloads. The award-winning app has something for everyone in its massive library. It offers several types of mindfulness including guided meditations, bedtime stories, music and soundtracks. The Sleep Stories section features celebrities such as Matthew McConaughey or Jerome Flynn calmly talking you to sleep.

Calm meditation app
Calm meditation app | Source: Apple app store

The Mindfulness App

Cost: Free version; premium from $9.99/month or $59.99/year

This meditation app is perfect for both beginners and gurus alike looking to develop a consistent meditation practice. The 5-day guided practise and introduction to mindfulness are great for people just beginning their meditation journey. A timed guided or silent meditations sessions range from 3 to 30 minutes – wonderfully suited to a busy lifestyle. There’s also the choice of personalised meditation options, that includes daily reminders throughout the day, as well as in-depth statistics to track the journey.

The Mindfulness App
Source: The Mindfulness App

Ten Percent Happier

Cost: Free version; memberships from $99.99/year with a free seven-day trial

Based on American ABC news anchor Dan Harris’s New York Times Bestselling book, this meditation app lets users learn from the world’s top mindfulness experts. It teaches the how-to techniques behind meditating in a casual, easy, and user-friendly way. It’s the perfect meditation app for those who aren’t necessarily “the meditation type” or find it hard to start a meditation practice. Stemming from Harris’s own meditation scepticism, the app leads users through short on-the-go meditations from experts such as Sharon Salzberg and Joseph Goldstein.

Ten Percent Happier meditation app
Ten Percent Happier meditation app | Source: Zapier

Waking Up

Cost: Free for five introductory meditations and theory lectures, then from $14.99/month

Another leading meditation app based on the work of a New York Times Bestseller, Waking Up is the brainchild of neuroscientist and philosopher, Sam Harris. The well-known public intellectual brings his expertise across the mind, body, and spirituality to reveal a more philosophical approach to meditation. The app includes a huge collection of science-backed meditation courses, Zen Buddhist practices and a 28-day beginner offering. This meditation app is perfect for people who are looking to use meditation as a tool for investigating consciousness and existence.

Waking Up meditation app
Waking Up meditation app | Source: Zapier

Simple Habit

Cost: Free seven-day trial; memberships are $3.99/week, $11.99/month and $69.99/year

This is for the people who feel it can be overwhelming to start a meditation practice. Simple Habit gets back to basics offering a range of 5-minute exercises to help users slip into the rhythm of consistent meditation. The app strives to make meditation a simple habit with short practises designed for improving sleep, decreasing stress, prepping for a job interview, or getting through a tough day. This is the meditation app for the no fuss, no bells and whistles individual – simple, effective exercises that are easy to find and quick to execute.

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