Calm features programs for beginners, intermediates, and experts, so there’s something for everyone. Novices will appreciate the opportunity to deepen their practice as they gain experience, and those already well-practiced in the art of meditation won’t feel as though their hand is being held while utilizing Calm’s variety of features. Calm Body includes 10-minute sessions of guided stretches and other gentle exercises to refocus and reinforce the mind-body connection. Good for those looking for a variety of different features.
Price: Free for basic or $12.99/month for premium; $59.99/year; $299.99 for lifetime subscription
Insight Timer keeps it simple. Users set the desired duration for their meditation session, plus accompanying sounds and music. Insight Timer also features a message board to connect with or seek support from other meditators. Users can gain access to Insight Courses, which start at $4.99. These courses are 10- to 30-day programs with a specific focus, such as getting more restful sleep. Good for those who are short on time or like a no-frills approach to meditation.
Price: $9.99/month; $59.99/year
Buddhify was designed for on-the-go meditation. Users don’t buy a subscription but pay a single up-front cost, because Buddhify’s creators hope their app helps users get to the point where they won’t need an app to meditate. Special features include dual meditations (which are meant to be done with someone else to promote harmony in the relationship), child-focused meditations, and the Give feature, allows users to send a meditation to someone they feel could benefit from the practice. Good for those who don’t want to feel dependent on an app.
Sattva places itself at the intersection of ancient philosophy and modern mindfulness—where “ancient meets modern in the palm of your hand,” according to their website. In Ayurveda or Sanskrit, “Sattva” is one of the three modes of existence associated with purity and goodness. Sattva boasts a unique collection of guided meditations, ancient chants, Vedic mantras, and music created by Sanskrit scholars who have “mastered the subtle inner workings of the mind.” We like the sharing features, which allow friends to partake in group challenges and share playlists to inspire each other. Good for those interested in incorporating Ayurveda
into their meditation practice.
Price: $12.99/month; $49.99/year
This partnership between BodyMind Sessions and CancerCare.org features meditation sessions, inspirational talks, and music and natural sounds playlists to help patients relax during moments of high stress and anxiety. CancerCare launched their app in 2018, but the organization has been around since 1944. They are the leading, national organization providing free, professional support services and information to help people manage the emotional, practical, and financial challenges of cancer. Good for lengthy chemotherapy treatment sessions.
Price: $6.99/month; $46.99/year
Loving Meditations was created in the wake of a cancer diagnosis: When David Dachinger was diagnosed with stage IV cancer, his wife Tamara Green, LCSW, became his full-time caregiver. This app is their answer to the terror and turmoil that coincides with a diagnosis. Loving Meditations features daily inspirations, guided meditations, breath work, mindfulness-based stress reduction, guided imagery, and self-hypnosis. Good for those looking for easy-to-follow tools for anxiety, fear, sleeplessness, and pain.
Price: $2.99/month; $19.99/year
CREATE TO HEAL
Created by WomenWings.org, this app aims to give users the tools to practice creative therapies and stress reduction during the chemotherapy process, or in the wait to receive test results. This app features guided meditations, music, art, and animations to help those in treatment for cancer relax and tune in to their creativity. Good for long and stressful waits in the doctor’s office.