“ Brand: Babytec / Safety Type: Night Lights „
Our daughter developed a fear of the dark when she was 2 years old. I bought a number of nightlights; the basic plug-in variety, which gave little light. The rectangular plug-in that gave an eerie green glow which was supposed to simulate the moon - but was actually quite scary. After months of hysterical nights I bought the Autofade as I was at my wits end. Its a very simple curved lamp in a frosted white plastic ,sitting 18cm tall by 15cm wide and 8cm in depth. The light is baby/toddler proof and doesn't get hot. Its simple to use. There are two buttons, the bottom turns the light on and if you keep your finger on this button it will get dimmer/brighter until you get to the brightness that suits you (this setting is then stored for future use). The light is a nice, warm glow - fully on is good for reading bedtime stories, we then turn it down to settle her to sleep and further still when we go to bed. The Autofade has been a huge success and is still being used three years later. Today we bought a second Autofade for our 20 month son, who is starting to get upset when he goes to bed. For him, we use the botttom button to turn on and then touch the top button. The light starts off bright and then slowly dims over 15 minutes and turns off. It worked like a dream tonight, giving him the initial security of the light and then easing him gently into sleep mode.
At £21 the light is a fairly expensive option, however it has greater flexibility than most other lights. It's not particularly pretty, and quite bulky when travelling. It does appear to be toddler proof, ours has been thrown around in baggage and pulled off the shelf with no ill effect (there is a 2 year guarantee). There are two things I would change to make it even better; the first is to have the choice of either battery/mains operation to cut down the bulkiness when taking it away with you. Secondly, the screw that you have to undo to replace the bulb is deepset at the end of a long chamber - requiring a screwdriver that isn't in any of my toolkits. I did manage to get the bulb in tonight with alot of twisting and brute force and thankfully without breaking it. If the dark is a real issue with your child then this is a good investment - its certainly made our evenings alot more peaceful.
We bought this light in the autumn, when our toddler began to object to it being dark at bedtime. (By 'object to', I obviously mean 'have screaming tantrum about'.) During the summer, he had been happy to go to bed because he could play with toys and look at books until he was ready to lie down, but once it starting getting dark earlier he started making a terrible fuss every night. He was just getting to that age where children want to get their own way all the time and clearly resented being told when to go to sleep. Thankfully, I found this light and it cracked the problem almost immediately.
The light is arch-shaped, with a rounded top of frosted white plastic and a base of opaque white plastic with two metal buttons on it which are touch-sensitive. It is mains-operated.
The lower button is the on/off switch and dimmer; you touch the button briefly to turn the light on or off, or hold your finger to it when the light is on to dim or brighten it. It has a clever feature where, if you previously dimmed the light, when you touch it again it will brighten it. This is handy if, for example, you are dimming the light but go a little too far; you can let go and then when you touch it again, it will brighten rather than having to go to the dimmest setting and then back up again (hopefully that makes sense. It's simple to do but really quite complicated to explain!).
The top button is the important one in terms of this light's main feature. Touch this button briefly, and the light will gradually get dimmer over a period of 15 minutes and then turn itself off. It will do this from any setting, it doesn't shorten the time if the light is not on its brightest setting to start with.
This was exactly what he needed; a short wind-down period - after story time and after whichever of us had drawn the short straw that evening had left the room (I'm kidding. I love The Gruffalo. Really.) - in which to potter about in his cot and lie down in his own time. Now that the light has become part of the bedtime routine, he doesn't seem need this so much and we just dim the light and leave it on.
It's a very warm light, which is perfect for a night light, and the settings are just about right. The brightest setting is perfectly adequate to read by and the dimmest gives out just enough light to reassure without disturbing sleep.
The only improvement I could think of would be to have a function which dims the light gradually to its lowest setting, rather than switching it off, as some children would respond well to the dimmer but prefer to have a night light on all night. I would definitely use this setting if it had it. As it is, we are now using it as a standard night light, and it works very well.
The light is not cheap - it costs around £20 from Amazon or John Lewis, and some other online retailers as well. However, given the hour-long howling tantrums we were enduring every night before we bought it, I could have paid double that and I'd still have thought I'd got a bargain. Definitely recommended.
Lets baby gain confidence! No need to be afraid of the dark anymore. The light fades away to off after 15 minutes. Includes other features.