How to make your voice deeper is a question many people have.
I have been working on my singing voice for over 2 years, but I have recently become obsessed with the idea of deepening my everyday speaking voice. This obsession started when I began researching how Bradley Cooper made his voice deeper to play the character, Jackson Maine, in ‘A Star Is Born.’
In this article, I will summarize what I have researched and personally experimented with on how to get a deeper voice. We will go over the mental preparation, provide voice deepening exercises, and even review some speaking and singing courses. In fact, I even found an online course taught by the same voice coach who worked with Bradley Cooper to prepare his voice for A Star Is Born.
Ultimately, this article aims to provide an actionable plan to help you (and me!) make your voice deeper, permanently and naturally.
Why You Want A Deeper Voice
However, the benefits aren’t just superficial. Speaking in a deeper voice may be healthier for you, your stress levels, and your vocal cords.
9/10 people have erroneously conditioned themselves to speak higher than their natural voice. I know I fall into that category. Stress, anxiety, excitement, or a desire to appear friendly and likable cause many of us to rush our speaking patterns and strain out our words.
How To Make Your Voice Deeper: The Mental
Find Your Natural Voice
Try this: It’s strange but, when no one is around – take a few moments to relax completely and take a few deep breaths. Pretend for a second that you are a completely enlightened yoga master. Now, with complete confidence, as if you’re greeting a student you know everything about, let the words flow out of you steadily and effortlessly, “Hello, how are you?”
It may take a few tries, but once you’re able to relax and put away any preconceived notions, odds are your voice comes out deeper. That deeper voice is your natural voice. Your everyday voice has been shaped by society and only feels like your “real voice” because you have been talking like that for so long.
However, there was a point in your life where your voice wasn’t pre-conditioned and it was incredibly powerful. For example, how is it possible babies can cry so loudly for so long? Back then, you were using you natural voice, breathing and emitting powerful sounds the way the human machine is designed to do.
We’ll get into the physical exercises and vocal warm-ups you can perform to strengthen your voice. However, it’s first worth noting that a lot of this process is mental. If you practiced the step above and found your natural voice more satisfactory than your everyday speaking voice, a lot of this process comes down to maintaining that relaxed state in more situations. The more mindful and intentioned you are, the more confidently you can state your words and maintain a focus on the inhale and exhale required to speak from deep in your core.
But let’s be honest… that’s pretty hard. We all get wound up and excited to share an idea or lose ourselves in a task. We can’t have our mind on what we sound like 100% of the time.
If you want to make your voice deeper permanently, the mental part will always play a role in the transformation. However, we can practice a variety of voice deepening exercises so that our voice is deeper naturally. That way we don’t have to think about it throughout the day.
How To Make Your Voice Deeper: The Physical
Speaking/Breathing From Your Diaphragm
The air from your breath is ultimately what forms your words and carries your voice. For that reason, breath support is the single most important aspect to a rich tone of voice.
To receive maximum breath support you have to make sure that you are breathing correctly. While breathing is a natural process, more people do it incorrectly than you’d expect. You have to breath (and speak) from your diaphragm.
Your diaphragm is a dome shaped muscle that separates your lungs from you stomach. It is the most important muscle when it comes to breathing. When you inhale, your diaphragm contracts and moves downward causing your lungs to expand. This draws air in through your mouth and nose. When you exhale, the diaphragm relaxes pushing the air out.
A rich, full tone is all about using your diaphragm muscle for deep belly breathing as opposed to shallow breaths into just the lungs. When speaking, you want to breath into your diaphragm and then speak out from your diaphragm. Think of it like you’re speaking from your belly button.
The stronger your diaphragm muscle – the more air you can take in and the better control you will have when releasing that air to speak or sing. Here’s an exercises to strengthen your diaphragm.
Voice Deepening Exercise: Diaphragmatic Breathing
Diaphragmatic breathing will do more for you than just strengthen your voice. Not only is diaphragmatic breathing calming, according to the Cleveland Clinic this exercise helps to strengthen the diaphragm, slow your breathing rate, decrease oxygen demand, and allow you to use less effort and energy to breath.
Here’s how it is done:
- Lie down on your back in a way that’s comfortable for you.
- Place one hand on your chest and the other on your stomach.
- Breath in slowly through your nose, causing your stomach to fill up like a balloon and the hand on your stomach to rise. Meanwhile, the hand on your chest should remain as still and level as possible.
- To breath out, push the air out of your stomach slowly by tightening your stomach muscles inward and pushing the air out through pursed lips.
- Repeat this for 10 minutes everyday.
This may be tiring at first, but after you have done this for a while it re-trains your body to naturally breath and speak from your diaphragm. Once you are more used to this exercise you can practice it while sitting or standing.
Now, onto what shapes the air when we speak…
The Throat and Vocal Cords
Your vocal cords live inside your larynx, aka your voice box. Speech or sound is created when air passes through your larynx and vibrates your vocal cords. Essentially, you are letting out little measured puffs of air in a certain frequency. The lower the frequency of those vibrations, the lower the pitch of your voice.
The frequency at which your vocal cords vibrate is determined by the length, size and tension of your vocal cords.
Unfortunately, there isn’t too much you can do to change the length and size of your vocal cords – but you can work on vocal cord tension.
You want your vocal cords to be loose – so that they vibrate at a lower frequency.
In fact, your voice is deeper when you first wake up because all of the muscles in and around your neck and larynx are relaxed and well rested.
Think of a guitar string (or even a rubber band or bungee cord). If it is stretched tight, it will release a higher, sharper ‘boing’ when plucked. Loosen it and the sound will get lower and lower (until it eventually doesn’t make any sound at all.)
To deepen your voice, you have to loosen your vocal cords, aka the guitar strings in your neck. Here’s how:
Voice Deepening Exercise: Head Raising Hum
This is a humming exercise paired with a neck movement. Together they are designed to strengthen and stretch your vocal cords leading to a deeper voice.
Here is how it’s done:
- Start with your head down and your chin against your chest
- Let out a deep hum from your diaphragm (your belly)
- As you continue a deep hum, slowly raise your chin off your chest. Pass up through your normal head position until your head and chin are pointing up into the air as you finish your hum. Your hum may go up in pitch as you stretch toward the sky, but try to maintain the deep natural tone.
- Repeat this exercises 5-10 times twice a day.
**Be sure not to overdo this exercise either by performing it too many times or trying to make that humming noise too artificially low. That will only serve to damage your vocal cords, leaving you in a worse place than when you started. If you feel any pain, or soreness stop for the day. Drink some water and give your voice a rest until it no longer is sore. Overuse of the vocal cords is a very real thing and can cause serious issues. So be careful.
How To Make Your Voice Deeper: Posture
I probably should have mentioned posture earlier as it is incredibly important. It plays into all aspects of your voice. Good posture helps you breath correctly. It also ensures that your vocal cords are loose and that you are in a position to project sound as far and wide as possible. Bad posture – slumping forward and pushing your chin down – restricts the air flow needed for a deep voice.
We all have a solid idea of what good posture is but in general, you want to stand with a straight spine. Keep your chest lifted and your shoulders back and down.
A way to find the ideal head position for a deeper voice is to use the ‘Head Raising Hum Exercise’ above. When performing the exercise, you’ll notice a point where your hum actually gets deeper before it starts to rise in pitch. This point is usually when you chin is level and perpendicular to your neck. Where your head sits when your hum becomes the deepest is the ideal head position for a deeper voice.
How To Make Your Voice Deeper: Strengthen and Stretch Your Neck
Your neck is less likely to get tired and tense when it is stronger and more flexible. A tired and tense neck will constrict your vocal cords rather than keeping them loose for a deeper voice. Below are 2 stretches and 2 exercise to strengthen your neck and deepen your voice.
Note: Neck exercises should be performed slowly and very carefully. Stop and consult a doctor if you feel any pain or have neck and back problems.
How To Make Your Voice Deeper: Neck Stretch 1
- Sit or stand up straight. Be sure that your neck is in proper alignment with your spine.
- Turn your chin to the left so that it is over your left shoulder.
- Hold for a count of 10 as you breath into your right side neck
- Repeat on the other side.
- Do 3 sets of this a day
How To Make Your Voice Deeper: Neck Stretch 2
- Sit cross-legged, on your knees, or in a straight backed chair. Make sure that your spine is straight and your head and neck are upright and in alignment with your spine.
- Reach your right hand down long, and slightly out to the right. (At about a 30 degree angle from your side.)
- Maintain forward alignment with your neck, and slowly tilt your head to the left, stretching the right side of your neck.
- Hold this position for a count of 10 as you breath into the stretch.
- Repeat this on the opposite side. Extending your left arm out and down and tilting your head right.
- Do this 2 to 3 times a day.
Neck Strengthening Exercise 1: Isometrics
This voice deepening exercise involves creating an equal tension between your hands and head.
- Stand with your neck straight and upright.
- Place your hand(s) on your forehead.
- Push forward with your neck as you push backward with your hands. Push your head and hands equally against each other to create tension in the neck muscles. The neck and hands themselves won’t move. They just create tension.
- Hold this tension for a count of 10.
- Repeat this with your hands behind your head. Then your hands to the right of your head, and then your hands to the left of your head.
- Perform this 4 sided cycle 1 to 2 times a day. *Stop if you feel any pain or fatigue*
Neck Strengthening Exercise 2:
This voice deepening exercise involves contracting the muscles in the front of your neck and stretching the muscles in the back.
- Stand up straight and look forward.
- Tuck your chin in and slightly down – however still continue to look forward, not down. You should feel the front of your neck constrict and tighten and the back of your neck stretch.
- Hold this for a count of 3 seconds and then relax.
- Complete 2 sets of 10 throughout the day. *Stop if you feel any pain or fatigue*
How To Make Your Voice Deeper: Adam’s Apple Position
The laryngeal prominence, aka Adam’s Apple, is cartilage that grows around your larynx and protects your vocal cords. As you go through puberty, particularly males, your Adam’s Apple grows and creates a bigger space for sound to resonate. This causes a deeper voice.
In our case, we aren’t going to worry about the size of the Adam’s Apple but rather its position. For a deeper voice you want to keep the position of your Adam’s Apple down. When you talk really fast, and get excited your Adam’s Apple tends to rise up in your neck and your voice grows higher and more strained.
Try this, locate your Adam’s Apple with your index finger. Feel it move up and down as you speak in a low and high voice. Once you find its range of movement, put your finger near the top of its range and then speak. As you speak, don’t let your Adam’s Apple rise above your finger. Keep it down and you will maintain a deeper tone.
Practice this so that you get used to speaking in your lower register. Do it often enough that this becomes habit and you speak with your Adam’s Apple down without having to put your finger on your neck.
You may just loose all that added sex appeal of a deep voice if you’re walking around the party speaking to everyone with your finger on your throat… ????
How To Make Your Voice Deeper: Lift Your Soft Pallet
Your larynx isn’t the only part of your body that shapes the sound that comes out as you speak. Your mouth and nose also come into play.
In particular, something called the velum – aka the soft pallet in the back of your mouth does quite a bit to control the tone of your voice.
The velum opens and closes the air passage between your nose and throat. If your velum is wide open, your voice will travel up and out through your nose, giving you a nasally sound. This isn’t always a bad thing. In fact it is quite helpful if you are a singer trying to hit the high notes. But it isn’t a good thing for a deep masculine voice.
If you are trying to deepen your speaking voice, you want to lift your velum, closing off the passageway to your nose and speak entirely through your mouth. This will reduce the higher nasally vibration sounds in your speaking voice and drop you lower into your register.
This is a little hard to explain through typed words, so below is an instructional singing video I found that does a good job explaining how to open and close your velum. On that note, if you are looking to deepen your voice, it doesn’t hurt to learn to sing.
How To Deepen Your Voice: Vocal Coach
The above exercises are a great starting point if you want to learn how to make your voice deeper. However if you really want to learn how to deepen your voice – you might need some vocal lessons and practice tracks. Luckily, you can get those via an online course from the best, Roger Love.
Roger has helped so many celebrities, actors, singers, and motivational speakers find an authentic, powerful, and deep voice. He has worked with Jeff Bridges, who acknowledged Roger in his Oscar speech. Roger was also the one responsible for Bradley Cooper’s voice transformation in ‘A Star Is Born.’ Cooper even shouts Roger out on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. Check out the clip:
Roger Love’s The Perfect Voice
You can get access to Roger’s course with videos, vocal exercises, daily warm ups and a whole lot more through this link. It’s has a $530 course value, but I keep the links in this article up to date with the latest deal. Right now it is $147. There’s also a starter pack for under $100.
Online Vs. In Person Voice Lessons
You may think that it won’t be the same taking his courses online vs. In Person lessons. Actually, from my experience taking multiple voice courses online vs. the few I’ve taken in person is that it’s better to start with an online course than an in person instructor. Online you likely have access to better teachers and you can go at your own pace, rewind, and not feel embarrassed when you ‘don’t get it right away’ or sound stupid. (Note: The other online vocal courses I’ve taken are Christina Aguilara’s Masterclass, and The Superior Singing Method)
Furthermore, so much of the early gains from vocal lessons come from simple repetition of vocal exercises based on tried and true vocal exercises tracks that naturally get you speaking and breathing with the correct air and muscles. There is NO reason to pay $100’s of dollars an hour to a vocal coach to get started. All they are going to do is have you perform these same exercises over and over again until you get the basics down.
If you do buy an online program and complete it to the end, you will improve drastically. THEN when you are more confident and comfortable you can hire a vocal coach to build upon your basics. However, again, an in person vocal lesson would only be if you’re really trying to go to the next elite level after mastering the basics.
It is possible to make your voice deeper by staying mindful and aware, positioning your body correctly, and performing voice deepening exercises. There are even courses like ‘Roger Love’s Perfect Voice’ that will walk you day by day through exercises on how to deepen your voice.
However, no matter which method you choose to make your voice deeper it is going to take time, hard work and discipline. I’m excited to share this journey with you. Let me know how you’re sounding in the comments below. Best of luck.