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Sweet dreams: how to sleep soundly

We spend a third of our lives in bed, so sleep is clearly critical to our overall health and wellbeing. If you don’t regularly get a great eight hours, how can you improve this? The answer can be found in simply making your bed and surrounding bedroom as comfortable as possible.

A clutter exclusion zone

Know exactly what is in your bedroom, and ensure that each thing has a home, because you’ll be much calmer if you feel like you’re in control of the things around you. This ethos includes underneath your bed. There is a temptation to stash all sorts in this area, but unless you’ve got proper storage and your belongings are organised, it may feel as though you’re sleeping atop a to-do list.

Keeping your bedside table clutter free is important, as it’s one of the first things you see in the day. Seeing a stack of unread books reminding you of all your outstanding tasks, and that’s no way to start your morning!

Make it right

For a bed to look cosy and inviting, it needs to be made properly. We recommend never making your bed as soon as you get out of it in the morning. Immediately after you’ve got up, the bed is still warm and humid, and research has shown that this provides the perfect environment for dust mites to set up shop. Once you’ve risen, leave the bed and open the window for ten minutes to freshen up the room as you wash your face and get the kettle on.

Pay attention to your fitted sheets and pull them back over the mattress if they come loose in the night. Pull bedding flat, and shake pillows out, placing them upright at the head of the bed. If you hit the edge of your hand into the middle of the pillow whilst it’s in this position, you’ll achieve a nice shape.

Keep your bed clean

It’s crucially important to keep your bed as clean as possible. Nightly, sweat and skin cells accumulate in sheets, so they must be washed weekly. There’s nothing quite like the feeling of peace and luxury of getting into clean sheets, so if you start the night with a clean bed, you’ll sleep much more soundly.

To maximise the crispness and freshness of clean sheets, don’t overload the washing machine when sheets are being washed.

In addition, unless the manufacturer’s care label says otherwise, mattresses should be turned every three to six months to maintain the shape of the mattress.

Too hot? Too cold? 

To stay cool on warm nights, opt for poplin bed linen. Poplin is cool and crisp, making it the ideal choice for the summer months, whereas pinpoint Oxford is warmer and heavier.

If you and your partner have different temperature preferences, one of you needn’t suffer. Choose a cosy throw if one of you is more prone to feeling the cold.

Feng shui away!

In terms of décor, taste is everything, but you should always choose a bedroom colour that you enjoy. A bedroom decorated in a soothing or calming tone like a green-tinged white or powdery blue creates a tranquil retreat, while moodier colours are great in smaller bedrooms with gentle lighting.

For furnishings, minimalism is still the way to go in the bedroom. A spacious room makes it easier to clear your head and chill.

Also, consider the positioning of your bed. On entry, seeing your bed straight away creates a welcoming vibe, and beds that face a window are great for waking up and bringing in the day.

Make sure there’s also enough space around your bed to safely get in and out without bashing elbows and knees; make it easier to catch some Zs!

Lifestyle upgrades

Having a relaxed and snug bed is important, but that alone won’t cut it for everyone. There are a few other things you can do to get you to the Land of Nod:

  • Avoid caffeine after 4pm each day;
  • Ban technology from the bedroom. Light emitted by mobile phones and even digital alarms interferes with sleep quality;
  • Head to the bedroom at least half an hour before you want to go to sleep. By starting the process earlier, you’ll settle quicker;
  • If you don’t sleep well in the week, don’t sleep in at the weekend, at least for a while. A lack of routine is to blame for many sleep woes, so establishing one may get you sleeping better week-long.

Do you have any bedtime rituals that you rely on? Share them with us, and collectively, we’ll be soundly snoozing in no time!

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