I do not know of a single person who does not love sleep. I love sleep, and I can’t get enough of it. However, it’s not even the act of just getting 6-8 hours of sleep, but how I feel when I wake up after a restful night. I feel recharged and ready to conquer the day.
But, when the sleep quality starts to dwindle, I suffer — and I carry that feeling throughout my day. When I think about the reason why those nights were not so restful, I realize that it is because I didn’t create a comfortable environment for sleep. Whether I was on my phone late at night or fell asleep watching Netflix, it really can take a toll on my sleep. So lately, I’ve been more focused on how to prepare for bed so that I have a more optimal sleep.
Scroll for how to prepare for a restful night’s sleep
Keep your sheets clean
First, let’s start with the basics — your sheets. Chances are you aren’t washing your sheets enough. During your nightly sleep sessions, dead skin cells, oils, and (let’s be honest) sweat come off of your body and onto your sheets. Your bed has now become a breeding ground for bacteria and dust mites — which can trigger acne and allergies for those with sensitivities.
If that sounds bad, listen to this: on average, most Americans wait 25 days before cleaning their sheets. Yes, that was 25 whole days. So, how often should you be washing your sheets? That depends on the circumstances. Especially if you are an occasional night sweater (like me!) — at least once a week. If you prefer to stretch that out longer, I wouldn’t recommend going past every two weeks. Trust me, your skin and health will thank you.
Personally, I like to use The Laundress Rose Signature Detergent only to wash my sheets — not only does it keep my sheets clean, but it also has a luxurious smell that I love. To keep you sheets fresh smelling in between washes, consider using The Laundress Fabric Fresh. Make sure to use the code “TLFRIEND-1218” to get $10 off your order!
Find your relaxing scent
Spray a relaxing scent that you would only use for your bed. Something that you would only associate with sleep. Spray a little over your pillow, duvet, and sheets. And let the scent take you to a far away place.
What I’m using right now is MCMC Fragrances Desert Rose Atmosphere Mist. I love this scent because it has a warm smell that makes me feel so cozy. Plus, this mist is 100% organic, eco-friendly, cruelty-free and vegan, including phthalate-, paraben-, and preservative-free!
A good night’s sleep starts with comfortable sleepwear. Depending on your sleep style and skin sensitivities, finding the right fabric to go to sleep in is very important. Even sleeping au natural has its benefits! Whatever that may be, make sure your sleepwear is comfy for you and just as clean as your sheets.
My personal favorite is Lunya’s Washable Silk Set. I will admit — these are expensive pajamas. In my opinion, they are worth the splurge because they have given me a much better and comfortable sleep. My body tends to get hot at night, and this silk set is thermo-regulating to keep me cool. I also love the split tulip cut on the tank and shorts, since it allows for the pajamas to more easily more with me as I turn in my sleep.
Do not disturb
Confession: my phone is way too often the last thing I look at before going to bed. Sometimes I’ll get into bed and start scrolling on my phone, and then suddenly it’s 1am, and I am calculating how many hours of sleep I’ll get if I scroll for a few more minutes. I know I’m not alone on this one. We all do it.
Studies report that the light from your phone is really robbing you of a good night’s rest. The blue light emitted from your phone can interfere with your melatonin development and circadian rhythm. Meaning: you are getting less and lower quality sleep.
But, I have been trying to change this bad habit by putting my phone on do not disturb mode an hour before going to bed. You’ll be surprised how this is improving my sleep. Instead of mindlessly scrolling through my phone and staying up late for no good reason, I put it away. Now, I am able to fall asleep more quickly and at a decent hour.
No binging in the bedroom
I know, I know. It sounds crazy but hear me out. As much as I love catching up on my favorite Netflix series before bed, it does mess with my sleep. Same as with my phone, I find myself in bed staying up way later than I intended just to watch another episode. It’s not worth the lost sleep. Resist the temptation and leave the Netflix binges out of the bedroom.
Instead of watching Netflix before bed, try picking up a book. Yes. that one you have been meaning to read for months. Light reading is a great way to prepare yourself for sleep. bedroom is a place for peace.
Dim the lights down low
Ever tried going to sleep immediately after turning off your overhead lights? Going immediately from full brightness to darkness isn’t very relaxing. In the evening our body naturally releases melatonin, which is what makes you sleepy. However, studies show that long exposure to artificial light can decrease the production of melatonin and therefore make it harder to go to sleep and stay asleep.
Consider using a dimming light. If you can’t install a dimmer into your bedroom ceiling lights, purchase a dimming lamp. As you are preparing for bed, dim the lights. Put your phone away, read a few pages from a new book, and cuddle with your partner.
You will be surprised how these small tweaks can greatly improve your sleep quality. Sweet dreams!