9 Simple Ways to Turn Your Bedroom Into a Sleep Sanctuary
Your bedroom might double as a dumping ground for your clothes or second office, but did you know your environment has a huge impact on your quality of sleep? In fact, various studies have shown people simply sleep better when all aspects of their bedroom have been carefully optimized with light, color, temperature and comfort in mind.
Moreover, as one Harvard University School of Medicine study even pointed out, poor quality of sleep can lead to a 15 per cent decrease in life expectancy, giving you a good reason to reconsider your bedroom’s setup.
Creating the perfect environment for optimal sleep doesn’t need to break the bank, either. Here are nine affordable and effective ways you can create the perfect space for soothing and restorative rest, night after night.
9 simple ways to turn your bedroom into a sleep sanctuary
1. Find the perfect mattress
Given the average person spends around 26 years sleeping throughout their life (and seven years trying to get to sleep), it’s a good reminder that you should probably invest in a high-quality mattress.
Depending on your sleep preferences, you may enjoy the support of latex, the body contour feature of memory foam, or the bouncy feel of coils. It’s important to note that sleeping on the wrong mattress can also cause or worsen lower back pain, and reinforces poor sleeping posture.
Just like a mattress, the sheets you sleep in are of utmost importance, so you want to prioritize quality bedding that is practical, beautiful and affordable to promote a good night’s sleep.
Our Bed Threads sheets are composed of 100% flax linen, and this natural fiber is well known to have a myriad of benefits. Not only is it temperature-regulating (meaning it’s breathable in the summer and provides added warmth in the winter), but it also requires minimal effort to care for and style, it feels buttery-soft, it’s perfect for those with sensitive skin, and they’ll last you years. We’ve rounded up all the benefits of sleeping in 100% flax linen here.
3. Try essential oils
Essential oils have long been applauded as a natural alternative to sleep medications (and their associated side effects). They've been proven to relieve feelings of anxiety and stress while also lowering blood pressure.
Chamomile, Bergamot, and Sandalwood are some of the best scents that will lull you to sleep, and Lavender has even been tested for relaxing properties. A 2013 study on the efficacy of Lavender on neurological disorders found that its host of therapeutic properties improved patients’ experiences of sleep disruption and restlessness.
We’re constantly influenced by our surroundings, and colors play a huge part in affecting our mood and behavior. For example, if you’re surrounded by light pastels, you’re more inclined to feel calm and positive. On the contrary, if you place yourself in a room where colors are harsh and bright, you could either feel motivated, or angry and annoyed.
Colors are subjective, but some have a universal influence on the majority of people. Generally speaking, we associate the below colors with the following emotions:
- Yellow: happiness, joy, optimism, vitality
- Orange: socialization, energy, ambition
- Pink: reduced appetite, love, romance, calm
- Red: energy, stimulation, confidence, aggressiveness
- Purple: mystery, creativity, luxury, wisdom
- Blue: serenity, openness, focus
- Green: peace, tranquility, prosperity
- Brown: stability, natural, reliability
- Black: anger, strength, intelligence
- White: cleanliness, innocence, purity
This doesn’t mean you have to avoid your favorite colors in the bedroom at all costs because it doesn’t evoke the feeling you’re seeking. For example, while red and black are associated with stimulation and anger, these can still be incorporated into your sleep sanctuary in subtle ways.
Here at Bed Threads, none of our linen colors will disrupt your sleep. The richness of Charcoal will create a blackout effect when the lights are switched off, swathing you in darkness and helping to ease you into sleep. Also, while red can be disruptive for those who have trouble sleeping, more muted tones such as our Rust or Lavender are cozy and inviting.
5. Decorate with art
Find an artwork you truly, truly love. In the wise words of Marie Kondo, “does this spark joy?” Once you’ve found a piece that sparks joy every time you look at it, find the perfect spot for it – whether that’s above your bed, or in your line of sight from the moment you nod off and to the moment you wake up.
Beautiful art doesn’t have to be expensive, either - Etsy, Facebook Marketplace and Instagram are great places to search, or peruse our very own Bed Threads print collection for an affordable option.
Make yourself a sleep checklist, and try going to bed - and waking up - at the same time. There are seven key things to consider when building a healthy nighttime routine:
- Reduce blue light before bed
- Eye mask - this can help you if you are sensitive to light
- Comfortable bed, mattress, and pillow
- Clear the mind - keep a journal next to your bed
- Exercise, but don’t do this too close to bedtime
- Take a relaxing bath or shower
- Minimize alcohol, food, and coffee close to bedtime
Besides their Instagram-friendly benefits, a bedroom littered with plants can help induce sleep by transforming it into a more tranquil space.
Areca palms, mother-in-law’s tongue, orchids, and succulents are welcome bedside buds that will purify the air and optimize sleep without compromise. When styling these, find a nook or empty shelf space to hero your plant, cultivating a natural sanctuary inside your space of relaxation.
8. Keep cool
Many experts say the ideal bedroom temperature for sleeping is 18 degrees Celsius (65 degrees Fahrenheit). While this might sound a bit chilly, a cooler temperature helps you maintain a lower core temperature while you sleep to align with your natural rhythms.
This is why the material makeup of your bedsheets is so important. While synthetic fabrics like polyester trap heat inside them, our linen is made out of the crushed flax plant, making it 100% natural and much more breathable. Linen sheets circulate cool air through its loosely woven fibers to make sure warm air is never trapped around your body.
And for the sweaty sleepers, linen can absorb up to 20% of its own weight before feeling damp, so you never need to worry about excess moisture. Plus, with every little bit of breeze that blows through your open window, linen absorbs the air to dry out and cool down even further.
9. Hygiene, hygiene, hygiene
A sanitary bedroom is crucial for promoting good sleep. Not only should you be vacuuming your carpet, but regularly washing your sheets is a must.
In an interview with Tech Insider, microbiologist and pathologist at New York University School of Medicine Philip Tierno, said humans produce around 26 gallons of sweat in bed every year. When it comes to your bed, this means your body creates a very humid environment each night that allows bacteria to thrive. Tierno recommends washing your sheets at least once a week on a cold temperature setting to ensure you’re saying a final adios to all your little bacteria friends.
If you need more incentive to wash your Bed Threads linens, 100% flax linen actually becomes softer and cozier with every wash - no fraying, either. It also has moisture-wicking properties, which means those gallons of sweat you produce every year aren’t going to linger in your sheets for long.
Struggle to fall - and stay - asleep? Here, we asked a hypnotherapist to reveal the five techniques she swears by to beating insomnia and falling asleep, night after night.