Sometimes something as simple as getting enough sleep is easier said than done! Busy lives, jobs and family responsibilities can make us too stressed to wind down, switch off and relax – and the more we worry about it, the harder it is to fall asleep.
Surprisingly, the solution could lie in revamping your bedroom. Your environment can have a huge effect on sleep quality, and just a few quick interior design changes could make all the difference.
Design Tip 1: Lower the Light Level
What to change: Add blackout blinds or blackout curtains. Swap bright overhead bulbs for lower wattage versions, and fit a dim, motion-sensor light at ground level for nighttime bathroom trips.
Why it works: Your body’s levels of melatonin (the sleep hormone) increase as darkness falls in the evening, signaling to your brain that it’s time to sleep. Too much light in the bedroom disrupts this natural rhythm, making it hard to drop off and affecting the quality of your sleep. Making the bedroom as dark as possible will help your body relax like it should.
Design Tip 2: Get out Your Paintbrush
What to change: Paint the walls of your bedroom blue, green, pale yellow, silver or gray.
Why it works: Believe it or not, the color of your bedroom can affect the way you feel! Studies have shown that people who sleep in blue rooms get the best night’s sleep, followed by those who surround themselves with similarly cool, gentle shades. Complement the new calming hue of your bedroom with a similarly soothing scent. Spray Febreze AIR or add a Febreze PLUG in Mediterranean Lavender to fill the room with a relaxing scent and clean the air of odors.
Design Tip 3: Banish Clutter
What to change: Clear your bedroom of excess “stuff” and give papers, clothes, jewelry and small items a home in a closet, drawer or container. Once the clutter is gone, clean furniture surfaces, baseboards and blinds with a Swiffer 360 Duster to trap and lock dust and pet hair and reduce allergens* in your bedroom.
Why it works: The saying “tidy home, tidy mind” is true – a messy, cluttered space is distracting and keeps your mind from switching off. Spending just a few minutes each day decluttering can make a huge difference to your stress levels at bedtime.
*Common inanimate allergens from cat and dog dander and dust mite matter.
Design Tip 4: Upgrade Your Bedding
What to change: Change your pillows every two years, and clean them regularly. Invest in good-quality cotton, silk, bamboo or linen bedding to go with them – and wash your pillowcases, sheets and duvet covers once a week with a fabric conditioner like Downy Infusions Sweet Dreams to help maintain them.
Why it works: The correct pillows are vital for getting good sleep, keeping your neck, head and spine aligned. Natural fibers like cotton will absorb moisture and keep you cool, while washing bedding regularly will ward off dirt, bacteria and allergens that disrupt sleep.
Design Tip 5: Invest in an Alarm Clock
What to change: An old-school alarm clock, or an electric one with a red display that only illuminates when you touch it, is a better option than the alarm on your tablet or smartphone.
Why it works: Scientists have found the blue light emitted by electronic devices interferes with your body’s production of melatonin and wreaks havoc on your internal body clock. Not only that, but watching TV or staring at a screen immediately before bed stimulates your brain, just at the point when it should be relaxing and winding down.
Do you have any clever tips for getting a better night’s sleep? We’d love you to share them with us in the comments below.