Drown out bustling street noise(or a snoring partner) with pink noise — sound (like falling rain) with a lower, steadier frequency than white noise. A fan works well, or try an app like Rain, Rain Sleep Sounds that you can set on a timer.
Muted, neutral colours are best for relaxation as opposed to bright colours, like red, which are attached to emotion. But it’s actually the type of paint that matters most. Choose a matte finish instead of high gloss, which reflects light.
“People sleep better when it’s cool,” says Dr. Michael Breus, a clinical psychologist in Scottsdale, Arizona. The ideal room temp is between 18C and 21C.
“Melatonin is called the vampire hormone because it comes out only in darkness,” Breus says. “It’s the key that starts the engine for sleep, so it’s best to avoid bright lights after about 8 p.m.”
Research shows that lavender, ylang-ylang and vanilla can all help you feel more relaxed — and you need to be relaxed before you can sleep, says Breus. Avoid candles (fire hazard!) and opt for a reed diffuser or pillow spray instead.
Cotton sheets are the most breathable, and synthetic down duvets are allergen-free.“If you’re a back or stomach sleeper, buy a thin pillow,” says Breus. If you’re a side sleeper (best for uninterrupted sleep), a thicker pillow keeps your head and spine aligned.
Make sure your bed doesn’t face the door or windows — it’s a feng shui thing.
Use an alarm clock that doesn’t emit light.“But if you’re getting enough sleep, you shouldn’t need an alarm,”says Dr. Breus.