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3 steps to better sleep

live the dream! try these simple solutions and have a good night

We can all agree on this: the day goes better when you get a solid night’s sleep. It’s not just a feeling: The Centers for Disease Control report that people who routinely sleep less than seven hours a night are at higher risk for cardiovascular disease, obesity, stroke, depression, and a host of other chronic diseases. If you would like to improve your sleep, start here.

1. review and renew your bedding

Whatever your sleep needs and style, there’s a type of bedding for you. You can find cooling sheets and mattress toppers if you sleep “hot,” weighted blankets to ease anxiety, even Benzoil-peroxide-treated pillowcases that resist discoloration from acne treatments, so you don’t lose sleep worrying about staining your pillows.

If you’ve got allergies, consider investing in one or all of these products from Claritin, which are made from luxuriously soft, tightly woven cotton that protects against dust mites, household allergens, pollen, pet dander, and stains.

2. optimize your environment

Create a clean, cozy, and clutter-free bedroom. You’ll find your way to dreamland a lot faster if you can locate the bed without hunting. Fill your sanctuary with objects that instill peace and happiness, like fresh or faux bouquets, scented candles (lavender’s great for relaxation), and pretty furniture and accessories.

Add practical pieces, too: Blackout curtains keep out the light until you’re ready to get up. Sound machines block distracting background sounds and lull you to sleep with the murmur of a mountain stream or white noise, if that’s your thing. A humidifier adds moisture to the air, which makes it easier to breathe (and sleep) in dry, heated rooms.

3. cultivate calm

Start by laying off caffeine after noon. If you like a warm drink at night, try soothing chamomile tea. Dim your lights and darken screens a couple of hours before bedtime. Not only will you minimize sleep-disrupting blue light, you will avoid getting wound up by suspenseful dramas and world news. Curl up with a book and an electric heating pad instead of bingeing on Netflix. Or take a hot bath with relaxing essential oils like lavender. Experiment with what works for you. Even if you dedicate just a few minutes to caring for yourself and slowing down your body at bedtime, you’ll be rewarded with a better night’s sleep.

Want more tips on how to wake up happy? Check out our Go-To Guide to Sleep Solutions, and our tips on How to Calm Fall Allergies for a Better Night’s Sleep.