Less is always more, right? Not when it comes to sleep! A good night’s rest is essential to both our mental and physical health, but in the quest for that perfect slumber, bedroom design is one factor that often gets left out.
You’ve perfected your bedtime routine, never drink caffeine after 3 pm, limit screen time before bed and know to eat a lighter dinner, yet some nights, sleep still eludes you. What else can you do?
Your bedroom itself might be part of the problem. Sleep is a highly psychological mechanism that relies on a very specific physical space. The design and function of most bedrooms are actually actively detrimental to proper sleep cycles. Luckily, here are some quick and easy bedroom fixes so you can get your beauty rest!
Sort Out Your Priorities
Your bedroom’s primary function should be to induce sleep, and this needs to be reflected in the layout and design.
If possible, keep all ‘work’ related apparatus like computers, folders, paperwork and stationery in a dedicated area which is not in the bedroom, and make the bed the central focus of the layout.
Keep nightstands, dressers and commodes free of items that act as a to-do list, like electronics, work stuff, diaries, planners or calendars, and keep only soothing objects in view. No one wants to be reminded of all the things they could be doing instead of sleeping!
Your nightstand’s surface can be limited to a nightlight and a beautiful photo, and your dressers or commodes to daily beauty and hygiene products stored in open boxes. This makes it easy to put away without being visually distracting. Keep items like books, notepads, paper, clothes, and jewellery in the drawers or cabinets.
Channel Your Inner Vampire
Light is the enemy of vampires, and sleep, so you want to do everything within your power to keep it out. Blackout blinds are intensely sleep-friendly, particularly if you work in shifts, and they can help your brain begin the wind-down process or ignore the sun at 4 am. If installing blackout blinds isn’t a viable option for you, a sleep mask is a fabulous, comfortable and practical alternative.
Adjust Your Colour Palette
While warm, vibrant colours are great fun, they are definitely not conducive to a good night’s rest. Save them for spaces like the living room or patio, and paint up your bedroom in cool, pastel-like colours that won’t stimulate your brain. Pastel greens, blues, yellows, pinks and lavenders, as well as creamy whites, are the ideal shades to lull you into relaxation and slumber.
This one isn’t talked about so much, but having a particular scent that your brain associates with sleep can be beneficial in engaging your sleep mechanisms. Either choose a fragrance that you already link with relaxation, or pick something that you think will do the job. Steer clear of synthetic candles and fragrances, though. Beeswax candles, essential oils or oil-burners are lovely natural ways to infuse your bedroom with the scent of sleep.