When you sleep, you’re unconscious by definition, but that doesn’t mean your bed should be anything less than luxurious. You deserve to cuddle up surrounded by the finest things — and a few cheap swaps and additions are all you need to be dreaming like royalty in a fancy oasis of your own creation.
Learn to love silky sheets
Silky sheets are the best, but they come with a learning curve. Before getting into what can be difficult to get used to with these, imagine this: You just got out of the shower, did your skincare routine, make some tea, and grab a book to read before bed. You trade the robe for pajamas and slip into a silky cocoon of soft sheets that are cold to the touch but still warm. You are the most deluxe person in a five-block radius, no doubt, and you have won the bedtime war.
Isn’t that nice? It is, but bear in mind that the first few times you get into this silk bedding, there will be slippage. It almost requires core strength to keep your body on the mattress, but don’t worry about it. You adjust and soon enough, you won’t be sliding all over the place.
The other concern with silky sheets is that they are wrinkly, especially straight out of the package, and because of the way light reflects on them, the indents are pretty noticeable. You’ll want to steam them before putting them on your bed, which takes some time.
The good news is that while silky sheets feel extremely luxurious, your wallet doesn’t have to take that big of a hit. On Amazon, sets for queen-sized beds can be as low as $30 and come with a fitted sheet, flat sheet, and two pillow cases. There are higher-end options, of course, but start small just to see how you like it. Those pillow cases are clutch, too. They can help with acne and keep your hair smooth, and even help it retain moisture. To wake up with less frizzy hair is a win itself.
Spritz your bedding with a pillow spray
Once your pillowcases and sheets are silky as can be, there’s an extra step you can take to make your bedding even more luxe. Pillow sprays are all the rage right now, and for good reason.
The This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray contains lavender, camomile, and vetivert, promises to help you fall asleep faster (though it’s fair to be sceptical here), and has great reviews. (For a real-life review, just know I visited a friend the other day, she threw a bottle of the spray at me full speed, and she said, “Get this shit right now, for real.”) Other options include Slip’s Sleep Mist and Calm’s Sleep Mist.
In the same way you might use a citrus-scented face wash in the morning, scents like lavender can seriously relax you before bed — and creating a calming, regular bedtime routine is one of the keys to great sleep. Incorporate a nightly spritz of these sprays on your pillow in your routine.
Use lotion or body oil before going to sleep
Scents and nice textures are not reserved for your bedding here. Keep a lotion or body oil near your bed and use it at night as part of your routine. On a practical level, this is good for your skin; more broadly, the more self-care steps you take before dozing off (and the longer you stick with doing them every night), the more accustomed your body will become to recognising when it’s time to go into sleep mode.
Rigorous field testing in this area (by me) shows that a light amount of body oil like Glossier’s Body Hero Dry-Touch Oil Mist, which has a pleasing neroli scent, won’t stain those silky sheets you labored so hard to de-wrinkle. Just don’t go beast mode on the application.
Another secret to sleepy-time success is baby lotion. Lotions for infants are designed to be calming and gentle, and Johnson & Johnson’s Bedtime Baby Lotion is a great pick, as is that brand’s oil gel. You can picture it now: Your lotioned-up body parts sliding around in the silky sheets…
Set the right lighting for the evening (and the middle of the night)
We’re doing a play for almost all of the senses here: the feeling of your lotion and sheets, the smell of your body oil, and the taste of your tea. For lighting, consider swapping the bulb in your nightstand lamp for one with a yellow hue. Look into one of those orange salt lamps that were trendy on Instagram a few years back; they’re still great and even come in little nightlight versions, so if you wake up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom, you don’t need to be startled into full alertness by a harsh light.
Look into smart bulbs or outlets, too, so you can control your lighting from bed and don’t need to leave the warmth of your fancy new sheets just to toggle everything off. The goal here is to be as relaxed as possible and with a couple of cheap upgrades like these, you’ll be out like a (yellow) light in no time.