Convert your bedroom into the perfect sleep sanctuary and banish bedtime woes
Embrace blues, especially in your bedroom. It’ll help you sleep better.
TTake a look at your bedroom: Does it inspire relaxation? If not, why not? Your bedroom should be the one place in your home where you can totally rest, away from the everyday hustle, bustle and worries. Too often, however, the debris of our lives spill into our bedrooms and they become extensions of our living spaces mismatched decor, clutter piled up around the bed, technology on the nightstands and inadequate storage for our clothes. All of these factors mean our bedroom environment is far from restful and is in fact helping to keep us awake at night.
For the ultimate restful bedroom scheme, stick to a simple neutral palette of whites, coffees and dark brown wood, like the Keane queen bed from Dh5,505, Crate and Barrel (right). Stay away from busy patterns and make sure clutter is kept out of sight in a bedside table with drawers.
Certain colours, such as red or purple, stimulate our senses, so they aren’t the right choice for a bedroom, especially if you have trouble sleeping. Like the sky or sea, blue inspires a feeling of calm, which can lower your heart rate and blood pressure – so is an ideal shade for bedrooms. Choose something you are drawn to as a starting point for your scheme. This will make you feel happy and comfortable when you enter the space – whether it’s a fabric for curtains, a wallpaper or a duvet cover. Then pick out the palette of colours for the rest of the room from this for a harmonious look.
Even the colour on a cushion can inspire your bedroom scheme. Lattice cushion in duck egg, Dh150, John Lewis, at Robinsons.
KEEP IT DARK AND COOL
Although we don’t have lights on for sleep, it’s still important to get the lighting right. When it is dark our bodies release melatonin, which relaxes us. Soft or dimmed lights before you turn off the lights mean you aren’t stimulating the senses too much before you sleep. Avoid putting overhead lights on and use lamps instead. Leave electronics like phones and iPads outside as the blue screens suppress melatonin. (Sleep experts recommend avoiding screen time 40 minutes before you go to bed.) Blackout blinds will help to reduce light pollution and prevent earlymorning light from flooding in.
Get the climate of your bedroom right despite the soaring temperatures outside. A cool 15-18 degrees Celsius is recommended for sleep. Check the temperature with a thermometer, particularly in children’s rooms.
Bedside lamps with soft-coloured bulbs, like this Klabb lamp (Dh125, Ikea), give off a relaxing glow before you go to sleep.
MMake sure your bed is comfortable. Your mattress is vital to whether you are getting a rested night’s sleep or whether you are waking up aching and uncomfortable. This will also affect your partner’s sleeping, too. Pillows and bedlinen are also important factors to you sleeping well.
BUYING A MATTRESS
Your mattress needs to be replaced every seven years. When buying a mattress, go with your partner and lie next to each other in your usual sleeping position. Also lie flat on the mattress to check how hard it is – slide your hand underneath into the hollow of your back. There should only be a little resistance. If there is no gap and it is difficult to slide your hand in, then the mattress is too soft and you will sleep in a slouched position with your spine out of line. A large gap means it is too firm and will put pressure on your shoulders and hips.
Lie together for at least ten minutes on a mattress before you buy, and try lying on your back as well as your usual sleeping positions. It is recommended you buy the bed base at the same time as the mattress to ensure that they fit together properly.
Yorkshire wool 8000 pocket spring mattress, Dh6,750 for a double, John Lewis.
Stay away from busy patterns and make sure clutter is kept out of sight
Like the sky or sea, blue inspires a feeling of calm, which can lower your heart rate and blood pressure
Linea II queen bed, Dh5,505, Crate and Barrel Buy the biggest bed you can: Lie next to your partner; you should both be able to cross your arms behind your head and not touch elbows.