Most people spend a great deal of time and energy on the appearance of their home’s common areas, but some of us are guilty of allowing our bedrooms to become design afterthoughts. If you’re getting the recommended 7-8 hours of sleep each night, you may easily spend more time in your bedroom than any other room, and small changes in colors, lighting and design can lead to more relaxed and restful sleep. It’s the last thing you see at night and the first thing you see when you greet your day each morning, so why not make a few easy changes that will bring you a better night’s sleep?
Cool Down Your Color Palette
Colors actually have a subtle physical effect on the body. When you are surrounded by warm colors, your heart rate, blood pressure and body temperature elevate slightly. That’s great in a kitchen or family room, but not as beneficial in the bedroom. Instead, use pastel or muted greens, blues and grays in your bedroom, and save the bright colors for small accents such as pillows, vases, or within a favorite piece of art. Additionally, limit the number of colors used in your bedroom’s color palette to no more than three or four.
Most of us have heard about the relaxing qualities of lavender, and we’ve heard that adding lavender salts to a bath, diffusing lavender essential oil or spritzing pillows with a lavender scented spray can aid in sleep. Lavender isn’t the only sleep inducing scent though. Chamomile, bergamot, rose, jasmine and sandalwood are all good options for your diffuser or scented candles. A few hours before bed, light a candle or start your diffuser so the scent can permeate the room. You can also try adding these scents to when you launder your sheets, using lavender detergents and scent boosters.
Clear Out Clutter
Clutter is a visual trigger, and can keep your mind occupied while you’re trying to turn it off and fall asleep. Bills to be paid, papers to be sorted…even exercise equipment you’ve been neglecting to use can create mental pressure, anxiety and stress that keeps you from relaxing. If you must have a work space in your bedroom, make sure all papers are filed or stored before bed each night. Stacks of clothes to put away or laundry to wash should either be left in the laundry room or put away before bed. And as for that coat rack….ahem, treadmill, try to relocate it to a dedicated exercise room or corner.
We aren’t just talking about the overhead light or your bedroom lamps. Even small amounts of light seeping into a room can affect melatonin levels and sleep quality. If you have a TV in your bedroom, don’t set the sleep timer – turn it off well before you intend to fall asleep. Turn your alarm clock away from you and if possible, keep it several feet from your bed. If possible, remove all other sources of light from the room, no matter how small, and leave your cell phone in another room so it doesn’t disturb you when it lights up with notifications. Consider investing in opaque/blackout curtains to dim all outside light – and as a bonus, these curtains muffle outside noise as well.
Mirror Mirror….Get Off That Wall!
Practitioners of feng shui believe that mirrors bring extra light and energy into a space, making them great for hallways and dark corners, but not advantageous for restful sleep. Consider moving free standing mirrors to your closet or dressing area, or installing hanging mirrors on the back of a bathroom or closet door.
Ready to try these tricks out in an all new bedroom? See all of our latest listings here!