The importance of a sleep is well documented. Regularly missing out on a good night's kip can have knock on effects on your health, productivity, emotional state, and overall wellbeing. One of the ways you can improve your sleep quality is by taking a look at your bed. If you've already invested in the best mattress for your needs, there are some more things you can do to ensure your bedroom is set up to be as restful as possible.
Here, sleep expert Rob Davey from Snoozel Green (opens in new tab) outlines seven steps to constructing the comfiest, most inviting bed.
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1. Clear the bed
Your bed should be an ideal place to relax and unwind, but nothing can upset that quicker than clutter and mess. There nothing more uninviting than a messy or crumb-filled bed, you'll need to start with a spot of good old fashioned spring cleaning. "To truly enjoy your bed's comforts, the first step is to make sure it's clean," says Rob. "This includes removing any clutter, freshly washing your bedsheets, and making sure the immediate space around the bed is clean too," he expands. And if you can face it, don't stop at the bed either: "A quick tidy up will create the kind of bedroom you will feel happy to rest in."
2. Decide on the cosiest covering
For most of you, that means deciding between a duvet and a comforter. "A comforter is usually quilted with the filling evenly distributed, while a duvet has an insert that fills the cover," explains Rob. Both can be cosy options for sleeping, and both have their pros and cons. A duvet can shift around in its cover, disturbing your sleep, but the removable cover does have the benefit of being easy to pop in the washing machine regularly. As you'll find in our best duvet guide, there are plenty of different options in different weights and at different price points.
On the other hand, comforters, being just one piece, will stay put well. However, they can lose their loft over time, and unless you're going to pop a sheet underneath, will need to be dry cleaned. A sub-section to consider – especially if you struggle with insomnia or anxiety – is a weighted blanket. Many find these soothing and relaxing. Our best weighted blanket guide has more info if you're interested.
3. Opt for neutral sheets
Bad news for spill-prone readers: Dan says white or neutral sheets make for the most inviting beds. "They will go with any décor, feel luxurious like a hotel, and reflect heat in the summer, so you are kept cool," he explains. He also recommends looking for natural rather than synthetic fabrics, for example cotton, silk, or hemp. Our best sheets guide runs through our top picks.
4. Double case your pillows
You've heard of a mattress protector, but what about a pillow protector? Dan recommends adding one of these beneath your pillowcase, to stop allergens such as dust, pollen, pet hair, and sweat from getting onto the pillow. "Opt for a quilted pillow protector for extra cushioning on the pillow, and clean them every time you wash your regular pillowcases," he adds. (If your pillows are looking a bit flat, our best pillow guide will help you upgrade.)
5. Add a throw at the end of the bed
We're on to the final touches now. A throw blanket provides both an optional extra layer of warmth and a design flourish. "Soft and chunky knit throws are great for autumn and winter whereas lightweight throws are perfect for warmer months," says Dan. "When you make your bed in the morning, fold your throw blanket horizontally and align it with the end of your bed or drape it over a corner at the foot of your bed for decoration."
6. Finish with a few pillows
Lastly, it's time to add some decorative pillows. "Decorative pillows add dimension and a welcoming feel to your bed, as well as providing additional support to your back during bedtime reading," explains Dan. "Do not use flat, old pillows but invest in a beautiful design on goose down pillows instead. These will look plump even when you lay them flat or propped against your headboard."