Today’s Solutions: April 14, 2024

We’ve shared many stories about what to eat, drink, or do before bed to ready yourself for a good night’s sleep—but what about what you should wear?

According to Nishi Bhopal, M.D., the influence that clothes have on sleep largely depends on the individual, however, there are a few things you might want to keep in mind for sleep optimization.

Opt for natural fibers

Of course, comfort is key when it comes to readying yourself for sleep. If you like to sleep in the nude, then you don’t need to worry much—you’re already clad in the very natural material of your own skin—however, if you prefer sleeping clothed, then most people will be more comfortable in natural fibers like cotton, linen, hemp, bamboo, and wool, as these materials are naturally moisture-wicking. “They allow your body to regulate its temperature more readily,” Bhopal explains.

The body’s core temperature starts to lower in the evening time to prepare for sleep, so it’s important to keep that temperature low. Avoid constricting clothes that make you feel hot and sweaty, and maybe invest in naturally cooling bedspreads and mattresses.

Bring on the socks—but wear them halfway

Those out there who like wearing socks to bed have their reasons, however, Bhopal suggests only pulling them up halfway instead of wearing them conventionally. By doing this, “you’re keeping your extremities warm, but as you get warmer, you can easily discard that layer,” with just a quick kick off your feet. That way, you’ll effortlessly be able to remove your socks and cool your body to the ideal temperature for slumber.

Make your sleepwear special

Investing in clothes that you specifically only wear in bed is a way to signal to your body that it’s time to get into rest and relaxation mode. Bhopal has personal experience to back this up, saying that she “used to wear just sweats, but [she] shifted to actually having proper sleeping clothes.” Once she’s changed into her pajamas, she says that she feels like she’s “done for the evening. It’s almost like a psychological cue.”

Changing into your sleep set of choice will make it easier for you to stop daytime activities that might otherwise keep you awake (like checking work emails or scrolling through your notifications on your phone), and before you know it, you’ll be fully ready for some well-earned Z’s.

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