I’m flipping our guest bedroom for the third time this month already! While I’m so grateful for the Airbnb guests that we’ve had (and they’ve all been lovely and respectful), this part gets old. However, I do want to give our guests a great experience and a welcoming place to rest their heads. Between this practice and my monthly habit, In Bed by 10, the elements of a nice bedroom have been on my mind. There are really only two things under our control that impact the quality of our sleep: an evening routine and the bedroom space itself. A nice room with a comfy bed and only a few other elements can make all the difference.
THE ESSENTIAL BEDROOM
1. The Bed: We all have those beds that we love sleeping in and continue to remember many nights after. Mine are a hotel in Park City and a nice Tempur-pedic in a friend’s home. If you can’t afford to replicate that bed, at least make sure you have nice clean linens and pillows that still have some life left in them. Outside of a bed, maybe you need a closet and a side table for your current book and a lamp. I’m not a fan of a lot of other furniture in a bedroom because it tends to collect clutter, especially clothes. If your chair only seats yesterday’s clothes, move it out!
2. Light: We talked about this in Creating an Evening Routine... bright or cool lights disrupt our sleep hormones. Light candles if they help you relax. Keep lights low-wattage or on dimmers and invest in blackout shades or curtains. Mmm dark cave like in Vegas. Our bedroom is in the middle of our home and gets very little streetlight but, on some nights, even the moon can keep me up! If you can’t block all the light, try a mask.
3. Air: That said, it’s also a good idea to get natural light into your room during the day. Air quality is so important, especially where we sleep. Sun and an open window can help freshen a room. Also make sure to dust regularly, particularly behind those bedside tables. I can’t even tell you what I’ve found behind some! Plants are so great in bedrooms not just to help clean the air but also as something calming to look at.
4. Art, not clutter: It’s nice to have something pretty to look at when you’re going to bed or waking up. A view, of course, works but so does a plant or artwork that transports you. I’m working on getting a print of Joshua Tree opposite my bed. Our guest room has a little print we picked up on the coast in Italy. However you choose to decorate your room, keep it simple and clutter-free. It’s amazing how much affect clutter in the bedroom can have on your sleep. Remove the taxes from under your bed (used to be guilty!), the bills from your dresser and those letters from past relationships. They weigh on you more than you know!
5. No electronics: Again, the blue light. Your bed should be associated with two things, and those don’t include work or watching movies. Watch tv elsewhere. Charge phones elsewhere. Check email elsewhere. Your sleep (and partner) will appreciate it. ;)
+ Sound is also important in a bedroom. We’ve recently replaced all of our windows which really cuts down on street noise. Oh, and we left Manhattan. If noises distract you while sleeping, try a noise machine with a soothing white noise.
Sleep tight <3