After a stressful day, the thought of escaping to your bedroom for a good night's sleep is definitely one of the more appealing prospects
A tranquil setting can give you the sanctuary you crave - and bed expert Steve Pickering, MD of Sussex beds, offers his top five tips on how you can go about creating this calm oasis.
"One of the most commonly asked questions is about the colour of a room. A bedroom should be a soothing sanctuary so opt for a cool calming colour. White, cream, light greys and pastels are ideal starting points. The beauty of these colours is that as they are neutral, you can then personalise the room by adding bolder dark coloured accessorises like navy or maroon, in the form of pillows or a throw."
"There are many reasons to kick the ‘chair-drobe’ and the ‘floor-drobe’ into touch. Not only can these be trip hazards, but that mountain of clothes is possibly the last thing seen before bed. This will spark anxiety before sleeping of “I’ll sort it tomorrow”. It will then be the first thing seen again in the morning, and so the cycle will continue. Take time to clean away the clutter. Not only will it refresh the room but it will clear the mind too."
3 Switch the light
"The addition of a dimmer light in the bedroom can be soothing. Alternatively, switch to lower wattage bulbs to create a similar mood altering feel. Softer lighting creates less harsh lines and a more relaxing ambience."
Steve continued: "Particularly in the summer months, opt for blackout lined curtains or the ones that block as much light as possible. Light leaks can interfere with falling asleep and waking people too early, both disrupting a good night’s sleep."
4 Ban electronic devices
"Our brains are bombarded with information all day long via smart phones, televisions, and computers, so take time off from them and don’t take electronic devices to bed. These machines omit a blue light which stimulates the brain and is more likely to keep you awake. So go analogue, invest in a retro alarm clock, and ban gadgets from your bedroom."
5 Sheets and smells
"While we sleep we naturally shed skin and perspire. To ensure bedrooms don’t smell like a musty teenager’s space, begin with changing the bed sheets once a week. You should also air your bed and room for at least half an hour each day to circulate fresh air."
"Incorporating fresh flowers with a light floral smell to the room will brighten the space and bring the outdoors in."
Steve continued: "Finally try a few drops of lavender essential oil on the pillows. Lavender has been long associated with promoting the effects of sleep. For those who don’t like lavender, vanilla is known as a relaxant. So reach for the vanilla extract from the kitchen cupboard and pop one or two drops on the bedroom lightbulb and let the natural warmth defuse this comforting smell around the room."
Tips and images courtesy of Sussex Beds