I have few skills, but among them is the ability to fall asleep anywhere — in a club, in a car, on a couch. It’s probably the only quality I share with Kanye, who, according to Kim Kardashian, can’t control his dozing either. “We'll be at a meeting or he'll introduce me to people I've never met before, we'll be at a restaurant and he'll be snoring at the table,” she recently said on an episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live.
In a culture that believes “sleep is the cousin of death” and celebrates “they sleep, we grind” as an ethos, I’ve often felt something like pride when it comes to my love of slumber.
But over the past year or two, I arrived at an almost-epiphanic realization: just because I sleep a lot, doesn’t mean I sleep well. So I tried some things.
Whether you’re looking to give your sleeping habits a kickstart or simply interested in a cozier bedtime situation, consider the following 9 items. In various combinations, they’ve helped me sleep more soundly and wake up better rested than ever. (Of course, if you suspect that you struggle with insomnia or another sleep-related condition, a medical professional may be able to offer some life-changing resources.)
Eunoia Naturals essential oil pillow spray
Aromatherapy is fun as hell, and it really works. There are a bunch of similar products on the market, but I really love this particular blend of lavender and chamomile. I spray a bit onto a couple of no-scent dryer sheets and tuck them into a pillow case and under my sheets. And if I'm lounging with a book or TV show before bed, I give the couch a little love, too.
Stratton Collection flannel sheet set
Few things can throw off the balance of a relaxing night of sleep more than poor temperature regulation. Cold sheets make for a cruel winter, but a flannel sheet set can fix all that. This range from Stratton Collection features a few cute plaids and some festive snow-themed designs. Tell all your friends. The downside? Getting up is hard to do.
Zonli weighted blanket
To buy a weighted blanket is to buy an endless supply of hugs, for a one-time fee. The technology uses light sensory weight to relieve stress, anxiety, and various other conditions and disorders, including sleep disorder. It works. Amazon user Julie Childs testifies as much: "I have been sleeping well since I received the blanket and really like it," she wrote. "It feels like a gentle hug." (She also notes, helpfully, that her insurance covered the purchase.)
Infused Creations medical cannabis gummies
If you live in one of the growing number of states that has legalized recreational marijuana, consider an indica weed gummy as a nighttime aid. Plus it's a twofer: a lil' snack, a lil' sleep.
Pure Enrichment MistAire Ultrasonic cool mist humidifier
A humidifier will help your sleep, but those purer-air benefits will likely manifest in your waking life, too. This model is small and super portable, and it also serves as a nightlight. Add a couple of drops of an essential oil for an extra-pleasant situation.
Hanes flannel pajamas
I'm honestly shocked —in a non-judgmental way — by the number of friends I have who don't wear pajamas. Just as clothes can be an armor when you go into the world, they can be a snug cocoon when you're in the house. This classic Hanes mens' set is my daily staple: simple, relatively affordable, and available in flannel for the winter months.
Moonlight Slumber full-size body pillow
Most nights I sleep without a pillow. My neck just feels better on a flat surface, but it also helps my sleep to be in bed unencumbered by things — just me and my mattress is all I need. But every once in a while, I appreciate the occasional body pillow, and this lightweight, no-frills one does the trick.
Grehom Recycled Glass Carafe & Tumbler
Honestly, drink more water. This bedside carafe and tumbler can hold 30 ounces of water without taking up a whole ton of space on your nightstand (or on the floor next to your bed). Cute, utilitarian, and very, very good for you.
Sleep Cycle alarm app
This app has lowkey changed my life. Using your smartphone's internal accelerometer, it tracks the depth of your sleep and determines an optimal wake-up period within a 30-minute range. No more waking up groggy in the middle of a REM cycle.