Our homes now need to play double duty, as many people continue to work from home during the day, and then need a calming retreat at night. Productive, good days start with getting good rest, and increased productivity, brighter moods, and better stress management are some of the perks that a night of high-quality, restful sleep can deliver.
But after striving to create the perfect sanctuary, and adopting a mindset to achieve the sleep of your dreams, it can be utterly frustrating to be unable to drop off in summer when it feels too hot and humid to sleep comfortably.
The ideal sleep space is dark, quiet, and cool - typically around 18ºC. The human race evolved in outdoor conditions, where the temperature drops at night, which is one of the many factors that make us feel sleepy.
But warm nights can decrease sleep quality, increasing the number of times we wake up during the night, preventing us from reaching the later sleep stages where we get the most rest and repair.
It’s essential to get the right temperature for sleep, and it is much easier to achieve in the cold, darker nights of winter than the hot and sunny days of summer. We have a look at some designer-approved tips to create a stylish bedroom that’s cool and comfortable.
1. Layer your bedding.
Chunky, high-tog duvets are wonderful in winter, but lighter blankets are easier to layer during the summer. Not only will it add texture to a room, but it will create a versatile sleeping arrangement that's suitable for all seasons.
2. Choose the right materials.
For stylish summer layering, ditch the flannels and fleece for light, breathable bedding, such as cotton or linen textiles that don’t trap as much heat.
Percale, a cotton weave that is tight yet breathable and tends to be cooler to the touch, is ideal for bedding.
Bedding in light, breezy colours can also add to the cooling, inviting effect. Bring on those light blues, pale greys, crisp whites, cool greens, and dusty pinks.
3. Keep dark blinds down, with the windows open.
If you are able to rearrange where your bed sits in the bedroom, try placing it so it faces away from the morning sun. However, if you don’t have the space to rearrange furniture, and stuck with waking up to a bright, south/south-east facing window, then blackout blinds or blackout lined curtains can help block light and heat.
One of the most impactful ways to keep the bedroom cooler is to keep curtains and shades closed, while keeping the windows open, thus blocking the sun, but allowing for airflow.
4. Craft your own shaded retreat.
If your bedroom gets a lot of summer sun, but you’re unable to invest in blackout curtains, then. You can try shielding your sleeping area with a chic screen.
Natural materials such as bamboo or rice paper can make for a light, dreamy screen that can be moved around the room, perhaps to block the afternoon sun for a lazy midday nap. You can also decorate the area around the screen with rolling elements of nature, such as palm leaves, seashells, or driftwood to evoke a sea breeze.
5. Achieve a cross breeze using fans.
In the UK, we don’t use air conditioning units as much as in Europe, but strategically placed fans can help keep the temperatures down and improve airflow throughout the bedroom. Fans will help distribute air throughout a space and help maintain a more consistent temperature.
To create a cross breeze in your bedroom at night, set up one fan to blow in the direction of your bed and the other to blow out your window. If temperatures outside are colder than they are inside, this can cool things off slightly by blowing warm air out of your room.
Ceiling fans can also be of benefit, but ensure it is blowing cool air down instead of pulling it up.
6. Top things off with cooling essential oils.
While they won't change the physical temperature of a room, certain essential oils have cooling scents that can also help promote sleep. Try diffusing a few drops of lavender, peppermint, eucalyptus, vetiver, sandalwood, or a combination of two or three of them next to your bed for sweet, cool dreaming.
Setting up a cold bedroom for sleep is an investment in your mood and energy levels. While it can be tough to do in summer, these quick hacks can help cool things down while amping up your room's style.
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