Giving someone a gift that will help them sleep better is a gift that keeps giving. Good sleep lasts all year long. Our holiday gift guide is live now, with gift ideas for everyone on your list. But what can help you sleep better besides the right mattress?
Comfortable, cool pillows can make all the difference in your sleep. If you’ve ever slept on old lumpy pillows, you know what I’m talking about. The wrong pillow for your sleep needs can worsen headaches, neck pain, shoulder and arm numbness, discomfort, sneezing, and wheezing. What makes a pillow “good” is ultimately up to the sleeper and can be based on preferred sleep position or physical needs. Here are some things to consider when shopping for a pillow:
-Sleep position. Sleeping on your back calls for a thinner pillow so your neck does not get pushed out of proper alignment. Side sleepers need a firmer pillow to fill the gap between your ear and outer shoulder. Stomach sleepers need the thinnest pillow possible. You may not even use a pillow for your head as a stomach sleeper but may want one for under your stomach to help with lower back pain.
-Pillow filling. There is no shortage when it comes to types of pillow filling options. Down/feather, synthetic/polyester, wool/cotton, foam, memory foam, latex, and any combination of this list are all options when it comes to what’s inside your pillow. Each has their benefits, but again, it ultimately comes down to preference.
-Other considerations. When shopping for yourself or someone else, it’s important to remember a few additional features of a pillow before selecting the perfect one. Thread count is not just for sheets. Usually, the higher the thread count, the better. Hypoallergenic materials are always a safe bet if you don’t know if someone has allergies. A high-quality pillow is resilient and can bounce back from folding and shaping quickly.
When choosing sheets, as mentioned above, thread count is always a factor. Sticking to 300-count sheets will be cost-efficient and comfortable. For even more luxury, you can step up the thread count, but the cost will step up, too. Sheet material is also important when making your selection. Cotton, bamboo, jersey, flannel, microfiber…these are all options and truly it comes down to personal preference, and sometimes, time of the year. For gift-giving, 300-count cotton sheets are always a safe bet.
Comforters, duvet covers, and blankets all make great additions to a well-made bed. This time of year, it’s always great to have layers on your bed as the temperature fluctuates throughout the night. Like pillows, comforters have different fillings to consider. Again, many times it comes down to personal preference, but a synthetic filling is usually hypoallergenic, washable, and will not breakdown easily.
Some people swear by their sleep mask, and others don’t know why you would wear one. Some of the benefits of a sleep mask are the added blackout effect and pressure on the sinuses. When the brain senses pure darkness, it increases the production of melatonin. Added pressure on the sinuses can act like a massage and also help improve circulation, therefore reducing swelling, around the eyes.