According to wellness trend reports, collectively, we have never been more obsessed with sleep.
And not only that, we are all becoming more and more aware of just how important sleep is – for our health, wellbeing, mental state, heck, even for our looks.
It is ironic then, that for most of us, we sleep less than we should, and not deep enough to actually leave us feeling rested and ready for the day when the morning rolls around.
And so I decided to do something about it – cultivate an evening routine that would do all that – feel relaxing, make me want to get into bed early, and make sure I sleep well and deep and good – as I knew I needed it.
What I craved, was a mindful nighttime routine that calmed me down, helped my sleep and – in turn – would boost my energy the next day.
I tried a few tips and tricks, read up on rituals and routines, and tested tons of different products and gadgets, and now, six months on, I have never slept better, and swear it might just be down to these three changes:
1. I turn my evening skincare into a ritual
Writing about beauty, I have always been diligent about removing makeup and doing my skincare routine before going to bed. Even if I had been out and it was late, I would never get into bed without washing my face and putting on some cream or product.
However, it was always a bit of a last-minute thing, rushing to the bathroom before crawling into bed, often done while I was also brushing my teeth and pulling out clothes for the next day.
Now, though, I have started making my evening skincare routine into a bit of a delicious ritual, and something I really look forward to. I change into my bathrobe, tie my hair up and away from my face with a hairband, and lock myself in the bathroom for 20 minutes every night – and I swear, it has become some of my favourite minutes of the day.
I will put on a podcast sometimes, other times some music, and really just relish in pampering myself for a few minutes every evening. It makes me feel calm and cared for – and it has made my entire evening and bedtime routine so soothing and luxurious. I love trying new products and beauty gadgets, and at the moment, here are a couple of items I am obsessed with as part of my new evening ritual.
Nunaia Superfood Cleansing Balm
This plant-based cleansing balm deeply cleans and removes impurities without stripping or drying my skin. Made with soothing and nourishing rainforest active ingredients sacha inchi and maracuja, which contain high levels of vitamin A, C, E, antioxidants and essential fatty acids, it leaves my skin soft, comfortable and hydrated.
I love the ethos of this Irish company too, knowing that not only is the product vegan and cruelty-free, but that Nunaia also supports the growers and their communities in the Peruvian Andes and Amazon Rainforest.
Aliso Ultrasonic Skin Exfoliating Tool
This amazing gadget makes it feel like I am having a facial right at home in my own bathroom. It can be used in two ways, either in ‘cleansing mode,’ where you can use it with your face cleanser (I use it with the cleansing balm above) to really give your skin a deep clean, or in ‘lift mode’ where it helps firm and tone your facial muscles.
I am obsessed with the lift mode, as it stimulates circulation, tones facial muscles, and improves microcirculation, meaning it helps all my other creams and serums work harder too, as they can penetrate deeper into my skin.
I use this once or twice a week, and I swear, my skin has never looked more radiant.
2. I turned my bedroom into a sanctuary
No more Netflix in bed or checking e-mails on my phone.
I made a decision a while back to keep my bedroom tech-free, and honestly, it has probably been the change that had the most dramatic effect when it comes to my sleep.
Meaning, that rather than a room that’s one part cluttered clothing chaos, one part at-home office, and one part Netflix home-theater, I have made an effort to turn my bedroom into a peaceful, hotel-like oasis. And I swear, these little changes sure make a difference. I keep books on my night table, to make sure I read before bed, instead of scroll. I added plants as they are great for air quality and I keep my bed super-cosy with throws and cushions, and make an effort to always keep it tidy.
Here are a few products that I am obsessed with for my bedroom:
Amurelle Linen Bedding
Sleeping in linen is such a delicious feeling, and suddenly, my own bed feels like the most fabulous boutique hotel. I am obsessed with my new Amurelle sheets – they were an investment, but the best thing about linen, is that they will just keep getting softer and more comfortable the more they are used.
From €269, Amurelle.com
Ikea Starkvind Air Purifier Table
My new nightstand table from Ikea is part side table, part smart air purifier and I swear, it really has made a difference to my sleep. I simply turn it on for about half an hour before I go to bed at night, and turn it off when I am ready to go asleep, and voila – the air I am breathing throughout the night is cleaner and better for me, meaning – better and deeper sleep.
3. The little extras
Now for the little extras that have helped make my bedtime routine even more relaxing and my sleep better.
This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray
Scent is such a powerful tool, and I love using a pillow spray to really get that hotel feel at home. And the best one I have tried is this Deep Sleep Pillow Spray from This Works.
Infused with the calming floral notes of lavender, chamomile and vetivert, the spray lingers on bed linen and in the air, meaning, as I drift off to sleep, I am breathing in the delicate fragrance and I swear, it really makes a difference.
Lumie Body Clock
When I stopped bringing my phone into the bedroom, it also meant I could no longer use it as my alarm clock, which I had been doing for years.
A friend tipped me off about the Lumie clocks, and honestly, I don’t know how I have lived without this in my life until now.
The Lumie alarm clock mimics the light and colour of a real sunrise, so when I open my eyes in the morning, I feel properly awake and refreshed – and this definitively made a difference in the darker months, when I always struggle to wake up properly when it is still dark outside.
And actually, waking like this helps to regulate your sleep-wake cycle and has even been shown to boost mood, energy and productivity levels for the rest of the day.