We all struggle switching off. Busy work and social lives, a society that is constantly ‘on’ and readily available at all hours, it’s no wonder we struggle to relax and most of all sleep. With technology surrounding us 24/7 it isn’t helping either. A recent calculation by Mediakix showed, the average person spends a minimum of 40 minutes – YouTube, Facebook (35), Snapchat (25), Instagram (15) and Twitter (one) and projected those figures out over a lifetime, arriving at a sizeable total of a five years and four months. When the brain clocks blue light, it slows this shutdown process, assuming the glow of your laptop is, in fact, daylight – an indicator that you should be wide awake. It follows, then, that TVs, phones, laptops and so on are best kept as far away from the bedroom as possible. Go so far as to charge your smartphone in a different room during the night. Your bedroom should be a space dedicated to sleep and sleep alone (with one obvious exception – the kind you’ll gladly stay awake for).
Like anything which improves our mental and physical state, the issue of sleep attracts a lot of attention, and a lot of conflicting advice. Popular belief states that eight hours’ sleep is the optimum for our health, while some specialists suggest tuning in to our circadian rhythms or waking at the crack of dawn for optimum success.
So what is the secret? Well believe it or not we’re going to be honest and say there is no perfect remedy, all you can do is make yourself, mind and body as relaxed as possible before you hit the hay to get some Z’s. We’re going to walk you through some of the essential products out there to help you along the way, so lay back and relax.
Let’s start with the most important piece of the puzzle. The mattress. Casper, the online bed-in-a-box maker launched in April 2014. The concept was simple: Produce the best mattress possible at an affordable price, sell a single model, and deliver it quickly, for free, with a 100-day trial period. It worked: Casper had sales of $1 million in its first month. The New York City company has since raised $70 million in venture capital, grown to 120 employees, and hit $100 million in cumulative sales.
We’ve been testing out the brands standard double mattress for the last 40 nights. Like most, we’re more accustomed to a standard spring mattress with the usual options of comfort ranging from firm to soft. On opening the 4 foot box – that’s how your mattress arrives and in less than 48 hours after it was ordered may we add – you are welcomed by a hand written note wishing you a peaceful nights sleep, along with a useful diagram of how to unwrap and set up your mattress. So, bed time arrives, we find the mattress is slightly firmer than average in our opinion, however it does a unbelievable job of conforming to the natural curves of your body thanks to it’s memory foam structure. Unlike traditional memory foam mattresses, this superbly comfortable Casper mattress is designed to help you ‘sleep cool’. With an open-cell top layer it uses convection and conduction to flow heat away from your body. Similarly, the memory foam layer leverages airflow to pull heat out of the top layer, leaving you cool and comfortable during the night allowing undisturbed sleep.
In our option this is a must have mattress, regardless of sleep or lack there of, Casper reins supreme in comfort and style. We will happily say we have just had the best 40 nights sleep of our lives and that we are now and forever a Casper customer. We’re looking forward to many more peaceful nights sleep to come. Casper, from £350
L’Occitane Pillow Mist Spray
Creating calm and relaxing environment before you sleep is essential – you need to rid your head and body of all distractions and that includes the electronic kind. Simple things such as opening a window and using room spray to mist both your sheets and the air above your bed is an effective way of allowing your senses to calm and relax. Our favourite is L’Occitane pillow mist spray, containing the essential oils of lavender, bergamot, mandarin, sweet orange and geranium this is sure to send you drifting off. L’Occitane, £18
Do you wear slippers? It’s a valid question and most guys would reminisce about their grandfather and a ‘pipe and slippers’ type scenario. Now days bags are thrown to the side, sneakers kicked off and zombie mode is in full swing after a long day of moaning clients, ignorant bosses and that dreadful commute. It’s time to start your downtime the moment you walk through the door, so switch it up and swap those sweaty socks for the new age of slipper.
Mahabis are redefining the game with their slipper which, minimalist in design as well as luxurious in comfort underfoot, are a must have for anyone searching for calm. A sheepskin in sock, modelled on a sports shoe design, provides a tight, cushioned fit. Its grey exterior is constructed from lightweight, breathable material, they’re more than at home on couch cushions and rugged floors. With a detachable sole made of thermoplastic polyurethane they’re even for suitable for taking out the rubbish in comfort. So we’ll ask again, do you wear slippers? Mahabis, £79
These products may not be enough to solve your sleep problem completely, however they’ll help you on the start of your journey of better sleep. Remember, a better nights sleep can be a game changer for your mood and productivity for the following day. So do us all a favour, it’s time to start taking your downtime seriously.