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How did you sleep last night? Did you have trouble falling asleep? Did you toss and turn restlessly? Or wake up at the slightest noise? Well, you’re not alone.
It comes as no surprise that the latest research into how we are sleeping has revealed that over a third of us suffer from some degree of insomnia. And, alarmingly, 30% of us are actually sleep deprived.
There are countless studies that show our sleep patterns are becoming more erratic and out of control, resulting in nightly anxiety and restlessness – and then exhaustion and irritability the next day. But the good news is that there are plenty of natural products to help you sleep better!
According to sleep experts, it’s the increased amount of time we spend on mobile phones, as well as in front of screens, that is keeping us up at night. I know myself that when I’ve been on my computer or phone before bedtime, my sleep is definitely more disrupted.
With Google searches for sleep remedies going through the roof, a growing number of people like me are looking for natural, rather than pharmaceutical cures for insomnia and sleep disturbances.
Why you need a bedtime ritual
I believe that a bedtime ritual can really improve how – and for how long – you sleep. When I take my own advice and make the effort to follow a ritual, boy, do I notice the difference!
If you want a good night’s sleep, investing in a bedtime routine is essential. Simply climbing into bed and expecting to fall into a deep sleep when you haven’t spent time unwinding just isn’t going to work – unless you’re very lucky!
Using sleep-promoting products, such as herbal teas, essential oils, pillow sprays, can really help make bedtime more of a ritual, as well as lulling you into a better night’s sleep.
In the name of research, I’ve been on a mission to track down – and road-test – the best natural sleep-enhancing products on the market.
Here are 7 of the most effective sleep products that I’ve found in 2019.
The Magnificent 7: My favourite natural sleep remedies
I absolutely LOVE Pukka teas. I drink them throughout the day as a healthy – and delicious – alternative to caffeinated beverages.
Starting the day with Cleanse, a blend of nettle leaf, dandelion root and fennel seed, peppermint and aloe vera. I have a mid-morning cuppa of Turmeric Gold, with turmeric, lemon fruit and aromatic cardamom. Early afternoon, I’ll have a brew of Clean Matcha Green, then Three Mint in the late afternoon.
So, it’s no surprise that I’m also a fan of Pukka’s Night Time, which is my pre-bedtime tipple. Infused with herbal ingredients and extracts such as licorice root, chamomile flower and lavender, it’s no wonder that I start to feel relaxed and begin to unwind after a few sips. This is part of my evening routine and I’m convinced that it encourages my body to tell my mind that it’s bedtime soon!
I have my Night Time tea at around 9pm, which also serves as a useful reminder to switch off my phone, and to stop checking my emails. I’ve noticed that when I look at emails or texts after 9pm, I just end up being stressed.
9pm is also a good cut off time for liquid intake too. If you drink anything after this, you’re more likely to need a trip the bathroom during the night! Best avoided if you want to sleep deeply for longer!
If you would like to try thesePukka nighttime teas you can purchase them here.
If you haven’t discovered DoTerra Essential Oils, you really should give them a try. High quality and made with the purest ingredients, they are available as single oils or blends, as well as for external and internal use.
My absolutely favourite nighttime oil is DoTerra Lavender Oil. I diffuse a few drops an hour before bed to fill my bedroom with the calming aroma of Lavender. If I’m feeling particularly anxious, I mix a few drops of Lavender Oil with a little coconut oil, and massage this soothing blend into the soles of my feet.
Essential oils are absorbed more rapidly in areas where we have more sebaceous glands – face and back – or where the epidermal (deeper) layers are thinnest – hands, feet and wrists. I find that it takes around 20 minutes for the oil to be absorbed and to take effect.
Lavender is known to be calming, and to be a natural sedative – and it smells like my Grandma’s drawers! But don’t let that put you off! This oil works fast and is really effective.
If I ever wake up during the night feeling anxious, I put some drops on the palms of my hand and inhale it in deeply – this works EVERY single time! I’m asleep again within 15 minutes.
If you would like to try DoTerra Lavender Oil, you can purchase it here. (Don’t be tempted to buy another cheaper oil – I’ve tried that and they don’t work as well!)
3. Spacemask (five in a pack)
These self-heating eye masks are quirky and a little bit different – and that’s probably why I love them so much. They help to reduce stress, and to relieve eye strain and tiredness by taking you, quite literally, to another dimension!
Simply remove a Spacemask from its foil wrapper, unfold it, and it immediately starts to heat up. Place it over your eyes, hooking it around your ears to keep it in place – and inhale the gorgeous jasmine aroma.
It’s such a soothing sensation – you can literally feel the stress melting away. An added bonus is the fact that you have to lie down while the mask works its magic which forces you to relax and unwind, preparing you for a great night’s sleep.
If you would like to try space masks you can purchase them here.
In my experience, there is definitely a link between essential oils and herbs – and getting a good night’s sleep. Neom Pillow Spray is infused with lavender, jasmine and basil, three natural plant-based ingredients that are renowned for promoting sleep and aiding relaxation.
Neom products are made with 100% natural fragrances, without harsh chemicals and all ingredients are ethically sourced.
Simply spritz your pillows generously with Neom Pillow Spray just before you climb into bed.
Not only will your bed linen smell fresher, the delicious soothing aroma will carry you off to the Land of Nod in no time at all. It’s a winner!
If you would like to purchase this pillow spray, you can find it here.
5. Himalayan Salt Lamps
I love my Himalayan Salt Lamps. They give off such a soothing amber glow that I feel instantly relaxed just by looking at them. The glow is similar to that of a campfire or of candlelight, making it the perfect night light as it won’t disturb your sleep.
Salt Lamps are also thought to reduce stress, while helping to re-energise and revitalise the body.
They are also believed to absorb airborne pollutants and protect against the negative effects of WiFi and other electronic devices that can disrupt our sleep.
I switch on my Salt Lamp about half an hour before going to bed. It also makes my bedroom more inviting too!
Read more in my Himalayan Salt Lamp post here.
Half a capful of this luxurious bath oil is enough to transform your bathroom into a tranquil paradise. Incredibly soothing and nurturing, and suitable for even for the most sensitive skins like mine, Olverum is hydrating enough not to need cream after bathing, but not so oily that your clothes or bedlinen will be oil-stained.
Having moisturised skin is pleasure enough, but soaking in a bath inhaling the aroma of True Lavender, Juniper, Geranium, Eucalyptus and Lemon is unbelievably calming and relaxing.
Invest in this oil and you won’t be disappointed by either your skin’s post-bath feel and appearance, or with the deep sleep you’ll enjoy after an Olverum soak!
If you would like to try this bath oil you can purchase it here.
New studies into our how our digestive systems work have shown that our gut is like a second ‘brain’. The gut’s microbiota (bacteria) even influence the body’s level of the neurotransmitter serotonin, which regulates feelings of happiness.
Researchers have found that when we are lacking in good intestinal bacteria, it almost always impacts negatively on our immune system, concentration levels, mood – and sleep.
A combination of four different types of lactobacilli and bifidobacterium, Just for Tummies are vegan-friendly, and free from gluten, fillers, binders or bulking agents.
After taking these Just For Tummies Live Bacteria Capsules, (I have to say I was swayed by the gorgeous packaging!) my sleep improved dramatically after a couple of weeks.
Easy to swallow, I take one in the morning and one before bed, and have found that my sleep is much less restless and definitely deeper.
Just for Tummies Capsules are also beneficial for anyone suffering from digestive complaints such as IBS or bloating, or for anyone on Instagram, you will know what I mean when I say they are very photogenic too!
If you would like to try these just for tummies you can purchase them here.
Or check out the rest of Linda’s range here. (So many fabulous women’s supplements to choose from on the Just for Tummies site!)
Let me know if you try any of these products and like them!
Have you read my Tips on natural winter remedies yet?