I don't really know who Napoleon Bonaparte was (I doubt French people know who Oduduwa is), but when he said, "The bed has become a place of luxury to me. I would not exchange it for all the thrones in the world"; I felt it deep in my spirit. I love sleeping. I love being in bed. My bed is my happy place. But it didn't use to be. About a year ago, I used to dread sleeping. I would go to bed and wake up with back pains, body aches and headaches. I didn't know why until my friend came over and pointed out that the culprit was my entire bedding situation - mattress, pillows and even my sheets.
Sleep deprivation, which low-quality beddings can cause, increases your risk of developing heart disease by 48%, amongst other side effects including reduced libido, soreness and memory loss.
Over the last couple of months, I've invested in intentionally creating a cosy place to lay my head, and I'm here to share tips with you. Let's make your bed the grown a** adult style. Here's what you need:
- The mattress
Your mattress is the foundation of a good night's sleep. There are different mattress options to choose from based on the material used — memory foam, innerspring, latex, and hybrid. However, you may come across other options, like a waterbed or airbed. I recommend going into a mattress store to determine which materials would be best for you. Your spine will thank you for paying extra attention to this part of the bedding process.
2. At least 4 pillows
The easiest way to know if you love yourself is to take a long, hard look at your pillows. Here's an exercise: Fold your pillow in half. If it springs back, keep it. If not, you must visit the nearest bedding store and get new ones. I prefer memory foam pillows because of the modal support they give my neck; however, because they can be pricey, I hacked it by purchasing 2 memory foam pillows for the top half of my pillow stack and 2 feather pillows for the bottom half. 4 pillows are non-negotiable. You're an adult now.
I've never been a thread count kind of gal, mainly because they are ridiculously expensive; however, if you can afford them, opt for sheets with the highest thread count. The higher the thread count, the more durable the sheet is. Whatever you do, ensure you have 100 per cent cotton or linen sheets. Any colour will do, although I love a classic white sheet set. Nothing screams I'm a classy grown-up than a white sheet set. And for the love of everything, please ensure your bedsheets and pillowcases match. Thank you.
4. A mattress topper
Everyone who knows me knows I advocate for the mattress topper. A mattress topper is what differentiates your home bed from a 5-star hotel bed (amongst other things). A mattress topper makes your bed firmer or softer and increases its durability. Again, I prefer mattress toppers made of memory foam, but cheaper options exist.
5. Fluffy duvet insert and a duvet cover
You're no longer an undergrad living in the hostel. You need an actual duvet insert complete with a cover that matches your sheets to keep you warm during cold nights. As with every other component of your bed, the devil is in the material. Do you want a thick duvet insert or a softer one?
6. Runner blanket
While this doesn't exactly contribute health-wise, it adds to your bed's overall look, feel and cosiness. Since my sheets, pillowcases, and duvet cover are a solid colour, I prefer that my runner blanket is crocheted wool to give a textured look and pop of colour.
7. Throw pillows and shams
The more pillows, the merrier. :)
Oh, one more thing: lay your bed first when you wake up. There's some psychological theory about this that I will not bore you with. Honestly, I only do it because I imagine myself recording one of those 'A Day In My Life' TikToks. ;)