Tuesday Ten: Sleep Remedies for Your Best Beauty Sleep Ever

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Picture this: It’s a weeknight and you’ve gotten all settled into bed. Your body feels tired but your brain is still thinking leftover thoughts from the day you’ve just had. Hours go by, the clock ticks, and you are no closer to falling asleep at 3 a.m. than you were at 9 p.m. Morning comes early and you find yourself groggy, grumpy, and desperate for a cure to your nighttime restlessness…

I’ve had more nights like this than I would like to admit. But today I’m going to help you to avoid any future bouts of insomnia and start catching up on those much-needed zzz’s. Without further ado, here are 10 ways to help your body and mind fall asleep (and stay asleep!):

1. Take some melatonin.
Melatonin is a hormone that your brain makes to help your body fall asleep each night. It regulates your internal clock and gives you that natural feeling of drowsiness when your bedtime rolls around. So it should come as no surprise that taking this hormone in pill form will help with fall asleep faster. It’s a natural sleep remedy and can help with everything from jet lag to consistent insomnia. Just made sure you are taking the right dosage. Your body makes its own amount of this hormone naturally, so taking too much can disrupt your body’s natural melatonin production. Livestrong recommends taking anywhere from .3 to 5 mg per night.

2. Drink a bottle of Dream Water.
I recently discovered this remedy when I was browsing through the drugstore makeup isle and happening to stumble across this product. The description on the bottle claimed to be a “natural shot” of anxiety reducing, sleep inducing ingredients. Dream Water contains GABA, a neurotransmitter that helps reduce anxiety, and increase 5 HTP, an ingredient that helps to produce natural melatonin in your body. Long story short: I tried it, it works, and I highly recommend the “Paradise PM” flavor. Read more about Dream Water here.

3. Sip on sleepy time tea.
Any tea without caffeine will help to calm and relax you. And, despite what you may think, adding a little honey to your tea can help too. According to Health.com, honey can have a sedative effect and help you fall asleep faster. You can usually find teas that are labeled for bedtime at the grocery store. Or, try combining chamomile tea (which relaxes) with 15 to 30 drops of milky oat seed tincture (strengthens the nervous system) to make your own at-home sleepy time tea. (Whole Living)

4. Unwind with lavender.
According to Health.com, the smell of lavender has a relaxing effect that naturally aids in sleep. You can buy a spray and spritz it onto your pillow each night. Or (my personal favorite) rub a little lavender essential oil into the palms of your hands then brush it through your hair and give yourself a mini scalp massage. The smell is soothing, the scalp massage is relaxing, and and it’s a great way to your mind ready for sleep.

5. Take a hot shower or bath.
According to Discovery Fit & Health, taking a hot shower two hours before bedtime can relax your body and make it ready for sleep. On the other hand, it may awaken you and stimulate your blood flow. Test this one out and see if it works for you. If it does, make a nightly shower or bath part of your bedtime ritual. And if you find that it wakes you up, you may want to think about becoming a morning shower person instead.

6. Read a book.
…but not just any book. Make sure it’s not a page-turner (like Gone Girl) that will actually keep you awake at night. If you’re reading a story that you can’t put down, make it your “daytime read.”  Then pick a “bedtime book” that is less of a cliffhanger. A slow book will help your eyelids to get heavy, and chances are you’ll be asleep before you get to the next chapter.

7. Play a relaxing sound.
Many people find noises like the rainforest or the beach relaxing and soothing when trying to fall asleep. The reason behind this remedy is that our brains naturally crave sensory input, so when we try falling asleep in a quiet room, our minds will actually create “noise” in our heads, according to Dr. Ralph Pascualy, the medical director of Northwest Hospital Sleep Center. This “noise” can come in the form of stress, a to-do list, and other scattered thoughts that won’t turn off. So instead, actually playing a soothing sound can help to turn those other noises inside your brain off.  You can buy a sound machine, download relaxing sounds on iTunes, or even play a YouTube video (like this one). Just make sure to turn the brightness on your computer screen all the way down so that the glow doesn’t keep you awake. Which brings us to our next point…

8. Keep your room cold and dark.
Early humans grew accustomed to sleeping in cold dark places such as caves (hence, cavemen). Now that we are way out of the cave phase and in an era of civilization, creating a cave-like atmosphere might actually bring your body back to its roots and help it to sleep more soundly. Make your room cold by turning on the AC or buying a fan, which will help add a little white noise as well. Block out any light by hanging blackout curtains in your windows, stuffing towels under door cracks, or turning off all blinking and twinkling electronics that may be in your room. Yes, that means turning your phone on silent and flipping it upside down for the night.

9. Wake up earlier.
Rising with the sun will help you go to sleep easier at night when you’ve had a full busy day that started off early. Sleeping in late, however, may throw off your sleeping schedule and give you energy until the wee hours of the next morning. Make an effort to wake up early if you want to go to bed at a reasonable time each night. And start to make this a part of your regular sleep schedule. According to Apartment Therapy, you need at least two good nights of sleep to get deep, restorative rest. Three nights is ideal.

10. Have a bedtime snack.
If you like a late night snack, you will be pleased to learn that it might actually be helping you snooze each night. Make sure you’re choosing the right foods. High carb, low-protein snacks like toast are easy on your stomach and can ease your brain into sleep, according to Health.com. Drinking a glass of warm milk before bedtime is also an age-old sleep remedy that helps you fall into a deep slumber because it contains tryptophan, a chemical that helps the brain ease into sleep mode. Other foods to snack on before bedtime include cottage cheese, cashews, chicken, turkey, soybeans and tuna. Just make sure it’s a snack, not a meal. Going to bed on a full stomach can actually make your body work overtime to digest the food, thus keeping you awake.

Once you’ve tried a sleep remedy that works for you, keep yourself on a good sleep cycle by starting a sleep journal. Log in what you eat or do before bedtime and then in the morning, record if you slept well or not. This will help you to see insomnia triggers as well as some new sleep remedies you may discover on your own!

Do you have any bedtime tricks that help you fall asleep?

Share them in the comments below so I can learn something new!

xx
Allison
Team LC

Photo: Wildfox
Sources: Discovery Fit & Health, Helpguide.org, Health.com, Livestrong, Dream Water, Whole Living, Apartment Therapy
Categories: Allison Norton, Grow
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  • Monica_in_Heels

    Good ideas!!!

    I rarely get enough sleep

    http://www.monicainheels.com

  • Ana Sofia

    Nice tips. I think is importante to have natural ways to falling asleep like read a book, play a relaxing sound or take a hot shower :) Take pills for sleep isn’t healthy.

    Xoxo,
    http://mmthanwords.blogspot.pt/

  • suzanne

    I always have a some trouble falling into sleep. These great tips might help!
    xoxo
    Suzanne from http://www.writtenbysuzanne.com

  • Jordan Estep

    I rarely have trouble falling asleep. It is the getting out of bed part that I have a problem with! Any tips on motivation to wake up a bit earlier?? :)

  • Maddieknockonwood

    My problem when I sleep is that I start thinking of my future, whether it is tomorrow or next year. Then I get really anxious and I can’t sleep, because all I can think of are scenarios which I may have to face. What I do to keep myself from thinking is I begin a dream in my head, or continue one from the night before. It is like reading a book, but with the lights off.

  • Ashley Rizzardo

    I always read before bed; I find that it really does help my mind unwind from the day. I have noticed also that since I have started waking up earlier for my workouts it has been easier to fall asleep at night!

    Ashley
    http://allthatglitters.co.nr

  • Ashley

    These are all helpful tips for when you are in need of help unwinding. That Dream Water one is very interesting. I’ve never heard of such a thing. Does it taste like flavored water or more like juice? Does it contain anything you could get hooked on? Thanks for this post! http://dreamliveandrepeat.blogspot.com/

  • Deanne Castro

    I can use these tips! I am sleep deprived!

    For more fashion and beauty advice, check out my blog: http://myfashavenue.com/

    Today’s blog post: Get The BANG Look!

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    xo
    Deanne

  • LaurenConrad.com

    What time you exercise is definitely a big one to consider when thinking of sleep. Thanks for the tips!

  • Jade Wright

    Ah awesome tips and advice. I’ve heard chamomile tea works like a charm, going to try it tomorrow night :)

    http://www.bohemianmuses.blogspot.com

  • Sanam / a chic lifestyle

    Great article Allison!

    I definitely need to practice tip 9, my sleeping patterns are completely out of whack!

    And as for sleeping with soothing sounds, my favourite app for this is Rain Sounds. It’s so calming! :)

    A Chic Lifestyle

  • Sanam / a chic lifestyle

    Great article Allison!

    I definitely need to practice tip 9, my sleeping patterns are completely out of whack!

    And as for sleeping with soothing sounds, my favourite app for this is Rain Sounds. It’s so calming! :)

    http://achiclifestyle.com

  • Emma Acomb

    I take melatonin all the time!

  • Harmony

    I take Melatonin, listen to soothing music on my MP3 while I read and have lavender Downey on my sheets and a lavender sachet in my pillow. Having my cat next to me purring makes sleep no problem.

  • Taanjaa

    I almost never have trouble with sleeping, but I do find the trick with the book is always good!

    http://tanjamortensen.com/

  • OpheliaEvern

    Thanks for the tips! I’m a BIG fan of lavender, I always have a lavender candle lit to make my room smell lovely(I blow it out when I’m going to sleep or gong out of course!) x

    opheliaevernote.blogspot.com

  • Alicia k

    I drink a cup of Yogi bedtime tea and add about a tsp of honey about an hour before I go to bed to help with sleep. I like this tea b/c it also gives you a yoga move to do to help with sleep. I also turn on a small fan on my nightstand to help with keeping me cool and for noise. It really helps to keep my mind from going and going.

  • elisabeth

    I love drinking chamomile with honey before bed. I also spray a lavender chamomile body mist from bath and body works. It is the best smell in the world to fall asleep to : )

  • Sarah

    My favorite bedtime snack is a glass of water, a peanut butter sandwhich, and a lil bit of fruit. It keeps me full the whole night, because I tend to get so hungry in the middle of night. I also watch a lil bit of TV before I go to sleep…which is probably bad, but it helps me! :)

  • LaurenConrad.com

    It’s most important to do what works best for you! Great ideas.

  • Raven Locks

    I’ve tried almost all of these. Melatonin works, but it has me feeling a little groggy in the morning. The thing that works best for me is to wake up early and get some morning sun! That usually fixes my sleep schedule :)

    xo Azu

    http://www.raven-locks.blogspot.com

  • Ashley at Sincerely Miss Ash

    I have never tried Melatonin but I have heard a lot of good things about it. I always have a cup of tea before bed and find it helps a lot..

    xo,
    http://sincerelymissashley.blogspot.ca

  • Sofia Alleyne

    Awesome Tips. Thanks for sharing!!
    http://www.discountpleasurecentre.com.au

  • makeupfaerie14

    Having a relaxing hot detox bath really works, it makes you really sleepy, and I think that right before bed is the perfect time to have it, definitely not in the morning or afternoon, because you body needs to rest afterwards. I like to take really deep slow relaxing breaths once I’m in bed, one time I fell asleep after just 10 deep breaths! Try it, it works! :)

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  • Jessica

    I’ve found that being on my computer right before I go to bed keeps me awake, so I try to shut it down at least an hour before bed. Reading also really helps too!

  • Amy hartung

    I battle wicked insomnia. I must try some of these!

  • Katelin Absher

    great tips! I battle with insomnia so I def have to take melatonin or a sleep aid for bed time and I usually have some sleepy time tea!!

    http://www.katelinkonfidential.blogspot.com

  • Tanisha

    my daughters bear plays ocean sounds and that usually works for me too.

  • Leanne

    Great tips. GABA definitely helps!

    Love from South Africa

    http://arumlilea.blogspot.com

  • photosbyjaana

    i almost always fall asleep watching TV! or sometimes a boring game on the iphone works.
    http://www.thismomsgonnasnap.com

  • erika garcia

    these are awesome tips!! but what I would like to know further about, is where to get the sheets, pillow cases from the photo :) oh! and also the eye mask, so adorable!!!

  • Heather M

    I’m a huge fan of Dream Silk Comfort cream – just later my hands up with the lavender scented cream and settle in for a good nights sleep!

    http://www.kohls.com/product/prd-235904/earth-therapeutics-dream-silk-comfort-cream.jsp

  • Dana Massey

    Great tips! My problem is staying asleep. I wake up at least twice each night. And sometimes can’t get back to sleep. Any tips for staying asleep all night?

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  • Dana Ivy

    Could have used these tricks last night!! Couldn’t fall asleep for the life of me!!!!!!

    Xo
    Dana Ivy
    http://www.iadorewhatilove.com – Check out my blog!

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  • Diamenrose

    Some of these tips are from Lauren Conrad’s beauty right :)? AWesome! I like the idea with the ‘boring’ book

  • Stephanie Shrewsbury

    I picked up the Dream Water last night and gave it a try. CVS has a buy 1 (2 pak)get the second 50% off. It def made me tired and relaxed within 30 minutes of taking it. I would recommend this product or GNC sells the individual ingredients in capsule forms (cause the Dream Water is not cheap) you could prob make it at home yourself. Im going to give it a try.

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  • Allison Norton

    So glad all of you liked my post! Keep leaving your tips and tricks below. xx

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  • Kate Noto

    I will Skype my man before bed, wash my face, write in my diary, and read a book. After that I will put lotion on and then go to bed.

  • Lena Ameri

    This is an awesome article! There are also a lot of foods you can eat that naturally contain melatonin to help you sleep. Check out this article: http://www.liveitmag.com/foods-that-help-you-fall-asleep/

  • nrsmeg17

    I like Celestial Season’s Sleepy time extra tea. It tastes wonderful too!

  • thehealthycollective.com
  • Heather Cameron

    I enjoy chatting with my partner about our days and any worries we have. That way we go to sleep with clear minds. X

  • Kathrynsopenbook

    Good post. I like the sound of the rain pouring. It has the sense of feeling cozy.

    http://kathrynsopenbook.blogspot.com/

  • Liv

    https://soundcloud.com/hay-house-uk/brian-weiss-a-meditation-to

    Try this meditation, I really enjoyed it. Relaxing!

  • Adrianna Verges

    I read this post on January (when I found your page, which I’m totally in love with!!) at the time, I was having insomnia problems… And I have to say: THANK YOU!!! My new bedtime routine? I make sure to dim the lights in my room (a little lamp or candle does the trick), set the a.c. or fan to keep it cool, keep my sheets clean and/or spray some Febreze for “aromatherapy”, and the lavender oil on my skin after my bedtime shower, OMG! bedtime, is one of my favorite times of day :)
    xoxo, Adrianna V.

  • Jess Dalton

    ASMR videos on YouTube are amazing. Most of the time, I fall asleep before the video is over.

  • Lesley

    Fingers crossed that these actually work! I’m definitely giving them a try! x
    http://www.rawvogue.com

  • Katie Rose

    Marijuana

  • http://www.stylelistaconfessions.com/ Stylelista Confessions

    I definitely agree with sleepy time tea and lavender!
    Xo stylelista
    http://Www.stylelistaconfessions.com

  • http://amycristabulhoes.blogspot.com Amy Manchester

    take Ambien

  • jbrett

    I can only fall asleep after a nice, long foot rub. So I’ve told my boyfriend he’ll be getting a lot of practice at this!

  • http://www.smart-twenties.com/ Samantha Brown

    Love these tips! I’ve found that waking up earlier is a huge help and I try to make sure I’m not glued to my iPhone or laptop right before bed because I can never get to sleep easily when I do!

    But I’m definitely not perfect and I often watch Grey’s Anatomy or Kardashians on my laptop in bed right before I go to sleep (but it’s worth it haha)

    Sam xx
    http://www.smart-twenties.com

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