There's a reason it's called beauty sleep. While you snooze, your body is hard at work repairing and renewing cells, which helps improve the appearance and health of your skin. When you don't get enough shut-eye, it takes a toll on your appearance and is detrimental to your overall health (chronic lack of sleep has been linked to high blood pressure and depression, among other things).
But sometimes the hardest part of getting enough sleep isn't the decision to not watch one more episode of Gilmore Girls—it's, well, actually falling asleep once you crawl into bed. If you find yourself tossing and turning, unable to doze off (and thus overcompensating with five cups of coffee the next morning), it's time to try one of these tips. They'll have you drifting off in no time.
Keep reading to see six tips that will help you fall asleep—fast.
This method involves putting firm pressure on certain points on your body for relaxation. The pillowcase-sized Bulletproof Sleep Induction Mat ($50) was inspired by acupuncture techniques from China, Russia, India, and the Middle East. It stimulates acupressure points along your back, which purportedly increases your blood circulation and releases endorphins that eliminate muscle tension and anxiety, making it easier to nod off.
When you fall asleep, your body temperature drops slightly. Mimic this by adjusting your thermostat so your bedroom is between 65 and 72 degrees, and you’ll nod off faster.
Dim the lights about an hour before bedtime to let your body know that it's time to start producing melatonin. Most light bulbs use blue light, which tells your body not to make melatonin, which is not conducive to falling asleep. (Blue light is the wavelength that most lightboxes use to help people wake up in the morning.)
The Good Night Bulb ($70) filters out blue light, effectively nixing the melatonin-blocking wavelength. NASA astronauts use the bulb in space to help them sleep.
Chamomile tea and warm milk get most of the credit when it comes to slumber-inducing beverages, but a recent study from Louisiana State University indicated that cherry juice could be just the thing to sip before bed. It's a natural source of both melatonin and tryptophan, which can help you fall asleep faster and sleep better.
Creating a pre-bed ritual is a proven way to help get your body into sleep mode, because it begins to associate certain activities with sleeping. If your ritual involves reading on a tablet, try sticking a Sleepshield ($30) on it first. While winding down with a book before bed is a better ritual than playing Candy Crush, the glowing light of your tablet can be counterproductive to the "go to sleep" vibes you're trying to send to your brain. The Sleepshield cover helps cut out the sleep-hindering blue light that's emanating from your device.
Which of these tips will you try tonight? And find out how much sleep you really need per night here.