The quality of our nighttime slumber depends on so many different variables. The temperature of the room, the lack of intrusive light and the presence of a peaceful mind all have an important role to play in your experience of sleep. But one element that is all too often overlooked, which is surprising given that it lends itself primarily to your comfort, is your pillow.
As the pinnacle of physical support and comfort, your relationship with your pillow is a firmly unique one. No two dreamers find the peace of sleep on the same road; some may prefer to sleep on their side, whilst others may find comfort sleeping face down. Yet if your morning is being constantly greeted by unwanted pain in your neck and spine, you could be opting for a pillow position that’s not quite right for you. So for this reason, we’d like to take this opportunity to uncover the head-resting truth about what part our pillow plays in our sleep.
If you sleep on your back: Whilst this position is highly hailed for keeping your neck, back and head consistently aligned during your sleep, it’s also noted for causing excessive strain on your lumbar spine; or the area towards the bottom of your back. To tackle this problem, you’ll need not one, but two pillows to hand. The first, which will be allocated to support your head, will ideally be one that leans towards the thinner side of filling, as it will elevate your head just high enough to achieve a neutral position for your spine; whilst also not creating an excessive gap between your neck and the mattress. You should place the second pillow, which should be filled a little more generously than its counterpart, snuggly beneath your knees, as this will raise your thighs to alleviate the uncomfortable, and sometimes damaging, amount of pressure being exerted on your lumbar spine region.
If you sleep on your side: For many, sleeping on the side comes as the most instinctive and comfortable position to achieve sleep. But with your shoulder pushing down below you, you’re unintentionally creating a wider gap between yourself and the mattress, which will exert unwanted force on your spine accordingly. Further down the bed, you’ll find that your upper leg will twist over your hips, and this will cause total derailment of your spine if encountered regularly. To counteract this, we suggest opting for the help of two pillows. The first should be formed of a firmer filling, and will help to support your head. Being not too high, and not too shallow, this pillow will allow for your spine to be kept in comfortable and total alignment; without letting your head sink or rise excessively in the process. The next pillow will stop that upper leg from twisting over, and should be placed firmly between the knees; relieving pressure on the pelvis and lower spine in the process.
If you sleep on your front: As the least forgiving feature on our list, sleeping on your front will wreak havoc on your spinal alignment; and may actually be to blame for your endlessly sleepless nights. This is because the position forces your neck upwards at an unnatural angle, whilst you’ll also have to turn your head if you’re interested in breathing! Pillow wise, we suggest one that’s considerably less filled. Ideally, you want your spine to be kept at straight as possible, and a pillow with a thicker filling will elevate your head and neck to dizzying heights; accumulating with it, aching, numbness and posture pain. Therefore, the slimmer the pillow, the better!
The depth, position and consistency of your pillow is of course an important factor in the development of your posture, but if you’re interested in reaping the full benefits of beauty sleep, it’s within your best interest to also consider such factors as your pillow covering too. Cotton, which tends to be the most popular choice of material for pillowcases, is incredibly porous, meaning that it will suck the hydration from anything it touches; including your skin and hair! The friction between cotton and the delicate areas of the face will also greatly contribute to the early onset of wrinkles, and that sounds like nothing but a nightmare!
A key alternative to cotton, which has caught considerable traction within recent years, are pillowcases made of smoother materials; such as satin, velvet or linen. These extraordinary covers will keep the moisture in your skin and hair exactly where it needs to be, whilst greatly reducing the friction between itself and your skin, meaning less wrinkles in the morning. And just as an added bonus, super soft materials are a total dream to sleep with too! That’s why when we slip into our slumber, we struggle to drift off if our pillows aren’t sporting one of our Luxury Pillowcases! They’ve been flying off the shelves since their recent launch over on our online shop, and work wonders with the nighttime health of the skin and hair. And just because they’ve proved so surprisingly popular, we’ve dreamt up a dream team to accompany their brilliant traits, releasing our Luxury Pillowcases as a set; partnered with matching Scrunchie and Satin Sleep Mask!
So next time you’re settling down to sleep, keep in mind of what nighttime position you’re adopting, and how exactly your pillow is supporting the position of your neck and spine. And double check your pillowcase too, as no one wants to wake up to frazzled hair, and skin akin to a battlefield.