31 Things That’ll Help Solve Your Small(ish) Sleep Problems

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These dim 50–80% of the light, so the rest of the day you still know that everything’s working the way it’s supposed to! Although if you prefer, you can double ’em to block even more light, or go for the ~blackout edition~. They’re completely removable and leave no residue behind, too!

Promising review: “This is the best thing you never knew you needed. I own a digital clock with the numbers displayed in red LED light, and every night I’ve blocked the light with a cover so it doesn’t shine in my eyes as I sleep. Silly I know, but I like my room pitch black and cave-like. On a whim I bought this product. OH MY GOD! Game changer!! For the first night EVER I didn’t have to cover the clock display before I went to bed!! I had no idea how big a difference this little dimmer could make, but I’m more than pleased with the result. I can still see the time display just fine, but now my room is a happy cave! Some commenters argue you could get the same effect using electrical tape but this product is easy to remove and doesn’t leave a sticky residue at all, which can’t be said for most tapes. I did notice a slight lag in response when I covered my TV LED sensor, so if you’re trying to block something that actually senses inputs I would maybe not suggest this. Other than that, excellent product!” —Amazon Customer

Get a sheet of over 100 stickers in different shapes and sizes on Amazon for $5.69. If you have a big clock face you’d like to dim, also check out a similar product that you cut to size, $8.99 for two six by three inch–sheets.

It comes with two power cords, one that plugs into a regular wall and another that plugs into your car, making it easy to use if you’re in a vehicle a bunch, too.

Promising review: “I purchased my first Zyllion on 5/24/2014. My little friend died tonight, 10/13/2018. This wonderful little gadget came to my aid multiple times a day, and never complained. I sat on it, dropped it, lay across it — virtually lived on that thing. It’s been my go-to pal when I was sore from surgery, from work, from a long day in the yard. I have severe arthritis, bursitis, plantar fasciitis, frozen shoulder, joint pain, tight calves, and a replaced hip and shoulder. This modest little piece of equipment is phenomenal for loosening tight muscles and helping relieve pain. These guys are top notch, reliable little beasts.” —white noise machine

In general, you want to go for a weight that’s about 10% of your body weight plus one.

Promising review: “Before I received this weighted blanket, according to my Fitbit, I was averaging about four and a half hours of sleep per night due to pain. My first night with this blanket and I slept over seven hours!! Same for my second night. This is so comfortable and comforting. I’m recommending this to everyone I know!” —Jamie Eubanks

Get it on Amazon for $49.90+ (10 weights/sizes available between five and 25 pounds; five colors/styles).

I personally have one of these and have slept in it a bunch; I didn’t have much trouble going to sleep without it, but it definitely helps me fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer! Yes, it’s basically a stretchy, human-size pillowcase, but it really does feel like a gentle cuddle or hug all over, all night long. Oh and it’s machine washable, which is key for anything I sometimes use for 56+ hours every week.

Mal Mower, another writer here at BuzzFeed, also uses one and swears by it! Here’s what she had to say in her Hatch Sleep Pod review:

“I recently replaced my weighted blanket with a Sleep Pod and I am never going back. I appreciated the comfort that I got from a weighted blanket, but it was so hot I wasn’t able to last under it for long. It was also so heavy I couldn’t take it with me anywhere. This design solves those problems. The fabric is breathable and so lightweight I can comfortably use it in the summer and I can throw it in my tote bag on vacations. I feel calm and comforted every time I get in. I’ve used it while napping, while trying to calm down before going to bed at night, and while sitting on the sofa/needing some extra stress relief when binge-watching Chernobyl got too stressful. I can’t rave enough about this thing, but I’ll certainly keep trying!”

Of course, please go see your doctor if you have persistent/chronic back, knee, hip, or arthritis pain!

Promising review: “I am a side sleeper that has lower back pain in the morning. I picked this shape because my chiropractor recommended a pillow shaped like an hour glass to help my back. I have been using the pillow for over a week and my lower back feels much better in the morning. The strap keeps the pillow attached without having to be adjusted when I turn over.” —CH

Promising review: “LOVE! Can’t believe how long I went without this pillow case. Always heard silk cases were better for your skin and hair. It definitely helps tame my hair a bit, but the main thing I love is how comfortable the case is and how it keeps me cool during the night.” —Maylynne T.

It’s made from a tightly woven microfiber with a ~mean pore size~ of two microns, which means no allergens can escape, even if you put it on an old pillow. It also doesn’t hold onto surface allergens, has a lifetime warranty, and is machine washable.

Promising review: “I went to an allergist who identified my most problematic allergen as dust mites, and recommended the Mission:Allergy products. I encased my mattress and pillows with their products, started washing sheets and all blankets weekly with hot water, and vacuum my bedroom, including under the bed, at least once a week. My allergy symptoms are substantially reduced and I can now breathe through my nose all night… and sleep! These bedding covers are not a miracle cure for all allergies. I would recommend testing to see if dust mites are actually a problem for you before investing the $$. If you’re allergic to pollen this won’t help. And I’m guessing that washing ALL bedding in hot water and regular vacuuming have also contributed to the improvement I’ve experienced.” —Donna McMaster

Get one on Amazon for $20.95+ (available in six sizes; also see all of the Mission: Allergy products on Amazon for mattress encasings, comforters, and pillows).

Promising review: “Normally I don’t write reviews, but I felt I had to say that this is the most comfortable eyemask I have ever worn. It’s extremely soft to the touch. It feels so good on the face and completely blocks out any light. I don’t even notice the two adjustable head straps because they are also so comfortable. I normally work 12 hour night shifts so I’m sleeping through the day. I always had issues with constantly waking up even with black out curtains because the sunlight was still getting around them, but since I’ve started wearing the mask, I have had no disrupted sleep, and I am dead to the world during the day with this on.” —Heather

They also help block some noise and can be an extra little bit of insulation in the summer or winter.

Promising review: “Best blackout curtains ever for the price. I’ve shopped all over and these are truly what they are advertised. I didn’t think I would need blackouts, but I work nights and sleep till noon and these are absolutely perfect. The color is a rich navy which are difficult to find in store. Trust me when I say, I went everywhere: Lowes, Home Depot & Home Goods, Tuesday morning, Ross, TJ Maxx, Walmart, Target. No place had them in this color for this price. I love, love, love, Amazon Prime because I wasn’t sure if these were going to work out, but they are above and beyond what I expected.” —Josie Holdridge

It has ten fan sound options, ten ambient noise options, and two ocean sounds, and is small and compact.

Promising review: “This is so freaking great. I’ve been using white noise machines for years and years but ended up finding this through BuzzFeed. My old machine had looping audio and I hated it, so the fact that this is non-looping is everything. It’s also very sleek and modern. I live in downtown Boston with construction sites literally boxing me in my building with noise nearly 24/7 between that and cops/fire trucks. This knocks out the noise and allows me to sleep or nap at any time of day without hearing anything.” —ML

You can also pull it down over your eyes to use as a sleep mask. It’s lined with a soft mesh so you stay warm but don’t get too hot. Plus when it comes time to wash the band (in the machine, naturally) you can take the headphones out, easily.

Promising review: “I’ve never slept better. I recently moved to my first apartment and was miserable because I’m near the garbage dump. The ground keeper compresses the trash that has a siren sound every morning 5:30–7 am waking me up. As soon as I’m ready to fall back to sleep, I’m disturbed by cars with loud engines because I’m also on the main street. It’s loud but these headphones have really blocked all the noise out. I also pull mine over my eyes so light doesn’t disturb my sleep. I highly recommend if you’re struggling with sleeping!” —micah

The biggest downside here: you may not be able to hear your alarm in the morning. But if you’re not falling asleep or sleeping well because of other sounds anyway, these still could be worth a try.

Promising review: “I purchased these ear plugs because I suffer from something called annoying neighbors syndrome. I would liken the sounds coming from below and across from my apartment to that of an auto shop or a construction site. The contour capabilities of these ear plugs make them incredibly comfortable to wear. After inserting the ear plugs and allowing them to adjust, silence fell over my bedroom. I was able to sleep free from the obnoxious noises that surround my apartment. My only complaint is I missed my alarm by an hour and a half while the ear plugs blocked every bit of noise. These will be the only ear plugs I wear from now on. And I’m considering a louder alarm.” —Claire

Get them on Amazon: 10 pair for $2.98, 50 pair for $11.99, or 70 pair for $12.88.

Michelle No, a contributor here at BuzzFeed, also loves these — read her full Flents ear plugs review for more.

Promising review: “They’re great. I mean, what do you say about pillow cases? They hide the drool and head grease stains on my pillows perfectly. The fabric is comfortable to touch, and the stitching and construction were unremarkable, which means they got the job done as expected.” —D. Michael McIntyre

Get a set of two cases on Amazon for $7.99+ (available in sizes standard and King, and in 24 colors/patterns).

Promising review: “Love this spray! I spray it on my pillow and sheets before I lay down and it has such a light but great scent! Calms and soothes me so I can fall asleep.” —CandeceV

As all bedding should be, it’s completely machine washable, and like all duvets ought, it has loops so you can tie on your favorite duvet cover.

Promising review: “I love that it’s reversible. It’s nice and thick and the color is perfect. I have a cat and he sheds sometimes and the fur just wipes right off this comforter. I’ve washed this half a dozen times (because I’m spill-prone) and it’s holding up perfectly. I would definitely recommend, it’s a great price for something with such good durability and thickness.” —TFBenitez

The shorts have an elastic waist with a drawstring, so you can get your perfect preferred fit; the top is (naturally) buttons. The polka-dot styles are 100% cotton, while the solids are 95% cotton and 5% spandex. They’re machine wash cold and tumble dry low (although they may shrink a little because they’re cotton), and the company recommends sizing down if you’re between sizes.

Promising reviews: “I’m so happy with these pajamas! 🙂 The fabric is not see through, construction is excellent, and shorts are just the right length. I considered less-expensive versions of pajamas in this style from other sellers but decided to spend ten or so more dollars to avoid the risk of having to return poor quality or ill-fitting pajamas, and am so glad I did. These are worth every penny!” —Louisek

“Love these PJ’s mainly because they are cotton. You stay cool and comfortable while asleep and while lounging around. I especially like the top because you can’t see through it while going without a bra.” —Michelle C.

Get them from Amazon for $36.99+ (available in sizes S–XL and six colors/patterns) — or with pants instead of shorts for $44.99+ (available in sizes XS–1X and15 colors/patterns).

To apply it, you wash your nose with soap and water, dry it, then put the strip on and hold for thirty seconds. Also, if you’re snoring because you have sleep apnea, you probably want to consult your doctor, first!

Promising review: “I use a nose strip every night so I will sleep better. Have done for years. I like this brand because it has 50 count as opposed to 26 or 30 in most other brands, i.e. Breathe Right (which is the most expensive brand on the market). They work well, I’d say even better than Breathe Right. The adhesive is affective but doesn’t rip your skin off in the morning when you remove it. (Hint: You have to wipe your nose with alcohol before you put any nose strip on…noses are oily.)” —Ann

Basically, it takes a few questions that psychology knows help people out, and has you run through those each and every day, complete with an inspirational quote. Every morning, there’s a space to jot down three things you’re grateful for, three things that will “make today great”, and a ~positive affirmation~ (which could simply be what one BuzzFeeder who reviewed the Five-Minute Journal called a “one-sentence pep talk”). At night, there are lines to write down three amazing things from the day, plus two things that would have made the day better. It may not be a true replacement for therapy, but it’s a great tool.

Promising review: “The journal is a simple yet effective way to carve out time to begin and end your day on a high note. You are encouraged to write in your journal first thing when you wake up and I always find myself excited to start my day and begin to follow through with my intentions. At night, you can jot down three amazing things that happened that day, and a quick question about how you could have made today even better allows you to write out the one thing that is racing through your mind and I found that it helps me sleep better as I’m not dwelling on it all night. A few minutes for an entire day of positivity and gratitude!” —Amazon Customer

A single workbook likely won’t completely make your anxiety go away, but it could be a start! Some reviewers say they use it along with the help of a therapist who uses CBT; FWIW, CBT with a therapist seriously helped me with my own anxiety. (If you’re interested in learning more, check out BuzzFeed’s guide to online therapy, tips to find a therapist, and guide to starting therapy).

Promising reviews: “I bought this workbook to help with my insomnia. After working through the book, I still have insomnia but I no longer have anxiety during the night because of my insomnia, to add to my insomnia. It’s a good workbook. I recommend it.” —Deb / Colorado

“It breaks anxiety down into specific cases and helps you deal with your particular panic attack. Even just reading the book is therapeutic. The tone is so calming, and I always feel better after reading a chapter. When you feel anxious, just go down the table of contents until you find the chapter that applies to your particular situation, even if you have read that chapter 100 times. It will help over and over again.” —MagicMom

BTW, some Amazon reviewers report their gummies arriving melted, so if you live somewhere hot, consider finding these at a local store, instead.

Promising review: “I’ve tried other sleep products like the sleep drinks and other gummies but I keep coming back for these! They’ve worked the best out of any of the others I’ve tried! I fall asleep fast and stay asleep for the whole night. I also wake up feeling great! No hangover feeling at all!” —Jaime Arnold

Get a bag of 60 gummies from Amazon for $16.99 or a jar of 110 for $27.79.

Promising review: “This tea works exactly as advertised. Sometimes I will lie in bed for hours because I can’t shut my brain off enough to fall asleep. When I drink a cup of this before bed, I fall asleep and stay asleep all through the night! Steep the tea as directed for the best results: for 10–15 minutes, in a cup covered to keep the steam from escaping. This will give you the most of the valerian root goodness! I feel like it takes me a full 30–60 minutes after drinking this tea for me to fall asleep, so give yourself time to steep the tea and drink it. Valerian root can be bitter, but this tea is blended with other herbs to make the taste is quite pleasant. The results are worth every penny.” —The Degamos

According to the National Sleep Foundation, the blue light that comes from all kinds of screens (TV, your phone, your computer, etc) delays your circadian rhythm and causes your body to produce less melatonin, an important sleep hormone, which makes it harder to fall asleep or stay asleep. While the best solution is to stay away from screens entirely for a few hours before bed, if you know that’s not going to happen, these just might help!

Promising review: “My sleep has significantly improved since snagging these glasses. I use night-shift on my phone but I’m on the computer all day. These are a little yellow-ish to the eye, but it makes the computer even more tolerable.” —Jessica

It has a machine-washable 100% cotton cover, so it can wash and dry along with your sheets.

Promising review: “This pillow saved me! I was not sleeping AT ALL. Tossing, turning couldn’t get comfortable. I am not pregnant, I just needed additional support for my back which this provides and has helped ease hip and leg aches. It also keeps me in one spot so I don’t wake myself up constantly moving around, but allows me to easily maneuver if I need to then fall right back to sleep. I throw the pillow itself in the dryer every other time I wash the cover and flip it over often sleeping on both sides.” —Karen

Plus they give you a 100-night sleep trial, so if you don’t love it, you can return it for a full refund.

Promising review: “I have been using this pillow for almost a year and no other pillow is good enough now. It does have a faint odd smell at first but that goes away after a few uses. After some adjusting with the amount of foam I found my perfect comfort level and since then we’ve lived happily ever after. I used to just buy the cheap pillows from the store but now that I’ve owned this pillow for a year and have experienced the comfort and quality I’ve realized it is beyond worth the money. My boyfriend loves it too, he stole it from me for about a week and I could tell a major difference in my quality of sleep so I took it back from him and well, he bought one of his own!” —joyousjess

Feel like doing more pillow shopping? Check out the recommendations for Best Pillows from BuzzFeed Reviews!

Just because you’re a little lazy (or have trouble waking up to a regular alarm) doesn’t necessarily mean you need the loudest alarm on the planet — if gimmicky, loud, fight-or-flight alarms have failed you in the past, maybe something chill is what you’ve needed all along. If you’re considering getting the more expensive version, definitely read this Amazon review, by someone who’s owned it for five full years with no problems!

Promising review “Oh my goodness! I bought this for my husband to replace an old school super annoying nuclear-level alarm clock which he would repeatedly snooze six or seven times. THIS IS THE BEST THING I HAVE EVER GIVEN AS A GIFT. I didn’t know my mornings could begin so peacefully! I am GENTLY woken by the light before it reaches it’s brightest setting, and then the chirping birds sounds are so real. I thought they were singing outside my window at first! Now I don’t mind when my husband hits the snooze, ’cause those birds are lovely! Makes dragging myself out of bed great!” —Amazon Customer

Get one with 4.0/5 stars on Amazon (and a sunset feature to help you fall asleep, as well as the gradual wake-up sunrise, and several alarm sound options like the birds) for $85.33. Or get one with 4.2/5 stars (but only the sunrise feature, no sunset, and only a “beep” alarm sound) for $49.95.

Promising review: “I LOVE THIS LIGHT!!! It’s fairly sturdy, especially for the price, and the variable light colors are THE BEST!! Being able to use yellow light at night to help with getting to sleep while I’m reading, then change to blue light during the day with just a couple taps, is awesome. The variable light level control is super easy and convenient, and there are a ton of ways to reposition the light to meet your needs. As someone who prefers clean lines/contemporary design, I also love how it looks on my nightstand.” —Shauna B.

Granted, there’s not too much science behind which fabric keeps ya coolest, but fibers like linen and cotton are generally more breathable than ones like polyester. That means they let your sweat evaporate (the way it’s supposed to!), which cools you down. I have a set of the pictured linen sheets, by Cultiver, and while I’m not a hot sleeper, I do often pull up an extra blanket to use with ’em because they definitely keep me cooler than other sheets I’ve used. Temperature aside, they’re very soft, and while I personally still love the crisp feeling of percale cotton sheets best, I still very much enjoy the cozy texture of linen, and have been sticking with these through the summer! Note that they *will* look wrinkled, but that’s the point: when you look at the bed with its softly rumpled sheets, it seems like just the place you want to snuggle down in for a good night’s sleep.

Promising review: “These linen sheets have a really lovely pattern of cream base with navy blue pin stripes woven in, and the pinstripes have some variation, kind of nubbly that looks nice. The sheets have a texture that I love; not perfectly smooth so it’s a bit more like a gentle massage on the skin when you get in bed! Also I’ve never had linen sheets before, and these are noticeably cooler in temperature than the poly/cotton blend sheets we had before.” —Shannon S.

Promising review: “This has transformed my blah mattress into something I love! I’ve been spoiled sleeping on a memory foam (king size) mattress for a few years now. I’m currently renting a temporary furnished apartment with a small average mattress, and I wasn’t sleeping well. I can already tell that this mattress topper will make a HUGE difference in my quality of sleep. It’s perfect, and definitely worth the price! I laid it out while I went out to dinner (two hours max) and it was completely poofed up to normal size by the time I got home. It’s seriously perfect, and better than I was expecting for the price.” —Katie

Get it on Amazon for $39.99+ (available in sizes twin–Cal king) — or read here about all the best mattress toppers.

It has 2 inches of memory foam and 10 inches of ventilated support foam, all CertiPur US certified.

Promising review: “I prefer something mildly firm since those ultra plush mattresses leave my body feeling sore. Many of the reviews on here say that the bed is firm but I really underestimated exactly how firm it would be. At first I was a bit disappointed with how solid it seemed but I can honestly say that I’ve slept so incredibly well the last couple of nights, better than I have in a while. So with that I’d say if you like those really soft plushy mattresses that your body sinks into, this isn’t it. BUT if you prefer a firm mattress and something with great support I say go for it!” —Angie

Get it from Amazon for $171.91+ (available in sizes twin–Cal king and three thicknesses); or if you prefer something on the softer side, check out the brand’s plush option for $139+ (available in the same size and thickness range).

If you want more options, also check out The Best Mattresses You Can Get At Wayfair and The Best Mattresses You Can Get On Amazon.

Promising review: “Looked for ‘heavy duty bed frame’ and that’s exactly what this is. The 2” recessed edges make it so it fits inside of the side rails. It took about 10 minutes to set up, no tool required and was quiet, not a squeak at night. We are newlyweds, so we have really put it to the squeak test and it’s quiet as be. Extremely happy with our purchase. These are probably going to go in all our rooms because I know it will be no problem to get years’ of use out of these.” —Ryan Hughes

It can be used on both incandescent and LED bulbs; it basically goes between the lamp’s plug and the wall, then has a switch on a cord with the dimmer.

Promising review: “Used this to tone down an outdoor light string I use in a camp kitchen and sitting area that has LED Edison and incandescent Edison bulbs… which are bright when cooking, dimmed when sitting and enjoying the time for aesthetics. The dimming really made the Edison filaments noticeable.No flickering and super easy install. No noticeable flicker in the LED’s spiral (the bulb with the spiral) at all. The dimmer is protected from the elements under a canopy.” —Fran

Source: https://www.buzzfeed.com/nataliebrown/solve-small-ish-sleep-problems

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