The Best Bedding Essentials for Your Sleep Style

Stomach sleeper? Hot and cold? A mover and a shaker? Here, discover the sheets, pillows, and other sleep accessories that will meet your specific needs.

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Composite of bedding essentials
Photo: Courtesy of Amazon, Brooklinen

Sleep is a universal humanizer: We all know we need it, and we feel so much better when we prioritize it—but it can also hard to come by. Whether you're tempted by one more (and then another) episode of your favorite show or distracted by the endless scroll of social media, chances are high that you're not getting enough shut-eye. In fact, 70 percent of adults in the United States report that they obtain insufficient sleep at least one night a month—and 11 percent report poor sleep every night.

One reason for not-so-stellar rest could depend on your personal sleeping preferences and needs. While your partner may prefer to sleep on their side, you could be a stomach sleeper—and yet, you're using the same pillow. Or, if you run super hot, you may need a way to regulate your body temperature so you can stay cool (and asleep). To figure out how your bedding—from your sheets and pillow to a comforter and beyond—could be impacting your sleep, we turned to a professional.

"Some people use the same sheets, pillows, and comforters for too long without realizing that it could contribute to their sleep issues," says Peter Polo, MD, PhD, FCCP, FAASM, a sleep medicine specialist that is board-certified in pulmonary and sleep medicine and the sleep expert for Sleep Number. "Comfort and quality are critical when it comes to bedding. If you're experiencing discomfort or toss and turn in the night, it might be time to think about getting new bedding."

The Best Bedding Essentials For Your Sleep Style

Here, discover the best bedding essential—from sheets and comforters to pillows and more—that best suit your sleeping style.

For Hot Sleepers: SLUMBER CLOUD Essential Sheet Set

SLUMBER CLOUD Essential Sheet Set
Courtesy of Amazon

One of the most important factors for good sleep is a cool environment, says Dr. Polo. So, when you're running hot, your body is in overdrive to attempt to cool you down, preventing you from quickly falling asleep. Ideally, he says to keep the room temperature around 68 to 69 degrees. But if you're still sweaty, consider investing in bedding materials that can pull heat and moisture away from the bed and help keep the surface cooler, making the sleeper (that's you!) more comfortable throughout the night. "Look for bedding that has cooling fabric or even temperature-balancing beds that can warm you as you fall asleep and provide cooling to help you stay asleep," Dr. Polo says.

These sheets use NASA's Outlast technology to absorb and store heat, so you remain at your ideal temperature through every sleep cycles. They are soft to the touch while still feeling cozy and come in various colors to match your aesthetic.

For Back Sleepers: ComfiLife Lumbar Support Pillow

ComfiLife Lumbar Support Pillow
Courtesy of Amazon

Back sleepers may need extra support to ensure proper alignment and reduce stress on the lower back area, says Dr. Polo. "Although comfort is subjective to the sleeper, back sleepers should strive for a pillow that aligns their neck and spine," he says. Consider this lumbar support pillow that you can lay underneath your lower back for additional support and enhanced comfort. While it might take a few nights to get used to, it could prevent fewer aches and pains when you wake up in the morning.

For Stomach Sleepers: Bluewave Bedding Ultra Slim Gel Memory Foam Pillow

Bluewave Bedding Ultra Slim Gel Memory Foam Pillow
Courtesy of Amazon

According to Dr. Polo, stomach sleeping is the least common sleep position. "While it can reduce snoring, it might be at the risk of neck and back complaints," he says. "Neck, back, or shoulder pain are frequent complaints in individuals who sleep on their stomach. On your stomach, your chest sinks deeper into the mattress because of its weight, causing your back to arch, resulting in the improper alignment of the neck and spine."

So, what can help you feel more at ease, but also allow you to fall into dreamland in your preferred position? A thin, yet supportive pillow like this gel memory foam option from Bluewave. This reduces the strain of the angle imposed by the neck. Also, choosing a firm mattress can do wonders, Dr. Polo says.

For Side Sleepers: Luna Memory Foam Knee Pillow

Luna Memory Foam Knee Pillow
Courtesy of Amazon

While side sleeping is the most common sleep position, studies have shown that this preference can create pressure points on your hips and shoulders, says Dr. Polo. Of course, this can result in discomfort over an extended period. "Side sleepers can benefit from a curved pillow that contours for enhanced comfort and support. Sleeping with a pillow between your legs can also help keep your spine in alignment while sleeping," he says.

This highly-rated and inexpensive pillow is made of memory foam, so it's both soft and sturdy; tuck it between your legs while you sleep. You can move it slightly above or under your knee, depending on what feels best to you.

For Light Sleepers: Brooklinen Mulberry Eye Mask

Brooklinen Mulberry Eye Mask
Courtesy of Brooklinen

If you are regularly jolted awake by soft sounds or slivers of light, you're likely envious of those who can fall asleep seemingly anywhere. Though our ability to fall and stay asleep can change throughout our lives, light sleepers generally awaken to external disturbances more quickly than others throughout the night, Dr. Polo says. The first step is to figure out what is impacting your rest—and if it's sensitivity to light, a luxurious eye mask, like this option from Brooklinen, will help. Made of silk, it's cozy to wear (without being too tight)—and its added cushion ensures car lights won't disturb your slumber.

For Deep Sleepers: Buffy Cloud Comforter

Buffy Cloud Comforter
Courtesy of Amazon

Deep sleepers experience more restorative rest than light sleepers, probably because they completely cycle through all sleep stages, says Dr. Polo. If you fall into this category, you might not need to change anything, but if you want some added coziness, consider replacing your current bed covering with Buffy's appropriately-named "cloud" comforter. It's plush, temperature-regulating, lightweight, and highly-rated online.

For Restless Sleepers: Baloo Weighted Blanket

Baloo Weighted Blanket
Courtesy of Amazon

As Dr. Polo reminds us, having proper bedding is vital to our sleep—and when we don't have good bedding, it can cause us to toss and turn throughout the night. "As we know, a restless night often bleeds into our lives during the day, and if our sleep schedule is thrown off, we feel off," he says. "So, investing in proper bedding that keeps you comfortable is important."

If you are feeling restless or going through a period of heightened anxiety and stress, a weighted blanket, like this one from Baloo, is almost like falling asleep while being cuddled (just without the body heat!). It will help to lower your heart rate, make you feel secure and safe, and hopefully, cut back on your midnight tango.

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