Heatwave: What to wear to bed to keep cool in hot weather


The recent heatwave has had people struggling to sleep (Picture: Getty Images via iStockphoto)

As Jason Derulo once sang, ‘it’s too hot to sleep’.

It seems that no matter what position we put ourselves in, no matter how many times we flip our pillows, or kick off our duvets – it’s sometimes the heatwave stops you from drifting off.

Of course, it’s important to consider ways to cool down your home, but what you wear in bed could make a big difference too.

Whether you’re a nude sleeper, or don’t feel comfortable without a matching button-up set of PJs, you might need to reassess your nightwear if you’re struggling to nod off in the heat.

Metro.co.uk spoke to the experts to find out what you should be sporting in your slumber.

What to wear to bed in a heatwave

Georgia Metcalfe, co-founder and designer of The French Bedroom Company, says that people who love pyjamas really need to think about the material.

Woman too hot to sleep

You might want to rethink your nightwear (Picture: Getty)

Just like when you’re choosing workout gear, the material of your clothes can have a big impact on how hot you get, and how you deal with sweat. And this is crucial while you’re sleeping.

‘Try a loose cotton or silk set that will allow your skin to breath and prevent over heating when tucked up in bed,’ Georgia explained to Metro.co.uk.

‘Anything too tight on your skin – whether that’s pyjamas or bed sheets – will create a warm layer between the fibres and your epidermis, increasing sweat production and aggravating skin conditions such as eczema – ultimately making you more uncomfortable.’

Sharing a bed with a partner during a heatwave can be a nightmare (Picture: Getty)

Nectar Sleep expert, Patrick Ross, agrees with this, and highly recommends investing in some light cotton pyjamas.

‘They will allow your skin to breathe and keep you cool throughout the night,’ Patrick told Metro.co.uk.

‘Often, cheaper materials can make you sweat even more throughout the night, but cotton allows your skin to release the sweat that would otherwise be pooling on your skin.’

Should you sleep naked in a heatwave?

But what about the naked debate?

When you’re heading to bed and your bedroom feels like a furnace, your first instinct is probably to strip down to nothing. Georgia says this can be a good idea.

‘Just a fifth of people sleep naked (23%), yet it is one of the best ways to improve sleep quality, especially when it’s warm,’ she explained.

‘Sleeping without clothes helps regulate body temperature, keeping you cool and more comfortable.’

Patrick agrees: ‘Sleeping naked is another good option to optimise your sleep, as it lowers your skin temperature. This will avoid you waking up in the night and be less disruptive to your REM sleep cycle which is key for learning, memory and mood regulation.’

However, some experts argue that sleeping naked can actually make you more sweaty and uncomfortable during the night.

The argument is that when you are naked and start sweating, sweat collects on your body and stays there – making you feel warmer.

Pure cotton against your skin can help to remove the layer of sweat, in turn helping you stay a bit cooler.

But if you just can’t face the thought of putting on a T-shirt in this ferocious heat, good quality bedding can do the same job.

‘Cotton, linen or silk sheets will be more than comfortable for you when sleeping naked, the natural fibres will be gentle on your skin and provide that all important breathability,’ says Georgie.

‘If possible, couples should try to have one sheet for each of them as this will keep moisture away from each other.’

Top view of woman in pyjamas sleeping in bed

Wearing the right type of pyjama material could cool you down (Credit: Getty Images)

Tips to sleep during a heatwave

Other than choosing the perfect bedtime attire, Patrick has shared some more clever hacks to help you sleep in the heat:

Chill out

Put your sheets or pillowcase in the freezer just before you go to sleep.

Make sure you zip it up in a sealed plastic bag beforehand so it doesn’t get wet from the ice and then pop it in for around five minutes.

This is a quick trick to ensure your body temperature is low at the time you hit the sheets and will help you get to sleep quicker when the night air is muggy.

Rinse your wrists

Running cold water over your hands, wrists, and feet can lead to a cooler body temperature. This is another temporary solution, but often a temporary fix is all you need to get your sleep started.

This is a healthy, easy way to alter your body just enough so that you can truly enjoy the start of your sleep. Often that’s enough to keep you going for the evening as your core temperature drops when you’re asleep.

Rinse your hands to keep cool (Picture: Getty)

Get the right mattress

One of the primary factors towards a good night’s sleep is the mattress you lay on.

When we sleep on it every single night, not only does it need to be comfortable and at a good level of firmness, it should be breathable.

DIY ice pack

It might be normal to sleep with a hot water bottle at the foot of your bed in the winter months but why not make the summer version?

Put some rice in a sock and tie it up tightly and pop it in the freezer all day. At night, put it at the foot of your bed and it will keep you feeling cool and refreshed throughout the night. It’s also free, reusable, and eco-friendly.


MORE :
How to keep your home cool in a heatwave


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