Ahhhhh, the summer – what's not to like about BBQs, terrace drinks and the chance to wear our favourite sundresses and strappy sandals for days on end? Well, it's all fun and games until we try to settle down for a good night's sleep. Suddenly we're a hot sweaty mess, tossing and turning under the sheets as we desperately try to cool down and catch some rest. But don't worry, there are a few tricks you can employ in order to lower the temperature and sleep soundly. Here are 17 tips for sleeping when it's hot.
SHOP: 19 of the best mattresses to buy right now for an amazing night's sleep
MORE: The best cooling products for summer: From cooling bedding to refreshing facial sprays
COOL DOWN: We’ve found all of the best air conditioning units on Amazon
1. Choose the right fabrics
When the mercury's rising, it's tempting to just strip off entirely. But it's actually better to wear thin cotton pyjamas that let the skin breathe and soak up excess sweat. Similarly, make sure your bedsheets are made out of cotton, rather than manmade fabrics such as nylon.
Pure cotton cool comfort™ shortie set, £25, M&S
SEE MORE: Summer bedding: The best cooling bedsheets, pillows & mattress toppers you'll love if you're too hot at night
2. Use water spray
Giving your bedsheets a light spray – not a soak – will help keep you cool throughout the night. You can also spray your curtains to create a light breeze that will float around your room. Another trick is to keep an empty perfume or mini spray bottle filled with chilled water by your bed, to dot on your neck and wrists when you overheat.
Misting spray bottles, £4.99, Amazon
READ: 21 best things to help you sleep: The tips, tricks & products you need to try
3. Chill your sheets
Yes, you can freeze your sheets! Pop them in a plastic bag then in the freezer for a few minutes to get them icy cool.
4. Keep your pillows cool
Invest in a pair of cooling gel inserts for your pillows! Simple and easy to use, they can even help with migraines, stress, and tension headaches as well as flu and fever. Effectively, the cooling gel pillow absorbs and dissipates heat away from the head and neck throughout the night, so you can rest easy.
KEPLIN 2X Cooling Gel Pillows (large), £9.90, Amazon
Or better yet, try a Kally Cooling pillow! Filled with cooling foam core and high quality hollowfibre, the built-in air-vent system keeps you perfectly cool regardless of your sleeping position.
Kally Cooling Pillow, £39.99, Kally Sleep
5. Close the curtains during the day
It may be tempting to throw open your curtains all day long to let air in, but this may actually cause your home to heat up more. Try using thin white cotton blinds and curtains, and keep them closed throughout the day.
Heat reflective window film, £22.99, Amazon
MORE: Top tips to help your baby sleep well and keep cool in hot weather
6. Open windows
Depending on where you live this isn't always achievable – especially if you're near a street with noisy traffic – however, if you can get away with it, letting in the cool evening air can make a huge difference.
7. Use air conditioning or a fan
If you can put up with the whirring sound of the machine, these can be great to get that much-needed cool breeze circulating. However, if you live in a motor home, the National Sleep Foundation recommends you avoid air-conditioning as this can be dangerous in a vehicle that isn't moving because it can cause a build-up of carbon monoxide.
16-inch Pedastal Fan, £30, John Lewis
8. Stay hydrated
You should do your best to keep as hydrated as possible over the summer anyway, but keeping an ice-cold glass of water close to your bed can keep you refreshed and help bring your core temperature down. This Chilly's bottle keeps drinks cool for up to 24 hours.
Chilly's bottle, £22, John Lewis
9. Invest in a cooling mattress topper
Choose a mattress topper that will transform your existing mattress. Temperature-regulating and sweat-wicking, this topper features 'open-cell technology' with tiny gel capsules that release your body heat to keep you cool as you sleep.
Panda London Memory foam bamboo mattress topper, £99, Kally Sleep
10. Turn off all plug sockets
Plug sockets and electronic devices leak energy into the air, so turning them off will help lower your room's temperature as well as saving you a bit of cash.
11. Sleep downstairs
Hot air rises, so if your bedroom is on the top floor then it's worth sleeping downstairs if you have space. You could also try sleeping as close to the floor as possible by taking your mattress off the bed or sleeping on a futon.
12. Sleep alone
If you share a bed with a partner, then consider (temporarily) saying goodbye – two bodies means twice the heat. To prevent arguments over who gets the bed and who will be confined to the sofa, try taking it in turns.
If in doubt, get pampering. It's called 'self-care' for a reason, and applying a gorgeous cooling face mask is the perfect solution for the heatwave. Currently, our favourite is the ULTRA SMART Pro-Collagen Aqua Infusion Mask by Elemis. This moisture mask delivers layers of hydration to help protect the skin’s moisture barrier, for a complexion that looks smoother and firmer.
ULTRA SMART Pro-Collagen Aqua Infusion Mask, £125, Elemis
14. Try a face mist
Trust us - the Omorovicza Hungary Mist is a joy to be had on a hot summer's night - it's a cult classic for a reason. A quick spritz of this neroli and rose-scented facial mist refreshes the skin and immediately lifts your spirits! Purifying and hydrating, it was inspired by the Queen of Hungary Water, the world’s first recorded perfume, formulated for Queen Elizabeth of Hungary in the 14th century. Perfect as a post-cleanse toner to refresh the skin before bed.
Omorovicza Hungary Mist, £62, Omorovicza
15. Rinse your wrists
Running your wrists under the cold water tap for a couple of minutes can help reduce the temperature of the blood running through your veins. This can then slightly lower the temperature of the rest of your body, making sleep easier.
16. Make a 'cold water bottle'
Yes, it works the other way round – fill up your hot water bottles with ice and chilled water and place it on your pulse points, such as the neck, wrists, knees and ankles, or pop it in the freezer and bring it to bed with you.
CASSANDRA hot water bottle, £4.49, Amazon
SHOP: Best discounted summer essentials: Save on fans, paddling pools, beach towels & more
17. Stay still
Ultimately, don't panic if you can't sleep and definitely don't toss and turn because that'll just make you feel hotter.
18. Take a hot bath
No, we're not crazy. This can actually help you cool down before bed because if you take a hot bath close to bedtime, your body temperature will decrease after you leave the bath as your body adapts to the cooler environment.
19. Ditch the booze
Stop drinking alcohol at least four hours before your bedtime, according to Mattress Next Day. Whilst drinking a glass of wine or a bottle of beer is customary for most during a heatwave, it’s important to stop drinking at the right time so your sleep isn’t disrupted. Whilst alcohol can make you fall asleep due to its sedative properties and, therefore, allow you to fall asleep quickly, what’s not common knowledge is that your sleep quality is considerably lower after consuming alcohol. You won’t feel recharged the following morning and will suffer from excessive sleepiness throughout the day. So, if you do decide to drink (which is fair!), make sure to stop drinking at least four hours before your bedtime so it’s mostly worn off by the time you drift off.
HELLO!'s selection is editorial and independently chosen – we only feature items our editors love and approve of. HELLO! may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. To find out more visit our FAQ page.