Sweet dreams? What’s that? Despite us all knowing how important it is to get our 8 hours every night, most of us do not get enough sleep. According to the sleep council, 40% of people suffer from sleep issues, so you’re not alone. However, as we head into the winter months alongside Lockdown 2 anxiety the more sleep we get, the better our mental and physical health. As we all know, pyjamas come in different styles and materials but how much do they really impact our sleep patterns? 

Pyjamas or no pyjamas? 

To wear them, or not to wear them. What you wear to bed affects how hot or cold you are and maintaining the optimal temperature for sleeping (around 20C) is essential for a good nights rest (Guardian).

survey of 1,200 adults revealed that 37% wear PJs, 23% prefer just underwear and 19% go for shorts and T-shirts. As well as a third saying they liked to sleep naked. However, less common options were also revealed: 1.3% sleep in a tracksuit, 0.8% wear a hoodie, and 2.5% opt for an onesie. I don’t know about you but, those sound a little too hot for me even with the temperature dropping. 

Getting your shut-eye naked may keep you cool but for winter, wearing pyjamas seems the better option. Perhaps compromise for a looser fitting set that moves freely with you.

What material is best? 

Research suggests that fabric is the key to achieving optimal temperatures to help you get a good sleep.  One study found that wool is an efficient insulator that can influence skin warming and promote sleep onset and sleep quality at lower temperatures (Shin- Chow et al, 2016). 

Also, the type of material you wear to bed may be crucial in the amount of time it takes you to nod off. One study explained that wearing wool pyjamas instead of cotton gives up to 15 minutes’ extra sleep (Telegraph). Australian researchers found that students in their 20s fell asleep four minutes faster on average when wearing pyjamas made from merino wool rather than cotton. Similarly, those aged 65 to 70 fell asleep after 12 minutes when wearing wool compared with 22 and 27 minutes for those wearing polyester or cotton. Therefore, it seems best to consider natural fibre wool as the material to go for this winter. 

‘Smart’ Pyjamas 

The worlds of fashion and science have collided once again with Trisha L. Andrew, PhD leading a team at the University of Massachusetts designing the “Phyjama,” as (American Chemical Society). These smart pyjamas use self-powered sensors to monitor heartbeat, breathing and sleep posture, all contributing factors that impact sleep. In the future, these Phyjamas could be used to give us tips for a better sleep based on our own bodies behaviour. 

So, although you can’t get your hands on any “Phyjama’s” yet, invest in a good set for the winter months to come. Luckily the Fashion is Psychology Team is on hand to provide you with top pyjama recommendations according to science.

Top 5 Pyjamas to buy now for the best sleep

RRP: Starting at £68.99

“A luxurious blend of merino wool and nature’s high tech fibre Tencel from eucalyptus provides you with featherlight, breathable warmth.”

RRP: £49.50 

“They’re made from cosy flannel cotton and have a drawstring waistband for a personalised fit.”

RRP: £40

Almond green knitted pyjamas, the perfect stylish set.

RRP: £49.99 

“This soft nightdress is made of high-quality organic merino wool. The itchy hairs of the wool fibres have been removed using a 16-hour enzyme treatment, making the dress feels nice and soft against your skin. The wool regulates your body temperature, keeping you comfortable so you can wear this nightdress all-year-round and get a good nights sleep.”

RRP: £15

“Get super-comfy this winter in this fleece pyjama set, complete with a seasonal penguin print.”

Author

Maisie is a passionate Psychology of Fashion undergraduate at London College of Fashion, she applies her analytical and inquisitive skills to fashion business with the aim to positively enhance wellbeing.

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