According to the United States National Institutes of Health, “Sleep plays a vital role in good health and well-being throughout your life. Getting enough quality sleep at the right times can help protect your mental health, physical health, quality of life, and safety.”
One way to ease into a good night’s sleep is to outfit your bedroom with the right sleep accoutrements, starting with your pillow, says Sara Lesieur, the owner/operator of Bedside Manor on Market Street in Camana Bay. “The right pillow is a must for a good night’s sleep,” she says, emphasising that you should choose a pillow based on your particular sleep style.
For example, people who sleep on their stomach would rarely choose or benefit from a full or firm pillow, she says. “It would throw their neck alignment out and they would find it harder to breathe with too much pillow in their face. If you are a side sleeper you would want support that you feel all the way from your shoulders up.”
Just as important in a pillow is its filling. Of course, you can’t beat the luxury and comfort of a down-filled pillow, and the down pillows at Bedside Manor have a very small amount of feather in them. The lower the amount of feather in them, the better, Sara says. “The benefit is not only a lower allergic reaction, but the feel of down is much softer than feathers.”
For those who are allergic to down, Sara suggests alternatives. Bedside Manor’s down alternative pillows are made by the same company that makes the down pillows. “This is great as they recognise that down is not for everybody, plus the beauty of buying non-down pillows from a supplier that manufactures down pillows is that they are very concerned with the feel and are meticulous in making sure it is replicated properly.”
The sheets and pillowcases you sleep on can also affect how you sleep, Sara says, and a higher thread count isn’t necessarily better. A very high thread count can actually be hotter than a mid-range to lower thread count because it weighs more, which is important in a climate like the Cayman Islands. “The key is the fabric that you are counting those threads from,” she says. “We always recommend a cotton sheet and start eliminating things that people do or don’t like.”
Sara stresses the importance of individual preferences when it comes to bedding, noting that some people prefer sheets made of cotton, while for others, bamboo or Tencel is the material of choice.
In addition to sheets – and despite the Cayman Islands’ warm climate – Bedside Manor sells quite a few duvets and comforters. “I know its seems like an oxymoron, but everything we do is a tropical weight,” Sara says. “We don’t even enter into a TOG rating, which is the measure of thermal resistance that most people look for in colder climates.” A lot of customers, Sara says, sleep in air-conditioned rooms, and are from colder climates, so more substantial bedding is what they know and prefer. “And of course there are all those people who love to just get into bed and under something soft and cozy.”
Still, Sara says, more bedding is not necessarily better — she stresses heeding your own personal style to enhance your sleep experience. “Bedding is all about the way you sleep, which varies for everyone. We can sell you 101 things for your bed, but if you’re not going to sleep comfortably, then there is no point.”
The same can be said for colour preferences for your linens. As for Sara’s preferences, “I love white, particularly in this climate,” she says. “It’s fresh, inviting and makes for a great serene environment which, let’s face it, is what your bedroom should be.”