6 Ways Your Bedroom Decor Could Be Sabotaging Your Sleep

How to fix these common decor mistakes—and catch more Zs.

If you're tossing and turning all night long, have trouble falling asleep, or keep waking up earlier than you'd like, stress and screen time could be to blame—but your bedroom decor may also be playing a role. You might not consider how your choice of window treatments or the arrangement of furniture could influence your sleep, yet fixing some common decor mistakes may help you sleep more soundly. By cutting down on the clutter and mitigating light pollution, you can turn your bedroom into a sleep sanctuary. The first step to a better night's sleep: check if you're making any of the bedroom decorating mistakes, below.

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Leaving clutter on your nightstands.

If Marie Kondo taught us anything, it's that our cluttered homes are likely contributing to our stress. Yes, we're looking at you, nightstands piled high with books, papers, and charging cords. Even if you aren't consciously aware of it, the clutter surrounding your bed could be affecting your sleep.

To make your bedroom a serene space, start by clearing off the surfaces closest to your bed, such as bedside tables. Make space for a glass of water and consider relocating your phone farther away from your bed (more on that, below).

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Choosing the wrong window treatments.

If the streetlight outside your window is shining into your bedroom at night, it could be sabotaging your eight hours. According to a 2018 study by the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, adults over 60 who were exposed to more light pollution were more likely to take medication to help them sleep.

Another solution: simply invest in light-blocking curtains. Blackout shades or curtains with a blackout liner (or a combination of the two) will keep your bedroom dark all night long.

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Placing your phone (or iPad or laptop) next to your bed.

If you're stashing your phone charger dock right next to your bed, now's the time to relocate it. As studies have shown, the blue light screens emit can have a negative effect on sleep.

Moving your tech chargers to the other side of the room (or out of your bedroom entirely), can help you avoid looking at your phone before bed as well as stop those middle-of-the-night Instagram scrolling sessions.

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Picking the wrong paint color.

If you're having trouble falling asleep in your newly redecorated bedroom, that bright red paint may be to blame. Vibrant colors like red and purple add energy to a room. Instead, swipe on a soothing paint color, such as pale blue or moss green.

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Keeping a desk in your bedroom.

Sleep pros often recommend reserving your bedroom for just sleep and sex, so your brain will associate this room with sleep. If you currently have a desk in your bedroom, you might want to consider moving it to the living room or guest room instead. This way, you'll begin to associate your bedroom with sleep and relaxation, rather than work and stress.

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Putting your bed in the wrong spot.

The guiding principles of feng shui can help position your bed for the most restful night's sleep. For starters, make sure the head of your bed is against a solid wall. Position the bed as far from the door as possible, but so that you're able to see the door to the room while lying down (oftentimes, diagonal from the door is the best spot).

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