1. Start with an eco-friendly bed and mattress. The most earth-friendly option is to go without a frame, or refresh the frame you’ve already got with a little TLC (vintage and antiques are smart choices). If you are in the market for a new bed, look for a frame made from sustainable materials such as reclaimed wood or recycled metal. And don’t worry about sacrificing style. You’ll find an array of chic frames that are 100% green, such as the Jianni bed by Cocopa that we recently featured and the Gustavian vintage bed (shown below) everyone adores at VivaTerra.
Next up: the mattress. It’s really not very eco-friendly to rush out and buy a whole new mattress, so wait to spring for the healthy, organic version when your existing mattress is worn out (no jumping to speed the process). Most organic mattresses consist of quilted layers of organic cotton and wool for supreme comfort, with a range of firmness options available on sites like Green Nest to suit your personal preference.
2. The bedding, of course: it’s easy to see why eco-friendly sheets from sites like Satara have recently gained popularity among green shoppers. Made with organic cotton or bamboo fiber, they are both hypoallergenic and unbelievably soft. And for something bright and cheerful, check out the Woodland duvet cover.
3. Pillows made from organic natural fibers, such as cotton, kapok, and buckwheat and millet hulls, are free of contaminants and synthetic materials, so they’re a smart choice. Make sure to wash your pillow at least once a year to keep it fresh and clean. (Check out The Proper Way to Wash a Pillow.)
4. The squish: for a little extra cushioning, try an earth-friendly memory foam pad. Made from renewable, plant-based raw materials with an organic cotton cover, these green finds from Bragada will help you sleep better with comfort of mind and body.
5. The wash: use eco-friendly laundry detergent to wash your sheets and duvet cover. At Naturally Home, you’ll find a list of nontoxic, biodegradable products that won’t harm the environment.
6. The room: you’ll get your best night’s sleep if you keep your room hotel-dark and very quiet. (Eye masks really do work wonders.) If your home doesn’t reduce the noise outside, invest in a CD of gentle nature sounds, or good old earplugs. And be sure to turn off all gadgets, electronics and appliances, and unplug them, as well. This saves energy and also cuts down on noise. It’s also a good idea to keep something scented nearby that promotes relaxation – such as lavender sprigs in a satchel under your pillow, or a favorite essential oil.
7. You: you won’t sleep well if you aren’t well, no matter how eco-friendly and healthy your bed is. Shut off all distractions (email, phone, television) at least an hour before bed, drink some Sweet Dreams Elixir, and if you’re the type to lie awake with racing thoughts, journal it out or practice guided meditation for a serene night’s sleep.