Nesting in Your New Space: How to Make Your Bedroom a Sleeping Sanctuary

You’ve finally arrived in your new place, exhausted after a long day of moving heavy boxes. While you probably hastily set up your bed (or maybe just put it right on the floor) and slept in semi-clean sheets, the following days and weeks give you the opportunity to reset your bedroom and make it a true sleeping sanctuary.


Unless the prior occupant was a Class-A neatnik, you’ll want to do your own deep clean in your bedroom before you get totally settled. Shampoo carpets, clean wood floors, vacuum blinds, and wash walls. Your lungs will thank you, the dust bunnies will run away in fear, and you’ll save time and energy by cleaning first.

Assess your mattress

This is a good time to prioritize sleep. Do you find your mattress exceedingly comfortable? You should. After all, you spend a solid third of each day lying in bed. Make it a good one.

If you’re satisfied with your current mattress, you can refresh the bed by vacuuming it to lift dust and then sprinkling with baking soda to remove odors. Unsightly stains? Mix eight ounces of hydrogen peroxide, three tablespoons of baking soda, and a drop of dish soap and spritz over stains for a magical whitening solution.

Evaluate your sheets

Is your bedding snuggle-up worthy? Bedding that is too hot or too cold can be easily fixed for a better night of sleep. Now is a great opportunity to swap out old sets that just aren’t the right fit. A quick-fix guide: use cotton for breathability, use microfiber for cost-effectiveness and wrinkle-resistance, and use flannel for cold nights.

Wash your pillows

Yep, even pillows in cases can get nasty. Wash instead of toss! Check out this helpful post on how to wash and whiten yellowed pillows.  

Arrange carefully

Devote some extra thought and effort to bedroom arrangement. Pick the spot for your bed first, since it’s the biggest: try to place it away from walls shared with a bathroom to cut down on middle-of-the-night noise (and if you don’t want a draft, avoid placing your bed under windows as well). After you pick a spot for your bed, work your way through your current furniture from the largest to the smallest. Don’t buy new furniture until your current pieces are placed.

Declutter and simplify

Your bedroom should be a place for rest and relaxation. Why have four books on your nightstand when just one will do? Why create a treasure hunt of dirty socks in your room when they can be wrangled into one out-of-sight laundry basket? If you can give a place for everything and put everything in its place, you’ll cut down on noisy clutter that may cause added stress before getting in bed.

Add plants

Leafy beauties help clean and recycle the air in your breathing space and they can also add freshness to your bedroom. Try aloe vera, lavender, or jasmine for their air-cleaning, sleep-promoting effects.

Run the darkness test

At night, are there any blinking lights that should be covered up? Is light seeping in from the windows? Take extra measures to make your bedroom pitch black with blackout curtains or covers for pesky lights (sticky notes will often do the trick). Too much work? Try a sleeping mask instead.

Give your phone a new home

We suggest charging your phone away from your bed so you won’t be tempted to keep scrolling, scrolling, scrolling in the wee morning hours. This is a good time to make the switch: before you have a “usual” spot for the phone next to the bed, a simple move across the room to a distant outlet should do the trick.

Keep your bedroom as a place set apart

Try to keep this room extra clean and free of clutter, and keep it devoted for things best done in the bedroom: sleeping and sex. Anything extraneous—watching Netflix, Snapchatting your friends—will interrupt your body’s natural getting-ready-for-bed flow. That’s not to say you won’t do these things, but just try to keep everything in moderation, as with all good things.