For some, it’s a crucial part of their morning routine, as instinctive as brushing your teeth twice a day. The fluffing of pillows and shake out of a duvet, not to mention the pull of crinkled sheets so that they remain taught and inviting for the evening, are all necessary steps to see you head out the door and attack the day, just like you would any other. For others though, the idea of making the bed daily is an activity they’d rather avoid at all costs. Beds are simply the resting places we crash into when tiredness overwhelms us, so what’s the point of spending elaborate minutes – minutes we’d rather spend elsewhere – simply making it look respectable when really, all we need is a firm mattress?
If you consider yourself part of the latter camp, otherwise those known as Individuals Against Daily Bed-making, then you’re in luck. According to recent research, the transformational benefits of making your bed every morning might not be all it’s cracked up to be. In fact, according to science, not making your bed could actually be better for your health.
Experts from the Sleep Council discovered that not making the bed allows the mattress to air out and remove any fluids lost during sleep. It might sound strange, but adults lose an average of 285 millilitres of fluid while sleeping. These fluids are, as you might expect, an issue when it comes to bed hygiene and by not making the bed, unhealthy moisture has a chance to dry out and bit become trapped in the bed.
It’s something that’s incredibly important when it comes to the warmer temperatures, and the Sleep Council urges those daily bed makers to try and be more relaxed when it comes to bed making during summer. As Martin Gill of So To Bed explained to the Daily Mail, “By making our beds in the morning, we are trapping in that moisture, not allowing it to evaporate, which could lead to issues within the mattress fibres.”
“Instead, pull back the linen and mattress protector, open the windows, and give your mattress some much needed ventilation,” he added.
If all that wasn’t enough, research from a 2017 study conducted by Kingston University found that making the bed traps dust mites that have accumulated overnight. Made beds also have the potential to become breeding grounds for allergens that can exaggerate asthma and skin conditions.
For those in the business of making the bed, the idea of flipping mattresses has also become something of a trend. This depends on the type of mattress you have though, as experts suggest that double-sided mattresses can be flipped and should come with the instruction to turn over regularly. For the first three months of having your mattress, it’s recommended that you turn it over once a week. After that, turning it over just once a month is perfectly fine and ensures that the filling is evenly placed and stops dips from forming. Single-sided mattresses can’t be flipped, but should still be rotated 180 degrees.
Ultimately, if you want to practice good sleep hygiene, rather consider regularly washing your bedding and mattress protector. Bed linen should be washed every one to two weeks, and your mattress protector once a month. This will stop any dirt from seeping through the mattress, keeping it cleaner for longer.