We asked sleep experts what products help them sleep: Here’s what they said

This article is part of it CNN Underscored’s Guide to Sleep, a week of focus on everything you need to sleep better. We’ll be introducing new products and exclusive offers throughout the week, so check back every morning to see what’s new.

We live in stressful times and one thing that has been so difficult for many of us is to put the worry aside and relax into a good night’s sleep. Things like work, stress and your sleep hygiene can affect the quality of your sleep, so we spoke to sleep and comfort experts to find helpful tips and tricks so you can rest easier every night .

“The most important thing about getting a good night’s sleep is making sure you set yourself up for success,” says Dr. Michael Grandner, Casper sleep consultant and director of the Sleep and Health Research Program at the University of Arizona. “This means removing sleep-blockers like caffeine, reducing distractions near bedtime, giving yourself plenty of time to relax and keeping your bedroom cool, quiet, dark and comfortable.”

“Something I was taught in my years of physical therapy is called the spring test,” explains physical therapist Karen Joubert. “If you take your pillow and fold it in half and it doesn’t bounce, it means the pillow has lost its integrity. And it’s probably time for a new pillow.”

However, what kind of pillow is right is up to you, says Grandner. “A good pillow is one that’s firm enough but soft enough,” she says. “This can vary from person to person, but the ideal pillow is one that balances comfort with the ability to maintain its level of support throughout the night.”

Check out our picks for the best pillows for every sleeping position here.

Joubert highly recommends this tiny pillow, saying, “It’s a tiny pillow and it goes between your legs. When you sleep on your side with your knees together, your knee pulls on your hip. You really want to lift that leg so that the knee is in line and level with the hip.”

Sleepexperts casper foam

For side sleepers, this foam pillow is ideal for keeping the spine straight, says Grandner.

One reviewer writes: “For over a month, I woke up with a sore throat and tight shoulders, which I knew had to be caused by my pillow. Since finding a good pillow is even harder than finding a good bra or jeans, I asked my chiropractor for a suggestion. She told me about the Casper foam pillow, I went straight home and ordered it, Amazon delivered it the next day and I had a whole week of wonderful, pain free, comfortable and uninterrupted sleep.’

Sleepexperts casper pillow

Warm sleep? This Casper best-selling pillow is an Underscored editor favorite, with microfiber and cotton filling that we can guarantee helps wick away moisture and keep you cool all night long. We bought four at a time. You can choose between a low loft for a flatter pillow (ideal for back sleepers) or a high loft for a fuller one perfect for side sleepers.

marchmzoo eye mask

Eye masks are some of the most effective, inexpensive pieces of sleep technology out there, according to our experts. They are very effective at blocking out ambient light, helping to protect your body’s ‘night time’ signal. This is an Amazon favorite for its molded eye cups that relieve pressure on your eyelids.

Mavogel Cotton Sleep Eye Mask_.jpg

Our pick for the best sleep mask of the year, this cotton eye mask features a nose wire that blocks out all—and we mean all—light. It received top marks in our tests for being easy on the eyes and never moving throughout the night, regardless of our sleeping position.


“Many people, especially light sleepers, appreciate the noise-masking effects of noise machines, which drown out and absorb other sounds from the environment,” says Grandner, who likes this machine.


“So many of us have gone to sleep watching the news or on our phones and can’t turn off our brains,” says Joubert, who recommends this machine. “When you use something like white noise, it retrains the brain. You can focus on something else. It also helps calm and slow down the brain and mind. I think they are very effective.”

the hatch restore sleep experts

Joyce Azzaline, psychiatric nurse practitioner at Minded, also recommends white noise machines, like Hatch’s, to encourage better sleep. “Noise allows for a steady hum, so you’re not disturbed by random noises in the environment, like a siren or horn,” he says. “It keeps your brain busy with a dull sound that’s soothing. Something like Hatch Restore is good because it’s a sound machine that also has a built-in mediation app and an alarm clock so you can leave your phone across the room.”

sleep experts listen and sleep

Our favorite white noise machine? After months of testing, we chose the Sound+Sleep Mini for its white noise capabilities and beyond, with 48 different sounds including rain, streams, fans, ocean sounds, white noise and more. The other devices we tested have some of these soundscapes, but the Mini is one of the only ones that has them all. Our other favorite feature? The fact that it was basically built for travel so you can take it anywhere.

Sleepexperts Holmes True HEPA Air Purifier

“Another trick I use is to get white noise from my air purifier or humidifier,” says Azzaline, pointing to this air purifier. “Cleaner, less dry air can help you breathe better, which in turn can lead to better sleep.”

sleepexperts housing humidifier

Not an Amazon product but fantastic, Azzaline recommends this humidifier and diffuser. “Some humidifiers, like this Canopy, also have a diffuser option for essential oils,” explains Azzaline. “You could use it with a lavender essential oil, which has calming properties and has been found to promote better sleep.”


“Blackout curtains are another great way to protect your sleep from ambient light that can disrupt it,” says Grandner. “They can help you sleep at night, even when the sun is up. Just make sure you open them in the morning!” This highly rated set also keeps out the cold.

amazonsleepBGment Thermal Insulation 100% Blackout Bedroom Blackout Curtains Double Layer Full Room Blackout Noise Reduction Curtain

These equally loved blackout curtains with rings at the top for easy sliding are available at a bargain price and promise to block out light, cold and noise from the outside world, leading to a better night’s sleep.

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Azzaline talks to patients who have sleep problems every day. “In addition to good sleep hygiene (think: going to bed at the same time every night and putting your phone down at least 30 minutes before you nod off), I often recommend a heavy blanket to my patients. It provides a sense of security as it surrounds you so you feel protected and helps calm any restlessness in your legs that may be keeping you awake. I use it personally and always say it feels like a soft hug over my body and it lulls me to sleep. There are many good ones on the market, but the one I use at home has two removable covers, one for winter and one for summer, and they are washable.’

gravity blankets

One of our favorite weighted blankets on the market, the blanket comes in three different colors and the luxurious look of the stitching ensures that the fine beads are evenly distributed throughout the blanket. Gravity even has its own weighted robe.

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“There’s something comforting about a heavy blanket,” says Joubert. “I think it’s a really smart product to hit the market.” This weighted blanket is unique in that it comes with its own machine washable super plush cover and is even available in weights up to 30kg.


Weighted blankets “work by providing a firm, surrounding layer of pressure, not only giving you the feeling of weight, but also restricting your movement,” says Grandner. And this editor-approved, among Amazon’s most loved, is a real bargain for its quality.

casper sleep nova hybrid sleep specialists

“Many people wait too long before replacing an old mattress. Sometimes, that can make a big difference in nighttime comfort,” says Grandner.

Weight and sleep style can also make a difference, Joubert explains. “Someone who is lighter or a side sleeper, you’ll want to go with a more medium-soft or medium-firm mattress.” Check out our guide to the top box mattress brands here.

You may want to look for a firmer mattress like this if you’re a bigger person or sleep on your back, says Joubert. “The heavier you are, say 200 pounds or more, or you sleep on your back, you’ll tend to fall into the medium-firm to firm mattress guidelines,” he says. Layers of breathable foam and springs add some lift, support and airflow to this highly rated mattress.


This medium-firm mattress is also one of the most popular on Amazon, not only because of its actual price, but because of its combination of memory foam and internal construction that helps align the spine and minimize pressure points for to offer you the most comfortable sleep. . Available in heights from 8 inches to 12 inches.

amazonleepsinus 12 inch

Known as the most durable mattress on Amazon, the foam in this 12-inch Zinus is infused with activated charcoal and even green tea to provide pressure relief and properly mold to your body. Particularly ideal for side sleepers, although it only really seems to please every reviewer, it even comes with a 10-year warranty.

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