Ask any new parent what they want most and sleep is often the answer — likely followed by a home-cooked meal and a shower. It’s no secret that having a baby takes a toll on your nightly winks. But there are some new tools out there to help you get the best rest possible. Read on and sleep well. We promise.
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Set aside 10 minutes each day for guided meditation and you’ll up your sleep game instantly, in addition to decreasing stress, reducing the risk of postpartum depression, and boosting your emotional regulation. It can even increase milk production for all you nursing mamas. Backed by a team of meditation experts, sound engineers, psychologists, and ob-gyns, the Expectful app ($9.99/month) has specific practices for preparing for sleep and returning to sleep that will help you achieve more mindfulness and ZZZs. The evidence-based programs are also intended for women trying to get pregnant and expecting mamas-to-be.
SNOOZ White Noise Machine
It’s not only babies who sleep better with the comforting drone of a white noise machine. This portable version by Snooz ($79.99) is so sleek and stylish you won’t mind it in your bedroom. This dream machine uses an actual fan within the case to create a natural, soothing sound. It also syncs with an app that allows you to turn SNOOZ on and off, adjust the volume, and set a shut-off time.
Using materials like down, latex, and buckwheat, Slumbr has been taking pillows to new levels for a little more than a year. Take a sleep quiz or simply choose from the company’s six-piece pillow menu to find the best one that suits your sleep style and needs (starting at $60). With plenty of slim, plush, hypoallergenic, ultra-supportive, contouring, and therapeutic options to choose from, any side, back, or stomach sleeper can find the perfect pillow.
4M Adjustable Power Bed by Reverie
Once you’ve found the right pillow, consider upgrading what you’re sleeping on. The new 4M Adjustable Power Bed (starting at $1,099) is pricy but has lots of cool bells and whistles. It’s fully adjustable at the head and foot and uses 3D wave technology to massage you (at ten different intensities) while you sleep. This bed is compatible with most mattresses and uses a whisper-quiet lift system so you don’t wake a sleeping baby in your room. It’s ideal for not only catching winks between feedings, but also comfortable nursing and post-partum recovery.
Sleep Essential Oils Towelettes by Sage Tonic
Looking for a more affordable solution? Consider aromatherapy, which isn’t just for the spa. Tired parents may reap the benefits of scent to help them sleep. These towelettes ($14 on Amazon.com) are packed with essential oils, including lavender and patchouli, for rest and relaxation. Press them on your pulse points or lay a towelette on your face and breathe in. Free of artificial stuff and GMOs, these naturally antibacterial wipes are safe to use around babies.
Fade to Black Pillow Spray by Goodnight Darling Co.
Before your head hits the pillow, spritz some of this artisan fragrance blend ($26) on it to envelop your senses in rest-inducing scent. Just 3 or 4 hits is enough to calm nerves and promote the kind of sleep you got before you had a baby. It’s vegan, cruelty-free, and safe to use around little ones.
Relax by Cheribundi
Being a parent is a lot like being an athlete. It’s physically challenging, mentally draining, and you want to perform at your best. So new parents can take a cue from sports professionals when it comes to drinking tart cherry juice for peak sleep performance. The juice from a whopping 160 cherries is in every Cheribundi Relax bottle ($27 for 12 bottles), and tart cherries are a natural source of melatonin, which promotes better rest. Valerian root and green tea extract are also in the new Relax formula. These natural sleep aids help decrease the time it takes to fall asleep, which is key when your infant is waking every few hours.
SmartWake by Verlo
Learning about your sleep patterns may help you improve your rest. The new SmartWake sleep monitor (starting at $199) uses a sensor disc to keep track of your sleep quality, heart rate, breathing, and movement throughout the night. It’s also a smarter alarm clock: Set the alarm for the timeframe you want to wake up in, and it’ll rouse you when you’re in the lightest phase of sleep, so you’ll awaken more refreshed.
Good Morning Alarm Clock by Apalon
If a more gentle wake-up call is your focus, check out the Good Morning Alarm Clock app ($4.99). It lulls you to sleep with your favorite music or relaxing sounds, monitors your sleep quality and tallies any sleep debt, and then wakes you during your lightest phase of sleep when your body is most rested. The app keeps all your sleep stats at the ready and will even send you an alert if you need more sleep (a safe bet for new parents).
The Morning Sidekick Journal by Habit Nest
The key to making your mornings as a parent joyful instead of stressful? Productivity. Waking up before your little one sounds tough but is a valuable habit to give you precious time to relax, recharge, get something done, and start your day intentionally. The new Morning Sidekick Journal ($33.90) guides you through how to set up a healthy and efficient routine to take on the day’s challenges. Expect to take about 12 full weeks to find your new sunrise rhythm and you might be surprised at how morning becomes your favorite time of day.
What’s your best trick for getting better sleep? Share in the comments!
— Whitney C. Harris