There’s nothing worse than not being able to drift off, especially when you’ve had a long day or you’ve got a big one coming up. Sleep is one of the most important aspects of health and self-care, but it’s often not given the amount of attention it deserves. Sleep sprays, or pillow mists, are an easy way to help you prepare your mind and body for the deep sleep you crave.
Whether you want to spray directly onto your pillow to breathe in that relaxing lavender scent, or you just want to spritz your room to help ease you into calm, there are multiple products to choose from. But what is the best sleep spray out? Don’t worry, we’ve done the leg work for you by creating this guide to address just that. We’ve also included a list of the best pillow mists in the UK, including popular brands like This Works, NEOM and more.
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Lavender has been used for centuries to help induce a state of relaxation and calm. In fact, the word lavender derives from the Latin word ‘lavare’, which means to wash, as it was commonly used in Roman baths. Hence why it’s often the predominant fragrance found in spas today.
Lavender acts as a natural anxiety reliever helping ease any tension in the brain that we might have accumulated throughout the day. Lavender also reduces blood pressure and helps the body produce melatonin - a hormone that promotes sleep.
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Another great essential oil to look out for in sleep sprays is ylang-ylang. This works especially well in conjunction with lavender and bergamot, increasing the effectiveness of the entire blend.
Specifically, Ylang-Ylang has been found to balance the brain, helping release any negative emotions and thoughts. This is especially important if you often go to bed with your mind racing. It has also been shown to reduce blood pressure, stress, and anxiety, which are all things that hinder sleep.
Chamomile is another popular ingredient found in many sleep-inducing products, from sleep sprays to calming candles to bedtime teas. Operating as a mild tranquilliser, chamomile can help calm anxiety and nerves as it targets the same areas of the brain as anxiety medication.
Chamomile has also been shown to help relieve aches and pains, especially headaches. When paired with lavender, it balances out the strong scent found in the purple herb, making the spritz feel much more delicate than a lavender only concoction.
While the ones above are definitely the most popular, if you’re not a fan of these floral scents, that doesn’t mean you have to go without them. Bergamot is also an excellent ally as it slows the heart rate and lowers blood pressure.
Cedarwood is another great one to note, especially if you suffer from anxiety, as it’s been known to clear negative emotions, preparing your brain for calm. It’s also worth keeping an eye out for sandalwood, marjoram, eucalyptus and neroli.
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Natural fragrances use essential oils, which usually means they cost a little more. If you really struggle with sleep and your dive into sleep sprays is because you’re looking at alternative ways of treatment rather than taking medication, you’ll probably want to go for natural scents. As well as smelling divine, essential oils also carry medicinal properties which can alter your neurological state as well as your body.
But if you just find it a little hard to drift off sometimes and want a lovely calming scent to fill the room before you go to bed, then synthetic fragrances might not be a bad choice. Yes, they don’t carry any of the medicinal effects, but if you’re just looking for a calming scent, there is no harm in going for a cheaper, synthetic fragrance.
There are two options when it comes to the carriers in sleep sprays - water and alcohol. Water is by far the cheaper option, but it does render a little less effective than alcohol. Alcohol droplets are much smaller than water, which allows the essential oils to be dispersed better in a spray.
Also, when mixing water with essential oils, solvents are often used to allows the oils to dissolve better. This means that you’re also taking solvents when breathing in the mist. Whereas alcohol on its own will dissolve the oils so that they’re all mixed in together.
Alcohol is also antibacterial whereas water actually promotes the growth of bacteria. This is why many water-based sprays also contain preservatives, which, again, you are breathing in and sleeping directly near, so consider this when choosing your spray.
The final thing you want to check is how long the fragrance will stay airborne, as this can differ from product to product. Some scents only last for around 1-2 hours, but some bottles claim to remain in the air for up to 8 hours.
So, if you constantly wake up every few hours, maybe the latter is probably the best choice for you. Alcohol sprays tend to have a fragrance that lasts much longer than water-based sprays, so it’s worth bearing that in mind when you shop around.
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Deep Sleep Pillow Spray
The UK's No.1 Sleep Spray for All Ages
NEOM Organics London
Perfect Night's Sleep Pillow Mist
A Blend of 14 Natural Essential Oils for Sleep
Deep Relax Sleep Mix
A Beautiful Blend You Can Team Up With a Bath Oil
Sleep Better Pillow Mist
A Lightweight Mist That Keeps You Asleep for Hours
Vegan, Cruelty-Free Sleep Spray That Cares for Your Skin Too
Pillow Spray Lavender & Chamomile
A Luxury Choice Made With Opulent Damask Rose
Relaxing Pillow Mist
Ready Your Room for Sleep in One Quick Spritz
REN Clean Skincare
& Now to Sleep Pillow Spray
A Soothing, Musky Blend to Relax Mind and Body
Feather & Down
Sweet Dreams Pillow Spray
A Budget-Friendly Way to Try a Pillow Spray
Bloom & Blossom
Baby Pillow Spray｜Pack of 2
All-Natural Sleep Help for Babies Struggling at Night
Probably the most famous sleep spray on the market, The Deep Sleep Pillow Spray by This Works has been sending people to dreamland for years. What’s great is that it’s even safe for children over 3 months, so if your little ones are struggling to doze off, spritz a bit of this spray around and see if it helps. It’s even safe for pets!
Containing a relaxing blend of camomile and lavender, the spray creates a calming environment, settling a busy mind before you go to sleep. There are thousands of reviews singing its praises as it earns a permanent place in many people’s bedtime routines.
Blending a whopping 14 essential oils, the Perfect Night’s Sleep Pillow Mist from NEOM contains the widest selection of essential oils on our list. In the ingredients are the standard English lavender, but also sweet basil and jasmine, which are both proven to induce relaxation.
Transforming your bedroom into a spa in just a few quick spritzes, it will be hard not to hit the hay when the scent fills the room. The formula contains 100% natural ingredients and an alcohol carrier so it should last a good while.
Created as a successor to their cult favourite Deep Relax Bath and Shower Oil, the Deep Relax Sleep Mist from Aromatherapy Associates has become another all-time favourite. Using the same scents and base ingredients, this spray helps create a calming, sleep-enhancing atmosphere perfect for relaxation.
Spray liberally over your pillows, duvet, pyjamas and anywhere else where you want the gorgeous scent to reach your nose, then breathe in and sink deep. If you really want to feel the benefits, why not try it in conjunction with their bath oil!
While the Tisserand Aromatherapy Pillow Mist does contain the essential sleep-inducing lavender, it’s not too overpowering. Blended with jasmine and sandalwood, the spray opts for more of a spa-like feel to help still busy minds and anxious bodies.
What’s great about this option is that even though it is water-based it stays airborne for hours, meaning it’s an excellent pick for those who tend to wake up a few times throughout the night. It’s lightweight too, making it great for misting pillows without ending up with a damp cheek when you lay down.
Another lavender-infused spray, the Wellness Sleep Mist, is scientifically proven to aid in sending you off to dreamland. The formula also contains hyaluronic acid, which replenishes your skin barriers overnight when sprayed on your pillow, face and even your body.
Creating a gorgeous spa-like experience at home, the blend of jasmine, frankincense, patchouli and ylang-ylang essential oils will surely lull you into a calm space ready for a nice deep sleep.
Containing a classic blend of lavender and chamomile, the pillow spray from VOTARY is everything you expect from a night-time mist. The formula also includes a blend of skin-repairing ingredients and antioxidants, making it great for resting your weary skin at night.
This is one of the most expensive sleep sprays on our list, but it’s also one of the largest, so you do get decent value for money. That said, you can tell! With the extra addition of rose, this mist makes you feel like you're bedding in the land of luxury.
With one quick spritz, the pillow mist from L’Occitaine will make you feel like your wandering through the gently swaying lavender fields in the south of France. But it doesn’t only contain the magic purple herb, this blend also includes bergamot, mandarin, geranium and sweet orange.
Together, they create a calming, relaxing energy, however, it can be a little overwhelming and strong for some, so we suggest spraying it on your pillow or in your bedroom a little before you plan to hit the hay, allowing it time to settle. But at least you know it’s going to last throughout the night!
Containing a soothing blend of frankincense, cedarwood, ylang-ylang, lavender and hops, the pillow spray from REN works wonders to relieve muscle pain, calm your mind and create a restful atmosphere. Unlike the usual floral scent of pillow mists, this one is more woody and earthy.
While not a common ingredient in pillow sprays, frankincense is an excellent one to include to relax your mind and body, with many herbalists using it to aid in anxiety. Unfortunately, the spray is water-based, which means that the fragrance might not stay airborne too long.
The pillow sprays from Feather & Down contains the standard relaxation ingredients of lavender and chamomile that help calm an anxious mind and ease you into the land of nod. With an enviable following on Amazon, this is an excellent purchase if you’re looking for a budget-friendly option.
The reviews speak for themselves, with many people never even considering trying another sleep spray after giving this one a go. However, with a water-based formula, the scent might not hang around too long.
Here's one specifically created for the little ones in your life who have trouble getting to sleep at night. It's created with a blend of fragrances, it is quite strong, so you only need a quick spray to allow the mist to fill the room with calming fragrance.
If you’re not a fan of lavender, this is an excellent choice as the strongest notes come from the frankincense, rose and linden blossom. Although it is suitable for children as young as newborns, the ingredients list simply states 'parfum' rather than a list of essential oils.
Sure, buying a wonderfully scented sleep spray is great, but you can also get crafty and create your own personalised concoction tailored to your scent preferences. This video will give you the foundations and inspiration on how to make your own sleep spray, happy mixing!
Written and researched by Roxy Pratley
No. 1: This Works｜Deep Sleep Pillow Spray
No. 2: NEOM Organics London｜Perfect Night's Sleep Pillow Mist
No. 3: Aromatherapy Associates｜Deep Relax Sleep Mix
No. 4: Tisserand Aromatherapy｜Sleep Better Pillow Mist
No. 5: Sanctuary Spa｜Sleep Mist
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