11 best sleep aids you can buy online – from sleep sprays to silk pillowcases

The Real Homes edit on the best tried and tested sleep aids to help you sleep better – for eight hours sleep EVERY night

Sleep aids: Woman sleeping under duvet
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Searching for sleep aids? If you are struggling to fall asleep, stay asleep or lay in on the weekends, then we are here to help – it's very important that us adults get eight hours of kip every night. Especially while times are tough and you may be finding yourself awake, tossing and turning in the early hours of the morning. A £15 remedy could do the trick and help you catch a restful night of shuteye – like these ones below.

I have been trying a range of sleep remedies – from sprays to a weighted blanket, a silk eye mask and more – and I am here to tell you the ones that actually work. It's also worth me quickly noting that I am not a doctor – please do contact your GP if you are having serious sleep issues.

Of course, if you can't sleep, it's worth considering if you have the best mattress for you. Check out our list of 2021's top picks. 

1. Try out some sleep spray

Simba Sleep Spray

(Image credit: Simba)

Sleep sprays should be the first thing on your list when it comes to help sleeping – they are a natural remedy and with just a few sprays needed to lull you asleep, it's easy stuff. They are quite cheap, too. We've tried the Simba Sleep spray and we love it, and the This Works sleep spray has been recommended to us by so many people.

Simba Sleep Spray | £13.50 at Simba
A bargain price to pay for a good night's sleep, this spray is made from 100 per cent essential oils – from lavender to coconut, lemon, eucalyptus and more. It's also in a lovely looking bottle that we definitely don't mind having on our bedside table. Just a few sprays should help you drift off to sleep, and the smell will make your hair smell lovely, too. Soothing doesn't quite cut it.View Deal

This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray | £19.50 £17.58 (save £1.92) at Amazon
Made totally from pure essential oils and natural fragrances, this deep sleep pillow spray features a lovely blend of lavender, chamomile and vetiver. It's also free from sulphates, phthalates, synthetic colours, petrolatum, parabens and GMOs for your peace of mind; as a brand, This Works are environmentally friendly, too. Improve your sleep quality once and for all. View Deal

2. Switch to silk pillowcases for a comfortable snooze – and no bed hair!

John Lewis & Partners The Ultimate Collection Silk Standard Pillowcase

(Image credit: John Lewis)

Sleeping on a silk pillowcase has truly revolutionised my nighttime routine – pretty much as soon as my head hits that soft pillow, I immediately feel relaxed. Also, if you are a hot sleeper, this is a dream – a silk pillowcase rarely gets warm so when I turnover in my sleep, I am greeted with a lovely cold pillow.

John Lewis & Partners The Ultimate Collection Silk Standard Pillowcase | £45 at John Lewis & Partners
Made from the highest quality Mulberry silk, this is the pillowcase I have at home – and the one that you need, too. It's hypoallergenic and breathable, while it comes in 12 colour options, too, so you can match it to your bedroom colour scheme.View Deal

3. Change your pillow to suit the way you sleep

Simba Hybrid pillow on table

(Image credit: Simba)

There's no denying that your pillow has the power to cause a bad night's sleep – I once tested one that was completely the wrong construction for the way I sleep, and after a few days I actually had neck cramp (you can imagine just how grumpy it made me, too). See our best pillows guide to find one to suit your sleeping positions, or see a quick rundown below.

  • Overall best – Simba Hybrid Pillow
  • For back sleepers – Eve Memory Foam Pillow
  • For front sleepers – Snuggledown Scandinavnian Duck Feather and Down Pillow

4. Buy a weighted blanket for a nighttime cuddle

John Lewis & Partners Specialist Synthetic Weighted Blanket

(Image credit: John Lewis & Partners)

A weighted blanket is the cuddle you need at night, for when you are feeling anxious or when you can't sleep for whatever reason. Choose a weight (they recommend 10 per cent of your body weight) and a colour, and pop it over your duvet while you are sleeping. Or, you could buy one and snuggle up under it on your sofa, pop it over your legs, or just around your shoulders. It's designed to help reduce restlessness and aid relaxation.

Just a note: we suggest avoiding these if you sleep on your front as the weight on your back may be too much! Also, if you are pregnant or you suffer from respiratory disorders, such as asthma or sleep apnoea or any circulatory disorders including type 2 diabetes, you should avoid, too.

John Lewis & Partners Specialist Synthetic Weighted Blanket | £60 - £110 at John Lewis
This weighted blanket was once completely sold out online, and for good reason, too. There are six different weight options and the inside is weighted with tiny glass beads and that creates a very even weight throughout the blanket.


View Deal

John Lewis & Partners Synthetic Collection Weighted Blanket | £100 - £120 at John Lewis
With three weights to choose from – 7kg, 9kg or 11,5kg – this lovely weighted blanket will keep you warm and reassuringly cosy. It has a machine-washable cover, too.View Deal

5. Invest in some high-quality bedding

Habitat Tufted Leaf Reversible White Bedding Set

(Image credit: Habitat)

There's no doubting that good quality bedding can enhance your sleep – we're talking about a 100 per cent cotton set, or a silk option. Choose something comfortable for you, and looks are obviously a huge factor, too! We suggest these two sets below (tried and loved by us!):

Habitat Tufted Leaf Reversible White Bedding Set | From £40 at Habitat
This set was £45 for a king size, which I think is actually quite reasonable since it's made from 100 per cent percale cotton and it's 180 thread count. It also comes with two matching pillowcases. It has buttons for fastening and View Deal

Washed Linen Duvet Cover | From £80 £56 at La Redoute
This gorgeous linen duvet cover is a bargain! It has 40 per cent off right now and it comes in a range of colours and sizes. It's super comfortable and will make your bedroom look dreamy, too. Because no one likes itchy bedding.View Deal

6. Don't want to splurge on a new mattress? Buy a mattress topper

Panda mattress topper

(Image credit: Panda)

Perhaps your mattress is what is keeping you up all night? Whether you don't want to splurge on the price of a new one at the moment, or, perhaps your one is new? Either way it's important that you get a good night's sleep. And investing in a mattress topper should help – choose based on 

Panda The Topper | From £99.95 at Panda
This mattress topper is definitely worth a try. It is our #1 rated, after all. It uses third generation memory foam, which allows the mattress topper to easily breathe and mould to your body's shape. It even comes with a removable cover for easy washing. Dreamy. Read our Panda mattress topper review for more info.View Deal

Check out our best mattress toppers guide for other buys.

7. Invest in a wake up light to simulate the sunset (and sunrise) in your bedroom

Lumie Bodyclock Rise 100

(Image credit: Lumie)

Whether you suffer from SAD symptoms or not, a wake up light is definitely a great buy for the wintertime. Pop it on your bedside once it arrives in the post and use it morning and evening, to simulate the summertime light and help you drift off to sleep (and wake up) in a nice way. It also reduces the production of melatonin and increases cortisol in your body to help you get up and go. A great buy for anyone who isn't a natural morning person! Don't worry: you can snooze it for when you're just too tired.

Lumie Bodyclock Rise 100 | £79 at Amazon
This Lumie wake up light is one of the best you can buy – with a gradual sunrise option to wake naturally, and you can control light intensity. You can also use it to unwind in the evenings, and it's great for children. Easy to control and the perfect size for a bedside table.View Deal

See our guide to the best wake up lights for more recommendations.

8. Change your lightbulbs to these smart dimming ones 

It could be the harsh lighting in your bedroom (or home in general) that is stopping you from getting some good sleep. Really, you should set your lights to dim around 30 minutes before you are hoping to sleep. Either that, or use a smart bulb and change your light to blue – this will aid relaxation. Alternatively, we use these Phillips bulbs (and the smart button) to control our lighting and dim it with ease. So that when we are ready for bed we needn't get up to switch the light off.

Philips Hue White Ambiance Smart Bulb Twin Pack | £57.98 £47.79 (save £9.19) at Amazon
We own some of these Philips Hue bulbs ourselves, and we can safely say that they are incredible. Put them in your bedroom (and your living room, hallway, etc) and stick the smart button on your wall. Connect them all to your phone and customise how bright you want your bulbs to turn on depending on the time of day. This can help you unwind at night – we have ours set to dim from 8 pm. Take the smart button to your bedside with you and just press it to turn on your lights in the morning without leaving your bed. Also great for parents who wake up in the night to feed, change nappies...View Deal

9. Buy a silk eye mask for a deeper sleep (trust us)

Scooms Silk Eye Mask

(Image credit: Scooms)

We can't recommend a sleep mask enough, especially if you are someone who wakes early in the morning (when it is just getting light) and from then cannot get back to sleep – we use one every day. If you are like us, then it's important to buy one that's of good quality, and this one is made from Mulberry Silk to keep your lashes fluttering and your skin looking (and feeling) lovely.

Scooms Silk Eye Mask | £25 at Scooms
This silk eye mask comes in lots of colours – we have it in Champagne – and it comes with a lovely bag for when you're packing it to go away. It's elasticated, and free from chemicals and toxins, too.View Deal

10. Buy a sleep diffuser – from The White Company – and pop it in your bedroom (20% off today!)

The White Company Sleep Diffuser

(Image credit: The White Company)

The White Company Sleep Diffuser | £35 at The White Company
Buy this diffuser and pop it in your bedroom, or gift it to your sleep-deprived friend. With notes of six essential oils from lavender to chamomile, it's said to help quieten the mind and relieve tension. Try it out for yourself...View Deal

See our best reed diffusers guide for more buys.

11. Looking for a new mattress? This is the very best deal right now...

Emma mattress in bedroom

(Image credit: Emma)

- EXCLUSIVE TO REAL HOMES -

Emma Birthday sale| Save 37% off everything + enter to win your cash back
In celebration of a birthday, Emma are offering 37 per cent off everything - that's a mattress, mattress protector and pillow - when you are to use discount code REAL37 at the checkout. And to further celebrate this milestone, they have also launched a competition across the UK and Ireland to offer five lucky customers the chance to win the cost of their purchase back. 

It's an opportunity too good to miss but hurry, deal ends on the 10th of February.View Deal

See our cheap mattress deals page for plenty more offers.