When it’s wintertime, it’s time to slow down and get lots of rest. The best way to get great sleep is to make sure your bedroom is in perfect shape for the best ZZZs!
Hello! Chris Brantner is joining us today to talk about creating a winter ready bedroom. Take it away, Chris. You don’t have to be a member of House Stark to know it: winter is coming. Temperatures are beginning to drop fast and many parts of the country are already bracing for the brutal winter chill. Whether you live in a mild or frigid climate, winter weather can drastically change how your bedroom feels at night when you snuggle up into bed. During winter months, the temperature in your bedroom can drop by as much as fifteen degrees or more, making it necessary to prepare for winter or risk a whole season of nights spent shivering under your blankets. Your bed is the go-to place to get warm and snug when temperatures fall, but if your bedroom isn’t prepared for winter, you might find yourself dreading going to bed at night. Luckily, there are some easy and affordable ways you can prepare your bedroom for cozy winter sleep.
1. Seal Your Windows
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Windows are the main way your home loses its heat, accounting for about 30% of your home’s lost heat on average. Not only can drafty old windows make your bedroom feel like a freezer at night, but all that cold air can mean a huge increase in your home’s energy bill. While we all wish we could replace old windows with newer, more energy efficient models, that isn’t always an option. Luckily, there are many affordable products on the market to seal up your windows and keep drafts out. The simplest of these are adhesive-backed foam strips you can place around the edges and openings of windows to create an air barrier. Other options include plastic laminates that seal to your windows or even drop-in flexible panes of plastic that create a second barrier. Check out your local hardware store to see what options are available.
2. Caulk All the Gaps
Like sealing your bedroom’s windows, caulking all the gaps and cracks throughout your bedroom and home can go a long way towards creating a perfect, cozy bedroom for winter. Check around all windows and doors, looking along the outer edges of frames for any cracks or gaps between the frame(s) and the walls. If your home has crown moulding, there might be gaps which could let in cool air from between the walls of your home. Caulk is inexpensive and found at any hardware store, and even comes in many different colors to match your home’s materials or existing caulk. Just remember: don’t overdo it or you risk it drying improperly. Go slowly, put down painter’s tape, and use caulk-shaping tools or the corner of a credit card for a seamless look.
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3. Check Your Home's Insulation
Insulation is one of the most commonly overlooked elements of winterizing your home, mostly because it’s easy to forget about it since it’s out of sight. While there’s often not much you can do to change the insulation in between your home’s walls, insulation under floors and in ceilings can often be easily accessed through ceilings, crawl spaces, or basements. Check the R-value of your home’s insulation to make sure it’s up to local codes - it should be printed on the paper backing of fiberglass insulation. Also look for any signs of rotting, deterioration, or insufficient coverage. Insulation is your home’s primary way of keeping cold out and heat in, so a little extra investment in high-quality insulation will save you money on utility bills in the long run.
4. Reverse Your Ceiling Fan
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Ceiling fans are most often used in warmer months to keep the air in your home circulating downward, but most ceiling fans are actually reversible to help push hot air out away from the ceiling and fill entire rooms. In winter months, your fan should spin clockwise. Check the base of your ceiling fan for a switch that will reverse the direction of the blades’ spin - just make sure to change directions while the fan is off. It’s also a good idea to clean your blades of dust before you change directions, as the change can often dislodge dust and cause it to rain down. During winter, run your ceiling fan at low speed in a clockwise direction to keep hot air circulating down towards the floor. This can help keep your energy bill down, especially in homes which do not have central heat.
5. Put Some Rugs Down
If your home isn’t carpeted, an easy way to prepare for a winter of cozy sleep is to put down rugs. Rugs can trap cool air close to the floor and prevent it from circulating around the room. Rugs also act as an insulator, helping to trap some of the warmth put out by heaters. Best of all, rugs keep your sensitive feet from coming into contact with cold surfaces when you have to get out of bed in the middle of the night. While it’s possible to spend thousands of dollars on rugs, you don’t have to break the bank to get an effective heat barrier for winter. Check your local big box or discount stores for available options, and quit tip-toeing through winter.
6. Get a Dedicated Bedroom Space Heater
When you’re sleeping, there’s no point in heating your entire home if you’re going to be spending the entire night in bed. Rather than keeping your thermostat up all night or running a heater throughout your home, keep a small to medium sized space heater in the bedroom to keep things nice and cozy while you sleep. Space heaters come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and heating methods to suit your bedroom’s needs. Many space heaters have a built-in thermostat to keep from running up your electric bill, and some space heaters even come with built-in humidifiers to prevent them from drying out the air overnight. Do your research before buying, and quit throwing away money heating unoccupied rooms at night.
7. Layer Your Bedding
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There’s nothing better than climbing into a warm, well-covered bed after a long day in the winter cold. It’s one of life’s simplest and most universal pleasures. To get the most out of your bed in winter, be sure to layer your bedding correctly. While many people want to simply pile on as many warm blankets as possible, that can leave you too warm or stuffy at night or wake you up. To layer your bedding properly, begin with a mattress topper for extra insulation underneath you, particularly if you sleep on a soft mattress. Next, use thin, breathable fitted and top sheets to create a ventilation layer. 1000 thread count sheets have a great weight and thickness for winter. Next, a thick and heavy duvet or comforter will keep warm air next to your body. Wool is a great insulator, but so are other synthetic materials. Finally, keep an extra quilt or blanket by your feet in case you need some extra warmth at night. You never know when the heat or electricity will go out, and these bedroom bedding ideas will help you keep warm!
8. Trick Your Mind into Feeling Warmer
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While space heaters, blankets, and rugs go a long way towards warming you up during winter, sometimes your mind can trick you into feeling cold no matter how much heat you surround yourself with. To help game your brain into feeling warmer, invest a little time (or money) into the furniture and decor of your room. Warm colors like reds, oranges, and browns remind us of fires and heat, so decorating your bedroom with these hues can work to make the room feel warmer and cozier. Another simple trick is to place warm, pleasant scents around the room with candles, incense, or infusers. Smells like cinnamon or pumpkin pie can remind you of holiday cheer and help warm your body and mind. Finally, try even pulling up a few videos of a roaring fire or fireplace scene on your TV or laptop; having the sights and sounds of a fire in your bedroom can really make things cozy during the dark, cold winter.
9. Tuck Your Clothes in with You at Night
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One of the easiest ways to make your winter mornings cozy is one practiced by all-weather campers and outdoorsmen. Before you go to sleep at night, tuck whatever clothes you’re going to wear in the morning into the bed with you, either at your feet or beside you. As you sleep, your body heat will keep your pajamas or clothes warm so that you’re not putting on cold clothes filled with cold air in the morning. It might feel silly at first, but you’ll be a convert after the first morning you put on a warm pair of socks right when you wake up.
10. Invest in an Electric Blanket
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When all else fails, it’s time to break out the big guns. Electric blankets might seem like overkill, but they really work. Electric blankets contain thin, flexible wires inside which put off a gentle heat when plugged in. They come in two main varieties: those meant to go under a fitted sheet, and those meant to be placed on top of you while you sleep. Either one works great and can be found at most home goods or department stores. Just be careful: an estimated 5,000 house fires a year are thought to be started by faulty electric blankets. Buy a new one rather than a used one, and make sure it was manufactured after 2001 when new safety standards were put in place.
What do you think of these bedroom ideas? I think they’ll help you stay nice and cozy warm all winter long. Are there any tricks you use in your current bedroom design? Let us know in the comments below. Don’t forget to share this post with your friends! Until next time!