More than just pretty, there’s a lot of science behind our product range. We hand selected all our products for their proven ability to support sleep. This week, we’re talking about a rather underrated sleep products: socks.
Wearing socks to bed has long been a more divisive topic than that dress (it was clearly white and gold). But there’s a surprising amount of science behind this lifestyle choice.
The science-y bit
Studies have shown that sleeping in socks to bed helps you go to sleep faster and stay asleep for longer. The average adult takes 15 minutes to fall asleep, however wearing socks shaves down this time by 7.5 minutes! If that isn’t enough for you, the typical bedtime sock wearer you will sleep for an average of 30 minutes longer. It also decreases the number of night-wakings by almost seven times.
So how exactly does it work? Well, socks help us to thermoregulate - manage our core body temperature - more efficiently. Warming your feet helps support vasodilation - the widening of blood vessels - which allows more efficient blood circulation. So simply warming your feet spreads that warmth around the body evenly balancing our body temperature!
This is why socks are particularly helpful for those who suffer from conditions that imbalance body temperature such as hot flashes, night sweats, or Raynaud’s syndrome. In fact, compression socks are a widely recognised support for those with poor circulation. Never wear compression socks to bed unless prescribed from your doctor.
Natural fibre vs. synthetic fibre
Will any socks do? Well, not really. Most synthetic fibres do not absorb sweat so it stays trapped between the fabric and your skin, leaving you clammy and uncomfortable.
Natural fibres like cashmere, however, are extremely effective at thermoregulation simply because they have to be. I mean have you ever seen a sheep shivering?
Natural fibres work to absorb moisture quickly. They trap the heat in the fibres and release the vapour so the fibres don’t become saturated, leaving your skin cool and sweat free!
Alternatives to a pair of socks
If you can't stand socks, here are some good (but slightly less effective) methods to try:
- Warmed socks by leaving them on the radiator before bed.
- If you hate socks, put a heating pad at the foot of the bed.
- Warm baths, foot baths and hot water bottles can be good alternatives.
If you have the luxury of being a good sleeper, you can forgo the socks. However, if you suffer with sleep loss like two-thirds of the world, or even just cold feet, then socks are the most simple and effective way of improving your sleep quality and length.
If you're interested in learning more about sleep, circadian rhythm, sleep cycles, and more then head over to our articles.