A Good Night’s Sleep – Finally!

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Think about the one piece of furniture you use more than anything – your bed. “Most people are in bed eight hours a day,” says Mary Pat Wallace, owner of Chicago Luxury Beds. “Eight hours of sleep is the daily average, but most sleep specialists recognize not everyone is built that way. Some people can function on four hours of sleep. Either way, why not get a few great hours of sleep in a great bed?”

CHOOSE A MATTRESS
Size matters. “Buy the biggest bed you can afford, especially if you’re sharing with someone,” advises Ms. Wallace, who recommends a king-sized bed. “Half of a queen-sized bed is smaller than a child’s twin bed.” That said, more than one person can’t rest comfortably in a queen-sized bed.
And what’s the difference between a ‘U.S. King’ and ‘California King’ bed? “A U.S. King is 76 inches wide by 80 inches long, while a California King is 72 inches wide by 84 inches long,” shares Ms. Wallace. “Taller people may prefer California Kings, but mostly U.S. Kings are sold in the Midwest.”

FIND THE RIGHT TENSION
“Lay on your side,” instructs Ms. Wallace. “If your bed has the right tension for your body, your hip and shoulder should dip into the bed and allow your spine and neck to be in a straight, horizontal line. Your back will be supported and the mattress will release pressure from your discs.”
Tension is connected to body weight; firmness corresponds to the required amount of force exerted on the springs within the bed in order to move them. “When looking at the Vi-Spring mattresses sold at Chicago Luxury Beds, those who weigh up to 150 pounds need a soft bed,” says Ms. Wallace. “151-210 need medium, 211-270 firm and 271-plus extra firm.”
But what if you’re sharing your bed with someone who weighs more/less than you do? “With many couples, the wife is smaller than the husband,” observes Ms. Wallace. “But all mattresses we sell can have split tensions. There are over 200 possibilities for every couple.”

LOOK FOR LINENS
“The key with linens is you want natural materials like cotton, silk or bamboo,” shares Ms. Wallace. “They all ‘breathe’ and have similar qualities, like absorbing moisture and evaporating it quickly.” But with cotton sateen sheets, when you get into the high thread counts (1,000, 1,800 and so on), they’re made from a much heavier fabric. “They won’t breathe as well as a higher quality Egyptian long thread cotton sheet that’s only a 400 thread count,” says Ms. Wallace, noting you should go for the higher thread count if you prefer the feel of heavier linens.

CUSTOM PILLOWS?
The right pillow contributes to a good night’s sleep. Unfortunately, too many people have a closet full of pillows they don’t use. “The way most people buy pillows is by taking them off the shelf and squeezing them in between their hands to determine softness/firmness,” observes Ms. Wallace. “But you can’t return pillows, and many people end up tossing them into the closet after one night of sleep because they’re either too soft or too hard.”
To solve that problem, the Pillow Bar at Chicago Luxury Beds allows you to lie on various pillows and request modifications. “For example, a man with really wide shoulders may come in and like the side sleeper pillow but needs it to be firmer because he’s a bigger guy,” explains Ms. Wallace. “We’ll tailor the pillow to his specifications until he’s happy with it.”

GET TO SLEEP
Once you’ve purchased your bed and found the right pillow and bed linens, Ms. Wallace goes a step further and offers these tips for getting a good night sleep:

  • Keep your bedroom cool, at a lower temperature than the rest of the house.
  • Your bedroom should be your sleep haven – remove all distractions (electronics) and make the room as dark as it can be.
  • Being in a big city, there’s often a lot of pollution in the air. An air purifier will help you breathe better and sleep better.
  • Routine is important. Try to go to bed and wake up the same time every day – even weekends. Creating good sleep habits makes all the difference.

Buying a quality bed is a long-term investment that pays back. “People won’t think twice about spending $30,000 on a car. And if you live in the city you’re driving it what, a couple hours a week? What about your bed? You’ll not only get a good night sleep every day, but you’ll save money on a chiropractor or massage therapist because your body will be in perfect alignment,” says Ms. Wallace. “Your bed is the one piece of furniture that’s going make a difference in your day tomorrow.”

DID YOU KNOW you can try one of the high quality mattresses from Chicago Luxury Beds for free? If you’re having trouble deciding which tension you’d prefer, CLB will book you a night at the Waldorf Astoria Chicago, where six rooms feature their coveted Vi-Spring mattresses. Once you sleep on the bed, make your decision, return to CLB and purchase your bed, CLB will pay for the hotel stay.

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About Carrie Williams

Carrie Williams is TCW's managing/digital editor. She manages day-to-day editorial operations of the monthly print publication, website and social media outlets, contributes to a variety of feature articles and directs a team of interns, freelance writers and bloggers. In early 2013, she led the redesign of TCWmag.com/restructure of TCW's brand strategy. Her blog, "Carrie On," is a blog of reflection and discovery, discussing how to push through life when you’re handed one too many curveballs. And finally, Ms. Williams is also executive director of the TCW Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit supporting underfunded women's and children's organizations.