We spend a lot of time in our bedrooms.
They’re the place we rest our weary heads at the end of a long day, the room where we enjoy cosy lie-ins, and a sanctuary we retreat to when we need some peace and quiet.
But do you prefer your bedroom to be wonderfully messy, covered with clothes and un-made bed sheets? Or do you like a room with 5-star hotel standards, with perfectly ironed sheets and everything in its proper place?
We recently conducted a survey of people across the UK to find out how they like to keep their bedrooms and whether they think a tidy or cluttered bedroom impacts their ability to get a good night’s sleep. Here’s what we discovered.
Tidy vs cluttered
We asked 500 people if they prefer their bedroom to be neat and tidy or messy and cluttered. Overwhelmingly, 61% preferred it tidy. (a)
When we asked why they liked it this way, more than 27% said that having an organised bedroom where everything has its proper place helped them feel more relaxed. (b)
Cleanliness was also an important factor in why people prefer a tidy bedroom. Just over 20% of those surveyed say they find it calming to be in a clean environment, and 13% said even the act of cleaning was relaxing to them. (c)
There may be a physiological reason why we feel calmer in a more organised room. Research has found a potential connection between clutter and our mental health. In one particular study, researchers found that women with more clutter in their homes had higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol than women with less clutter. (1)
But it seems some of us don’t mind a little mess.
More than 38% of those aged between 16 and 24 said they preferred their bedroom messy, compared to just 5% of those aged 55 and above. (d) And more than 32% of those living in the Northwest region said they didn’t mind their bedrooms being untidy, compared to just over 12% of those from the Southeast. (e)
Some people said they like a cluttered bedroom because it makes it more homely and cosy. While others said tidying their room is too tiring, and they would rather save their energy for tasks they find more relaxing. (f)
Does a messy bedroom impact your sleep?
56% of those surveyed say they feel they get a better night’s sleep when their bedroom is neat and tidy, (g) and this figure rose to more than 67% for those aged between 25 and 34. (h).
Could it be that we find clutter too distracting to sleep? It’s well known that our brains can only process a certain number of stimuli at any one time (2), so it makes sense that high levels of clutter could provide too much stimulation, which may not be helpful when we’re trying to unwind and drop off to sleep.
The traditional Chinese practice of Feng Shui also highlights the potential impact clutter can have on the mind. It’s believed that lots of clutter can block the natural flow of energy around a room (3) – which isn’t ideal when we are trying to have a restful snooze.
Ways to de-clutter
Let’s face it, no one’s home will ever be completely clutter-free. But there are a few simple tips, tricks, and storage options you can try to give yourself more space and help your bedroom feel a little more zen.
Clever clothes storage
More than 34% of those surveyed say clothes clutter up their bedroom more than anything else. (i)
If you can’t bear to clear out your wardrobe, don’t worry, plenty of storage solutions are available to help keep your bedroom organised without having to part ways with your favourite outfits.
Investing in wardrobes with additional drawers, such as the Hip Hop 2 Door Hinged Wardrobe or the Esme wardrobe provides you with extra space to store clothes that don't need to be hung in the wardrobe, such as pyjamas, underwear or gym wear.
However, if you have the room and are sick of fighting with your partner over wardrobe space, it may be time for a chest of drawers. We have a wide range of options available to suit any size area, including wider drawers and tallboys.
A place for trinkets and keepsakes
34% of those surveyed said they keep lots of trinkets, photos, and keepsakes in their bedroom. (j) De-cluttering doesn’t mean getting rid of all those wonderful memories. Instead, simply invest in bedroom furniture that allows you to keep these cherished trinkets proudly displayed or safely stored away.
Drawers in bedside tables are a fantastic place to keep smaller items, such as jewellery, books, or journals. You can also utilise the top of the table for displaying treasured photos and precious keepsakes.
A dressing table also offers the ideal place to display or store sentimental trinkets and is the perfect place to keep other day-to-day items, such as make-up, hair products and accessories, which often clutter up our bedroom.
Space for larger items
Ottoman storage boxes look incredibly stylish and are brilliant for storing bulkier items, such as shoes or electronic devices that won’t fit anywhere else. Ottoman boxes can also help free up storage space in your wardrobe or drawers.
If space in your bedroom is limited, utilising underbed storage is a great option. Ottoman beds are ideal if you need a place to store oversized items, such as blankets or extra bedding. Alternatively, divan beds with drawers are fantastic for storing items such as winter clothes, spare towels, or even your laptop.
More than 17% of those surveyed aged between 25 and 34 said their bedroom is mostly cluttered with their kid’s toys. (k)
If your children’s toys are taking over, you may want to explore ways to increase the storage capacity in your child’s room. For example, the Stompa Auburn Wooden Midsleeper makes use of the space beneath the bed, with a pull out desk and handy storage drawers – perfect for storing your children’s toys, shoes, play materials, and books – and it keeps them out of your room!
Whether your bedroom is large or small, we have an extensive collection of bedroom furniture to suit your budget and room size. From dressing tables to ottoman boxes, you’ll find the storage solution you need with us. And if you’re shopping for a new divan bed, you can tailor one to your specific needs with our your bed, your way® service. Choose the style, colour, fabric, and storage options you want for a bed that’s entirely bespoke.
- a)307 of 500 people surveyed answered ‘I prefer my bedroom tidy’ when asked ‘Which, if any, of the following statements below most resonates with you based on your preference for a messy or tidy room?’
- b)136 of 500 people surveyed answered ‘I prefer my bedroom tidy because being organized and having everything in its proper place helps me feel more relaxed’ when asked ‘‘Which, if any, of the following statements below most resonates with you based on your preference for a messy or tidy room?’
- c)104 of 500 people surveyed answered ‘I prefer my bedroom tidy because being in a clean environment makes me feel more relaxed’ when asked ‘‘Which, if any, of the following statements below most resonates with you based on your preference for a messy or tidy room?’ and 67 of 500 people surveyed answered ‘I prefer my bedroom tidy because I find cleaning a relaxing task’ when asked the same question.
- d)25 of 65 adults surveyed aged between 16 and 24 answered ‘I prefer my bedroom messy’ compared to 10 of 193 adults surveyed aged 55 and over, when asked ‘Which, if any, of the following statements below most resonates with you based on your preference for a messy or tidy room?’
- e)18 of 55 people surveyed from North West of England answered ‘I prefer my bedroom messy’ when asked Which, if any, of the following statements below most resonates with you based on your preference for a messy or tidy room?’ compared to 9 of 70 people surveyed from the Southeast of England who gave the same response.
- f)30 of 500 people surveyed answered ‘I prefer my bedroom messy because I think a bit of clutter makes it more homely and cosey’ and 36 of 500 people surveyed answered ‘I prefer my bedroom messy, because tidying is tiring and I’d rather save that energy for doing other tasks that relax me’ when asked Which, if any, of the following statements below most resonates with you based on your preference for a messy or tidy room?’
- g)284 of 500 people surveyed answered ‘agree’ when asked ‘How much, if at all, do you agree or disagree with the following statement, I think I get a better sleep if my bedroom is neat and tidy.’
- h)59 of 87 people surveyed aged between 25 and 34 answered ‘agree’ when asked ‘How much, if at all, do you agree or disagree with the following statement, I think I get a better sleep if my bedroom is neat and tidy.’
- i)172 of 500 people surveyed answered ‘clothes’ when asked ‘What, if anything, clutters up your bedroom the most?’
- j)174 of 500 surveyed answered ‘yes’ when asked ‘Do you have a lot of trinkets and belongings in your room, such as photos, keepsakes, etc?’
- k)15 of 87 people surveyed aged between 24 and 34 answered ‘kids toys’ when asked ‘What, if anything, clutters up your bedroom the most?’
- 1)No Place Like Home: Home Tours Correlate With Daily Patterns of Mood and Cortisol - Darby E. Saxbe, Rena Repetti, 2010 (sagepub.com)
- 2)Interactions of Top-Down and Bottom-Up Mechanisms in Human Visual Cortex | Journal of Neuroscience (jneurosci.org)
- 3)Using Feng Shui for Your Mental Health (verywellmind.com)