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How to build your own sleep playlist

To celebrate World Sleep Day, a day made to raise awareness on the importance of sleep, the Eva team wanted to help you with a sleep problem everyone has faced before…

We’ve all been there. You’ve been yawning all day, yearning for bedtime when you can just curl up and switch off. Finally the moment comes, your head hits the pillow and… you’re wide awake. You consider finally starting that book that’s been on the bedside table for a painfully long time. But reading would require turning on the light, which could be counterproductive. It’s time to listen to something to send you into a slumber. 

We all know the classic options: white noise, ASMR of crinkling chip packets, or a 10-hour loop of rain sounds on Youtube. But these aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, and even if they are they don’t always do the trick. 

Enter: sleep playlists. Listening to music can boost levels of serotonin - the neurotransmitter that increases happiness, but also regulates sleep. 

There are countless sleep playlists out there; Spotify has even released one that’s scientifically engineered to induce sleep. Of course, everybody’s taste in music is different, so it makes sense that your sleep playlist should be tailored to you. That’s why we’re here to help you craft your own personalised sleep playlist.

Without further ado, here are the six things to include in the playlist of your dreams.

1. Slow Love Songs

Like a warm hug, love songs are soothing, calming and not to mention beautiful to listen to. They may be the most obvious of the lot, but they cannot be skipped.

Our hot tip: pick love songs with softer drums, or even no drums at all. Focus on songs with more piano or strings than percussion. 

Our suggestions for slow love songs:

  • Texas Sun - Khruangbin
  • Promise - Ben Howard
  • For You - Tracy Chapman
  • Don’t delete the kisses - Wolf Alice

2. Chill songs

If you’re less of a romantic and would rather drift off to heavy metal than a love ballad, chill songs are for you. Chill songs tend to be less deep, broader in topic and lighter than love songs so they help your mind switch off moe easily. Go for slow rhythms, acoustic instruments and gentle melodies. Think lying under a tree on a warm day. 

Our suggestions for chill songs:

  • Chances - The Strokes
  • Holocene - Bon Iver
  • Idée Fixe - Methyl Ethel
  • Roy’s Tune - Fontaines DC

3. Songs in other languages

Songs in other languages can also help in switching off your mind. When you don’t understand the lyrics, it eliminates the opportunity to over-analyse them. You aren’t caught up in their meaning, allowing only the musicality of the words to reach you. Relaxation achieved.

Our suggestions for songs in foreign languages:

  • La Bohème - Charles Aznavour
  • Dwa Serduszka - Joanna Kulig
  • Siempre me quedará - Bebe

4. Soft instrumental tracks

Following on the same theme as before, instrumental tracks have no lyrics so it’s a lot easier to switch off. They are calming and keep a rhythm. Like counting sheep, but a little more interesting.

Our suggestions for soft instrumental tracks:

  • Slow Burn - Autograf
  • Flatiron - Suzanne Kraft
  • TOBIUME - Susumu Yokota

5. Classical music

If you’ve ever been on hold to the electricity company for three hours you may be slightly triggered by this one. While it often gets a bad rap thanks to hold music, classical music is actually proven to improve sleep quality and calm the nervous system.

We recommend choosing something soft and ensuring you listen to it prior to check that it’s soft all the way through, as some classical music can get pretty intense at the end!

Our suggestions for classical music:

  • Michigan 7 - Kirill Richter
  • JIN - Martin Kohlstedt
  • Vivaldi Variation (Piano for concerto for string in G minor) - Antonio Vivaldi
  • Melting Waltz - Abel Korzeniowski

6. Opera

Hear us out. It can actually be good. Like classical music, opera can be soothing and beautiful, not to mention have benefits such as reduced stress and lower blood pressure. If opera music isn’t in your regular rotation, the suggestions below are good for entry-level listeners. 

Our suggestions for opera songs:

  • Sposa Son Disprezzata - Cecilia Bartoli
  • Alla se me ponga el sol à 4 - Huelgas Ensemble 
  • Funeral Canticle - Academy of Ancient Music

With these 6 key ingredients guiding you, and choosing your own music to suit your taste, you’ll have a personalised sleep playlist perfected to you. 

Many listening apps now have a sleep timer, so that the audio stops playing after a certain amount of time. This is perfect for sleep playlists and audiobooks as you can just lie back and fall asleep. If you’re very awake, we recommend setting it for 30 minutes. Or if you just need a nudge to fall asleep, then 15 minutes is probably ideal - trust us, your playlist is going to be that good!

We recommend listening to your sleep playlist without headphones, to avoid waking up with a missing Airpod or tangled wires. With the Eva Timber Bed Frame you can place your phone in the in-built device holder so you don’t wake up with the imprint of your phone pressed into your face. You can relax completely and fall asleep listening to your new personal sleep playlist.  

Have fun curating your playlist! To help you get started, check out our recommended songs for deep sleep on our Eva Sleep Playlist

Happy World Sleep Day!