Style Tip: Is Your Sleepwear a Dream or Nightmare?

Ginger Burr
Ginger Burr

Do you really think about what you wear to bed or are you so ready to crawl under the covers by the time you get undressed that you throw on the nearest soft thing and jump into bed? I have found that sleepwear tends to be one of those wardrobe concerns that doesn't really register until you take a good, long look at what you are wearing for those eight (seven? six?) hours a day.

Maybe it's perfect and you chose it with intention, or maybe it's the nearest thing that is frayed and faded but serves the purpose, so to speak. After a long day, we might not be too picky about what we put on after a long day and our bed is calling sweetly. As long as it's cozy on it goes.

So, let's think about it now. What do you sleep in (provided you sleep in anything)? Do you give it much thought or do you throw on whatever is handy and clean? Believe me, I totally understand that nowhere is comfort more important than when you are sleeping. Would you agree? If you've ever been annoyed in the night by sleepwear that is binding, scratchy, stiff or aggravating in some way then you know what I mean.

It's also true that very few people see you in your nightwear, so some of you might say who cares. But as you know, it's first and foremost about how you feel in what you wear. Not only that but it's another way of honoring yourself and celebrating your own natural beauty.

Will we all agree on what is beautiful and comfortable to sleep in? I doubt it. Just one peek in the stores and you'll see that the choices are quite extensive.

Maybe I'm alone in this (although I doubt it) but what I sleep in is very important to me both in terms of my physical comfort and my esthetic delight. I'm a big believer in surrounding yourself in beauty (your personal definition of beauty) as much as possible and what could be sweeter than to envelop yourself in something beautiful while you rejuvenate through sleep?

I love nightgowns. I want beautiful, elegant, soft, pretty nightgowns. Not babydolls and not long sleeved flannel gowns. I'm sure there are people who love both of those but I prefer flowing, sleeveless, knee length or long (depending on the season) nightgowns. You wouldn't think they would be so hard to find but it seems that everyone is wearing pajamas. But, here's the important part, I don't give up. I don't settle for something I don't love wearing. I keep looking and wear what I have in the meantime.

What about you? Are your jammies beautiful? Or, are you stuck in a sleepwear rut? Are you happy (both physically and esthetically) with what you have? In fact, have you recently taken a good long look at what you do wear to bed? Do you love it? If not, don't despair, let's look at some options to open up new possibilities.

Four things to consider when you are selecting your sleepwear:

1. Comfort: Obviously, you don't want anything binding or stiff. It's also important to be wary of elastics or details that might be uncomfortable. For instance, I bought a beautiful nightgown that had adjustable straps in the back. It seemed like a great idea when I bought it but the clip that made it adjustable kept hitting my shoulder blade and I'd wake up with a dent in my back! Not exactly cozy. I also once bought a nightgown that had lace around the neckline. I didn't realize until after the first night that the lace was stiff and scratchy. That was the last time I wore that nightgown!

2. Fabric: This is definitely a personal preference. Cotton is one of the most popular because it's a natural fiber and breathes. It's soft and comfortable and cool in the summer (or if you experience hot flashes any time of the year). Plus, it's machine washable. There are also special moisture-wicking fabrics that work well for those who get too hot when they sleep. Flannel has the added advantage of breathing and keeping you warm but obviously isn't a good choice in the summer (unless you sleep in heavy duty air conditioning). I like the manmade fibers in the winter because they are warm and soft. So, there is something for everyone.

3. Personality: Do you feel like yourself when you wear your pj's or like an imposter? When I put on a babydoll nightgown I don't feel even remotely sexy (although judging by most lingerie stores, you'd think this was the most alluring choice). Instead, I feel like I'm about 12 years old - not exactly the pretty look or feel I'm going for. And, boy shorts with a little t-shirt don't do it for me either. Both of those are perfectly acceptable choices for sleeping, and many women wear them. They just don't resonate with me. It's important that you choose a style that you love and makes you feel authentically you.

4. Care Instructions: While this is not usually a big problem with sleepwear, it is important to check to be sure the garment is not so delicate or poorly made that one wash will do it in.

Here are a few fun options I found on-line:

Are you, like me, a nightgown kind of gal? Here are some new ones I'm eyeing: This one is elegant and looks soft and cozy and, yay, it's not a pastel. Click here for more information.

How fun is this one for someone who wants something that makes a bit more of a statement! Click here for more information.

And, in the summer when it's hot (we don't have air conditioning in our house), cotton is great because it doesn't stick to you. How cute is this one (click here for more information):

What if you prefer pajamas? Sometimes I walk through the lingerie department and feel like I'm in the men's pajama section. Some women really look totally fabulous in these and look amazing. If that's true, go for it. Here's a great pair which a lot of choices in fabric colors and patterns (click here for more information):

If you like something a little more feminine and frilly, try this one in a pretty color. It looks so soft and yummy (click here for more information):

And, I just couldn't resist showing you this one (click here for more information):

So, whether you want to feel down-to-earth, cozy, sexy, sweet or a little exotic, and no matter what your budget, there's something out there for everyone. The important thing is that you love what you wear even when it's in the middle of the night - your dreams will be sweeter!

This article was written by Ginger Burr. To get more great advice from Diva Toolbox Media Diva Ginger Burr, visit her website at: