Space engineering has revolutionized textiles, but are these newfangled threads better than tried and true natural fabrics? “Wicking” technology describes fabric ability to funnel moisture away from our skin.
Combined with fiber types and weaving techniques that create incredibly soft and lightweight materials, NASA patents have taken the retail clothing market by storm. The only downside: they are all synthetics.
Just as plastic food containers can give off harmful chemicals, some modern fabrics can also have toxic side effects.
When we sweat our pores open and though moisture is being released to regulate temperature, our skin and respiratory systems are also absorbing chemical agents and microfibers from our environment.
Sleeping naked has many benefits acknowledged by real, scientific research. Sleeping free of elastic bands, buttons that press into your skin or long twisting garments has clear benefits for your circulation.
Your body doesn’t need to sweat as much to lower your core temperature and has an easier time creating its ideal microclimate between the sheets.
Though I do not advocate sleep streaking, particularly this time of year, if you haven’t tried sleeping “au naturale” I urge you to do so. You might be pleasantly surprised by the sense of freedom you will experience.
If it just feels odd, no worries. Sleeping naked will provide a new perspective when it comes to the quality of bed linens though. It is nobody’s business but our own what we choose to wear to bed so why not experiment?
The sweat factor
We have all woken up at one time or another sweaty. Famous zoologist Desmond Morris dubbed us “naked apes”, and with no fur for insulation, being sweaty has become part of sleeping for humans.
3% of the population suffer from night sweats, or sleep hyperhidrosis. The condition causes excessive sweating during sleep, unrelated to an overheated environment.
But even if you don’t suffer from night sweats, unless you relish the idea of drenched sheets and soggy sleepwear, you’re best to avoid fabrics that increase your body temperature at night.
Lingerie may be sold to us as a hallmark of feminine identity but the media who promotes these images don’t care that these fabrics may make you sweat like a hog during sex and sleep.
Bottom line is, sleepwear that increases your temperature forces your body to compensate by sweating more. That can lead to dehydration. Contact with damp material could also increase myoskeletal discomfort and skin irritation.
The most important pajama choice factors are:
Health – fiber content, weave and thickness for optimum temperature regulation and no tight elastic. (I would like to add sustainability here but that is up to the individual.)
Comfort – fit and feel that inspires relaxation.
Fun – your PJs (or lack of) should reflect your unique personality.
What you wear to bed is more important than you think. Don’t be afraid to get your groove on for sex using whatever costumes improve the experience, but when it is time for “night night” show your body and the environment some love.
Victoria Andre King is a writer, teacher and mom, not necessarily in that order. Originally from California she lived and worked in Greece for more than 20 years. A freelance writer, editor and translator of fiction and non-fiction, a credited screenwriter and production manager.