The 10 Best Bedroom Plants That Promote Sleep (Approved By Science)

Did you know that by placing a certain kind of indoor plant in your bedroom you can sleep better? Here are the best bedroom plants science says promotes sleep.

Updated: May 31, 2020

The thought of having a plant in your bedroom that magically sucks out the bad and fills the air with good, feels like something straight out of a sci-fi movie.

But it’s actually true.

You can actually buy plants for a bedroom of any size that purify the air and help you sleep a lot quicker.

Today I’m going to show you the best bedroom plants that are not only cost effective, but also easy to maintain so you don’t have to spend a small fortune or several hours per day keeping them alive.

Let’s dive in.

Lavender

Photo of a Lavender plant.

Lavender is one of the best-researched plants when it comes to regulating sleep and reducing anxiety levels. Many studies have found that the smell of lavender is enough to reduce crying in babies, increase REM sleep, and generally improve overall sleep health

While you can get the same benefits from oils and scented products, why not go directly to the source?

Lavender is a hardy, easy-to-grow plant that should find a place in your bedroom. In addition to looking pretty and smelling great, you can borrow some of your bedroom lavender for the kitchen, where you can use it as a fantastic addition to your baked goods. 


Aloe Vera

Photo of an Aloe Vera plant.

All plants produce oxygen during the day, but aloe vera is one of several plants that emit oxygen even at night. Increased levels of oxygen can promote relaxed sleep and will alleviate concerns about the health implications of sleeping with plants.

One of the most significant benefits of aloe vera is that it’s practically impossible to kill. The plant tolerates neglect very well, and requires minimal watering at the best of times.

It also grows and reproduces quickly, so if you buy one, you’ll quickly have enough for your entire home, as well as an excellent present for friends and family.

Aloe vera is also a common ingredient found in topical wound-healing gels and skincare products. The gel produced by aloe vera leaves has antioxidant properties that make it an excellent healing agent for sunburns. 

Finally, if you’re feeling adventurous, you can make some aloe vera juice, which contains several essential nutrients and is one of the few plant-based sources of vitamin B-12.


Chamomile

Photo of a Chamomile flower.

Often used as a calming tea, chamomile also makes an excellent bedroom plant. The main benefits of chamomile come from the terpenoids and flavonoids found in the flowering parts of the plant, but many people also find the smell of the plant soothing as well.

Chamomile is a hardy plant that doesn’t need a lot of sun or water once established. It’s drought-tolerant, which means that you can neglect it for a while with few ill effects.

The smell of chamomile can also keep pests away, which is why it’s often a companion plant in vegetable gardens. 


Spider Plant

Photo of a Spider plant.

Spider plants are excellent air purifiers and can remove up to 90% of formaldehyde found in the air. If you use lots of adhesives, grout, or fillers that produce formaldehyde, you may appreciate having the plant in your home to lessen its impact.

Spider plants are incredibly hardy and tolerate many different soil and light conditions. They make excellent bedroom or bathroom plants and don’t need a lot of attention to thrive. 

Spider plants regularly reproduce in the spring, developing small spiderettes that hang off the mother plant. Rooting these spiderettes is relatively easy and hassle-free, making them an excellent gift for family and friends. 


Snake Plant

Photo of a Snake plant.

The snake plant, or mother-in-law’s tongue, is a common household plant in most homes. It’s robust, pretty and can tolerate a wide variety of conditions. What makes this a great plant is that it produces oxygen at night as well during the day, which promotes deep and restful sleep.

The snake plant is also an excellent air purifier and can remove many hazardous chemicals, including benzenes that can otherwise contribute to cancer development in humans. 


Jasmine

Photo of a Jasmine flower.

Jasmine is an easy-to-cultivate plant that produces delicate white flowers and a heady, distinctive scent. Various studies on jasmine essential oils show that they work on the GABA receptors in the brain, which are responsible for mood regulation.


English Ivy

Photo of English Ivy plant.

English ivy is another plant that NASA used in its air purification study that can help you to fall asleep. At a 2005 ACAAI meeting, researchers examined the validity of English ivy’s air-purifying properties, showing that it can remove 78% of airborne mold in 12 hours.

As mold is one of the primary contributors to asthma attacks, placing English ivy in your bedroom can help control allergies and lessen the impact of asthma. 

The main drawback of English ivy is that it’s toxic when ingested, making it unsuitable for homes with small children or pets.

It’s also a very quick-growing plant, and if planted outside, needs to be maintained regularly. Even as a potted plant in your bedroom, it requires more maintenance than many other household plants.


Golden Pothos

Photo of Golden Pothos plant.

Golden pothos is a great-looking plant that offers several health benefits as well. It was part of NASA’s host of air-purifying plants, so it can significantly contribute to the quality of your indoor air. 

Golden pothos is simple to take care of, especially if you place it in an indirectly sunny spot. It doesn’t require a lot of watering but does need regular trimming to stop it from growing out of control.

Like English ivy, golden pothos is mildly toxic, so it’s a good idea to keep it away from children and pets.  


Chinese Evergreen

Photo of Chinese Evergreen plant.

Chinese evergreens are commonly used in Asia to purify the air in small rooms. These plants work best when placed by a window, where they can purify any incoming air, removing pollutants such as benzene, toluene, xylene, and formaldehyde.

Chinese evergreens are slow-growing plants that prefer low light and don’t need a lot of watering. While they prefer humid areas, they can handle dry air just as well, with minimal browning at the end of the tips.


Peace Lily

Photo of Peace Lily plant.

In addition to being fantastic air purifiers, the peace lily is also a natural humidifier. If you live in a dry area, you may suffer from dry sinus issues that prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep.

Using a humidifying plant like a peace lily can add an extra layer of comfort to your bedroom, promoting better sleep and taking care of air quality.


Benefits of Having Plants in Your Bedroom

Many people believe that having plants in your bedroom can be harmful to your health. This belief probably stems from the fact that plants produce carbon dioxide and use up oxygen at night.

Illustration of the benefits of using the best bedroom plants.

While this is true, the impact of a plant on oxygen and carbon dioxide levels is significantly smaller than that of a sleeping partner or pet. On the contrary, indoor plants offer several benefits in the bedroom:

  • Some fragrant plants, such as jasmine and lavender, give off smells that can improve sleep function and mood.
  • Even non-fragrant plants can have a beneficial impact on health, as demonstrated by a Kansas State University study. This study found that having plants in hospital rooms improved the outcomes of post-surgical patients, compared to patients without plants in their rooms.
  • If you live in a dry area, you may appreciate the humidifying effect that some plants have. Several plants can raise the moisture level in a room by as much as 5%, which can lessen nose and throat irritation due to dry air.
  • There is a growing body of evidence to suggest that plants are excellent air purifiers. Several studies show that plants can purify various toxic chemicals, such as formaldehyde, from the air. NASA even recommends using plants in a closed system as a method for air purification.

While some of the best bedroom plants will never replace modern air filters as the best way to purify the air, they’re a useful and pretty complement to a modern air conditioning unit.

If you sleep with your windows and doors closed, you’ll see more of the benefit of having air purifying plants that can help improve your air quality overnight. 

What are some pet-friendly plants for your bedroom?

Most pet owners know that many common houseplants can be toxic to pets. If you want to get the benefits of bedroom plants for better sleep, but don’t want to risk the health of your pet, stick to the following pet-friendly plants:

  • Boston ferns
  • Spider plant
  • African violet
  • Money tree
  • Indoor palms
  • Tradescantia pallida, also known as the purple-heart or purple queen

Are there any side effects of sleeping with plants?

Not really. Unless you have allergies to pollen or find the fragrance of individual plants overwhelming, you shouldn’t experience any health issues relating to sleeping with plants in the bedroom.

Many people are concerned about the fact that plants consume oxygen and emit carbon dioxide at night, which may deplete the amount of oxygen in the bedroom.

While it’s true that plants consume oxygen and emit carbon dioxide at night, the amount is far too small to produce any harmful effects on humans. So you should only see positives like a better sleep.

Where should I place each plant?

When determining the optimal placement for plants in your bedroom, consider each plant’s preferences. Some prefer shady areas, while others need a lot of sun to thrive. Treat your bedroom space as a garden and find the best position, pot, and soil type for each plant. 

Bedrooms with low or indirect light should consider plants like peace lily, philodendron, and the spider plant. Bright bedrooms encourage the growth of aloe vera, pothos, and scented geranium. 

How to Choose the Best Plants for Your Bedroom

With such a variety of plants that can promote better sleep, you’ll never lack for choice of what to put in your bedroom. Ultimately, the best plants for your bedroom are those that fit in best with your needs. 

When choosing a bedroom plant, you may want to consider:

  • Ease of care (do they require a bunch of time and energy to keep alive)
  • The plant’s light preferences (can it survive with or without indirect light)
  • The humidity level of your room (is it super hot or cold?)
  • How well the plant fits with your décor (some bedroom plants are a little on the ugly side)

If you don’t have a green thumb, try to stick to plants that require minimal care. Many of the best bedroom plants on our list don’t need a lot of watering or maintenance. As long as you choose your bedroom plants with care, they’ll thrive for years.