Sleepy tee

Grab your lover’s dirty shirt for better night’s rest

Having insomnia? Don’t reach for the medicine cabinet. Dig through the dirty hamper instead. A new study by the psychology department at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver has found that the smell of a lover’s shirt can help improve sleep. The findings show that participants who slept on a pillow covered with a T-shirt previously worn by their partner for 24 hours had an average sleep efficiency improvement of 2 percent—about the same effect as taking a melatonin supplement. The 155 subjects were given two identical shirts to use as pillowcases—one worn by their “romantic partner” and one that was clean or worn by a stranger—and spent one night with each, not being told which was which. Even though their partners weren’t present, researchers surmised that “the mere scent of a partner” might create “a sense of safety, calm and relaxation.”