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Is it healthier to sleep naked or in pyjamas?

Evening Standard logo Evening Standard 12/10/2017 Harriet Pavey

© Provided by Evening Standard Limited What do you wear in bed?

If it’s not a question you’re comfortable answering, then you probably wear nothing at all. Not all of us hit the sack swaddled in silk, but if you sleep naked then you’re probably in the minority.

In fact, about 70 per cent of UK adults wear something to bed. Whether that’s a set of pyjamas (the choice of 37 per cent of Britons), underwear (23 per cent) or some kind of shorts and t-shirt combination (19 per cent), most of us seem to prefer sleeping clothed.

But if you’re not sleeping in your birthday suit, you could be missing out on some serious health benefits. Not only will you save money on pyjamas, but your sleep quality and even your reproductive health could be improved by catching Zs in the nude.

Here’s how sleeping naked can actually be better for you:

Regulated body temperature

Sleeping naked automatically keeps your body cooler, making it easier to sleep. According to the Sleep Council, if you are too hot in bed then your core temperature will struggle to fall, meaning you won’t trigger your “sleep mechanism”. During sleep, your body temperature falls naturally after a few hours – wearing warm PJs will disrupt this process.

Healthier sex organs

Wearing PJs increases the chances of your genital area getting sweaty, especially in summer. If you wear tight underwear in a warm bed, you could be encouraging opportunistic infections such as yeast that thrive in dark, sweaty crevices. If you want to avoid an unpleasant case of thrush, it’s better to wear nothing at all.

Improved sex life

It’s rather self-explanatory, but sleeping naked is a great way to feel closer to your partner. Skin-on-skin contact helps release happy hormone oxytocin, and sex is certainly easier when your clothes are already off.

Fertility boost

Men who don’t wear underwear at night may be increasing the quality of their sperm, according to a study in Andrology. Data from about 500 men in the US showed that those who wore boxers during the day and nothing at night had a 25 per cent lower risk of DNA fragmentation in their sperm than those who wore tight pants all the time. 

Clearer skin

Shedding clothes that you’ve been wearing all day gives your skin a chance to breathe. If you suffer from body acne, eczema or any other minor skin condition, sleeping naked gets that all-important oxygen to problem areas. It will also give your skin a break from the irritation of rubbing clothes.


Pyjama sets are often made with elastic waistbands or ankle cuffs, which may leave you with red marks in the morning. Keep the blood flowing around your body by avoiding these.


Let go of the thick, heavy pyjamas and let your body breathe in its most natural state. If you want your best night's sleep, bare is better.

Related: 25 things you need to know about sleep (provided by Reader's Digest)


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