The exact temperature you should sleep at to get a good night’s sleep

Takeaway: Set your thermostat to about 65ºF (18.5ºC) when you sleep, and think of your bedroom as a cave: cool, dark, and quiet.

Estimated Reading Time: 1 minutes, 57s.

Cute sleeping cat

My girlfriend and I share a bed, but our sleeping preferences could not be more different. I like a few, thin sheets, and she likes ten heavy blankets piled on top of one another. She likes a bit of light in the room, and I like it pitch black. She likes the room to be as hot as possible, while I like the room to be slightly cool.

Among those variables, the room temperature sticks out the most to me, because it has affected our sleep so much. That motived me to do some research to ask: what’s the exact temperature we should set the thermostat to in order to get a good night’s sleep?

Unfortunately, unlike there is with your office thermostat, there are no definitive answers out there. But over the last couple of weeks I’ve dug deep into the topic, and here are a few suggestions I uncovered for setting your thermostat to get a good night’s sleep:

  • The sleeping temperature recommended by every study I found differed, but most studies recommended setting your thermostat to about 65ºF (18.5ºC).1
  • Temperatures below 54ºF and above 75ºF have been shown to be disruptive to your sleep.2
  • Before you go to sleep, your body’s internal temperature drops, which “promotes deep continuous sleep”. Setting your thermostat to around 65º will help your body get to that temperature faster, which will let you fall asleep faster, and sleep better. This is why exercising or eating a large meal close to bedtime disrupts your sleep: both activities raise your body’s core temperature.3
  • Multiple studies have found that participants with insomnia has significantly better sleep when they slept in a cooler room.
  • The American Academy of Sleep Medicine suggests “thinking of a bedroom as a cave: It should cool, quiet, and dark.”4
  • Everyone’s ideal sleeping temperature is different, and what’s comfortable for you might not be comfortable for someone else. The key is to keep your bedroom at a “thermally neutral” temperature. According to Sleep Number, “thermally neutral means that our body doesn’t have to do anything to create heat (shiver) or shed heat (sweat) to compensate for being too cold or warm.”5

For the last couple of months I’ve been diving deep into experimenting with my sleep. I promise I’ll share more lessons learned as the weeks roll on!


  1. Sources: http://www.sleepfoundation.org/article/how-sleep-works/the-sleep-environment; http://www.sleepnumber.com/eng/individualNeeds/sleepTemperature.cfm; http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/features/cant-sleep-adjust-the-temperature; http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-christopher-winter/best-temperature-for-sleep_b_3705049.html 

  2. Source: http://https://sleepfoundation.org/sleep-news/how-sleep-comfortably-through-hot-summer-nights 

  3. Source: http://www.sleepnumber.com/eng/individualNeeds/sleepTemperature.cfm 

  4. Source: http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/features/cant-sleep-adjust-the-temperature 

  5. Source: http://www.sleepnumber.com/eng/individualNeeds/sleepTemperature.cfm 

  • Tomas

    I personally sleep a lot better with a cooler room. During Summer when I sleep with less covers on my bed and it is warmer than I would like, I typically wake feeling much less refreshed than the Winter months.

  • Tomas

    I personally sleep a lot better with a cooler room. During Summer when I sleep with less covers on my bed and it is warmer than I would like, I typically wake feeling much less refreshed than the Winter months.

  • Hi Chris,

    This was a really interesting post and as you’ve shown, people have different temperatures for ideal sleeping. The point you made about keeping our rooms thermally neutral makes perfect sense. When we don’t need to create heat, or need to lose it, then this would suggest ideal sleeping temperature conditions.

    Thank you.

  • Hi Chris,

    This was a really interesting post and as you’ve shown, people have different temperatures for ideal sleeping. The point you made about keeping our rooms thermally neutral makes perfect sense. When we don’t need to create heat, or need to lose it, then this would suggest ideal sleeping temperature conditions.

    Thank you.

  • A cave pretty much describes how I sleep haha. I have to have my tower fan on or else I start to get too hot. I never understood how some people can sleep comfortably in the heat.

    • Me either.. everyone’s different I guess! haha

  • A cave pretty much describes how I sleep haha. I have to have my tower fan on or else I start to get too hot. I never understood how some people can sleep comfortably in the heat.

    • Me either.. everyone’s different I guess! haha

  • José Maria Vega Fernandez

    Good article!
    Excuseme my English.
    Ihad had slepping with a temp of 10 C for 15 days last time, and suffer different types of anomalies , like cold, fever, etc. and now I m thinking : Joe, put your brain to work, man!
    Thanks for this information.

  • José Maria Vega Fernandez

    Good article!
    Excuseme my English.
    Ihad had slepping with a temp of 10 C for 15 days last time, and suffer different types of anomalies , like cold, fever, etc. and now I m thinking : Joe, put your brain to work, man!
    Thanks for this information.

  • Sleeping with my husband and kids is one of the best sleep for me. But I love sleeping having a cold temperature too :)

  • Loon Bc

    I googled “best sleeping tem” and came to this site. I am always too warm and so I like a very cool bedroom best. About 15C = 59F is usually perfect, because then I can have a thin down-duvet as cover and feel more cosy that way. The windows need to be open also. My husband used to be even slightly warmer. Now I live in an apartment and have a hard time getting my bedroom cool enough. Even with the AC on it doesn’t get lower than 18C . That is ok if I am very tired, so I end up going to bed very late . It isn’t easy ! If you are cold , you can put something on , but what do you do if you are too warm? I don’t even like going to friend’s houses , as it is usually uncomfortably hot. On the other hand I don’t get sick and I attribute this to my body-heat. When everyone is sniffling and sneezing around me , I don’t . ……..and I don’t need sweaters !

  • I freeze at anything under 72F, and I have an ecobee thermostat with remote sensor

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