5 Bed-Making Mistakes That Are Ruining Your Good Night's Sleep — And What to Do Instead

Who would have thought making your bed first thing in the morning would be a problem? Well, there may be a few things you're doing wrong when it comes to bed making — according to this cleaning expert

striped bed sheets on bed
(Image credit: Quince)

Bedmaking is an essential part of my everyday routine. I wake up at 7am, jump or drag myself out of bed and find myself automatically making my side of the bed — while my husband snoozes away on the other side. For me, making the bed gives me a sense of accomplishment and helps me kick start my productivity mindset for the day.

'Making your bed every day can give you an easy first task to accomplish for the day,' says Ken Doty COO and Cleaning Expert at The Maids. 'If you're able to knock out a small accomplishment early, that can snowball towards productivity for the rest of the day. Taking care of the little things in life does matter greatly'.

Words that I couldn't agree with more. However, it was only quite recently I came to realize that I may be making my bed wrong. So, we spoke to an expert to see what bed making mistakes many of us have fallen into and how to style a bed the right way.

What are the most common mistakes when making your bed?

An olive green bedroom with neatly made bed

(Image credit: Victoria Erdelevskaya / Heals)

Making your bed the right way isn't just about good looks, it's about hygiene, the joy of tidiness and even the secret to sleeping better. 'A neat and tidy bedroom can lower stress and improve your mood. It's hard to feel relaxed and serene when everything is a mess in your bedroom,' Ken Doty COO and Cleaning Expert at The Maids tells us.

If you want a stress-free bedroom — here are a few bed-making mistakes you need to avoid.

1. Making your bed too early

A neutral bedroom with light and airy bed sheets

(Image credit: Stephen Kent Johnson. Design: David Scott Interiors)

You might think a quickly made bed makes for a relaxing bedroom, but you should wait a while before making your bed, cleaning expert Ken tells us. 'While making your bed is essential for a productive day, you shouldn't make your bed immediately after waking up',' Ken says.

This is due to overnight sweating which can cause your sheets to become slightly damp, this can therefore be a breeding ground for bacteria. He says the best fix for this would be to 'let your sheets dry out for an hour or two before making the move to adjust your sheets'.

2. Not changing your sheets every week

Messy White Sheet On Bed

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Whether it's linen or cotton sheets, you need to ensure you're changing your sheets every week for a clean and fresh feel.

'Waiting too long to change your sheets allows for that bacteria and dirt to fester, which can negatively impact sleep in the long-term as your sheets may get sticky or just feel unclean,' says Ken. To avoid this from happening the expert says you should stick to a weekly cleaning regimen as this will keep your bed looking clean and healthy.

However, Ken advises that if you do have pets, cleaning and changing your bed sheets twice a week may be more suitable.

Ken Doty

Ken Doty joined The Maids International in July 2013 as Vice President of Business Intelligence, and was promoted to Chief Information Officer in February 2020. He is experienced in business intelligence with over 20 years of experience in consulting and information technology.

3. Not using a mattress cover

Cropped view of woman hand is holding zipper or opened fastener, changing protective cover on the mattress

(Image credit: Getty Images)

According to the expert, another bed making mistake people often make is not using a mattress cover. Finding the best mattress protector will essentially keep your mattress looking fresh and brand new — so be sure not to skip this step!

Ken explains that 'while many may consider a mattress protector may sound unnecessary, it's very important to keeping those skin issues and allergies away'.

Using a mattress cover will give you a comfortable 'surface for your sheets and elevate your sleeping experience,' Ken adds.

4. Neglecting Your Mattress


(Image credit: Zinus)

Ken says you need to clean a mattress often in order to have the best sleep experience. 'Although mattress cleaning isn't something you can do daily, making sure you're staying on top of it can help with allergy symptoms, eliminating bed bugs and a cleaner sleeping experience,' he says.

The expert says making and cleaning what is on top of your bed is a waste of time if your mattress is not in good health. To give it a good reset, Ken recommends using a natural deodorizer, baking soda and a steam cleaner to help remove stains and trapped bacteria, and make your bed more comfortable overall.

5. Incorrect Sheet Layering

modern and netural bedroom with bed made with Culitver linen sheets

(Image credit: Cultiver)

Learning how to layer your bedding sets is an important part of getting the best out of the way your bedroom looks and feels. Ken says a mistake that people often make is that they 'can have too many or too little sheets on their mattress'.

He continues: 'If you live in a hotter environment, you can remove your duvet and just use a top sheet over your mattress. For someone who gets cold at night, add your duvet in with a top sheet and your big blanket'.

Improper layering of your blanket can lead to poor sleep, as well as a disorganized bed.


What should you do instead?

Neutral bed room

(Image credit: Clare)

From tricks to make bedding fluffier, to arranging pillows on a bed — what is the best method of making a bed? Well, Ken says there are a few steps you can follow to create a calm and serene space for sleep. Here are some of his tips and tricks:

1. Make sure you clean any clutter you have on your bed and strip to the fitted sheet.
2. Ensure the fitted sheet is tucked in properly and is even.
3. Replace the top sheet and let it hand off evenly on the sides and bottom of your bed.
4. Place the sheet pattern side down and fold over your blanket to ensure the pattern is front and center.
5. Tuck the bottom sheet under your mattress neatly or if you wish, you can just let it hang.
6. Place comforter or blanket on top and make sure it covers the exposed sheet.
7. Replace your blanket and ensure it's evenly distributed on the sides and foot of the bed.
8. Fold the bedcover and top sheet to create a neat and tidy appearance.
9. Last, but not least, smooth out any wrinkles with your hand, fluff pillows, and arrange them at the top of the bed.

And voilà! There you have it, you got yourself a neat bed to provide you with the best early or late night slumber.

Advice & Gardens Editor

Faiza is the Advice & Gardens Editor at Livingetc. She previously worked for The Independent as a News Feature Writer, where she wrote articles on lifestyle, entertainment, news and more. She also worked as an Audience Editor for the newspaper for over two years. Spending a few years in the newsroom, Faiza also previously worked for Sky News as an SEO reporter, where she produced stories based on trending topics. Lifestyle and Interior design is a space Faiza has been interested in for quite some time and as she continues to grow in the field, she will be diving into an interior design course to further her skills. Faiza has a background in SEO, social media and reporting. Her passion for writing goes beyond her work as she loves all things poetry and creative writing.