Sharing a bed with your partner can be sweet and cozy. But if you’re not compatible bedmates, it’s more frustrating than anything else. Your sleep suffers and resentment toward your partner can build.
A simple change to the way we make our beds — inspired by a common Scandinavian practice — could be the key to a better night’s sleep. Many folks in countries like Sweden, Denmark and Norway and in other parts of Europe use a two-duvet system. So instead of sharing one big duvet, each partner has their own separate, smaller comforter.
“This is also known as ‘The Scandinavian method’ as it is standard procedure in the Scandinavian countries,” Li Åslund, a Swedish clinical psychologist and sleep expert at Sleep Cycle, told HuffPost. “In fact, it is much harder to find duvet covers for double-size duvets in this part of the world.”
“A large majority of households has never even reflected on the fact that people in other countries might find this practice surprising or even weird,” she added.
The Scandinavian method got some buzz recently when photographer and content creator Cecilia Blomdahl, who is originally from Sweden but lives on the Arctic island of Svalbard, posted about it on her TikTok. The video has since amassed more than 1.1 million views and almost 700 comments.
“Yes, we have two duvets here and I could never live with one,” Blomdahl says in the video as she makes her bed.
One of the main benefits of using two duvets? Temperature regulation. Each partner can adjust their side to suit their individual preferences, Åslund said. So if you run hot but your partner runs cold, you can choose a lightweight comforter and your partner can use a heavier one.
Another plus of the Scandinavian method: fewer sleep disturbances. That’s good news if you share a bed with someone who steals the covers.
“Each partner’s movements will be less disruptive to the other’s, reducing the number of unnecessary awakenings, including the ones people don’t remember but may nevertheless decrease sleep quality,” Jade Wu — a behavioral sleep medicine specialist and sleep researcher at Duke University School of Medicine — told HuffPost.
Martin Seeley, CEO and sleep expert at MattressNextDay, says he recommends doubling up on duvets for just that reason.
“I would recommend it to anyone who shares a bed with someone and who lives in a cooler climate,” he told HuffPost. “If the duvet slips off or one person hogs it by accident, this can cause disturbance to your sleep and you may find you are waking up more often due to becoming cold in the night.”
“When we’re sleeping better, we are better at regulating emotions and making sound decisions — both very important for having a good relationship,” Wu said. “When we feel and function better, we have more emotional resources to devote to our partners. But when we are exhausted, foggy, or irritable, it’s easy to butt heads over little things or miscommunicate; it’s also harder for us to be attentive and supportive.”
There are a couple of potential drawbacks to the Scandinavian method. One concern is that two duvets don’t always have the cohesive, aesthetically pleasing look of one. With this approach, each duvet is typically folded in half length-wise, then you lay them next to each other (though you can also try laying them flat and overlapping them a bit).
The individuality of the Scandinavian method could be a downside for some couples, Åslund said. They might find it less romantic or feel less connected not being under the same blanket at night.
“The Scandinavian countries are known for their pragmatic view on family life and their individuality, and the separate duvets can be considered a manifestation of these values,” she said. “For people in other countries, choosing personal comfort over physical closeness can feel uncomfortable and bringing up the subject in a relationship could be a potential source of conflict.”
At the end of the day, it’s up to you and your partner to find a system that works for you.
“Even though the practice entails many individual benefits when it comes to sleep quality, it’s worth noting that separate duvets might not be for all couples and it’s a matter of personal preference,” Åslund said.
If you’re interested in trying the method and are in the market for an additional cover, try one of these highly reviewed options below. The Scandinavian way is two twin-size comforters, but you can do two full-size ones if you prefer. Sleep tight.
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This set comes with a 100% cotton comforter and two shams.
Promising review: "Marimekko patterns and textiles have been my favorite for many years, so I was very excited to this item (I had my eye on it for awhile). The pattern is eye-catching and looks great in my bedroom. It fit my bed perfectly, and it's nice and warm. I am VERY pleased with my purchase." — Anonymous
A jungle full-size comforter set plant lovers will appreciate
The set includes a comforter and two pillowcases made from a mix of cotton and polyester material.
Promising review: "To all my plant lovers, this bed set is for you! Urban always has high quality comforters (breathable yet warm), and this one is no different! Can be a great accent piece for any room and it's big! I’m a bit mad it went on sale right after I bought it at full price, but that said, get it while you can." — lberk
A boho full-size comforter set giving off all those soothing vibes
Comes with one comforter and two pillowcases made from a microfiber material.
Promising review: "I can't say enough about this comforter! It truly is the softest material and best weight I've ever experienced. Totally contours your shape, unlike other comforters that just lay on top of you. The pattern is perfect for my style and washes wonderfully. I have a double bed, but ordered a king size so I don't need a bedskirt. Love, love, love this comforter!" — Amy
A velvet full-size comforter set made with silky soft material
Uses a hypoallergenic polyester filling and includes a comforter, two pillow shams, and a decorative pillow.
Promising review: "I’ve had this bedding set for years and it is still in great condition. Velvet is soft and I constantly get compliments on it. Also, it’s fantastic if you have pets; it doesn’t show pet hair at all." — Arei
Made from 100% microfiber material and includes a comforter, two pillow shams, and a decorative pillow.
Promising review: "It's super comfy! The comforter is fluffy but light, and it still seems comfortable transitioning into spring. The gold is a little bolder than I expected, it almost looks like foil. Still very pretty." — lizmatt
A microfiber full-size comforter set reviewers say is super cozy
Includes a comforter and two pillow shams.
Promising review: "The fabric is so soft and feels amazing! It did have a bit of a smell when opening it, but I threw it straight into the washer. When I took it out of the dryer, it was perfectly fine! Soft as ever, smelled good, and fit the bed perfectly! It is on the lighter side for a comforter, but it's exactly what I wanted and hoped for. Excellent price for the product." — Alison Emerick
A tufted full-size comforter set made with 100% polyester fill
Each set comes with a comforter and two pillow shams.
Promising review: "This is hands down my favorite comforter I’ve ever owned. Such a neutral yet stunning fixture of my room and style — and it’s so fluffy. It makes getting out of bed even harder! Absolutely recommend!" — mbetz
The set is made with 100% microfiber material that includes a comforter, two pillow shams, a decorative pillow, a flat/fitted sheet, and two standard pillowcases.
Promising review: "I honestly love this bedding set! it is definitely worth the price. The little throw pillow was really what sold me, it makes my bed look so neat when it’s made. Definitely recommend!" — Reagan Schmidt
The 100% microfiber material comes with a comforter and two shams.
Promising review: "This comforter was bought for my preteen son who loves a soft and comfy blanket, but needed a good comforter. This comforter does not disappoint! It is super soft, fluffy yet lightweight for our warm summer evenings here in Florida. He loves this comforter just as much as I do! I purchased two and gave one to my parents for their guest room at their home! Nothing but positive remarks from everyone! Will buy another very soon." — Amazon customer
It's made from breathable cotton material and comes with a comforter and two pillow shams.
Promising review: "This comforter set is so pretty! I used it for our guest bedroom which is a natural garden theme. The colors really brighten the room without being loud and the ladybugs are so sweet! It’s definitely not just for kids, it’s very versatile. Such a lovely set!" — Missbernadette
This set includes a comforter, a fitted and flat sheet, and four pillowcases.
Promising review: "I was expecting some kind of crappy made set that would get me through this year of college, but the comforter is SO comfortable and the sheets were softer than the sheets I got from Target last year. For the friendly price of $50, this comfortable set is great. Not to mention the FOUR pillow covers included. Love the colors as well!" — Jasmine
Comes with two decorative pillow, two pillow shams, and a comforter.
Promising review: "This is one of the most comfortable AND stylish bedding sets I’ve ever purchased. WASHES WELL. The stitching has come apart slightly because of dogs nail, but any bedding set would if it had actual stitching detail, which this set does." — amongelli
Made from a microfiber material that includes a comforter, a throw blanket, and two pillow shams.
Promising review: "This is my second time purchasing a Pillowfort bed set. I absolutely love them! They wash well, stay fluffy, and the material is soft and breathable. My toddler drags her set around the house and cuddles up on the couch with it every morning!" — Chelsea
A pinch-pleated full-size comforter set oozing elegance and simplicity
The set is made with 100% polyester material and includes a comforter and two shams.
Promising review: "This comforter is so amazingly lightweight and gives you just the right amount of warmth. It stays a comfortable temperature throughout the night too, and let's talk about the SOFTNESS! This isn't your run of the mill/inexpensive comforter that has to sacrifice material quality for price — there is almost like a satin-ish feel to it, but without the slip and slide feel of satin. I am very very impressed with this comforter, and the two pillowcases — also super soft." — Benji in AL