Among all the cool “old” spiritual things that are being brought back to the public eye, like smudging ceremonies and ritual baths, the resurgence of dream pillows is by far the one I’m most excited about.
Just like taking an herbal sleepy time tea and meditating, turning off your phone and reading a book-- dream pillows are an amazing way to get your mind and body to fully rest when you go to bed at night.
So let’s get into it: what is a dream pillow?
A dream pillow is an ancient sleep remedy. It combines aromatherapy, affirmations, and vibrational therapy to relax your muscles, calm your thoughts and help your body truly rest.
You would totally benefit from making one of these (even if you’re a little bit skeptical) if you have any of the following:
A job where you are a caretaker of any sort: teachers, medical professionals, parents, entrepreneurs
A stressful situation you’re currently in emotionally
These types of life-changing factors can all be helped tremendously with true, deep sleep.
Dream pillows were given by grandmas healers for centuries as a seemless way to teach children about herbal medicine and spirituality.
Any time someone said they were having nightmares, needed guidance on big decisions or were tossing and turning all night, dream pillows were the go-to remedy.
When you make your dream pillow, it’s always easiest to use a satchel with drawstrings on it so that you can change out the crystal and affirmation as needed.
But in a pinch, you can use something as simple as a new, fluffy sock.
When you pick the contents of your dream pillow, I always encourage people to pick herbs and flowers that resonate with them.
Don’t choose solely based on the medicinal factors. That probably sounds sketchy to you. Like, “isn’t she supposed to be a certified herbalist?”
It is true that some herbs facilitate sleep better than others, but some of those herbs don’t smell good.
Like hops? That scent is bitter and pungent, no one wants their pillow to smell like a rank beer.
Same goes with your crystals (if you choose to put those in there.) You don’t have to pick exact ones that are specifically for sleep.
You can also pick crystals that just feel good when you pick them up. You can choose ones for protection, self-love or clarity of mind.
All three of those things bring you good rest, don’t they?!
Your affirmation is all about the intention you want. If you want deeper rest, write that. If you want to release bad vibes, go with that.
If you’re wanting to wake up energized and full of life, go with that.
Just like your health is in your hands because you know your body best, your sleep is controlled by your intention behind it ‘cause you know what the fuck you need.
Now, if you’re not into the spirituality part, don’t worry. Dream pillows are legit. Aromatherapy has gotten pretty popular again since the rise of essential oils in wellness circles.
But those concentrated vials of expensive oil aren’t the only way to get the healing scents.
Using raw herbs, fresh or dry, is a surefire way to get those essential oils in a safe way.
There’s a reason that herbal medicine has stood the test of time. All this wisdom that used to be passed down by word of mouth by our ancestors is being scientifically proven in labs across the world.
Dear skeptical friend, rest assured that the herbs we mention that help with sleep have been studied and are proven to help you rest, fight anxiety and depression.
On to the main event: let’s build a high-vibe dream pillow!
Let’s say that you’ve been having a rough time at work. You love your new job but you find yourself coming home really exhausted but keyed up emotionally.
It’s been really challenging because you’re the new gal, so you want to do your best. But you haven’t had a lot of time to see your family or friends, much less practice self-care.
Because of this, you’ve been really restless, having weird dreams and waking up tired even tho you went to bed at a reasonable hour.
So you decide to implement some good habits. You drink chamomile tea after having a well-balanced dinner.
You sprinkle epsom salts in your bath and have a good soak. You curl up with a good book. And before bed, you decide to make a dream pillow.
You grab your satchel and add 1-3 herbs.
Some great ones are:
Lavender - perfect herb when you’re stressed out
Rose - classically used to ease anxiety and promote “love hormones”
Mugwort - best used for severe exhaustion and insomnia (I would add a better smelling herb too.)
Rosemary - if you’re looking for divine guidance
Oatmeal - to nourish your nervous system
Other goodies are: chamomile and skullcap.
I am a big fan of talking to plants. There’s a lot of science that backs the belief that plants and flowers have vibes just like crystals do.
So as you press your herbs into the satchel, whisper your intentions to them.
Here are a few to spark your creativity:
#1 You have done well today (insert your name here) it is time to rest.
#2 You deserve to relax your mind and body.
#3 Your good vibes are so strong that you will not have nightmares.
#4 You will wake up energized and ready to take on your day.
Next, you choose your crystals!
Like I said before, go with your intuition. Let your gut guide you to what crystal would serve you best. But here are a few ideas:
Howlite - classically used for insomnia
Amethyst - for general calming vibes
Rose Quartz - for self-love
Black Tourmaline - for protection against bad vibes
After that, write down an affirmation that goes with the intention you whispered to your herbs. Think of this kind of like taking your intention one step further.
Keeping a journal of those affirmations is a great idea.
You can keep track of how your sleep was affected by it. And how you carried that rest throughout the day.
It’s also very practical to write down random thoughts of what you need to do tomorrow. Getting it out of your head and onto a page is another helpful sleeping trick.
Sweet dreams, sweet friends!
Tell us what you'll be putting into your dream pillow. Share below!
This article was written by Goddess Detox's Chief Herbalist, Alyssa Humann, CH.
Alyssa is our on site herbalist. She became a certified herbalist through the Bellebuono School of Herbal Medicine. She is a published essayist who’s been featured on HerbMentor. She is a copyeditor with Nick Polizzi at the Sacred Science. Her life revolves around the passion to bring plant medicine back to the people through education and relationships. She is a small business owner living in Portland, OR. She focuses on making custom remedial kits for her clients to help them come back into balance as they approach holistic healing together.
Website: www.pdxpestle.comInstagram: @PdxPestle