Home / Blog September 13, 2023

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Which is the Best Direction to Sleep, Scientifically (South or East)?

There are many factors that affect sleep quality, but did you know that your sleeping direction could be one of them? Below, we discuss which direction to sleep in scientifically and why it matters.

women sleeping with bearaby velvet napper


The south direction is the recommended sleep direction by Vastu Shastra and Feng Shui traditions.

Other sources suggest that the East is the second-best alternative to face while sleeping.

Scientific evidence may be limited, but anecdotal accounts suggest significant benefits of sleeping while facing the south or east directions. 

Did you know?
Animals like cattle and deer align their bodies in the north-south direction when resting.

Wondering what the healthiest sleep direction is? Does it even matter which direction you choose to sleep? Yes, it does… according to the East Asian traditions of Vastu Shastra and Feng Shui.

The most recommended direction to sleep in is the South. This is because aligning your body with the Earth's magnetic field can lead to improved sleep quality. While scientific evidence supporting these recommendations remains scarce, anecdotes propose noticeable improvements in sleep by adopting a South-facing sleeping position.

Which Direction Is The Best to Sleep Towards?

There seems to be somewhat of a consensus between Vastu Shastra and Feng Shui about recommending a South-facing sleep direction. These traditions relate sleep quality to environmental factors such as the earth’s magnetic field and the flow of energy, respectively.

Conversely, there is little scientific evidence to back these traditions’ recommendation to sleep in the Southward direction. Here, we explore what science has to say and then delve deeper into the sleep-related principles of Vastu shastra and Feng Shui.

What is the Healthiest Sleeping Direction Scientifically?

There is no recommended which direction to sleep scientifically, however, some reports advocate for a southward sleeping direction. This is because they propose that the earth’s north-south magnetic field has an effect on our quality of sleep.

One study reported by the National Institute of Health (NIH) has shown that humans may be somewhat sensitive to the earth’s electromagnetic fields. This implies that the human brain may perceive the polarity between the north pole and the south pole. Because of this, there may be reasons to suggest that our planet’s magnetic field might interact with our sleeping position and direction.

However, another study, also reported by the NIH found no significant improvements in sleeping patterns on exposing a group of young women to magnetic fields. This shows that more scientific research is needed in backing up any recommendations on what the best sleeping direction is.

person sleeping with breathable blanket

What Direction Should I Sleep In Feng Shui?

The South.

Feng Shui is a Chinese tradition involved with how we place things in our environment. It is based on the idea of flowing energy (chi). Some people have claimed that ancient practitioners of Feng Shui prefer southward energy because of China’s natural climate where you can experience warm winds from the south.

While there is no solid scientific backing of Feng Shui’s principles, there may be some comparisons worth noting between this tradition and Environmental Psychology, which also proposes that there is a role that our physical environment plays in our well being.

What Direction Should I Sleep In Vastu Shastra?

The best sleeping direction for improved sleep quality as per Vastu Shastra is the South.

Vastu Shastra is an ancient architectural tradition from India, that values the role of space in promoting well-being. Vastu Shastra proposes that the human head is the acting north-pole of our body, therefore, to sleep well, it helps to sleep with the head facing Southward. This is based on the scientific principle that “opposites attract, likes repel”.

Benefits of Sleeping While Facing the South Direction

While there is no clear suggestion about which direction to sleep scientifically, as per Vastu Shastra, the following are the advantages of sleeping in the direction of the South pole:

  • Alleviates sleep issues such as sleep apnea and insomnia.
  • Encourages deep, restorative sleep.
  • Improves digestion and enhances nutrient absorption.
  • Increases blood flow to the brain, potentially boosting cognitive function.
  • Lowers the risk of heart complications.
  • Promotes proper spinal alignment, reducing the risk of back and neck pain.
  • Enhances overall energy levels and fosters a sense of balance and harmony. 

While the time it takes to experience these benefits can vary from person to person, many individuals report waking up feeling more refreshed and rejuvenated after consistently sleeping in the South direction. Therefore, if you are looking for an additional factor to improve your sleep hygiene, you may want to consider adjusting your sleep direction towards the south pole.

To supplement your sleep, you can also add a knit weighted blanket like our Cotton Napper. The Napper’s evenly-distributed weight promotes the production of melatonin, the sleep hormone, hence making it easier to get deeper sleep.

waking up energetic with weighted blanket

Which Direction Should I Not Keep My Head While Sleeping?

North: Sleeping with your head pointing northward is not recommended due to the apparent repulsion between the earth’s north pole and your body’s north pole, the head. This position can disrupt sleep and some people have reported experiencing headaches due to sleeping while facing the north.

West. Sleeping with your head facing west may cause restlessness, according to Vastu Shastra. However, some ancient Indian beliefs suggest that this orientation can motivate individuals to achieve their goals.

Is It Better To Sleep With Your Head North Or East?

The East, much like the South, is considered a good sleeping direction. Vastu Shastra recommends eastward sleeping, especially for children and those on a spiritual journey. This direction aligns with the rising sun and is believed to be brimming with positive energy.

One study by the NIH reported that people sleeping towards the East took a shorter time to enter REM sleep, which is associated with uninterrupted rest, improved attention, and memory.

Regardless of your chosen sleep direction, consider supplementing your sleep experience with a knit weighted blanket, whose heaviness promotes restorative sleep. Our Cotton Napper, for instance, provides Deep Touch Pressure (DTP), which promotes the production of the sleep hormone, melatonin.

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Which Direction Should I Sleep Towards in the United States?

When researching which direction to sleep scientifically, you may come across multiple contradicting sources. For instance, there are some claims that your sleep direction changes depending on whether you live in the northern or southern hemisphere. However, these claims cannot be backed. This is because the earth’s magnetic field remains constant in both the upper and lower halves of the earth.

This means that for people living in the USA wondering “Which direction should I sleep in?”, the answer is still: South.


As per the Hindu tradition of Vastu Shastra, the South is the best direction to face while sleeping. This recommendation is echoed by the Chinese traditional practice of Feng Shui, which teaches how to achieve harmony in your lived environment.

You may try changing your sleeping direction for a week or more and note any sleep-related or health changes that happen. You can use a digital compass on your phone to align your bed towards the South (if possible). To supplement your quest for deeper sleep, consider having with you a weighted blanket like our Cotton Napper, whose heaviness supports restorative rest.


1. What If I'm Unable To Determine The Cardinal Directions In My Bedroom?

You can use a digital compass on your smartphone to help you identify and align your bed with the desired direction, making it easier to experiment with different sleeping orientations.

2. What If I Have Limited Space And Cannot Change My Sleeping Direction?

If you're unable to change your sleeping direction, focus on improving other factors that contribute more to your sleep quality. These include: sleeping in a dark and cooler room, setting aside 7 - 9 hours of sleep, and sleeping under weight.

3. Where Should A Bed Be Placed In A Room With Windows?

According to Feng Shui, the head of your bed should sit securely against a solid wall. You always want the support of a wall behind you, so avoid windows behind the head of the bed if possible. Make sure it's securely attached and, whenever possible, opt for a headboard with soft edges.

4. What Else Does Feng Shui Recommend About Sleep?

Other Feng Shui sleep-related recommendations include keeping a clutter-free bedroom and considering neutral earthy color tones for your bedroom walls and decor. Another suggestion is to have linen as your material of choice for pillows and sheets.

5. What Are Other Sleep Recommendations By Vastu Shastra?

Vastu Shastra also advises that you close windows and doors when in the bedroom and avoid having mirrors in front of your bed. Other suggestions align with those of Feng Shui mentioned above.

6. What If I Still Have Trouble Sleeping Even After Trying The Recommended Sleep Direction?

Your sleeping direction is only one aspect of your sleep hygiene. If you find yourself still struggling to fall asleep, you may want to try a weighted blanket for support. Our Cotton Napper, for instance, has an even weight distribution, whose Deep Touch Pressure (DTP) promotes the production of the sleep hormone, melatonin.