The Spa Spy blog

Early morning flight? Can’t sleep? Try aromatherapy.

According to the Sleep Council, lack of sleep is one of the most common 21st-century health problems. Only 1 in 10 of us say that we always get a good night's sleep, and 1 in 5 suffer from a lack of sleep.

Stress, of course, is one of the main contributors to sleeplessness, and there are few things more stressful than the fear of missing an early morning flight! After a recent groggy 3am start, our sleep-deprived senses pricked when we heard about a sleep programme that has been developed at London Heathrow's Crowne Plaza.

Aromatherapy is one of the few therapies that has shown a proven effect on helping combat stress. In a nod to this, the Crowne Plaza Heathrow has developed a Sleep Advantage package, which uses "This Works" aromatherapy products as part of their sleep programme.

Working with the chairman of the British Sleep Council, the Crowne Plaza has created "the ultimate sleep environment": luxurious soft bedding with 100%-cotton sheets and supportive mattress topper, a designated Quiet Zone area to reduce external noise, downloadable podcasts from sleep specialist Dr Chris Idzikowski, and a set of This Works aromatherapy products to ensure a good night's sleep.

The aromatherapy pack contains two products, a "deep calm" pillow spray containing a blend of lavender, patchouli, vetiver, blue chamomile and camphor, and a small roll-on to apply to pulse points with lavender, eucalyptus and frankincense. These products were surprisingly effective at clearing my mind of nagging worries and allowing me to doze off. I still had to wake up at 4.30am, but after a power shower and healthy brekkie, I got to my 6.40am flight with a smile on my face. A first!