Customers are going crazy for the Twilight Body Spray from Lush Cosmetics, claiming it helps knock them out for a great night’s sleep. We asked a sleep expert: Is this new product really effective for catching zzz's?

Bella Gerard
November 08, 2017

Lush Cosmetics is on a mission to make sweet dreams easily attainable—and if customer reviews are any indication, their newest beauty product might help you drift off to dreamland in no time.

The popular cosmetics brand has a reputation for creating some of the most unique cruelty-free products in the skincare space. One of their most popular products is the Sleepy Body Lotion ($10; lushusa.com), which has an impressive 4.9-star rating on the site and is beloved for its relaxing scent. The soothing aroma comes from a combination of lavender oil, almond oil, tonka absolute, and ylang ylang oil—and many customers swear that applying the creamy lotion at night helps them fall asleep quickly.

Health social media director Rebecca Shinners swears by the stuff, crediting the calming scent as a key component in her nighttime routine. "As a notoriously bad sleeper, using the lotion version of this product helped me wind down at the end of the day and feel relaxed," she says.

To capitalize on the success of the Sleepy Body Lotion, Lush recently released a new formulation in spray form. The Twilight Body Spray ($30; lushusa.com) is described as a "lavender lullaby" that can be applied directly on the body or spritzed onto sheets to encourage slumber. The spray has been available in the U.K. for a few months, but it's new to the U.S. website and stores.

We haven't had the chance to try the Twilight Body Spray yet, but if the U.K. reviews are any indication, it's going to be popular. One user referred to the product as her "best sleep aid," saying that "this body spray coupled with the Sleepy body lotion knocks me out cold." Another user wrote that she uses the product to normalize her sleep patterns; yet another said it helps ease her migraines.

The customer reviews are compelling, and we can't wait to stock up on this calming spray. But can a beauty product really work as a sleep aid?

We asked Raj Dasgupta MD, an assistant professor of clinical medicine at the Keck School of Medicine, for his take. He tells us that, yes, certain scents can help you drift off to dreamland a little more easily. "Scents have the ability to trigger memories and evoke emotions that can make it difficult to sleep," he notes. "Certain fragrances that make you happy and relaxed may promote sleep by reducing stress and anxiety."

But when it comes to sleep hygiene, scent is just one part of the picture. "Think of sleep as a puzzle and the pieces as components of getting sleep," Dr. Dasgupta says. Other important pieces: how dark your room is, the temperature, and avoiding stimulus (think smartphones, tablets, and your TV) before bedtime.

Dr. Dasgupta adds that there is research suggesting lavender to be a particularly sleep-inducing scent. "Numerous studies confirm its calming, soothing, and sedative effects," he says. "It's even been shown to work the same way biochemically that certain anti-anxiety medications do with certain neurotransmitters in your brain."

His advice: While it may not be the answer to everyone's insomnia, skincare products that contain lavender could be worth trying before you reach for over-the-counter or prescription sleep aids. "If the missing piece of your sleep puzzle is smell, maybe try this body spray and lotion," he says.