Best Loose Leaf Teas For a Nightcap
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Health and Wellness

Best Loose Leaf Teas For a Nightcap


Best Loose Leaf Teas For a Nightcap


Close your eyes and imagine your perfect bedtime routine. Maybe you start with a long, warm, relaxing bubble bath complete with your favorite book and soothing tunes playing in the background. Then, you slip into your coziest robe or pajamas, do a soothing skincare routine and curl up in your warm bed to watch an episode of your favorite show, do a puzzle or read more of your book.

Sounds pretty great, right? The only thing missing is a sweet, tasty treat to help you unwind from the inside out and truly soothe your senses – how about a nightcap?

Some people like the occasional glass of wine or hot toddy to help them unwind after a long day; however, a warm cup of tea can be just as relaxing and tasty (plus, it’ll help you sleep better). If you’re looking for a thoughtful gift for a loved one (or even yourself!), a new tea gift set could be the perfect idea.

If you’re specifically looking for a tea that will help you unwind at the end of the day, you’ll want to opt for a caffeine-free blend that includes herbs and flowers that have relaxing properties. However, it’s important to note that tea hasn’t been shown to be an adequate alternative to melatonin or sleeping pills, so you shouldn't rely solely on tea if you’re struggling with chronic sleep issues.

That being said, a little soothing cup of warmth is always a relaxing treat before bed. Here are a few of the best loose leaf teas for your next nightcap or self-care basket you gift to a friend:


Pretty much everyone is familiar with the soothing powers of lavender. Used for centuries as a natural remedy for anxiety, depression and insomnia, lavender can be heaven-sent for those looking for the perfect way to unwind their mind and body after a stressful day.

It doesn’t hurt that lavender is such a beautiful color – when its flower buds are brewed, they create a gorgeous purple hue. Like many other teas, lavender soothes both the body and the senses by providing a burst of calming aromatherapy.


Chamomile is probably the most common type of tea people like to drink at bedtime. Chamomile itself is a plant that has natural sedative effects, so if you’re more concerned about its calming properties than its ability to help you fall asleep, you may be able to give your melatonin gummies a night off in favor of a steaming hot cup of chamomile tea. Experts say chamomile also has additional health benefits, including improved digestive health, heart health and blood sugar levels.

Many people also enjoy tea blends that combine chamomile with other soothing flavors and herbs, such as lavender or jasmine.


Anxiety and stress are two extremely common causes of poor sleep, especially in adults. Our busy lifestyles can often leave us with very little room to truly decompress from our everyday stressors, causing us to lose sleep or have a hard time falling asleep due to feelings of overstimulation or worry.

This is why it’s so important to find healthy ways to help mitigate the physical impacts of anxiety. Passionflower has become an extremely popular type of tea because of its ability to do just that. Also referred to as passiflora or maypop, passionflower tea is also known for its sedative abilities. When brewed as a tea, passionflower has a somewhat grassy, earthy flavor, so you may prefer to sweeten it up with a bit of honey or find a loose leaf tea blend that combines other flavors with passionflower.


When we were little, being swaddled or tucked into bed by a loved one was often the sweetest part of going to sleep. The body naturally reacts positively to feelings of closeness and comfort, and rooibos tea has the uncanny ability to recreate that sense of comfort in a cup.

If you love the rich flavor of black tea, but don’t want the caffeine to keep you awake all night, rooibos is the perfect alternative that packs the same flavorful punch.

Rooibos doesn’t have as many known sleep benefits as other teas – like chamomile or lavender – but it does have known cardiovascular and cholesterol benefits. You can’t go wrong when treating your body to something that’s both soothing and nourishing before bed.

Valerian Root

Believe it or not, studies have shown that valerian root actually contains properties that are similar to the compounds used in common anti-anxiety medications. It also increases levels of GABA, a chemical messenger that helps regulate your nervous system and make you feel sleepy.

People also describe valerian root as “woody” or “earthy,” so if you like your tea on the sweeter side, you’ll want to add a dash of honey or find a loose leaf blend that combines valerian root with something more subdued.

Happy sipping!

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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