Sleep Remedies – Garlic Under Your Pillow

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Today I’m tackling a folksy sleep remedy that I’ve known about for years but have never given a try myself: the ol’ garlic clove under the pillow trick.

Wanna know if slumbering on top of a single measly clove of garlic will cure your nagging sleep disorder? Keep on reading to find out!

Note: The content on Sleepopolis is meant to be informative in nature, but it shouldn’t be taken as medical advice, and it shouldn’t take the place of medical advice and supervision from a trained professional. If you feel you may be suffering from any sleep disorder or medical condition, please see your healthcare provider immediately. 


This one’s inspired by a popular old wives’ tale that suggests that putting an unpeeled garlic clove underneath your pillow at night can help you to both fall and stay asleep. It’s hard to pinpoint when exactly this remedy entered the mainstream, but most people I spoke with seemed at least somewhat familiar with it, usually responding with a, “Oh yeah, I think my Aunt told me to try that once.”

Cody Garlic Surprise
Check out this garlic!

As far as how it works, the instructions are built into the name. All you have to do is slip an unpeeled clove under your pillow right before you fall asleep. When you wake up, toss out the old clove and swap it with a new one at night. Repeat until your insomnia is full on cured.

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Sleep Remedies Garlic Under Pillow
Place the peeled clove under your pillow


While there hasn’t been a lot of research done into garlic’s effects on sleep, what we do know is that the herb is full of magnesium and potassium, two elements that are crucial to catching great shut-eye. And you don’t even have to munch on this member of the onion family to get to these nutritional goodies, as a mere whiff of the pungent aroma can apparently trigger some rather satisfying drowsiness.

Sleep aside, garlic is also jam-packed with Vitamins B & C as well as Allicin, an enzyme derived from chopped garlic that has been shown to have certain antibiotic properties. Recent studies have also suggested that increased consumption of garlic could help fight bad cholesterol and lead to overall better memory retention.

Unpeeled garlic


I’m not sure if it was all a placebo or if what I’ve been missing from my sleep regime has been feeling as though I’m dozing in a deli, but I think this nighttime hack actually worked! While the smell definitely took a second to get used to, after a few minutes, I wasn’t bothered by it at all. In fact, I found it both comforting and calming.

Alright y’all, that does it for this sleep hack! If you have any questions, concerns, remedy ideas or general feedback, make sure to leave a comment on the YouTube video!

Sleep Remedies Garlic Under Pillow Cody Sleep
A great night of sleep!

Cody Gohl

Cody is a former staff editor at Sleepopolis. His work has appeared online for Esquire, Next, LOGO TV, Fandom, Citylife, The Manual, and more.