The “Sleepy Girl Mocktail” Is All Over TikTok — but Does It Work?

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Does the sleepy girl mocktail work?

Struggling to fall asleep or just want to feel extra rested? A “sleepy girl mocktail” before bedtime could be exactly what you need, according to a recent TikTok trend. Originally shared on the app by creator and hormone coach Calee Shea Sciotto back in January 2023, the TikTok-viral mocktail contains a combination of tart cherry juice, sparkling water, and magnesium powder.

With its wine-like appearance, fruity flavor, and claim of giving you the best sleep of your life, it’s no surprise that people on TikTok are still re-creating the drink almost a year after Sciotto’s video was first posted. After trying it out for myself and experiencing the promised results firsthand, I couldn’t help but wonder if it was the placebo effect, or if the mocktail really did have sleep-inducing properties. To get to the bottom of it, I consulted two experts for more information.

Can the Sleepy Girl Mocktail Actually Help You Fall Asleep?

Fruit juice, sparkling water, and a small scoop of magnesium powder doesn’t seem like an effective sleep aid, but it appears to have some potential. Tart cherry juice, for example, doesn’t just contribute flavor, it’s also a natural source of magnesium, melatonin, and tryptophan. “Melatonin is a hormone that regulates your body’s sleep-wake cycle, and tryptophan is an essential amino acid that helps to produce melatonin,” says Brenna Larson, MS, RDN, a nutrition specialist at Factor.

Magnesium — both in the tart cherry juice and the added powder — may promote relaxation by regulating your melatonin levels and parasympathetic nervous system. “It is actually a mineral that most people don’t get enough of in their diet,” says Emily Tills, MS, RDN, CDN, a New York-based nutrition coach. “However, having appropriate amounts in our diet can aid in sleep and recovery.”

As for the sparkling water? Technically a sleepy girl mocktail doesn’t need it, but a few bubbles do make the drink more enjoyable, even if it doesn’t directly impact sleep.

How to Get the Most Out of a Sleepy Girl Mocktail

Lots of variations of the sleepy girl mocktail are being shared across TikTok — some call for collagen instead of magnesium, others are garnished with an orange slice or use plain water instead of sparkling. But to get the most out of your sleepy girl mocktail, it’s best not to get too creative with substitutions.

Perhaps the most important difference to be mindful of is between magnesium glycinate and magnesium citrate. “Magnesium citrate is a highly absorbable form of magnesium,” Tills notes. “However, it can cause more gastrointestinal upset and diarrhea if taken in high doses.” Magnesium glycinate is therefore a safer bet for a sleepy girl mocktail. The other popular supplement substitution, collagen, has its benefits, but they’re mainly for skin, not sleep.

When it comes to the cherry juice, make sure you’re using tart cherry juice and not black cherry juice, because they aren’t the same. Tart cherries contain more melatonin and tryptophan, which is precisely what promotes better-quality sleep. And for the sparkling water, any flavor will do, though Larson recommends a prebiotic seltzer, such as Olipop or Poppi, for its added benefits. “The addition of Olipop provides prebiotic fiber to promote gut health, and the fiber also delays absorption of the natural sugars in the tart cherry juice to prevent blood sugar from spiking,” she says.

Should You Try the Sleepy Girl Mocktail?

It may be made with ingredients that are readily available at the store, but let’s not forget that magnesium is a dietary supplement, and it’s always best to consult with your doctor before taking any, even in the form of a trendy drink from TikTok. In terms of effectiveness, the ingredients of the sleepy girl mocktail are linked to improved sleep, but every body is different and yours may not respond to the bedtime beverage in the same way that other people have. That being said, both experts agree it doesn’t hurt to try it — in fact Tills describes it as “safer than taking excess doses of melatonin, which the body then becomes reliant on for sleep and melatonin levels in the body.”

Speaking from personal experience, the sleepy girl mocktail won’t knock you out immediately like a sleeping pill might. But as someone who is no stranger to taking melatonin, I found the effects of the sleepy girl mocktail to feel very similar. I definitely felt relaxed while drinking it and rested the next morning. I’m not sure how much of that I can attribute to the mocktail ingredients themselves though, or if the act of winding down with a cold, cherry-flavored drink just put me at ease. But I’d do it again. If you want to see how well it works for you (and you like the taste of cherry), you can find an expert-approved recipe below.

I Tried TikTok's "Sleepy Girl Mocktail": See Photos

Ingredients

  1. 4 oz. tart cherry juice
    200 mg magnesium glycinate
    Prebiotic seltzer to taste

Directions

  1. Add tart cherry juice to a glass filled with ice.
  2. Stir in magnesium glycinate until dissolved.
  3. Top with prebiotic seltzer and enjoy before bed.

Image Source: PS Photography / Kalea Martín

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