Is TikTok’s “Sleepy Girl Mocktail”? Does it really work? Expert participation

When you want to wind down in the evening, there are a variety of calming beverages to choose from, whether it's a glass of wine, a steaming cup of chamomile tea or a soothing cup of hot chocolate. If you've tried them all and still can't sleep until 3 a.m., then you need to try TikTok's "Sleepy Girl Mocktail" — a refreshing, non-alcoholic drink that should help you relax and get Some serious sleep.

Originally shared by creators @caleshea and @gracie_norton, the Sleepy Girl Mocktail has become a go-to bedtime drink on TikTok, with the recipe viewed over 1 million times. The drink combines tart cherry juice, a scoop of magnesium and a splash of lemon prebiotic soda. When mixed together, Norton calls it "a match made in heaven for a good night's sleep."

Under Norton's video, someone wrote: "I drink tart cherry juice every night before bed and sleep like a rock! Finally, someone gets it," while another said: "This has been a game changer for me. I sleep much better."

The drink may be a popular sleep elixir, but its ingredients are nothing new. Below, nutritionists break down the magic of magnesium and tart cherry juice, and when to drink them for maximum benefit.

Does the "Sleepy Girl Mocktail" really work?

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Magnesium and tart cherry juice are known to be powerhouses in reducing anxiety and aiding insomnia, so it makes sense that the Sleepy Girl mocktail gets rave reviews.

Magnesium is a mineral that plays an important role in nervous system function, which is directly related to sleep, says Jenna Stangland, a registered dietitian and sports nutrition expert at Momentous. "While it's involved in over 300 enzyme reactions in the body, it has a lot to do with muscle relaxation, making it a great supplement to take before bed," she tells Bustle. If you're stressed, stressed, or tense, magnesium can help you relax. "It also involves neurotransmitter balance in the brain, helping to reduce anxiety and stress," she says.

One of these neurotransmitters is GABA, which helps calm the body and is therefore important for sleep and relaxation, says Jessica Sepel, clinical nutritionist and founder of JSHealth. "Magnesium deficiency has been linked to increased anxiety and stress, which can impact sleep quality." This is important to note if your late nights are filled with worry.

Of course, most mocktails are made with tart cherry juice, another ingredient linked to better sleep. Tart cherry juice contains melatonin, a hormone associated with regulating the circadian rhythm of the body clock. "When melatonin levels rise, the brain is primed to relax and sleep," says Stengland. She adds that tart cherry juice has also been linked to reducing muscle soreness and inflammation, which can also help help you sleep, especially if you're prone to pain or soreness.

While everyone's body is different, the popularity of the Sleepy Girl mocktail makes sense. "It checks multiple boxes of the recipe and [helps] the brain and body get into relaxation mode," Stangeland says. To make the most of it, drink a mocktail one to two hours before bed when you start slowing down and relaxing. "This will get the drink into your bloodstream and take effect when you want your head to hit the pillow," she says.

How to Make Sleepy Girl Mocktail

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To make TikTok's famous drink, grab your favorite glass and mix these three ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup plain tart cherry juice
  • 1 tablespoon magnesium powder
  • Finish by adding a prebiotic seltzer, such as Lemon Lime Oleo or Sparkling Water

Please feel free to adjust it.

Research references:

Arab, A. (2023). The role of magnesium in sleep health: a systematic review of the existing literature. Research on biological tracking elements. DOI: 10.1007/s12011-022-03162-1.

Boyle Note: (2017). Effects of magnesium supplementation on subjective anxiety and stress—a systematic review. Nutrients. 2017 Apr 26;9(5):429. DOI: 10.3390/nu9050429. Phone number: 28445426; PMCID: PMC5452159.

Gottesman, C. (2002). GABA mechanisms and sleep. Neuroscience. DOI: 10.1016/s0306-4522(02)00034-9.

Hill, J. A. (2021). Tart cherry supplements and recovery after strenuous exercise: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. doi:10.1123/ijsnem.2020-0145.

Howson, G. (2012). Effects of tart cherry juice (Prunus cerasus) on melatonin levels and improved sleep quality. European Journal of Nutrition. DOI: 10.1007/s00394-011-0263-7.

Losso, J. N. (2018). Preliminary study and mechanism of tart cherry juice in treating insomnia. I'm J Ther. doi:10.1097/MJT.0000000000000584.


Jenna Stangland, RD, RD, Momentous Sports Nutrition Specialist

Jessica Sepel, clinical nutritionist, founder of JSHealth