As the old saying goes: you should invest in your bed and your shoes because if you’re not in one, you’re in the other. That remains true, but these days it applies to more than just your mattress. With the growing realisation worldwide that sleep is one of the most crucial parts of good health and with most people getting fewer hours than previous generations, there’s a host of products out there designed to help you get your recommended eight hours.
With that in mind, we’ve pulled together some sleep gadgets that we think might help. We haven’t gone too deep – there’s a host of questionable devices out there that verge on the pseudoscience fringes – and instead opted for science-backed technology that from experience has helped achieve a better night’s sleep.
Philips Somneo Sleep and Wake-up Light
Good sleep is not just about getting to sleep, it’s also about waking up. The Philips Somnio Sleep and Wake-up Light is a soothing alternative to louder, more irritable alarms thanks to its sunrise-inspired light function that wakes you up with gradually brighter light.
Unlike comparable products on the market, Philips uses an initial red light, easing into ever brighter white light making for a more comfortable awakening. Brightness and reading options also provide ambient lighting to help you drift off at bedtime while a light-guided wind down function allows for breathing and relaxation exercises.
If you think that pillows are just something to be bought from a supermarket homeware section, think again – Nanu are optimising pillows for the perfect night’s sleep.
Whilst their standard pillow is impressive (think 100%, polyester hollowfibre fill, hypoallergenic, two-year guarantee), they’ll also let you create the perfect pillow – taking into account your height and weight, firmness preferences and whether you sleep on your front, side or back.
Somnilight Amber Booklight
Many find reading before bed a helpful way to nod off, but what you may not realise is the standard issue bulbs in many bedside lamps could be inhibiting your sleep. Somnilight is a handsome alternative. The company, which deals in light therapy, offers a simple clip-on amber reading light that avoids the harsh blue wavelengths that can disrupt sleep.
Studies show that the use of amber light can result in 90 minutes of increased melatonin production and up to an hour more sleep per night.
Mela Comfort Weighted Blanket
Don’t underestimate a good weighted blanket (aka gravity blanket or pressure blanket). In the same way that the practise of swaddling helps newborn babies get off to sleep, the Mela Comfort blanket range is engineered to melt away anxiety with that extra weighted feeling sending you off for calm, restorative sleep.
Weighted blanket therapy is often used for a variety of sleep disorders as well as mental health issues and with Mela you know you’re investing in quality. Perfectly balanced, no need to worry about filling leaking out and anti-rustle glass quartz pellets make for a well-engineered, breathable addition to any sleep routine.
Flare Isolate Aluminium Earplugs
If you want something that can block sound out whilst you sleep, you may as well invest in what the professionals use. Flare’s Isolate Aluminium Earplugs are standard issue in a wide array of industries from live music to motorsport and construction.
Not only do they offer certified and tested sound protection, thanks to a premium aluminium build they’ll also block frequencies evenly meaning no muffled sound. They don’t skimp on comfort either, with the tough and durable body finished off with super-soft memory foam tips.
Beats By Dre Powerbeats Pro Wireless Earphones
Whilst Flare’s earplugs are your best shout for blocking out noise, if on the other hand you require a calming consistent noise to get off to sleep (or perhaps an audiobook/podcast), Beats by Dre’s Powerbeats Pro Wireless Earphones are a great option.
Snug and comfortable in the ear, even if you’re a side sleeper, you won’t need to worry about them falling out in the night thanks to an effective hooked design. The perfect companion to the Calm app’s Sleep Stories or even a rain sounds/white noise playlist on Spotify.
Sound Oasis illumy Smart Sleep Mask
As a rule of thumb, if a product is good enough for NASA, it’s usually good enough for us. The Sound Oasis illumy Smart Sleep Mask is a comfortable, lightweight sleeping mask with a twist. As well as blocking out external light, this mask also provides its own light to trigger your body’s natural responses and rhythms.
Blue shades help you to wake up and red shades provide a calming cue to ease you into sleep. The lights used are the same as those used by NASA on the International Space Station.