Categories: Sleep Products

Sleep Pod Review – An Adult Swaddle

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The Sleep Pod is a cocoon-like sack designed to feel like a hug or the sensation of being swaddled like a baby. Starting feet first pull the sleep sack up above your shoulders, and the fabric of the sleep sack will form around your body's curves and puts gentle pressure on your skin. The mild pressure is a form of Deep Touch Pressure therapy, which is said to help reduce anxiety and promote deeper sleep.

The Sleep Pod is lightweight, portable, and marketed as an alternative to the weighted blanket. We slept with Sleep Pod for five nights and wore it on the couch while binge-watching shows on HBO. In this Sleep Pod review, we go over the specs, the difference between a sleep sack and weighted blanket, how to use it, and our personal experience using the Sleep Pod.

What is the difference between a sleep sack and a weighted blanket?

Both the weighted blanket and the Sleep Pod provide varying levels of Deep Touch Pressure. Weighted blankets usually draped over the body, and the pressure comes from the weight inside the blanket. The weight of the blanket is typically 10% of your body but spread out over the area the size of a twin sheet (see our buyers guide to weighted blankets).

The Sleep Pod uses an entirely different technology to achieve Deep Touch Pressure. The large sleep sack goes around the entire body. It is loose in some areas and tight in others, depending on the position of the body. It is more like an adult swaddle. Unstretched, the Sleep Pod, is 5′ long, but I was able to stretch it 8′. While easy to stretch, it fights to get back to its unstretched state. It is the contraction of the stretchiness that puts the pressure wherever it touches the body. The Overall pressure is much lighter than a weighted blanket, but that doesn't mean it won't provide some of the same benefits for some users. The benefits of the sleep sack will depend on body size and sleeping position. If sleep sacks like the Sleep Pod increase in popularity, I would like to see a wider variety of sizes and shapes to fit individual sleepers better.

How to use a Sleep Pod

There is no need to find a friend to swaddle you anymore because the Sleep Pod is easy to use by yourself. There are a few ways to put on the Sleep Pod. Hug Sleep recommends putting it on while lying in bed. Start by pulling it to the upper chest and then, over time, pull the sack above your shoulders. It should not be pulled entirely over your face as it will be difficult to breathe. I found it easier to put on standing up and then lying down in bed.

When sleeping on your side, the manufacturer suggested putting a pillow into the sleep sack to provide support for the knees. I used a full-sized pillow while sleeping in the sleep sack and appreciated the extra support of the pillow.

The Sleep Pod also works while lounging in a comfortable chair or on the couch. Keep in mind if you need to get up for water or go to the bathroom, you will need to remove the Sleep Pod. It is possible to waddle around while wearing the sleep sack, but it is quite awkward.

How to buy a Sleep Pod

Sizes

Sleep Pods come in two sizes and should be chosen based on a user's height and waist size. The medium is perfect for anyone whose height is between 4'8″ to 5'7″ with a waist up to size 10 or 32′. The large works for anyone between 5'7″ to 6'4″ tall up to a size 22 or 39′ waist. I am 6″ tall, and my wife is 5'7,” so we purchased a Large-sized Sleep Pod. It was plenty long enough for my body, and my wife had extra room to move around.

Price

$110 (Frequently on sale for $99) Check Price

Construction

What it looks like

The fabric is a heathered fabric with speckles of white, grey, and black colors. Visually, it looks like a tall fabric bag with a mild taper at the top and bottom. The large-sized sack is about 5′ long and 24″ wide. The top hole of the Sleep Pod tapers down to 16″ wide when relaxed but can stretch to 24″.

What its made of

The fabric is 89% Polyester, 11% Lycra.

Experience using the Sleep Pod sleep sack

As a college student, I traveled to Central America for an adventure. Before I left, I was concerned about finding scorpions or spiders in my bed or sleeping in unhygienic conditions. To reduce my worries, my mom made me a sleep sack out of a very soft cotton t-shirt-like material. When rolled up, it took up very little room, so it wasn't a burden to carry in my backpack. On the trip, my sleep sack was more than just a barrier from insects; it became an essential part of my comfort and sleep routine. Research has shown that half of your brain is alert when sleeping in a new place. My homemade sleep sack helped provide additional comfort and anxiety reduction. The Sleep Pod reminds me of my old sleep sack with so many improvements. Sleeping in the Sleep Pod offers a sense of comfort, whether using it in bed at home, on the couch or while traveling the world.

What it feels like

The fabric felt cool, smooth, and soft on the skin. The smoothness of the polyester/lycra allows the body to move around within the sleep sack without any friction. The lycra material also allows the fabric to stretch out significantly. The fabric stretches outward easily, but in return, it applies a mild pressure (Deep Touch Pressure). Surprisingly, the body has a good range of motion in the Sleep Pod, and it is nothing like being inside a sleeping bag (AKA mummy bag).

The top of the Sleep Pod sleep sack is the narrowest part, and it puts the most pressure high on the torso or above the shoulders, depending on how high it is on your body. At first, I was surprised at how roomy the Speed Pod felt from the hips down and wondered if I would feel the mild pressure. After I moved around a bit, got comfortable, and paid attention to my body, I started to notice how the fabric pushed against my skin in different ways.

Breathability/Temperature

The thin workout-like shirt material is breathable. Usually, in winter, I sleep with a fluffy light down comforter (if not testing a weighted blanket) and a bedsheet. While using Sleep Pod, I just used the sleep sack. I was never too warm or too cold. The material was thin, but because my entire body was inside, I think it warmed up the cocoon, and the temperature seemed well regulated.

Getting the Sleep Pod on and off my body

I put the Sleep Pod on a few different ways and found the most natural way was to stand up and put one foot in at a time and pull up. It was easy to pull up until I got to my shoulders. I found myself pulling on both sides multiple times to get it up and around my elbows. Usually, I kept the sleep sack at my chest level when I first went to bed. It allowed me to keep my hands free to look at my phone until I was ready to sleep. The last step was to stretch the Sleep Pod over my shoulders, followed by a very brief moment of panic when I realized I had just squished my body into a giant pillowcase. Once adjusted, I felt quite calm. The soft, smooth fabric was cozy and soothing.

One night I had to use the bathroom in the middle of the night. The added step of getting out of the Sleep Pod and then back in was more effort than usual. Especially while using a pillow inside the Sleep Pod, it took more effort to get in and out while trying not to wake up too much.

The stretchiness of the fabric

The first time I put on the Sleep Pod, the stretchiness of the material was distracting, but in a good way. I found myself wanting to see how far each of my limbs would stretch while wearing the Sleep Pod. The stretchiness is a vital part of what makes this sleep sack so good. I found that it would always stretch just enough to let me change sleep positions but retain a gentle pressure on my body. The feet area had plenty of room, and the material stretched to wherever you wanted it to go.

Sleep Pod Tips

As a side sleeper, I followed the Hug Sleep “pro-tip” and shoved a pillow between my knees inside the sleep sack to provide additional support and comfort. When I rolled over to my other side, the pillow would come with me as I turned over.

Using the Sleep Pod for lounging

My wife also used the Sleep Pod for multiple nights while lounging and watching TV. If you are going to be sitting for a while and just need a little stress release, it's great to wear. However, if you know you need to get up soon or go to the bathroom frequently, you may get annoyed at having to take off and put on the Sleep Pod every time. While I can walk around with it, you are asking to fall on your face.

How it compared to a weighted blanket

While both the weighted blanket and the Sleep Pod are said to encourage Deep Pressure, it was a different experience. The weight of a weighted blanket seemed to discourage me from moving around too much physically. The Sleep Pod provided a much gentler pressure that allowed movement but almost pressed you back into shape. With the Sleep Pod, it lets you push a leg or knee in a direction, but if you push too far, it pushes you back. For those who had a negative experience with weighted blankets, I would recommend trying out the Sleep Pod as an alternative lightweight method of achieving Deep Pressure.

Technical Details

Sleep Pod Specs

  • Sizes: Medium – 4'8″ to 5'7″ (up to size 10 or 32′ waist). Large – 5'7″ to 6'4″ (up to size 22 or 39″ waist)
  • Colors: Dark heather grey
  • Material: 89% Polyester, 11% Lycra
  • Weight: 12oz (size large)
  • Made in Wisconsin from imported fabrics

Caring for your Sleep Pod

The Sleep Pod can be washed with warm water and tumble dried. To reduce any fabric pilling, wash the Speed Pod inside out.

Returns/Warranty

30-day Return Policy (return shipping not covered)

Summary

The Sleep Pod provided a comforting, gentle pressure through the contracting of the highly flexible fabric. It wasn't even close to the level of pressure as a weighted blanket, but there was something very soothing about sleeping in the cocoon-like adult swaddle. We would like to see more size options to optimize the opportunities of Deep Touch Pressure across for different body types.

The material itself felt cool, breathable, and warm enough to use without an additional blanket. The biggest hassle of the Sleep Pod was getting in and out. For this reason, we preferred the Sleep Pod when used for extended periods, such as sleeping through the night.

Pros

  • Comfortable and comforting.
  • Portable
  • Machine washable
  • Lightweight and breathable

Cons

  • Bathroom breaks are more complicated.
  • It discourages intimacy opportunities.
  • Pricey.
  • It can be overwhelming to start with your hands “locked” in the sac.
  • It is limited to 39″ waist size. Not suitable for those with larger waists.

Have you tried the Sleep Pod? Let us know what you think as a comment below.

Matt

I'm always open to finding new products and methods for improving my sleep. Sometimes I get to sleep on the job :)

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  • I’m a plus size woman..... would love to see some sizes for us

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Matt

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