nodpod, $30
Photo: Amazon

When I was a little kid, I—like many other little kids—had a security blanket, and I became accustomed to falling asleep by sort of draping said security blanket over my eyes. I can’t tell you why it was so soothing to drift off with a blanket directly on my face, I can only tell you that it gave me a sense of peace that I can now only dream of. But as the years wore on, my blanket became smaller (don’t get me started on the dentist who recommended my mom CUT my blanket into a small square in order to get me to stop putting it in my mouth and ruining my teeth), riddled with holes, threadbare, and eventually, was lost completely—not to mention, I started getting to an age where it was highly un-cool to flaunt your blankie at sleepovers, and sleep-away camp, and college, and such.

But man, did I sleep well back them.

Now that I’m grown up in the traditional sense, I miss the calm-inducing feeling of having that blanket over my eyes more than ever. Honestly, adults need security blankets more than kids do! Whereas I used to fear a fictional monster hiding in my closet, or something, now I have very real nightmares of Roth IRAs and health insurance deductibles keeping me up at night.

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Now, you might be thinking, lady, get yourself a damn sleep mask, and what I will say to you is no. Most sleep masks are terrible because of one extremely uncomfortable component: The elastic strap that keeps the mask attached to your face. There’s no way I could fall asleep with what basically amounts to a big rubber band squeezing my head—believe me, I’ve tried.

There is one sleep mask, however, that solves the shortcomings of all other sleep masks, and that is the nodpod.

I can’t even tell you how I came across the nodpod—honestly, it’s all a blur. I got into a bad habit of purchasing pretty much any sleep mask that I thought had the potential to solve my rampant insomnia (spoiler: all but one didn’t work), so I assume I was served an Amazon nodpod recommendation based on my search history. As a big believer in the weighted blanket trend, what I do remember is seeing the words “Weighted Sleep Mask” in the description and smashing that “Add to Cart” button so fast, it didn’t even register that the thing cost $30.

I bought the gray one, but it comes in a half dozen colors.
Graphic: Chelsea Stone

The machine-washable nodpod features cooling jersey cotton on one side and warm microfleece on the other, but both sides are delightfully soft and cozy. Most notably, the mask boasts four microbead-containing “pods” that are sectioned off from each other to avoid the beads all gathering on one end or the other. The weight isn’t absolutely crushing—I’d say it feels more like a long beanbag than an actual 20-pound weighted blanket. And instead of an elastic strap, the ends of the nodpod are just two wide pieces of fabric, one of which has a hole through which you can thread the other so it’s gently hugging your head, as opposed to gripping it.

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But to be honest, I almost never utilize that closure function. I prefer to just drape the nodpod over by eyes, and let me tell you, it puts me right to sleep. Sure, by the time I wake up in the morning, it’s MIA in my bed somewhere. But I always know it’s there if I need it, kind of like, say, a security blanket?