I am a person who needs total darkness to sleep. And when I say total darkness, I mean total darkness — even the slightest ray of sun peeking through a curtain will leave me wide awake at 5 a.m. But maintaining a dark space isn’t as simple as installing blackout shades: my boyfriend is a graphic designer with strict deadlines, meaning he tends to work late at the night at his large desktop computer, which radiates a bright blue hue. I, on the other hand, like to be sleep-ready by 11 p.m.
Which means eye masks have become an essential, much-obsessed-over part of my life. But, as any eye mask wearer will tell you, they are not all created equal. Far from it, in fact. I’ve tried many — a beautiful, baby pink, silky one from Slip, which was comfortable and crease-free, but wasn’t great at blocking light (and easily slipped off my face if I jostled around in my sleep). A more rigid “Unimi” mask that came highly recommended on Reddit was better at keeping light out, but I found it uncomfortably tight and headache-inducing.
I was complaining about this issue to my family, when my sister-in-law stopped me mid-sentence. She told me that my brother’s insomnia and late-night Netflix habit had been ruining her sleep for years — and that no mask had helped until she found the “MZOO” on Amazon, a $16 memory foam eye mask that, she explained, was both exceptionally comfortable and incredible at keeping light out. The reviews on Amazon were equally rapturous (among others: “It really is THAT good!!!”, “I have never slept better or longer”, and “I wish I had found this years ago!”).
I’m grateful that I tried this mask for the first time on a Friday because I ended up sleeping until noon the following day (for context, I generally rise at 6:30). Frankly, the mask exceeded my expectations about ten times over. As it turns out, memory foam is the perfect material for an eye mask: just as a good memory foam mattress forms to your body, this memory foam eye mask forms perfectly to your eyes, sealing them from any outside light. It also happens to be thick, bouncy and cushiony — so if you happen to sleep on your stomach, like me, it almost feels like resting your face on another mini pillow. The mask is built with little concave cups for your eyes (so you can comfortably blink while wearing it) that actually stay concave throughout the night, no matter how much you move around. And it has a buckle strap instead of velcro, meaning you can make it as tight or loose as you’d like, without it ripping out your hair while you sleep.
I recently put the MZOO to the ultimate test: an overnight at my parent’s infamously bright and curtain-less home, with my boyfriend, who would be working late on his computer in the same room. I slept soundly through the night, and well into the next morning.
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