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Growing up in the suburbs of Los Angeles, I have distinct memories of encountering luxuries beyond anything you’d usually find in the Silver household. I’ll never forget spotting those first generation car-phones in the center console of my friend’s dad’s Mercedes-Benz. Or the time my mom took me to the flagship Niketown store off Rodeo Drive and treated me to a brand new pair of Nikes. Those early brushes with luxury stick with you forever.
Alas, we all grow up and with hard work comes access to the trappings of luxury previously out of reach. Leasing a brand new car with your own money after driving the family hand-me-down Pontiac to the ground. Saying ‘Yes!’ to a treat-yourself-first-class upgrade on a cross country flight. Or adding-to-cart that pair of premium denim whose MSRP might make your parents cringe.
How people choose to splurge with their money has always fascinated me. I’m regularly drawn to a recurring Twitter prompt in my timeline: “What’s one purchase under $XYZ amount that has changed your life?” I sift through the replies hunting for a gem I can incorporate in my own life. “The Herman Miller chair saved my back!” “This neck massager was pricey but totally worth it.” Several Twitter users’ replies about a sleep company stopped me in my tracks: Eight Sleep, the advanced technology company delivering better sleep through temperature control, has a legion of superfans flocking to social media to proclaim this product has, in fact, changed their lives forever. I was lucky to get my hands on the product, and spoiler alert – it’s changed mine, too.
Up Close And Personal With The Pod Pro Cover
Eight Sleep, which launched in 2014, has two flagship products on the market (to be transparent, neither is particularly budget friendly): The Pod Pro Cover mattress topper ($1695 for a Queen), and the Pod Pro Mattress ($2845 for a Queen). My fiance and I opted for the Pod Pro Cover given we’ve been quite happy with our existing mattress (from another DTC darling Tuft & Needle). Both products offer the same utility – dual temperature regulation dynamically controlled between 55 and 115 degrees fahrenheit. Paired with advanced sleep-tracking capabilities, and a companion app to track sleep performance and make adjustments, Eight Sleep is the most comprehensive tech-enabled sleep product on the market today.
Unboxing the Pod Pro Cover is very straightforward. Setup takes mere minutes: place the cover on your existing mattress and connect it to “the Hub” (about the size of an old school PC tower) that sits on the ground alongside your bed. This contains the water chamber, which you’ll fill with distilled water and a few drops of hydrogen peroxide to keep bacteria from growing in the water supply. After a few-hour initial calibration process where water flows through the entirety of the Pro Cover, you’re ready to start sleeping like a pro.
Active Grid + Intelligent SmartTemp = Better Sleep
Core to Eight Sleep’s offering is the brand’s patented Active Grid technology. A thin artery-like system of cubes sits within the Pro Cover, transporting warm or cool water from the Hub to deliver the precise temperature requested. Within this grid you'll also find a system of sensors that keeps tabs on biometrics throughout the night: how often you toss and turn, your heart rate variability (HRV), and other data points that inform your nightly Sleep Score.
Eight Sleep has spent nearly 10 years perfecting its Intelligent SmartTemp AI, an algorithm rich technology that can predict down to the second the optimum temperature tuned for your body and environment where the Pod Pro is located. The new Smart Temp goes beyond just getting to know you — it also benchmarks your settings compared to what Eight Sleep learned from other users, using that data to recommend a unique-to-you profile that yields optimal sleep.
The tech is the real deal – but what does that mean for the sleep experience? To use the word sublime would genuinely not be an overstatement. It’s hard to put into words the feeling of cool water circulating underneath your mattress. To be clear, this is not a ‘water bed’ from the 80s and 90s – there’s no feeling of ‘floating’ on water or anything along those lines. But the temperature controlled water flowing through the Active Grid turns your mattress into a customizable temperature heaven. It’s a complete and total game changer – this luxury tried once becomes a necessity the moment you’ve experienced it.
What’s perhaps even more powerful than the tech itself is the dual-zone feature of both the Pod Pro Cover and Pod Pro. I tend to run a bit hot. My fiance, on the other hand, loves to sleep warm. We used to quarrel over the number of blankets and what type of duvet to use. We’ve now achieved sleep… peace; a feat that can’t be understated. I shit you not, this product is going to save marriages.
SleepOS: Your Personal Digital Sleep Coach
I’ve never really had trouble sleeping consistently. So long as I stick to my routine, I have pretty sound sleep fitness. I share that just to say that I wasn’t looking for Eight Sleep to solve pre-existing sleep challenges or problems. For those that are looking for additional support, Eight Sleep’s SleepOS is a companion app designed to help improve your sleep performance over time.
Eight Sleep’s integrated technology allows the inputs of your nightly sleep patterns – including heart rate, HRV, and respiratory rate – to be tracked without syncing wearable devices like the Whoop or Oura ring. There are several other slick bells and whistles within the app – including something Eight Sleep calls ‘GentleRise’ – a built-in vibration and thermal alarm system that lives within the Pod Pro Cover itself. Say goodbye to that nightstand alarm clock and its trauma inducing alarm chime.
A (Sleepy) Love Affair For The Long Run
Months into our use of the Eight Sleep Pod Pro Cover, we’re madly in love. I simply can’t see a scenario where I’d want to live in a world without my Eight Sleep. In fact – a few nights back I got into bed and noticed something was different; something was off. I pulled up the app and noticed the Pod Pro Cover was ‘offline’. A quick troubleshoot and I noticed the power strip behind my bed had come loose. It’s been chilly in LA as of late – and feeling that momentary lapse in the warm cocoon that has become our bed was all the evidence I needed: I’m never going back to life without Eight Sleep.
The bottom line for me – money may not buy you ‘happiness,’ as the saying goes, but it can buy you an Eight Sleep. The rest will work itself out.
Five More Reasons to Love Eight Sleep:
1. Apple Health integration: Learn how your movement and activity contribute to the quality of your sleep, and sync your sleep data with any other app that uses Apple Health.
2. Financing friendly: If you’re facing sticker shock, you can finance your Eight Sleep purchase with Affirm, with qualified applicants paying 0% APR for 24 months.
4. Rave worthy: Eight Sleep is beloved by Men’s Health (2021 Sleep Award), Time (2018 & 2019 Best Inventions), and Fast Company (2019 Most Innovative Companies).
5. Risk-free sleeping: Enjoy a 30 night trial of the Pod Pro Cover and a 100 night trial of the Pod Pro Mattress with free shipping and free returns.