The Problem with Pillows (And How We Fixed Them)|
I have a confession to make: I’ve become a bit pillow-obsessed. I feel sorry for my family; they have to listen to me rattle off the benefits of spinal alignment and moisture-wicking and all kinds of things I’m sure they don’t totally care about.
But I just can’t get over the fact that something as simple as a pillow changed years of not sleeping. Granted, my oldest son’s transition from insomniac to well rested is a bit more involved than my story, but the pillow got us pointed in the right direction for him—and that’s a story for another day.
I just keep coming back to the quality of this pillow, to how very different it seems from everything else on the market. In a world where businesses are infamous for stopping at “good enough to get your money” I’m fascinated by what drove iSense Sleep’s CEO to keep going until he created pillow perfection. What was the thought process that went into this pillow?
Busy as he is, Paul Longman was kind enough to spend some time explaining the way most pillows are made, the problems he saw with pillows in general, and the solutions he found for those problems. He’s cool like that. Anyway, here’s what he had to say.
We set out to build something really special, something that was adaptable to all different types of people of all different shapes and sizes. Something that from the comfort of your own home, you can adapt to suit your needs. This is the bed for your head, so you want to take the time to get it right, and that can really only be done from the comfort of your own home.
What’s in a typical premium pillow?
One of the bestselling pillows out there uses a process called crumbing. They take basic polyethylene foam and run it through a machine that chops it up into all different shapes and sizes. We’re talking different types and grades of foam—even the skins that would normally be discarded from the mattress-making process are used in the pillow.
This makes for a lot of inconsistency. The best part of a great pillow is consistency, which you just can’t get when you dice the material up like that.
We took a different approach to our pillow’s filling. Rather than using different grades of foam from different supply sources, we took a block of material and precision cross-cut it into what we call little nuggets of blue-gold. It’s basically a block shape with little fingers on the end. What they do is give you that nice, soft take-up so it feels comfortable when you lay your head on it, but when those fingers compress, they offer support.
What you wind up with is a consistent filling that’s beautiful, silky-smooth, and amazing to touch.
Why is it speckled?
It’s a gel-infused memory foam—premium grade foam that’s been infused with little beads of gel to pull moisture away from your neck and your head.
What are those little fibers mixed in with the foam?
The problem with memory foam that’s been cut into pieces is that when it warms up, it sticks together, creating lumps in the pillow, which creates discomfort. So we spun polyester fiber in with the nuggets to keep them from sticking together. It was a simple fix to a serious problem with memory foam. The fiber allows the pieces to float around the pillow, making sure they stay even so you remain comfortable without lumps in the pillow.
Can you explain your approach to adjustability?
iSense Sleep is really all about adjustability. Side sleeper, back sleeper, stomach sleeper, broad shoulders, narrow shoulders—all of that matters when choosing a pillow. When you buy a pillow online or in the store, you just have to hope you get it right. Our philosophy is that you buy the product, you get it home, and THEN you make the adjustments night after night until you get it dialed in to your personal needs. That’s the essence of what our brand stands for.
To do that, we made it easy to change the loft; all you have to do is remove some of the filling—equal amounts from each side—zip it back up, and store the pieces in a bag in case you want to add them back later. A little bit of effort up front makes a huge difference. Spend four or five nights getting it right for you and you’ll have a lifetime of enjoyment out of it.
Does the cover matter?
We really wanted to make a first-class product, so we put a lot of thought into this outer cover. From the moment you pick it up, touch it, run your hands over it, you can tell it’s amazing.
The cover helps smooth out the surface. It’s made with a premium outer fabric that’s treated to keep it cool, too. The inner lining of the cover is something called aqua fiber that’s designed to pull moisture away from your neck and your head, again, helping to cool and wick away the moisture to help you get a comfortable night of sleep. It’s also wrapped in a breathable band that allows air to get in and around the pillow, which is just another property to help keep the pillow cool so it doesn’t heat up and give you sweats in the neck.
When you put it all together as one, slide the inner pillow into the outer cover, the combination is something that we’re very proud to say is like nothing else on the market. It was designed purposefully to solve problems, and the testimonies coming in so far are second to none.
And it really is second to none. When you see and feel this pillow, you can just tell the difference. When you take the time to adjust your pillow and really make it your own… it just gets better. It’s hard to convey the difference in quality on a blog, so Paul’s encouraged me to take it to the streets. Unfiltered, unscripted, just ask the public what they think. So look for that to come in the next few weeks. Until then, happy sleeping!