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Published on July 13, 2021

10 Best Sleep Masks for a Good Night’s Sleep

10 Best Sleep Masks for a Good Night’s Sleep
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Getting a good night’s sleep requires you to sleep for about eight hours each night, but many can attest that amount of sleeping hours being difficult to reach. From outside distractions to various sounds, there are tons of things that can disrupt your sleep. One of the many solutions to help with sleeping is sleep masks. They’re light and comfortable on your eyes and allow you to sleep easier regardless of the circumstances.

Choosing the best one for you among several kinds of brands can be challenging, though. As such, below are a selection of ten of the best sleep masks that are ideal for restful sleep.

Criteria for the Best Sleep Masks

Before getting to the best sleep masks, here are the criteria that I went through to select them among the other brands:

  • Ideal material – Different materials will provide different benefits to people. However, the ones selected here are either made out of cotton, silk, polyester, foam, or beads.
  • Fits well – Each of the products mentioned here is adjustable so you’ll be able to adjust them to fit your sleeping needs.
  • Compact size – These masks are purposely avoiding bulky styles as these can often be uncomfortable when turning over in your sleep.

1. Best Overall Sleep Mask: Bucky 40 Blinks Contoured Eye Mask

    If you’re looking for a mask that’s the best overall, this is the one. With the contoured design, you can easily open your eyes while wearing the mask. It’s also incredibly easy to take off and on and is safe in laundry machines, too.

    With a wide variety of colors and designs to pick from, this is by far the most reliable mask overall to consider.

    Buy 40 Blinks Contoured Eye Mask here.

    2. Best Value: Mack’s Dreamweaver Contoured Sleep Mask

      A good runner-up for the best sleep mask is this one from Mack’s. Their Dreamweaver line offers a contoured design allowing space for your eyes. The big difference between this and 40 Blinks is that this comes with its own carrying case and earplugs.

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      Pick up Mack’s Dreamweaver Contoured Sleep Mask here.

      3. Best for Back Sleepers: Mavogel Cotton Sleep Mask

        If you prefer something with a more natural feel to it, Mavogel has a cotton sleep mask line that you can try out. Due to the cotton, these masks are much softer compared to others.

        These masks are also ideal for those who sleep on their back. Depending on your position, certain materials are better based on how you sleep. These cotton masks are ideal for back sleepers as it has a flexible nose piece as well as flaps on the side.

        Buy Mavogel Cotton Sleep Mask here.

        4. Best Silk Sleep Mask: Fishers Finery Silk Sleep Mask

          Another more natural material to consider is silk. Silk is softer and can provide extra comfort for you at the cost of not blocking out light entirely. Nevertheless, sleeping with this on feels amazing, and you won’t have to worry about creases on your skin forming as you would from masks made from other materials.

          This product is great for those who sleep on their stomach and this one, in particular, is made of higher-quality silk that is strong and moisture-wicking. As an added bonus, it does have a Good Housekeeping Seal on it so if it’s ever damaged or defective within two years, you can get a full refund.

          Buy Fishers Finery Silk Sleep Mask here.

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          5. Best Weighted Sleep Mask: Gravity Weighted Sleep Mask

            The Gravity brand is known for its weighted products, mainly their weighted blankets. However, they created masks that serve the same purpose. Similar to those blankets, the pressure from them is designed to calm you down and let you fall asleep faster and let you sleep longer.

            These masks aren’t incredibly heavy or anything, weighing in at only one pound. However, it’s just heavy enough that you’ll feel it but not have it be a problem while sleeping. If you’re still not sold, the weight is evenly distributed and is made of glass beads with a micro-fiber cover over it, making it plush and cozy against your skin.

            Try out Gravity’s Weighted Sleep Mask here.

            6. Best Sleep Mask and Pillowcase Set: LUSSO Mulberry Sleep Mask

              Silk does have some perks. However, there are different grades of silk that you might not be aware of. Take this sleep mask for example. It’s made from mulberry silk, which is the highest quality silk available out there.

              This silk is longer and has more uniform fibers, making it a smoother and more durable mask compared to other silk masks.

              Try out LUSSO’s Mulberry Sleep Mask here.

              7. Best for Side Sleepers: FreshMe Handmade Cotton Sleep Mask

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                If you sleep on your side a lot, you need to have a mask that can block light while not adding too much bulk to the sides. A solid option for that is to go with FreshMe handmade cotton mask.

                The unique part of this mask is that it’s able to wrap around your head completely. You don’t have to worry about straps as the mask has a velcro back allowing you to adjust the mask around your head. It’s made of cotton so it’ll block out light, and it’s also very comfortable as it’s made from 95% organic cotton and 5% spandex.

                Purchase a FreshMe Handmade Cotton Sleep Mask here.

                8. Best for Travel: OSTRICH PILLOW Lite Travel Pillow

                  For those who travel a lot, this sleep mask is best suited for just that. Based on the brand name alone, it’s clear they make pillows and so this product encompasses both the aspects of a mask and a pillow.

                  The benefit here is that it’ll save you a good amount of luggage space if you usually pack a pillow and sleep mask separately. It’s filled with silicone micro-beads that are designed to block out any light and even sound while also providing a nice pillow.

                  It’s a little silly while wearing it, but it is practical which is all the reason we need.

                  Pick up OstrickPillow’s Lite Travel Pillow here.

                  9. Best Cooling Sleep Mask for Puffy Eyes: IMAK Compression Mask

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                    For those who get headaches, overheat, or have to deal with puffy eyes in the morning, this is the product for you. This sleep mask is unique as it has built-in ice packs to help cool you down. All you have to do is put the mask in the freezer and take it out when you’re ready to use it.

                    It also has small microbeads in them so the mask itself will feel squishy rather than hard. It’s also big enough to block out light.

                    Try out IMAK’s Compression Mask here.

                    10. Best Memory Foam Sleep Mask: Tempur-Pedic Sleep Mask

                      The final mask on our list is one made of memory foam. The perks of this material are that masks that use it can mold to your face easily. This mask from Tempur-Pedic offers that feature while also blocking out light and providing a cushion-like comfort to your head.

                      The velcro straps on the side are easy to adjust, and the plush exterior can be removed and washed separately for your convenience.

                      Pick up Tempur-Pedic’s Sleep Mask here.

                      Final Thoughts

                      Depending on the type of sleeper you are, you can find great comfort with these high-quality sleep masks. After a long day of working or playing, you deserve the best possible sleep you can get. Sometimes, you may find it hard to fall asleep immediately, especially depending on the kind of bedroom environment you have. But using one of these high-quality sleep masks may help you get the good night’s rest that you deserve.

                      More Tips on How to Get a Good Night’s Sleep

                      Featured photo credit: Kristina Petrick via unsplash.com

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                      Last Updated on July 22, 2021

                      How to Quit Drinking for a Healthier Body and Mind

                      How to Quit Drinking for a Healthier Body and Mind
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                      Has anyone ever suggested that you should cut down on your drinking or, for that matter, quit drinking alcohol out of your life completely? Have you ever felt that way on your own, especially after waking up super late for work with a pounding headache and blurred vision the day after a long night out on the town or getting down in the club?

                      Let me start by saying that I am not trying to demonize the consumption of adult alcoholic beverages. I’m the last person to judge you or anyone else for making a conscious decision to drink alcohol responsibly. Instead, as a licensed mental health counselor and certified master addiction professional, I have a professional responsibility to help my clients take greater control over their thoughts, emotions, and behaviors by gaining insight into the underlying issues that have negatively impacted their lives.

                      Is Drinking Alcohol a Problem for You?

                      First things first. Is drinking alcohol a problem for you? Since alcohol has been known to impair your judgment, you may not even realize that it is.

                      According to the 5th Edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, or more commonly referred to as the DSM-5, the universal reference guide used by mental health and addiction professionals to diagnose all substance abuse and mental health disorders, alcohol use disorder is defined as a “problematic pattern of alcohol use leading to clinically significant impairment or distress.”

                      It is manifested by experiencing at least two of the following symptoms within a 12-month period:[1]

                      1. Alcohol consumed in larger amounts or over a longer period than was intended
                      2. Persistent desire or unsuccessful efforts to cut down or control the use of alcohol
                      3. A great deal of time is spent in activities necessary to obtain, use, or recover from the effects of alcohol.
                      4. Craving or a strong desire or urge to use alcohol
                      5. Recurrent alcohol use results in a failure to fulfill major role obligations at work, school, and home.
                      6. Continued alcohol use despite persistent or recurrent social or interpersonal problems caused by or exacerbated by the effects of alcohol
                      7. Important social, occupational, or recreational activities are given up or reduced.
                      8. Recurrent alcohol use in physically hazardous situations
                      9. Alcohol use is continued despite the knowledge of having persistent or hazardous physical or psychological problems likely caused by alcohol.
                      10. Tolerance is present in which there is a need for markedly increased amounts of alcohol to achieve intoxication.
                      11. Withdrawal, as evidenced by experiencing any combination of both physical and psychological discomfort following cessation after a period of heavy or prolonged alcohol use.

                      Nevertheless, just because you may not meet the criteria for alcohol use disorder, does not mean that you should not quit drinking alcohol. Although you may appear to be able to handle your alcohol on the outside, excessive alcohol use has been shown to negatively impact your overall health. Just like nicotine, alcohol is a habit-forming drug.

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                      However, unlike the stimulant properties found within nicotine, alcohol is classified as a depressant. It essentially slows down your central nervous system’s ability to effectively process feelings, emotions, and information.

                      With your defenses down, alcohol can make you feel more emotionally sensitive, sad, vulnerable, and depressed—for example, with regard to bringing back feelings associated with past traumas that you may have worked hard to overcome, or perhaps those in which you may have never had the time to properly address at all.

                      A study published by the National Institute for Health showed that alcoholics were somewhere between 60 and 120 times more likely to complete suicide than those free from psychiatric illness.[2]  Additionally, although having a couple of cocktails may make it easier for you to talk to a stranger as it lowers your inhibitions, it can also negatively impact your judgment—for example, by drinking and driving.

                      Additionally, alcohol has been known to make people more argumentative and belligerent, especially when they are confronted about the issue. A study published by the World Health Organization estimates that approximately 55% of domestic violence perpetrators were drinking alcohol prior to the assault and that women who were abused were 15 times more likely to abuse alcohol.[3]

                      When it comes to your physical health, there is an overabundance of ways in which excessive drinking is bad for your body. Since alcohol provides little or no nutritional value and is often combined with high-calorie mixers, it can lead to obesity.

                      People who drink alcohol in excess are generally less physically active, thereby increasing the risk of heart disease and stroke.[4] Additionally, excessive drinking inflames the pancreas, making it more difficult for it to secrete insulin, thereby contributing to diabetes.

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                      Furthermore, excessive alcohol use can lead to liver damage, such as cirrhosis, in which the body is unable to properly remove waste products from the blood leaving the stomach and intestines. As a result, people with cirrhosis of the liver may appear jaundiced, swollen, and confused. A recent study published by Forbes indicated that even moderate drinking tracked with decreases in both grey and white brain matter, essentially interfering with brain functioning as it alters the brain’s chemistry and composition.[5]

                      With all of that being said, if you feel that alcohol use may be getting in the way of being able to maintain a healthy lifestyle, I recommend that you take a moment to consider these six simple ways to quit drinking alcohol to achieve a healthier mind, body, and soul.

                      1. Stay Away From the Bottle

                      If you happen to be a recreational drinker—someone who has a couple of drinks here and there, every so often or once in a blue moon—and you want to quit drinking alcohol altogether, the easiest way to quit drinking alcohol is just to stay as far away from it as possible. I mean it’s really that simple, isn’t it? Not so fast! Alcohol is everywhere, from the supermarket to the soccer field.

                      Even with all of the potential risks, people continue to drink alcohol at any number of social gatherings, business meetings, and even religious ceremonies, activities that are in many cases almost impossible to avoid completely. Sporting events, for example, all seem to be sponsored by sleek, sexy, and, at the same time, remarkably socially conscious breweries.

                      Nevertheless, although alcohol is everywhere, the next time you go out with your friends to your favorite hotspot, try ordering tonic water with lime, or perhaps even the virgin version of your favorite cocktail instead—like a pina colada or strawberry daiquiri—so you can keep the umbrella and just get rid of the rum.

                      2. Set Expectations With Others

                      Unless you are prepared to cut ties with all of your friends and family members who like to drink alcohol, be prepared to set certain expectations with them when it comes to drinking when you are around them.

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                      First, let them know that you are not judging them but rather, making a personal choice not to drink alcohol. Then, set clear boundaries with them by letting them know whether or not you are comfortable being around them when they choose to drink. Remember, you are the most powerful gatekeeper of everyone and everything that surrounds you.

                      3. Own Your Issues!

                      The first step to quitting alcohol—or quitting the use of any habit-forming mood-altering substance for that matter—is to first admit that you have a problem with it, whatever the problem may be. I suggest that you first start by identifying how alcohol has either already affected your life, or how it could do so in the future if you continue to drink.

                      Take a personal inventory of everything important to you, such as your relationship with your family and your faith, as well as the condition of your health and your personal finances. Then, carefully consider how alcohol could be negatively impacting each item. Set aside some personal quality time to journal all of your thoughts in black and white to help you see the situation from a more objective point of view. Take it from me, it’s not easy to admit that you have a problem, but once you do, it can be a very liberating feeling.

                      4. Ask for Help

                      Once you have admitted to yourself that you have a problem with alcohol, you can then admit it to someone else, preferably someone who can help you process your feelings and concerns in a safe, constructive, and non-judgmental way.

                      Although family and friends may be very supportive, you may want to work with a therapist who can offer a more objective perspective along with a variety of tools to not only help you stay sober but also process and ultimately work through any underlying issues that may have caused you to drink in the first place.

                      Furthermore, in the unfortunate event that you have become physically dependent on alcohol to make it through the day, medical supervision may be needed to help you manage any combination of withdrawal symptoms, including restlessness, anxiety, chills, nausea, and even potentially life-threatening seizures.

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                      5. Join a Support Group

                      When you are trying to defend yourself against a cunning, baffling, and powerful opponent, there is usually strength in numbers. Beyond reaching out for professional help to address any underlying issues that may be holding you or anyone else back from staying sober, joining a support group is an excellent way to strengthen your foundation for recovery from alcoholism.

                      Although caring friends and family may be able to provide you with unconditional love, members of your support group may also be able to offer a much more objective step-building approach for long-term sobriety. Fortunately, there are support group meetings available all over the world, you just have to look for one that meets your needs.

                      6. Make a Commitment to Stay Sober

                      After you have owned your issues and learned the tools to stay sober, the next step is to commit yourself to actually staying sober. Breaking a bad habit does not usually happen overnight. Typically, it’s a process that requires time and tenacity. There is no exception when it comes to quitting alcohol.

                      Nevertheless, many people find themselves frantically trying to stop drinking after any combination of unfortunate, uncomfortable, and sometimes unforgiving events, such as being fired from a job, having an argument with a loved one, getting caught driving under the influence, and experiencing medical complications associated with alcohol use, such as liver failure.

                      Final Thoughts

                      In the end, If you truly want to quit drinking, make an open and honest commitment to yourself that you will not only put away the bottle but that you will also take out the tools every day to stay mentally, physically, and spiritually sober.

                      More on How to Quit Drinking

                      Featured photo credit: Zach Kadolph via unsplash.com

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