What's the Best Napping Gear?

There have never been so many innovative solutions for sleeping in public

Jan 6, 2015
Outside Magazine
ostrich pillow napping gear

The Ostrich Pillow allows for napping in all kinds of environments, as long as you aren't self-conscious.    Photo: Courtesy of Ostrich Pillow


Studies have shown that napping can boost your productivity for the rest of the day. Nap well and you’ll be happier and more efficient at the office. But oversleep and you’ll feel groggier than when you went to bed. These six pieces will help you nap right.

Ostrich Pillow ($99)

  Photo: Courtesy of Ostrich Pillow

Yes, the Ostrich Pillow looks ridiculous, but this wearable pillow-blanket hybrid envelops your whole head with cozy padding made from polystyrene microbeads. The Ostrich Pillow features holes for your face and hands, making it perfect for an impromptu, semiprivate desk nap.

Bucky 40 Blinks Sleep Mask ($13)

  Photo: Bucky

At 9.5 inches long by 3.5 inches wide, Bucky’s 40 Blinks Sleep Mask is large enough to block out light, while the subtle cupping around your eyes makes the mask feel less oppressive than some of its competitors. The extremely adjustable strap made from two Velcro-connected elastic bands allows the Bucky to accommodate a wide range of head sizes.

REI Plaid Fleece Blanket ($30)

  Photo: REI

A lightweight blanket like this one from REI will stave off a chill during naptime but won’t warm you up enough to lull you into a deep sleep, which can leave you feeling groggy afterward. 

Mack Pillow Soft Silicone Earplugs (From $5)

  Photo: Mack's Earplugs

We’ve used Mack’s Pillow Soft earplugs to prevent surfer’s ear for years because they’re 100 percent waterproof and dirt cheap. And the seal that keeps cold water from hammering your eardrums in the ocean also helps block out background noise that can interrupt a nap.

Sleep Cycle Power Nap App ($2)

  Photo: Northcube AB

The Sleep Cycle Power Nap app comes programmed with 15 soothing sounds to wake you up after a nap. It harnesses the accelerometer in your iPhone to determine when your sleep cycle is at its most efficient, and then uses that information to wake you at the optimal time.

ENO SingleNest Hammock ($60)

  Photo: Eagles Nest Outfitters

We love ENO hammocks for their comfortable design, durability, and feathery weight. While the Single Nest won’t help nappers in most parts of the United States during winter, we recommend investing in this 16-ounce nylon shelter for when temperatures rise. Few naps are as serene as those taken while swinging in a hammock, ideally near an alpine lake that you hiked to.

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