New timed sleep mask the answer to sleep problems?

The Napwell napping mask (Kickstarter/napwell)

The Napwell napping mask (Kickstarter/napwell)

Relaxnews

, Last Updated: 3:21 PM ET

Napwell is a sleeping mask that uses in-built lights to mimic the sunrise, so that wearers wake up naturally and energized.

As its name suggests, Napwell's sole purpose is to help you nap well. A mask that blocks out all light to make sure its wearer is not disturbed, it uses a built-in timer to know when it's time to rise and shine again.

But rather than rousing you from your slumber with a blaring alarm, Napwell uses gentle, diffuse lighting, designed to mimic the sunrise. As a result, you wake up slowly, but properly, so that when the alarm finally does sound, you're already wide awake, brain engaged and ready to go, rather than suffering from sleep inertia -- the scientific term for the grogginess felt when you're forced to wake up quickly during the sleep cycle.

Designed by engineers at MIT, Stanford, and Harvard Medical School, the mask is battery powered but doesn't use Bluetooth, need an internet connection, or require a smartphone app so that it really can be used anywhere, be it for power napping in the office, trying to get some rest on a flight, or simply to get a good night's sleep at home.

Currently in the working prototype stage, the Napwell is now on Kickstarter trying to raise $30,000 to aid a production run its makers hope will begin in September 2014. Early-bird backer offers include a Napwell mask for a $50 pledge or, for $100, to become part of the product's pre-launch beta testing team.


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