Header image courtesy of Ostrich Pillow
Originally published by Gigi Wong. Last updated by Alisa Chau.
In improving people’s quality of life, the wellness world has put out numerous innovations and is leading the way when it comes to weird and practical products. From a pillow that allows you to snooze at ease whenever and wherever you desire to the coffee brewing machine that doubles as an alarm clock and aims to start your day in the most refreshing manner, here are some wacky wellness products that actually work.
Hong Kong’s unhealthy obsession with demanding OT schedules aside, we could always use a bit more sleep, couldn’t we? Lucky for us, local health-tech company Silentmode has launched the Powernap Mask (US$179), an immersive headset that harnesses the benefits of napping, so you can rest up and be your best self. Studies show that taking a nap can relax your body, helping to build up our natural coping mechanism to fight stress and boost productivity.
With an appearance akin to a VR headset, the mask is built with a high-quality audio device you can comfortably lay on. It’s linked with an app, which not only tells you when it’s time to nap but also customises your smart napping program. Put the mask on to transfer yourself to a 100 percent blackout state (both visually and audially). It offers audio solutions that range from the sound of monastery chants to the atmosphere of calming rain—or you can choose to play any music on your Spotify account. The beautiful soundscapes and snug memory foam ensure that you can rest in style anywhere.
Are ordinary water battles not quite your style? Don’t worry, here’s a fabulous and aesthetically pleasing upgrade that’s also good for your body and mind (with a little bit of mystical faith thrown in). Made of high-quality, pollutant-free glass, ViA’s Gemwater Bottle (starting from HK$770) comes with an exchangeable bottom called a GemPod, which is filled with an exquisite selection of precious gemstones.
But what does it actually do? Gems are said to deliver traditional naturopathic benefits. The ViA Wellness GemPod (with a blend of amethyst, rose quartz, and clear quartz), for instance, can stimulate and soothe the mind, foster tranquillity, and support healthy and radiant skin.
Let’s be real, the pollution in Hong Kong isn’t going anywhere, but we still need to breathe somehow. So why not with wellness products focused on oxygen production? Made in the UK, SoeMac (starting from £419) is a small, non-invasive household device that provides an alternative oxygen therapy. It was made for people who have issues with their breathing, sleeping, or energy levels in general, where their bodies are not producing the right amount of oxygen at the cellular level.
SoeMac works by drawing in air and producing a bio-usable form of energised oxygen, known as Singlet Oxygen Energy (SOE). In other words, it boosts the quality of oxygen you breathe in while you sleep at night, which, in turn, helps to improve the quality of your sleep and restore your body. Simply put it near your bed and turn it on before you go to sleep. It might look like a battery power bank, but it’s a CE-registered, Class 1 medical device, so it’s safe to use.
You may scoff at the idea that coffee-related things can be considered wellness products, but that’s probably just because you don’t have a coffee addiction. Jokes aside, if you like waking up to the whiff of coffee, here’s something for ya. Barisieur (£345) is a coffee machine slash alarm clock. It wakes you up to the invigorating aroma of freshly-brewed coffee or tea at your chosen time.
Of course, you have to go through a few simple steps every night before you go to sleep. It involves filling a glass vessel with enough water for your morning drink, followed by adding freshly ground coffee into the filter. Then, set your alarm clock time and brew time for your drink, which can be before, at, or after the alarm rings.
It’s an extra step to go through for a cup of joe, but Barisieur is said to be backed by the psychology behind sleep and relaxation. Research posits that adopting a nightly routine can encourage more restful sleep, whilst gently stimulating one’s senses can lead to a better awakening. We can’t deny that it introduces a whole new way to wake up to a fresh, new day.
If you wear glasses, you must be familiar with the fact that cleaning them is a rather troublesome task. Wet or dry wipes sometimes do the trick, but do they really clean the dirt out of it? Not really, because let’s face it, you’re just wiping the lenses, not the oil stains and dust that settle on the glasses frames and nose pads. You could make a visit to your optician’s to get them cleaned, but ain’t nobody got time for that on a regular basis.
Recognising the cleanliness issues facing the bespectacled, Smartclean (HK$588) has designed a portable ultrasonic cleaner. Analogous to professional cleaning used in optical shops, it produces 45 kilohertz of ultrasonic vibrations that agitate the water, thus producing numerous bubbles. These bubbles travel all over the water and burst out to create shock waves that remove dirt and greasy smudges from glasses. The light and convenient cleaner is certainly a life-changer for glasses wearers.
Nap lovers can revel in the fact that there is an endless amount of wellness products out there for them to try. In this case, the Ostrich Pillow (HK$833) is a cocoon-like napping “pillow” you can pull over your head that was designed for undisturbed power naps at work, lounging at home, or even while travelling. It has various openings: one for breathing and two for cuddling your hands, creating a feeling of complete comfort.
What’s more, it also blocks out light and outside noise. You might look ridiculous wearing it while you nap in public places, but the soft fabric and coated microbead filling provide so much comfort, it’s hard to care what other people think.
Hot girl summer is approaching, and spending it partying or chilling is surely preferable to being swaddled under a hot water bottle in bed all day. Up to 76 percent of women in Hong Kong experience period pain, reports YouGov, with a whopping 93 percent admitting that they were not able to function properly as a result.
More than just a sex toy, the Premium Eco vibrator (HK$1,560) can be used as a tool that helps treat painful symptoms that come up during that time of the month. This product stays silent, but the hush-hush surrounding the taboo topics of menstruation and masturbation shouldn’t have to!
A joint study validated by sexual health professionals discovered that up to 42 percent of users were able to reduce menstrual symptoms like cramps, diarrhoea, bloating, fatigue, and chills, as well as alleviate pain in the abdomen, lower back, inner thighs, and breasts. What’s more, the pieces can be disassembled, and are made from biodegradable materials, effectively making the Premium Eco the world’s most sustainable vibrator!