Welcome to the Insomniacs Club, where we’ll try absolutely anything to get a few hours of extra sleep. From lavender lotion to turkey burgers, we’ve become your official shut-eye guinea pig. So when we heard about the Dodow ($59), a fancy new digital sleep lamp from France that was developed by insomniacs, we knew we had to give it a whirl.
Here’s the deal: The Dodow is a flat, battery-powered disc that sits on your nightstand. When you’re ready for bed, switch off all the lights and tap the Dodow to turn it on. It projects a glowing blue light on your ceiling that pulses slowly—when it expands, take a slow, deep breath from your diaphragm. When it contracts, release your breath. Continue timing your breathing to the light until you drift off. (You can set it to automatically shut off after eight or 20 minutes.)
How does it work? Well, one of our favorite sleep hacks is to keep your eyes open, because the act of trying to sleep might actually be messing with your body’s involuntary physiological process. When you do this and slow your breathing down to Dodow’s six respirations per minute, it kicks off your body’s natural resting state. Not to mention you’re watching a hypnotizing blue light, so your insomnia is basically toast.
A few of our office insomniacs put Dodow to the test. Total shocker: Not one person stayed awake past the eight-minute mark. And OK, let’s say you do the full 20 minutes of breathing and you’re still awake. At the very least, you got in a really great meditation sesh. We’ll take a little mindfulness over tossing and turning any night of the week.