About Manta Sleep Mask
With a unique design that promises to comfortably fit 99 percent of face shapes, the Manta Sleep mask aims to improve the quality of your sleep, especially if you're a traveler, night owl, or just someone who struggles with getting good rest when you need it.
In total, the team behind the sleep mask consists of industrial designers with over 10 years of combined experience. Before they even started designing the mask, though, the website indicates they tested dozens of third-party sleep masks over the course of several years to determine exactly what’s missing from the pack, and then addressing these needs with Manta.
And while they only had a prototype in place when launching their 2017 Kickstarter campaign, it appears these design differences struck a nerve with those of us who are in search of a better night’s sleep. As of the time of this writing, Manta had earned the makers more than $475K—shattering their initial goal of just $15,000.
Initial success aside, in order to determine if Manta is truly the sleep mask of your dreams, we’ll first need to take a look at how the device functions. From there, we’ll dive deeper into what makes it unique and explore how effective these masks are when it comes to improving sleep quality.
How Does Manta Sleep Work?
According to the manufacturer's marketing materials, Manta Sleep utilizes a modular design in order to achieve a reported 100 percent blackout (no light penetration).
This design involves two memory foam eye contours that can be moved horizontally along corresponding Velcro strips, delivering a customized fit the company claims will comfortably accommodate 99 percent of users. Manta’s contours are also designed so that you can open your eyes and blink inside the chamber, without your eyelashes rubbing against them.
When it’s time to get some shuteye, you’ll start by adjusting Manta’s eye contours to your preferred distance for optimal light blackout. Then, strap the band around your head and secure it using the soft micro-Velcro included on the back. The manufacturer claims this is a key feature in Sleep Manta’s design, since it will not pull hair during use.
In the future, their Kickstarter page indicated this modular design could also allow the implementation of cooling and warming gel around the eyes, bone conduction headphones, and eye massagers.
Compared to traditional eye masks, Manta features several meaningfully different design elements, including their modular FreeFit memory foam eye contours, wide elastic band that won’t leave skin indentations, and micro-Velcro that won’t catch hair. Image credit: Manta Sleep
Because of its current blackout level and comfort, the company indicates that Manta can be used in a variety of situations outside of the bedroom, including when traveling, when you’re in need of a quick 30-minute power nap, and even when meditating.
Clearly, Manta Sleep implements several unique design features. In general, though, have sleep masks been clinically shown to positively impact sleep?
Are Eye Masks Effective For Improving Sleep?
Can sleep masks truly help give you more restful moments in life, or are they ultimately more hype than substance?
According to this article from LIVESTRONG, sleep masks can impact our sleep-wake cycle, which responds to (among other things) changes in light levels. In other words, light can make us feel awake, while darkness can make us feel sleepy.
As perhaps a direct measure of this, the 2010 Chinese study cited in the article showed that intensive care patients who wore a sleep mask and earplugs had more melatonin in their systems, a hormone that plays a big role in regulating sleep.
It stands to reason, then, that—with or without the use of earplugs—sleep masks might indeed be able to help ensure a better night’s rest. Granted, not all options are made equally, which we’ll talk more about in a second. But first, what will you pay for Manta?
How Much Does Manta Sleep Cost?
Since Manta’s Kickstarter campaign ended, customers can still place orders through the company’s Indiegogo page, which had earned nearly $600K at the time of writing (estimated shipping date September 2017). Pledge options included:
- 1x Manta Mask: $29
- 2x Manta Masks (Special): $39
- 2x Manta Masks (Normal): $49
- 4x Manta Masks: $69
Each order comes with a pair of memory foam earplugs and a carrying case to hold everything inside.
All products ordered through Indiegogo come with a 10-day refund policy—but keep in mind that this only applies if the product hasn’t shipped and the campaign hasn’t ended.
What Makes Manta Sleep Different From Other Sleep Masks?
Despite blocking out light, helping you to avoid surrounding distractions, and potentially improving sleep, eye masks aren’t always a comfortable option. This is because many traditional sleep masks utilize a thin elastic band that fits around the user’s head, which might not size appropriately, thereby making it uncomfortable and allowing excess light through.
Furthermore, most sleep masks attach this elastic band to a relatively thin single eye pad that offers nothing in the way of adjustability. As a result, it can press against eyes, not allow users to blink when in use, and even leave unattractive lines and indentations in your skin—sometimes for hours after you’ve woken up.
Comparatively, while we didn’t test the device ourselves, Manta really seems to shine by offering thoughtfully designed features focused on maximizing comfort and functionality.
Users can open their eyes and blink when in place, the eye counters can adjust to fit nearly any face (not to mention that they promise to deliver a complete blackout), and the wide, adjustable strap seems like it would comfortably keep things in place while you sleep, without leaving behind lines and indentations.
However, you’ll pay a higher price for Manta’s features, since traditional sleep masks can often be found for as little as $5 through local retailers. This availability could also help you avoid S&H charges and immediately put something in your hands if you’re looking for results as fast as possible.
Where does all of this leave you in your quest for better sleep?
Our Bottom Line About the Manta Sleep Mask
Based on what we learned from the company’s website and their crowdfunding pages, Manta seems to address most of the functional problems that can make traditional eye masks uncomfortable and ineffective for improving sleep.
Yes, you’ll pay a meaningfully higher price for Manta, and you'll also have to wait until shipping commences in September—but in the end, it’s up to you whether or not it’s possible to put a price tag (along with a bit of patience) on a better night’s sleep.
And despite this higher price and longer waiting period, Indiegogo (the only site where Manta could be ordered at the time of our research) only provides a limited 10-day refund policy. In other words, we’d recommend making absolutely sure you’re committed to the order before choosing a pledge option.
Outside of these caveats, Manta Sleep seems to represent a whole new concept in eye masks, which could foreseeably change the way you sleep. Be sure to bookmark this page, which we’ll update soon after the product’s release.