Cool sleeping products aim to stop those tropical nightmaresWith the full force of the summer heat due to hit in the next few weeks, retail companies are coming up with inventive products targeting people who toss and turn on those hot and humid tropical nights.
Shinsegae International's home furnishing brand Jaju offers mattress toppers that claim to help its users sleep well. Jaju’s toppers are structured to assist the sleeper’s body in the most effective way, according to the company, varying the cushion’s density to fit the body.
Another home furnishing brand, Daegu 1988 Home & Furnishing, launched an Ice Cream Bedding series, a set of rayon bedding which the company claims has a softer, and therefore cooler, texture than other bedding using the same material. Rayon is a lightweight manufactured fiber frequently used to produce summer bedding.
Evezary, another bedding company, is promoting its line of summer pillows made with seven different materials. Pillows made with buckwheat husks are recommended for customers looking for breathable fabric, and polysome pillows for customers with dust allergies.
Some companies claim to have products that can lower one’s body temperature. Bedding company Sleep&Sleep launched a line of toppers and blankets made with a fabric that the company says can cool one’s skin.
If you need a more extreme solution, Lotte Department Store has started selling an oxygen capsule, equipped with sleep-inducing lights and oxygen generators which the retailer claims to help alleviate sleep disorders. Users actually sleep inside the white pod which can automatically turn off its lights when a person crawls in and shuts the door.
The retailer also plans to open a special space in its department store dedicated to sleep-related products on Friday, with professional sleep consultants on site to recommend products and help visitors experience them.
Evezary partnered with Ajou University Hospital in Suwon, Gyeonggi, to open a store this April dedicated to sleep-related products. It plans to directly meet patients with sleep disorders visiting the hospital's sleep clinic and recommend customized solutions.
Korea is considered one of the most sleep-deprived countries among the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) nations, sleeping on average only 7 hours and 41 minutes as of 2016, about an hour shorter than the OECD average of 8 hours and 22 minutes.
Lack of sleep has led to an increase in the number of sleep-deprived people seeking medical help. According to the Health Insurance Review & Assessment Service, the number of people who sought professional help for sleep disorders increased 40 percent from 2015, amounting to 637,000 people last year.
“If people try to incorporate sleep-related products, it can help enhance the quality of sleep even during tropical nights,” said Shin Yoon-jeong, the chief buyer in the furniture division of Lotte Department Store.
The Korea Sleep Industry Association projects the local market for sleep-related products will reach more than 3 trillion won ($2.5 billion) this year, a 33 percent increase compared to 2015.
BY MOON HEE-CHUL [firstname.lastname@example.org]
with the Korea JoongAng Daily
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