Frequent travelers must learn to sleep wherever, and whenever, they can. Compound that urgency with constant international travel (with its constant jet lag), and you have a recipe for red and puffy eyes. My international travel takes me around the globe several times per month as a travel writer reaching about 450,000 miles flown in a calendar year.
This means there are lots of long flights spanning many time zones and plenty of morning meetings, past-midnight takeoffs, and more than my fair share of meals eaten at odd times of day or night. I wish there were more times to shower or nap after long flights, but that is not always the case. This means that a sound rest on a plane is sometimes one of the most important things I must focus on when criss-crossing time zones.
There is no way around being constantly tired, but there are some remedies that can make the experience slightly more bearable. It begins with a good flight routine (lots of water, ear buds that connect to a white noise app on my phone for actual noise cancellation that costs almost nothing, and an excellent pair of eye shades). I normally use the ones that airlines provide because I have so many and can cycle through them easily by replacing them each week. The Ettitude Organic Bamboo Five More Minutes fabric eye mask, however, is one of those that you want to keep. It is soft, machine washable, and lightweight making it the perfect companion for travelers that only go with carry-on bags. I stuff this eye mask in my pocket at the beginning of the flight and pull it out right before naptime.
Even with good eye creams and face moisturizers, plenty of deep REM sleep is important to keep wrinkles at bay and maintain a better complexion. The eye mask is also important to me because I get warm on planes and keep the air on full blast toward my face. The mask prevents my skin around my eyes from getting too dry and puffy.
What sets this mask apart from the cheaper ones that come in airline amenity kits are that this is made from organic bamboo lyocell fabric, which is exceptionally soft. As I mentioned, I find airplanes to be very stuffy and warm (especially foreign carriers that either have no air vents for passengers to control or keep the temperature much higher than domestic airlines). Cheap eye masks can make you sweaty and uncomfortable, which is why I really liked the soft, lightweight material of this eye mask.
The airline-provided eye masks are cheap, but can get dirty easily, especially if you sweat wearing them. This mask is antimicrobial and hypoallergenic, which are two major plusses, and even if the plane is really warm, the silky fabric texture is more breathable than other masks. In fact, Ettitude says that it is temperature regulating, and I must say that I did not find the need to fold the mask in half over my eyes (like I do with others) to allow for more air flow across my face to stay cool.
This sustainable fabric is made from renewable plant material (organic bamboo pulp), which is both vegan and eco-friendly. Even its manufacturing process manages to effectively recycle and reuse water. I was very pleased with the way this mask felt on my face, and also the way it was easy to fold and squish into my pants or briefcase’s pocket when traveling.
The Ettitude Five More Minites Fabric Eye Mask retails for $10.50 on the Ettitude website. I really liked that there was big benefit in such a small price point, which is the hallmark of a great product.