Over the last few years the idea of weighted blanket use as a form of therapy has become increasingly popular with the general consumer. Backed by scientific studies, this unique design and construction claims to help with everything from sleep improvement to reduction of anxiety and stress in both adults and children alike. Even autism and ADHD behavior reduction has been linked with weighted blanket use.
One popular company addressing the growing rise of weighted blanket popularity is Gravity. The Sleep Judge Team has had the opportunity to personally review their basic Gravity Blanket design to provide and unbiased opinion of both workmanship and comfort claims. The details below highlight both features of the blanket, as well as our own experience sleeping with it over a period of a few weeks.
Gravity Company Overview
Gravity began as a Kickstarter campaign in 2018 to introduce their first Gravity Blanket design for self-care purposes. This fundraising was wildly successful and they now regularly manufacturer variances of their original Gravity Blanket, as well as weighted sleep masks, colorful duvet cover options, and even apps and courses that address healing both mind and body.
Gravity considers themselves a health technology company to help improve the physical and mental well-being of their consumers. Designed to address sleep problems associated with stress and anxiety, they consistently use research and scientific studies in their approach to sleep comfort. Quality workmanship and material choices are part of the overall experience of their product use as well.
Breakdown of the Gravity Blanket
The Gravity Blanket is designed to provide approximately 10% of your body weight as a weighted, comforting option for therapeutic purposes. Sized for one person use, it uses glass micro beads to provide the heft sewn into a baffle boxed cotton casing for even weight distribution. Each blanket comes with a soft, microfiber duvet cover for added protection and comfort.
The blanket arrived in a plain cardboard box with basic information designating the contents. It was fairly unobtrusive overall and well taped to support the weight of the product within. Upon opening the blanket was well folded and fit snugly in a durable, zippered plastic carrying case which fit perfectly in the box itself to avoid any shifting, folding, or bunching up during transport.
I appreciated how well the blanket was labeled for size, and the information provided in the case was helpful as an introduction to the product. One of the first things I noticed was how heavy the blanket was overall within the case. It lifted free from the box easily with the handles provided on the case, but I was surprised at the heft. To me this donated a quality, well thought out item to allow the consumer to have easy access to what might otherwise be a bulky item to unpack.
Features and Benefits
The claims a company makes about their products are designed to garner attention and help sell their items. But it is always good practice for a buyer to delve deeper into the details of the features and benefits a product is said to have. Below we’ve provided an overview of the blanket, the claims and research that has gone into its overall design, as well as our own personal opinions based on our own use of the blanket.
The Scientific Claims of the Weighted Blanket
It’s important to address the reasons why the Gravity Blanket was made in the first place. A lack of proper sleep has many negative consequences. Not only does it affect the physical performance of the person in question, but it slows cognitive function and hinders brain tissue development. This in turn affects mental wellbeing, and can lead to anxiety and depression. Overtime, consistently poor sleep begins to breakdown both mental and physical health.
The study of Deep Pressure Stimulation surrounds the theory that gentle weight through squeezing, hugging, and holding can help relax the central nervous system. This approach has found to be favorable in treating insomnia, allow for a relaxation stimulation in mental patients, and have an overall calming effect in those it is used upon.
A weighted blanket uses the science behind this pressure to help apply a weight forming experience to stimulate a calming of the central nervous system. According to Gravity, over 55% of consumers have noted that they have had a reduction in stress, over 70% noted it has improved their quality of sleep, and over 85% would recommend it to others. Although this technique may not always be a solution for everyone who buys it, it is still a quality choice for overall use.
Sizes and Weights
As mentioned, the blanket is designed for a single sleeper use and measures approximately 48 x 72 inches. Compared to a queen size bed it easily spans the length, but not the width. It comfortable covers a twin sized bed however.
The size differences of blanket options are based on weight, rather than the perimeter of the blanket itself. The company has found that you want to use approximately 7%-12% of your overall body weight for optimal pressure stimulation. Because of this, it is offered in 15lb, 20lb, and 25lb weights. For a quick reference, consider this guide:
|Body Weight||Blanket Weight|
|100 +||15 lbs|
|180 +||20 lbs|
|230 +||25 lbs|
I used a 15 lb blanket and found it initially to be a little heavy, although I quickly adapted to it. It was not too heavy to turn over under, but I did find it placed more weight along my ankles and feet than what was always comfortable due to how it weight my ankle joints down. Because of this I laid it over a sheet and tried to keep my ankle joints free from the blanket weight whenever I noticed this pressure. Once asleep I never noticed this nor did I ever wake up stiff or uncomfortable because of this.
Other Blanket Options
With a wide variety of choices available to influence a more restful sleep, Gravity products provide the option to customize your overall sleep experience.
- Duvet cover material choices allow you to pick from the original soft, micro-plush cover for a stylish, winter warmth; or a cooling, moisture-wicking tech fabric for warmer weather and hot sleepers. These can also be purchased separately for interchangeability.
- Blankets and duvets are also offered in two sizes to fit your own personal needs. The single sized blanket is perfect for one person to experience the therapeutic effects of a weighted blanket. It also is offered in a Queen/King size to accommodate dual sleepers as long as both sleepers require the same weight based on their own body weight.
- Gravity also offers an On The Go style that is both smaller and tops out at 10 pounds to allow you to easily take it with you wherever you may travel. It comes with a premium carrying case to make portability a cinch, and also has a specially designed cover suitable for all climates and easy to wipe down and clean.
- The Gravity and Calm App collaboration allows you to take full advantage of a specially branded blanket and App deal to provide you the therapeutic benefits of both weighted blankets and the acclaimed sleep, meditation, and relaxation App. This package includes a single sized blanket in a blue plush cover and a 1 year subscription to Calm.
- The premium queen sized shredded memory foam pillow is one of the company’s latest introductions and boasts a cooling bamboo cover and fully customizable feel. The patented scent diffusing system releases soothing lavender through the night and comes with cartridges to refill your system as needed.
Sleep masks also take your sleep comfort to a whole new level by providing gentle pressure to your orbital area wrapped in a comforting micro-plush and imitation cashmere cover. Choose between a traditional sleep mask or a Thermo-Comfort that includes a heating/cooling gel pack.
Glass Bead Weighted Fill
Although the company originally used a plastic poly-pellet as their source of weight, they have been transitioning to the use of fine grade glass beads. I’ll admit, I had no idea what this meant, and the company website and related selling platforms didn’t provide me any insight to this material.
Therefor I took it upon myself to research what, exactly, glass beads used in this manner are. In short, glass beads are small (usually between 0.75-1.00mm diameter) and sand like. They provide a heavy, fluid feel to settle around the curves and folds of your body for excellent weight distribution. Smaller than most poly-pellets, the blanket is able to be less lofty and bulky overall.
These beads are ingrained with a soft polyester fiber as well to help with distribution and comfort. This small percentage of fiber fill also allows for better airflow through the blanket to keep it from retaining too much body heat. The overall feel is slightly grainy if you rub the material between your fingers, but it is not at all noticeable when used.
Cotton Baffle Construction
The filling resides in a 100% cotton, baffle box sewn case to keep it from shifting and allow for even weight distribution. The cotton provides excellent airflow as well. I found this design to be highly effective and noticed no shifting of the filling at any time and a very even distribution of weight when in use. This is a fairly thin design without any unnecessary thickness due to the use of the glass beads. This keeps it from feeling bulky, or from noticing as the beads shift (as they must due due to gravity). Personally I felt it is a well thought out construction design to be able to apply so much weight to such a small surface area.
Micro-Fiber Duvet Cover
To provide even further comfort and protection to the blanket, it comes in a thick, polyester microfiber duvet cover that is soft to the touch. This is a very luxurious feeling cover with a simple stitched design and I absolutely fell in love with the feel of it. At first I was a little worried it would be a hair magnet and easily attract any stray hairs left by my dog that sleep at the foot of the bed on her own blanket; but I am happy to report after weeks of use it has not attracted pet hair, fuzz, loose threads, or anything else that might be prone to sticking to a material of this kind.
I did have one concern about this cover in reference to long term use. It is still a but cool here in the evenings, but the feel of the cover belays warmth, and as the weather warms I am already anticipating it too be too warm to use regularly.
– Flat, Hidden Zipper
The cover is easily removable via a flat, hidden zipper. And hidden it is! It runs the length of one side and took me a few minutes to even find as it is well sewn into the seam, lays flat, and cannot be felt against the seam itself. This is an excellent design, very durable, and sewn securely into the cover to avoid being stressed due to the weight of the blanket within.
– 8 Duvet Ties
To further secure the blanket to the cover, and to keep it from shifting within, there are 8 button ties: one in each corner and one along the middle of each length. These are easy to access and provide very good security to keep everything in place. To test these out I picked up and shook the blanket, rolled it, and bunched it up- and each time it flattened back out without any indication that it has come loose.
Obviously, the duvet cover is easily removed for machine washing and drying. Simply unzip and untie each secure area and slip off to launder. The blanket itself cannot be placed in the machine. For starters you probably would ruin the washer due to the uneven weight, but you also do not want the glass beads to wear up against the cotton in such a manner.
If washing the blanket is needed, simply do so by hand and in sections and lay flat to dry. You also can dry clean the entire blanket when needed.
The company offers returns and exchanges within 30 days if the product does not meet your expectations, or you feel you need a different weight. The blanket must be returned in like new condition with all the original packaging. You also must request this in writing via email.
The beads used in the blanket could be a choking hazard for young children if access is given through a damaged blanket. Because of this is it not recommended to be used by children younger than 3 years of age.
Despite only being available for approximately a year at the time of this writing, consumers have consistently provided positive feedback pertaining both to quality and comfort of the blanket. Included in this is how supportive of the claims it actually is. Improvement of sleep, less restlessness, and the ability to fall asleep faster are regularly commented upon.
Of course, with such a new product consumer feedback is important to help guide the company to improving upon their original design. One change that was recently made is the switching from poly-beads to glass to allow for less pressure and wear against seams for more durability and even weight distribution. Another addition was the cooling cover as many people have commented on how warm the blanket sleeps at times due to its insulating properties.
Overall it is highly recommended for those suffering from restlessness and an inability to fall asleep easily.
The Gravity Blanket came into my life at a pretty opportune time. A lot of stress and anxiety had been occuring, and the use of a weighted blanket had actually been mentioned to me by those who have taken advantage of them in the past. Despite the claims I was fairly skeptical of its use. Struggling with wakefulness and an interrupted night’s sleep on a regular basis, I was curious to see if it could actually relax me to fall asleep, and help support a more restful night.
– First Night
Initially the weight seemed a bit much overall, and as I mentioned earlier the pressure on my ankles was not comfortable although I easily remedied that situation. I did relax under the weight fairly quickly as I grew used to the feel, and I found it very comforting the first night I used it. I would say that even though I was not struggling to fall asleep too often, since using the blanket I have had no difficulties drifting off at all.
– Nighttime Wakefulness and Anxiety
As for waking in the night with anxiety, I do still wake, but instead of staying awake I find I am able to get back to sleep. This is a huge improvement as I normally would lose hours of sleep struggling to relax again after waking.
– Resting Heart Rate Average
I also wear an exercise tracker that records my heart rate. I am able to see the range it falls in through the night, and on the nights I had been waking with anxiety held a much higher average resting heart rate than more peaceful nights. After using the Gravity Blanket for a week I noticed that my resting rate average had dropped significantly, suggesting to me that the blanket has helped address my nocturnal problems to allow me a more relaxing night.
– Heat Retention
If there is any drawback to this blanket, it is concerning heat retention. I do not sleep warm by any means and am regularly tucked up under blankets. However, I can definitely tell a difference in how well this blanket holds body heat. Although I am not waking hot or in a sweat, I have been woken due to a rise in body temperature that has prompted me to sleep in thinner pajamas. I am unsure how well this will translate as we move into warmer months. The Gravity Blanket website also features a cooling version of the blanket which is well worth considering if you live in a warmer climate.
Overall Rating: 4.6/5.0
The attention to detail and effort that has gone into the creation and design of the Gravity Blanket is well worth noting. In my opinion this is a quality item and for such a young company definitely has carved out a niche in the market that I expect will continue to see growth. Its claims seem to be well founded, and if my experience is similar to other customers, then those taking advantage of the science behind deep pressure stimulation are getting a better night’s sleep.
I think it is important to mention that this isn’t some magic solution to all your stress and anxiety, but it seems to definitely help ease the worst of what you may be experiencing. Also, when you get a more restful sleep you are also able to better deal with your discomforts both mentally and physically.
The biggest drawback of the blanket is the heat retention. They have been addressing this with their new cooling duvet cover which highlights the company’s awareness of the issue due to consumer feedback.
Whether you have had prior knowledge of weighted blanket use or this has all been new to you, The Gravity Blanket is most definitely worth a consideration. The use of glass beads over poly-beads, and the dual duvet and duvet cover design makes it friendly for even weight distribution and provides excellent overall comfort.