The Science of Scent and Sleep: Introducing Sleepy’s Scented Pillow Insert

By: SleepScore Labs  |  Oktober 24th, 2023

In the quest for a good night’s sleep, many have turned to various solutions, but what if another option for a restful night’s sleep was right under your nose? Enter Sleepy’s Scented Pillow Insert, a scientifically crafted and recently validated insert placed between your pillow and pillowcase while you prepare to go to bed that harnesses the power of scent to improve sleep. In this article, we’ll delve into the science behind scent and sleep and introduce you to the brand-new Sleepy’s Scented Pillow Insert. 

What is Sleepy’s Scented Pillow Insert? 

 Sleepy’s Scented Pillow Insert is not just another pillowcase accessory. It’s a potential game-changer in the world of sleep improvement technology. These sheets, made primarily from repurposed cotton and other plant-based fibers like Lyocell, are infused with a unique Scent Technology known as METASLEEP™. This technology releases a fragrance that lasts up to one week, creating a comforting atmosphere that promotes better sleep. 

The fragrance itself is a masterful blend crafted with expert perfumers & sleep scientists. It captures the essence of sweet, restful jasmine, calming lavender, and comforting cedarwood. The result? A modern soft linen freshness that envelops you, setting the stage for a night of relaxation and rest. 

The METASLEEP™ Scent Technology & Validation Study: 

METASLEEP™ isn’t just a fancy name. It’s a scientifically validated technology that has been shown to promote better sleep. But don’t just take our word for it. 

A validation study by SleepScore Labs analyzed nearly 600 nights of sleep across 21 healthy research participants. Participants using Sleepy’s Scented Pillow Inserts woke up less often and spent less time awake during the night, as measured by SleepScore Max. In fact, participants spent about 7% less time awake after initially falling asleep, adding up to 90 fewer minutes of time spent awake at night per month. Participants in the study also experienced a nearly 10% reduction in the number of awakenings during the night 

Beyond these objective sleep results, participants also reported significant improvements in perceived sleep quality, frequency of sleep satisfaction, and feelings of being refreshed and well-rested in the morning. And the best part? All these improvements were achieved without resorting to invasive or pharmacological interventions, which can often be uncomfortable, expensive, or come with potential side effects. 

And if you’re sleep nerds like us, here’s some more raw data to dig your teeth (and nose) into: 

Nightly questionnaire results showed that when using Sleepy’s Scented Pillow Inserts, compared to baseline, participants… 

  • Felt sleepier at bedtime (8% increase). 

Daily questionnaire results showed that when using Sleepy’s Scented Pillow Inserts, compared to baseline, participants… 

  • Felt more refreshed in the morning (14% increase).

Questionnaires administered before and after the intervention showed that when using Sleepy’s Scented Pillow Inserts, compared to baseline, participants… 

  • Felt satisfied with their sleep more days per week (38% increase), translating to feeling satisfied with their sleep 8 more days per month. 
  • Felt they had better sleep quality (23% increase). 
  • Felt more well-rested in the morning (20% increase). 

The Science Behind Scents and Sleep 

The idea of using scent to improve sleep isn’t new. In fact, introducing scents during and before sleep has gained traction as a sleep improvement option. While many external sensory stimuli (e.g., sound, light) are processed when we sleep and may typically wake people and lead to sleep disruption, this is not the case with scents. Scents do not lead to behavioral or physiological arousal and can even promote sleep. As a result, several studies have explored the relationship between scents and sleep – and while much of the research on the mechanisms that intertwine sleep and scent are in their infancy, there are generally 3 relatively well-established ways in which scents can improve sleep: 

  1. Scents May Increase Deep Sleep: A study by Perl et al. in 2016 found that certain odors introduced during sleep can enhance deep restorative sleep. In particular, the study found that olfactory stimulation during sleep induces slow-wave oscillations in the brain. This shifting to more low frequencies often imply transitioning to stages of sleep. Importantly, the researchers also found that the effectiveness of the odor to increase slow-wave activity in the brain was dependent on its duration. As the authors state, “The longer an odorant was presented, the longer the increase in [slow wave activity] lasted.” This highlights the importance of longer-lasting scents, such as those provided by Sleepy’s Scented Pillow Insert (every Scented Pillow Insert is meant to last up to one week!). 
  1. Olfactory and Sleep Brain Interactions: Research by Ackerley et al. in 2019 highlighted that olfactory-relevant areas in the brain can influence areas responsible for sleep-wake functioning. This suggests that the olfactory system might directly interact with sleep controls in the brain. Another publication by Gaeta & Wilson in 2022 further supported this, suggesting that odor can modulate arousal and respiration, indirectly affecting sleep. 
  1. Relaxing Pre-Sleep Routines: A study by Wickwire et al. in 2009 emphasized the importance of consistent (and relaxing) pre-sleep routines in their small pilot study. From a more behavioral perspective, anecdotally, scents may improve sleep as part of a consistent relaxing/wind-down pre-sleep. For example, some studies show a shift from a more sympathetic (“fight or flight”) to a parasympathetic tone  (“rest and digest”) due to pleasant scents – reducing arousal, and even improving mood and cognition (Weber & Heuberger, 2008; Woo et al., 20023) 


Sleep is a vital component of our overall health and well-being. With the introduction of products like Sleepy’s Scented Pillow Insert, we’re discovering innovative ways to enhance our sleep experience. This product, backed by scientific research and validation, taps into the intricate connection between scent and sleep. By utilizing METASLEEP™ Scent Technology, Sleepy’s Scented Pillow Insert offers a non-invasive, natural approach to enhancing sleep quality. The blend of jasmine, lavender, and cedarwood not only provides a serene atmosphere but also may promote a less interrupted night of sleep. The impressive results from SleepScore Labs further underscore its efficacy, showing notable improvements in both objective and subjective sleep measures. As the world continues to explore the intricate relationship between our senses and sleep, Sleepy’s Scented Pillow Insert stands as a testament to the power of scent in paving the way for better nights and brighter mornings. So, the next time you’re searching for a solution to your sleep woes, consider giving Sleepy’s Scented Pillow Insert a try. Your sleep may thank you! 

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