Eight Sleep Pod 2 Cover Review: Not From An Influencer

eight sleep cover review

Most of the Eight Sleep reviewers were provided a free Eight Sleep in exchange for their review. There’s nothing wrong with promoted content (as long as it’s disclosed), but I wanted to create a real review, so I bought the cover for close to $2,000.

While a bit skeptical before buying, I’ve owned my Eight Sleep Pod Pro Cover for more than six months, and love it.

At this point, I get annoyed when I’m away from my Eight Sleep and have to sleep on a surface that’s not automatically cooled.

But due to the Eight Sleep’s price tag, it’s not for everyone.

In this post, I’ll go over how the cover and the app work, then I’ll give you five reasons why you should buy an Eight Sleep, and a few reasons why it might not be for you.

Getting Started

If you get the Eight Sleep mattress, it’ll come in three separately shipped boxes. One box will have the foam mattress, one will have the Active Grid with the encasement cover, and the final box has the hub.

You can buy just the Pod Pro Cover and Hub, without the mattress if you want to use your own mattress. Either way, you’ll get an identical experience. The decision to buy Eight Sleep’s mattress or use your own comes down to how old and how much you like your current mattress.

I didn’t know what to expect from the comfort of Eight Sleep’s mattress, so I bought a $500 mattress on Amazon, which I already had experience with and saved a little bit of money instead.

The setup is straightforward and there’s a step-by-step video tutorial, but it took me about an hour before I was able to set up the temperature controls.

You’ll place the encasement on the mattress, like a fitted sheet. Add the straps, then attach the active Grid to the encasement by zipping them together.

Then, you attach the hose that extends from the top of the grid to the hub. The hub is the brains of the whole system and it’s about 12” high. It will most likely need to go on the left or right side of your bed. I bought a bed frame that’s 14” off the floor, specifically because I wanted to put my hub under the bed due to my small bedroom and it worked perfectly.

The last step is to sync the hub to your phone and fill up the reservoir with water and hydrogen peroxide and prime the pump, which will cycle the water through the bed for a couple of hours.

Five Reasons to Buy

#1 – Temperature Control

The Pod Pro Cover has a grid of coils that have water pumped through them to heat or cool the surface. It can heat up to 110°F, which is the +10 temperature level in the app. Or it can get as cold as 55°F, which is a -10 temperature level in the app.

During Eight Sleep’s initial questionnaire, it asks you how you typically feel while you’re in bed. Are using a ton of blankets, routinely throwing the covers off, or somewhere in between?

Eight Sleep uses your answers and their data from other users to recommend an ideal bed temperature for each stage of your sleep.

Once your bedtime and wake time are set, the Pod Pro will automatically pre-heat or pre-cool your bed, so that it’s at the perfect temperature when you hop in. Then, it’ll turn off when you wake up.

When you open the app, there’s a temperature dial that can be used for manual control. But once I had my temperature settings optimized, I have never touched the manual control.

The best part about the heating and cooling is that there are two heating and cool zones. One for you and one for your partner. And each side of the bed gets an Eight Sleep account and gets full control of their designated side.

For me? I sleep on the hotter side. After weeks of tweaks, I’ve found that -4 when I get into bed, then -3 when once my body gets into deep sleep, then -2 when I’m in REM sleep is ideal.

But my wife prefers the total opposite. She’s a cold sleeper and likes her side to be hot enough to fry an egg on.

There’s nothing more satisfying than coming into a nice cool bed. My testing has been during the cold winter, but once the summer and humidity hit, having the sheets not stick to my skin should be a game-changer.

I didn’t notice how much I loved my Eight Sleep until I went on a week-long vacation and slept without it. I felt hot and couldn’t get comfortable for my entire trip.

#2 – Improved Sleep Quality

The Eight Sleep helps you become a more efficient sleeper, by getting you to fall asleep faster and by trading some light sleep for deep sleep. The goal is to get as much deep and REM sleep as possible during your time asleep. Ideally, with the Eight Sleep, you should feel more recovered with no change in the amount of time you spent in bed.

Eight Sleep has a bunch of data that show improvements in user’s deep sleep and getting to sleep faster. But I wouldn’t lean too heavily on Eight Sleep’s studies because they’re trying to sell you something. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any third-party studies. 

Instead, I tested for myself using my Oura Ring. Thirty days without my Eight Sleep enabled and thirty days with the Eight Sleep on. I rotated on and off every week for eight weeks.

Keep in mind, Oura Ring’s data isn’t nearly as accurate as a professional sleep study, and my experiment was unscientific, but I did my best to keep all the major variables, like caffeine, alcohol, and diet consistent during my testing.

According to my Oura Ring, about 28.28% of my sleep was deep sleep with the Eight Sleep enabled. With the Eight Sleep disabled, 25.37% of my sleep was deep sleep. That’s an 11% difference in deep sleep, which worked out to be an extra 14 minutes or so of deep sleep per night.

Interestingly, my REM sleep decreased by about 5% with the Eight Sleep turned on.

Overall, my testing showed that my light sleep decreased by a small, yet noticeable margin, which is a win. But forget the data. Here’s all you need to know: I originally planned to do two months of testing without the Eight Sleep and two months with it, but I had to cut the testing down to just one month because I hated sleeping without it turned on.

#3 – Sleep Tracking

Eight Sleep tracks your movements, your heart rate, heart rate variability, reciprocity rate, and your sleep cycles as you sleep. The best part is that you don’t need to wear anything on your wrist or finger and tracking happens automatically each night.

Each morning, you’re provided with a Sleep Fitness Score based on a 100-point scale. This comes from a combination of time slept, wake-up consistency, time to fall asleep, and time to get up.

Eight Sleep’s sleep data isn’t perfect, especially if you roll over to your partner’s side, but I found the data to match my Oura Ring closely as long as I stayed on my side the whole night. You’ll occasionally see a wake up time that got cut a little short, but you can manual edit if that happens.

HRV is one of the most important metrics for tracking how well your body recovered from the previous day and Eight Sleep does a solid job of recording it. Basic sleep trackers like Apple Watch don’t provide this data, and the devices like Oura Ring and Whoop that do, cost more than $300.

I wouldn’t buy the Eight Sleep for sleep tracking alone, but it’s a great sweetener.

#4 – Alarm

Eight Sleep has a feature called GentleRise that vibrates the bed when it’s time to wake up. You can add more heat or coolness during your wake-up time too.

My wife thinks the gentle vibration alarm is one of its best features.

I haven’t used an alarm clock in years. But I appreciate this feature because I often don’t even hear when the vibrations go off on my wife’s side. Compare that to a loud phone alarm that wakes up everyone in the room. The wake up vibrations are great if you and your partner have drastically different wake up times.

#5 – Integrations

You can import your exercise data from Apple Health, Peloton, Fitbit, and others to give Eight Sleep a better idea of your life outside of the bed to make better recommendations and understand your metrics better.

You can also export your sleep data from Eight Sleep app to the Apple Health app. I love having my weight imported from my Eufy Scale, my exercise and heart data from my Apple Watch and now my sleep from Eight Sleep in the same spot.

You can create some interesting automations with your smart devices with IFTTT. For example, you would turn on your smart lights after your Eight Sleep alarm goes off.

Three Reasons Not to Buy

#1 – Expensive

The Eight Sleep Pod Pro Cover costs between $1,500 and $1,900 depending on the size of your bed. Or between $2,700 and $3,400 if you want Eight Sleep’s foam mattress too.

Or you can finance the Pod Cover for an average of $70/month for two years, which helps to lighten the blow.

Eight Sleep has a new 8+ Pro subscription that provides an interesting temperature Autopilot feature that adjusts your bed’s temperature based on your past history, bedroom temperature, and other factors automatically. But at $15/month it feels like a cash grab. I’d skip this subscription, but even if you skip it, Eight Sleep is expensive.

How do I justify Eight Sleep’s price?

I don’t know how to say this without sounding like a full-time mattress salesman, but we spend a minimum of 25% of our lives in bed. Sleep is huge for mental and physical health. I treat devices that improve my health as an investment.

Before my purchase, I wrote that if it could improve my sleep by 10%, I’d consider the purchase a huge win. I didn’t reach my goal via provable data, but I still feel good about the purchase. 

If you have the means, Eight Sleep makes sense if you want to optimize your health. With that being said, I slept without an Eight Sleep for almost 30 years without much issue, aside from a few really hot summer nights. It’s definitely a luxury purpose.

#2 – Comfort

You’ll need to sacrifice a bit of surface comfort.

The Pod Pro Cover has foam around the coils on the grid in an attempt to hide them, but you can still feel the coils and sensors throughout the bed. There’s a strap that attaches the cover to the encasement that runs across my chest too. The strap gets more tense as the person on the other side moves. I got used to the coils and the strap after a few weeks and don’t notice them anymore.

The cover adds a bit of firmness to your bed too. It’s tough to tell if this firmness is due to the Eight Sleep and my mattress not being fully broken in yet or that’s how the bed will remain. I like a mattress on the firmer side, but if you have a squishy and soft bed, the Eight Sleep might make it less than ideal.

Sacrificing a small bit of surface comfort in exchange for a huge difference in temperature level comfort is a win in my book.

Another thing to consider is the temperature zones.

The temperature zones are great. But it creates a boundary line between the two sides of the bed. If you and your partner have vastly different preferences in temperature, you might not like the experience if you accidentally roll over to their side.

Luckily, my wife and I have a king bed, making it easy to stay in our zones. But if you’ve got a full-size mattress or you like to sleep close to your partner, it’ll likely become an issue if you have different temperature preferences.

#3 – Longevity

After a few months of use, my Eight Sleep started to get a bit noisy where the hose connects to the cover. I was worried, but I “primed the pump” in the app to circulate the water, which removed the air bubbles causing the noise after a couple of hours.

Overall, I haven’t had any issues with my bed, but let’s consider the crazy amount of tech involved with Eight Sleep between the hub, the coils, and all the sensors. If any of the components malfunction, it’ll deter your experience.

Eight Sleep comes with a two-year limited warranty, but will the tech last past two years?

And if my bed has issues after two years, how much will it cost to get fixed? Will Eight Sleep even be around after two years? They seem like a good company, but it’s just a young startup.

This is all speculative. There aren’t definitive answers to these questions, but it’s worth considering when dropping thousands. If I can get five years out of my Eight Sleep, I’ll be more than satisfied.

Who is this for?

To go along with the lack of real reviews, Eight Sleep’s marketing was another red flag that made me hesitate before buying. I was spammed with about ten emails and a text message, which was some form of the same “amazing” deal that I’d be stupid to miss out on. Premium brands don’t typically need to sell THIS hard.

But despite Eight Sleep’s poor marketing judgment, it’s an amazing product.

You should buy the Eight Sleep Pod Pro if you’re often uncomfortable during the night. The Eight Sleep is ideal for those who live in a hot climate or in a room where AC isn’t a possibility. Ideally, help you to decrease your light sleep and improve your recovery in the morning. The sleep tracking and vibration alarm are awesome additions too.

I could only prove a small yet noticeable difference in my sleep quality with data. But most importantly, I hated sleeping without it.

It’s expensive and there are a few downsides to its surface comfort, but it seems worth the risk if you have the funds and want to try to improve your sleep.

If you use my link, you can save $200 of your purchase. Keep in mind that I’ll earn a commission if you go on to buy an Eight Sleep. There’s nothing special with this discount either. It can be found pretty much anywhere on the internet. I won’t be offended if you don’t use it, but I appreciate it if you do.

25 thoughts on “Eight Sleep Pod 2 Cover Review: Not From An Influencer”

    1. Nothing new to report! One thing that I’ve noticed now that it’s hot outside: I don’t need to keep the AC down nearly as low because the bed’s providing a ton of coolness. Maybe I’ll save a little electricity.

      1. Hi Cam,
        Reading your review, it sounds like one of (many) drivers would be rooms with AC – but it seems like you have both?

        If you can already automatic your room temp, beyond some electricity savings and some benefits to temps beneath the sheets – is the Eight Sleep still worthwhile?

        Apologies, somewhat a silly question as you’ve justified why it’s a good purchase for you – I’m just struggling to grapple with the tangible benefit given we have a “smart” AC. However, I guess I’ll only know by trying and using the free trial.

        1. It sounds like you’re trying to convince yourself that you need this, but maybe you don’t. I’m not suggesting everyone needs an Eight Sleep. If you’re sleeping comfortably every night and never hot or cold, there’s probably not much of a need.

          In my case, during the summer the temp in the bedroom is around 72 degrees, which is a fine temp, but I still get hot. Sure, we could make the room cooler, but then my wife is too cold. The Eight Sleep is so good at regulating temperature that we turned off our AC way earlier in the season than normal. This is good for few reasons: AC’s are loud, can sometimes make the air too dry, and use a lot of electricity.

          Perhaps the biggest reason to get an Eight Sleep is when you have two people who disagree most on the temperature of the room.

  1. Did you get the Pod 2 or Pod 3? Whats the difference and is the pod 3 worth the price increase. Not even looking at the Pod 3 with Perfect fit, just too much for an unknown.

    1. I have the Pod 2. The Pod 3 came out last week and I ordered it to try it out, but it hasn’t arrived yet.
      I honestly don’t know what I’d do in your situation, but I’d probably lean towards spending the extra $300 for the new one.

  2. Great honest review, thank you! I just got the Pod 2 Pro this week. At first I set it quite cold so I didn’t have the best night’s sleep. It actually felt like I was sleeping on a wet surface. Then I read it’s best to use the relative settings and to start with -1 for the first week so now it feels more comfortable.

    The Pod 3 was released 2 days after I ordered. They said I can try this for 30 days and return it if I decide to go for the pod 3. I have the pod 2 with the perfect fit so it fits really snug on my mattress and honestly I don’t feel any of the coils or the sensors. I also think the data will often be a bit skewed in my case because my dog sleeps on top of the bed, so his pressure might affect things.

    So firstly I don’t need the supposed extra comfort from the pod 3 as the 2 is comfortable enough. I also don’t need the 5ghz wifi. I got the pod 2 for a special price so the 3 will costs $540 more which is quite substantial. I’m thinking of getting an Oura ring 3 which will give me more daytime data and should be even more accurate for HRV and even temperature, and the Oura data connects to the Eight Sleep too.

    I’m interested in hearing your thoughts on this. Thanks again for the great honest review.

    1. It’s tough to say. I bought the Pod 3 and I’ll be setting it up tonight. I bought it just for this blog because I’m still really happy with my Pod 2. I’ll try to give an update on this post within a week, then write something long form after testing for a few months.

        1. It’s really not a huge difference, but the most noticeable thing is comfort. If the comfort of the Pod 2 was a 6/10, the Pod 3 is like 8/10.

  3. You say you “hated sleeping without it”, but could you give some details as to why? Was it more comfortable, did you feel like you tossed and turned less during the night, did you wake up feeling more rested, etc?

    1. Like I said in the post:
      – I got about 10% more deep sleep per night, which is appreciated.
      – I’m a hot sleeper. I don’t like when sheets stick to me. I just feel generally uncomfortable when I’m too hot. Eight Sleep fixes this.
      – I like the sleep tracking without a wearable being needed.

  4. Last night was night 1 with the Pod 3 cover and I honestly didn’t have great sleep. I’m a side sleeper and my whole upper body, shoulders, neck and even my collarbone felt sore and stiff when I woke up. I’m wondering if the sensors and components stiffened up my mattress enough to cause this? (Although I normally prefer firmer over softer when it comes to mattresses.) I might add we have a 17 year old TempurPedic mattress so that could also be part of the issue as well. Any input?

    1. This review is of the Pod 2, but I’ve owned the Pod 3 for a couple of months now (a new review will go up soon), and actually find it much more comfortable than the Pod 2. I hardly notice any sensors or stiffness anymore.

      But I can’t speak to how you felt. If you think it’s uncomfortable, it’s uncomfortable.

      1. Ok, well I guess it’s a good thing I have the 3 and not the 2! I know it’s ridiculous to make a judgement after just one night’s sleep so I’ll obviously give it more time to decide whether or not to keep it. I kind of wish their return policy was longer than 30 days but not much I can do about that. Thanks for your honest review. Very tough to come by and much appreciated!!

  5. I keep my pod on +2 the entire night. It nicely regulates to that temperature so that I don’t need to adjust the blanket all night to feel warm when I first get in and then make sure I’m not sweating all night. That temperature regulation is the key feature for me.

    The pod cover is stretched tightly across the conventional mattress, making it firmer than just the mattress alone. We have a very soft mattress, which is now just barely soft enough for me. Also keep in mind that the pod cover must be the top layer of your sleep surface (except for a sheet) in order for the the tech to work.

    We added a Border Collie (about 55 lbs) on the bed this year. I hadn’t thought about the effect this might have on the Eight Sleep until reading these comments. I haven’t noticed any difference in operation since getting the dog.

    Our original hub was very noisy and was quickly replaced by Eight Sleep. Our active grid developed a small leak after 22 months of use, and a new warranty replacement is on its way. They wanted reasonable proof of our problems (video and pictures), but not too burdensome. This still seems like the best solution for those who want some temperature control and can afford the price, but hopefully they are improving the durability.

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I’ve been obsessed with gadgets since I was eight years old. I buy each device reviewed with MY money and don’t have insider access. I’m just like you, the everyman.