In Conversation With: Hullygood
Made for the fighters, the survivors, the winners: Sandra Donskyte, the warrior behind Hullygood, says the pillow is for those who take life seriously.
“It started when I had cancer when I was 25 years old. I ended up on an operation table, and it didn’t go well because the cancer wasn’t treated. So when I woke up from the coma, it became a crucial turn in my life, and being so young, it really changed my mind set,” Sandra tells me, recounting the arduous 10-year journey she’s had.
Refusing medication, and opting not to see doctors any further, Sandra took things into her own hands to see “what I could do by myself, for myself, to keep myself healthy and alive.”
Thus started the development of the Hullygood buckwheat hull pillow, a medium through which Sandra could ensure good sleep and proper rest to put her on the path to better health. Admitting that she was “bedridden for a while” and prone to sweating on her old pillows, Sandra says the Hullygood pillow was the ultimate solution to resolving all her sleeping discomforts, due to its hypoallergenic, antibacterial and antimicrobial qualities.
A traditional practice that hails from her Lithuanian heritage, sleeping on a pillow filled with buckwheat hulls was an idea Sandra got from her mother who was struggling to sleep when she was going through menopause. Suffering from hot flushes and body pain, Sandra saw that a buckwheat hull pillow offered her mother much comfort, especially in providing an incredible breathable and moisture-wicking alternative to a traditional feather or synthetic cushion.
It is for this reason that she believes that it is perfect for city-workers, who spend long hours in cramped offices and suffer from back pain as a result of poor posture. “People like that the grains smell so natural and relaxing, and the fact that it sustains their necks as they sleep,” noting that the pillows adapt to each individual’s unique head/shoulder shape to gently align the neck during sleep.
The pillow is armed with a mouldable and ergonomic design, meaning that no matter which position you prefer to sleep in, be it on your side, front, or back, the grains will move freely to suit and support your shape. This helps improve spinal posture, and is also especially perfect for snorers and those with sleep apnoea, as the pillow’s flexible design means that symptoms of these sleep issues are reduced as a result of the neck support.
Testimonials have also shown that the pillows have helped those who suffer from constant headaches and migraines, due to the soft and flexible nature of the grains inside. “The fluid shape really helps and massages the nerves in the neck to alleviate tensions and pains. It’s like magic for the nerves!” exclaims Sandra, who is pleasantly surprised by this great side-effect of using hulls in a pillow.
Not only is the Hullygood pillow body-friendly, but it’s also environmentally-friendly. “The use of buckwheat hulls in pillows goes back almost six centuries. It’s plant-based, so naturally there’s a lot of goodness in them,” explains Sandra, telling me that she sources her hulls from reliable and fully-certified organic farmers in Poland after having done plenty of research. “We wanted to make sure that there were absolutely no chemicals involved in the farming of the grains, to make them as pure and healthy as possible.”
It doesn’t stop there. Emphasising that breathability and moisture-control were the two key benefits of the hulls, Sandra wanted to extend these qualities to the case as well, leading her on the journey to find the perfect exterior material as well. “Cotton wasn’t suitable because it traps dust and so it isn’t antiallergenic. Naturally, we turned to a durable combination of bamboo fibres and linen to create the complementary pillowcase.”
The result is a fine, luxurious pillow that does wonders for the body and sleep-quality, whilst also being a friend to the earth. Everything from the boxes it comes in, to the ink that is used, to the zippers on the pillows, to the small cards and papers inside, is produced sustainably. “Absolutely everything is bio-degradable, and we’re clear in that we don’t want to leave a bad impact on the environment,” Sandra states with pride.
The Hullygood pillow goes the extra mile to provide sleeping comfort and environmental goodness, but this doesn’t mean that our slumber ought to be considered a luxury commodity. “Sleeping is just as important as eating or exercising, and we need to prioritise it in our health regimens just as much as the next thing. With Hullygood, we’re merely providing people with the best platform they want and need for an ideal night’s sleep,” insists Sandra.
“Yoga, nature, sleep, health and fitness – they are all my survival guide, particularly during those ten difficult years I had. But that only inspired me to continue being active, and do everything I could to take care of myself. I created the Hullygood pillow, and subconsciously, I think that’s where my journey of good sleep began.”
View the Hullygood pillow on the myza website here