Review: Human Charger

Review Human Charger

An iPod-sized device that claims to alleviate symptoms of jet lag sounds insane – and I’ll admit, I was definitely skeptical when I first heard about the Human Charger. But I agreed to try it on my recent trip to Japan from New York. Two weeks later, I’m officially a convert. What can I say? The Human Charger works!

The Human Charger basically looks like an old iPod, if your iPod earphones emitted light instead of music. This is better than just going out in sunlight (a common jet lag remedy) because it emits light straight into the part of your brain that’s sensitive to light via the ear canal. And exposing your brain to light can help shift your circadian rhythms, which fall out of sync when you travel across time zones and can lead to jet lag.

You can figure out when to use the Human Charger on your own, but I just used the handy free app. All you have to do is enter your flight info manually or via TripIt, and the app will notify you each time you should put the headphones in your ears. Just press the button and wait for 12 minutes until the Charger notifies you it’s done.

It seems simple but crazy, right? But I figured – what do I have to lose?

I go to Japan a lot because I have family there, and I tend to adjust to Japan time pretty easily from New York. I have way more trouble when I come back – so for comparison, I had my sister try it with me during our trip. She does not adjust well to different time zones.

The Human Charger doesn’t get rid of jet lag – but it definitely alleviates it. Both my sister and I were able to sleep and awake at regular times for our week in Tokyo, although there was one night when I slept for only 4 hours and couldn’t return to sleep. But even on that day, I was able to stay awake until nearly 10PM.

During my trip to Japan, I was also working – so there were days I had to stay up until 2 or 3AM, or took a short nap and woke up at 1AM to edit an article. Normally, this pattern would have totally screwed up my schedule. But not with Human Charger.

Even my mom remarked how much more alert and happier both my sister and I seemed compared to our other trips to Tokyo.

Still, my trip to Tokyo also involved walking outside a lot, which is the recommended cure for jet lag. So I figured the true test would be when I returned to New York. After all, I would be sitting inside, working at my computer all day.

I was exhausted by the time I returned to my New York apartment, especially because I had stayed up during my flight to complete the Human Charger cycles. (It’s fine if you miss one, and I missed some while in Japan, but I wanted to be thorough). After passing out around 11PM that night, I woke up around 9AM and headed to bed at 11PM.

Of course, the Human Charger isn’t perfect. The app notifications are hard to hear, as is the beep when the charger ends. The light in your ears is quite obvious in dark environments, which is great as a conversation piece but frustrating if you’re trying to be discreet. Also, I had to use it about 5 – 6 times a day every 2 hours. Depending on why you’re traveling, this could be complicated to use.

The Human Charger is also $300. So it might be worth the investment if you’re a business traveler who crosses time zones a lot. But if you only travel a couple of times a year, do you really need the Human Charger? I guess it depends on how well you deal with jet lag.

But ultimately, the Human Charger did exactly what it said it would: it alleviates my jet lag symptoms. So if it sounds like something you want, get it. As crazy as it sounds, it works.

Interested in the Human Charger? Check out it out here!

Written by Sasha Graffagna

 

An iPod-sized device that claims to alleviate symptoms of jet lag sounds insane – and I’ll admit, I was definitely skeptical when I first heard about the Human Charger. But I agreed to try it on my recent trip to Japan from New York. Two weeks later, I’m officially a convert. What can I say? The Human Charger works!

The Human Charger basically looks like an old iPod, if your iPod earphones emitted light instead of music. This is better than just going out in sunlight (a common jet lag remedy) because it emits light straight into the part of your brain that’s sensitive to light via the ear canal. And exposing your brain to light can help shift your circadian rhythms, which fall out of sync when you travel across time zones and can lead to jet lag.

You can figure out when to use the Human Charger on your own, but I just used the handy free app. All you have to do is enter your flight info manually or via TripIt, and the app will notify you each time you should put the headphones in your ears. Just press the button and wait for 12 minutes until the Charger notifies you it’s done.

It seems simple but crazy, right? But I figured – what do I have to lose?

I go to Japan a lot because I have family there, and I tend to adjust to Japan time pretty easily from New York. I have way more trouble when I come back – so for comparison, I had my sister try it with me during our trip. She does not adjust well to different time zones.

The Human Charger doesn’t get rid of jet lag – but it definitely alleviates it. Both my sister and I were able to sleep and awake at regular times for our week in Tokyo, although there was one night when I slept for only 4 hours and couldn’t return to sleep. But even on that day, I was able to stay awake until nearly 10PM.

During my trip to Japan, I was also working – so there were days I had to stay up until 2 or 3AM, or took a short nap and woke up at 1AM to edit an article. Normally, this pattern would have totally screwed up my schedule. But not with Human Charger.

Even my mom remarked how much more alert and happier both my sister and I seemed compared to our other trips to Tokyo.

Still, my trip to Tokyo also involved walking outside a lot, which is the recommended cure for jet lag. So I figured the true test would be when I returned to New York. After all, I would be sitting inside, working at my computer all day.

I was exhausted by the time I returned to my New York apartment, especially because I had stayed up during my flight to complete the Human Charger cycles. (It’s fine if you miss one, and I missed some while in Japan, but I wanted to be thorough). After passing out around 11PM that night, I woke up around 9AM and headed to bed at 11PM.

Of course, the Human Charger isn’t perfect. The app notifications are hard to hear, as is the beep when the charger ends. The light in your ears is quite obvious in dark environments, which is great as a conversation piece but frustrating if you’re trying to be discreet. Also, I had to use it about 5 – 6 times a day every 2 hours. Depending on why you’re traveling, this could be complicated to use.

The Human Charger is also $300. So it might be worth the investment if you’re a business traveler who crosses time zones a lot. But if you only travel a couple of times a year, do you really need the Human Charger? I guess it depends on how well you deal with jet lag.

But ultimately, the Human Charger did exactly what it said it would: it alleviates my jet lag symptoms. So if it sounds like something you want, get it. As crazy as it sounds, it works.

Interested in the Human Charger? Check out it out here!

Written by Sasha Graffagna

 

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