Props in Yoga – Eye Pillows – How to use them and why

printed eye pillows for yoga

Have you ever spotted that random rectangular bag at the end of your yoga mat in a class and wondered what the hell it’s for? Well, they are eye pillows and those little humble beings are your ticket to the most relaxed savasana of your life.

An eye pillow is essentially one of those bean bags you used to have to throw in PE. A small bag filled with seeds of some sort to add some weight to your eyes in relaxation. A yoga eye bean bag basically! The Yogipod ones are filled with linseed but they can also be filled with flaxseed or other small seeds. These fillings mean they can mould to the shape of your face, completely blocking out light anf providing rest.

Eye pillows are sometimes scented with dried lavender in the bag but others are left unscented for us with essential oils as and when you would want to add scent to your practice. Scent can be such a strong personal choice and a really useful part of the practice. If you’d like to learn more I really recommend Neals Yard as a resource.

How can you use an eye pillow?

So the obvious way to use an eye pillow is in savasana or relaxation at the end of class. It’s the perfect way to block out any light and the weighting begins to let your body know to relax.

relaxing using an eye pillow over the eyes
photo credit – Sam Lindley for Nitara

There are other uses for eye pillows though too.

  1. Weighting in postures – eye pillows are also gorgeous for adding weight to postures in a more restorative setting. I love placing one onto the lower back in childs pose, it really helps to guide the weight of your bottom back to your heels. It’s also gorgeous to pile a couple onto the soles of the feet when in legs up the wall.
  2. Alleviating pressure – do you suffer a little bit from wrist pain in downward dog or other postures where the wrists are bearing weight? By popping the heel of your hand onto an eye pillows and elevating the wrists the can help to alleviate pressure
  3. Wrist support – I am never very far from an eye pillow and have actually discovered they also make really nice wrist supports for when you’re using your laptop or mouse, fold them and pop them under your wrist and kiss those achy wrists good bye.

My eye pillow recommendations

Yogipod eye pillows are the perfect weight and size for savasana. Left unscented they can be personalised to add any scent to you want .

When adding scent make sure that you are using a natural product, it is safe for you to use and that you are not allergic to it as it is likely to be very close to your skin, eyes and nose. My favourite places for scent are doTERRA, Root and Flower and Neals Yard.

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