It’s a soft microfiber doll that makes some pretty interesting noises — and parents on several continents are desperate for it. Why? They want uninterrupted sleep for babies and thus, for them, too.
The Lulla doll is ultra-cuddly, with a simply designed face and a body that emanates both heartbeat and breathing sounds. And if the stories of ecstatic parents are to be believed, babies are dropping into peaceful slumber everywhere.
“I would dress like Dora the Explorer if it would help my baby sleep even an hour longer,” said one tired mom.
The initial release of 5,000 dolls sold out right away, which had desperate, exhausted parents turning to Facebook and participating in a bidding war on eBay — one that pushed the original price of $71 dollars for a Lulla all the way up to $350, according to PopSugar.com.
“Honestly, I would do almost anything to get an extra hour of sleep,” one tired mom of a new baby and a three-year-old from Winchester, Massachusetts, told LifeZette. “I’m crying-jag tired. I would dress like Dora the Explorer and sing ‘I’m the Map’ in front of her bassinet if it would help my baby sleep even an hour longer.”
She is planning on ordering a Lulla doll to try it on her own fussy baby girl.
Eyrún Eggertsdóttir, a mom of two little boys from Iceland, created the Lulla doll after realizing her own babies slept better with physical bonding and closeness to her. “The Lulla doll makes it possible for babies to experience the positive benefits of closeness, even when their parents have to be away for whatever reason,” she explained in the video about the product.
“It makes sense,” one dad from Boston said. “They say puppies sleep better with a clock in their bed that replicates their mother’s heartbeat — why not babies, too? They lived with that comforting rhythmic sound for nine months in utero.”
The Lulla doll’s concept seems to makes scientific sense, too. During pregnancy, fetuses are tuned into their mothers’ physiological cues. Fetal heart and respiratory rates speed up when mom is active — and they slow down when she is sleeping, according to Parentingscience.com.
But after birth, this intimate hormonal connection is broken, and newborns must rely on their own internal clocks. But they haven’t yet developed their own circadian rhythms of melatonin production, so this is a challenge — and where Lulla comes in.
The doll has been said to work like a charm. But it sounds more than a little like Darth Vader, according to Good Housekeeping.
The doll has been said to work like a charm — but it sounds like Darth Vader.
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“I actually found the sound quite terrifying, like something out of ‘The Exorcist,'” one mom told Australia’s news.com.au. “It’s quite loud and I can hear it from outside the bedroom, but it works.” She even ordered two more when her child responded to it.
The team that got behind the doll during its development researched mother-child attachment, according to Good Housekeeping.com. They also tested the Lulla doll in NICU units in the Iceland National Hospital, with the help of some premature and newborn babies.
Lulla is made from soft cotton and hypoallergenic, ultra-fine microfiber, according to The Daily Telegraph. If parents rub the doll against their skin, it will absorb their scent, which, the Telegraph reported, has been proven to help a child feel safe and secure.
“See? Like puppies,” the Boston dad said, laughing, when he heard the scent-selling part of the Lulla doll. “All tiny creatures basically want their mothers.”