Philips Respironics DreamWear Review- Don’t Buy Until You Read This!
If I could use one word to describe how most sleep apnea patients feel about CPAP, I’d pick “frustrated”.
Who can blame us? Sleep is, to many people, one of the best parts of the day. To some, it might even be the best part of being alive.
Life is a bit different for us – we get to go to bed wearing a sort of alien rubber mask that makes blowing sounds, leaks if you move, costs way too much money, and needs to be cleaned every day. Hooray…
However, every once in a blue moon, we find a mask defies some of these stereotypes. Helping us become the change we want to see in the world of sleep apnea.
Discovering the Philips Respironics DreamWear
Having been labeled a mouth sleeper by my doctor, I’ve exclusively been using only full face CPAP masks to treat my sleep apnea. Most CPAP users start out with full face masks as many of them tend to be mouth sleepers because they’ve had sleep apnea for a while now.
Recently, I decided to try out my very first nasal CPAP mask- the Philips Respironics DreamWear.
It was mind altering.
Compared to all the other CPAP masks I’ve used, the lack of a mouth section made the DreamWear a much more comfortable mask.
The design was unique and effective. On the very first night I used this mask, I was able to sleep with it through most of the night and woke up feeling refreshed and energized.
As I kept using the mask every day over the course of about a month now, I got a sense for the kind of mask that the Philips Respironics DreamWear is, along with what where it’s strengths and weaknesses lie.
In this post, I’ll be sharing my Philips Respironics DreamWear review with you guys. My hope is for you to determine, by the end of this review, whether the DreamWear would be a good fit for your needs or not.
Check out my video review of the Philips Respironics DreamWear Nasal Mask below
Sleep Mobility: 98/100
Mask Fit: 98/100
Standard Retail Price: $72.00
Pros & Cons
1. Extremely easy to adjust
2. Easiest initial fit process I’ve ever gone through
3. No face or nose bruising
5. No hosing getting in the way while sleeping
6. Extremely quiet
8. Quickly removable
9. Allows you to sleep in any position
10. Comfortable soft silicone mask cushion
11. Multiple mask cushion sizes included per purchase
12. Easy to clean
13. Conveniently storable for travel
1. Mask strap seems a bit fragile
2. Not good for very high therapy pressures (above 17cmh20)
In terms of comfort, the Philips Respironics DreamWear is unmatched. Compared to all other masks I’ve tried, it’s the first mask I’ve used that almost feels like there’s nothing there.
The mask has a bit of an unconventional design. It features one back strap that keeps the mask fitted to your head, replaceable nose cushions, and a CPAP hosing inlet located at the top of the head. The entire mask, aside from the mask strap, is made from a comfortable and soft silicone tubing material through which air flows through.
As unique as the design may seem, Philips Respironics was on to something when they came up with it. The mask material and hosing location both made the mask feel very comfortable and more natural than other masks I’ve used. Placing the hosing inlet at the top of the head is a huge game changer for most CPAP users because it stops them from having to deal with the obstruction and weight of a hose in front of their face while sleeping.
Additionally, the mask package includes two side tubing sleeves that help the mask feel even softer and more comfortable.
The first time I saw the DreamWear mask design, I wasn’t entirely convinced about the mask being able to deliver therapy air from the mask cushion to the nose without pushing the mask away from the face. Once I used the mask and tested over multiple pressure ranges I realized this was nothing to worry about.
The mask cushion comfortably attaches to your face without feeling sticky. Once I had my mask on, it generally felt like the mask cushion was part of my face. I noticed that this was the case partially because the mask cushion is placed underneath the nose rather than wrapping all over the nose.
I experienced no irritation whatsoever from using the mask cushion. Note that each Philips Respironics DreamWear mask package comes with three different mask cushion sizes (S, M, L). This allows each person to pick a size that fits them best or even to share with a spouse if more than one person in the house uses CPAP.
In addition, you might notice that air flows through the entire mask, which is made of a soft silicone tubing material. If one side of the mask tubing gets pinched, the therapy air will compensate by delivering more air to the other side of the mask, thus allowing you to obtain your necessary air pressure despite minor mask blockages.
Mask Air Leakage
I tested the Respironics DreamWear over a pressure range of 0.5 cmH20 to 20 cmH2O to determine how much mask air leakage was produced.
From my testing and experiences, I found that the mask only leaked in the following two situations:
- If you pushed the side of your face on the pillow and nodded your head up. This effectively separates the mask from your face and causes some leakage. However, most people don’t ever do this while sleeping.
- At pressure ranges above 17 cmH2O, leakage started occurring despite how much I adjusted the mask.
That being said, if you require air pressures above 17 cmH20, the Philips Respironics DreamWear might not work for you.
Note that when leakage occurred it wouldn’t ever spray all over my face as many of my older full face masks often did.
If you’ve followed our CPAP mask reviews for some time, you probably know that one of the most common problems with CPAP masks is facial irritation and nose bruising. Personally, it took me about 4 different full face masks before I finally found one that didn’t leave some kind of mark on my face in the morning.
I haven’t experienced any irritation whatsoever with the DreamWear. In fact, from all the reviews I’ve read online, I have yet to find one where users complain about mask irritation or nose bruising.
In my experience, the mask strap has been able to hold up well despite how tight the mask may be tightened. It does a good job of holding the mask in place but not making it feel like it’s an obstruction to sleep.
The strap can easily be separated from the mask in the case that it needs to be washed. However, I wouldn’t expect you needing to wash it often at all.
My favorite thing about the DreamWear his how easy it is to sleep in any sleep position. The Philips Respironics DreamWear has allowed me to change from sleeping on my side to sleeping on my back throughout the night without affecting my therapy.
Sleeping Position Options
If you are looking for a mask that offers you the ability to sleep in any position you want, the Philips Respironics DreamWear is a great option.
I enjoy sleeping on my side at times as it helps give my lower back some rest. One of the reasons why I decided to try out the DreamWear was due to high sleep mobility reviews. The general consensus in the user population is that it’s worked great as a mask for side sleepers and people that struggle to sleep on their back.
After using the mask for about a month now, I can say these reviews weren’t wrong. With the DreamWear, I’ve been able to sleep on my side comfortably. I’ve also been able to switch sleeping positions easily in the middle of the night without any impact on my therapy.
Mask Tubing Placement
Placing the CPAP tubing on the top of the mask rather than on the front or bottom was a mind-blowing idea.
As goofy as it looks to have an antenna sticking out of your head, you can’t argue with the results: most people prefer the new location because it allows them to rotate their body and move their head without getting caught in the tubing. It also means the weight of the hose is supported by your head now, which ends up feeling like there’s no hose attached to the mask at all.
The mask has a shape that emphasizes minimalism and simplicity over anything else. The only parts that extend from the mask are the soft silicone tubing sections on the side. Because of this, the mask doesn’t get in the way of you moving around while in bed, wearing glasses, eating, drinking, or anything of the sort. It also looks a lot more natural than other CPAP masks.
If your mask doesn’t fit right because it leaks, bruises, feels bulky, or just doesn’t feel right, then it’s not much of a useful mask. Check out the Philips Respironics DreamWear review video above for a closer view of how I adjust my mask.
Initial Mask Fitting
When you first purchase a CPAP mask, some of the initial frustrations have to do with the fact that you need to find a fit that doesn’t allow any air to leak without making the mask feel like it’s too tight.
The DreamWear has been the first mask I’ve ever been able to get the right fit from the first night I used it. I was quite surprised because with my other masks it has generally taken me around a week of trial and error before I find a fit that gets it just right.
I believe the mask is designed to make finding the right fit for each person easy. The single mask strap and the mask cushion material both help in simplifying the fitting process. Additionally, the Respironics DreamWear finds most of its support for staying in place from the back strap and the physics of its shape. As a result, it doesn’t need to be adjusted too tightly to stay in place while you sleep.
Each mask package comes with one mask tubing frame size, 3 mask cushion sizes (S, M, L), and 2 soft mask sleeves that help increase comfort and decrease contact with the silicone.
Most of the population requires a medium sized mask frame. Small and large sizes are also available. I personally use a medium mask frame with a medium mask cushion. If you’re not sure what your sizes are for this mask, I suggest checking out this guide and printing out the documents to help you determine which mask size would work best for you.
So far, we’ve seen that the Philips Respironics DreamWear features great comfort, mask fit, and sleep mobility. As good as the DreamWear’s marks on these categories have been, I’m not quite ready to call it perfect. The DreamWear does have a few negatives in the category of durability.
Mask Frame Tubing
The mask frame itself has been quite resilient. Over the last few days, I’ve purposefully stretched and mishandled it; so far I haven’t had any problem with it.
Additionally, mask connection to the CPAP hose fits well and is very easy to remove. It also rotates 180 degrees which helps prevent broken joins or other parts.
Mask Strap Build
The mask strap looks a bit flimsy. My first impression of it was that it looks as though it would snap if it were tightened up too much over time. It’s made out of a stretchy fabric/foam material.
The part at which the mask strap attaches to the mask does seem quite resistant to breaking. It has a nice thickness around it that makes me feel like it definitely wouldn’t break easily.
Mask Cushion Connection
This is my least favorite section of this mask. As shown in the picture on the side, the mask tubing has a connecting coupling to the mask that is made of a hard plastic material.
To remove the mask cushion and replace it with another one, you’d have to separate it from the mask tubing by sheer force. A few problems with this:
- It takes a lot of pulling to do this
- It looks like you might cause tears to the cushion or mask tubing while separating them
- Frequent separation seems like it can lead to damage to the couplings. If the couplings are damaged, you can expect mask leakage and other problems
This can become a problem if you replace mask cushions often or when cleaning the mask, as you’ll need to remove the mask cushion from the mask tubing in these cases.
For a closer look at the coupling that I’m talking about, check out my Respironics DreamWear video review above.
The Philips Respironics DreamWear has proven to be a reliable, comfortable, and well designed nasal mask that has taken sleep mobility extremely seriously.
The simple and effective design is a big step up from other masks I’ve used. Being able to move my head around and sleep in whatever position I want is something that I shouldn’t be having to sacrifice in order to get good sleep. With the Respironics DreamWear, I don’t have to anymore.
A big part of this difference is due to having placed the CPAP hose on top of the mask. It’s a lot easier to sleep comfortably when you don’t have a hose weighing down the front of your face.
Although I experienced no nose bruising, I noticed that leakage started occurring after 17 cmH2O of therapy air. So if your prescription requires a higher setting than this, the DreamWear may not be for you.
The mask cushion and tubing are all made of a comfortable material that’s compatible with the skin. I’ve had the poor luck of wearing CPAP masks that feel like you have a piece of sticky rubber stuck to your face. Philips Respironics did a great job at selecting a material that was soft and elastic, yet resilient and comfortable.
Speaking of resilience, so far the mask frame has proven to be quite resilient and durable. However, if you do get this mask, I’d be careful with the mask cushion to mask tubing coupling points as they look a bit brittle. Additionally, the mask strap looks a bit flimsy and may be a weak point.
Overall, I give the mask a well deserved 96/100.
I’m definitely glad I gave this nasal mask a try. Definitely makes me reconsider all the time I spend using my other full face masks. Many of the reviews I’ve seen online share the sentiment that this mask is definitely one of the most comfortable and effective ones available in the market right now. It’s hosing placement, soft mask frame, comfortable mask cushion, and natural feel all contribute to making it one of the top nasal CPAP masks out there at the moment.
Hope you enjoyed this review! If you have any questions or have used the Phillips Respironics DreamWear and would like to add to the discussion, feel free to leave a comment below and I’ll reply as quickly as possible.