and the story goes to tell .. no I am NOT the electric blanket-type of a person, NOT to mention jade or any sort of supposedly-healing rock for that matter . but after one hectic day in ShangHai we stayed at a house one night who had a Korean electic mattress – WITH Oriental stones embedded – on TOP of the wide bed . I was even too tired to take that off the bed and besides being a chilly night I doze off . and what-da-ya-know ? I had one of the most soothing sleep I had since dozing off AT the last couture show in Paris . there-after returning home I took out my own electric blanket my mother had bestowed upon me long~ ago and used it sufficiently until it went broke a few months later . (hey, you didn’t think I was the sort of techie who would buy another electric blanket even if I had one working ?!) then bought almost the identical electric mattress I remembered from China .
yes you guessed it : there are electric blankets in Korea but mattress sell uncomparibly because it is an extension of the Korean ondol floor both on the floor as well as on the bed . and again in the arena of small electronics independent manufacturers noted in their own field sell best than your usual conglomerate electronics branch in the likes of SamSung or LG .
considering the long~ ondol instinct embedded in Korean culture people have flocked out to purchase electric mattress in the age of IMF AND continuing recession, thus makers have added more, more and out-right outrageous specifications to their existing products than bringing the retail price down -_-
the best place to buy for the beginner is at your nearest SuperMart where they will have a whole section by now . most important to feel the surface for yourself and NOT to buy solely on the internet (where the price is the cheapest like in any product nowadays) because many have ordered from posted pictures only to find some too thin, for especially on the health-rock-embedded models it has to hold rigid on top of the bed so go see the thickness for yourself . I am sure no one will complain if a foreigner tries for him/herself on the spot .
below are the myriad of choice you have with much variations in material AND the rocks embedded . no health effect is proven scientifically so far but has to do with the still-many left myteries of the Orient alongside the cures of accupunture AND ginseng . some fabric AND/OR rock combination will effect your body AND mind depending upon each person just as you would react to waters of certain Hot Springs dispersed around the Korean Penninsula .
[ Available Sizes of Korean Electric Blanket or Mattress ]
- smallest would be portable Electric cushions for the chair still coming in single, double AND triple for the sofa,
- single mattress for one person to lie on,
- double mattress where temporature controls are separately divided for advanced models,
- triple mattresses for king size beds but you should measure each for different manufacturers’ products may NOT reflect American bed size standards .
[ Price of Korean Electric Blanket or Mattress in Double Size ]
- W 40000 in basic Double Size Electric Mattress,
- W 70000 for Quality Electric Mattress with refined texture and threadings,
- W140,000 for Electric Mattress with a mixture of Jade and Ceramic,
- W240,000 and more for combinations of the above plus actual gold lining,
- electric bills for any of models made in the Millennium is negligable for all is made for this in mind .
[ Various Material and Functions in Korean Electric Blanket or Matress ]
- jade and ceramic retains heat after turning off, where some are powdered for those who don’t want rocky surfaces .
- infrared remote control,
- surface coating includes : water-proof, mites repellent or even block electro-magnetic waves,
- whole lot of materials in cotton, yellow soil, silver lining, charcoal,
[ and some dubious applications ]
- liquid type – water circulates to heat the mattress,
- massage capabilities built in thicker bed-types,
[ Noteable Manufacturers and Brands ]
- Hanil Medical Supplies – most popular brand with exquisite fabrics, Doubles W90000+
- ilwol – becoming the next best seller with many variations, Doubles W50000 ~ 100,000
- GooDeulJang – offers colors pink and purple-based colors other than your usual beige and brown lines, Deluxe Doubles W140,000
- HanSol Medical Supplies – sell more electric mattresses that resemble home floor tiles of wood pattern, Basic Doubles W40000 ~ 60000
- BoKuk – sell more simple electric mattresses that fold for storage similar to futons along-side blankets, Basic Doubles W40000 ~ 70000
if your local supermart does NOT carry any model above, fine if you like the surface, look AND the price . for larger supermarts offer product support on their own and the manufacturers as an option . although current models have multiple safety features built-in even on the cheapest ones, you would also like to check if they are inscribe to a well-known insurance company – it would show clearly on the box or wrapping .
– Korea Tech BLog, November 2009 –
[ January 2012 Update ]
although not as with harsh Winters as North Korea, Southern dwellers enjoy a distinct 4 Seasons and there the notion that Korean immigrants to the States prefer Mid-West or the more crowded North-East than Southern California where a bulk of the early settlers went searchin’ for their own ‘Dreamin’
I am in nature also a soft-bed person, however after the trip to China fore-told above bought the jade-stone mixed iLWol matt and threw it over our high-bed and have survived another Korean Winter in ooze . yes, we had an electric blanket but went kaput just-in-time and I have also lived in Japan with the warmth of the good ol’Kotatsu under-heated flat-sitting table where an afternoon nap can be quite soothing .
now the manufacturers have thrown-in all sorts of mind and body (short of the Soul) healing stones for marketing and iLWol still dominating the market a new concept arose last Winter from Solgo Bio Medicalintroducing heat-emitting carbon conductors resembling the Korean-tradition of charcoal heating as a safer source of warmth ridding of conventional electric-heating wires .
in theory : all this is supposed to increased health-aiding infrared rays while reducing harmful electomagnetic waves .
ofcourse matts are meant for the increasing populace of the elders and designs as such and they really are selling the fantasy of the noble kingdom where traditionally normal people have had no access to :
all controlled by their intelligent computer chip //
it really is daunting to choose one from a wide models for you have to sleep a full night to realize which rock or soil-type is effecting you mind and body . so it might be best to go for the best-selling one for elders would have exchanged enough experience on-Line nowadays . and by on means are the rock or soil-embedded matts cheaper than simple conventional electric blankets while the price difference also come depending on for a single person or more and whether the heat can be controlled independantly for each side ..
( October 2013 Supplement ) two Months after the above Post, we found a tumour on the stomach of our oldest cat . it was cancer although it had NOT spread throughout her body . ever since moving into an old apartment in Central SEOUL, we had been using electric mattress for cats also, since these older walls transmit outside temperature . and even though there is not proof yet that these cause cancer, I have made up my mind NOT to use anymore humans and pets alike . so if you must : I recommend you purchase the latest model, as they are tweaked to output lower due to increasing scrutinization like me now . while it is tempting to have such warmth throughout freezing nights at miniscule electric bill, let’s see if we can survive this Winter .. ofcourse the choice is yours .