London-based Aseptic Studio has designed an ergonomic cushion in the shape of a headless torso to provide physical and emotional support for lonely millennials living in cities.
Called The Mannequin, the cushion resembles an upper body with extra-long arms that can be wrapped around the user for comfort. The product aims to reduce feelings of stress and loneliness experienced by young people in urban areas.
"I studied menswear and tailoring at London College of Fashion, and I made my own mannequin to dress my clothes, which ended up lying around my living room," said Tsun Lai, who founded Aseptic Studio earlier this year.
"I began using it to cuddle when I was by myself and lonely. The more I used it, the better I felt," he said. "It is fascinating how being hugged can reduce stress and negative thinking."
The product features a cotton shell, stuffed with clumps of soft polyester balls that hold their form better than regular stuffing.
The neck of the cushion has extra padding and tilts forward to support the user's own neck and improve their posture. It also features a pair of long arms that serve as armrests or barriers to the heat given off by laptops.
"The Mannequin addresses the shortcomings of conventional cushions and provides added physical and emotional comfort that is personal, functional, and ergonomic," said Lai. "It fits snugly no matter if you are leaning, hugging or sleeping on it."
The Mannequin previewed at London Design Fair, which took place during London Design Festival.
Many young designers are finding innovative solutions to the problems faced by young people in urban living environments.
Royal College of Art graduate Yu Li created a portable kitchen that is aimed at millennials with limited space in their homes, while ÉCAL graduate Yesul Jang's bed with storage capacity is designed for compact living.