She said she got the idea for the Snazzy Napper, a pillow, blanket and eye mask combination, after she was unable to get comfortable on a flight from Atlanta to London.
“After I returned home, I kept thinking about a product like the Snazzy Napper and wondering if anything like it existed,” she said. After doing some research, she realized there was no other product quite like it on the market.
“Other blanket-like products existed, but I was really focused on providing a comfortable way for travelers to have privacy, keep out light and be warm at the same time,” Wilson said.
A year after making her first prototype and shortly after her first TV commercial, Wilson said the product really gained popularity.
“CNN called me one day and asked if I could come down to [the studio] and speak about the Snazzy Napper. They did a segment where a news reporter went to a subway, used the product on MARTA and recorded people’s responses,” Wilson said.
Talk show hosts like Ellen DeGeneres, Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien also featured the blanket on their shows.
“I’ve had sales from Brazil, Europe and Australia and customers write me with requests or just to say how much they’ve enjoyed it,” Wilson said.
She recently donated about 100 blankets to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.
“I figured people with long layovers or travelers who had to spend the night in the airport could put them to good use,” Wilson said.
Since the product was first manufactured in 2010, Wilson said she has sold about 6,000, including one to College Park business owner and resident Jason Freeman.
“I play in a band and I noticed one of my bandmates using a Snazzy Napper while we were riding in a car on a long distance trip. I thought it was a great idea because I could cover most of my face as I slept,” he said.