Surprisingly it’s been what seems like an age since Resmed released their Airfit P10 nasal pillow mask. The P10 mask made headlines due to it’s small size and light weight. In addition, it offered one of the easiest to use nasal pillow masks on the market.
This mask has been one of our mainstays since its release. When comparing this mask to other nasal pillow options, most CPAP users prefer the P10 as it feels lighter and less obtrusive to wear.
With that – let’s have a closer look.
First up, let’s get this mask unboxed. It comes in a box design that is small and compact, like the mask itself.
The mask itself is neatly packed away in a neat little groove specifically made for the AirFit P10 mask. The headgear and medium cushion is already attached to the mask frame, with the small and large cushions neatly packed in their own little slots. In the packaging, you will find the mask itself, spare (Small and Large) pillows, and the mask manual (on top of the packaging itself).
It may seem obvious, but it feels incredibly small and light in the hand. But there is much more to what makes a good mask than this.
Size and weight comparisons
As you can see, the Air it P10 nasal pillow mask is lighter than it’s competitors, including the highly rated Swift FX nasal pillow mask.
And this is in the ‘naked’ version of the competing masks. Put some clothes (i.e. the wraps supplied with the Swift FX) on and they are heavier again.
Overall, the P10 feels smaller as well. Comparing it side by side the Respironics Nuance and the Fisher and Paykel Pilairo, it appears less intrusive, and provides better visibility.
Now, size and weight isn’t important to everyone. Most CPAP users are simply looking for a mask that isn’t too heavy, and that is comfortable without restricting their view. This appears to be the case for the P10, as well as most other nasal pillow masks. However, how heavy a mask feels on the face can be affected by other factors as well.
The nasal pillow
I like the nasal pillow cushion on the P10. They are soft, comfortable, and mould to the inside of your nose beautifully. The double wall cushion means you don’t have to wear it tight at all, and the cone shape of the cushions means that it is retained in the nose if you turn from side to side during the night. In fact, ResMed have not changed the cushion design all that much since their original design on the swift, because, well, they haven’t had to. It is a design that just works.
The nasal cushions on the P10 use a slighter softer silicone than the Swift FX, and should be gentler on the nose.
However, the cushion still has minimal contact with the nose. Great for those seeking a minimalist design, but people who have particularly sensitive noses, this small surface area can become irritated. For these people, the Fisher and Paykel Brevida or Respironics DreamWear might be worth a try (they spread the force across a larger surface area). An alternative is an over-the-nose mask instead like the Fisher and Paykel Eson 2 mask.
The headgear itself admittedly feels like it will stretch over time. Resmed has admitted as much, and indicated that the strap will need to be replaced after about 3 months. I found that 6 months is about the limit, but for those who are more frugal amongst us (me included), I found that I could fold the strap over at about the headgear splits in two, and sew it up, effectively re-tightening the headgear and getting some more use out of it. So, it’s not as durable as previous versions of cpap pillow masks, or even some of its competitors.
For those of you who have health insurance, you will probably just get a new mask and/or strap given to you in this time anyways. So, you needn’t worry.
Comfort and Quietness
I found the nasal pillows to be slightly softer than the Swift FX, and the headgear has a wide enough surface area for its depth to make it reasonably comfortable to wear whilst side sleeping.
Resmed have removed the swivel from the Cpap pillow mask now, citing that it is no longer needed now that the mask vent is now a quieter, and less forceful mesh-type integrated into the mask frame itself. Largely, this is true, as the airflow seems gentler with the P10 mask compared to the Swift FX.
The mask as whole only has 3 parts. Now, this is brilliant for cleaning the mask. Also, it makes the mask lighter. One issue I have, and it might not be an issue for you, is spare parts. For example, if the hose is cracked on the AirFit p10, you need to buy the whole mask frame and hose assembly. The cushion and headgear, although, are replaced as desperate units. These, I suppose are the parts of the mask that will need replacing first, and I can understand the reasons for this. However, in Australia, everything costs a lot more (where RRP on most masks is between 250 and 300 Australian dollyaroos), and its makes maintaining ones CPAP mask out of reach for some.
I found the P10 to be one if the most comfortable nasal pillow masks to use everyday. Like any nasal pillow mask, it takes a little bit of time for your nose to get used to it, but I found the P10’s silicone to be soft on the nose. Its really easy to put on and take off, however it is prone to slide off the head for people with long hair (there isn’t enough friction to hold the back strap in place). Admittedly, the Swift FX has the same issue, and of the pillow masks only the Respironics Nuance Pro has a ‘sticky’ back strap which helps reduce this.