Video: Samantha Hess cuddles Mo Rocca in front of 6million on CBS Sunday Morning
“Rocca also gets close to Samantha Hess, who started a Portland, Ore.-based business that touts the benefits of touch.”
350,000 people read about professional cuddler Samantha Hess in The Oregonian
Hess is a professional cuddler. And before you go shaking your head and grousing that the wool is being pulled over someone’s eyes, know that she isn’t alone. She is one among a budding industry of healers sprouting up nationwide who believe that an intimate — though strictly non-sexual — snuggle by a stranger can bring contentment and solace to those who otherwise might go without.
News about Cuddle Up To Me reaches the London Daily Mail
She writes on her website: ‘Touch has the power to comfort us when we are sad, heal us when we are sick, encourage us when we feel lost, and above all else allow us to accept that we are not alone.’ Describing herself as the ‘happiest person you have ever met’, she adds: ‘My life is so full of positivity that I would love nothing more than to bring some of my positive energy into your world.’
Video: The Oregonian follows Samantha Hess
Shane introduced himself first. Sam opened her arms and hugged him. I stood around for a few seconds, then started making some still pictures, then started making some video clips, then started shooting from varied angles and focal lengths. A couple minutes later, I was done. Sam and Shane hugged for a few more moments, then finally finished their 3-minute hug which is captured in the video above.
USA Today declares Samantha Hess is a “one-woman hugging machine”
A dream was born. Hess started placing ads online promoting a cuddling business. She also posted flyers around Portland and handed out business cards. Her website then caught the attention of local media, and she appeared on Portland’s Ed Forman Show. Now she has more cuddling business than she can wrap her arms around. “I am booking sessions two weeks out.” Hess meets her clients at a neutral location before agreeing to a cuddling session.
Willamette Week announces Samantha Hess is the “Best Cuddler” in Portland
Samantha Hess is a touchy person. When I meet the 5-foot-tall, olive-skinned professional cuddler, I extend my hand for a handshake. Instead, she grabs my hand, massages it and asks me to look into her dark brown eyes. “This is how I make people feel comfortable,” she says as I feel my face redden. The Cuddle Up to Me owner says her ability to put people at ease is what makes her the best cuddler. And, she adds, “I’m the perfect cuddling size.”
Video: Samantha Hess reaches two million viewers on CNN
With moves like “Come to Mama” and “Tandem Bicycle,” Samantha Hess gives the rub on working as a professional cuddler. She says there is a skill here that is worth $60 an hour. “Having the right touch for the right person at the right time, is very specific,” said Hess. “For those in-between stages in life, it is nice to have something to pick you back up a little.”
Cuddle Up To Me is the most exciting company to debut in Portland in years. From CNN to Yahoo, hundreds of thousands of Oregonians and millions of people worldwide heard about Samantha Hess and her professional cuddling service. What follows are some of the endorsements she received from clients, business partners and colleagues:
“Cuddling is more than a service Samantha provides. She wants to break down the boundaries that prevent us from literally embracing each other. She is a loving presence in the world, determined to help others reach their full potential. Her book Touch: The Power of Human Connection is on track to become a classic, inspiring hundreds of thousands of people to improve their relationships, enhance their self-esteem and achieve deeper intimacy. Samantha is a woman of exceptional character whose creativity, depth and compassion inspires everyone around her. It is an honor to be her business partner and friend.”
—Chris in Portland
“After meeting Samantha Hess, I feel so much better. Our cuddle time gave me a different outlook on life. I had no idea what I was missing. I am a big fan now and look forward to our next session. She is encouraging, kind and sincere.
—Steve in Vancouver
“Professional cuddling is an idea whose time has come. We all desire physical touch and the service Samantha Hess provides is sincere and safe. The publicity she received is nothing short of incredible and I look forward to seeing her company grow in the years ahead. Cuddle Up To Me promises to be a fascinating project. Her retail store is going to be a huge success and I am excited about her book. Samantha is quickly becoming the most famous woman in Portland.”
—Mateo in Portland
“Her ability to put people at ease is unparalleled. Samantha Hess is a healing presence in the world and I am excited to see what Cuddle Up To Me accomplishes. Her company is going to inspire a lot of people. We are at the birth of something extraordinary.”
—Betsy in Portland
“At first, the concept of professional cuddling seemed unusual but it dawned on me that everyone I know seeks affection and attention. It is a fundamental need. Samantha Hess is ahead of her time, developing a new industry that promises to ease loneliness, overcome depression and improve self-confidence. We are not meant to be alone. Her cuddling company is going to change the way people interact.”
—Robert in Vancouver
“Samantha Hess is a phenomenon. Her story is everywhere in the media. I first read about Cuddle Up To Me in Willamette Week last summer. Her article in The Oregonian reached over 350,000 people. Next came Fox News, KGW Television and radio interviews across the city. Days later she appeared on CNN with an estimated audience of two million people. Newspaper articles about Samantha spread across the globe. I even read about her in the London Daily Mail. When was the last time someone from Portland had this kind of impact? Samantha Hess is not just the flavor of the month. She is emerging as a major media figure. Between her book, upcoming talk show appearances and a possible reality television show, Samantha is turning her 15 minutes of fame into a substantive career.”
—Kim in Hillsboro
“As an entrepreneur, I immediately appreciated the commercial potential of cuddling. Beyond food and shelter, physical touch is the most basic need we have. Thousands of people have no one to hold or comfort them. Samantha Hess provides a service that promises to ease loneliness, overcome depression and promote happiness. I could not be more proud of her. Cuddle Up To Me is the most exciting project of my career and I could not have a better business partner.”
—Derek in Hillsboro
Samantha Hess offers a service nearly everyone on the planet needs. We can count on two hands the number of people in the United States who cuddle for a living. In a nation of over 300 million people that seems almost impossible, but this industry is just debuting. No one but Samantha approaches cuddling with as much sincerity or sophistication. Her understanding of the science behind human touch — known as kinesiology — is what distinguishes her in the marketplace. Her clients rave about her ability to put them at ease. She is a relaxation therapist, a counselor, a comforting friend and a powerful voice reminding us to deepen our connections to each other. I know this sounds lofty, but I believe her new company is going to change the world. Samantha Hess is here to help hundreds of thousands of people find balance in their lives.
—Kellie in Vancouver
“Samantha Hess makes a difference for our community. Her work with the Oregon Food Bank speaks to her character. Despite the pressures of creating a new company and working 50 to 60 hour weeks, she shows up for her charity work every week without fail. Her selflessness and sincerity make her a model human being and a perfect emissary for people seeking deeper intimacy in their lives. Cuddle Up To Me promises to change thousands of lives for the better.”
—Kimberly in Vancouver
“After meeting in public, Samantha came to my house for a cuddling session. I lead a very isolated life so I really appreciate this service. From the moment she arrived, Samantha was professional, respectful and caring. She held me close and made me feel like I was the most important person on earth. When the session came to an end we had a great conversation; she looked directly into my eyes and never watched the clock. This experience was warm and enriching. I would recommend Samantha to anyone looking for a great interpersonal experience.”
—Stephen in Portland