Like anyone else with a social media account, I’ve seen the myriad of ads showcasing Purple and their seemingly impossible mattresses and sheets for years.
Since they came onto the scene with their Goldilocks ads, the original Purple mattress has gotten popular enough to garner scores of lovers and haters alike. Now, Purple is back with a brand new version that doesn’t come in a box and features innersprings! Is it worth the hype? Roll the tape!
Don’t Call It a Comeback
Purple’s claim to fame since they branched out into mattresses with their 2015 Kickstarter (before that they used their patented cushioning to, among other things, prevent bedsores in wheelchairs) is their super-soft, stretchy, breathable mattresses. From their original Kickstarter success, they’ve expanded to offer sheets, pillows, bed bases, basically anything you could possibly need to make bedtime a 100% Purple experience (they even have a pet bed Kickstarter running right now).
When Purple launched, they followed the style of other “bed-in-a-box” manufacturers like Casper and Leesa. Your bed came to you vac-packed and rolled up in a box, you unfurled it and let it breathe, then did, well, bed stuff. The key difference with Purple, however, is that the main thing you’re laying on isn’t a layer of foam, but their proprietary cushioning material. It looks more like something you’d pack eggs in than a mattress (hence, the infamous “egg drop” test), but the sectioned material is supportive, squishy, and breathable, making it a perfect replacement for a memory foam top layer.
As It Was, So It Shall Be
So why the relaunch? Purple had a good thing going, quickly gathering a large following and running with the likes of Casper and Leesa as they shipped beds-in-a-box to seemingly everyone who watched their Goldilocks videos.
The answer is support.
Memory foam mattresses are wonderfully versatile. They’re easy to ship, great to drag from room to room (while still boxed), and benefit from a wider array of materials to choose from in their construction as compared to traditional innerspring mattresses. But even the best memory foam is still a marshmallow pretending to be a traditional mattress. The new “responsive support coils” (that’s “springs” to anyone who doesn’t speak Marketese) are individually wrapped to be completely silent and give more support than a foam mattress alone can provide.
The coils are sandwiched by a foam layer and topped by 2, 3, or 4 inches of Purple’s Smart Comfort Grid (the original Purple mattress has 2 inches on top of a foam base). The more Smart Comfort Grid material, the softer the mattress will feel. The Grid (if you don’t read that in Jeff Daniels’ voice, lose two points) is temperature-neutral and its open design promotes airflow so that heat doesn’t build up overnight.
So what does all of this mean? It’s simultaneously the cushiest and most supportive mattress that Purple has ever built. It’s also the heaviest. Weighing in between 120 and 160 pounds, with rigid construction, this Purple isn’t going to fit in a box.
But How Does It Sleep?
At the end of the day, though, all the material science in the world isn’t going to change that Purple 4 is just a big sandwich of materials if it doesn’t provide a good sleeping experience.
Spoiler: it does.
I was a little worried that the 4-inch Purple layer was going to be too soft after sleeping for years on my firm (but forgiving) Leesa mattress. In fact, my wife did complain that there was a little bit of sinking towards my side that first night. But after getting used to sleeping on a softer mattress again, neither of us has any complaint at all.
I’ve avoided soft mattresses for a long time because, while they’re cushy, they often sleep hot and don’t provide enough support. The Purple 4 is very different. The Smart Comfort Grid heats up a little bit, like you’d expect any top layer of a mattress to do, but it doesn’t get overly warm. Especially if I’ve worked out hard in the later afternoon or early evening, I tend to radiate heat well into the night. I haven’t woken up in a sweat once since the Purple 4 arrived (something that would happen with some regularity on the Leesa).
As far as support goes, it’s just as supportive, if not more so, than my firmer Leesa mattress. The added benefit of the deep Smart Comfort Grid layer is that I can rest comfortably in more positions. Sleeping on my side has always resulted in me waking up with a completely dead arm or major pain in my shoulder. With the Purple 4, that’s not a problem.
The Sheets Make The Bed
The other major component of any bed is the sheets. You can have the softest, most supportive mattress in the world, but if your sheets are scratchy or don’t allow airflow, you still won’t sleep well. The Purple sheets (made of bamboo fiber instead of cotton) promise stretchy, smooth, silky comfort. At $114 for a queen set, I expected a lot.
When I finally got them on (I missed the convenient tabs of the Casper sheets that denote where the short ends of the fitted sheet are), and laid down, all doubt evaporated and I was annoyed that I hadn’t been sleeping on these sheets sooner. They have the softness of jersey sheets, but none of the snagging or stuffiness that material brings. The sheets are just as breathable as the rest of Purple’s products. They’re the best sheets I’ve ever slept on. Period.
Pluto Pillows Are Exactly What You Want
Stars aligned when I was pulling together this review. Purple sent my mattress and sheets but was all out of their pillows (made from the same Smart Comfort Grid material as the mattress). Luckily, Pluto Pillow had reached out asking if I wanted to try their personalized pillows.
The process is painless. You go to plutopillow.com, take a survey about how you feel about your current pillow, and they create a custom pillow based on your answers, adjusting the size of the foam core, amount of fill, and gusset.
I took the online quiz hewing towards the “supportive, yet soft” side of the pillow spectrum, while my daughter (who was still using her pillow from her toddler bed and insisted that she be included) turned the “soft and cushy” to 11. After taking our quizzes it was an impatient seven days of waiting while Pluto Pillow made our pillows to order and shipped them out.
When they arrived, it was apparent that the customization isn’t just a gimmick. My daughter’s pillow was at least two inches thicker than mine and had the “sink in” quality that she was looking for. Mine was perfect for my needs – it was just soft enough and didn’t heat up overnight. I still love my HiBR pillow, but nothing beats personalized customization.
Pluto is running a sale right now, so you can grab a perfectly personalized pillow for $15 off. Usually $84, it’s worth it to have a pillow that’s personally tailored to your exact needs.
Sweet Dreams for You, Insomnia for Your Wallet
Speaking of price, what’s personalized, perfect sleep going to cost you?
That’s the part that’s going to keep your wallet tossing and turning. The new Purple mattress starts at $1,599 for a Queen-sized, Purple 2 all the way up to $2,799 for a Purple 4. It’s a decided jump over the $999 original mattress, but it’s worth it.
Purple has created their best mattress yet and, especially if you need more support than a foam mattress provides, it should be the first mattress you consider. You’ve got 100 days to decide and a 10-year warranty on the mattress, so you’re covered.
Personally, between the Purple 4, the Purple Sheets, and the Pluto Pillow, I’m getting the best sleep I’ve ever gotten in my life (except maybe when I was marathon training and would pass out from exhaustion at the end of the day…but I could’ve been sleeping on a rock and slept soundly). If you’re waking up with aches and pains, or your foam mattress just isn’t giving you what you need, head to Purple.com and get started.
Thanks to Purple and Pluto Pillow for providing materials for this review. Opinions are my own.