Nectar vs. Purple Mattress Comparison
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Nectar and Purple are two of the most popular online mattress brands - and for good reason! Both mattresses are well designed, well made and well reviewed by people just like you. If you’ve narrowed your search down to these two options, you may be curious about the differences between Nectar and Purple.
The article below will compare and contrast Purple vs. Nectar. We will cover factors including construction, firmness, price, sleep experience, and more. Both products are great options, but this guide will help you choose the best mattress for your specific situation.
Keep in mind that this article will focus on the flagship models for each company. Both offer a variety of products, but the comparison below will look exclusively at the flagship Purple and Nectar mattresses (“The Purple Mattress” and “Nectar”, respectively). We have full in-depth reviews for both Nectar and Purple, so you can read through those for an even closer look at each option.
Mattress Construction Comparison
The way a mattress is designed and constructed greatly contributes to its comfort, support, and longevity. A good place to start when comparing the Nectar vs. Purple mattress is to look at the construction of each bed.
Nectar is a fully foam mattress. It’s made up of four unique layers:
- Support Core layer - 5.75 inches of a dense polyfoam that provides support for your body and a base for the other mattress layers
- Adaptive Memory Foam layer - 1.5 inches of responsive memory foam that helps adapt to the shape of your body
- Gel Memory Foam layer - 3 inches gel memory foam specifically formulated to help with contouring and cooling
- Quilted Gel Memory Foam layer - thin layer of quilted, gel-infused memory foam for cooling and airflow
- Tencel cover - a soft mattress cover made of Tencel fabric that helps wick away sweat and improve airflow
The construction of the Nectar mattress is designed to optimize the bed for comfort, support, and cooling. Each layer serves a unique purpose. The layers come together to form a comfortable bed that’s supportive in all sleep positions, and that will keep you sleeping cool even on the hottest of summer nights.
Because of the all-foam construction, Nectar can be used with almost any bed type. You can use a normal box spring, traditional frame, platform bed, and even an adjustable base.
Purple is also an all-foam mattress, but it’s quite different than Nectar. Purple uses a unique proprietary material, meaning the material is only used in Purple products. The mattress has three layers:
- Support layer - 4 inches of medium-firm polyurethane foam for base support
- Transition layer - 3.25 inches of medium-soft plush polyurethane foam for compression support and pressure point relief
- Comfort layer - 2 inches of the Purple Grid, a Hyper-Elastic Polymer that’s constructed in a grid pattern. This layer is designed to help keep the mattress cool by increasing airflow, and also helps to relieve pressure on sensitive areas like pressure points and joints
- Knit cover - a soft mattress cover made of a knit fabric (29% Viscose, 67% Polyester, 4% Lycra). The cover is designed for comfort and breathability but also has fire retardant properties
Like the Nectar, the Purple mattress will work on just about any bed frame setup - or even directly on the floor.
The biggest difference in the Purple mattress is the unique Purple Grid. This helps to improve both support and cooling and is one of the reasons for the popularity of the Purple Mattress.
Firmness is essentially a measure of how hard or soft the bed feels when you lay down on it; and how much “give” there is to allow your body to sink into the mattress. It is largely determined by the materials used to construct the mattress, with foam density being a big factor.
Firmness is a hugely important consideration when choosing a mattress. You want something that’s soft enough to be comfortable, yet firm enough to provide the support your body needs.
There’s no “perfect” firmness level for everyone, as preferences vary significantly. Firmness will be affected by the position you tend to sleep in, and your body type and weight. Back sleepers generally get the best spinal alignment on firmer beds than side sleepers and heavier sleepers will want something firmer so they don’t sink into the mattress too much.
Most people do well in a medium firm bed. We categorize a medium firm bed as anything that rates from a 5-7 on the firmness scale, with 1 being the softest, and 10 being the most firm.
Both the Purple and Nectar mattresses are medium-firm beds. The Purple mattress feels slightly more firm than the Nectar. Nectar is around a 6.0 out of 10, while Purple is more like a 6.5 out of 10.
Based on firmness alone, we would recommend the Purple to folks who prefer a somewhat firmer bed. For soft-but-not-too-soft people, the Nectar is a good choice. That said, the difference in firmness between the two mattresses is fairly small.
When choosing a mattress, there are a variety of factors that you should consider. The end goal of mattress shopping is to get a comfortable bed that will help you sleep soundly. Thus, you should consider anything that affects the overall sleep experience.
The most important factors are firmness (discussed above), temperature control, motion transfer, responsiveness, bounce, and edge support. These sleep experience factors are discussed in more detail below.
Temperature control refers to the ability of the mattress to regulate temperature and prevent overheating. If you’ve ever slept on an old memory foam mattress in the summer, you likely know that they can get hot. Most modern foam mattresses have been designed to regulate temperature more efficiently, but they will still sleep hotter than a traditional innerspring mattress or a hybrid mattress.
Both the Nectar and Purple mattress do a pretty good job of controlling temperature. Foam will always retain some body heat, but both beds have design features that combat this.
The Purple generally sleeps a bit cooler, as it has the unique grid pattern which is designed to improve airflow. This helps draw body heat away from your body and gives air a chance to flow through the mattress.
The Nectar mattress may sleep a bit warmer than Purple because it has a lower airflow rating. That said, it has both cooling gel-infused memory foam and quilted memory foam, both of which aim to boost the cooling capabilities.
Because of the Purple Grid, the Purple mattress it tends to score better in heat retention tests. If you live in a hot climate or tend to sleep very warm, you should closely consider this factor.
Motion transfer refers to how much movement on one side of the bed is felt on the other. For instance, if your partner gets up in the night to go to the bathroom, does the whole bed move, or can you continue sleeping undisturbed?
This is a very important factor for couples, and particularly for those who sleep lightly. It won’t be as important for those who sleep alone, but it should still be considered.
Foam mattresses are typically the best type of mattress to buy if you’re concerned about motion transfer. Both the Nectar and Purple perform well in motion isolation tests. There is not a significant difference between the two in this regard.
Responsiveness refers to the way the mattress reacts to the application of weight and pressure. In other words, how the bed contours to the shape of your body. This is a very important factor as a responsive bed will help maintain spinal alignment and increase comfort.
Both beds are foam, which tends to be quite responsive. In this comparison, the Purple comes out with a slight edge, mostly due to the Purple Grid.
Resilience and Bounce
Bounce refers to the amount of immediate response to motion. In general, foam mattresses like the Purple and Nectar are not very bouncy. This is because they have good motion isolation, and they don’t have springs like traditional mattresses. This can mean that they aren’t great for sex, as they tend to be more difficult to move around in.
Foam mattresses will always compress under the weight of your body - and resilience refers to the amount of time it takes for the mattress to decompress after you get up from a night of sleep. For resilience, both mattresses score fairly well. There is not a noticeable difference between the two.
In terms of longevity and durability, both mattresses hold up well. They are made with high quality, dense foam that should stand up to the test of time. The manufacturers claim that the beds will last 7-10+ years.
Edge support refers to the strength and support on the edges of the mattress. This is important for people who tend to sit or sleep on the side of the bed a lot, and may also be important for heavier people.
Neither the Purple nor the Nectar have reinforced edges, so edge support is so-so on both. If edge support is very important for you, it may be wise to look for a mattress with reinforced edges. For most people, this is not a large consideration.
Off-gassing and Smell
Foam mattresses like the Nectar and Purple come shipped to your door compressed in boxes. They are tightly sealed and then rolled, and when you unpack them they will take a while to expand to their full size.
During this process, it’s common to notice some smell and off-gassing coming from the mattresses. This is normal and nothing to worry about - the smell is not harmful in any way. In most cases, the smell will go away in a few hours to a few days. We recommend keeping the mattress in a well-ventilated room for a day or two before sleeping on it.
Both mattresses have essentially the same level of off-gassing, so this should not be a big factor in your decision between Purple vs Nectar. Manufacturers typically recommend letting the new mattresses off-gas for at least 24 hours before use.
Shipping, Trial, Warranty, and Returns
When buying a mattress online, it’s important to consider factors such as shipping cost, free trial period, warranty, and return policy. The trial period is particularly important, as this is the period of time that you can test out the mattress before deciding if you want to keep it or not.
Another thing to consider is whether or not the mattress company provides pick up and removal of your old mattress. In this case, Nectar does offer this service, while Purple does not.
Lastly, you’ll want to think about the longevity of the mattress, as well as the length of the warranty. You’ll notice that Nectar actually offers a lifetime warranty on their mattresses, which is unmatched in the industry.
|How is it shipped?||Bed-in-a-box||Bed-in-a-box|
|Old mattress removal?||Available for extra fee||Not available|
|Sleep trial length||365 nights||100 nights|
|Return cost and process||Free returns; company picks up||Free returns; company picks up|
|Warranty length||“Forever” lifetime warranty||10-year warranty|
Prices, Sizes, and Value
As with most purchases, the price may be a factor in your search. Both mattresses are in a similar price range - and both are far cheaper than what you would find in your local mattress store. That said, there are some price differences, listed below.
As you can see from the pricing table, the Nectar mattress is cheaper than the Purple at every size. If you’re on a very tight budget, this could be a factor in your decision making. The Nectar also has a longer trial period and a longer warranty.
With that said, a relatively small price difference like this should probably not be a significant factor in your decision. Since you only buy a mattress every 10 years or so, a small difference in price is fairly insignificant.
Nectar vs. Purple Mattress - Which One Should You Buy
You’ve seen our comparison of Nectar vs Purple - now you should be armed with the information you need to make an informed decision. Even so, we know that it can be a difficult choice. We created a summary below that helps define some of the biggest differentiators between these two mattresses.
Buy the Nectar mattress if you:
1. Want a longer trial period.
The Nectar offers an industry-leading 365-night trial period. This means you have a full year to decide if the mattress is right for you!
2. Want a slightly softer mattress.
The Nectar is around a 6.0 out of 10 on the firmness scale, while the Purple is more of a 6.5-7.0. If you prefer a slightly softer feel, go with the Nectar.
3. Want to save a bit of money.
The Nectar pricing is a bit lower than the Purple, so you can save a few dollars and get a similarly well-made mattress.
Buy the Purple mattress if you:
1. Want a firmer mattress.
The Purple is slightly firmer than the Nectar, with a firmness rating of 6.5 compared to 6.0 on the Nectar mattress. It is not a huge difference, but it is noticeable.
2. Tend to sleep hot
The Purple mattress has excellent cooling due to its grid pattern. If you tend to sleep hot, or you live in a warm climate, Purple is a great choice.