If you are looking at buying a mattress online, you have undoubtedly come across the Purple and Nectar mattresses. They are very popular and for good reason. They are quality mattresses with many impressive attributes.
So, how do you decide between them? To help make your buying process an easy one, I have broken them down based on their construction, and who I think should get one over the other.
Which will be the mattress for you? Read on for my full comparison.
- Firmness: 7/10
- Motion Isolation: Lose
- Edge Support: Win
- Best for: Back or Stomach Sleepers
- Firmness: 6/10
- Motion Isolation: Win
- Edge Support: Lose
- Best for: Side Sleepers
- They have similar bases layers.
- They are designed to give both pressure relief and support.
- Nectar has memory foam layers, while Purple has a proprietary gel grid.
- Nectar has a classic memory foam feel, and Purple has a unique, springy gel feeling.
- The Nectar is softer than the Purple.
- The mattress is 9.5″ tall.
- The cover is soft and thin.
- The first layer is 2” of a Purple Smart Comfort Grid. It is a hyper-elastic polymer with a squishy feeling.
- Next, there are 3.5” of a Plush Comfort Foam.
- The base layer is 4” of polyfoam.
- The mattress is 11” tall.
- The cover is soft and woven together with Tencel fabric. There is 1” of gel memory foam quilted into it.
- Next, there is a 3” layer of a soft, slow-responding, gel memory foam.
- Then, there is around 1” of a foam transition layer.
- Finally, the base layer is around 6” thick.
- They have similar feeling covers, but the Nectar has gel memory foam quilted into the cover. This adds another level of pressure relief.
- Because of the memory foam in its top layer, Nectar has a classic memory foam feel. The Purple has a very unique hyper-elastic polymer grid. It is firm but pressure relieving at the same time. It has a unique, springy feel.
- You will have less of a feeling of getting “stuck” on the Purple mattress. The gel grid responds quickly, so you should be able to move around easily.
- This gel grid also allows for more airflow than the Nectar does. The Purple may sleep cooler than the Nectar.
- Both mattresses should offer nice pressure relief. The gel memory foam on top of the Nectar is very soft, and the Purple collapses under your weight to relieve pressure on your shoulders and hips.
- They have similar base layers.
I felt like the Nectar was a 6/10 in terms of firmness, while the Purple was a 7/10. The Nectar is definitely softer than the Purple.
With the Nectar, I felt best when I was on my side. I sunk in and felt great pressure relief on my shoulders and hips. I did feel good support when I was on my back, but I needed more support when I was on my stomach.
On the Purple, I felt better when I was on my back and stomach. The gel grid collapses under my hips, but the rest of the mattress stays flat and supportive. I felt a little pressure when I was on my side.
In terms of feel, the Nectar has a classic memory foam feel where you really sink into the mattress. The Purple has a unique squishy, responsive gel feel. It feels firm and supportive but pressure relieving at the same time.
See the firmness and feel differences in the videos below.
See how the slow-sinking Nectar might be best for side sleepers. Will it make the pressure melt away for you?
Between the two mattresses, I believe the Nectar is better with motion isolation. During my tests, I saw less disturbance. Also, I felt less of Marten’s movements when he rolled around on the other side of the bed.
I think this is due to the memory foam in the top layer of the Nectar. Memory foam is quite good at isolating motion. While the gel grid in the Purple has many positive attributes, motion isolation is not really one of them.
I believe Nectar is the better choice for couples.
See the motion isolation differences in the videos below.
See how well the Nectar deals with motion transfer. If you sleep with a partner, this may be the way to go. You shouldn’t feel them moving around at night.
The edge support is not fantastic on either mattress, but I think the Purple performs a bit better. It does collapse when I sit near the edge, but I feel like I am going to fall off the mattress. Likewise, when I am lying down the edge, I feel more secure than I do on the Nectar.
See the edge support differences in the photos below.
Marten is a staff writer for us. He has a much different body type than me: He is 6’7″ and weighs about 230 lb; I am 5’9″ and 160 lb. Here is what he thought about these two mattresses:
I thought the Nectar was a 6/10 in terms of firmness. I thought the Purple was a 6.5/10.
On the Nectar, I feel good support when I am on my back. I feel the foam pressing up into my lumbar area. On my side, I feel a little bit of pressure on my shoulders and my hips. That being said, there is good overall pressure relief on the Nectar. On my stomach, I bow in at the hips and feel my spine get out of alignment.
On the Purple, I feel good support on my back. On my side, there is very good pressure relief. I collapse that gel layer and it activates more for me than it did for Joe. I feel very nice pressure relief on my shoulders and my hips. Moving onto my stomach, I feel good support. I am not bowing in like I did on the Nectar. If you are a heavier back sleeper both mattresses should work for you.
If you’re a heavier side sleeper, you should get better pressure relief on the Purple. Also, if you are a heavier stomach sleeper, the Purple should give you better support when you are on your stomach.
While our firmness scores were different, Marten agreed that the Nectar is softer than the Purple. He did feel different when it came to sleeping on his side. The top layer of the Purple collapsed more for him, so he felt better pressure relief than I did.
Pick Purple If:
- You are a back or stomach sleeper. The Purple does a better job of supporting you when you are on your back and stomach. The gel grid collapses under your hips, but keeps the rest of your body flat and supported.
- You want a responsive sleeping surface. Unlike with the Nectar, it is easy to move around on the Purple. If you prefer sleeping “on” your mattress, this is the better choice.
- You want a firmer mattress. While it is not a very firm mattress, the Purple is the firmer of these two mattresses. If you like a bit of firmness and require more support, you should lean toward the Purple.
Pick Nectar If:
- You are a side sleeper. This is the softer of the two mattresses and, in my opinion, it may be better with pressure relief. You should feel less pressure on your shoulders and hips.
- You prefer a classic memory foam feel. If you like sinking into your mattress and prefer sleeping “in” your mattress, the Nectar is probably the better pick. You get that slow compression that comes with memory foam.
These are both popular mattresses for a reason. If you like a classic memory foam feel and are primarily a side sleeper, the Nectar is probably the better bet for you. If you want a more responsive mattress that should give you better support without sacrificing pressure relief, the Purple may be the choice for you. Please leave any specific comments or questions about the Nectar or the Purple in the comment section below.
Joe Auer is the editor of Mattress Clarity. He mainly focuses on mattress reviews and oversees the content across the site.
He likes things simple and take a straightforward, objective approach to his reviews. Joe has personally tested nearly 250 mattresses and always recommends people do their research before buying a new bed. He has been testing mattresses for over 5 years now, so he knows a thing or two when it comes to mattress selection. He has been cited as an authority in the industry by a number of large publications.
Joe has an undergraduate degree from Wake Forest University and an MBA from Columbia University.
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