Purple Vs Tuft & Needle – Which Should You Choose?

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Finding the right bed in a box mattress isn’t easy. It is even more difficult you consider all the fantastic online mattresses available right now.

The Purple and Tuft & Needle are two such mattresses. They both have a lot of offer and could be a great match for many types of people. So, how do you choose between them?

I have the information you need to find the right mattress for you. Which will it be: the Purple or the Tuft & Needle? Read on for my full comparison.


Key Similarities

  • These are both very popular mattresses.
  • Both companies have great customer service terms.
  • They are similar in terms of firmness.
  • Both mattresses have nice bounce, making it easy to move around.

Get The Best Available Deal On Purple

Key Differences

  • The Purple costs more than the Tuft & Needle.
  • The mattresses incorporate very different materials in their construction.
  • The Purple has a unique, firm and pressure relieving gel feel, and the Tuft & Needle has a balanced foam feel.

Get The Best Deal On Tuft & Needle

On online mattresses is opened to show its construction.

Purple Construction

  • The Purple 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.

Read the full Purple mattress review

The inside of a bed in a box mattress.

Tuft & Needle Construction

  • The Tuft & Needle is 10” tall.
  • The cover is thin and soft.
  • The first layer is 3” of an Adaptive foam.
  • 7” of standard base polyfoam makes up the base.

Check out the full Tuft & Needle mattress review

Construction Differences/Notes

  • Tuft & Needle’s Adaptive Foam combines memory foam and latex qualities. It allows you to sink in, but it is also responsive.
  • The hyper-elastic gel polymer is designed to stay flat and firm until you apply enough pressure. Once that happens, the gel grid will collapse. So, the mattress will collapse under the heavier parts of your body, but stay flat and supportive everywhere else.
  • These designs mean that the Purple has a unique, squishy feel, while the Tuft & Needle has a balanced foam feel.
  • The Purple should be more breathable than the Tuft & Needle. The gel grid promotes fantastic airflow.
  • The Purple should also be more durable than the Tuft & Needle. The hyper-elastic gel polymer is a very durable material, so it should stand up to more wear and tear than the Tuft & Needle.

RELATED: What Is The Best Mattress?

Firmness/Feel Differences

In terms of firmness, the Purple feels like a 7/10, and the Tuft & Needle feels like a 6.5/10. I will note that the Purple will feel different depending on your weight. You need to apply a certain amount of pressure before you activate the gel grid. Lighter people might not activate the gel grid, so the mattress could feel firmer. Heavier people, on the other hand, will activate the gel grid, so the mattress will feel softer to them.

Back sleeping on the Purple, I feel the perfect amount of support. My hips sink into the gel grid, but the rest of the mattress stays flat and supportive. When I lie on my side, I feel some decent comfort.

However, I think I might be too light to really get the best pressure relief. I am not heavy enough to fully activate the gel grid. When I move to my stomach, the mattress doesn’t collapse at all, and I feel very well supported.

When I lie on my back, the Tuft & Needle is a good match. My hips sink in but not too far. I will say that I felt better back sleeping on the Purple. Side sleeping, I feel fantastic on the Tuft & Needle. The Adaptive Foam relieves pressure very well for someone of my size. I think light- and medium-weight side sleepers should prefer the Tuft & Needle.

However, when I move to my stomach, the mattress is too soft for me. My hips bow in somewhat, and I don’t feel properly aligned.

The Purple has a unique firm, yet squishy feel. It is both supportive and pressure relieving at the same time. It also has some nice bounce, so it should be easy to move around on the mattress. The Tuft & Needle, on the other hand, has a balanced foam feel. You sink into the mattress but not too far. The mattress also has a good amount of bounce, so you shouldn’t feel stuck.

See more information about Purple’s gel grid in the video below.


Watch what I thought of Tuft & Needle’s balanced foam feel.


Motion Transfer Differences

If you sleep with a partner, you want to know how your mattress will deal with motion transfer. Will you sleep soundly, or will your partner’s movements disturb you while you sleep?

I placed a glass of water on both mattresses and pushed into the surrounding area. I saw less disturbance on the Tuft & Needle. Also, I lay down on both mattresses and asked Marten to move around on the other side. I felt less of his movement on the Tuft & Needle.

The Tuft & Needles handles motion transfer better than the Purple.

See how the Purple performs in the video below.


Now, compare this to the Tuft & Needle


Edge Support Differences

If you are looking for a mattress for couples, you should also think about how much of the mattress surface you can really utilize. How secure will you be sitting or sleeping near the edge of the mattress?

Between these two mattresses, the Purple features better edge support. I feel more comfortable sitting near the edge and, when I lie down near the edge, I feel less like I am going to roll off the mattress.

You can see the edge support differences in the photos below.

A man sits on the edge of a mattress.

A man sits down on his mattress.

Marten’s Take

Marten is a staff writer for us. He has a much different body type than me. He is 6’7″ and weighs about 230 lbs (I am 5’9″ and 160 lbs.). Here is what he thought about these mattresses:

I said the Tuft & Needle was a 6.5/10, and the Purple was also a 6.5/10. The Purple felt a little softer to me than it did to Joe. This is because I am a heavier person. I am activating the top gel layer more than Joe did.

When I am on my back on the Tuft & Needle, I am not getting enough support. My hips are sinking in too far. When I move to my side, I feel pretty good pressure relief overall. I am feeling some nice pressure relief on my shoulder and hips. On my stomach, I am not getting enough support. I am bowing in at the hips and getting out of alignment.

Over on the Purple, I feel great support on my back. My hips are sinking in just the right amount. On my side, I feel great pressure relief. The gel collapses under my shoulders and hips, so I feel almost no pressure there.
On my stomach, I’m feeling very good overall support.

If you are a heavier back sleeper, I would lean toward the Purple. If you are a heavier side sleeper, both mattresses could work for you. It depends on what feel you prefer. Finally, if you are a heavier stomach sleeper, I would go with the Purple.

Being that Marten is a heavier person, he had a different experience sleeping on the Purple. Especially when he was on his side, his weight activated the gel layer, so he felt better pressure relief than I did. As always, it is important to consider your size and weight when deciding on a mattress.

Pick Purple If:

  • You are a heavier side sleeper. If you are heavy enough, the Purple should be a great match when you are on your side. The gel grid is designed to stay firm and supportive until you apply enough pressure. If you are a larger person, you should activate the gel grid and feel little pressure on your shoulders and hips.
  • You are a back or stomach sleeper. The Purple is definitely the more supportive mattress. If you sleep on your back or stomach, you shouldn’t sink too far into the mattress. Back sleepers should feel the mattress collapse under their hips and buttocks, but the rest of the mattress will remain supportive.
  • You are looking for a long-term investment. The Purple contains some very high-quality components. Because of this, the mattress should be durable and last for quite a while. The mattress will cost you more, but it should be a longer-lasting mattress.
  • You are a hot sleeper. If you overheat while you sleep, it might be worth considering the Purple mattress. The gel grid allows for some very nice airflow. The mattress should be more temperature neutral and sleep cooler than the Tuft & Needle.

RELATED: Most Comfortable Mattress

Pick Tuft & Needle If:

  • You are a light- or medium-weight side sleeper. If you sleep on your side and you aren’t very heavy, the Tuft & Needle be the right choice. It should offer better pressure relief for people of lesser weights. Lighter-weight people might not activate the Purple’s gel layer.
  • You prefer a balanced foam feel. If you like the feel of a foam mattress, but you don’t want to get stuck, the Tuft & Needle should work for you. It lets you sink in a bit, but the Adaptive Foam is quite responsive. It should be easy to move around on the mattress.
  • You want a more affordable mattress. Between the two mattresses, the Tuft & Needle costs less. If you want to save around $400 dollars, this mattress could be the way to go.


If you keep all this in mind, it shouldn’t be difficult to choose between these two mattresses. Back and stomach sleepers, as well as heavier side sleepers, should prefer the Purple mattress. Lighter side sleepers who like a balanced foam feel should like the Tuft & Needle. Please leave any specific comments or questions about the Purple or the Tuft & Needle in the comment section below.

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Gravatar for Joe Auer

Joe Auer

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.