What you get with Purple
Purple began its mattress sales in 2016, but the cushioning formula used in making its top layer is several decades old. Sold directly to consumers and exclusively online, Purple is constructed with 15 cushioning technology patents.
The base layer is 4” of supportive foam, the middle layer is 3.5” of comfort foam, and the top layer is 2” of patented Hyper-Elastic Polymer, which is a stretchy polymer grid.
These key characteristics contribute to the popularity of Purple:
- Temperature: The open grid construction of the top layer makes Purple much cooler than most foam mattresses.
- Motion transfer: While it’s bouncier than most foam mattresses, motion transfer is minimal.
- Comfort: This mattress is effective at minimizing pressure points.
- Hypoallergenic: The 100% food-grade materials used to make Purple are hypoallergenic and dust mite resistant.
In contrast, these are some potential weaknesses to note about Purple:
- Size: Because Purple is slightly smaller than standard mattresses, it is not ideal for tall people.
- Weight: The materials used in making the bed are heavy. The Queen size, for example, weighs 110 pounds.
- Firmness: While average and large-size sleepers find the mattress comfortable, Purple is described as too firm by many small-sized consumers (130 pounds or less).
- Edge support: This mattress has poor edge support. Some consumers report “bottoming out” or falling off the bed while sitting on the edge.
Price (Queen): $999
Sleep trial: 100 nights
Warranty: 10-year; non-prorated
Shipping: Free shipping
Manufactured in: USA
Headquartered in Alpine, Utah, Purple was founded by Tony and Terry Pearce. The brothers first formed a partnership in 1989 to make high-tech carbon fiber products after 30+ years designing and manufacturing aerospace materials for other companies.
In the early 1990’s, they invented Floam, the world’s lightest-weight cushioning fluid. A few years later, they invented Hyper-Elastic Polymer, a material used to cushion products such as medical beds, wheelchairs, and shoe insoles. Though it is soft, Hyper-Elastic Polymer is strong and can be molded to relax under pressure points and redistribute the pressure to other areas.
By 2014, the Pearce brothers invented a patent-pending machine that could mold Hyper-Elastic Polymer into pieces large enough to cover a mattress at production rates that made the end product affordable. It is this machine that allowed Purple to begin selling 4 sizes of mattresses in 2016.
The Purple mattress company is not accredited yet by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) because the data required for accreditation is not yet available. The C+ rating the BBB has assigned Purple is based on a single neutral customer review.
The nearly 11,000 reviews posted on the Purple website indicate a cumulative 4.5 star rating. While the mattress is not sold on Amazon, 78% of consumers who posted a review there gave the mattress a rating of 5-stars or 4-stars. The cumulative rating from 441 reviews is 4.2. Amazon does note that the mattress has a higher than average return rate.
Purple is recognized for being 100% American-made as well as for being green. They use all recycled, food-grade materials in manufacturing, their packaging is 100% recyclable, and they use no toxic chemicals in the manufacturing process.
Here are the most frequently cited pros and cons as noted in reviews by Purple customers:
- Back pain relief
- No pressure points
- Temperature (does not sleep “hot”)
- Motion isolation
- 100-day sleep trial
- Easy setup
- 100% food-grade materials (hypoallergenic; dust mite resistant)
- Returns are donated to local charities
- Fast refund after return
- Smaller than standard mattresses
- Little edge support
- Traditional sheets do not fit well
- Only 4 sizes
- Too firm for small sleepers (130 pounds or less)
- Returns are difficult if bought somewhere other than Purple online
A look at the Purple mattress
The American-made Purple mattress is available in Twin XL, Queen, King, and California King, and is comprised of 3 layers that give sleepers core strength, pressure relief, cooling, and bounce. The layers – all breathable so they will not absorb excess heat – are:
- Hyper-Elastic Polymer: This 2” top layer is a patented gel-like material molded in a grid pattern.
- Comfort foam: The next 3.25” layer provides support and pressure relief, and adapts to all body shapes and sizes.
- Support layer: The final 4” layer gives the mattress its strength and structure.
Other features include:
- Food grade materials: All layers are made with non-toxic, 100% FDA-certified, food-grade materials that make the mattress hypoallergenic, anti-microbial, and dust mite resistant.
- Frame compatibility: Purple makes and sells its own platform base; however, the mattress works just as well with a more traditional adjustable bed frame, a slatted base, a box foundation, or the floor.
- Cover: The Purple mattress cover, made from viscose, polyester, and polyester-lycra, is patent-pending and is designed to maximize the feel and support of the Hyper-Elastic Polymer™ in the top layer.
- Certification: All layers in Purple are CertiPUR-US®-certified.
Purple has several videos online that illustrate how the mattress materials and features work in each sleeping position to relieve pressure points.
Purple costs and guarantees
Purple also offers monthly payment plans on its mattresses.
Purple offers customers a 100-night sleep trial when the mattress is purchased direct online . If a customer chooses to return their mattress, they can coordinate a pickup by contacting customer support on the Purple website.
Because the mattress cannot be returned in the original packaging, and because its weight makes it costly to ship back, Purple will arrange for a local donation center to come and pick it up.
If bought elsewhere, such as through Amazon, the trial period is not always as lengthy, and there are a large number of complaints about Amazon’s return policy for the mattress. For this reason, we recommend that consumers buy direct rather than through Amazon or other third-party retailers.
Purple mattresses are shipped for free within the 48 contiguous Unites States. Shipping is available for Hawaii, Alaska, and Canada but shipping costs will apply (they are calculated at checkout). Shipping times vary by location but mattresses typically arrive within 10-12 days of the order.
Purple compresses and ships its mattresses in a vinyl tube equipped with small handles that make it easier to carry and move from room to room before set up. The tube dimensions are:
- Twin XL: 38” long x 15.5” in diameter
- Queen: 60” long x 15.5” in diameter
- King: 76” long x 15.5” in diameter
- California King: 72” long x 15.5” in diameter
Once your mattress arrives, it can be set up in a few steps:
- Take the vinyl tube into the room where you will be using it
- Place it on your base
- Remove the mattress from the tube
- Purple provides a special tool in the outer packaging that looks like a small letter opener
- This tool will cut the plastic tube open without damaging the mattress
- Unroll the mattress and remove the layers of purple fabric surrounding it as well as the packaging
- As the mattress unrolls it will be fully expanded and ready to use
You can watch the video illustrating the setup steps below.
Purple offers a 10-year, non-prorated warranty on each of their mattresses. The warranty does have more exceptions than other foam mattress warranties including:
- On Queen and King sizes, the warranty applies only if the frame that is used has 5 or more legs, including center support
- The warranty is voided is the mattress is stored in a storage facility even for a brief period of time
- The warranty is also voided if the mattress has stains, tears, burns, or signs of jumping on the bed
- The cover is included in the warranty only for the first 2 years
How Purple performs
The Purple has limited motion transfer. Because the polymer grid that forms the top layer gives only under specific pressure, it isolates motion. This means sleepers do not feel movement from someone else in the bed who may be changing position or getting up.
Purple mattresses do not perform well on the edges. There is significant sinkage on the edges and the mattress does not support sleeping or sitting along the edges at all.
Since Purple began selling and shipping its mattresses in 2016, the longevity is not yet proven. The base layer foam is denser than the foam used in other mattresses of this type which is likely to increase the lifespan and decrease loss of support. Based on early reviews and the fact that each mattress comes with a 10-year warranty, it should wear well over 8 – 10 years of use.
On a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the most firm, the Purple mattress is a 6 (there are no firmness options available), meaning it is medium to medium-firm. A significant number of customers have complained that the mattress can feel very firm for anyone who weighs 130 pounds or less.
The grid design of the top layer and the patented materials that are used in it promote airflow and make the Purple sleep cooler than memory foam or latex. Only 5% of customers report sleeping warm or hot on the Purple.
There may be a faint smell of “new” when the Purple mattress is first unpackaged, but it dissipates within a few hours. The strong chemical smell that is typical with foam mattresses is absent because the top polymer layer and the 2 foam layers are all made from non-toxic, food grade, plant-based materials.
The Purple mattress has bounce but it also provides support. It does not sink in during movement meaning couples will not “fight” the mattress during sex.
How to take care of your Purple mattress
The Purple mattress cover does zip off, but it should not be machine washed and dried since the fabric can shrink. Instead, spot clean it with a mild detergent or upholstery cleaner, and use a mattress protector that has some stretch.
The stretchier your sheets and mattress protector are, the more you will maximize the benefits and lifespan of Purple. When sheets or protectors are too tight, or have no stretch, they can act as a barrier between you and the polymer grid layer, preventing optimal pressure relief.
You should not flip the Purple since the benefits of the top layer will be lost. While rotating it is not required, the company recommends it every 6 months.
Connect with Purple
For more information about the mattress and the company, connect with Purple through these channels: