Nectar vs. Purple Review – Which Mattress Should You Get?

nectar vs. purple 1 - SleepSharp

Which is better, Nectar vs Purple? If it’s time to get a new mattress, this is a question that you’ll have to answer first. Reason? Well, these two are the pick of the litter as reviews and feedback from current users depict.

The Nectar mattress is an all-foam 11-inch bed with a medium-density firmness. It starts at around $400 for a twin, and comes with a 365-day trial window and a lifetime warranty. 

On the other hand, the Purple mattress has a height of 9.25 inches and it’s categorized as a medium-firm bed too. This mattress starts at about $650 and features a 100-day trial period and a 10-year non-prorated warranty. 

In this Purple versus Nectar post, we’re going to compare these beds on the most important considerations, including their build and sleeper compatibility.

Key Similarities

  • Both of them are medium-firm
  • They feature poly foam bases
  • They are technically all-foam- although the Purple Grid behaves differently, it’s pretty much another form of foam
  • The two are relatively affordable if you were to compare them to other high-end mattress brands

Key Differences

  • Nectar mattress is 11” tall while the original Purple mattress is 9.25 inches
  • Nectar mostly uses memory foam. The critical layer of the Purple mattress is Purple’s proprietary Grid
  • Purple is made in the USA while Nectar is manufactured and assembled in China
  • Most people report that the Purple has a characteristic firm feel when they compare it to Nectar

Having understood the key similarities and differences between the Nectar and Purple mattress, let’s compare their construction side by side.

Nectar mattress construction

nectar mattress layers 2 - SleepSharp

The Nectar has a height of 11” and scores a 6 on our 1-10 soft-medium firmness level. We encourage you to check out our detailed Nectar mattress review for more info about it. For the time being, though, here is an overview of what goes into it; 

  • Cover– the Nectar has a fabric consisting of a blend of cotton and Tencel. Cotton- a natural fiber- is popular for its breathability and ability to absorb moisture as opposed to repelling it. Tencel also has a natural origin and comes from eucalyptus pulp. It’s popular for being super soft, lightweight, and almost 50% more breathable than cotton.

    This cover also has a one-inch 4 PCF gel-infused memory foam quilted into it. This padding is responsible for giving you the initial comfort feel of this mattress.
  • Comfort layer– the first layer from the top is a block of 3.5 PCF memory foam that Nectar dubs LushFoam. This foam also has gel-infusion technology and, therefore, boasts pretty much most of the attributes of the initial quilted comfort layer. It will contour to your body shape for pressure relief while the gel beads aid in dissipating heat.
  • Transition layer– as the name suggests, the transition layer is responsible for transferring your weight to the support core. It does this by maintaining enough sinkage to continue with the cradling feel of the comfort layer, but while buffering you from feeling the firm layer beneath. While most manufacturers use a poly foam transition layer, Nectar uses 1.75” high-density memory foam.
  • Base foundation layer– the base layer of this mattress is a 5.25” 2.2 PCF poly foam. This block is firmer and denser than the rest of the layers above it. It’s responsible for maintaining a flat and stable sleeping surface. It also supports your weight besides giving the mattress its overall structure.

Purple Mattress Construction

purple mattress layers - SleepSharp

Although Purple has several other great mattresses to its name (Purple 2, 3, and 4), the original Purple mattress is still very popular among all-foam lovers. This bed is very affordable, too, that is, if you compare it to its siblings. This is a 9.5-inch mattress with a medium-firm feel that our review team rates as a 6.5 on the soft-firm 10-point Likert scale. Here’s what goes into it:

  • Cover– the top and bottom panels of the Purple mattress cover are a little bit different. The top fabric consists of a blend of 67% polyester, 29% viscose, and 4% polyester-Lycra. This top panel is soft to the touch, and it’s also quite breathable. The bottom panel is made of 100% polyester and has a non-skid design. This helps a lot in preventing the mattress from skidding all over the foundation.

    There is one more thing: this cover is removable. Unfortunately, similar to most mattress covers, you can only spot-clean it as opposed to throwing it in the washing machine.
  • Comfort system– beneath the top panel, you’ll find the layer that makes all the difference between Purple and Nectar mattresses. This is a 2-inch layer of a unique foam called Purple Smart Grid. To make the Purple Grid, this manufacturer uses Hyper-Elastic Polymer material and a patented machine called Mattress Max. The highlight of this layer is its ability to spread the weight of the sleeper evenly while offering optimum support where the body needs it. Also, its large open-cell design makes this bed more breathable than most blocky foam layers.
  • Transition layer– the third layer of the Purple mattress from the top is a 3.5” 1.8 PCF poly foam. By using a high-density block of foam for this section, this bed provides enough support for the sleeper, all while maintaining the targeted medium-firm feel. This layer also ensures that you don’t dig uncomfortably into the firm support core below.
  • Base foundation layer– the last layer of this bed is a 4” tall high resiliency 2.0 PCF poly foam. This block is much denser than what you’ll find in the support system of most mattresses. This is a guarantee of a mattress that is going to hold up well for quite some time. 

Construction Comparison Table

purple mattress layers - SleepSharpnectar mattress layers 2 - SleepSharp
CoverTop panel: 67% Polyester, 29% Viscose, and 4% Polyester-Lycra 

Bottom Panel: 100% Polyester
Cotton and Tencel blend with 1-inch Gel memory foam quilting
Comfort System2-inch Purple Grid 3-inch 3.5 PCF memory foam
Transition Layer3.5” 1.8 PCF poly foam1.75-inchHigh density memory foam
Base Support4” tall High Resiliency 2.0 PCF poly foam5.25-inch 2.2 PCFPoly foam

A Word on Construction Differences

  • The Purple and Nectar mattresses are very popular among people looking for the best beds for lightweight and average weight individuals. However, their differences in construction imply that they won’t offer the same comfort and support to everyone in these weight categories.
  • Comfort in mattresses starts right from the cover. So, it makes sense to start this Nectar vs Purple mattress review and comparison there.
  • The cotton and Tencel materials that the Nectar uses is an incredible blend that we don’t see with most mattresses. This fabric is soft to the touch and awesomely breathable. 
  • Similar to Nectar, the Purple also has a notably soft cover only that it’s made of a blend of synthetic and semi-synthetic materials. This mattress’s cover consists of polyester, viscose, and Lycra.  Although polyester is notorious for trapping heat, the addition of viscose and Lycra (the material used in sportswear) adds a great deal of breathability and ability to wick away moisture.
  • Purple’s aspect of breathability again gets an incredible boost from the Smart Grid comfort layer. This layer has over 2500 squares that increase the dissipation of heat away from the sleeping surface.
  • There are two more ways that this Smart Grid helps in giving you a cooler bed. First of all, unlike memory foam that cradles and envelopes you to create pockets that may trap heat, the Hyper-Elastic Polymer used for the Smart Grid is resilient. This means that although it still has minimal cradling, you won’t sink deep in it to cause issues of trapped body heat. Secondly, this polymer does not retain heat like memory foam.
  • Another major difference between Purple mattress vs Nectar mattress is its comfort layer. The first 3 layers of the Nectar mattress are all memory foam. This makes it a suitable option for people who are looking for the classic memory foam feel plus the contouring and pressure relief attributes that come with it. However, these 3 layers also give it that quicksand-like feeling followed by the other feeling of being stuck on the mattress.
  • On the other hand, the Smart Grid layer of the Purple mattress, coupled with its poly foam transition layer, gives it a unique springiness that makes moving on the bed much easier than on memory foam. This layer also has more support that most stomach and side sleepers look for. 

Firmness and Feel Differences

  • These two mattresses feel medium-firm to us. The Nectar mattress scores a 6 while the Purple mattress feels like a 6.5. This slight variation in feel is as a result of the materials used for each bed and how they behave. It also has something to do with the difference in height.
  • The three memory foam layers of the Nectar mattress mean that they have a little bit more sinkage than the Smart Grid of the Purple mattress.
  • As you lie on the Nectar, the memory foam layers will start melting under you. Eventually, the mattress will contour to your body shape and hold you in a comfortable cradle. This is followed by excellent pressure relief, especially when sleeping on your side and back. You may need a little more support if you are a stomach sleeper, though.
  • The Smart Grid of the Purple mattress works quite like memory foam, only that it won’t cocoon you. The walls of its square grids will collapse and contour to your heaviest parts. However, this layer won’t bury you inside the mattress as memory foam does. This means that heat buildup won’t be an issue with this bed.
  • In addition, the walls of these square grids, coupled with poly foam transition layer, give it a fantastic level of springiness and support. These two make the Purple an incredible bed for pretty much all sleeping positions. The best thing, though, is that moving on the surface of the bed is almost effortless.

Motion Isolation Differences

In our separate reviews of these two mattresses, the Nectar managed a score of 5/5 on the issue of motion isolation. The Purple mattress got a 4.3, which is quite on the lower side for such a critical aspect. The relatively weak motion isolation in the Purple is as a result of its springiness. Unlike the blocky layers of the Nectar mattress, the Purple’s Smart Grid won’t be able to absorb all the movement energy from a restless partner. This means that some motion may make it to the other side of the bed, thereby causing minimal disturbance.

Edge Support Differences

Both of these mattresses are relatively poor performers when it comes to edge support, but this is an issue with most all-foam mattresses. All in all, you should sleep along the edge of any of these beds without the fear of falling.

The Nectar, however, tends to perform a little bit better here, especially when sitting on the edge of the bed. SleepSharp mattress review experts attribute this to the dense memory foam layers on top of the thick base foundation layer.

Firmness (out of 10)66.5
Edge support (out of 5)4.13.8
Motion isolation (out of 5)54.8

Who should pick Nectar?

  • Individuals who prefer the traditional memory foam feel- if you value the feeling of sinking slowly into the mattress and then being enveloped, the Nectar will offer you just that.
  • Side and back sleepers weighing 130 lbs to 400 lbs- although some stomach sleepers who prefer a soft mattress might still use it, the Nectar works best for people who mainly sleep on their side and back.
  • Anyone looking for excellent pressure relief- the cradling and contour of this mattress make it one of the best options for people struggling with back pain and stressed joints.

Who should pick Purple?

  • Lightweight and average weight sleepers (230 lbs or less) – considering the size of the Smart Grid, individuals heavier than this may sink way too much into the mattress, which might be uncomfortable. The best part, though, is that the Purple tends to support all sleeping positions within this weight range.
  • People who like memory foam but not the feeling of being stuck in the mattress– the Purple has an amazing resilience and springiness that makes moving on the surface, turning, and switching positions very easy.
  • Hot sleepers– the Smart Grid of this mattress plus the cover make the Purple much more breathable than most all-foam memory foam beds, including the Nectar.

Our Verdict – Purple or Nectar?

When deciding which mattress to buy between Nectar and Purple, we believe it will boil down to your profile and personal preferences. If you are looking for nothing short of the classic memory foam feeling, you need to try out the Nectar. On the other hand, if you’d like a springy mattress but don’t want to go with an innerspring, the Purple awaits you. The latter is worth checking out, too, if you are a notorious hot sleeper.

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