updated September 2021

Nolah vs. Purple Mattress Comparison

Nolah vs. Purple Mattress Comparison

Choosing between the Nolah and Purple mattresses? This side-by-side comparison covers key differences and our recommendations.

Decision fatigue while new mattress shopping is a real thing. If you’re torn between the Nolah and Purple mattresses, we want to make your life a little easier with this mattress comparison. 

Nolah and Purple are both recognizable bed-in-a-box mattress companies with loyal customer bases, so you can rest assured that these beds are tested and true. To give you a better idea of which mattress best meets your needs, we’ve put the performance scores, pricing, dimensions, and highlights for the Purple mattress and Nolah mattress side by side in this comparison.


Nolah vs. Purple Quick Comparison

Customer Rating
MA Score
Summary
Firmness
Type
Trial Period
Warranty
Customer Rating
MA Score

8.9/10

Summary

Temperature neutral AirFoam mattress known for offering great pressure relief

Firmness

Medium firm: 5 - 6 /10

Type

All-foam mattress

Trial Period

120 days

Warranty

Lifetime warranty

Customer Rating
MA Score

8.4/10

Summary

Proven pressure relief for people with back pain; good for back and side sleepers

Firmness

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Type

Hybrid: hyper-elastic polymer and foam

Trial Period

100 days

Warranty

10-year limited warranty

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purple mattress update

Nolah

Purple

Customer Rating

MA Score

8.9/10

8.4/10

Summary

Temperature neutral AirFoam mattress known for offering great pressure relief

Proven pressure relief for people with back pain; good for back and side sleepers

Firmness

Medium firm: 5 - 6 /10

Medium-firm: 6.5/10

Type

All-foam mattress

Hybrid: hyper-elastic polymer and foam

Trial Period

120 days

100 days

Warranty

Lifetime warranty

10-year limited warranty

Key Similarities

  • Firmness Level: The Nolah and Purple mattresses both have a medium-firm feel that ranges from 5–6.5/10 on the firmness scale. Purple is slightly firmer, but still falls in the medium-firm range.
  • Cost: The pricing for these two mattresses is pretty close. They don’t differ by more than a couple hundred dollars, and the difference is significantly smaller for twin-full size mattresses.
  • Spinal Alignment: We were impressed with how well both of these mattresses promote spinal alignment. In fact, both beds earned a near perfect score during our review process.

Key Differences

  • Warranty: Nolah gives their mattress customers a tough-to-beat lifetime warranty against manufacturer defects, while Purple warrants their original mattress for 10 years.
  • Materials: Purple and Nolah are made with distinctly unique materials, particularly for their comfort layers. Purple features a flexible hyper-elastic polymer grid, while Nolah showcases their patent-pending AirFoam.
  • Responsiveness: We found the Nolah mattress to be the more responsive of the two. It’s not as bouncy as an innerspring or hybrid mattress, but it adapts to your movements more quickly than the Purple.
  • Pressure Relief: The hyper-elastic polymer grid on top of the Purple mattress provides better pressure relief than the foam layers that make up the Nolah mattress.
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Nolah Mattress Review Highlights

  • AirFoam: The spotlight feature of the Nolah Original mattress is AirFoam. Nolah designed this foam to have the responsive, temperature neutral feel of latex and the contouring support of memory foam
  • Motion Isolation: The natural buoyancy of AirFoam keeps movement isolated at its source. Our testers hardly felt any disruptions when a second person got on and off the mattress, which is why we gave it close to a perfect score in this category.
  • Pressure Relief: Nolah is made with foams that have countless tiny air pockets that absorb pressure. You should notice less back pain while sleeping on the Nolah, and we even named it one of the best mattresses for side sleepers.
  • Responsiveness: The foam layers in the Nolah mattress do an excellent job of keeping up with your changes in position. If you are a combo sleeper, a responsive mattress like the Nolah is a must-have for a comfortable night sleep.
  • Spine Alignment: The Nolah mattress also earned a high score for spine alignment, which indicates how well a mattress keeps your spine in a neutral position. Regardless of your sleeping position, a good posture while sleeping translates into less back pain.
purple mattress

Purple Mattress Review Highlights

  • Hyper Elastic Polymer: The Purple mattress was launched to fame by the innovative Purple Grid top layer made from a stretchy, supportive material called hyper-elastic polymer Smart Grid that easily supports and cushions your body.
  • Pressure Relief: The Purple Grid (aka Smart Grid) cushions your pressure points by collapsing under high pressure zones and supporting low pressure zones. 
  • Spinal Alignment: The waffle-like design of the Purple Grid evenly distributes your body weight, which keeps your spine in a neutral position. Good sleeping posture is imperative for minimizing back and neck pain.
  • Cooling: Hyper elastic polymer has a cooling effect similar to gel. It’s not cool-on-contact, but it absorbs body heat, which creates a comfortable sleeping temperature. Also, the Purple Grid has thousands of channels that improve airflow
  • Durability: The original Purple mattress, and especially the Purple Hybrid mattress, have a long lifespan. Hyper elastic polymer produced decades ago still hasn’t shown signs of degrading. Plus, the base of the mattress is two layers of high density foam.

Nolah Offers a Bit More Thickness

Nolah Purple
Thickness 10” 9.25”
Twin 38” x 75” 38” x 75”
Twin XL 38” x 80” 38” x 80”
Full 54” x 75” 54” x 76”
Queen 60” x 80” 60” x 80”
King 76” x 80” 76” x 80”
California King 72” x 84” 72” x 84”

Learn more about mattress sizes.


Purples Tend To Be Slightly Pricier

Casper and Purple’s prices are pretty similar, though Casper gets slightly more affordable as the mattress size goes up. Click on the check price button below to see what kinds of deals Casper and Purple might be offering.

Nolah Purple
Twin $649 $599
Twin XL $799 $799
Full $899 $999
Queen $1,049 $1,149
King $1,149 $1,449
California King $1,149 $1,449

Compare Construction

Mattress construction has a big impact on how it feels, which is why we look at the individual mattress layers. The Nolah is an all-foam mattress that’s especially responsive and motion isolating, while the Purple is a hybrid mattress that provides pressure relief and prevents back pain.

Inside the Nolah Mattress

nolah 10 inside
  1. Mattress Cover: A white Tencel cover encases the Nolah mattress. Tencel is a fabric made from sustainably sourced raw wood pulp. It’s used for its softness, durability, and flexibility. Tencel fabric is also naturally breathable and moisture-wicking. 
  2. Comfort Layer: The Nolah mattress has a top layer of Nolah AirFoam that is made without heat-trapping viscoelastic chemicals. This layer is considerably more responsive than traditional memory foam, but it’s not quite as adaptive as latex.
  3. Transition Layer: This layer of high-resilience foam eases your body into the firmer layer of base foam. It also improves the responsiveness of the mattress—when pressure is removed from the transition foam, it instantly expands back to its original shape.
  4. Support Layer: A layer of high-density foam prevents you from sinking too far into the mattress surface. This base foam improves the durability of the mattress and helps it to keep its shape over years of regular use.

Inside the Purple Mattress

inside purple mattress
  1. Mattress Cover: The Purple mattress has a special SoftFlex cover made of breathable polyester, viscose, and lycra. The cover is designed to stretch with your body and the Purple Grid, so you experience as much contouring as possible.
  2. Comfort Layer: The top layer is a hyper elastic polymer Purple Grid. There are over 1,000 hollow channels in the grid that adapt to your body weight and sleeping position. This layer is also where the Purple mattress gets its reputation for pressure relief.
  3. Edge Support Layer: A newer addition to the Purple mattress is a frame of supportive polyfoam that improves edge support.
  4. Transition Layer: Similar to the edge support layer, the transition layer is made with medium-soft polyfoam that acts as a barrier between the Purple Grid and the firmer base layer. It also isolates motion and adds a little more cushion around pressure points.
  5. Base Layer: The foundation of the Purple mattress is a thick layer of high-density polyfoam. It’s meant to support the weight of the rest of the mattress, plus any sleepers. It also prevents sagging and improves the lifespan of your mattress.

Compare Testing Scores

We brought both of these mattresses into our sleep lab for a thorough review process, and gave them each 14 functionality scores. You can compare how they performed below.

 

Nolah Purple
Shipping 10 7
Trial Period 10 9
Return Policy 10 10
Warranty 10 9
Set-Up Test 9 6
Motion Transfer Test 9 7.5
Edge Support Test 8.5 8.5
Pressure Relief Test 7.25 8.5
Spinal Alignment Test 9.5 9.5
Responsiveness Test 9.25 7
Cooling Evaluation 8 8
Durability Evaluation 7 9
Customer Service Score 9 9
Social Impact Score 6 4
TOTAL SCORE 8.9/10 8.4/10

Motion Transfer

Both of these beds earned above-average scores for motion transfer, but Nolah outperformed Purple by 1.5 points. This isn’t surprising since all-foam beds tend to do a great job isolating motion. If you sleep with a partner or pet, and one of you is easily disturbed by movement, Nolah is the better choice. 

Sleeping Position

The Purple mattress provides better pressure relief, so it’s the best choice for side sleepers. Nolah is still pretty soft, so it can also work for side sleepers who split time between their sides and back.

Back sleepers can find comfort on either bed. The Nolah is a bit softer, so back sleepers who opt for this mattress should desire a softer feeling mattress or have a lightweight or average body type. 

Neither mattress is ideal for stomach sleepers. The Nolah may be too soft to sustain spine alignment for stomach sleepers, and some customers have commented that the channels in the Purple Grid can be uncomfortable against their face and chest.

Nolah is decidedly better for combo sleepers, due in part to the responsive AirFoam. Purple earned an average score for responsiveness. We didn’t feel stuck in the Smart Grid, but it didn’t adapt to our movements as quickly as the AirFoam.

Durability

Most mattresses are designed to last up to 10 years. They aren’t exactly a line item on the average consumer’s budget, so you want them to last a decade at the very least. Foam is the least durable mattress material, while innersprings last the longest.

In this comparison, Purple is the more durable mattress. You’ll pay $100–$300 more for a larger Purple mattress size, but hyper-elastic polymer has been shown not to deteriorate over multiple decades. It will likely last longer than Nolah, which is important if you plan to keep a mattress for 10+ years.

Also consider your mattress warranty when you think about durability. Mattress warranties are written to protect customers from defects that can develop over time. Nolah is covered by a prorated lifetime warranty. In contrast, Purple is covered by a 10-year warranty.


So, Mattress Which Is Better for You?

Overall, we favor the Purple mattress for side sleepers, people with back pain, and those who don’t mind taking a risk on a unique mattress. The Nolah mattress is better for couples, combo sleepers, and budget shoppers. Either mattress works for back sleepers, but neither is ideal for stomach sleepers.

If you still can’t choose between the Nolah or Purple mattresses, we recommend listing your top two or three mattress must-haves, and choosing the bed that best aligns with those needs. Alternatively, consider other mattress models. Purple has a hybrid mattress that sleeps especially cool, and the 12″ Nolah Signature features 75% more AirFoam and a thicker core base. Also note that Nolah doesn’t ship to Alaska or Hawaii.

More Nolah and Purple Comparisons

Cariloha

Still Deciding?

If you still need to narrow down your options and eliminate some options, check out our mattress comparison tool.