On Comet! On Cupid! On Donner and … Purple?

In which Ed waxes lyrical about a mattress

If you’re in the United States of America and you’re looking for a new mattress, I got you. www.onpurple.com is the only place you need to be looking. You’ll thank me for the whimsical and very amusing videos that they use to illustrate their products, but I implore you to buy, experience, and then you can thank me again when you’ve had the best sleep of your life.

The only drawback is that going home to spend time with family, staying in less-than-five-star hotels, and sleeping on the train is just going to make you wish you were back at home in your own bed. Sorry!

We decided very early on that we wanted a big bed. What I mean by that, is that I decided three years before meeting AJ that I wanted a big bed. Having shared with a partner before in a regular double, as well as having spent a lot of time on my own, I was aware of two things:

  1. I need my own space in bed
  2. I really need my own space in bed

Thankfully, two other things were now true:

  1. AJ does too
  2. American rooms are freakin’ huge

We bought a King-sized bed frame from the excellent Hemnes collection at IKEA and decided that, as we both appreciate the value of a good sleep, we needed to invest in a good mattress. I had had a good experience with a pocket-sprung + memory foam hybrid in the past, but the feeling was ‘in for a penny, in for a pound’ (or dollar in this case), and that we should go all-out. This would be something we’d be spending a large percentage of our lives on, as well as something which would – hopefully – last for years, making it a solid investment.

While Tempur-Pedic is the Daddy of Foam when it comes to mattresses, their position as the de facto leader in this space makes their product eye-gougingly expensive. Almost $4,000 at the time we were looking made it an instant ‘Hell No’.
There are also some major drawbacks with Tempur mattresses – notably the heat issue. Foam traps air and the bed is naturally on the warm side. I get hot at night and even with the barbaric North-Eastern winters that I knew would inevitably be coming, I knew that I needed a cooler bed.

Casper is the big name around town over here in non-mainstream mattresses. In fact, they’re almost so non-mainstream that they’re mainstream. A disruptive mattress manufacturer that advertises heavily all over the New York Subway. However, their products do look really good.

AJ brought up Purple. I’d never heard of them, but one watch of their brilliant Goldilocks-inspired mattress advert and I was hooked. I’ll let you watch the video for yourselves, but Purple’s approach is different from the others. Rather than layering different foam or foam-like materials, Purple uses a proprietary lattice-work of a sort of rubber / jelly material.

We had to wait several weeks for the mattress to arrive but, once we did, we were not disappointed. I arrived home to find a giant purple tube just inside the apartment. AJ had managed to drag it into the elevator and get it into the house which was a herculean effort, as I discovered when I tried to get it onto the bed. The thing is heavy.

After freeing it from the purple tube, you lift it into position on the bed and then use the included tool to slice open the plastic wrapping. At that stage, the mattress takes care of itself, unfurling itself before your very eyes. All that’s left is to clear out the plastic from underneath and you’re good to go.

The mattress itself is incredibly soft at first touch. The first time I lay on it, I wondered if we’d made a $1300 mistake. Generally speaking I prefer a firmer mattress; I wasn’t sure what I was expecting but for the first few seconds I thought we’d gone in the wrong direction.

Then the reality of Purple dawned on me, and I stopped wondering.

The softness comes from the purple lattice beneath you, but it’s not a lack of support that you’re feeling, it’s simply the material shifting underneath you as your body settles. Lying on Purple is like lying on a cloud. Your limbs become weightless, and you are instantly aware that no mattress – short of a multi-thousand dollar equivalent – is going to feel remotely as comfortable.

After the first night, we were smitten. Unfortunately I was still using one of AJ’s old pillows, so whilst my body was enjoying feeling like a ball of cotton wool, my head and neck were stuck firmly in the Old World. This was resolved a few weeks later with our purchase of two Purple Pillows. AJ hasn’t quite warmed to hers, but I love mine to bits. It’s much smaller and lower than regular pillows, and is made entirely of the purple material, encased in a simple white cotton pillowcase. I’m a side/front sleeper though, and this low profile is absolutely perfect. It’s almost like a slightly raised extension of the mattress, so now my entire body is one with the insane comfiness.

If you’re in the market for a new mattress and / or pillow, I urge you to consider Purple.

Purple arrives as a gigantic (and ridiculously heavy) tube
Unfurled on the bed


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