Purple vs Luxi
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I was given a Luxi and Purple mattress free to review. I also have an affiliate relationship with both of these companies.
If you are in the market for a high-end mattress with some technology, you should look at Luxi and Purple. I’ve slept on and carefully investigated both of these mattresses. The following are my findings. I was given both a Luxi and a Purple for free to review.
Both are low priced when compared to premium foam mattresses found in traditional mattress stores. After taking the day-in and day-out manufacturer discounts and Sleep Sherpa coupons into account, Luxi is priced at $849, compared to $999 for the Purple queen. The kings are even further apart at $1,299 for Purple and $999 for the Luxi. That is a $300 difference for the kings. Both are in the high-end/luxury segment of the market, and both have the most innovative mattress technologies that I have reviewed, to date.
Luxi Sleep is headed up by a dynamic father daughter team. David, the designer of Luxi, is an engineer with more than 30 years experience creating mattresses, not just for consumers but also for people with special needs who require custom bedding for comfort due to medical conditions. This background gave him valuable experience for creating a consumer mattress for people who want to avoid pressure on their hips, shoulders, and other joints while sleeping. In late 2015 David’s daughter Shannon, joined the company, bringing her background in technology and consumer experience, and they introduced Luxi together in fall 2015.
Their product is the only adjustable mattress in this segment allowing users to easily make in-home changes in the way it feels, thanks to its patent-pending Support Balancing Technology and Luxi’s unique patent-pending mattress construction.
Purple launched in early 2016 with the release of a well-produced video and intriguing comfort layer technology. Their gel-grid technology actually goes back 15 years, but they just recently introduced it into the online mattress segment. Before embarking in the mattress business, three years ago, Tony and Terry, the co-creators of Purple, were also involved in the business of invention. Tony had 13 years of experience in advanced aerospace materials, and Terry had 20 years experience in manufacturing, design, and project management. Before starting Purple, they created high-tech carbon fiber sporting goods and wheelchairs and chair cushions.
So, both mattresses have been created by real techies with formal engineering and design backgrounds, both are dedicated principals in their family businesses. They are all lifelong associates, so to speak, and fully invested, heart and soul. And that’s a good thing.
Here’s the short answer:
For consumers who like the feel of a of a quality memory foam mattress, or the feel of a Latex bed, and for those who sleep with a partner with a different preference of firmness, the Luxi is the best choice.
For those who like a medium-firm, slightly springy mattress (that is not a memory foam mattress), with unique surface compliance and pressure redistribution ability, then Purple is a good choice.
Luxi is a luxury performance mattress that uses a new technology to alleviate pressure points. This patent-pending technology is called the Support Balancing Technology, or SBT. Support Balancing Technology is a fabricated enhanced stability viscos foam layer that offers cushioning and support simultaneously for the higher interface pressure body regions, such as hips, shoulders, etc., so that the body is in alignment during sleep. In particular this layer of pedestal-shaped foam offers support, softness control, airflow and minimal motion transfer like no other foam on the market. While it is not a memory foam layer in the usual consumer sense, it is derived from that chemistry and presents as a faster responding, more stable and durable viscos elastic foam.
Purple is a no-pressure mattress that replaces memory foam with a grid-like polymer gel layer that is an hyper elastic polymer material designed to offer pressure point relief. This layer has a highly “point elastic” behavior, similar to that produced by Luxi’s SBT system. But Purple’s gel-grid is more radically spot pressure reliving. The initial load is firmer, the collapse is swifter and the restoring force is higher as the gel is much less compressible that any foam. This phenomenon is referred to by Purple as “releasing” under pressure hot spots. The same concept as the collapse of the SBT pedestals in Luxi, but the feeling is more exaggerated in Purple.
To make a proper comparison of these two mattresses, you really have to appreciate that these two mattresses possess the highest “point elastic” support surfaces of all the mattresses I have tested. The only other mattress with any particular focus on point elasticity is Helix.
Point elasticity is accomplished a little differently in the viscos foam and gel-grid layer of these two mattresses. But the theory is the same. Here is how this works.
The columnar shapes in Luxi when initially compressed feel soft, but when at a certain load point the “column” in each pod collapses providing the sensation of “falling into the surface.” Then, almost immediately, one is met with the restoring force from the underling materials. (this is where you get your support) So there is a three-step action that takes place. Initial loading, the collapse of the columns, and then meeting the restoring force. This is a simple way of thinking about both products and is the key action that leads to very high point pressure relief that is so great for protecting the shoulders and hips from excessive and prolonged pressure.
In the Purple mattress, it is the same process, but it happens in their gel-grid. In much the same way, initially, the entire grid surface first offers a degree of initial support, but then when under a specific load point, the walls of the grid shapes collapse or buckle and one quickly ends up meeting the restoring force from the underlying materials. It is almost like a pressure-relieving hole is created directly where the body part is the most pronounced, and pressure at that specific point is then transferred out to other adjacent areas. That is really effective pressure redistribution technology, and it can be felt.
The bottom line is that there is a certain amount of independence in the surface, as material in small isolated spots seems to be disconnected from the surrounding surface areas.
While both mattress provide a very unique feel due to their individual highly “point elastic” behavior, their feels are different. Luxi’s compression is, by virtue of the more smooth compression of the SBT foam. One other distinction is that in the Luxi SBT layer, the pedestals are totally disconnected from each another, which explains the low level of motion transfer from this “independent” feel.
Luxi uses high quality textiles woven and knitted right here in the USA. They take the cover one step further with ¾-inch quilt loft that includes both conventional foam and Dacron to enhance Luxi’s luxurious feel. Each mattress is made-to-order and hand sewn at Luxi’s manufacturing plant in Southern California.
One other attribute of the Luxi cover design is the absence of an internal fire barrier fabric. The ability to pass all of the required federal safety tests comes from the inherent properties of the cover fabric. Only along the borders of mattress are there specific flame resistant materials laminated into place. And there is a flame barrier that rests just behind the zipper and all this together provides the means for meeting all fire safety regulations with a focus on the minimizing flame barrier fabrics that may possess unwanted toxic chemicals.
Materials, origin, and assembly location is not disclosed. The cover is not removable and not recommended that it be laundered. Fire safety compliance from a Firegard Knit Barrier inside.
Because of the materials the gel grid can be felt slightly through the covering.
I think Luxi wins:
If looks matter, then you will not be disappointed by the aesthetics of either mattress. But I have to go with Luxi on this one because of the high quality quilted cover with an extra layer of foam sewn into it that enhances surface plushness (puffiness) and proves wicking and cooling with a unique waterfall edge design. This design means that no matter how frequently the mattress is unopened by its 360 degree zipper, the soft edges of the cover make for a fit and tailored look without the need to fluff and reposition the cover to make thinks look right. A lot of foam mattress constructions suffer in appearance because the cover and interior parts are disconnected and tend to float around independently, frequently requiring a little straightening out.
- TOP LAYER (LUXI is a four-layer vs. the three-layer construction for the Purple and has been assessed in it’s “soft” configuration)
3 1/2 inch SBT foam layer – A proprietary 4 lb. density enhanced stability viscos foam that has been fabricated in order to deliver collapsing column function for enhanced initial softness and distinguishable “point elastic” behavior.
2″ hyper-elastic polymer (feels like highly springy silicone).
Both of these top layer materials are consider to be highly “point elastic” so both are designed to relieve pressure points and align the body. The Luxi material delivers a softer, smoother feel and is designed to adapt to the consumer’s changing needs for years to come because the company and its pledge to stay connected to its customers and to provide over the phone maintenance of the product, even to include free adjunct materials, if the circumstance warrants. Luxi is a foam adjustable mattress that seriously challenges the one mattress fits all concept.
If you like a slightly springy mattress that has some bounce with a nice contouring effect, Purple is a good choice. Purple is a one mattress fits all company with a single firmness (medium firm), so if it is too firm or soft for you, you will need to order a topper or a thick mattress pad, which could defeat the advantage of their top layer technology.
- MIDDLE LAYERS – the 2nd layer:
(In the soft configuration) 1 inch Memory Foam Layer – 4 lb. Density Memory Foam
3.5″, 1.8lb conventional foam in a very soft undisclosed firmness level.
High density memory foam just below the surface adds to the performance of the mattress. Looked at this in conjunction with the SBT Layer, this memory foam layer contributes to and defines the restoring force after the column collapse of the SBT layer.
- MIDDLE LAYERS – the third layer
(In the soft configuration) 1 1/2 inch Latex layer – 4 lb. Dunlop Process, 100% Latex (20% natural/80% synthetic)
Purple is only a three-layer mattress so there are only two-layer above the base foam included in this comparison.
For foam mattresses, it’s the rule of thumb that the more layers the better. This may be true here. Changing between the soft, medium and firm configurations in the Luxi really works. If in the medium configuration, with the Latex layer on the top surface, the SBT preforms more as a foundation that will provide “ride” to the layers above it. The difference in surface tension between the flat and continuous surface of the Latex layer and the fabricated and interrupted surface of the SBT layer has to be a significant contributor to the distinct difference in the feel for these two configurations. They are really different.
- BASE LAYER:
3 1/2 inch conventional foam base layer – 2 lb. High density support foam
Four-inch conventional foam base layer – 2 lb. High density support foam
The base foam layer sits at the bottom of both mattress and really doesn’t effect the comfort much. Very similar material in both Luxi and Purple.
7.) TOTAL LAYERS: (of high technology materials used, other than conventional mattress foams):
Luxi is an adjustable mattress with three different feels –soft, medium, and firm — and this produces a wide range of bounce and sink. The high-resilience foam in the second layer, and the Latex in the third layer both work to provide a degree of springiness.
Purple is a highly elastic and bouncy mattress. Most of the springy sensation appears to be produced by the polymer gel grid. It’s really springy.
Neither of these mattresses possesses the old “slow deforming” and really heat sensitive feels of the older memory foam type mattresses. Clearly both are more lively and springy than that. Highest levels of springiness for LUXI are gotten in its Medium configuration. PURPLE is by far the most springy compared even to LUXI’s medium configuration.
- HEAT MANAGEMENT:
Luxi’s SBT layer provides a unique way to remove heat from the mattress that is yet another positive attribute of the SBT Technology. It convects heat and uses the SBT horizontal channels to remove heat from the mattress. SBT also allows much conducive neat transfer due to horizontal air movement for cooling.
As in most technology mattress constructions, surface movement leads to the movement of air as the means for heat management. Purple also has the benefit of the gel itself being a more effective heat conductor than foam. The grid system of Purple likely locks a certain amount of warm air between the sleeper and the mattress the “open to air flow” runs vertically
Measuring the difference between Luxi’s and Purple’s heat management performance is a challenge. Both sleep cool.
While both mattresses offer materials that promise temperature control. The polymer gel materials of Purple conduct heat, but the transfer of heat with the passage of air (convection) is by far the most effective way to keep the mattress cool. Luxi’s SBT layer creates large air channels that run horizontally. As stated before on this site, Luxi (in its soft configuration) may be the most breathable memory foam mattress on the market.
- OFF GASSING:
All foams are CertiPur certified and have an open cell structure that insures no long term or lingering problems from off gassing.
All foams are modern technology, open cell that breath in application and discharge any fumes that may be present from the raw materials are created
All foam and plastic materials emit very slight amounts of process gas as part of their formation process. But is sufficient care is taken and the products are not hermetically sealed in their packaging, off gassing really isn’t an issue. There may be a faint “new mattress” smell right when it comes out of the packaging. If it is noticeable, it will fade within a few hours and is not toxic.
Both mattresses have minimum off-gassing as both are made of quality and bio-friendly materials. Purple makes a point of stating their materials are “food-grade,” and they show a goofy video of a guy attempting to eat the grid in their promotional video, but that is actually dangerously misleading. Food grade only means that the polymer in the gel grid is safe to come in contact with food during processing or packaging. I guess a Purple can be eaten, but it will probably have little nutritional value, so let’s leave that claim along.
Being “CertiPure certified” however, is the highest standard for the sustainability of the raw materials used in mattress construction and means:
Made without ozone depleters
Made without PBDEs, TDCPP or TCEP (“Tris”) flame retardants
Made without mercury, lead and other heavy metals
Made without formaldehyde
Made without phthalates regulated by the Consumer Product Safety Commission
Low VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) emissions for indoor air quality (less than 0.5 parts per million)
- EDGE SUPPORT:
The SBT element ends up delivering a degree of edge support unlike most memory foam mattresses. When you sit on the edge of the Luxi the buckling column collapses under you seat, away from the edge about four inches, so you sink back instead of forward.
There is no specific consideration given to edge support.
Here’s where we think Luxi really wins in this category
Care has also been taken to insure that no matter what the mattress size, that the SBT layer always has a row of the supportive pedestals right at the edge of the mattress, whether it’s a twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, or California king. They have done a good job with the computer modeling to get each size just right at the edge, and it’s for this reason that I have to align with Luxi.
- RETURN POLICY:
It seems that Luxi is in lock step with the rest of the online mattress retailers, with a 1000 Night Pledge. Think of it as a 100 night trial but it last longer. Which means at any time during the first 1,000 nights, one of the company’s sleep experts is available help customers resolve issues.
A no-risk, 100-day no questions asked, free trial period
Here’s why we think Luxi wins again
Both mattresses offer a free return sleep trial, but Luxi also offers a 1,000-night pledge. (the best trial period I have seen to date)They can also handle special circumstances that might arise during the first 1,000 nights at no additional change by offering supplemental materials that owners can put inside the mattress. The Luxi team recognizes how individual sleep surface needs may change over time. You can’t get better than that.
Ten years is an industry standard anything more than 10 years is just a gimmick. Look at the very best top-line products from the major store brands. They are all limiting their warrantees, mostly just during the past couple of years, The historical industry practice of offering 20 and 25 year warranties on mattresses that every one knew were really functional for maybe only eight to 12 years was just that. A gimmick. Today, in part from pressure being exerted by the online mattress retailers, it the manufactures, all of them, are leaving the extension of additional warranty periods to the retailers. And again, any that extend much beyond 10 years are primarily marketing driven and should be avoided. It’s imperative to have realistic expectations for mattress life. Just as our bodies experience physical changes over time, worn mattress lose both support and comfort, so mattress replacement is essential to help ensure continuous sleep quality. No mattress is comfortable and supportive indefinitely. The warranty, and wear life expectations for both the LUXI and PURPLE mattresses are in line with the best that the major Brands have to offer.
THE FINAL VERDICT:
Both of these mattress are high-end, deliver real mattress technology and the ability to relieve pressure points by virtue of their respective highly “point elastic” surfaces. This is the biggest thing that really puts them at the top. And Luxi is the only adjustable foam mattress that can be reconfigured by the user, where each side of the mattress (right and left) can be set for sleep partners with different physical needs or personal preferences.
Luxi definitely is a better choice if you like the firmness and support of an innerspring-type mattress but want the conforming and cushioning comfort of memory foam.
I think Purple is particularly good for those who don’t like memory foam.
Luxi is one of my top overall picks for these reasons:
- Luxi uses only the highest quality materials for premium decadence, feel and sleep experience and anticipated wear life performance.
- It’s adjustable (soft, medium, and firm)
- Splits down the middle, without leaving any noticeable line of demarcation, giving couples sleeping together the choice to set their side to soft, medium or firm, depending on their needs or preferences.
- Adaptability – changes with you over time and the ability to make changes has a purpose; to provide the consumer some control. With all of the other things in the sleep environment in the modern home, such as fan speed, air temperature, sound levels, light levels, fragrance, top-of-bed products and materials, , why should the mattress be the only thing in the room that cannot be changed? What if you want to make a change to accommodate the seasons, for some new closeness, or maybe just for the fun of it.
- The 1,000-night pledge. You cannot get better than a 1,000-night pledge when it comes to a company standing behind the quality and usefulness of their product,
- Support Balance Technology – for pressure relief, alignment, cooling, support all that stuff.
- The price is right. $150 less for queen and $300 less for king.
- And the feel is the deal – there is a lot going on here folks, Luxi is one of my top picks.
Both Luxi’s SBT and Purple’s gel-grid provide specifically for reducing pressure where we are the most likely to find a pressure hot spot, and contribute to a more precise approach to providing spine alignment for side or back sleeping, though the Luxi is more versatile for those who like stomach sleeping, as Luxi can be adjusted to a firm setting, that orthopedic doctors say is better for stomach sleepers.
Overall, the biggest difference between Luxi and Purple is in the method of delivering their respective “point elastic” support technologies. The gel-grid material may take some getting used to. Purple asks that its customers sleep on it for at least 30 days minimum before deciding if it is really liked or not. It’s also possible that the grid can be felt through the covering. And beware, the mattress, at 140 pounds in king, is the heaviest by close to a 30% margin, of any of the mattresses I’ve encountered online thus far. This makes getting it set up a bit challenging. But that doesn’t diminish its sleep value.
The “pod” shaped features of the Luxi might also be felt when the Luxi is in the soft configuration, but you would really have to be a super sensitive person to detect them. The functional foam layering techniques used throughout the mattress to achieve three different feels is awesome and the mattress is available in all sizes. The company will even provide a “single sleeper” version of the king and queen –not split down the middle– sizes for the most luxurious individuals who sleep all alone in a big bed.
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