We have affiliate relationships where we are paid a commission on sales through some of our links. See our disclosures.

Purple Pillow Review

If you’ve done any online exploring for a new mattress, chances are you’ve come across Purple. Known for its proprietary Hyper-Elastic Polymer, Purple’s mattresses have steadily risen in popularity, and are unlike anything else on the market… But what about its other sleep accessories?

Well, as of last year, Purple offers two (very) different pillows — the original Purple Pillow and the Purple Plush Pillow. How do they compare, and which one is best for you? You’ll just have to keep reading to find out.

Purple Pillow
Purple Pillow

Built with contouring hyper-elastic polymer, the Purple pillow is fantastic for those in need of pressure relief. 

What Are The Purple Pillows Made Of?

The Purple pillows

The Purple Plush Pillow

Okay, let’s start with the Purple Plush Pillow because, frankly, it’s construction is a bit more straightforward.

The cover fabric of this pillow is made from a blend of nylon and lyocell. Most of you are probably familiar with nylon, but Lyocell is a cellulosic fiber made from dissolving wood pulp, and it often goes by its brand name, Tencel. And lyocell brings all sorts of perks to the game as it’s naturally moisture-wicking, resistant to wrinkles, and sustainably sourced. So, the cover fabric is not only soft, it’s absorbent and eco-friendly too.

Now, here’s where things get a little interesting. There are two zippers that span the long sides of this pillow which are intended to make it, as the folks at Purple put it, “adjustably fluffy.” The zippers do not give you access to the internal fill, but they do affect the pillow’s firmness. Essentially, leaving both zippers closed compresses the internal fill, creating a firmer feel, and leaving them open lets the fill breathe, creating a softer feel.

Experimenting with the Purple Plush adjustable zippers!

So, what is the internal fill made of? Well, this pillow is stuffed full of 100% polyester fiber, it’s super fluffy and (yes, you guessed it) very plush. It’s designed to be huggable and offer that traditional cloud-like feel that many of us are familiar with. The original Purple pillow, on the other hand, is a totally different story.

FAQ

Q: Is the Purple Plush Pillow softer than the Original Purple Pillow? A: Yes! Though the Purple Plush features a higher loft, it offers a softer level of firmness as compared Purple's original pillow.

The Original Purple Pillow

The cover fabric of this pillow is also made from nylon, but instead of adding lyocell to the mix, it’s blended with spandex. So it’s still soft to the touch, but also very stretchy and breathable. What makes this pillow unique, though, is what’s inside the cover. The internal fill is made from one piece of the company’s proprietary “Purple stuff” known as Hyper-Elastic Polymer — and there is literally no other pillow like it.

Hyper-Elastic Polymer is designed to be bouncy, stretchy, and extremely durable. Also featured in Purple’s mattresses, the Hyper-Elastic Polymer in this pillow is arranged in a pattern called the “Smart Comfort Grid.” What’s so smart about it? Well, dozens of tiny, squishy, triangles conform to the sleeper’s head and neck without losing shape anywhere else. And, according to the folks at Purple, it will never break down or go flat no matter how often you use it.

Pressing into Hyper-Elastic Polymer

Additionally, this grid-like structure provides great airflow and breathability, which helps to dissipate the sleeper’s body heat. Though the loft (about 2 inches) is consistent throughout, the sides of this pillow are designed to be firmer than the middle, as side sleepers need firmer support in order to maintain a neutral spine.

Now that we know what each Purple pillow is made of, let’s take a closer examination of how they feel, shall we?

FAQ

Q: Does the Original Purple Pillow need a pillowcase? A: Nope! The cover fabric is soft, stretchy, and breathable, so sleepers should feel free to enjoy this pillow with or without a pillowcase. In fact, because this pillow has an untraditional shape, folks might find that a pillowcase doesn't fit well.

How Do The Purple Pillows Feel?

The Purple Plush Pillow

By its name, you’ve probably already figured out that this pillow offers a very plush feel. But which positions are going to be most compatible with this sleep accessory?

Well, not only does this pillow have a huggably fluffy feel, but it’s got a pretty lofty profile of about 5 inches. So, back and side sleepers are going to be particularly compatible with the Purple Plush, as it does a great job of conforming to the head and neck, and relieving pressure in the shoulders. It’s also quite shapeable, so sleepers can easily mold this pillow in order to manipulate the loft and firmness a bit.

Snoozing on the Purple Plush pillow

For these same reasons, though, this pillow is not ideal for stomach sleeping. In order to maintain a neutral spine, stomach sleepers need a pillow with low loft of about 2 inches or fewer. In my experience testing this pillow in the prone position, the high loft craned my head upwards, forcing my neck out of alignment with my spine (ouch).

Ultimately, I found the traditional shape and cloud-like feel to offer a very cozy sleeping experience in both the supine and lateral positions. However, in experimenting with the adjustable zippers, I didn’t note much of a difference in firmness. Having both zippers closed did make the pillow a bit more compact, and slightly firmer, but I can’t say the difference was very noticeable.

I will say, however, that leaving both zippers open did allow for better airflow within the internal fill, which made for a cooler snooze.

The Verdict: Back and side sleepers who love a classically fluffy feel and a traditional shape will be most compatible with this pillow.

Purple Pillow
Purple Pillow

Built with contouring hyper-elastic polymer, the Purple pillow is fantastic for those in need of pressure relief. 

The Original Purple Pillow

I have to admit, I was a little apprehensive about this pillow at first. When I unzipped its cylindrical packaging, and the Hyper-Elastic Polymer unfolded into my arms, I remember thinking: This is a pillow? It literally weighs ten pounds, and there’s nothing fluffy about it at all. However, once I laid it down on the mattress and settled into some back sleeping, I was pleasantly surprised!

Lying in the supine position, my head felt gently cradled, held in perfect neutral alignment with my spine. And the folks from Purple are definitely right about one thing: this pillow does not lose its shape anywhere, no matter how many times you use it. It’s got such a resilient response to pressure, and the hyper-elastic polymer tightly conforms to your head as your transition positions.

Back sleeping with the original Purple pillow!

Because it’s got a low loft, though, I did not find this pillow to be supportive enough in the lateral position. When I was on my side, my head was sort of tilted downwards, and my shoulder was bearing the brunt of my body’s weight. I also didn’t really find the pillow’s edges to be much firmer than the middle of the pillow. In fact, the whole pillow is on the firm side, in my opinion.

Conversely, this pillow’s low loft made for a comfy stomach sleeping experience, as my head wasn’t craned upwards at all. In my opinion, back sleepers can take their pick between either Purple pillow; both conform to pressure nicely and keep your posture healthy. When it comes to the original Purple pillow, though, I think stomach sleepers might really enjoy its unique feel and support!

The Verdict: Back and stomach sleepers who like a firmer feel and a very quick response to pressure will be most compatible with this pillow.

Which Purple Pillow Should I Buy?

Alright, sleepers, let’s recap these pillows’ perks and pitfalls so that you can determine which might be the right fit for you.

Purple Pillow
Purple Pillow

Built with contouring hyper-elastic polymer, the Purple pillow is fantastic for those in need of pressure relief. 

The Purple Plush Pillow

  • Fluffy & Huggable — This pillow has that classic, cloud-like feel that many of us are familiar with. It’s shapeable, huggable, and comfortably conforms to pressure. Back and side sleepers who like to mold or embrace their pillow are likely to be fond of this one!
  • Moisture-wicking & Breathable — Between the moisture-wicking cover fabric and the enhanced breathability that the un-zipping provides, this pillow is a great pick for sleepers who run hot.
  • Traditional Shape — This pillow has a traditional shape and a lofty build so, unlike the original Purple pillow, it fits a pillowcase really well.

The Original Purple

  • Durable & Resilient — This pillow is designed to be very durable, and offer a quick response to pressure. When you lay your head upon it, the “Smart Comfort Grid” tightly conforms to pressure, and doesn’t lose shape anywhere else on the pillow’s surface.
  • Breathable — The grid-like structure of this pillow allows for consistent airflow, helping to draw heat away from the sleeper’s head and neck. This ensures that the pillow won’t warm up during the night.
  • Low Loft — The low loft of this pillow helps stomach sleepers maintain neutral spine alignment. Stomach sleepers who prefer a firmer feel should definitely give this pillow a try!

Purple Pillow Complaints

The Purple Plush Pillow

  • Frequent Fluffing Required — As is often the case with pillows stuffed with polyester fibers, the Purple Plush has a tendency to go a little flat from time to time. So, you may find that you have to administer some enlivening fluffs in order to help it maintain its loft.
  • Not Notably Adjustable — While I like the concept, the zippers didn’t make much of an impact on this pillow’s firmness. For me, the pillow felt only slightly firmer when its zippers were closed.
  • Not For Stomach Sleepers — With a lofty profile of about 5 inches, this pillow is just too tall for stomach sleepers. Remember: stomach sleepers need a pillow with low loft in order to maintain a neutral spine and alleviate neck pain.

The Original Purple Pillow

  • Heavy — Not everybody is going to want to sleep on a pillow that weighs 10 pounds. Not to mentioned, it’s not fluffy, shapeable, or huggable. So, if that’s what you’re looking for, I’d go with the Purple Plush.
  • Not Traditional — Because this pillow does not feature a traditional shape, it doesn’t fit inside a pillowcase as well as the Purple Plush. Its low loft, rectangular shape, and heavy weight makes a pillowcase look a little baggy on the original Purple pillow.
  • Low Loft — Side sleepers typically need a pillow with higher loft in order to maintain a neutral spine, and this pillow falls a bit short when it comes to lateral support. However, petite side sleepers who like a firm feel should still give this pillow a try, as it’s better suited to those with narrow shoulders.

Anything Else I Should Know?

Purple Pillow
Purple Pillow

Built with contouring hyper-elastic polymer, the Purple pillow is fantastic for those in need of pressure relief. 

  • Pricing — $49 for the Plush, and $99 for the Original
  • Free Shipping & Returns — within the U.S.
  • 1 Year Warranty — for both pillows
  • 100 Night Trial Period — for both pillows
  • Wash Care Purple Plush — Wash on a cold, gentle cycle, and tumble dry on low heat.
  • Wash Care Original Purple — Wash the cover fabric on a cold, gentle cycle, and tumble dry on low heat. Then, hand-wash the hyper-elastic polymer with warm water and a mild detergent. Air dry.
Adjustable Height, Responsive, & Cool
  • Materials
  • Comfort
  • Support
  • Value
  • Cooling
  • Smell
  • Company
4.9

Summary

The Purple pillow is one of a kind. This pillow utilizes Purple’s hyper-elastic, smart grid, polymer material as the core of the pillow. The use of this polymer creates a highly responsive, yet soft feel. Built with a soft center and firmer edges, the Purple pillow is designed to cradle the head while supporting the neck. If you’e in the market for a new pillow and don’t know where to start, the Purple pillow offer a good value for all styles of sleepers.

The following two tabs change content below.
Avatar
Sarah is the Senior Writer and bedding expert at Sleepopolis. Every week, she personally tests and reviews new pillows, sheet sets, and other sleep accessories. She accompanies every video review with a meticulously detailed article to ensure her audience has all the pertinent info they need for the best shopping experience possible. Perhaps that’s why her fans have dubbed her “the most thorough pillow reviewer on the Internet.” Having tested everything from sleep trackers to mattress toppers, Sarah's expertise runs deep and is always expanding. She received her degree in Creative Writing from Brooklyn College and spends her free time doing stand-up, making pasta, and hanging with her cats.
Avatar

Latest posts by Sarah Riccio (see all)