Sure, the phrase “sleep like a baby” may not be that accurate, but the best baby crib can at least help you move in the right direction of sleep, right?
A baby crib is an essential item for many families, because we know that the safest sleep happens when an infant is placed in a crib, on their back, without blankets or toys. But finding the right crib can feel like a massive undertaking, especially when you consider the importance of safe sleep. The good news is we have a really clear understanding of what makes a crib safe. By following these simple guidelines, new parents can sleep peacefully — at least until it’s time for that next middle-of-the-night feeding!
Finding a Safe Crib
The safest cribs are actually the most basic, according to Consumer Reports. Parents are encouraged to avoid drop-side cribs and bumpers. It is also recommended that parents buy their mattress simultaneously, to ensure it is the perfect crib mattress for your chosen crib. If a crib doesn’t fit just right, there are risks of baby’s limbs getting caught in gaps between the crib slats and the mattress.
There are certainly plenty of things to think about when buying a crib for your baby, but there are organizations who have done their best to make the search simple. The Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association offers certification to cribs that pass their rigorous testing, including annual testing by a third-party to make sure products made specifically for babies and children are safe. Looking for this certification is a great way to make sure the crib you are considering is a trustworthy choice for your new baby.
Second hand cribs may save parents a lot of money, but they’re not recommended for one very specific reason — it is difficult to be certain an older crib meets safety standards or if it has been subject to recalls.
Best Overall Crib
With 1,544 reviews and a 4.7 star rating on Amazon, naming the Emery 4-in-1 Crib by Delta Children as the best crib was an easy choice.
At the forefront of every new parents’ mind is safety and JPMA has given this crib the thumbs up as a safe choice in safety standards for infants and toddlers. Manufacturers test it for lead and other toxins and Delta Children states those should never be a concern for parents buying this crib.
Outside of the safety of this baby crib, we love that you’re going to get your money’s worth. Not only is this a mid-priced crib that will fit well within most budgets, it is built to last from infancy to toddlerhood. As a convertible crib, it can be converted from a crib to a daybed, toddler bed, and even a full bed with a headboard.
The Best All-in-One Crib
What’s not to love about a crib that allows for midnight diaper changes with everything you need in arms reach? An all-in-one crib has a small changing table and a couple drawers attached and we love the Abby Convertible Crib by Delta Children. This crib is available in grey, dark chocolate, and white. Like many of the full-sized cribs offered by this brand, it can be converted into a daybed, toddler bed, and full bed as your child grows.
Delta Children is a brand you can trust to manufacturer cribs with safety in mind. This model passes all the necessary tests and has a JPMA certification too. Reviewers on Amazon gave this crib a 4.8 star rating, gushing about the simple set up and quality of the crib. One word of advice from many reviewers — take your time and follow the directions when putting this crib together.
The Best Budget-Friendly Crib
Buying secondhand or accepting hand-me-down cribs generally isn’t advised by safety experts, but that doesn’t mean you need to break your budget in order to provide your infant with a safe place to sleep. At just over $100, the Synergy 5-in-1 Convertible Crib by Dream On Me is the perfect option for parents who need to spend less on bedding for the babe.
The low price tag doesn’t come with safety compromises, though; this crib is JPMA certified for safety standards and the manufacturers turn to a 3rd party lab for tests that guarantee that lead and other toxins aren’t a concern.
Parents can choose from 13 different colors and finishes, including white, natural, and mint. Once your baby is ready for the “big kid bed,” the Synergy Crib can be converted with the purchase of additional pieces in a conversion kit.
The Best Convertible Crib
Convertible cribs are a chance to get the most life from a crib because they’re made to serve your child well beyond infancy. Once your child is ready for a toddler bed, or has learned to climb out of their crib, the Hudson Convertible by Babyletto can easily become a safe option for your growing escape artist.
It’s no wonder this crib has earned a 4.8 star rating on Amazon. It is made from sustainable wood options sourced in New Zealand so you can feel good about a purchase that is good for the planet. It passes safety tests with flying colors, earning it a Green Gold Certification. The design is modern and you can choose from seven different finishes, including washed natural, white, and espresso.
The Best Portable Crib
Whether you’re low on space and need a crib that can be tucked out of your way or need an option for when you’re on the road, a portable crib can give you the flexibility you need while still serving as your main crib at home.
The Dylan Folding Portable Crib by DaVinci is green guard certified, compact enough for small spaces, and compatible with mini crib mattresses. Buyers on Amazon left 362 reviews, giving this portable crib a 4.7 star rating. Some of the coolest features of this crib are that it can fold up to be stored away or rolls on wheels to move it throughout your home.
The Best Mini Crib
When we learned we’d be adding a fourth child to our small home, we knew we’d need to get creative about where our new baby would sleep. We found a mini crib we love for our bedroom, allowing us to room share for the first year without sacrificing too much space.
The Babyletto Gelato Mini Crib is unquestionably one of the greatest mini crib options out there. Like the other options from Babyletto, wood is sourced sustainably and manufactured with safety practices that earns it a Green Gold Certification and provides your baby with a safe place to sleep. The high-quality nature of this crib, along with its stylish, modern design has earned it a 4.5 star rating from parents on Amazon.
Read more: Check out Truly Mama’s full guide on the best mini cribs.
The Most Stylish Crib
What can I say? Babyletto is knocking it out of the park designing safe, high quality cribs that look great in the most stylish nurseries. The Sprout 4-in-1 Crib has all the practical features that make a crib great, including converting to a toddler bed, day bed, and full bed, and it stands up to the safety standards Babyletto is known for among parents. The mid-century modern inspiration has earned it a lot of praise from parents online.
“I absolutely love the design and it fits perfectly with my gender-neutral and mid-century influenced nursery,” says PeppersMom on Amazon. She warns: “The crib was a little hard to assemble, but not so different than most furniture.”
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