Baby Crib Reviews
- Best Overall Baby Crib
- Best Cheap Baby Crib
- Editor’s Choice
- Best For Traveling
- Best Convertible
- Best Modern Baby Crib
- Determining Your Needs
- Types of Baby Cribs
- Features of a Good Quality Baby Crib
- Easy Assembly
- Crib Bars/Slats
- Corner Posts
- Solid Wood Construction
- Adjustable Mattress Heights
- Teething Rails
- Safety Certifications
- Look for Standard Sized Cribs
- Safety Considerations
- Never purchase a used crib
- Avoid cribs with drop sides
- Proper Crib Positioning
- Don’t Use Crib Bumpers
- Crib Mobiles are fine for awhile
- Convert or upgrade at the right time
- Read Next
|Best Overall Baby Crib|
DaVinci Kalani 4-in-1 Convertible Crib
|4 convertible options||1 year warranty
|Best Cheap Baby Crib|
Dream On Me Ashton 5-in-1 Convertible Crib
|5 convertible options||8 finish choices
Delta Children Emery 4-in-1 Crib
|4 convertible options||3 mattress height levels to choose from
|Best For Traveling|
Babybjorn travel crib
|Lightweight||Easy to set up and put away
Million Dollar Baby Crib
|4 convertible options||Convenient full-size storage drawer
|Best Modern Baby Crib|
IKEA Baby Crib
|Excellent air flow||Two height levels for base
Baby Cribs Buyer’s Guide
Determining Your Needs
The first thing you need to do before you start researching baby cribs is to determine what you need. This may sound simple but there are several questions that you should ask yourself to make sure that you choose the crib that is going to meet all of your baby’s needs and your preferences. We have listed these questions below.
Do you want a convertible crib?
Convertible cribs are cribs that can be turned into toddler beds, daybeds, twin beds, and even full-sized beds depending on the model of crib. These are investments because a well made convertible crib can last from your baby’s first day home all the way into adulthood. Some parents don’t worry about this and are fine purchasing a crib and first and then purchasing other beds later as the child grows. This is a personal preference decision.
Do you have other furniture you want to match?
There are many different types of crib styles on the market from the very simple to the very decorative. If you have other furniture in the nursery already, is it important to you that the baby crib match it in style and finish or do you want something that complements it? Many cribs have matching dressers, changing tables, and rocker recliners that you can choose if you are looking for an entire set.
What finish do you prefer?
The finish of a crib determines the color it is. There are many different finishes available from white to cherry. If the finish color is important to you, look for a baby crib that offers several choices of finishes.
Do you have a budget?
If you have a budget you want to stick to, have this number or range in mind before you start researching so you’re not looking at cribs that are outside of that range. Cribs come in all price points but keep in mind that you will be using this crib for at least two years so you don’t want to look for the cheapest crib you can find. Cheaper cribs are also usually made with cheaper materials so they won’t last as long as a well mad, solid wood crib.
Types of Baby Cribs
There are several types of cribs on the market for you to choose from; your needs will play a part in the type of crib that you choose. We have listed the different types below so you can tell the difference between them and decide which one fits your needs and preferences the best.
Standard Baby Cribs
Standard baby cribs are what you usually see for sale. They have four fixed sides and slats or a solid mattress base. One of the advantages to purchasing a standard crib is that they are good choices for those on a budget. They have many different styles to choose from as well. Standard cribs have simple construction that is sturdy and typically long lasting. One of the disadvantages that standard cribs can have is that they are not easily moved from one position to another and they don’t have the features that other types of baby cribs have.
Convertible Baby Cribs
Convertible cribs are also called lifetime cribs because they literally grow up with your child. Most convertible cribs can be converted from a regular crib to a toddler bed, daybed, and lastly a twin or full-size bed depending on the model of the crib. Most are usually 4 or 5-in-1 designs. Some come with a toddler bed conversion kit, but you will usually need to purchase additional conversion kits for the daybed, twin bed or full-sized bed.
Convertible cribs are an investment that will last throughout your child’s life until they are well into college. Some even take their cribs turned beds with them when they move into their own apartment. These types of cribs are built to last with solid wood and sturdy, quality materials. Even though they are more expensive than other types of cribs, they last so long that the savings is spread out over the years that you would be purchasing other types of beds.
Portable Baby Cribs
Portable cribs are great for a number of uses. For starters, if you are short on space, a portable crib is perfect. You can move a portable crib from room to room easily which makes it a great choice for parents who like keep the baby close at all times. Portable cribs usually have wheels that will lock once it is in the desired place.
Make sure that when you have the crib in the spot you want, you lock the wheels for safety reasons. Make sure that the wheels don’t scratch and damage your flooring. Even though portable cribs fold up easily, you will still need to find a place to store the crib mattress.
Travel Baby Cribs
Travel cribs are excellent for those who take frequent trips with their children and are also good choices for those who like to camp. Travel cribs can be folded up and slipped into a storage bag and carried easily.
They are also great choices for grandparent’s houses or if you take your baby to a sitter’s house while you are at work. Travel cribs are not meant to be used long term and the mesh can easily be torn.
They are very lightweight and are good for what they are intended for which is a temporary sleeping place for your child while you are camping or on vacation or some other temporary situation.
Multi-Purpose Baby Cribs
A multi-purpose baby crib is one that has other types of furniture incorporated into the design of the crib. Common types of furniture that is combined with a crib include shelves, changing tables, and dressers.
Many parents like multi-purpose cribs because they are less expensive than purchasing the two pieces of furniture separately and also because it keeps other baby supplies convenient to the crib. The additional furniture that is paired with the crib is not usually full-size to prevent the unit from being too large and bulky.
Round Baby Cribs
Round baby cribs are specialty cribs that are very uncommon. They are usually used in nurseries where the parents want something completely unique and unusual. Many round cribs come with canopies which gives the crib a medieval look.
Parents that want to decorate their little girl’s nursery with a princess theme will love this style. Because they are so uncommon is can be difficult to find crib sheets and mattresses that fit this type of crib. They are also very expensive.
Most round cribs are not as large as a standard rectangular crib so they cannot be used for as long as a rectangle crib can. If money is no object and you want something spectacular and fancy while your baby is very young, this may be what you are looking for.
Features of a Good Quality Baby Crib
When you start researching cribs and looking at the different choices, be sure to look for these things we have listed below.
– All baby cribs will require some kind of assembly with the exception of travel cribs and portable cribs that may already be in one piece due to their ability to fold up. You want to look for a crib that is not overly complicated to put together. Check the assembly instructions and make sure you have the tools required if they do not come with the crib.
The slats or spindles that surround the crib should be spaced properly to prevent an arm or leg from getting stuck in between the bars. The recommended and safe distance is 2 and 3/8” apart or less. Anything farther apart than that is a hazard.
One of the important parts of the crib’s construction are the corner posts. They contribute to how sturdy the crib is once it is set up. Make sure that the corner posts do not rise higher than 1/16th of an inch higher than the side rails. Tall corner posts are a safety hazard for the baby, who can get a piece of clothing caught on the high post, and should not be used.
Solid Wood Construction
Cribs that are made of solid wood are going to be sturdier, safer and they are going to last a lot longer as well. Some of the cheaper models can be made of plywood or even pressboard so pay attention to what materials are used in construction. Solid wood will cost more but it will also last a lot longer too.
Adjustable Mattress Heights
Look for cribs that offer several height levels. This is very important for the continued safety of your baby as they get older. Put the crib on the highest level when they are newborns and move them down to the different levels as they baby gets older and their skills increase such as sitting up and pulling up to a standing position.
Once the baby starts to stand up the crib rail is typically right at their mouth level. When a baby starts teething, this rail becomes a terrific and popular teething tool. For this reason you want to protect the baby from getting splinters, paint and wood in their mouths as well as ruining the rail of the crib.
Some models of cribs have acrylic teething rails which fit right down on the top rail so the baby can gnaw on that to their heart’s content with no dangers. Teething rails can be purchased separately if the crib you choose doesn’t come with a teething rail. These useful rails will extend the life of the crib and prevent the wood or your baby’s mouth from being damaged.
Make sure that the crib you are considering has the required certifications from the international ASTM and the US CPSC. These safety inspections let you know that the crib has passed tests that will keep your baby safe. Also look for cribs that use non-toxic finishes and that are free of lead and phthalates.
Look for Standard Sized Cribs
Although unusual sizes may seem interesting or unique, when it comes to finding proper baby crib mattresses and baby crib sheets to fit them, you may run into some problems. Look for cribs that state they are standard sized and fit all standard mattresses. It will be much easier when you are shopping for the perfect baby boy and girl crib beddings.
Look at customer comments for the cribs you are considering, to see what is being said about stability. A crib that wobbles once it is assembled is a safety risk for your baby. You want that crib to be a stable and solid as possible once you have put it together. The customer reviews are an excellent way to get some “insider” information on the different models you are considering.
Usually, a crib you purchase from a reputable retail outlet such as Amazon will comply with all mandatory safety standards, but this is not something to assume. Make sure that you know of any cribs that have been recalled and make sure none of the cribs you are considering are on the recall list. Cribs are recalled for all sorts of reasons and you should take these recalls seriously. We have listed some important safety considerations to keep in the forefront of your mind when you are purchasing your crib and after you have it home.
Never purchase a used crib
Although it may be very tempting to purchase a used crib, you have to be super careful when doing this and the AAP actually recommends against this practice. You do not know how old a crib may be when it is purchased used and it could be out of compliance with the latest safety regulations. It could also be painted with lead paint. When purchasing a new crib you can rest assured that your crib has been put through the necessary safety testing as it will state in the description that it has passed all safety standards.
Avoid cribs with drop sides
Cribs with drop sides used to be very common but they can be very dangerous for babies. The drop sides are notorious for coming loose and detaching where the baby can slip down and get stuck, suffocating or strangling in the process. Drop-sided cribs were banned in 2011.
Proper Crib Positioning
Keep the baby’s crib away from the window, window blinds and curtains. These can be very dangerous for a baby and pose serious strangulation hazards. This also goes for cords on lamps or baby monitors as well. All cords should be kept at least three feet away from the crib.
Don’t Use Crib Bumpers
As beautiful and put together as bumpers look they pose very serious threats to the safety of your baby. They are considered a SIDS hazards by the AAP and other organizations.
Crib Mobiles are fine for awhile
Crib mobiles are wonderful devices that can soothe and entertain the baby but you need to ensure that you are using them as safely as possible. Mobiles should not be used once the baby is sitting up on their own as they can get tangled in the mobile or pull it down onto their heads.
This could be anywhere from 4-6 months of age. Once the baby is older than 4 months, you may want to switch to a crib entertainment center that attaches to the side rather than the mobile that hangs over their heads. When attaching the mobile or the entertainment center, ensure that you attach it in the most secure way possible, checking the attachment at least once a day.
Convert or upgrade at the right time
It is important to know when to upgrade to the next stage of bed for your baby. Most babies are in a crib for at least two years but this can vary from baby to baby. If your baby is very small and doesn’t make attempts to crawl out, they can remain in the crib a little longer than the one that is scaling the sides of the crib to get out at barely two years of age.
Make sure that you are adhering to all height and weight limits that are stated on the crib you purchase. Weight limits tend to be a lot lower on travel cribs and portable cribs due to their less sturdy construction and materials.
A baby crib is a very important purchase for your baby so you want it to be the best quality you can afford. Never look for a crib with “cheapest” being your qualifications. The safety of your baby is of utmost importance and an ill constructed baby crib can pose a lot of danger to your baby.
With all of the choices available, you may find it overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. The information in this buyer’s guide is designed to take the guesswork and worry out of purchasing a baby crib. This knowledge will help you sort through all the different models and types so you can choose the one that will meet all your preferences, lifestyle needs and baby’s needs too.
When purchasing something of such importance, you want to take the time to research properly and ensure that you have chosen the best possible choice you can get.
- DaVinci – http://www.davincibaby.com/
- Dream On Me Ashton 4 in 1 Convertible Crib – https://dreamonme.com/
- Delta Children Emery 4-in-1 Crib – http://www.deltachildren.com/
- Babybjorn travel crib – https://www.babybjorn.com/
- Million Dollar Baby Crib – http://www.milliondollarbaby.com/
- IKEA Baby Crib – http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/categories/departments/childrens_ikea/