Looking To Buy a New Pack n Play Mattress?
Congratulations on your new bundle of joy! Whether you’ve hit the official “nesting” stage or not, at some point you’re going to want to buy a comfortable new mattress for your pack n play. Here are a few tips and guidelines for this process, as well as a thorough review of five popular mattresses, plus the winner for the best pack n play mattress available today.
Before we go over things like comfort, size and cuteness, let’s discuss what characteristics a baby mattress must have in order to be safe. Infants are unable to reposition themselves and are just learning how to breathe and move. Most importantly, parents or guardians need to provide a safe space for the newest member of the tribe.
Here’s what to look for:
Firmness is Key
As much as you might think that your baby wants to luxuriate on a soft, pillowy mattress, remember this above all else: you need to have a nice, firm surface for newborns. No exceptions. As mentioned earlier, an infant cannot roll over right away, and if the mattress is too soft or cozy, it is a suffocation risk.
That being said, it’s important to note that in general, safe sleep recommendations also include placing your baby on its back, not adding any blankets or stuffed animals, and maintaining a good temperature by dressing your baby in appropriate clothing for the evening.
Heavier Rather Than Lighter
Again, you want a nice solid base for your baby, even if it’s a portable mattress. Within no time at all, he or she will be rolling and moving, and you don’t want anything flimsy beneath their bodies. It’s also helpful for their developing neck, spine and back to have a sturdy mattress.
What your mattress is made from is also critically important. Even with a mattress pad and/or a sheet covering it, the materials in the mattress matter! Your child will be in proximity to them, breathing them in, and perhaps even touching them, so it’s important to be mindful with your purchase.
Pack n Play Specifics
As you may already know, a pack n play is a popular portable crib set-up, and this is just describing the basic model as there are all sorts of bells and whistles available. Pack n plays come with adjustable mattress height settings, so as an infant, you are able to use the bassinet setting and place your baby in a higher, more accessible location. Once he or she gets a bit bigger, you can lower the mattress so your child is safely nestled in a deeper space.
More deluxe models have changing stations or smaller, dedicated bassinet additions. There also might be storage bags on the sides for diaper changes or mobiles that clip onto the rails. They offer all sorts of varieties of pack n plays!
Many parents opt to upgrade from the included mattress for something a bit more comfortable or customized. Remember, the older and more mobile your child is, the safer it is for them to have a softer mattress.
You also want to carefully check the size of the new mattress, and ensure that it will fit snugly into the frame of your pack n play. While they are generally similar in size, an inch or two difference in the model or the mattress could spell trouble. Any gaps or spaces are unacceptable, and added bumpers are dangerous due to potential suffocation.
Final Important Mattress Considerations
The last thing you’ll want to ensure is that your child’s body is supported correctly as they sleep and rest on their new mattress. You are only given one spine, and it’s imperative that it’s taken care of from the moment you’re born. Since your little ones aren’t able to advocate for themselves, it is necessary for the adults to provide safe, comfortable and supportive spaces for healthy sleep.
Below is an overview of five of the best pack n play mattresses you can find on the market, as well as the top pick overall.
This mattress has all the features you’re looking for, such as correct sizing, a firm yet comfortable feel, and compact portability. Parents are able to use it at home in the pack n play, or take it on the road and use it on its own as a standalone product. You’ll be surprised and pleased how often this can come in handy if you stash it in the car for naps on-the-go.
• Made out with an organic cotton and polyester blend, so it is both soft to the touch and durable
• Fits perfectly into a pack n play, dimensions are sound with rounded corners
• Comes with a bonus bag with handle, so you can carry it easily
• You may not want a tri-fold option and could prefer a solid unit
• Seams on the tri-fold mat may be uncomfortable without a fitted sheet
The hiccapop mattress is flippable, meaning you can use both sides as your baby ages. One side is firmer and more suitable for infants, and the other side has a more quilted memory foam top for when bigger children are able to roll over and move their heads freely. This memory foam is a CertiPUR-USA high-density product and has an exceptional reputation.
• One of the thicker mattresses available at 3 ¼”, the hiccapop has the support your baby needs with the comfort they like
• Unit is both hypoallergenic and waterproof, with reinforced stitching at the seams so that liquids don’t get through to the inside
• Has washable cover included
• The CertiPUR-USA filling is put through the most rigorous of tests for content and durability
• Fits “most” pack n play units, so be sure to check your exact dimensions
This mattress option is one of the cushiest reviewed here, as it is made of 3 solid inches of fluffy memory foam. It’s definitely an upgrade from the included mattress with a pack n play. Because it is a tri-fold model, you’re able to compactly take it with you on trips or for playdates in case your child needs a nap off-site. Also comes with a simple gray carrying bag for the mattress.
• Ultra comfortable and made of the popular memory foam material
• Made from non-toxic foam, and is BPA- and phthalate-free
• Dimensions make it suitable for most pack n plays, and it has rounded corners for that exact fit
• Removable, washable polyester cover
• Since this mattress is foldable, it has two seams on it, and some people might find that inconvenient or uncomfortable
• Memory foam is not suitable for infants since it is a suffocation risk, therefore this is only for use with older babies
The Dream On Me is a cushy mattress for babies that are just a little older than newborns. Because it is so thick and made of a memory foam material, it can be a suffocation risk for infants unable to roll over or turn their heads. However, for the little ones six months and up, this is an incredibly comfortable option for the pack n play.
• Made from 10% vinyl and 90% foam, the Dream On Me has an antibacterial, waterproof stitching on the seams to keep out moisture, mildew and mold (unlike cotton options)
• The mattress passes all flammability tests without using dangerous and toxic retardants that contain phthlates
• Ideal size and has rounded corners for pack n play accessibility
• This mattress is only suitable for babies six months or older due to its thickness and softness
At 2″ thick, the LA Baby mattress is thin enough for safety purposes while being thick enough for your child’s comfort. The cover is non-toxic and provides a barrier from dust mite infestation, which is good for your baby’s delicate system. The mattress itself is tear resistant and fits conveniently into a standard-sized portable crib.
• The mattress thickness is a nice compromise between safety and comfort
• Comes with antimicrobial and hypoallergenic cover that is also conveniently washable
• Made in the USA and has a one year warranty
• Not as easily portable as some of the other models here since it is not foldable
Our Top Pick Is….
….The hiccapop! This mattress just got high marks in all of the categories that are important. Besides being extremely safe, this model is multi-functional. When the baby is brand new, the parents can use the more suitable, firmer side. Then, as he or she is learning to crawl and able to shift around easier during sleep, you can just give it a flip, and your toddler could sleep on the slightly fluffier side
The hiccapop is made of durable and functional materials, and it’s nice that it has the reinforced seams to keep things from leaking inside. However, if you also have a spill or an accident, you can throw the washable cover into the wash easily. Plus, the whole thing is hypoallergenic, which is an amazing plus when dealing with unpredictable allergens.
Keeping all that in mind, the hiccapop mattress just really shined during its review. You’ll surely find it to be the best pack n play mattress money can buy. Luckily, it’s also super affordable. Enjoy, and sweet dreams, baby!