A good quality baby crib mattress not only helps a child sleep cozy through the night but also helps promote healthy growth and ensures safety too. Babies and toddlers spend more than half of their first five years of life in a sleep environment of some sort. Generally, newborn babies tend to sleep an average of 16 hours a day, and children aged 3-5 years sleep an average of 11-13 hours. For this reason alone it’s obvious that their surroundings and bedding should be second to none.
There is an abundance of toddler mattress brands and products available on the market but choosing the right one can be pretty daunting to say the least. That’s why we have chosen and shortlisted the top rated for you. See below for general information and crucial buying guide, plus our chosen top 5 reviews and summary of the best crib mattress for your baby.
Top 5 Comparison Table
|Sealy Soybean Foam-Core||View Price →|
|Moonlight Slumber Little Dreamer||View Price →|
|Colgate Eco Classica III||View Price →|
|Simmons Kids Beautyrest Beginnings||View Price →|
|Naturepedic Organic Cotton Classic||View Price →|
Things To Consider When Buying
When adults are looking to buy we most commonly look for one that provides comfort, support, and possibly pain relief. We often forget about safety when it comes to our own bedroom purchase. However, when choosing for children, safety is the one thing that we cannot neglect. Weighing up which baby crib mattress to buy is probably one of the most important nursery decisions you’ll make when it comes to safety and well being. The below factors are crucial for anyone in the market for a baby mattress.
– Mattress and Crib Size
Size is extremely important; in fact the United States government has regulated the standard crib mattress size to ensure safety for babies, and peace of mind for parents.
The dimensions of your new baby mattress depend on the interior dimensions of the crib itself. According to the United States Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC), the interior crib dimensions are defined to be that of 28 ± 5⁄8 inches width x 52 3⁄8 ± 5⁄8 inches length. The actual mattress size must be a minimum of 27 1/4 inches width x 51 1/4 length. If you own a very old baby crib it’s worth checking the interior dimensions because it was probably manufactured before regulations were set and could potentially be at risk.
The gap between the mattress and crib sides can pose a serious risk of suffocation which is why a gap of no more than 1.25″ should be present between the edge of the mattress and the frame. Some places you will read this as “no more than two fingers” but this is not accurate advice, 1.25″ is the correct measurement. The depth or thickness of a U.S compliant standard crib mattress size can be no more than 6″ from top to bottom when lain out flat.
Lastly, one common thing that often leads to confusion is the difference between toddler mattress and baby crib mattress. The truth is there is no difference; in terms of size and compatibility they are one and the same. So for example, if you have a 3 in1 or 4 in 1 convertible baby crib, once baby is ready to transition from crib to toddler bed, the same one can be used.
– Firmness Recommendation
The CPSC recommends using a firm, flat surface to reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). If a surface is too soft it can create depressions and increases the risk of of suffocation. Consumer Reports suggests this test: “Press on the mattress in the center and at the edges. It should snap back readily and should not conform to the shape of your hand”.
– Compliance Standards
All crib mattresses must comply to 16 CFR 1632 and 1633 federal flammability standards. If buying one with foam, it should be CertiPUR-US® certified, which verifies the polyurethane foam inside meets standards for content, emissions, and durability, and has been analyzed by independent, accredited testing laboratories. The GREENGUARD certification is also worth taking note of as many products will advertise this; it “gives assurance that products designed for use in indoor spaces meet strict chemical emissions limits, which contribute to the creation of healthier interiors.” When it comes to buying an organic mattress, the best way to tell if it’s truly organic is by checking whether it is certified by the GOTS. Although there are many GOTS approved certifiers throughout the world, the largest certifier in the US is OTCO.
– Price Range
The price all depends on the quality and type you opt for. Generally, the cheap, thinner foam mattresses are in the low budget range. The better and denser models will cost a little more. Innerspring models are the more popular option and fall in the mid range. Organic mattresses are slightly pricier but for good reason and they will be the most expensive type.
Types Of Crib Mattresses
There are three main types of crib and toddler bed mattress that you need to know about which are Foam, Innerspring, and Organic:
The foam crib mattress is made of polyurethane. It still remains a very popular choice for parents and is generally cheaper than innerspring or organic options. Like other types these are also available in a variety of different depths, the most popular being between 3 and 6 inches. They are also the lightest of the three options which makes cleaning baby mess and changing the sheets an easier task. Most polyurethane models out there weigh less than the innerspring but this is good; think about how many times you’ll be cleaning it or changing the sheets. A typical polyurethane baby mattress weighs approximately 7 – 11 pounds.
Although an innerspring baby mattress is usually more expensive than the polyurethane counterpart, this still remains a hugely popular option. The firm level of support provided by the coils (springs) is great for orthopedic support and safety; plus innerspring is one of the most popular choices for full size mattresses so parents tend to stick with what they have experience with. Comfort and support is measured in the number of coils inside. Common coil numbers are between 50 – 200; the more springs inside mean more cost, but this isn’t the only way to measure firmness. Wire thickness, if stated in the product description is a handy way to measure firmness level. A lower gauge means thicker wire, which is stronger and therefore firmer. For best results look for one with 150+ coils and a gauge of 15.5 or lower.
When it comes to price, over innerspring and foam, the organic crib mattress is usually the most expensive, however there is good reason for the higher price. These are the healthiest available as the 100% organic material (usually cotton) eliminates potentially harmful chemicals and allergens. Of the many different materials used in foam mattresses, some can potentially be harmful to your child, especially if they are prone to allergies. Considering your child will be in close contact with the surface of the mattress and its contents on a daily basis for some years, it’s important to consider the potential long term hazards of using traditional polyurethane types instead of the healthier organic mattress.
Crib Mattress Reviews
Sealy Soybean Foam-Core
If you haven’t heard of Sealy, their mattresses and pads were voted America’s Best for Baby winning the Women’s Choice Award in 2013 and 2014. This Soybean model is an award winning addition to their portfolio. Although it’s not double sided like others in the toddler mattress reviews here, it offers a firm yet comfortable sleeping surface for kids by way of a high density core with added cotton cushioning for balance.
The pearl embossed cover is 100% waterproof and stain-resistant. The hypoallergenic foam core is CertiPUR-US® certified made with soybean oils which is the healthier option to petroleum based alternatives.
It features a square cornered design for added safety and quality of fit; it passes ASTM standards and is GREENGUARD Gold certified. The Soybean Foam Core crib mattress is a valid choice for anyone looking to buy a quality product, and definitely gets a thumbs up from us.
Moonlight Slumber Little Dreamer
This 5″ thick beauty is one of the best rated in our top 5 reviews. The CertiPUR-US® certified model is free of vinyl, polyethylene, PVC, phthalates and lead. It’s a double sided mattress which will last from early days well into toddler years due to an extra firm infant side, and when flipped over, a lesser firm toddler side.
It has dropped side-stitched seams, is hypoallergenic, waterproof and weighs a mere 10.5 lbs. Some of our verified owners of this baby mattress say the square and cornered edges of this model provide an excellent snug fit into the crib so there are no worries about unsafe gaps. This is not a cheap crib mattress, but you really do get the quality and safety you pay for with this one.
Colgate Eco Classica III
The Atlanta based team have been specializing in the baby bed mattress field for over half a century, so it’s no wonder their product appears in our top 5 comparison. The Eco Classica iii is a GREENGUARD certified orthopedic style double sided mattress.
The dual firmness offers a very firm support for infants on one side, and when flipped over has a softer yet firm comfort layer for toddlers. The CertiPUR-US® certified core is plant based which means the healthier plant oils substitute the petroleum-based oils for less harmful air emissions and no nasty off-gassing odors.
At a lightweight 9.3 lbs, it’s wrapped in a certified organic cotton cover with a waterproof backing, which puts healthy cloth closest to baby and the waterproof backing lets nothing seep in. This is an all round very healthy option for parents keen to keep their child in a natural sleep environment.
Simmons Kids Beautyrest Beginnings Sleepy Whispers
Another big American contender who seem to keep providing some of the best crib mattresses time after time; the Beautyrest Beginnings Sleepy Whispers is no exception.
The innerspring double sided design boasts 231 pocketed coil springs for even support for your baby or toddler; one side provides ideal firmness for newborns and the flip side offers a layer of convoluted foam for accommodating growing toddlers.
It comes GREENGUARD Gold and CertiPUR-US® certified which ensures this product is ideal for a healthier indoor environment. It is hypoallergenic, non-toxic, water resistant, and the natural cotton fire protection wrap has no chemicals. This one has everything you could ask for at a great price too.
Naturepedic Organic Cotton Classic
This is another top quality product from one of the leading manufacturers in the organic mattress field. They are a GOTS certified manufacturer who also meet the strictest GREENGUARD certification standards for eliminating chemical emissions.
This particular baby crib and toddler bed mattress has won numerous awards for providing a natural, healthy and comfortable sleep environment. The No Compromise Organic Cotton Classic Seamless 150 is double sided, with a firmer infant side, and flippable softer side for older children.
It has seamless waterproof edges, 150 coils, edge support, 100% organic cotton throughout, and a firm easy-to-clean non-toxic waterproof surface. Again this is not a cheap mattress compared to foam and innerspring alternatives, but for an organic option this definitely sets the standard.
Once again our conclusion has brought us to a tough decision point. Our findings from the recent baby mattress reviews have made it difficult to choose a single best crib mattress so we have decided to conclude with our top two favorites.
The best rated are two different types, one being traditional polyurethane foam (Moonlight Slumber Little Dreamer) and the other being organic (Sealy Soybean Foam-Core). One is double sided (the former) whilst the latter is not, but don’t let that put you off. They both offer adaptive comfort, longevity and value, they have passed stringent testing conditions, and they are approximately the same price. However the real difference is that one is made of organic plant based foam, and the other isn’t.
If we really had to choose one or the other, to ensure s baby’s maximum health and well-being, in this case it would have to be the Sealy Soybean. This is because the Soy based foam-core is natural, non toxic and healthy material, creating a perfect sleep environment which reduces the risk of exposure to any type of chemicals and lowers the risk of allergy. The cotton wrap under the waterproof cover serves as a natural cushion for baby, whilst the airflow pockets keep things cool and hygienic. There is good reason why Sealy baby mattresses were voted America’s Most Recommended four years in a row by the Women’s Choice Awards.
That said, we aren’t against traditional foam in anyway, which is why the Moonlight Slumber Little Dreamer is joint top. People have been using foam crib mattresses for decades, they provide superior orthopedic support and comfort, and there is a price range to suit everyone.
When it comes to deciding on which is the best, you really do have to consider all the options, features and products out there. What suits you may not be a requirement for others, but hopefully our crib mattress reviews will be helpful towards making the best choice for your baby.