Table of Contents
- View The Best Baby Crib Mattress Below
- 1. Hiccapop Pack and Play Mattress Pad
- 2. Newton Baby Crib Mattress and Toddler Bed
- 3. Dream on Me Playard Mattress
- 4. Milliard Ventilated Memory Foam Crib
- 5. Milliard Crib Mattress
- 6. Moonlight Slumber Little Dreamer Crib Mattress
- 7. Graco Premium Foam Crib and Toddler Mattress
- 8. Dream On Me Portable Crib Mattress
- 9. Serta Perfect Start Fiber Core Crib
- 10. Delta Children Twinkle Stars Core Crib Mattress
- Baby Crib Mattress Buyers Guide
One of the things expectant parents look forward to the most is picking out their new baby’s crib. Finding the best crib mattress to use with it can sometimes be looked at almost like an afterthought; however, selecting a crib mattress is one of the biggest choices parents will make for their child’s growth and well being. The right decision made here helps ensure a baby has the support necessary for proper bone growth, a hygienic sleep space to support their health, and a lower risk for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
Babies spend the majority of their time sleeping because they are growing and developing at astounding speed. This means their crib mattress is vital to both their growth and safety.
View The Best Baby Crib Mattress Below
1. Hiccapop Pack and Play Mattress Pad
This crib mattress is designed for a playard, so at 26” x 28,” it is bigger than a standard crib mattress. However, it’s designed to fit most pack-n-play models or playards without any gaps.
The mattress is dual-sided. What does that mean? It has an extra firm side to provide the support a baby needs for comfort and safety, and it also has a still firm, but slightly softer side, suitable for toddlers.
It comes with a removable, washable cover that is waterproof, antimicrobial, and hypoallergenic. The cover is lock stitched to provide further mattress protection from moisture damage, dust mites, and bed bugs.
+ Dual-Sided to grow with baby
+ Fits most playards with no gaps
+ Includes washable protective cover
Why We Liked It – Sometimes naps need to happen in the playard, and this mattress is more comfortable than the ones included, without sacrificing safety. Plus, it’s designed to grow with your child.
2. Newton Baby Crib Mattress and Toddler Bed
If you are extra concerned about SIDS risk or have a baby that’s learned to roll over and now refuses to sleep any other way than on their tummy, this is likely the best crib mattress for you. The food grade polymer it’s made from allows the mattress to provide the firm support an infant needs while being 90% air, so they can breathe right through it!
It’s dual-sided to grow with your child into their toddler years. Additionally, it’s completely washable, cover and mattress both, so messy accidents can be cleaned easily.
+ Designed for support while allowing complete air flow
+ Dual-Sided to grow with baby
+ GREENGUARD gold certified
+ Entire mattress can be washed
Why We Liked It – This is one crib mattress where breathable really means breathable! Plus, the entire mattress and cover are washable, so even if wet messes and accidents occur, clean up is simple.
3. Dream on Me Playard Mattress
This is another mattress designed for a playard instead of a standard crib. The mattress should fit most playards, though their sizing is not standardized, so measuring your model is necessary before finding a mattress for it.
The Dream on Me mattress is completely waterproof, including lock stitch binding to further protect it against bacterial, mold, and mildew growth, as well as odor prevention. Additionally, it’s GREENGUARD gold certified, meets all Federal flammability standards, and passes all toxicity, phthalate, and lead tests.
It should be noted, this mattress is not recommended for babies under six months of age.
+ Fits most pack-n-play or playard models
+ Meets Federal flammability standards
+ GREENGUARD gold certified
Why We Liked It – The waterproof cover and lock stitching uses antibacterial and waterproof materials. This makes this an ideal mattress for older babies and toddlers to use in a pack-n-play for naps on the go.
4. Milliard Ventilated Memory Foam Crib
What if you did not choose a dual-sided mattress at first, and now you have a toddler who is tossing and turning all night instead of sleeping? This crib mattress topper is an ideal way to extend the life of the mattress you already have. It’s a 2” thick foam mattress made from 2.5 lb foam and made to fit a standard crib. This means it’s soft enough to provide the additional comfort your toddler needs while remaining supportive and breathable.
It comes with a washable waterproof and hypoallergenic cover and carries a CertiPUR-US certification.
+ 2.5 lb density foam for durability
+ Waterproof and washable, hypoallergenic cover
+ CertiPUR-US certified
Why We Liked It – Sometimes you just need something to make a mattress work for longer, and this is an ideal topper to convert an infant’s cot mattress into one more comfortable for a toddler’s changing needs.
5. Milliard Crib Mattress
For parents who want a dual-sided foam mattress that is CertiPUR-US certified to be low VOC, this is one of the best choices for foam mattresses. It’s constructed from two densities of foam to create a mattress with a firm side for baby and a softer side for the toddler stage. Additionally, its high-density construction means it will hold its shape through years of use.
It comes with a washable, 100% organic cotton, waterproof cover to protect the mattress from the odor, mildew, and mold that can result from spit up, night time leaks, and potty training mishaps.
+ Dual-Sided, with a softer side, to grow with your child
+ Waterproof washable organic cotton cover
+ CertiPUR-US certified
Why We Liked It – Memory foam makes for a comfortable sleep, and this is one constructed of densities suitable for an infant on one side and a toddler on the other to grow with your child. Plus, it is CertiPUR-US certified to be low VOC.
6. Moonlight Slumber Little Dreamer Crib Mattress
Here is one of the best crib mattresses for eco-conscious parents. Not only is this mattress dual-sided to last your baby until they have outgrown their toddler bed, but it is constructed from an eco-friendly foam derived from plant-based sources.
The entire mattress is covered with a medical-grade waterproof material for easy cleanup. This material is sewn with extra tight, flat seams that make it resistant to bed bugs and dust mites. Plus, it’s both GREENGUARD and CertiPUR certified.
+ Dual-Sided to grow with your child
+ Dust mite and bed bug resistant
+ Both GREENGUARD and CertiPUR certified
Why We Liked It – This mattress is constructed of eco-friendly, plant-based foam and is wrapped in medical-grade fabric sewn with flat seams to make it waterproof and resistant to both dust mites and bed bugs.
Sometimes simplicity, and the confidence to back up a product with a 6-year limited warranty, speaks for itself. These foam mattresses ship compressed into a box for delivery convenience and will expand into a foam mattress made to fit all standard cribs and toddler beds at the recommended firmness for infant safety. It comes with a water resistant cover that is removable and machine washable.
It is GREENGUARD gold certified, and does not contain mercury, prohibited phthalates, or lead. Plus, it passes all flammability standards, and it’s constructed from a breathable foam for temperature regulation.
+ Compressed for easy shipping
+ Water resistant, removable and washable cover
+ GREENGUARD gold certified
+ Comes with 6-year limited warranty
Why We Liked It – This choice makes it simple. It’s designed to fit any standard crib and toddler bed, constructed of foam to the firmness recommended for infant safety, and it is GREENGUARD gold certified.
8. Dream On Me Portable Crib Mattress
Choices for portable or mini-cribs can be limited. So we wanted to make sure to include a good one on the list. This mattress is 24” x 38” to fit all standard sized portable or mini-cribs, and it provides a firm sleeping surface, ideal for infant safety. The mattress is encased in a vinyl cover to protect it from moisture-based damage, such as mildew, mold, and odor as well as dust mites and bed bugs.
Also, it is GREENGUARD gold certified, and passes Federal Standard Flammability Standard 16 CFR 1633.
+ Portable or mini-crib option
+ Vinyl cover to protect against odor, mold, and mildew
+ GREENGUARD gold certified
+ 30 day warranty
Why We Liked It – Good portable or mini-crib options are not easy to find, but this one fits. It’s firm, sized to fit standard portable or mini-cribs, GREENGUARD gold certified, and it carries a 30 day warranty.
9. Serta Perfect Start Fiber Core Crib
This fiber core mattress is the ideal firmness for infant safety and is durable enough to last your child until they are ready to say good-bye to their toddler beds. Both the firm side for baby and the toddler side of the mattress feature a waterproof vinyl cover that makes cleaning easy. The toddler side has an additional layer of padding, making it ideal for their changing needs when the time comes. Serta backs up the mattress’ durability with a limited 7-year warranty.
It is GREENGUARD gold certified and also meets and exceeds additional safety standards.
+ Square corners for a secure fit
+ Waterproof vinyl cover makes clean up easy
+ GREENGUARD gold certified
+ Limited 7 year warranty
Why We Liked It – This crib mattress is the correct firmness for a newborn baby, and its square corners ensure it fits standard sized cribs without gaping. Also, it comes with a 7-year warranty.
10. Delta Children Twinkle Stars Core Crib Mattress
This GREENGUARD gold certified mattress also passes a battery of other tests and certifications. It’s sized to fit any standard sized crib or toddler bed, and it’s dual-sided to last your child from birth to a big kid bed. One side has the firmness a baby needs for comfort and safety, and the other has an additional layer of padding for added comfort during their toddler years. Both sides are protected by a waterproof vinyl cover that is stain resistant.
The mattress has square sides to fit without the gaps rounded corners can cause.
+ Waterproof vinyl cover for protection
+ Meets or exceeds CPSIA testing
+ GREENGUARD gold certified
+ Limited 7 year warranty
Why We Liked It – We love a mattress that is so durable it comes with a 7-year warranty. It’s dual-sided to work for both baby and toddler and passes a battery of safety testing. It’s the perfect mattress for a cot.
Baby Crib Mattress Buyers Guide
What is the best mattress for a baby crib?
When looking for the best crib mattresses, everything goes back to safety. Infants spend the majority of their time sleeping to support their rapid physical and mental development, so making sure your baby can get their best and deepest sleep safely is key.
You may be thinking of what you find comfortable in a mattress, but this is not particularly helpful as much of what we adults find comfortable can be dangerous for the baby’s crib. Soft, squishy mattresses, fluffy blankets piled high, and tons of pillows might be ideal for us, but they create suffocation hazards for a baby too young to maneuver themselves away from items obstructing their breathing. You will find most of the things you need to consider when looking at crib mattresses come back to this fact.
One of the first things you want to check is the firmness of any potential mattresses. While it doesn’t need to feel like a rock, a crib mattress for a baby needs to be very firm. I know that sounds uncomfortable, but what they find comfortable differs from what their parents would prefer for themselves due to their stage of development. Have you ever slept on a mattress that’s too soft and woken up with a stiff, sore back due to lack of support? That’s how an adult mattress would feel for an infant.
A firm mattress provides needed support for their developing spine, especially when sleeping on their back, as is recommended by pediatricians to help reduce the risk of SIDS. Plus, as they begin to become mobile, it provides a steadier foundation for their movements, which further reduces the chances of accidents.
Next, you need to consider the mattress size when compared to the size of your crib. The mattress needs to fit snugly into the crib, and the tighter the fit, the better. If you are able to fit two fingers between the mattress and crib railing, you want to find a larger crib mattress.
Why is this important? Infants learn to roll and scoot well before they are past the risk of SIDS, and sometimes they manage to move about in their sleep far more than you would expect. Mattresses that are too small for the beds they are used with can cause a baby to become stuck in the gap between mattress and crib railing. A larger mattress prevents these gaps.
Then there are the materials making up any potential mattresses. They come in many of the same varieties as adult mattresses, though the vast majority are foam and innerspring. Innerspring mattresses make picking one that is firm relatively easy. The more coils or springs it has, the firmer the mattress.
Foam mattresses tend to be a bit softer overall, but there are some good, dense foam mattress options that provide enough support for infants. There are organic crib mattress options using both plant-based foams, organic cotton, or both. These crib mattresses are often more costly than others, but they are hailed as being the best crib mattresses for being low VOC.
No matter which material you choose, you want to check the likelihood it will off-gas VOCs, otherwise known as volatile organic compounds, which can be harmful in a variety of ways, from respiratory irritation to damage of the central nervous system.
While picking an organic crib mattress is a good start, some materials allowed even under the organic banner can still off-gas VOCs. Therefore, it’s good to check if a particular mattress carries Greenguard gold certification, one of the strictest criteria that takes in factors that make infants, children, and the elderly more sensitive to VOCs than adults.
Finally, while it is understandably tempting to shop secondhand or accept a hand-me-down mattress for a crib, this is a poor idea. Mattresses lose firmness over time. While most cot mattresses have an easily cleaned waterproof coating, these can thin or even crack over time, which can lead to increased chances of mold or bacteria growth within the mattress in addition to a higher likelihood of VOC off-gassing.
The chances of a mattress having mold, mildew, bacterial, or dust mite growth within them are even higher for crib mattresses without a waterproof covering of some sort. Plus, safety regulations change frequently based on new research findings, so sticking to new is best for the crib mattress.
What is the standard size of a baby crib mattress?
A standard baby crib mattress will be 27 1/4″ x 51 5/8″ and no thicker than 6 inches. A mini crib, or portable crib, has a standard size of approximately 24″ x 38″ and is available in thicknesses up to 4 inches.
However, while both crib mattress sizes, and the size of cribs themselves, are regulated to standard sizes, the internal measurements of a crib have a “plus or minus” tolerance allowed. This means your crib’s interior can be anywhere from 27 2/3″ x 51 3/4″ to 28 5/8″ x 53″ while staying within the allowances.
A standard crib mattress is supposed to be safe anywhere within these guidelines, but it’s something to keep in mind when searching for your crib mattress. Taking the time to measure the inside of your baby’s crib, or checking the box it came in for these dimensions, can help ensure you make the correct choice. Also, keep the shape of the mattress itself in mind. One with square corners instead of rounded ones will provide a more snug fit, which is ideal for the reasons mentioned in the section above.
If you decide to go with a nonstandard crib, the mattress is required to be included. When going with this option, make sure to research the crib itself and the mattress it comes with thoroughly to make sure both are safe for your child.
Do all crib mattresses fit all cribs?
Both standard cribs and standard crib mattresses are held to sizing guidelines that are supposed to make any mattresses work with any crib. However, not all cribs available on the market are standard sized cribs. If the parents purchased their crib from an antique, thrift, or second-hand store it may or may not be standard sized. The same is true if it was a family heirloom, hand-me-down, a garage sale find, or a custom build.
Make sure to measure the inside of your baby’s crib to ensure proper mattress fit. If the measurements are within 27 2/3″ x 51 3/4″ and 28 5/8″ x 53,” a standard-sized mattress should work while staying within the “no more than two fingers width gap” between mattress and frame rule. However, if your crib interior is smaller or larger than this, you will need to look into nonstandard crib mattress options to ensure a proper fit.
Nonstandard sized or shaped cribs available on the market new are required to include the mattress. In cases such as these, it’s important to research the crib itself and the mattress included in fine detail to ensure it’s properly sized, firm enough, hygienic, and that it meets standards for VOC off-gassing safety.
What is the best and safest crib mattress?
There are several factors to keep in mind when looking for the safest and best crib mattresses, and several of them are quite different from what you might expect. A baby’s needs are not the same as those of an adult, older child, or even a toddler. Parents need to keep comfort, safety, and the inevitability of spit-up and diaper leaks all in mind when making their choice. If you already have the crib frame you plan to use, that can make a difference, as well if it falls outside the standard crib size.
Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is a major concern for parents. The best way to protect your baby from this is by creating a safe sleep environment for them, which all starts with the crib and mattress.
The best crib mattresses are firm. That does not mean uncomfortable, but firm to an adult’s sensibilities. It means hard. An adult would probably find a good crib mattress uncomfortable, but by the same notion, even ignoring the safety hazard, a baby would find an adult’s preferred mattress uncomfortable as well. Why? A baby’s skeleton is composed mostly of cartilage, and their muscles are relatively weak. They need the support of an extremely firm mattress for both safety and comfort.
Let’s look at safety first. What causes SIDS? This happens when something obstructs a baby’s ability to breathe. Firm mattresses keep a baby in a position for optimal breathing when laid on their back, according to doctors’ instructions. Even after a growing baby has gained the ability to roll from back to tummy, which is usually after rolling from tummy to back, a firm mattress gives them the leverage needed to do so.
This can be more difficult on soft mattresses, meaning they may become stuck in a position that makes it harder for them to breathe. Even after they are able to pull up and stand in the crib, having a more stable foundation lowers the risk of accidents by giving them a predictable footing.
Have you ever slept on a bed that’s too soft and woke up with an aching back? That is how a baby would feel after a night on a mattress their parents would find comfortable. Babies need firmness as much for their comfort as safety until their bones have hardened, and they have built up strength in the muscles. This gives them a deeper sleep, and they wake feeling better than they would on a softer one. Purchasing the right crib mattress means a safer, healthier, and happier baby, which is a win, win, win for baby and parents.
Next, consider the materials used to construct mattresses. Like with full-sized mattresses, you have a few options. Crib mattresses come in both innerspring mattresses or foam mattresses. When looking at innerspring mattresses, comparing the firmness can be relatively easy. The more springs, or coils, it has, the firmer the mattress. When considering a foam mattress, density is the thing. The denser the foam, the firmer the mattress.
Some crib mattresses are double-sided. One side is extra firm for infants. The other side is slightly softer for after they grow into a toddler. These are ideal for families looking for a crib and mattress combo that can grow with their child.
Many crib mattresses either have a waterproof layer built into the mattresses themselves with a “breathable” covering of antimicrobial fabric over it, or they are surrounded by a waterproof layer. These are meant to make cleaning and protecting the mattress from spit up, diaper leaks, and other messy accidents, easier.
This waterproof layer can make a crinkly sound as the child grows and begins to move more during the night, but they make cleaning up overnight accidents a matter of stripping the crib sheet off, wiping down the waterproof layer with soap and water, and replacing the sheet.
The mattresses with an internal waterproof layer protect the inside of the mattresses from water damage. The top layer of fabric is much easier for parents to clean than full mattresses would be. However, there will be a wet spot there until it manages to dry.
One last important note.
A breathable mattress is meant to stay cooler and reduce sweating. It does not mean it’s capable of being breathed through, so it is still crucial for parents to lay baby to sleep on their back!
Mattresses for use in a crib are available in a wide range of materials, from organic cotton to plant-based, recyclable polymers and low VOC foams. Some are made exclusively for a baby with the extra firm mattresses they need. Others are made with a firm side for baby and a slightly softer side for when they have grown into a toddler.
Finding the best crib mattress for your baby’s crib is one of the most important decisions parents make for their child. There are many factors to keep in mind, and numerous mattresses to choose from on the market. So it’s one decision where parents should take the time to research every option, a process I hope we have made easier.