For a lot of parents-to-be, the excitement of a new addition begins when they’ve picked out the crib and set it up in baby’s bedroom.
Yes, the crib you choose matters. But, the crib mattress your baby sleeps on is actually a little more important during the first few months of life than many people realize.
The right crib mattress is vitally important. It’s part of the fight against Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
Along with the American Association of Pediatrics (AAP) recent recommendation to avoid crib bumpers if at all possible, there are recommendations for the mattress itself. It should be firm, covered tightly with a sheet, and you should avoid all soft toys and furnishings during sleep time.
Choosing a Crib Mattress:
For the best tips on shopping for crib mattresses, Consumer Reports has a fantastic buying guide. And, we’ve taken the guesswork out of finding the best options on the market today by compiling a list of the best crib mattresses on the web. We’ve got everything you could possibly need right here.
This crib mattress offers more support and strength than your average foam mattress; it also has 231 pocketed springs to make that happen. It’s waterproof, holds the relevant certifications, and converts to a toddler bed when it’s time.
Some users report problems with the stitching on this (otherwise awesome) crib mattress.
On the surface, this crib mattress seems as if it should hold the top spot on our list of Faves. Despite costing a little more, it offers all the same benefits and outshines the top spot in a few areas. But, there have been reported issues with the stitching on some of these mattresses – and that’s problematic.
Now, it doesn’t happen to everyone and for many the incredible fire standards and the overall safety-oriented construction of this mattress far outweighs the need to be gentle with it, but it’s not for everyone. You will need to make the decision for yourself.
What’s it made of? On the inside, there are layers of pocketed coils and foam – plus the 100% cotton fire barrier. There are 13 gauge coils, 231 pocketed coils, and the whole thing is wrapped in a medical-grade, waterproof, woven cover. Basically it’s luxury you might not even find in your own bed.
What are the best features? While young babies aren’t really going to notice the difference between pure foam and coils in their mattresses, you might. And we love the combination as presented here. But, it’s really a matter of being the perfect tension for both infants and toddlers (simply flip the mattress over) that makes this so useful. The ability to meet safety standards is just what you would expect from the brand.
Will it fit the crib? It measures 52 x 27.5 x 6 x 52”. That makes it a little taller than the standard 5”, so the sheets should be quite tight. That’s a good thing for both appearance and safety. But, it also weighs 19.4 pounds which is quite heavy for a crib mattress. As you would expect, that has everything to do with the springs.
How should you care for it? The covering is waterproof and offers the same sort of protection you’ll find in hospitals. You should expect to simply wipe it down with a damp cloth and be done with that. Nice, right?
Are there any certifications, warranties, or awards? It holds GREENGUARD GOLD and CertiPUR-US certifications – which you should expect for the price. And, there’s also a limited lifetime warranty. Given the prevalence of the company throughout the world, you shouldn’t expect any hassles with customer service.
Will it break the bank? Not really. Sure, it’s MSRP of $174 is a great deal more than our top fave, but you should expect to pay about $140 for it. Given that it offers coils as well as foam, converts perfectly to a toddler bed, and has all the safety certifications you want, it’s really not a bad deal at all – and the best if you want coils along with the foam.
This is one of the lightest foam mattresses out there (which makes changing sheets a swift process) – and it holds all the certifications you would want for your baby. The organic cotton cover makes this memory foam comfortable.
The waterproof cover isn’t removable. And, there were reports of rip-offs entering the market for awhile, so you need to inspect yours closely.
This crib mattress is made from certified plant materials. More than safe, it’s easy to work with because it’s so light. Changing the sheets hardly requires an extra set of hands – you should even be able to do it with babe in arms. The fire-retardant properties are exactly what you would expect.
It’s also convertible with a different firmness on each side so you can move it to the toddler bed when it’s time for that milestone. Plus, it’s all wrapped in a waterproof cover. So what’s the drawback? The price is a little higher than we would like, but more than that, it’s the number of rip-offs that users have received. While you can always return it for an original, you want to get it right the first time. But if you do get the right mattress the first time out, you can bet you’ll be happy with it.
What’s it made of? It’s a full foam mattress made from plant-based materials. The entire inner is wrapped in a certified organic cotton cover with a waterproof backing. If you choose this crib mattress, just double check the cover and the smell as soon as you receive it.
What are the best features? In addition to the plant-based materials and meeting the fire safety standards, it’s dual sided so it will transform into a comfortable toddler bed when the time comes. Of course, the waterproof cover is always a plus too.
Will it fit the crib? The dimensions of this mattress are 51.7 x 27.5 x 6”. Now, that’s a little shorter than normal, but it’s also a little thicker than most. So be sure to measure your crib before ordering. It will work with standard cribs, but if you have a bed that’s an inch longer than you should probably move along as the gap may be too big. For reference, it weighs a mere 9.3 pounds which is actually very light for a mattress, foam or otherwise.
How should you care for it? As with the best crib mattresses, this one just needs mild soap and warm water with a damp cloth. The cover isn’t removable, but you shouldn’t need to worry about that.
Are there any certifications, warranties, or awards? It holds both the CertiPUR-US and the GREENGUARD GOLD certifications that you would expect. There’s also a lifetime limited warranty which is something else you would expect from the brand.
Will it break the bank? The MSRP is $220 and you’ll pay a little more than $200 for it. Really that’s not bad for a crib mattress. But, at the same time, it falls short of our top fave in a few spots – and that’s mostly because of the price.
You’ll feel the difference in this organic mattress. The seams (of course there are seams) are waterproof which makes this about as seamless as you’ll get. It’s rather water-resistant and about as non-toxic as you can get.
Not only is it very pricey, but it doesn’t always fit standard-size cribs.
Forget about the price just for a second. This crib mattress is pure quality. It’s got the certifications that will put your mind at ease, from the organic materials it uses to its flammability standards. Plus, there’s the combination of foam and coil materials on the inside. Really, it’s natural, safe, and comfortable.
Now, let’s go back to the price. It’s three times more expensive than our top fave which can be difficult to swallow. And add to that the fact that some users report difficulty fitting it into standard-size cribs. That’s a blow for most folks – but there is a money-back guarantee that will help ease your fears as long as you’ve left yourself enough time before baby arrives.
What’s it made of? This is a combination of foam and spring inners. And, it’s made of 100% cotton on the inside which should ease your mind when it comes to safety. On the outside, the covering is made from food-grade polyethylene. As for the springs, the 150 coil innerspring mattress also features 13 gauge coils and a 9 gauge border wire for ultimate firmness.
What are the best features? This is as close as you will get to an organic crib mattress that really does what it says and remains comfortable for your baby. The combination of foam and spring makes this exceptionally comfortable and it features a dual firmness so it can move to the toddler bed when it’s time. Indeed, it will far outlast that time too.
Will it fit the crib? This crib mattress measures 52 x 27.8 x 6”. That should be standard, if a little on the tall side, but there are those that find it’s a little too short for their cribs. Make sure you measure or fit it before even pulling it out of the plastic. Also, be aware that this mattress is a little heavy at 20 pounds, but it won’t break your back.
How should you care for it? Wipe it down with a damp cloth. That’s all you’ll ever need to do – considering how much cleaning work goes into everything else your baby needs, this will seem like a breeze.
Are there any certifications, warranties, or awards? You get a lifetime warranty and there’s also a 30-day money-back guarantee. In addition to the GREENGUARD Select certification, it’s also GOTS-certified. In case you’re wondering, that stands for Global Organic Textile Standard and it means you can truly expect the materials to be what they claim.
Will it break the bank? It’s a big ask for many parents to spend $300 on a mattress for an infant. For many, the pros well outweigh the cons, but that doesn’t make it any cheaper – just more valuable. If you can afford it, you’ll probably want to do it.
This crib mattress is vinyl, polyethylene, PVC, phthalate and lead-free. It’s also waterproof and offers two levels of firmness (one on each side) so it can be moved to a toddler bed without a struggle.
If you use it for many years, you will need to start worrying about it caving in around the middle. Fortunately, most children outgrow these mattresses long before then.
When you care about the environment almost as much as your baby, you’ll need to consider this mattress. Now, it’s not the cheapest at $200, but the extra safety features that are environmentally friendly are worth it. Better still, this mattress features one side with a firmness meant for infants while the other side is a little more relaxed for the toddler bed. Nice, right?
What’s it made of? The high-density foam is medical grade and PVC and vinyl-free so you can rest as well as your baby. The cover is water and stain resistant without any additional spray-on chemicals.
What are the best features? It’s hypoallergenic and totally avoids a lot of dangerous chemicals. Made in the USA, the foam is medical-grade and includes a woven fire barrier without any spray-on chemical additives. Basically, it's as organically friendly and safe as you’re going to get. The dual-firmness feature means this is likely to live for a long time in your home.
Will it fit the crib? It measures 27.5 x 52 x 5” and will likely fit just about any crib in the United States. It weighs 10.3 pounds which is just about right for foam mattresses (those with coils tend to weigh more).
How should you care for it? It’s remarkably simple to wipe down with a damp sponge. Remember not to flip the mattress; the dual sides make it possible to reduce the firmness for toddlers, but you don’t want to do that until your baby is old enough.
Are there any certifications, warranties, or awards? You’ll get both the CertiPUR-US certification as well as the GREENGUARD GOLD certification. That said, it doesn’t have all the awards our top Fave can claim.
Will it break the bank? At about $200, this isn’t exactly a cheap crib mattress. (It’s also not the most expensive.) You will need to think about whether it fits into your budget or not, but if you want to be as green as you can, it's well worth the investment.
It’s both durable and lightweight with a high-density thermo-bonded fiber core. The vinyl cover wipes clean quickly and it’s both phthalate and lead-free.
It doesn’t have a separate toddler side of the mattress. And a few users have reported that their mattresses are closer to 49” than 52.5”.
If you’re wondering how a crib mattress that retails for $60 can find itself competing with those that sell for $100-200, you’re not alone. We’ve been surprised by the way this budget crib mattress competes with the big boys. It meets all the requirements you would expect (lead-free, fire-safe, and more), but it does it at a fraction of the price.
How? Well it does appear that there may be a slight problem with quality control. A few users report their mattress being too short (which is a safety concern), and yet others have reported a smell indicating mold (a serious health concern). But, when it’s right, you’ve just scored a mattress that will make it through the toddler bed at a fantastic price. You will need to double check your mattress as soon as you receive it; take responsibility early on and you should be golden.
What’s it made of? It’s a thermo-bonded fiber foam covered with vinyl. That outer layer makes it resistant to smells and stains. The cover has a zip in case you want to remove it for washing, but it is waterproof so you may not need that.
What are the best features? It meets the federal flammability standards without additional, harmful chemicals. It’s also GREENGUARD GOLD certified. And then there’s the price.
Will it fit the crib? Okay, this is where you need to be a little careful. Though it should measure 52.5 x 27.5 x 5.5”, a few users have reported their crib mattress to be a little smaller. That’s not across the board; just some. But, you will need to be a little careful.
How should you care for it? A wipe-down should be all you need, but you can remove the cover if you really feel the need.
Are there any certifications, warranties, or awards? We like the GREENGUARD GOLD certification. That’s a big deal. But, you shouldn’t expect a lot more from a crib mattress at this price point.
Will it break the bank? The MSRP is $66, and you should find it on Amazon for a few dollars less. That makes this the least expensive crib mattress on our list. And, it’s really not a bad mattress for the price. It’s safe and easy to maintain. You may find yourself wondering why you should pay more.
American farmers are responsible for the soybean oils used to create this pearl-embossed mattress. It’s stain resistant, waterproof, safe, and a winner of multiple awards.
Watch out for the compression of the edges over time.
You kind of have to fall in love with an inexpensive crib mattress made from high-density soybean foam. At least, we’ve fallen in love with it. In addition to plenty of certifications, this award-winning mattress doesn’t add extra chemicals and will hold up to 60 pounds so you can use it for years to come.
We appreciate that this crib mattress is phthalate and flammability compliant without the use of additional (and toxic) fire-retarding chemicals. We also like the circulation pocket that does its job without the extra side vents that can pose some hazards. All in, it’s difficult not to choose this mattress for your baby.
It’s highly recommended by the folks at Baby Bargains and those over at The Sleep Judge (this review will tell you everything you ever wanted to know and more). If you’re more of visual person, you may want to check out this short YouTube video that explains the features at play.
What’s it made of? Rather than the petroleum-based mattresses that were once a norm, this one is made from soybean oils (grown in the United States, mind you). Now, to be sure, there are other elements at play here, so it’s not 100% eco-friendly, but it’s totally safe for your child. It’s a high-density foam that resists sagging and continues to provide firm support for many years.
What are the best features? Not only is this stain-resistant, it’s also waterproof. And what parent doesn’t love that? It has plenty of healthy, green certifications – including indoor air quality and low chemical emissions. Plus, the entire cover and binding are resistant to moisture which means that unhealthy little allergens aren’t going to stick to this mattress. And, the airflow pocket makes the circulation safe without those metal side vents. And then there are the square corners.
Will it fit the crib? The actual measurements are 51.6 x 27.2 x 5” so it should fit just about any standard size crib, but you should always take measurements. A little gap can make a big difference to the health and safety of your child. It weighs 8.3 pounds, which isn’t bad at all. And, it can handle weights up to 60 pounds, which means you can use it as a toddler bed too.
How should you care for it? You should be able to wipe this clean with mild soap and water. But, you can always use a baby wipe too. You won’t need an extra mattress cover. As long as you care for it regularly, it should outlast your needs.
Are there any certifications, warranties, or awards? In case you’re wondering, this is where this mattress really, really outshines the competition. The lifetime warranty (workmanship and materials) begins on the date of purchase. It’s held a Woman’s Choice Award every year since 2013 (well, all Sealy crib mattresses have the title). It’s also been voted America’s Best Brand for Baby. And, it holds both CertiPUR-US and GREENGUARD Children & Schools certifications.
Will it break the bank? You have to love that you can get all of these features for just over $100. At least, we love that. Sure, it’s not the cheapest on the market, but it’s far from the most expensive option too. We think it’s definitely a value for the money – especially if you move it to a toddler bed for the first couple of years.
Katie’s Cleveland proud; but she’s also lived in Australia, Switzerland and now stays in South Africa. That’s a roundabout way of saying she can’t sit still; she’s always moving, always busy.
She has a BA in International Relations from Kent State University and work towards a Masters in Human Rights. She speaks French, is learning German and used to dream in Spanish. For years, Katie worked as a producer on fashion and advertising shoots before she realized her passion was the written word.
Katie’s far more interested in guy’s gear than women’s, except she has a wardrobe brimming with little black dresses. She drinks her beer out of the bottle and is raising her two boys to be better men.