One aspect of having a new baby that many parents are excited about is picking out exactly where their baby will sleep when they come home. It is one of the most important decisions you can make as a new parent and knowing everything about the best non-toxic co-sleepers is the perfect way to start your search!
Safe Sleep Recommendations for Newborns
Ever hear the saying “sleep like a baby”? Well, the saying holds up for some babies and doesn’t even come close for others! Some babies are great sleepers while others struggle from the beginning requiring a little more work from mom and dad. Either way, the sleep of our little ones is always a topic new parents bond over as, at some point, we tend to have some difficulty.
Thankfully, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has special recommendations for newborn sleep helping us take some guesswork out of being new parents! The AAP recommends that, for the first four to six months, baby sleeps in a bassinet or crib in the same room as you.
Some other very important guidelines the AAP has set includes:
- Always putting baby on their back to sleep
- Using a firm sleep surface
- Avoiding bumpers or soft objects inside the crib
- Room-sharing but not bed-sharing
- Using pacifiers at both nap and bedtime
Even though we have this fantastic list of guidelines to help us out, there are still a few more things to consider when it comes to safe sleep for baby. That is the safety of where baby sleeps.
Types of Rest and Sleep Areas
There are several options for parents when choosing the perfect sleeping area for baby. These can include cribs, bassinets, baskets, and co-sleepers.
Since the AAP recommends that babies sleep in the same room as their parents for the first six months, it may not be feasible to have a crib specifically for baby until later when they have their own nursery. So, looking at smaller options may be the route to go! That means, bassinets and co-sleepers galore!
Of course, you will want to make sure you keep up with safety guidelines as your baby ages and develops. For example, as your baby develops and learns to roll over, you will want to look at switching them over to a crib-like setting rather than a bassinet or co-sleeper. No matter the sleeping area you purchase, make sure to read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully with the stage your baby is in!
What to Look for in a Non-Toxic Co-Sleeper or Bassinet
Whichever bassinet or co-sleeper you purchase, you will want to ensure it is stable enough to support baby with their movements and as they put on more weight.
As you will quickly find, babies have a tendency to move all around the place when sleeping! Odds are, you will wake up and wonder how in the world your little one managed to wiggle themselves into their current position when you so nicely snuggled them up in a swaddle just hours earlier. Since baby can end up in numerous positions, it is important that the sleep area you purchase has breathable mesh sides in the case baby ends up putting his or her face into the side of the bassinet or co-sleeper.
In those early days and even weeks, you may find baby sleeping quite a bit! Having a sleeping area for baby that you can easily move around depending on where you are in your home can be essential. That way, you can make sure baby is nice and safe by being an arms-length away but still have the opportunity to have a little ‘you’ time.
Related Post: The Best Organic Mattresses for Your Crib
Natural fabrics and materials
Since our littles spend so much time sleeping in the first few months, it is important that the fabrics we expose them to are safe. You don’t want them to inhale fabrics treated with chemical flame-retardants when they are peacefully resting!
Along those same lines, whichever bassinet or co-sleeper you buy, you will want to make sure is made of natural materials. Try to avoid sleep areas that won’t expose baby to VOCs, formaldehyde, BPA/BPS, and other toxic chemicals. It can be a lot to think about. However, thinking about the sleeping area itself and the bedding you place inside of it is important!
The Top Non-Toxic Co-Sleepers and Bassinets
This non-toxic co-sleeper has been developed by midwives and doulas and is perfect for napping and lounging around the house!
It’s been created with an organic hemp cover, hypoallergenic polyester-fill insert and a mattress made from 100% wool (a natural fire retardant, therefore not needing the harmful fire retardant chemicals). The Sleepod is also adjustable and the drawstring can be used make the pod smaller. This co-sleeper is suitable for newborns through to 5-7 months.
Ranking number one on our list of non-toxic co-sleepers for a reason, the BABYBJORN Cradle is unbeatable! This co-sleeper comes with breathable sides, lightweight portability, Oexo-Tek certified fabric, and the ability to rock back and forth soothing baby.
The only disadvantage this co-sleeper has is that is contains MDF board below the mattress. The manufacturer claims no formaldehyde has been used in these boards but it is something that toxin-conscious parents should know about!
Based right in California, Venice Child is a company producing modern bassinets and non-toxic co-sleepers for newborns. This co-sleeper sits right at bed level having several height adjustments to ensure baby is safely nestled up against your bed.
Not only is this great for baby feeling close to you, but it is also convenient for mom and her postpartum body. In those early days, recovering from birth can be difficult. This is even more true for those recovering from having a c-section. Pair this recovery with your new little babe waking up throughout the night for feedings, having a co-sleeper with adjustable height is perfect!
This co-sleeper also has mesh sides so you can monitor baby throughout the night (which you will). These sides also help ensure baby receives optimal air circulation keeping them nice and safe!
As for the materials…
This bassinet uses polyester fabric for the outer bassinet and mesh siding and compressed cotton and bamboo fabric for its mattress.
More recently, the Halo Bassinets have become widely popular for expecting parents. The Halo offers breathable mesh sides allowing for adequate air ventilation and an easy way for both mom and dad to see baby through the night. It also has a height adjustment making sure baby is always in line with you keeping them close.
Along with this height adjustment, the base can be tucked under your bed allowing baby to be as close to you as possible without actually bedsharing. Another feature that many new moms in recovery love are the drop-down side wall allowing you to easily get baby in and out of the bassinet without having to get out of bed yourself!
Now, materials. While BPA-free, there are some downsides that parents do not necessarily love. The Halo does contain polyester and polyurethane foam. Though, the manufacturer claims no flame retardants are used in any of their products. This should give peace of mind to the parents choosing this option.
However, there is an organic bassinet mattress you can buy through Halo as well. This option, along with the amazing benefits this bed has, is why it made the list of our favorite non-toxic co-sleepers!
What? Bassinet and crib! You read that right. The Babyletto Hula can be used as a bassinet and be converted to a crib.
Want more? Well… you got it!
Later, when you are finished using both the bassinet and crib, this amazing product can be transformed into a toddler bed.
This miracle bed is made of New Zealand pine wood and plywood with finishes, that are low-VOC, lead-safe, and phthalate-safe. Notice, this bed is not free of these substances but rather held at a safe level. Thankfully, the Hula is Greenguard Gold Certified giving hope to parents that love this option for their little one.
By far, the Arm’s Reach Co-Sleeper has been a favorite of many for years upon years. Why? This co-sleeper actually attaches to your bed. There are very few like it and at the price point this co-sleeper rests at, it is a steal!
If you are, at any point, worried about materials used for this sleeper or its mattress, you have the option of purchasing a mini organic mattress for the Arm’s Reach. This can provide a lot of peace for parents choosing this option!
Another amazing option on this list of non-toxic co-sleeper is the Babybay Bedside Sleeper. This co-sleeper attached right to your bed providing proximity and stability. The bed is made with beechwood and water-based no-VOC (or low-VOC) paints making it one of the safest options for your little one as well.
What many parents like about this co-sleeper is the fact that it is made out of wood. This is a nice alternative to the Arms Reach Co-sleeper as many parents prefer to avoid plastic. Of course, this comes with a higher price tag. Though, it is a great investment as it keeps baby close promoting both bonding and breastfeeding in those early months of life.
Sleeping Safely and Soundly
Finding the perfect sleep environment for your new baby is essential. Non-toxic co-sleepers can be found easily and some even at great affordable prices. Making a small investment now makes a large investment for your child’s future!