Bassinet Buyer’s Guide

by | Bassinet

A Complete Bassinet Buyer’s Guide

When preparing for the arrival of a new baby, one essential item to consider is a bassinet. A bassinet provides a safe and cozy sleeping space for your infant during their early months. However, with various types and features available, choosing the right bassinet can be a daunting task. This comprehensive buyer’s guide will help you make an informed decision and select the best bassinet for your baby’s needs.

Whether you’re a first-time parent or expanding your family, this guide will provide you with the knowledge and insights needed to make the right choice when selecting a bassinet for your little one. From understanding safety standards to evaluating features and budget considerations, you’ll be well-prepared to provide a secure and comfortable sleeping environment for your baby.

Introduction to Bassinets

As expecting parents, one of the first and most crucial decisions you’ll make for your newborn is where they will sleep. Bassinets, with their cozy and compact design, offer a perfect solution for your baby’s early months. In this section, we will explore why bassinets are a popular choice for new parents, compare them to cribs, and discuss safety standards and guidelines to keep your baby sleeping soundly.

Why Choose a Bassinet for Your Baby

Bassinets are specially designed for infants, offering several advantages:

  1. Proximity: Bassinets are small and portable, making it easy to keep your baby close. Having your newborn within arm’s reach is not only convenient for feeding and soothing but also provides peace of mind.
  2. Safety: A well-constructed bassinet provides a secure and enclosed sleeping environment, reducing the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
  3. Coziness: The small and snug space of a bassinet creates a comforting atmosphere for your baby. This sense of security can lead to better sleep.
  4. Convenience: Many bassinets come with wheels, making them easy to move from room to room. This mobility is especially handy for nighttime feedings or when you want your baby to nap in the living room during the day.

Bassinet vs. Crib: Which Is Right for You

While bassinets offer unique advantages, cribs also have their place. Here’s a quick comparison to help you decide which is right for your situation:

  • Bassinet: Ideal for the first few months, providing proximity and portability. Most bassinets have weight limits, so your baby will eventually outgrow it.
  • Crib: Suitable for long-term use, accommodating your child as they grow. Cribs are typically stationary and require a dedicated nursery space.

Safety Standards and Guidelines

When selecting a bassinet, it’s crucial to ensure that it meets safety standards. Look for the following:

  1. JPMA Certification: The Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) certification indicates that the bassinet meets or exceeds safety standards. Look for the JPMA seal on the product.
  2. Sturdy Construction: Ensure that the bassinet is well-built with no sharp edges or small parts that could pose a choking hazard.
  3. Breathable Mattress: The bassinet mattress should be firm and breathable to reduce the risk of suffocation.
  4. Safe Materials: The bassinet should be made from non-toxic materials and finishes. Check for any lead or phthalate content.
  5. Proper Ventilation: The bassinet should have proper ventilation to prevent overheating.
  6. Weight Limit: Follow the manufacturer’s weight limit guidelines and discontinue use when your baby exceeds the limit.

In the sections that follow, we’ll delve deeper into different types of bassinets, key features to consider, and guidelines for choosing the right one for your baby.

Types of Bassinets

When it comes to choosing a bassinet for your baby, you’ll find a variety of options tailored to different needs and lifestyles. Understanding the different types of bassinets will help you select the one that best suits your preferences and requirements. Here are the most common types of bassinets:

  1. Traditional Bassinets

Traditional bassinets are the classic choice for newborns. They typically feature a sturdy, stationary frame with a snug sleeping space. These bassinets may have a canopy or drapery, creating an elegant and timeless look. They are suitable for use in a nursery, alongside your bed, or in any room where you want your baby to sleep. Some traditional bassinets come with storage shelves or compartments for baby essentials.


  • Aesthetic appeal.
  • Sturdy and safe for newborns.
  • Often have storage features.


  • Limited portability.
  • May not be suitable for co-sleeping.
  1. Travel Bassinets

Travel bassinets are designed for families on the go. They are lightweight, portable, and often foldable for easy transport. These bassinets are ideal for travel, whether you’re visiting family, going on vacation, or simply moving around your home. Many travel bassinets can be used as play yards or changing stations, providing versatility for parents on the move.


  • Highly portable.
  • Compact and easy to store.
  • Great for travel.


  • Usually less sturdy than traditional bassinets.
  • Smaller sleeping space.
  1. Co-sleeper Bassinets

Co-sleeper bassinets are designed to attach securely to the side of the parent’s bed, allowing the baby to sleep nearby while maintaining their separate sleep space. This setup facilitates nighttime feedings and bonding without the risks associated with bed-sharing. Co-sleeper bassinets often have adjustable heights to match the height of the adult bed, and they make it easy for parents to reach and comfort their baby.


  • Promotes safe co-sleeping.
  • Convenient for breastfeeding.
  • Easy access to the baby.


  • Limited portability.
  • May not fit all bed types.
  1. Convertible Bassinets

Convertible bassinets are designed to adapt to your baby’s changing needs. These bassinets often transform into other baby furniture, such as changing tables, playpens, or cribs. This versatility allows you to extend the usefulness of the bassinet beyond the first few months, making it a cost-effective choice.


  • Long-term usability.
  • Multiple functions in one.
  • Can save money in the long run.


  • May be bulkier than specialized bassinets.
  • Conversion features may not be as high-quality as dedicated furniture.

Each type of bassinet has its unique advantages and drawbacks. Consider your lifestyle, living space, and intended use when choosing the best type of bassinet for your baby. In the next section, we’ll explore the key features you should take into account when selecting a bassinet, regardless of its type.

Key Features to Consider When Choosing a Bassinet

Selecting the right bassinet for your baby involves more than just the type or design. Several key features should be considered to ensure the safety, comfort, and convenience of your newborn. Here are the essential features to keep in mind:

  1. Bassinet Size and Weight Limit
  • Internal Dimensions: The sleeping area should be spacious enough to accommodate your baby comfortably, but snug enough to create a safe and secure environment.
  • Weight Limit: Every bassinet comes with a specified weight limit. Ensure your baby’s weight falls within this limit to prevent safety hazards.
  1. Portability and Mobility
  • Wheels: If you want the ability to move the bassinet easily from room to room, look for models with wheels. This is particularly convenient for nighttime feedings or naps in different areas of your home.
  • Folding Mechanism: Travel bassinets and some portable models should have a straightforward folding mechanism for compact storage and transportation.
  1. Mattress Quality and Material
  • Firmness: The bassinet mattress should be firm to reduce the risk of suffocation. A soft mattress can pose a danger to your baby.
  • Hypoallergenic and Waterproof: Opt for a mattress with a hypoallergenic, waterproof cover. This feature ensures the mattress is easy to clean and prevents allergens from accumulating.
  1. Safety Features
  • JPMA Certification: Ensure that the bassinet is certified by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) to meet or exceed safety standards.
  • Mesh Sides: Mesh sides improve air circulation and allow you to see your baby while they sleep, reducing the risk of SIDS.
  • Locking Mechanism: Check for a reliable locking mechanism to keep the bassinet securely in place, especially for co-sleeper models.
  • Sturdy Construction: The bassinet frame should be solid and stable, with no sharp edges or small parts that could pose a safety hazard.
  • Adjustable Height: If you’re choosing a co-sleeper bassinet, ensure it has an adjustable height feature to match your bed’s height.
  1. Storage Options
  • Under-Bassinet Storage: Some bassinets come with storage shelves or compartments for baby essentials like diapers, wipes, or clothing. This feature can be quite convenient.
  1. Rocking or Swinging Function
  • Rocking: Many bassinets offer a gentle rocking motion to soothe your baby to sleep. This can be a valuable feature for calming fussy infants.
  • Swinging: Some models have a swinging function that mimics the motion of a cradle.
  1. Canopy or Mosquito Net
  • Canopy: A canopy provides shade and protection from overhead light, making it easier for your baby to nap during the day.
  • Mosquito Net: If you live in an area with mosquitoes or insects, a built-in mosquito net can keep your baby safe and comfortable during outdoor use.

By considering these key features, you’ll be well-equipped to make an informed decision when choosing a bassinet for your baby. Remember that safety is the top priority, so always check for certification and adhere to safe sleep guidelines. In the next section, we’ll discuss how to choose the right bassinet that suits your baby’s needs and your living space.

Choosing the Right Bassinet for Your Baby

Selecting the perfect bassinet for your baby involves assessing various factors that suit your needs and your baby’s comfort. Here are steps to guide you in making the right choice:

1. Determine Your Priorities

Start by identifying your specific needs and priorities. Are you looking for a portable bassinet, that fits in a small space, or has additional features like storage compartments or a rocking motion? Understanding your preferences will narrow down your options.

2. Consider the Bassinet’s Location

Think about where you want to place the bassinet. If you plan to keep it in your bedroom for the first few months, a co-sleeper or bedside bassinet might be a good choice. For a more mobile option, look for a bassinet with wheels.

3. Size and Space

Measure the available space in your home and the area where you plan to keep the bassinet. Ensure that the bassinet fits comfortably without overcrowding the room. Consider whether you need a compact or space-saving model.

4. Safety Standards

Always prioritize safety. Choose a bassinet that complies with safety standards, such as JPMA certification. Ensure that it has a sturdy frame, well-ventilated sides, and no sharp or small parts that could harm your baby.

5. Adjustable Height

If you plan to use the bassinet as a co-sleeper, select a model with an adjustable height feature. This ensures that the bassinet’s sleeping surface aligns with the height of your bed, making nighttime feedings and comfort more convenient.

6. Mattress Quality

Check the firmness and material of the bassinet’s mattress. It should be firm to reduce the risk of suffocation and made of hypoallergenic and waterproof materials for easy cleaning.

7. Portability

Consider how often you’ll need to move the bassinet. If you want the flexibility to transport it from room to room or while traveling, opt for a portable and lightweight design with wheels or a folding mechanism.

8. Rocking or Swinging Function

If you want a bassinet that can soothe your baby to sleep with gentle rocking or swinging, choose a model with this feature. Remember to check the safety of the rocking or swinging mechanism.

9. Budget

Determine your budget for the bassinet. There are options available to fit various budgets, so establish a price range and stick to it. Keep in mind that while a higher-priced bassinet might offer more features, a basic model can still be safe and comfortable for your baby.

10. Reviews and Recommendations

Read reviews and seek recommendations from other parents or trusted sources. Real-world experiences and insights can provide valuable information about the performance and quality of a specific bassinet.

11. Brand Reputation

Choose a reputable brand known for producing safe and reliable baby products. Brands that adhere to safety standards are more likely to provide quality bassinets.

12. Return Policy and Warranty

Check the manufacturer’s return policy and warranty. Having a good warranty can offer peace of mind, and a flexible return policy can be helpful in case the bassinet doesn’t meet your expectations.

13. Aesthetics

While aesthetics aren’t as critical as safety and functionality, you may want a bassinet that complements your home’s decor. Look for a design and color that appeals to your style.

By considering these factors, you can make an informed decision when choosing a bassinet for your baby. Remember that safety is the most important consideration, so always prioritize models that meet safety standards and guidelines.

Safety Precautions When Using a Bassinet

Ensuring the safety of your baby is paramount when using a bassinet. Here are essential safety precautions to follow:

1. Follow Safe Sleep Guidelines

  • Always place your baby on their back to sleep. This reduces the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
  • Avoid using soft bedding, pillows, or stuffed animals in the bassinet, as they can pose suffocation hazards.
  • Use a fitted sheet that’s designed for the bassinet’s mattress.

2. Check for JPMA Certification

  • Choose a bassinet that is certified by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA). This certification ensures that the product meets or exceeds safety standards.

3. Maintain a Firm Mattress

  • Ensure the bassinet’s mattress is firm. A soft mattress can increase the risk of suffocation.

4. Safe Placement

  • Place the bassinet on a flat and stable surface. Avoid uneven or inclined surfaces.
  • Keep the bassinet away from cords, drapes, or blinds to prevent the risk of strangulation.

5. Stay Alert During Assembly

  • Follow the manufacturer’s assembly instructions carefully to ensure that the bassinet is correctly set up and secure.

6. Regular Inspections

  • Periodically inspect the bassinet for any loose or damaged parts. Make sure that all screws, bolts, and connections are tight.

7. Avoid Using Heavily Scented Products

  • Refrain from using heavily scented products around the bassinet, as strong fragrances can irritate your baby’s sensitive respiratory system.

8. Check for Recalls

  • Stay informed about any recalls related to your bassinet model. Regularly check the manufacturer’s website or the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) website for recall information.

9. Supervise Pets

  • If you have pets, be cautious about leaving them alone with your baby in the same room as the bassinet. Even the most well-behaved pets can become curious about a new addition to the family.

10. Never Move the Bassinet With the Baby Inside

  • Always take your baby out of the bassinet before moving it to another location. Even if the bassinet has wheels, it’s safer to carry your baby separately.

11. Keep Siblings Away

  • If you have older siblings, teach them to be gentle around the bassinet and not to climb in or lean on it.

12. Stop Using the Bassinet When Appropriate

  • Most bassinets have weight and age limits. Stop using the bassinet once your baby exceeds these limits or when they can sit up, roll over, or push up on their hands and knees.

13. Follow Manufacturer’s Recommendations

  • Always adhere to the manufacturer’s recommendations and guidelines specific to your bassinet model. These guidelines may include weight limits, age restrictions, and usage instructions.

By following these safety precautions, you can create a secure and comfortable environment for your baby while using a bassinet. Your baby’s safety is the top priority, so be diligent in ensuring that the bassinet is set up and used correctly.

Maintenance and Cleaning Tips for Your Bassinet

Proper maintenance and cleaning of your baby’s bassinet are essential to ensure a safe and hygienic sleeping environment. Here are some guidelines to follow:

1. Regular Cleaning

  • Clean the bassinet regularly to remove dust, dirt, and any potential allergens.
  • Use a damp cloth to wipe down the frame and any hard surfaces. Avoid using abrasive or chemical cleaners.

2. Mattress Care

  • Remove the mattress and cover when needed. Check the manufacturer’s recommendations for cleaning the mattress.
  • If the mattress is waterproof, you can clean it with a mild soap and water solution. Ensure it’s thoroughly dry before reusing it.
  • Use a fitted sheet that’s designed for the bassinet to protect the mattress from spills and messes.

3. Fabric Components

  • If your bassinet has fabric components, such as a canopy or skirt, check the care instructions provided by the manufacturer.
  • Most fabric parts can be removed and washed in a washing machine. Use a gentle cycle and mild detergent. Allow the fabric to air dry.

4. Under-Bassinet Storage

  • If your bassinet has storage compartments underneath, periodically clean and organize this space. It’s a convenient place to keep baby essentials, but it can collect dust and become cluttered.

5. Frame and Structure

  • Inspect the frame and structure of the bassinet for any loose screws, bolts, or damaged parts. Tighten any loose connections.
  • If any parts appear to be damaged beyond repair, contact the manufacturer for replacement parts or consider discontinuing use.

6. Wheels and Mobility Features

  • If your bassinet has wheels or a rocking mechanism, check these features to ensure they function correctly and securely.
  • Lubricate any moving parts according to the manufacturer’s recommendations to maintain smooth operation.

7. Check for Recalls

  • Stay informed about any recalls related to your bassinet model. Visit the manufacturer’s website or the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) website for recall information.

8. Store Properly

  • If you plan to store the bassinet between uses, make sure it’s stored in a clean, dry area to prevent mold or mildew growth.
  • Disassemble the bassinet if necessary and keep it in a storage bag or cover to protect it from dust and debris.

9. Discontinue Use When Appropriate

  • Most bassinets have weight and age limits. Discontinue use once your baby exceeds these limits or when they can sit up, roll over, or push up on their hands and knees.

Always refer to the manufacturer’s instructions for specific cleaning and maintenance guidelines as they may vary by brand and model. Proper care and regular inspections will help keep your baby’s sleeping space safe and comfortable.

Top Bassinet Brands and Models

When it comes to choosing a bassinet for your baby, selecting a trusted brand can provide peace of mind in terms of safety and quality. Here are some of the top bassinet brands and their popular models:

1. Halo

  • Halo Bassinest Swivel Sleeper: This bassinet is known for its unique swivel feature, which allows you to bring your baby closer to your bed. It also has a soothing center with a nightlight, lullabies, and vibration.

2. Graco

  • Graco Pack ‘n Play Playard with Cuddle Cove: While not a traditional bassinet, this product features a removable bassinet with a canopy, changing table, and storage space. It offers excellent value for parents looking for versatility.

3. Fisher-Price

  • Fisher-Price Soothing Motions Bassinet: This bassinet has a dual-mode lighting system, calming vibrations, and gentle swaying motion to help soothe your baby to sleep.

4. Chicco

  • Chicco LullaGo Portable Bassinet: This portable bassinet is designed for easy setup and transport. It provides a comfortable and safe sleeping space for your baby.

5. Arm’s Reach Concepts

  • Arm’s Reach Concepts Mini Ezee 2-in-1 Bedside Bassinet: This co-sleeper bassinet is perfect for parents who want their baby within arm’s reach during the night. It can be attached to the side of the bed for added convenience.

6. Delta Children

  • Delta Children Sweet Beginnings Bassinet: This affordable option offers a comfortable and secure sleeping environment for your baby. It has a canopy, a nightlight, and a calming music module.

7. Graco

  • Graco Dream Suite Bassinet: This bassinet features a reversible bassinet and changer, making it a versatile choice for parents. It also has a canopy with soft toys for entertainment.


  • BabyBjörn Cradle: This sleek and modern cradle is easy to rock by hand or your baby’s movements. It’s designed to provide a safe and cozy sleeping space.

9. Mika Micky

  • Mika Micky Bedside Sleeper: This bedside sleeper attaches securely to your bed, allowing you to have your baby close for nighttime feedings and comfort.

10. Fisher-Price

  • Fisher-Price Rock ‘n Play Sleeper: While not a traditional bassinet, this product is compact and portable, making it a convenient choice for napping and supervised play.

Remember that the best bassinet for your baby depends on your specific needs and preferences. When choosing a bassinet, prioritize safety and ensure it meets recommended standards. Additionally, consider the features and design that align with your lifestyle and sleeping arrangements. Always follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for safe use.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) about Bassinets

1. Is a bassinet necessary for a newborn baby?

Bassinets are not a strict necessity, but they can be very convenient. They provide a cozy and secure space for your baby to sleep during the first few months. They can also be placed in your bedroom, making it easier to attend to your baby during the night.

2. When should my baby transition from a bassinet to a crib?

This transition varies but typically occurs when your baby starts to outgrow the weight or size limits of the bassinet, or when they can roll over, sit up, or push up on their hands and knees. Safety is paramount, so make the move when your baby’s development calls for it.

3. What safety standards should a bassinet meet?

Look for bassinets that meet safety standards established by organizations like the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA). These standards cover factors like mattress firmness, structural integrity, and non-toxic materials.

4. Can I use a secondhand or hand-me-down bassinet?

Using a secondhand bassinet is possible, but you should exercise caution. Ensure that it meets current safety standards and has not been subject to recalls. Inspect it for wear and tear, and replace any damaged or missing parts.

5. How can I keep my baby’s bassinet clean?

Cleaning recommendations vary by model, so always refer to the manufacturer’s instructions. Typically, you can wipe down the frame with a damp cloth, clean the mattress with a mild soap and water solution (if waterproof), and machine-wash any removable fabric parts.

6. Can I use bassinets for twins or multiples?

Some bassinets are designed to accommodate twins or multiples. Look for models with sufficient space and weight capacity, and ensure that they meet safety standards for multiple infants.

7. Are bassinets safe for co-sleeping?

Bassinets designed for co-sleeping can be safe when used according to manufacturer guidelines. These bassinets are designed to attach securely to the side of your bed, allowing you to have your baby close while maintaining a separate sleep surface.

8. Can I use a bassinet for naps during the day?

Yes, bassinets can be used for naps during the day, provided they are in a supervised and safe environment. Always ensure your baby is secure and properly positioned within the bassinet.

9. What are the best practices for choosing a safe mattress for a bassinet?

A safe bassinet mattress should be firm, flat, and fit snugly within the bassinet’s frame. Avoid using soft or overly cushioned mattresses, as they can pose a suffocation risk.

10. What should I do if my baby outgrows the bassinet but is not ready for a crib?

You can transition your baby to a portable crib, playpen, or bedside sleeper that is designed for older infants. Just ensure that the new sleeping arrangement is safe and meets your baby’s developmental needs. 

Remember that safety is paramount when using a bassinet. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and recommendations for the specific model you choose.

Conclusion: Welcoming Your Baby Safely and Comfortably

Choosing the right bassinet for your newborn is a significant step in creating a safe and cozy sleeping environment. The convenience of having your baby close during those early months cannot be overstated, and a well-selected bassinet can provide that peace of mind.

In this comprehensive buyer’s guide, we’ve explored various aspects of selecting a bassinet:

  • The types of bassinets are available, from traditional bassinets to bedside sleepers and co-sleepers.
  • Key features to consider, include safety, comfort, and mobility.
  • Safety precautions to ensure your baby’s well-being while they sleep.
  • Maintenance and cleaning tips to keep the bassinet hygienic and in good condition.
  • Top bassinet brands and their popular models, offer you a range of choices to suit your needs.
  • Frequently asked questions (FAQs) addressing common concerns when it comes to using a bassinet for your baby.

Ultimately, your choice of a bassinet should prioritize safety and comfort. It should align with your lifestyle and sleeping arrangements, whether you prefer your baby close at night or for naps during the day. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and safety standards, and remember that your baby’s safety is paramount.

As you welcome your newborn into your home, may their sleep be peaceful and their dreams be sweet, surrounded by the love and care you provide. Congratulations on this exciting journey of parenthood, and may it be filled with joy, love, and cherished moments with your little one.




  • Ashley Wells

    Your trusted source for product reviews, decor inspiration, and expert tips. Ashley Wells helps you make informed choices and elevate your lifestyle. Discover the best products and decor solutions for your home. Follow Ashley Wells for the latest reviews and trends. Create your ultimate living spaces with her.

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