How Many Mattresses Should A Crib Have

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10 Crib Mattresses to Help Your Baby Sleep Safe and Soundly

Here’s hopingeveryonewill snooze through the night.

Newborns spend most of their time sleeping, so the crib mattress is one of the most important purchases you’ll make as a new mom or dad (no pressure, right?). First and foremost, it needs to be supportive and made with safe materials. On top of that, it should be easy to clean for inevitable accidents and have dual firmness if you want to continue using it when your baby becomes a toddler.

The Good Housekeeping Institute scientists, engineers, and parenting experts review baby gear of all kinds, with a big emphasis on sleep-related products like cribs, swaddle blankets, sleep sacks and more. We’ve picked the top crib mattresses ahead that offer something for everyone, no matter what your preferences are for your baby’s crib. But first, here’s what to consider as you shop for a crib mattress:

What is the best type of mattress for a baby?

The best mattress for a newborn is one that’s extra firm; in fact, it should be so hard that as an adult, you can’t imagine it possibly being comfortable to sleep on. When the baby is about a year old, they can have a slightly softer (yet still firm) surface to sleep on. Many crib mattresses are reversible with infant and toddler sides so you can use them same one for several years.

Just like the inner materials in an adult mattress, for crib mattresses, you’ll commonly choose between an innerspring or foam.Innerspring mattresseshave steel coils to make it sturdy (the more coils, the more supportive it’ll be), whilefoam mattressesare usually made of dense yet lightweight polyurethane foam. Foam mattresses safe for your child to sleep on as long as they’re firm enough. Lastly, to make certain that you’re not exposing baby to harmful levels of off-gassing VOCs, check that the mattress is GreenGuard gold certified, which means the product has been reviewed to ensure low emissions.

How tight should a crib mattress fit?

There should be no gaps between the mattress and the crib sides. If you can fit more than two fingers between the sides of the crib and the mattress, it’s too small and therefore poses a risk to your child. The crib sheets also need to fit securely enough that your baby can’t pull the edges up. An infant’s crib should have nothing else in it: no pillows, blankets, stuffed animals, or other toys. There also shouldn’t be anything hanging over the crib that baby can pull down.

One more safety tip to keep in mind: when it comes to crib mattresses, it’s best to buy new instead of used. A used one may not be as firm, can have mildew or bacteria growth, and may not be up-to-date with the latest safety regulations.

Here are the best crib mattresses you can buy for your baby:

How to buy a crib mattress

The lowdown on crib mattresses

A good mattress not only makes bedtime cozier – it supports your growing baby and keeps her safe. Consider cost, comfort, and durability, as your baby will probably sleep in a crib for up to 3 years.

Types of mattresses

Foam mattressesare generally the lightest option. These are available in a variety of thicknesses, usually between 3 and 6 inches. Look for foam mattresses that are firm, on the heavier side, and resilient when you press your hand on them. Too soft a surface can conform to a baby’s shape and create a risk of suffocation and a sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) hazard.

Innerspring mattressesare coils covered with foam, padding, and fabric.

Better-gauge steel and higher-quality cushioning is heavier and more expensive, as well as firmer and more durable.

Organic mattressesare made with all-natural or organic materials, including cotton, wool, coconut fibers, food-grade polymers, plant-based foam, and natural latex. These mattresses can be innerspring, foam, or other – it’s hard to classify a mattress stuffed with coconut-husk fibers.

Organic crib mattresses can be expensive, but some people say the peace of mind is worth the price. They contend that chemicals and industrial compounds used in standard mattresses – flame retardants known as PBDE (polybrominated diphenyl ethers), vinyl, and polyurethane foam, for instance – emit toxic gases, and that the substances used to make mattresses could harm babies. Others say materials like latex can produce an allergic reaction in infants.

As researchers continue to analyze issues of toxicity, advocates for going organic point out that if these chemicals could be harmful, the safest thing to do is to buy a crib mattress that doesn’t use them.

“Breathable” mattresses, made of materials that are supposed to allow a baby to breathe freely even if his or her face is pressed up against it, are getting more popular. Experts haven’t yet weighed in on their efficacy.

What to look for when buying

The right size:A mattress needs to fit snugly in the crib, with no space between the side of the mattress and the crib frame. If there’s a space, the mattress is too small and could be a suffocation and entrapment hazard. The size of both crib mattresses and cribs is standardized by the federal government, but due to slight variations in each, not every mattress will fit perfectly in every crib.

Firmness:The firmer the crib mattress the better (mattresses designed for older children and adults may not be firm enough). Even if it feels very stiff to you, your baby will adjust to it.Consumer Reportssuggests 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."

Density:You want high density so it’s firm enough to keep your baby safe while sleeping. Most foam mattresses don’t list density on the packaging, but weight can be a good indicator. As for innerspring mattresses, manufacturers often equate the number of coils with firmness, but the gauge of the wire is just as important. Lower gauge means thicker wire, which is stronger and therefore firmer. Look for a mattress with 135 or more coils and a gauge of 15.5 or lower.

Resiliency:When you push your hand down into the middle of the mattress and remove it, how quickly does it regain its shape? Faster is better; sleeping babies make an impression on the foam, and it can be difficult for them to change position if the mattress retains their shape. Some foam mattresses are “2-stage” or “dual firmness,” with a firm side for infants and a softer side for toddlers.

Weight:A typical foam mattress weighs about 7 to 8 pounds, although mattresses made of memory foam (an especially dense form of polyurethane) can weigh close to 20 pounds. Innerspring crib mattresses are heavier in general, weighing in at about 15 to 25 pounds. Keep in mind that you’ll be hoisting up a side of the mattress, or lifting the whole thing, when changing your baby’s sheet.

Mattress cover (ticking):For water resistance, look for double- or triple-laminated ticking reinforced with nylon. This composition is also more resistant to tears, holes, and soggy diapers. Organic mattresses usually have cotton covers; parents may want to consider a fitted waterproof mattress cover.

Venting:Look for small holes on the sides of the mattress that let air flow in and out. A mattress will smell better if it has plenty of vent holes to let odors escape. Diapers do leak, so this is important.

Cleaning:Most traditional mattresses suggest spot-cleaning only. Some have removable covers that can be machine-washed. The innards of at least one crib mattress on the market can be hosed down in the tub once its washable cover is removed.

Certification seals:Crib mattresses for sale in the United States must meet safety standards defined by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and the American Society for Testing and Materials. (The Juvenile Products Manufacturer Association does not test or certify crib mattresses.) A manufacturer’s claim that a product is organic can mean a variety of things, but look for an Oeko-Tex Standard 100 certification (a worldwide uniform certification), which assures you that certain flame retardants and heavy metals were not used to make the mattress.

Important safety notes

  • Use caution with used or secondhand crib mattresses. Some studies link used mattresses to an increased risk of SIDS, although researchers aren’t sure whether the mattresses caused the increase in risk or were simply correlated with an increased risk. (Theories that fungal activity or toxic gases in used mattresses caused SIDS have been largely laid to rest.) Experts recommend that parents avoid old, worn mattresses, particularly those with foam/padding exposed – which can increase the potential for bacterial growth – or those that hold an indentation after your hand is placed firmly on the surface, then removed.

  • Air mattresses are not safe for babies. The soft surface is a suffocation hazard. As the CPSC warns, "Never place infants to sleep on air mattresses or other soft surfaces (such as water beds and adult beds), which are not specifically designed or safe for infant use."
  • No matter what mattress parents choose, they should continue to follow the American Academy of Pediatrics’ safe-sleep guidelines and put babies to sleep on their backs on a firm, bare surface.

What it’s going to cost you

Crib mattresses start at about $40 and can range to more than $350. Organic mattresses start at about $80 and can reach $400.

How many mattresses should a crib have

Getting Started
Choosing a crib mattress might seem like a boring task but it’s one that warrants careful consideration. The mattress is as important as the crib, and we recommend buying the best one you can.

Why does it matter? For one thing, your baby will spend a lot of time in his crib. It might seem hard to believe, especially when you’re getting up to feed a fussy baby in the middle of the night, but infants sleep up to 18 hours a day.

You’ll want to make sure the mattress fits properly in the crib you’ve selected without gaps that could pose a danger to your baby. And the mattress should be firm. A soft one can conform to the shape of your baby’s head or face, increasing the risk of suffocation or even sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
There are two general types of crib mattresses: foam and innerspring. Both types—if they’re good quality—will keep their shape well and provide excellent support for infants and toddlers. There are differences, though. Foam—usually made from polyurethane—tends to be lighter (about 5 to 13 pounds) compared with an innerspring mattress (about 15 to 30 pounds). So although you’ll probably be lifting just a corner at a time when changing your baby’s sheets, it might be a bit easier with a foam mattress. Foam is also less springy and therefore less likely to be used as a trampoline when your child is older. Still, innerspring crib mattresses are more popular in the U.S., possibly because most adults sleep on innersprings, too.

Look for Quality
Whichever type of mattress you chose, look for quality. The cheapest foam and innerspring mattresses have thin vinyl coverings and edgings that can tear, crack, and dry out over time. As prices increase, coverings tend to be thicker, puncture-resistant, reinforced double or triple laminates, or very fine organic cotton. An innerspring mattress that has more or better-gauge steel and better-quality cushioning will weigh more. The same goes for a foam mattress that’s made of denser, better-quality foam.

Still, you don’t have to spend a fortune or try as many mattresses as the Princess and the Pea to get a good-quality one. A mattress that costs between $90 and $200 will generally serve your baby well. Prices for foam and innerspring mattresses are comparable, ranging from $50 to $400 and up. (The more expensive ones are made with organic cotton or natural latex.) Low-priced models (less than $90) might be too soft and flimsy. Higher-priced models tend to be firmer and therefore safer.

You Can’t Tell a Mattress by Its Cover
With a mattress, almost everything that matters is on the inside. Some crib mattresses feel great in the store but begin to falter once your baby starts to use it. We’ve learned that you can’t depend on sales staff, even at reputable retail outlets, to give you accurate information. One told us, quite convincingly, that innerspring mattresses were better than foam because foam tends to "break down" after 18 months. Twenty-five years ago that may have been true, but not anymore. "A top-quality foam crib mattress will hold up just as long as an innerspring crib mattress with normal use," says Dennis Schuetz, director of marketing for the Colgate Juvenile Products Company, a manufacturer in Atlanta. That’s because foam crib mattresses have become much more durable.

Hit the Stores
Once you get a sense of options in different price ranges, you should go to a store to see what a quality crib mattress looks and feels like. One place to start? The label. Manufacturers are required by law to reveal what a mattress is made of. Don’t buy one from a manufacturer or retailer that doesn’t tell you this with in-store information, displays, or online specifications. In fact, you should be able to find out the components of each layer. And when you push down on a mattress, your hand should spring right up. Schuetz says the biggest mistake parents make is picking a mattress that’s comfortable for them. It’s better to pick a crib mattress that’s harder than you would like it to be. "If it feels good to you, it’s too soft for your baby," he says, adding that babies need more support than adults.

Buy New
Buy a new crib mattress, if possible. For one thing, it ensures that the mattress is sanitary. If you buy a used mattress or accept a hand-me-down, you won’t know for sure how it was cared for or stored. Mold can grow in improperly stored crib mattresses, and bacteria can fester on the surface from liquids (diaper leakage, spit-up) that weren’t properly cleaned up. If you buy a new one for your first child and keep it clean, you can use it for your next child if you store it in a dry environment and it stays firm.

Use a Cover
Use a tightly fitting, washable waterproof mattress cover to protect the mattress and keep the baby’s sleeping environment as clean and sanitary as possible.

Test the Fit
By law, all full-sized crib mattresses must be at least 27 1/4 inches by 51 5/8 inches, and no more than 6 inches thick. If you can, shop in a store that displays crib mattresses on the selling floor, and check the fit by putting it inside a sample crib before you buy it. If you can squeeze more than two fingers between the mattress and the crib, the mattress is too small.

Don’t Worry About Warranties
Some mattresses offer warranties for one year, seven years, or even a lifetime. Don’t be swayed by a long warranty, and don’t pay extra for a mattress with a warranty. "Warranties are mostly a marketing tool to entice the consumer to spend more," Schuetz says. In general, you can expect a quality crib mattress to last as long as you’re going to use it as long as the cover doesn’t rip or tear.

We have not tested any of these crib mattresses.

The 6 Highest Rated Crib Mattress Picks For 2020

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Do you think that children deserve the best possible care and products we can afford?

One of the most important things in the healthy development of your child is a good sleep. Proper bedding systems should help your baby to sleep well, and provide necessary support for their spine and neck.

If you are a parent looking for theultimatecrib mattress for your babyor toddler, choosing a good one is not an easy task. According to American Academy of Pediatrics many parents put their babies in unsafe sleeping conditions.

Top 6 Baby Mattresses Compared

  • Type: Memory Foam
  • Height: 5"
  • Waterproof: Yes
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
  • Type: Innerspring
  • Height: 6"
  • Waterproof: Yes
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
  • Type: Hypo-Allergenic Foam
  • Height: 5"
  • Waterproof: Yes
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
  • Type: Innerspring
  • Height: 2.5"
  • Waterproof: Yes
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
  • Type: Memory Foam
  • Height: 5.5"
  • Waterproof: Yes
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
  • Type: Soybean Foam
  • Height: 5"
  • Waterproof: Yes

Important Things to Consider Before Buying (Buyer’s Guide)

Mattress Size

There is no right or wrong size. However, there are some regulations. The minimum size proposed by the government are in a range between 27 5/8″ to 28 5/8″ of width and 51 3/4″ to 53″ in length.The minimum size should be 27 1/4” x 51 5/8”and the bedding shouldn’t be thicker than 6 inches. The main rule is to have it fit the crib snug or moderately snug. The depth differs between 5 to 6 inches for coil crib type and 4 to 6 inches for foam-based products. Generally, if the gap is more than two fingers, the mattress is too small.

Choose the Material Wisely

A well-designed mattress should not only make your baby’s sleep more comfortable but should also give support for healthy spine development. The material is one of the most important aspects you should consider. Try to find along-term,comfortablebed since your child will probably sleep in a crib until the age of three. A mutual opinion on whether a foam or innerspring type is better for the baby doesn’t exist so you should carefully research before you buy.

Make sure to read our complete overview of memory foam mattresses and how it works.

Soft vs. Firm

Most of the experts are of the opinion that it’s better to have a firm crib mattress over a soft mattress. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the main death cause for infants in the United States of America is the SIDS – Sudden infant death syndrome.

This syndrome is caused by suffocation hazards which are a consequence of a soft sleeping surface. The bedding should snap back when you press it on the center and the thresholds. It shouldn’t conform to the baby’s head shape. The bed should be resilient enough to regain its shape quickly after applying hand pressure on it.

There are however various types which have two level of firmness foam. Onesoft for the toddlersand afirm one for infants. As far as infants are concerned, it’s safer to go with the firm rather than soft.

Is It Waterproof?

It might be a good idea to buy a waterproof mattress. A good indicator that it’s water resistant is adouble or triple ticking bolstered with nylon. This kind of content will also show high resistance to being teared up or soaking other solids or liquids.

Most of the products have covers made out of cotton and you might want to buy waterproof covers instead. You should also take notice of the airflow in and out. It should haveventing holeswhich will release the odor from leaking diapers.

Compliance Standards

Crib mattresses must pass certain standard requirements in order to be sold on the market in the United States. First of all, there are safety standards which are defined by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and the American Society for Testing and Materials. The US Federal government has regulations for cot bed standard sizes under the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (CPSIA).

As far as the eco-friendly beds are concerned, there are many manufacturers who claim that their products are indeed friendly and safe for the environment. However, you should check if they have a certification called Oeko-Tex Standard 100. This is a globally accepted certification geared towards product safety with chemical and other stipulations.

Price Range

When it comes to buying a good baby cot mattress, you might not want to try bargain shopping, but you should also know that buying anoverpricedone won’t do you any good. The price is normally a good indicator of quality, but there are other important aspects you should look into.

According to numerous customers, a high-quality product will probably cost you between $90 and $350. Speaking of organic, they have a price tagsomewhere between $80 and $400.

These are some of the important factors that you should keep in mind, and we highlighted some of them in our guide with some of the best bed brands of 2020.

Non-Toxic Sleep At Last: The Best Organic Crib Mattresses

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Prepare to enter the exciting world of buying a crib mattress. Yay!

All jokes aside, having a good organic crib mattress is one of the easiest wins when it comes to creating a more non-toxic home.

You might be shocked at how many awful chemicals can be found in a mattress.From hormone-disrupting phthalates to toxic fumes to flame-retardant chemicals, there’s alotof nasty stuff that might be lurking in your mattress.

Since babies spend 12-15+ hours per day on their mattress, it’s so crucial that they have a safe, non-toxic bed.

Having looked at other online guides discussing the “best organic crib mattresses”, we were appalled at some of the recommendations that are being given.On more than one popular list we found, many of the recommendations weren’t even organic, let alone safe!

Not only that, but there’s a lot of tricky misleading marketing amongst “organic” crib mattress manufacturers.

So, let’s take a dive into the world of crib mattresses, why they can be dangerous, and which mattresses you can trust.

The problem with conventional mattresses.

Most crib mattresses are made with polyurethane foam, which is a derivative of petroleum.

This is problematic for two main reasons:

  1. Polyurethane foam is very flammable. In order to meet federal flammability standards, manufacturers typically douse the mattresses in toxic flame retardant chemicals like formaldehyde or benzene.
  2. Because the mattress is doused in these chemicals, these chemicals along with the foam itself give off toxic gasses that your baby inhales.

Manufacturers are under no obligation to list the chemicals used in the mattress. And if they don’t list them, that’s a very bad sign.

Not only that, but many mattresses use vinyl/PVC to coat the mattress and make it waterproof. Vinyl is known to be one of the most toxic plastics there is, and can be leeched into baby’s skin.

  1. The mattresses released 30 different types of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) along with other harmful chemicals.
  2. New mattresses wereeven worsethan old mattresses, emitting 4x as many harmful VOCs compared to the old models.
  3. The expose to the infant was twice that of an adult standing in the middle of the room.

Crib mattress manufacturerssimply don’t careabout the safety of our children, period. This is why we need to do our own research and shop very carefully, choosing only the best organic crib mattresses from trusted companies who actually care.

Greenwashing is everywhere in the world of mattresses.

Greenwashing is the marketing practice of misleading customers into thinking that their product is “green” or eco-friendly.

Since there are no regulations on using the term “organic” for mattresses (for the materials there are), many manufacturers are using only an organic outer layer on the mattresses and labeling the whole thing as “organic”.

Inside you might find polyurethane foam, toxic chemicals and flame retardants, etc.

Not only that, but sometimes manufacturers are sneaky and use a organic certification logos when onlypartof the materials used are certified. Or sometimes it’s only thefactorythat’s certified—not the product itself.

Also, beware of terms like “soybean foam”, “green foam”, etc. These are always greenwashing terms to hide the fact that they’re using polyurethane foam, a toxic plastic ingredient.

What in the world do all of the certifications mean?

There are a confusing number of certifications you might find on a crib mattress.

Because the terms “organic”, “sustainable” and “natural” are non-regulated, it’s kind of a wild west scenario when it comes to these certifications. Not all of them are trustworthy; let’s take a look at them.

GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard)

This is the only organic certification that matters on a crib mattress. GOTS is an international standard that covers the entire start to finish process, from spinning, knitting, weaving , dying and manufacturing.

It certifies that there are no harmful chemicals like formaldehyde or heavy metals used in the product, and it includes provisions that ban practices like child labor and genetic engineering.

GOLS (Global Organic Latex Standard)

Similar to GOTS, this standard covers the latex in the mattress and insures that the rubber trees used for the latex are grown ethically, sustainably, and without pesticides, herbicides and other harmful chemicals.

MADE SAFE

This certification is one of the strictest on the market and verifies that the mattresses are made without known harmful carcinogens, behavioral, reproductive, and neuro toxins, hormone disruptors, heavy metals, pesticides, insecticides, flame retardants, toxic solvents, or harmful VOCs.

This is a great certification to have, but again, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s organic. But this certification, along with GOTS and GOLS certifications, is a great trio.

USDA Organic

The USDA certifies agriculture products in a raw state. When cotton is harvested, it can still be USDA certified organic.

But once it’s processed and turned into material, it’s no longer considered an agriculture product, and the manufacturing processes used are beyond the scope of USDA certification.

Therefore, a USDA organic label alone doesn’t guarantee that there are no harmful chemicals in the mattress.

OEKO-Tex

This certification tests for a long list of chemicals, pesticides and phthalates, including VOCs (volatile organic compounds, or gasses). OEKO-Tex certification is completely voluntary and must be updated every year. While this is a great certification to have, it doesnotmean that the product is necessarily organic.

Certipur-US

This standard certifies that there are no PBDE (polybrominated diphenyl ester) flame retardants, mercury, lead, formaldehyde, or ozone depleters.

However, you should know that this certification is actually a registered trademark ofAlliance for Flexible Polyurethane Foam, Inc, a corporation whose board of directors consists entirely of members associated with the polyurethane foam industry.

This, in our opinion, makes this certification a bit sketchy. Could it be a marketing tool by the polyurethane industry to sell more mattresses?

While this isn’t really abadcertification for a crib mattress to have, it certainly isn’t good enough and it alone doesn’t mean that it’s organic.

GreenGuard

This certification evaluates mattresses for VOC emissions. To test the mattresses, they place them in a vacuum chamber and subject them to various testing. Another good certification but it’s not good enough on its own.

An excellent organic crib mattress will be:

Truly organic.

Unfortunately, since the term “organic” is unregulated for mattresses, so there’s nothing legally stopping a company from calling their mattress “organic when it’s really not.

Free of chemical flame retardants.

All mattresses sold in the US must pass federal flammability standards. Unfortunately, since polyurethane foam is so flammable, the easiest and cheapest way to achieve this is with the use of nasty chemical flame retardants.

It’s entirely possible to manufacture a mattress that meets these standardswithoutthe use of chemicals, for example by using materials that aren’t as flammable, such as wool.

There is no requirement for a company to list which chemicals they use in the mattress. But any good company will tell you if they use chemical flame retardants without having to ask them. If they don’t, I’d avoid that brand.

Not be made of polyurethane, soy and vegetable-based foam.

Polyurethane foam is a petroleum-derived foam that emits VOCs and is highly flammable and therefore is treated with toxic flame retardant chemicals.

Greenwashing is sometimes used here, where you’ll see that a mattress uses “soybean core foam” or similar. The fact is that these mattresses are simply polyurethane foam mixed with a small amount of soybean or other plant-based material as a marketing trick.

Not use vinyl/PCP for waterproofing.

It sounds great to have a waterproof mattress, right? No pee leaking straight into it, yay!

But in order to make the mattress waterproof, manufacturers often use a vinyl outer layer. Vinyl (also known as polyvinyl chloride or PVC), which is one of the most toxic plastics there is.

You should never buy a crib mattress that uses a vinyl outer layer. But it’s also crucial that you have a waterproof pad on top, because a wet mattress can result in mild, mildew, bacteria and fungus.

The best alternative to vinyl that manufacturers use is polyethylene, which is typically sourced from natural sources like sugarcane. While it’s still a plastic, companies like Naturepedic use food-grade polyethylene that should be safe to sleep on.

Made in the USA.

Some crib mattresses are made in China, which is concerning for a number of reasons. Not only are the laws and regulations more lax there, but you’ll have to worry about quality control issues, contamination with unknown chemicals and worse, etc. All of the mattresses we recommend are made in the USA.

Firm.

Although as an adult you might want to prioritize comfort over firmness, when it comes to buying a baby mattress, firmness is key for safety.

Good warranty and customer service.

Issues can arise with any mattress, and a company that stands by their product to help out with any potential issues is a great positive. A good, solid warranty is also a huge bonus: some companies have 20 to 25 year limited warranties, for example.

The best organic crib mattresses brands.

Below we’ve compiled a list of trustworthy, non-toxic and organic crib mattresses that fit all of the above criteria.

You can put your trust in any of the products listed below. And while it’s not cheap to buy an organic crib mattress (the cheapest option we have is $259) it’swellworth it to avoid the awful, nasty chemicals that can be found in traditional mattresses.

We understand that not everyone can afford to shell out $259 for a crib mattress that they’re not going to use for very long, but if you’re trying to shop non-toxic for your little one, the mattress is a good priority.

So, without further adieu, here’s the list:

Naturepedic

Price:$259 to $399

Naturepedic is a great company that makes USA-made, safe organic crib mattresses and comes highly recommended by Glowing Nest.

Their mattresses are Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) and MADE SAFE certified and have no flame retardants, vinyl/PVC, polyurethane foam, phthalates, latex, antibacterial treatments, glues or adhesives, GMO fibers or insulator pads.

They’re also certified by GREENGUARD Gold and formaldehyde free.

Naturepedic makes a bunch of different mattresses and here’s how they stack up:

Innerspring line:These come in 150-coil and 252-coil options, regular and dual-firmness (which makes it suitable for toddlers) and seamless and non-seamless (seamless makes it completely waterproof) versions. These use an organic cotton fill.

Lightweight line:These use a food-grade polyethylene foam core fill, which really isn’t as good as the organic cotton fill the innerspring versions have. If having a light mattress is what’s important to you, these arewaylighter. These are about 2 pounds, while the innerspring line comes in at about 18 pounds.

Breathable line:Breathable mattress are supposed to be more comfortable for baby, because they allow air flow. They’re also supposed to be safer, because baby can theoretically breathe through the mattress material if she were to flip onto her face.

Ultra line:The ultra is the most expensive model that has it all: lightweight, breathable, dual-firmness, and the softer toddler side is quilted to make it more comfortable for a bigger child. Please be aware that the quilted side isnotwaterproof, so topping it off with their organic cotton waterproof mattress protector would probably be a good idea.

While many breathable crib mattresses on the market have a variety of issues including the use of flame retardant chemicals, polyurethane foam, etc. Naturepedic does make the safest choice out there if you do want a breathable crib mattress, though.

All Naturepedic mattresses have a waterproof covering made from polyethelene sourced from non-GMO sugarcane. They also have an optional 2-stage design, where one side of the mattress is firmer than the other, making it suitable for a toddler.

Some bad reviews?

Naturepedic mattress tend to have some bad reviews online from parents who say that the mattress started to sag in the middle. Now, most of these reports are at least a few years old and supposedly they’ve fixed the issue. They will replace the mattress free-of-charge if you end up having any kind of issue with sag.

Emily Crib Mattress

Price: $289 + waterproof mattress protector for $60

The Emily crib mattress is another great option. Also made in the USA, it’s made of all GOTS-certified organic materials: wool, cotton and coconut coir. It comes in only one option: 150-coil innerspring model.

The core of the mattress is made of organic wool. Not only is wool a great natural material but it’s also naturally flame resistant, eliminating the need for toxic chemical flame retardants.

The outer layer of the mattress if made from organic cotton. They use an organic coconut coir comfort layer, which is blending with GOLS-certified organic latex, which is supposed to create a firm but pressure-relieving surface for your baby.

Please be aware thatthis is not a waterproof mattress.Therefore, it’s crucial that you use a waterproof mattress protector. They, of course, make one, but it will set you back another $60 on top of what’s already a rather expensive mattress.

The makers of the Emily Mattress offer a 120-day trial and free shipping and returns, so it’s really risk free. If you don’t like it in the first few months you can return it, no questions asked. This only applies if you buy it straight from their website

Because of the potential sagging issues with the Naturepedic models, this is probably the safer bet as of right now.

Lifekind

Price:$799

If an all-latex organic crib mattress is up your alley, Lifekind make one that is good but rather expensive. They also have a 280-coil innerspring mattress option that costs the same price ($799).

The mattresses are all made in the USA in a factory where no chemicals are ever used.

Let’s take a look at the two models:

Latex:This mattress is made from GOTS-certified latex, is completely metal-free. It’s covered in a double-stitched outer layer made from GOTS-certified organic cotton and wool. This model comes with a 20-year limited warranty.

Innerspring:Similar to the latex version, it’s a 280-coil innerspring mattress that has the same double-stitched outer layer. However, this model is not waterproof and requires the use of a waterproof protector pad. The innerspring model boasts an impressive 25-year limited warranty.

This brand is definitely expensive and I’m not sure that price is justified. If you’re looking for an all-latex mattress, there aren’t many great organic options out there, so this one might be worth considering.

But as far as the innerspring model, the similar offerings from companies like Naturepedic and their 252-coil count offerings come in at a little more than half the price of this one, or less. Hard to justify.

Savvy Rest

Price: $399

Another latex mattress but cheaper than the Lifekind mattress and also made in the USA.

It’s made from a big slap of GOLS-certified organic Dunlop latex and the outer layer is GOTS-certified organic wool and cotton to achieve the flame retardant status without the use of themicals.

The outer layer can be removed with a zipper, so it can be removed for spot cleaning, but it’s not washing-machine friendly.

Like many other mattresses on our list, this one isn’t waterproof and does require the use of a waterproof protector pad.

A big issue we have with this mattress is that it’s not at all returnable. Unlike all of the other mattresses on our list, if you don’t like this one, tough luck. They do, however, offer a 20-year limited warranty.

All in all, if you’re on the market for an organic latex crib mattress at a decent price, this one will do the job nicely. But just beware that you’re stuck with it once you buy it.

Avocado

Price:$1249

Let’s get one thing out of the way: this mattress isexpensive. I’m not even surewhyit’s so expensive. They sell a queen size mattress that’s almost the same price as this one and they do call it a “luxury” mattress, but $1249 is extremely expensive for a crib mattress.

Avacado is a big name in adult mattresses and they decided to get into the baby crib mattress market with this offering. They’re handmade in California and are GreenGuard GOLD, GOTS organic & GOLS organic certified.

This mattressisn’twaterproof and requires a mattress pad. It’s a 170-coil innerspring mattress, similar to the low-end Naturepedic models which cost 1/3 of the price. They offer a 100-night trial and a 25-year warranty, which is pretty solid.

It’s a dual-sided mattress with one side being more suitable for a toddler, which is a bonus. The toddler side is coated in coconut coir (combined with latex).

I’m sure it’s a good mattress, but I’d be hard pressed to recommend it at this price. If luxury is what you’re on the market for, this might be an option, but for most people, it’s just way too expensive.

Popular mattresses to avoid.

There are some popular brands on the market that should actually be avoided. From toxic chemicals and flame retardants to noxious off-gassing, let’s take a look.

Newton– An extremely popular newer brand that has a line of mattresses and have made a huge push in internet marketing. Their mattresses arenotorganic, and are made from polymer (plastic).

They say they don’t use chemical flame retardants, but instead use phosphates (salt) as the flame retardant mechanism. We can’t speak as to whether this is safe or not, but since the mattress is made of plastics and not organic, we give it a hard pass.

Sealy Soybean Foam Core– Greenwashing at its finest. This company would love you to believe that their “soybean foam” core is super natural and healthy, but it’s in fact just polyurethane foam, and the cover is made from vinyl which is known to be toxic. They say they don’t use flame retardant chemicals, but according to research by Irina at I Read Labels For You, after contacting the company and doing the research, she couldn’t figure out how they’re meeting flame resistance guidelines without using chemicals. Avoid.

Moonlight Slumber– This mattress is promoted heavily by other blogs as the “best” crib mattress. However, it’s not organic and is made of synthetic materials (polyurethane foam), and at the price it sells for ($200) you can spend a little bit more and get a fully organic baby mattress.

Colgate Eco Classica III– Another mattress that is heavily promoted on “best of” lists, this one has some misleading marketing. The use the term “organic” all over the place, yet the core is made from polyurethane foam and only has an organic outer layer.

Why a used crib mattress is a bad idea.

Hand-me-downs are great! But when it comes to baby crib mattresses, it’s actually a no-go.

While you might be okay if you know exactly what you’re looking for, some studies have linked the use of old crib mattresses with an increased risk of SIDS.

A study published in 2002 by the British Medical Journal concluded that there was a “…valid statistical associated between sudden infant death syndrome and the use of an infant mattress previously used by another child…” and I would therefore never recommend letting your baby sleep on a used crib mattress.

Other reasons not to purchase a used crib mattress:

  • Third-hand smoke.This is the toxic chemicals that linger after a cigarette or cigar is extinguished. According to the government-funded tobacco-awareness website, Breathe Easy Maine, “Infants exposed to thirdhand smoke are more likely to die from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), and those exposed are at an increased risk for asthma.”
  • They’re unsanitary.Crib mattresses are magnets for poop and pee, and you have no idea how well the previous owners took care of it. Moisture can lead to mold, bacteria and fungi growth inside of the mattress too. Pretty icky stuff, and you’d never know about it unless you cut the mattress in half.
  • They can be full of dust mites(or even bed bugs). An improperly cleaned mattress can be a dust mite or bedbug gateway into your home.
  • Crib mattresses don’t last forever.A used mattress may not have a lot of life left in it. If it’s starting to sag or lose its support, it might not be safe to use anymore. A sagging mattress is a definite SIDS risk.
  • Safety standards have changed.While we’re all about buying an organic crib mattress here, older crib mattresses used flame retardants like PBDEs which are even worse than the ones used today.

It’s just not worth using a hand-me-down mattress. If you have an older mattress than you used for another child and you absolutely know that it was well taken care of and stored in a cool and dry place, then by all means use it.

Why memory foam mattresses are a bad idea.

First of all, let’s make a distinction between foam andmemoryfoam.

Regular polyurethane (or foam) is a very common material used in the construction of mattresses and has been used for nearly a century.

However, recent advances in technology have given us materials like memory foam. Typically, memory foam is made of the same polyurethane but with added chemicals that increase its viscosity and density. It’s sometimes referred to asviscoelasticorlow-resilience polyurethane foam(LRPu).

The end result is that memory foam will change shape and form to the head or body, which can be great for comfort for a fully grown adult like yourself. But there’s a BIG problem when it comes to the use of memory foam for infants.

In 2016, the AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) put out a report on SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) and concluded that a firm sleeping surface is key in reducing the risk of sleep-related infant deaths.

In this report, they state that they donotcondone the use of memory foam mattresses because they can form a pocket or indentation that can lead to suffocation if the child rolls face-first into it.

Approximately 3500 infants die each year in the US alone due to SIDS and other sleep-related deaths so this is no joke. Please don’t use a memory foam mattress (or topper, for that matter)!

Safety and maintenance of your crib mattress.

No matter what crib mattress you end up getting, there are some universal tips that everyone should know for proper care and use of their mattress.

  • Allow the mattress to air out before use.When you get the new mattress, be sure to open up the packaging and let it air out in a well-ventilated room for at least a couple of days before you use it.
  • Always have your little one sleep on their back.To reduce the risk of sleep-related deaths, always have your little one sleep on their back. Read our article on this for more info.
  • Make sure the mattress passes the “two finger” test.All crib mattresses should have a snug fit. Try putting 2 fingers between the mattress and the wall of the crib. If it’s too snug to fit, then the mattress is the right size. However, if there is more space then that, the mattress isn’t safe to use.
  • Use a fitted sheet and possibly a waterproof cover over the mattress.All mattresses should have a fitted crib sheet over them, and if the mattress you have isn’t waterproof, it’s averygood idea to use a waterproof mattress pad on top to protect it from diaper leaks and other messes that are sure to arise.
  • Nothing should be in the crib with your little one.This includes toys, bumpers or loose blankets, all of which can be a suffocation or strangulation hazard.
  • Do the “two-finger” test”.The federal government of the United States mandates that crib mattresses must be a minimum of 27 1/4″ x 51 5/8″ with a thickness not exceeding 6 inches. However, to make sure that it’s safe, employ the “2 finger” test. If you can fit more than 2 fingertips between the mattress and the wall of the crib, there is too much space to be safe and you shouldn’t be using that crib and mattress.

Summing it up.

Having a good, safe, organic baby crib mattress is an excellent way to start creating a safe, non-toxic home. While there’s a lot of misleading information in the world of mattresses, from both manufacturers and bloggers, it’s not actually that hard to find a mattress that’s safe and reliable.

Do you have any questions in your search for the best organic crib mattress? Please let us know in the comments section below.

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