Which Fisher-Price bassinet is best?
When it comes time to put your little one to sleep, every ounce of help counts. While cribs are a staple past the 6-month mark, a bassinet can provide the perfect resting place for your baby to sleep close to you safely and peacefully for as long as possible. Fisher-Price, a trusted name in baby and children’s products, offers a variety of good quality and affordable bassinets, the best of which is the Fisher-Price Soothing Motions Bassinet.
What to know before you buy a bassinet
Bassinet vs. crib vs. cradle
Cribs, cradles, and bassinets are all specially designed places for babies to sleep, so it can be confusing to tell them apart. The biggest distinction among them is size, with cribs the biggest, bassinets the smallest and cradles generally in between.
- Bassinets are designed for babies 6 months old and younger. They are small and lightweight so you can have your baby near you while they sleep. Bassinets may be foldable for storage and transportation, and they may have added features to help your little one fall asleep.
- Cribs are large, sturdy bed structures with high walls so your baby can’t climb out. Once they’re six months old, or can lift themselves up on their hands, it’s unsafe for them to be in a bassinet, so a crib provides a secure bed even into their toddler years. But most cribs are too large for very young babies to feel secure.
- Cradles are the middle ground between cribs and bassinets. Most have a crib-like wooden frame, but aren’t as large as a crib. Most cradles can be distinguished by their rocking legs, which facilitate a smooth transition from sleeping to being held and vice versa.
It should be noted that these terms are a bit fluid. There are cribs and bassinets that rock like cradles, and cradles as big as cribs or as small as bassinets.
Size and footprint
Though bassinets take up considerably less space than cribs, they do take up space. Measure the area where you plan to put your bassinet before buying so you can ensure it fits properly. Additionally, if you plan on moving it from one room to another (during naptime, for example), you should take the size of your door frames and hallways into account, so you have enough room to maneuver it.
Age, height and weight limits
Regardless of stated limits, you should always switch your child from a bassinet to a crib once they are able to push or pull themselves up, as this means the bassinet is no longer safe for them. Until they have learned those skills, rely on the weight and height limits listed by the manufacturer. If your baby has outgrown the weight limit, move them to a crib even if the bassinet still seems stable. If you have a heavier baby, look for bassinets with a 20- to 25-pound weight limit so you won’t have to transition your little one too soon.
Portability vs. stability
One of the key advantages of a bassinet is its ability to be moved around the room or from one room to another. But this portability may come at the cost of some stability, as bassinets are less durable than cribs or cradles. If you plan to keep the bassinet in one place, consider heavier models, as they are more stable than their lighter, more portable counterparts. If you’re going portable, there are bassinets that fold away, or have detachable baskets to take with you on the go, which can be extremely convenient when traveling to show off your new baby to the family.
What to look for in a quality Fisher-Price bassinet
Lights and sounds
Many bassinets offer music, white noise or other soothing sounds to help get your baby to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. You can also find bassinets with night lights or light projectors that throw stars or other shapes onto the ceiling. Keep in mind that some babies fall asleep easily to these mesmerizing images, while others may be distracted by them and stay awake longer.
Rocking and vibration
Many bassinets rock or sway gently. Some have motors that initiate the motion, while others just require a small push to get going. Either way, swaying and rocking can be comforting to your baby, helping them to fall asleep. Some bassinets also have a vibration setting, soothing to some infants and irritating to others. If you opt for a model that rocks or sways, be sure it has a way to lock it in place so your little one doesn’t shake it by wiggling during the night.
Toys and mobiles
Bassinets can come with a variety of features designed to keep your baby entertained, such as detachable toys or hanging mobiles. These can be helpful if you want your child to be able to play in the bassinet. As with projectors, though, some babies are distracted by these items and have a harder time falling asleep. If the toys or mobiles are detachable, you can simply remove them if necessary.
If you’re concerned about investing in a bassinet that can only last your baby 6 months, consider a multifunctional model that can convert into a changing table or a playpen. These 2-in-1 bassinets are often more expensive, but they can be well worth the cost as they save both space and the money that would go toward purchasing separate items.
How much you can expect to spend on a Fisher-Price bassinet
While there are bassinets on the market for over $500, you’ll be hard pressed to find a Fisher-Price model that costs more than $200. Most Fisher-Price bassinets cost between $80-$170, making them a good budget-friendly option.
Fisher-Price bassinet FAQ
Can I just skip the bassinet and put my newborn in a crib?
A. Yes, but many parents and caregivers prefer bassinets in the beginning months. If you had a C-section or are still recovering from giving birth, bending over to put the child in a crib can be painful, and a bassinet can fit right beside your bed so you can feel closer to your baby. Additionally, some little ones feel a bit lost in a big crib, and a smaller bassinet can make them feel more secure.
What makes Fisher-Price stand out?
A. There’s a reason Fisher-Price continues to be a household name. With over 90 years of experience in children’s toys and products, Fisher-Price is an education-oriented American brand that keeps child development in mind in its manufacturing.
What are the best Fisher-Price bassinets to buy?
Top Fisher-Price bassinet
What you need to know: This all-around bassinet has a variety of features designed to soothe your baby so you can both get a good night’s rest.
What you’ll love: Equipped with a lockable swaying motion, vibrations, calming music and sounds, and a light projector, it also has an adorable mobile on top and a handy storage shelf underneath for all your necessities.
What you should consider: The lightbox is a bit clunky, and some users reported the bassinet basket swaying even when locked.
Top Fisher-Price bassinet for the money
What you need to know: This lightweight bassinet is super easy to fold and transport and has built-in toys, making it a simple and effective bed wherever you go.
What you’ll love: Easy to use and put together, easy to take with you, this bassinet features a gentle manual rocking mechanism that can be locked for safety, as well as built-in but detachable toys so you can use it for sleep and for playtime.
What you should consider: Users report the mattress shrinking in the washer.
Worth checking out
What you need to know: With music and soothing sounds, gentle vibration and a starlight projector, this bassinet is well equipped to help lull your child to sleep.
What you’ll love: Tightly folding to store away at a moment’s notice, this bassinet also offers an optional rocking motion, gentle sounds and music, and two detachable toys for play.
What you should consider: The light show is not very bright, and invisible during the day.
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Collette Bliss writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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