Best Pack n Play Mattress in 2019

Modern parents lead very busy lives. As a result, every invention that helps them to save time or take care of their kids in a more efficient manner is much appreciated.
Perhaps there is no baby-related equipment that has turned out to be as useful as a pack n play. This is a play/napping area that enables you to monitor your child without getting hands-on.
However, to make the most of this playard, you also need to pick a good mattress. This way, you’re guaranteed that your baby is as comfortable as they can be when they’re playing or taking an afternoon nap in their playards. This article guides on how to choose the best mattress for your toddler’s pack n play.

Essential Considerations when Choosing a Pack n Play Mattress

Your toddler’s age

The first thing you should take into account is your baby’s age. The reasonjyjy=] =for this is that different playard mattresses are designed for different ranges of age. Here are a few pointers to help you:

Newborns

If you’ve shopped for a newborn’s bedding before, then you probably realized that a majority of them have soft textures. This is usually the case for their clothes and blankets as well.
However, it’s different when it comes to their mattresses. In this case, the most recommended texture for a newborn’s mattress is firm.
For many parents, it might appear risky to get your little one an extremely firm mattress. But the truth is, you’re doing this to keep them safe. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, soft sleeping platforms pose a suffocation hazard; not to mention; they increase the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
The greatest problem is, newborns just don’t have the stamina to adjust their sleeping positions. As a result, they’re not capable of pushing away items that could block their oxygen supply. To prevent this, always look for a firm mattress that’s been designed for newborns and infants.

Toddlers

By the time they’re celebrating their first birthday, a lot of kids are able to crawl, cruise and even walk.
They’ve already acquired ample strength and neck support. This means they’re able to switch up positions in case they encounter objects that impede proper air circulation. That said, mattresses designed for this group of kids have softer textures.

Newborns and Toddlers

If you don’t want to buy one mattress for your newborn and then be forced to buy another within a few months, you can look for a hybrid mattress instead.
While these are likely to cost more, they are well worth the investment. This is because of their reversible designs. In a nutshell, they have one side that is really firm (ideal for newborns) and the other that is extremely soft (suitable for older infants).
Even better, most manufacturers label both sides, so you don’t have to wrack your brain trying to figure out which side has what texture.
However, there’s one more point you should keep in mind: most reversible mattresses are meant to be used with cribs or toddler beds. If you come across this kind of mattress, be sure to confirm that it can be used in a pack n play.

Location

The type of mattress you purchase will also depend on where you use the pack and play.

On the road

One of the main reasons why guardians invest in playards is so that they’re able to provide comfortable cribs for their babies when they’re miles away from home. Anytime you need your baby to sleep away from home, you have a convenient and safe sleeping surface.
However, this means that you’ll need an equally portable mattress. Usually, mattresses meant for use on-the-go have trifold designs and they come with travel bags. They will also be thinner than conventional mattresses, which makes them lightweight.

In a fixed area

Some parents prefer playards to cribs. With a pack and play, it’s easy to set it up at any place within your home, even if it’s a two-story building. Other parents purchase these units so they can set them up in homes of caregivers or relatives.
For such instances, portability is not a big deal. Thus, you can choose mattresses that can fold as well as those that don’t.
In fact, non-folding mattresses are often thicker; hence more comfortable. Nonetheless, if you intend to take this mattress on the road someday, you should probably stick to the folding type.

Mattress Features

Materials

Did you know that a newborn spends an average of 16 to 17 hours sleeping? What this means is that you should be very careful when choosing materials for your toddler’s playard mattress. The wrong materials could trigger allergic reactions or worse, lead to serious health effects.
To avoid such complications, ensure the mattress is free of BPA, phthalates and other toxic substances that could affect your baby’s health.
A pack and play mattress can be made from one of three materials:

Foam

This is the most common, and it usually consists of polyurethane foam. Foam mattresses are lightweight, and this makes them more suitable for playards than standard crib mattresses.
Most foam mattresses measure between 4 and 6 inches thick. This fits perfectly in the recommended thickness for a playard mattress of 3 to 6 inches. Apart from thickness, foam mattresses also differ in the level of support they offer.
This factor is determined using a mattress density, which is measured in pounds per cubic foot (PCF). For optimal support, look for a mattress with a reasonably high density.

Innerspring

An innerspring mattress is characterized by the presence of steel coils in the core. It will also have a cushioning layer of either cotton or foam and an insulator pad that acts as a buffer between your toddler and the coils.
Innerspring mattresses are heavier than their foam counterparts, averaging between 15 and 20 pounds. Those that integrate organic materials will likely weigh more than this. While this translates to greater support, it also makes them less portable. Thus, you’ll have to weigh between ease of carrying and comfort.

Organic

The phrase “organic” is used for any material that’s been tested and approved by the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS). Even though the majority of organic mattresses are described as foam, there are a few organic innerspring.
One thing to keep in mind is that these mattresses are never truly organic. The GOTS certification is awarded to any product that has at least 70% organic materials. Common organic materials used to make baby mattresses are cotton, latex, and wool.

Size

Another vital point you should consider is the size of the mattress. The last thing you want to do is spend several bucks on a mattress that doesn’t fit in your toddler’s playard.
To be completely safe, you should measure the size of your playard. If you have a Graco pack n play, the ideal mattress size is 37 x 25.5 x 1.5 inches.

Cover

Whenever possible, you should buy a playard mattress with a cover. A cover is much easier to clean and maintain than an entire mattress, especially one that doesn’t have a waterproof top.
Even better is the fact that some covers can be removed, tossed in a washing machine and air-dried.

Top 5 Pack n Play Mattresses

1.Dream On Me Playard Mattress

Our top pick is the Dream On Me Mattress. With a thickness of 3 inches, this is the best mattress for Graco pack n play and other playards because it provides excellent support.
The mattress is made from a combination of dense foam and vinyl, although the foam takes up the majority (about 90%). This foam construction provides an excellent layer of comfort, giving your toddler a snug but firm feel.
This mattress measures 25.5 x 37.5 x 3 inches and it weighs about 2 pounds. These dimensions mean it will perfectly on your pack n play, and that it’s light enough to carry on trips.
Dream on Me comes with a hypoallergenic cover, helping to protect your baby from potential allergies. Furthermore, the cover is easy to clean and it boosts the lifespan of the mattress.
We like
  • Boasts a premium-quality construction
  • Includes a waterproof, hypoallergenic cover
  • Easy to clean
  • Provides maximum comfort
We don't like
  • Does not fit all the playards

2.Folding Pack-n-Play Mattress by Sproutwise Kids

If you prefer a playard mattress made exclusively from organic materials, the Folding Pack-n-Play Mattress is a good option.
It’s made of natural latex rubber and then covered with ultra-soft organic cotton fabric. With such a quality construction, you’ll never have to worry that your baby will suffer allergies because of the materials used to make the mattress.
Moreover, this is one of the few mattresses that comply with all flammability standards set by the Federal government. It’s also free of any toxic chemicals, BPA and phthalate compounds.
Another thing we love about this mattress is that it’s eco-friendly. The manufacturer uses natural latex rubber, which is sustainably harvested from rubber trees.
This mattress is also among the most portable units. If you’re looking for a mattress that you can carry during your vacation, the tri-fold design makes it compact enough for easy portability.
We like
  • Constructed using natural materials
  • Folds into a compact size for travel
  • Comes with a detachable and washable cover
  • The company gives donations for every mattress purchased
We don't like
  • Too soft for babies younger than 6 months

3.Milliard Elite Pack N' Play Mattress

One of the best decisions you can make is to get a mattress with a dual-sided design. This way, you can switch to the softer side when your toddler grows older. If you’re looking for this kind of mattress, Milliard Elite is the best mattress for pack n play.
The cover on this pack n play mattress is dual-sided, with one section firmer than the other. This gives you the freedom to choose the right amount of firmness depending on your child’s age. Additionally, this cover is completely waterproof on both sides.
Another feature that helps your baby nap soundly is the fact that it’s made of high-density foam. This strikes a good balance between firmness and comfort.
If you’re keen on buying certified products, you’ll be pleased to know that the Milliard Elite comes with Certipur certification. This means that it’s been tested and found to be fireproof. Plus, it adheres to all other U.S. safety regulations.
Upon purchase, the manufacturer recommends giving the mattress time to break in. More specifically, you should wait 24 to 48 hours after opening it so as to allow the foam to expand.
We like
  • Includes a dual-sided, waterproof cover
  • High-density foam construction for supreme comfort
  • Certipur-certified
We don't like
  • Takes a while to break in

4.NapYou Amazon Exclusive Pack n Play Mattress

The NapYou Amazon Exclusive is a playard mattress designed with portability in mind.
Weighing slightly over 4 pounds and featuring a tri-fold design, this product is extremely light and compact. But the icing on the cake is the included carry bag that makes it very convenient to transport.
Overall, the mattress measures 37.5 x 26 x 1.5 inches. What’s unique about this design is that the corners have been rounded to ensure that it fits perfectly in your pack n play.
Furthermore, the top of the mattress is fabricated from polyester and cotton. This blend of materials not only makes it soft but also highly durable.
We like
  • Tri-fold, lightweight design for easy carrying
  • The cover is made of cotton and polyester providing comfort and durability
  • Versatile enough to be used with or without a playard
We don't like
  • Tightly-fitted sheets tend to pull the mattress upwards at the corners

5.MamaDooKids Smart Play Yard Mattress

Unfortunately, a lot of mattresses come with plain-white covers, which some find unappealing. If you’d like to add some more color to your toddler’s room, the MamaDooKids Smart Mattress is a great option.
This one comes in not one but four different color patterns: blue, pink, Oreos and silver grey. Recommended for babies aged 0 to 3 years, this mattress also has numerous functions.
Apart from serving as a pack n play mattress, it doubles up as a portable changing station, play mat, padding that can be placed underneath a play gym and a toddler bench. It’s also suitable for a baby’s tummy time.
Measuring 37.5 x 26 x 1.5 inches, this mattress fits nicely in all playard sizes without leaving any gaps. In particular, it’s compatible with these pack n play brands: Graco, Boppy, Chicco, Baby Trend, Safety 1st, Aprica, Cosco among others.
Measuring 37.5 x 26 x 1.5 inches, this mattress fits nicely in all playard sizes without leaving any gaps. In particular, it’s compatible with these pack n play brands: Graco, Boppy, Chicco, Baby Trend, Safety 1st, Aprica, Cosco among others.
Based on multiple tests carried out, it was verified that the Smart Play Yard Mattress conforms to standards of emissions, performance, content, durability and environmental stewardship.
We like
  • Available in a variety of colors
  • Fit for an array of pack n plays
  • Use as playard mattress, toddler bench or changing station
  • It’s CertiPUR-certified
We don't like
  • Comes with a strong odor; should be air-dried before use

Best Pack n Play Mattress Brands

Dream On Me

This company is committed to manufacturing and supplying a wide range of baby products.
Established in 1995, Dream On Me is a family-owned venture that’s mainly known for its high-quality cribs and mattresses. However, they also make strollers, high chairs, car seats, playpens, and nursery bedding.
With every product they make, the company portrays their professional expertise, vast experience and their strict compliance with the set safety standards.

Sproutwise Kids

This is another brand you can rely on for a premium-grade playard mattress. Sproutwise Kids doesn’t make a variety of baby equipment as they’re relatively new in the market.
That said, this company is one to watch as they have already made a name for themselves with the few products they’ve manufactured.
Also, this company has a very charitable spirit. They donate 5% of their profits to charity organizations. Since 2015, they have donated nearly $2000.

Milliard

Milliard has a long history in the baby products segment. This brand grew from a small-sized family venture to a large corporation that exists today.
Generally, the company has diversified its operations to a variety of household products which include pet supplies, bedding, personal care, and baby products. However, they’re most prominent for their exceptional baby mattresses that place an emphasis on safety.

NapYou

NapYou specializes in two product categories: baby mattresses and pillows. Both of these are highly-rated, receiving dozens of positive reviews from buyers.
Their Pack n Play mattress is particularly useful as it provides extreme comfort and support. Featuring organic cotton and polyester construction, you’re guaranteed that your baby will rest peacefully without experiencing any irritation.

MamaDoo Kids

With numerous awards under their belt, MamaDoo Kids is a force to be reckoned with. They make numerous baby products ranging from mattresses to toppers, sleep mats, and sheets.
The good thing about MamaDoo Kids products is that they’re all certified. So much so that they’ve been featured by the Center for Environmental Health in one of their studies on flame retardant products.
Another pleasant thing about this company is that they work closely with the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). Part of the revenue and profits they earn from their products goes to funding NAMI operations.
FAQs

Is a playard mattress that important?

Soon-to-be moms spend days, even months, choosing the perfect playard and the most adorable-looking bedding for their newborns. But often, the mattress is an afterthought, and it’s bought at the last minute.
What these individuals forget is that while the ocean-themed sheets are fun to look at, the mattress is what determines how comfortable the sleeping surface is.
And considering how much time your baby will spend in the playard for the initial 3 to 5 years, it’s vital that you purchase a high-quality mattress.

Do all playard mattresses come in one size?

The Federal government has set standards for manufacturers of baby mattresses to comply with. Any mattress designed for newborns and infants should have a minimum size of 27.25 x 51.625 inches with a thickness of no more than 6 inches.
As long as the manufacturer adheres to the stipulated size, they can construct different-sized mattresses. So, it all boils down to the amount of space available in your pack n play.

How can I distinguish a high-quality foam mattress from a low-quality one?

If you’re looking to buy a playard mattress made of foam, there are a few factors you should watch out for:
  • Total weight/density – overall, the heavier the mattress, the better it is
  • Firmness – a good foam mattress for your infant should be firmer than a standard crib mattress
  • Good reviews of the specific mattress and not the manufacturer

What can I do with a playard mattress when my child outgrows it?

Unfortunately, recycling plants are yet to start accepting playard and crib mattresses. In the meantime, here are a few tips on how to reuse it:
  • Donate it to a local shelter – you can call a shelter organization in your area and find out if they accept mattress donations.
  • Create a cozy reading fort- even if your toddler is too big to sleep on it, they can use it for sitting while they read their favorite books
  • Use it to make a bench or daybed
  • Transform it to a dog bed

Final Thoughts

Deciding to purchase a pack n play is a good idea. But it’s not complete until you buy a compatible playard mattress.
There are tons of mattresses designed for newborns and infants but only a few of these can be used in playards. This is because a pack n play mattress should have certain attributes. For one, it should be thinner than a standard crib mattress so that it fits. It should also be firm, especially if you’re getting it for a newborn.
Based on our research, Dream On Me Pack n Play mattress is well worth the investment. It’s 3 inches thick, providing just the right amount of support. It’s also designed from foam; hence very comfortable for toddlers.
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