Trying to decide whether a bassinet vs crib is right for your newborn baby?
Both options are safe and comfortable beds for babies, but which is right for you: bassinet or crib?
Sleep safety is a crucial concern for new parents, so you want to know you’re making all the right choices.
Some parents are all about the bassinet, while others are convinced the crib is the way to go.
Cribs and bassinets are both safe for newborns, but some key differences can help you choose between the two.
In this guide, we’ll talk you through the advantages and disadvantages, differences and similarities, between a crib vs bassinet.
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Bassinet Vs Crib
Let’s start by taking a close look at bassinets and cribs.
All About Bassinets
Bassinets are mini beds that babies use for the first few months of their lives.
Small and compact, the bassinet cradles a newborn until they’re roughly 4 months old, at which point they need to transition to a bigger bed.
The bassinet typically uses a thin, flat mattress for spinal support, and has mesh or fabric sides.
The mattress of the bassinet is raised to waist height, allowing for easy access.
While many bassinets use a simple design, smart bassinets are equipped with new technology to soothe and comfort babies.
Bassinets are a popular choice with parents thanks to their easy maneuverability.
However, they don’t last very long.
By the time your little one can roll over on their own, you’ll need to transition them out of the bassinet.
- Waist high, the bassinet is easy to access, particularly for c-section moms.
- The compact size of the bassinet makes it easier to fit in bedrooms.
- Bassinets are typically lightweight, and reasonably portable.
- The smaller sleeping space of the bassinet can feel cozier for a newborn baby.
- Only suitable until your baby can roll over, the bassinet has limited usage.
- Once your little one has outgrown the bassinet, you’ll need to purchase another bed.
Arm's Reach is a well trusted brand in the bassinet industry, creating quality, functional co-sleepers for parents. And the Cambria is no exception!
You can use the Cambria in two modes; a bedside bassinet, attached to the parent bed or stand-alone bassinet, anywhere you would like to put it.
The drop down mesh side makes for easy access to your baby, whilst features such as the the storage pockets as well as a platform enables you to store essentials close by. Perfect for C section and breastfeeding moms!
This bassinet also comes with everything you need including a mattress, fitted sheet, and a nylon strap, plus most importantly a plate to attach to the adult bed for safety.
All About Cribs
Cribs are small beds designed for babies.
A traditional crib can be used from birth until roughly 2 to 3 years of age.
A crib features high, slatted sides surrounding a rectangular mattress.
Cribs are available in several different styles.
The traditional crib comes in a standardized rectangular shape, is easy to use, and is easy to decorate.
The mini crib is any crib smaller than the traditional crib.
They’re very similar to the standard crib, but fit smaller spaces better.
However, they lack the longevity of the traditional crib.
Convertible cribs are adjustable, and can be changed from cribs, to toddler beds, to other types of furniture.
These cribs have versatility, but tend to be expensive.
Both traditional and mini cribs can be convertible.
- A crib can potentially be used for birth until your child is 3.
- It’s easy to find mattresses and sheets to fit a standard crib.
- Cribs are stable and sturdy.
- There are many different styles of cribs available.
- Cribs are large, and take up a lot of space when you’re sharing a room.
- Once a crib has been assembled, it’s very difficult to move.
If you're looking for a crib and change table combo then the Delta Bentley S crib is an excellent option!
Not only is this Greengaurd gold certified crib made from sustainable New Zealand pine and painted in non-toxic paint, but it is also grows with your child.
The crib mattress can be adjusted to multiple heights, while the crib itself can be converted from a crib to a toddler bed to daybed and even a full-sized bed.
The changer itself features 2 shelves, 2 drawers, and includes a 27.75" x 16" x 1" changing pad (safety strap attached), so there is plenty of room for all your diaper essentials.
Similarities And Differences Between Bassinets And Cribs
The bassinet and the crib are both good options for new parents.
But their different sizes and styles offer both advantages and disadvantages.
Let’s look at these similarities and differences in more detail.
Safety must be the key concern when choosing a bed for a baby, and both the bassinet and the crib are safe to use.
Before purchasing, check that the bassinet and crib have passed independent safety checks, and been approved for sale.
We’ll cover the age range in more depth below, but while the bassinet is safe for newborns, it isn’t safe for babies over 4 months old.
At this point, you’ll need to transition them to a bigger bed.
Sides And Mattress
Similar to safety standards, the bassinet and crib must both include breathable sides, and a flat, firm base.
These features help your little one to breathe safely as they sleep.
All bassinets and cribs should come with these essential safety features.
While some bassinets and cribs do come with a mattress, you might need to purchase one separately (or you might want a spare).
It’s easier to buy a mattress for a traditional crib, as there are so many options available.
Bassinets can be a little harder to outfit.
However, if you try a non-traditional crib, mattress options are even more limited.
One of the major differences between the crib and the bassinet is the size.
The crib is significantly larger than the bassinet, and this has both advantages and disadvantages.
The crib can be used for longer. You can use the crib straight from birth, and thanks to the ample space and sturdy structure, you can keep on using the crib until your child is 2 or 3 years old.
However, the size of the crib can make it hard to keep in the home.
When you’re room sharing for the first 6 months, you simply might not have room for the crib.
And once the heavy crib has been assembled, it’s hard to move.
The bassinet should fit easily into even small homes, and can be kept close to the bed for late night wake-ups.
Lightweight, the bassinet can be moved from room to room with relative ease.
And the smaller sleeping space is often preferred by newborns, as it recreates the cozy feeling of being in the womb.
However, because the bassinet is so small, you can only use it for a limited time.
The second major difference between the bassinet and the crib is age range, and this is closely linked to the size.
The bassinet has a limited age range. A standard bassinet can typically only be used until your child is around 4 months old, or able to roll over by themselves.
At this point, the lightweight bassinet becomes a safety risk.
The crib, on the other hand, has an extensive age range.
You can potentially use the crib from birth, all the way to age 3!
However, the large crib might not always be the best choice from birth.
For a start, it’s hard to fit in a shared room. Second, your little one might not like all the space in the crib!
The mattress of a bassinet is typically raised higher than the mattress of a standard crib.
This makes it easier to lift the baby out of the bed, and to put them back in.
This raised mattress is particularly useful for moms who have had c-sections.
It puts significantly less strain on the body.
Some bassinets are even bedside sleepers, so you can reach your newborn without getting out of bed.
However, some cribs do come with adjustable mattress heights.
These can be raised and lowered depending on the child’s age, and your comfort level.
The bassinet is significantly more portable than the standard crib.
Bassinets are compact and light, so you can pick them up and move them from room to room.
But once a crib is in place, it’s very hard to shift.
While you can move some bassinets around during the day, the crib will probably have to stay where it is.
With that said, some cribs are travel cribs, and come with a lighter frame and wheels.
These are more portable than the standard crib, but not as portable as the bassinet.
Gone are the days when a bed was just a bed! Nowadays, a bassinet or a crib can potentially do so much more!
Bassinets in particular are available with a wealth of upgrades and design features.
Some bassinets can rock and vibrate, others will play calming music, and some can even alert you when your little one wakes up!
These features are all designed to ensure your baby (and you) can sleep better for longer.
However, if you want these features, be prepared to pay more.
Smart cribs are less common than the smart bassinet, but there are some available.
However, if you really want a bed fitted with the latest advances, then consider a bassinet.
You may also like our guide on the best rocking bassinets!
The SNOO Smart sleeper bassinet combines technology, innovation, and comfort to help soothe your baby to sleep!
This automatic rocking bassinet works off an in-built microphone, which in response to your baby’s cries, helps them to sleep with vibrations, movement, and lullabies.
But what sets the SNOO smart sleeper apart from the rest is their compatible app so you can control the bassinet with a simple touch on your phone.
On average, the bassinet is cheaper than the crib.
However, this doesn’t mean it’s automatically the better option for parents on a budget.
If you choose a bassinet, you will need to replace it in just a few months.
The crib, on the other hand, can potentially be used for years.
Final Thoughts On Crib Vs Bassinet
The most important feature when choosing a baby bed is that it’s safe.
Both the crib and bassinet offer a safe sleeping environment for a newborn baby, with breathable panels and a firm mattress.
There’s no right choice when it comes to bassinets and cribs — you have to decide what’s right for you.
The lightweight bassinet is excellent for those first few months, but it lacks longevity.
The crib can be used for longer, but the bulky design is inconvenient for newborns.
We hope this guide has helped you decide between the crib and bassinet, so you and your little one can sleep better!
And if you want to check out any more of our guides, we recommend checking out these guides on best cribs for short moms, best mini cribs, best bassinet for breastfeeding, best bassinet for small spaces, and best bassinet for C section!