image of the graco dream suite bassinet

Best Baby Bassinets (2018) for Newborns, Co-Sleeping, Travel & Affordability! A Snugly Sleeper to Fit Any Need

by Michelle Hand -

A crib might seem like an awfully large place for such a small baby to sleep. And if you are like me, you don’t like the idea of baby being a room away and in such a big baby bed. Enter the bassinet. It gives baby a cozy and convenient place to sleep, especially during those first few months.

But which one do you need? Well that depends on your needs- how long you’ll use it and how you’ll use it. That’s why I’ve poured over the research and picked the best baby bassinets.

I’ve got picks for:

  • Best baby bassinet overall
  • Best newborn bassinet
  • Best co-sleeper bassinet
  • Best travel bassinet
  • Best affordable bassinet

Best Baby Bassinet Overall

HALO Bassinest Swivel Sleeper Premiere

Image of the HALO Bassinest Swivel Sleeper – Premiere Series Bassinet 

Features

This unique bassinet was created to help parents get a close, yet safe sleep setup for their baby. Although the Halo Bassinest Swivel Sleeper Premiere could really be used anywhere, it’s inspired by co sleeping and works fantastic next to the big bed. It can be used until baby reaches 20 pounds or learns to move/roll on their own.

Image of the HALO Bassinest Swivel Sleeper – Premiere Series Bassinet

Here’s how it works. The Halo Bassinest is a small baby bed that sits on a frame/stand. The bed itself has a unique hourglass shape, versus a regular rectangle shape. The sides of the bassinet are a see through mesh and breathable for safety. The top edges are also flexible, so you can pull down the sides for easy access to baby. Edges can of course be locked upright to keep older babies safe.

Image of the HALO Bassinest Swivel Sleeper – Premiere Series Bassinet

You can rotate the bassinet 360° on the frame. This is the best feature. As a 2 time C-section mom, having this would have been fantastic! You can just swivel it put of the way to get in and out of bed, instead of having to awkwardly move around it or trying to move the bassinet.

And another bonus for tired and sore moms- the base of the bassinet fits under the bed. The 4 stable legs are flat to the ground and are only 32 inches long, so it will easily fit under your bed. This brings baby close to you. You can even get the bassinet bed itself to sit on the edge of the bed. The base adjusts to fit beds from 22 to 34 inches, so you can have safe co-sleeping when desired.

Image of the HALO Bassinest Swivel Sleeper – Premiere Series Bassinet

The bed features a flat, albeit comfortable sleeping pad for baby. This pad is free from toxins, JPMA certified, and totally waterproof. It comes with a fitted sheet to fit the unique shape. The sheet is washable, while the rest of the polyurethane bassinet is quickly cleaned with a damp cloth.

Image of the HALO Bassinest Swivel Sleeper – Premiere Series Bassinet

Now for the wonderful soothing features. It has a built in nightlight, vibration, 3 womb and nature sounds, 3 lullabies, complete with volume control and a 30 minute timer with auto shut off. My favorite extra is the nursing timer. You turn it on when you begin feeding, and after 30 minutes, it beeps as a reminder to put baby back in the bassinet. Great for all those late night feeds when you are drowsy.

Ratings and Reviews

  • 4 stars, 47 reviews- Bed Bath & Beyond
  • 4 stars, 48 reviews- BuyBuyBaby
  • 4 stars, 40 reviews- Target
  • 4.5 stars, 139 reviews- Toys R Us

There seems to be a few big complaints with this unit.

First, it’s not easily moved. It’s quite big and pretty heavy (over 40 pounds) so you can’t really haul it from room to room or travel with it. The base is large and bulky. However, it’s meant to be a stationary bed for baby’s first few months.

Second, the mattress has problems. It’s thin and has a slight tilt to it. There’s not a lot of padding or cushion, which freaks some parents out. However, that’s how it should be for safe baby sleep. Babies end up smooshed against one side over and over again. It seems worse with some units than others. In any case, setting the unit on the bed helps quite a bit.

Image of the HALO Bassinest Swivel Sleeper – Premiere Series Bassinet 

Third , it’s an expensive unit. I won’t sugar coat it: this bassinet has a big price tag. However. I think the brand, quality manufacturing, and cool features somewhat justify the price.

Fifth, and finally, it needs a lot of battery juice to run the vibration and sounds. I’m talking batteries every 10 days. So frustrating when paying a lot of money already!

Why It’s Best Overall

Winning the top spot on a list of 6 best baby bassinets is no mean feat. But why do I think that this one is best overall?

Halo is a great brand. I’ve purchased other Halo products and loved them. My son lived in a Halo sleep sack for the first few months of his life. I trust this company to help my baby get some rest.

The swivel feature makes it so convenient for those first couple of months spent in the bed with baby. The collapsable side is an added convenience for this purpose. As a nursing mom, those features and the nursing timer are extremely helpful for the repeated late night feedings.

I like that this has vibration and sounds. I know that there are other units out there with vibration or sounds, but usually not both. You usually only get both in a swing, and they’re for napping only. I like that this is approved for baby to sleep on each and every night.

Image of the HALO Bassinest Swivel Sleeper – Premiere Series Bassinet 

Which leads me to my final point- this thing is so safe! The mesh sides, the thin and firm mattress, and the big, stable base mean that baby can’t possibly get into any trouble. And it makes co-sleeping a safe and wonderful experience.

 

I think that this bassinet offers the best of a lot of worlds at the highest quality, and that’s why I picked it!

 

Best Newborn Bassinet

Graco Dream Suite Bassinet

Image of the Graco Dream Suite Bassinet, Mason 

Newborns have slightly different needs than older babies. They need feedings, fresh diapers, and naps around the clock. So if you are going to invest in a bassinet, why not pick one that helps you meet those incessant needs? Like the Graco Dream Suite Bassinet– it’s a bassinet and changing station all in one.

Features

Graco calls the Dream Suite their complete bedside care center. And that’s fitting.

The first part of this bassinet is the bed. This bassinet can fit kids up to 15 pounds (or 3 months) on the lightweight mattress pad. That’s a lower weight limit than some other bassinets, making it ideal for newborns. Baby stays the right temp thanks to the breathable mesh sides, which also allow for easy viewing by parents. The two speed vibration and canopy will help keep baby sleeping. For an awake baby, there are two plush star toys to look at and even reach for.

Image of the Graco Dream Suite Bassinet, MasonImage of the Graco Dream Suite Bassinet, Mason

The changing portion of the bassinet works for babies all the way up to 30 pounds. This gives this baby gear an extended life beyond the newborn years! The material on the changing station side is easy to wipe clean and won’t absorb liquids.

Switching from one mode to the other is simple. You can flip from the bassinet to the changer using just one hand. Simply squeeze the lever and flip it over. This one handed use is great for holding a baby and doing the switch. And when you’re done, flip it back over. Simple.

Image of the Graco Dream Suite Bassinet, Mason 

Finally, there is a large storage basket underneath that keeps baby’s gear close by. It’s the perfect spot to keep all those extra clothes, diapers,and blankets that you’ll need during the first couple of months.

The whole system lies atop a lightweight frame with lockable wheels. It only measures 42 inches tall by 23.5 inches wide by 35 inches deep, so it’s compact, moveable, and multitasking. Great for small babies and small homes!

Ratings and Reviews

  • 3.8 stars, 71 reviews- BuyBuyBaby
  • 4 stars, 57 reviews- Target
  • 4 stars, 40 reviews- Walmart
  • 4 stars, 173 reviews- Toys R Us

The complaints concerning this bassinet are pretty mild. Most have to do with the mattress and the assembly.

Oh, the mattress pad. It’s thin and hard to clean. You tradeoff a bit of comfort and convenience for some other great features. If the mattress was super fluffy and thick, it wouldn’t be safe for baby sleeping on it, and it would also make flipping this thing over to the bassinet really tricky. Keeping it lightweight means you get to flip it over easily for changing. As for cleaning it, it is in fact a total pain! Hand washing only or machine wash and drip dry is a joke. And only Graco pads fit the mattress, and they’re expensive.

Assembly sucks. Let’s be honest, assembling baby stuff is never easy or fun. But this one takes the cake. Several purchasers literally returned it before use because they couldn’t figure it out. I’m so thankful that we live in an age of youtube how-to videos and google. Because you’ll need both, and a whole lotta common sense, to figure this thing out.

Image of the Graco Dream Suite Bassinet, Mason 

Remember how I talked about how it flips pretty easy. Well, that’s true when flipping from bassinet to changer. Flipping from changer to bassinet is much more difficult and requires 2 hands. You have to push in the lock button and squeeze the lever together, so doing that with a baby in your arms is nearly impossible.

Then there’s the most mild complaint: the bottom storage basket. Users complain that’s it’s super flimsy because it’s made of only fabric. So when you put stuff in, it sags and is really low to the ground. I agree that a good piece of cardboard can remedy this if it truly bothers you.

Best Co-Sleeper Bassinet

Arm’s Reach Concepts Cambria Co-Sleeper Bassinet

Image of the Arm's Reach Concepts Cambria Co-Sleeper Bassinet, Natural 

Co-sleeping is a great idea. It has a ton of health benefits for parents and baby! However, it can be dangerous when bed sharing. Having a co-sleeping bassinet like the Arm’s Reach Concepts Cambria gives you the best of both worlds- the benefits of co-sleeping with the safety benefits of baby’s own space. Plus, this stylish bassinet has lots of great features, like storage and a mesh drop-down side.

Features

Can I start with a silly feature? I love the look of this bassinet. It doesn’t look babyish and cheap. It looks sturdy, well-made, and is even gender neutral! Also, you can use this bassinet until baby reaches about 5 months, since the sides are a lot taller than other models.

But to the meat and potatoes. The bassinet itself is made from wood headboard and footboard and thick mesh sides. One of these sides can be dropped almost all the way down down for easy access from the bed. This is so nice for breastfeeding mamas because they can grab baby quickly for a nighttime feed. Since all sides go up, it can be used as a freestanding bassinet.

Image of the Arm's Reach Concepts Cambria Co-Sleeper Bassinet, Natural 

And if you want to use it as a co-sleeper, which you will, you can drop the side all the way down. You can set the co-sleeper next to mattresses from 24 inches to 30 inches using the extendable legs that move in 2 inch increments. This makes the co-sleeper flush with your mattress, depending on what setting you use. You can secure the co-sleeper to the bed using the included straps and plate that go under the adult mattress. Baby will be right next to you, but still safely in their own bed.

The bassinet includes a baby mattress and a soft, washable sheet. The mattress included is more like a playard mattress-thin and firm. Besides that, it features lockable wheels and a separated storage basket underneath with the same dimensions as the bassinet, which is about 31 inches by 20 inches.

Ratings and Reviews

  • 4.9 stars, 28 reviews- Target
  • 4.8 stars, 8 reviews- Wayfair
  • 4.5 stars, 10 reviews- Overstock

Number one complaint: the mattress.

It’s a thin mattress. A lot of people dislike the included mattress and sheet, saying that they just aren’t comfortable. And that’s because it’s a small, 1 inch thick mattress. And it’s not the softest of foams. Picky babies may not sleep on it’s hard surface.

However, Arm’s Reach sells a ton of different mattresses and sheets that are compatible with the Cambria Co-Sleeper, so just invest in a different mattress if you feel that baby is uncomfortable.

Image of the Arm's Reach Concepts Cambria Co-Sleeper Bassinet, Natural

The other two complaints are so very minor.

The first is the bottom basket. Like other bassinets, the storage compartment is made from fabric only, and as such is a bit flimsy. With this model, since the basket is tied on with straps, it can slide down or fall off when it gets heavy. Just something to be aware of

And finally, let’s talk about the little ledge. Since the mesh side doesn’t fold all the way completely down, there is a little ledge from the side that is there. This can be tricky, depending on how tall your bed is. No matter what, you can’t have one seamless surface from the baby’s mattress to yours. So if you are expecting that, you’ll be disappointed when you see the little 4 or 5 inch side sticking up.

Best Travel Bassinet

Chicco Lullago Travel Crib

Image of the Chicco LullaGo Bassinet, Grey Mist 

I chose not to include the travel bassinet that don’t have legs or a base. Lullyboo makes a great travel bassinet, but it has to go on the ground. That’s both uncomfortable and insanitary, if you ask me! My favorite travel bassinet is the Chicco Lullago Travel Crib. It’s simple, light, easy to carry, and reasonably priced.

Features

There really isn’t a whole lot to talk about when it comes to this portable bassinet. The bassinet is made for babies up to 20 pounds and is simple in design.

Image of the Chicco Lullago Travel Crib, Chestnut

The bed itself has a soft, padded mattress with removable and washable sheets and mattress pad. The mattress pad zips off for easy access and washing. The side panels of the bed are a tough material with see-through mesh panels near baby’s face. And that’s about it for the bed part.

Image of the Chicco Lullago Travel Crib, Chestnut

The bassinet itself can be disassembled within 1 minute. The top part of the bed is one piece and the legs snap on and off easily. The top part folds in half and can be carried with the legs inside the awesome carrying bag.

That’s all that this portable bassinet can do! There’s no toys, storage, canopy, or other bells and whistles. And that’s okay. Travel bassinets don’t need to be fancy, but they do need to be light, easy to assemble, and convenient to carry. This checks all those boxes. And at one of the lowest prices on this list, this high quality travel bassinet from Chicco is a winner.

Ratings and Reviews

  • 4.1 stars, 68 reviews- Bed Bath & Beyond
  • 4.5 stars, 120 reviews- Target
  • 4.5 stars, 44 reviews- Toys R Us

With not a lot of features, there can’t be a lot to complain about, right? Right! That’s why it’s consistently rated over 4 stars across the board.

The sheets and the travel bag are big sources of frustration.

The sheets that fit it are very unique in size and shape. You can try any brand of sheet or mattress pad and it just won’t fit. Since the sheet that comes with is a thin one and isn’t waterproof, you’ll want to figure out some solution if your baby uses this more than occasionally.

Image of the Chicco Lullago Travel Crib, Chestnut 

The travel bag is awesome if you’re just going to a friend’s house or taking a car trip somewhere. But for flying or frequent travel, it’s less than perfect. The bag has no top closure and the legs don’t fit inside entirely. Checking this at an airport would be a nightmare. The bag needs a few more inches and a zipper.

 

 

 

Best Affordable Bassinet

Dream on Me Karley Bassinet

Image of the Dream On Me Karley Bassinet, Aqua Blue 

Features

This is an extremely lightweight bassinet and weighs only 14 pounds. The Dream on Me Karley Bassinet is designed for babies up to 3 months and 25ish pounds (see complaints below). It has a small footprint because it’s dimensions are only 35.5 inches high by 18.3 inches wide by 47 inches deep.

Image of the Dream On Me Karley Bassinet, Aqua Blue

The bassinet itself is a comfortable sleeping area for your baby. The bottom is covered by a 1 inch mattress that’s pretty firm. And while small, it meets ASTM/CPSC standards. The sides of the sleeping area are made from a polyester foam fabric and a see-through mesh. The top of the bassinet is covered by an adjustable canopy that zips in the middle. The canopy is made from both solid panels and mesh panels. This provides great protection from sun, bugs, or pets.

Image of the Dream On Me Karley Bassinet, Aqua Blue 

The frame, which is a lightweight aluminum, can fold down to nearly flat for easy storage or moving. All the casters lock into place, so when you do set up this bassinet, you know it still safe. The frame also has a unique shape and design which allows you to gently rock your baby.

As a final consideration, there’s a small storage basket underneath. It’s not very big, but it’s enough to keep maybe a spare blanket a couple of diapers, and an outfit change.

The price of this bassinet might be the best part. It costs half of what a lot of other models cost. This is great, since nearly all bassinets have such a short life span. Why spend a lot for a product that you’ll only use for about 3 months? Overall, this bassinet is lightweight, easy to use and fold, come in very cute colors, and is downright inexpensive.

Ratings and Reviews

  • 4.2 stars, 22 reviews- Kohl’s
  • 4 stars, 58 reviews- Toys R Us
  • 4 stars, 7 reviews- Walmart

The mattress is what keeps this product from being 5 stars. That and some confusing advertising.

Image of the Dream On Me Karley Bassinet, Aqua Blue

Like so many other bassinets, the Karley Bassinet doesn’t come with a top notch mattress. The 1 inch thick foam mattress included with this bassinet will probably leave you and baby wanting. You can find other mattresses that are the same dimensions, which is about 34 by 18. In any case, you’ll probably have to do something to make the inside slightly more comfortable for baby.

Weight limits are confusing with this model of bassinet. If you go to the manufacturer’s website, they state that it can hold a baby up to 25 pounds. This information is mimicked on the Amazon website, where one description says 25 pounds, and the other description says 15 pounds. Then, there’s a bunch of users that have reported that their mattress has a warning label that explicitly states that it can only be used until baby reaches 10 pounds.

So which is it? I would go with whatever information is on the actual product you receive. After looking at all of these reviews and this product on different websites, 25 pounds seems to be the consensus. In any case, you can only use it for a baby up to 3 months anyways. Just use your judgement to keep baby safe and secure.

And one last thing- both sides of canopy have to be up at the same time. This is frustrating if you want to allow baby to be able to see while still blocking some light. This two-sided, middle zip design is great for the outdoors, or for keeping nosey pets out of baby’s way, but it is a pain to zip up. You really have to stretch the material to get it to zip.

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Michelle Hand
Michelle Hand is the mom of a very busy preschooler and a sweet new baby! She splits her time between writing and hanging out with her family. Her degree in Business has helped her hone her research and writing skills. She loves helping new moms find the best products. When she has some free time, she likes hiking, singing and playing piano, reading, and taking her dog for walks.

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