A baby fence is perfect for keeping your little one in a safe place when they start crawling, walking, and exploring anything that they can get their hands on. Baby fences, sometimes called play yards or playpens, are also great for safety on the go. Below, we’ll take a look at the best baby fence to keep your little one safe.
Best Baby Fences
Regalo 192-Inch Gate
The Regalo 192-Inch Gate is great as a multi-purpose gate. It comes with a 4-pack of wall mounts so you can put it across rooms or large doorways, but it can also be used as a freestanding enclosure for your little one.
The entire length of the individual panels is 192-inches and the fence stands 28″tall. There are eight individual panels. These have a bar-like design. The openings are small enough that your child is not going to get their head stuck and it is harder for them to climb the fence because there are not as many footholds.
This best baby gate is made of steel instead of plastic and can be used indoors or outdoors. The lock to open the baby gate has two easy steps. While this makes it convenient for parents to open, the two steps are fairly easy and toddlers may be able to figure out how to get out of the enclosure.
Something you’ll want to note if you plan to use this indoors is that there are no grips on the bottom. Once your child is walking and pushing things around, they could easily push these panels if they’re not used with the wall mounts. You can make modifications yourself like using double-sided sticky tape or fastening grips to the bottom so it’s not so easy to move, especially on hard floors.
Finally, these panels are nice because they can be used individually or together. You can use them to keep your little one in or you can use them to block off dangerous areas like the laundry room or your fireplace. The one downside is that this is not the best if you are looking for something portable. While the panels are light and easy enough to carry, the plastic joints that hold everything together can be a hassle to assemble and disassemble.
- Panels can be used as a baby gate or to make a baby fence
- Can be used indoors or outdoors
- Not easy for toddlers to climb over
- Easy to open
- Long enough to block off half a room or an extended doorway
- Comes with wall mounts if they’re needed
- No grips on the bottom so the gate can be pushed around
- Not easy to put up and take down if you’re doing it a lot
Toddleroo 3 in 1 Superyard
The Toddleroo 3 in 1 Superyard is 144″ long and comes with separate panels so it can be used as a baby gate, play yard, or barrier. When used as a play area, it offers 10 square feet of space for your baby to explore.
For babies that are climbers, parents will appreciate that this is a little taller than the others mentioned so far, being 30″ tall. Each panel is designed with bars, so there also aren’t any areas of the gate that your baby can climb onto.
This is a great choice because of its versatility. It can be used freestanding as an enclosure or used with mounting hardware. The mounting hardware works with angled walls and extra-tall baseboards. Additionally, if you need a longer space, more panels are available for purchase.
One downside of this is that you cannot customize it to fit with the included hardware if you need an odd number of panels. The included hardware only works with an even number, so it won’t work in some spaces unless you buy an additional mounting kit from the company. Users who have needed the extra piece report that it’s expensive for being a small piece of hardware and hard to source because they had to contact the company directly.
One of the benefits of this model is that it has grips on the bottom of the enclosure, so it stops your little one from pushing it across the floor. It also has a door in the middle of the set up with a double-locking system that is easy for parents, but more difficult for your little one to open.
The heavy-duty design on this is great for withstanding abuse from toddlers, however, it is more stable in smaller sections than when used to span across an entire room. This works well for indoor or outdoor use, but it’s not as easy to assemble and take apart like some other options, which means it isn’t as portable.
- 30″ tall
- Has bars that are harder for kids to climb
- Built durable
- Grips on the bottom to improve stability
- Customizable to different functions and spaces
- Lock is easy for adults but hard for toddlers
- Can be used indoors or outdoors
- Not as stable in long sections
- Need additional hardware to use an odd number of panels
Best Baby Gate Play Yards
Evenflo Play Space
The Evenflo Play Space is ideal for kids ages 6 months up to 2 years. It has 18.5 square feet of space inside and has a unique hinge design that makes it easy to set up without any extra tools. If you need more space, you can also purchase a 2-panel extension for this fence.
If you’re looking for a baby fence for outdoors and indoors, this is a great choice. The 6 panels each stand 28″ tall which is adequate for keeping baby inside. In addition to being lightweight and portable, the fence is UV and weather-resistant. This prevents wear and tear when used in bright sunlight.
The legs are also customized for being used indoors or outdoors. When you’re inside, anti-movement non-scratch floor pads keep the baby gate stable and prevent it from damaging the floors. Outside, the legs can be reversed to reveal outdoor stakes that add stability when the baby fence is set up on the lawn. You can easily move the gate from place to place using the foldable molded handle.
Another benefit of the way this is designed is that any panel can be used as a doorway. Parents can squeeze near the top of the hinge and open any of the doors. Even though parents can unlock this with one hand, it’s too difficult for kids to squeeze.
This baby play yard is available in white, gray, and multi-color. The gray pictured here is nice because it doesn’t show dirt as well. Being made of plastic, this is also easy to clean if you prefer white. The colored option is great for providing visual stimulation for your little one.
One thing to note is that while this is sturdy when assembled as a hexagon, it loses stability if you add extra panels. This is especially true if you change the shape. As your baby starts climbing, they can also tip this over if they hook their feet into the gate and use the holes to scale it.
- Available in several colors
- Sturdy when assembled as a hexagon
- Option to purchase additional panels for more room
- Any panel can be used as a door
- Anti-slip pads for indoor use
- Lawn stakes for outdoor use
- Portable and has a carrying handle
- Easy to clean
- Loses stability with extra panels or when assembled in a different shape than a hexagon
- Older toddlers may be able to climb it
Skip Hop Gate
The Skip Hop Gate is a little different than the traditional baby fence because of its mesh panels. The mesh panels are completely covered, so you don’t have to worry about babies climbing or getting their limbs stuck in them. This enclosure is recommended for babies ages 6 months and older.
There are wall mounts included with this so it can be used free-standing or to create a barrier. The mesh panels are printed but still see-through, so you can keep an eye on your baby while they play (and they can look out at you). They are stretched over steel, which makes the entire baby playpen durable but lightweight.
This playpen comes in a cool gray color and has a print of white, fluffy clouds. As an added bonus, it comes with a detachable clip-on play surface. It is like a big, thick playmat that hangs down and has features like a rattle bead spinner, cloud teether, singing bird toy, plush cloud with satin ribbons, light-up raindrop, shooting star clicking mover, and a reflective sun mirror.
To lock the playpen, you simply lift up at one of the hinges and pull the gate off from the top. The hinge allows the doorway to fold outward. This is easy for parents to open but harder for kids to figure out.
Something that is nice about this best baby playpen is that it’s very sturdy. Kids will have a time lifting it up and tipping it over. Additionally, there is no way to slide under it and it doesn’t have any bars that could be stood on to climb the baby gate.
Since this is made from fabric, it should not be used outdoors. Additionally, while this is easy to assemble, it’s more difficult to take apart. This means once you put it up, you may want to leave it up or have someone help you if you decide you need to move it.
- Mesh panels allow baby and parent to see each other
- Pretty design compared to chunky or plain baby fences
- Hard to lift up and tip over
- Nowhere for your baby to climb
- Mesh and steel design is very durable
- Comes with cute toy panel
- Easy for adult to unlatch the door
- Not as portable as some other options
- Not recommended for outdoor use
8 Panel Play Yard
The 8 Panel Play Yard is really sturdy compared to some other plastic baby playpens because it uses iron reinforcements to stop the plastic from bending when your toddler pushes on it. It is made using bright primary colors and also has an activity panel inside so your child has extra enjoyment in their pen.
One of the things I’ve found with playpens for my child is that if they’re entertained with toys, they’re less likely to fidget with the hinges, locks, and anything else they can get their hands on. The toy panel in this features things like a house with a sliding door, rollerballs, and a phone with a rotary dial. The bright blue, red, and yellow that makes up the design is also visually engaging.
This Costzon playpen is a little shorter than some of the metal options, coming up to just 23.5″. However, it’s still tall enough that your child won’t be able to climb out. There are also rubber suction cups on the bottom, which stops your child from easily sliding the structure around when it’s on the floor. Something to note is that the suction cups could be designed better. They may come off and they only work on hard surfaces like tile or hardwood floors.
There are 8 individual panels for this and you can configure it in a wide variety of shapes and sizes. You can use all 8 pieces or as little as 4 pieces. The pieces slide together easily, which makes it great for travel because it’s easy to set up and take back apart. Additionally, the smooth plastic wipes clean easily and doesn’t have any sharp edges that will hurt your little one.
The door on this swings open because of the hinges. It also has a safety lock that your child will not be able to open. Something to note is that most parents report needing two hands to unlock the enclosure, so this isn’t the best baby gate if you’re looking for something you can open single-handed.
- Can be arranged in a wide variety of shapes and sizes
- Good for traveling because assembly is easy
- Bright primary colors are visually stimulating
- Toy panel is fun for a child to play with
- Smooth plastic is safe and wipes clean easily
- Hinged door swings open easily
- Iron reinforcements that add stability to the plastic
- Baby lock is hard to undo with one hand
- Suction cups do not grip the floor well
Playpen Activity Centre
The Playpen Activity Centre comes with 14 panels so there are a lot of options for configuring this in different shapes. The multi-color pastel panels are nice to look at and this comes with an activity wall that your child can play with.
While the panels are interchangeable, this works best when assembled as a rectangle. It has anti-slip technology on the bottom that helps a little with providing resistance when your child pushes it around. If you have a child that can easily undo locks, this is a good choice. Some parents even report needing both of their hands to unlock the gate.
There are two downsides to this playpen. First, while the anti-skid pieces on the bottom are important for making the playpen more stable, they can also come loose. Since these are small and can be a choking hazard, you may want to glue them in place. Another issue is the gaps between the panels. While your child’s arm probably won’t get stuck in most areas, the space between the panels is large enough for your child’s arm to slide through.
One of the benefits of this is that it can be set up or taken down in around 15 minutes. It’s a great choice for taking on the go, especially because the plastic is easy to clean. Additionally, the plastic has smooth edges so you don’t have to worry about your little one getting scratched or cut if they fall against it.
- Fun, colorful design
- Comes with a play panel
- Gate is hard for kids to open
- Anti-slip technology prevents your child from moving it a lot
- Easy to set up and take down
- Plastic is non-toxic and has rounded edges
- Great for travel
- Easy to clean
- Child’s arm can get caught between the panels
- Anti-slip pads are choking hazard and may need to be glued on
Superyard 8 Panel Play Yard
The Superyard 8 Panel Play Yard is a great choice if you’re looking for something portable that can be used inside and outside. It folds up quickly and easily, has a quick setup time, and comes with a carrying strap that makes it easier to tote around.
If you don’t want something white that stains easily or boring in color, this is also a good choice because it features bright, visually stimulating colors. This is versatile because you can choose to use fewer panels, either 6 or 8 of them. There is also an option to buy the mounting kit separately, which is useful if there is a doorway in your home you need to be blocked off.
This is also versatile because it can be used indoors or outdoors. They are designed weather-resistant, so they will not break down with exposure to the sun. Toddleroo also makes a Folding ABC Play Mat that you can purchase separately if you want your child to have a softer surface in the bottom of their playpen. This is especially useful for toddlers learning to walk because they might fall down and for tummy time.
The bottoms of the panels have non-slip pads that help slow your baby, especially if they try to push the gate around. It’s made of durable plastic that is smooth, making it safe and easy to clean. This is a roomy play area, giving over 33 square feet of playing space.
Any of the panels can be used as a door with this playpen. You just lift up on it and detach the panels from each other and then it swings outward. The downside of this is that you need two hands because it can be hard to pull apart.
This also is not especially heavy. While this is good for carrying it around, your baby may be able to lift up one side while pushing on the other. It’s still hard to push over and you can make it more stable by putting one of the sides against a wall or a piece of furniture.
- Bright, visually stimulating colors
- Weather-resistant for indoor or outdoor use
- Easy to assemble and take back apart
- Comes with a carrying strap
- Option to buy extras like panels, mounting kit, or playmat
- Non-slip pads on the bottom
- Easy to clean
- Need two hands to open the door
- Not especially heavy if your child tries to lift it up
The Best Baby Fences Compared
The table below compares only the recommended products on this page. A low or high Price means it is low or high compared to the other products listed. The Popularity Score reflects how often readers click on and buy the product. The Quality Score is our assessment of the overall performance and satisfaction with the product compared to others in the table.
|8 Panel Play Yard||$$$$||3.9|
|Skip Hop Baby Gate||$$$$||7.7||9.4|
|Baby Playpen Activity Centre||$$$$||8.5||9.2|
|Superyard Colorplay 8 Panel Baby Play Yard||$$$||8.9||9.2|
|Regalo 192-Inch Baby Gate||$$$||9.8||9.2|
|Evenflo Versatile Play Space||$$||9.9||9.4|
|Toddleroo 3 in 1 Metal Superyard||8.4||9.6|
How We Selected the Best Baby Fence
The overall size of the baby fence is the area that is inside. Some play areas are larger and others are designed more compact.
While having lots of room to play can be fun for your baby, you’ll want to be sure the fence is not so big that you can’t comfortably place it in your living room, kitchen, or anywhere else you want to set it.
If you are looking for something primarily for travel or to be placed in a smaller home like an apartment, then a smaller baby fence might be the best idea.
There are several components you’ll want to look at as you consider the design of the gate.
First, you’ll want to be sure the gate is at least 22″ tall so that your child can’t climb over it. You’ll also want to avoid putting toys inside that your child can stack and climb on top of in an attempt to get out of the fence.
When looking under, you want to be sure the space between the floor and the bottom of the gate is less than 3″. If there is too much room, there’s a risk your child will get their head, neck, or another body part stuck trying to crawl out.
Finally, look at the spaces between the metal or plastic that makes up the gate. Check for small areas where fingers and toes might get stuck. Additionally, look for spaces that are big enough for arms, legs, or even heads to get stuck in.
Keep in mind it’s difficult to find a gate that is perfect. You’ll want to keep an ear on your child so you can respond if any body parts do get stuck.
One of the nice things about baby fences is that they are freestanding. Usually, baby fences come with several panels that connect to each other so you can make a roomy area where your child can play. These might attach to each other, but they usually can be folded over.
If you want to get the most out of your baby fence, it should be easy to move around. This will let you use it in any room of the house, so you can keep your baby close when you’re doing chores or making dinner without worrying about them sneaking out of the room or getting in trouble. If it’s portable, you can also take it outdoors to keep your baby contained while they enjoy the outdoors.
Additionally, portability can be useful for visiting friends and family. If you want something that can be brought along for visits, be sure the dimensions of the folded or stacked panels are small enough to fit in your vehicle’s trunk.
Since most baby fences are freestanding, you’ll be able to use them on any flat surface. This makes them good for carpeting, hard floors, grass, and even concrete.
To get the most out of your baby fence, you’ll want something that can be used indoors and outdoors. The biggest factor is going to be the materials used. Wood, steel, and plastic are all common materials for baby fences that will withstand the elements.
Of course, you’ll want to put the baby fence away after each use to avoid rusting and other damage that can happen after being exposed to the elements.
To use outdoors on a hard surface like concrete, you may also want to lay down a mat or blankets to be sure your baby doesn’t get injured.
On one hand, you want the locking mechanism to be easy enough to operate that you can easily get to your child when you need to. However, you don’t want your baby to play with it and get out when you’re not around to keep an eye on them.
The best lock for a baby gate is going to be outside of the panel. Your baby won’t be able to access it as easily. Most parents prefer one-handed locks because they’re easier to open, but this isn’t always an option.
Sturdiness and Safety
As you compare different options, one of the most important factors is safety. You’ll want a baby fence that will keep your little one safe. This means it should be sturdy enough to withstand your baby pulling themselves up on it or hanging on it.
You’ll also want to look for features like rounded edges because these won’t hurt your child as much if they fall against them. Be wary of areas that might pinch small fingers and be sure the lock is secure enough you can leave your baby inside unattended without worrying about them getting out.
Like most baby products, baby fences must meet certain standards regarding safety. Even so, knowing what to look for helps you recognize fences that may not be safe. This is also helpful for shopping second-hand for checking potential problem areas.
Finally, if you are going to shop secondhand at yard sales or secondhand stores, make sure to look for recalls on the baby fence you’re looking at before making a decision.
Something else that affects how easy a baby fence is to use is how easily it can be put up or taken down. If you plan on using the baby fence primarily in one room of your home, you may not need something that is quick to assemble. However, if you want something you can move to different rooms or take outside, or while visiting, you won’t want to struggle every time you need to use it.
FAQs – Baby Fences
What is the difference between a baby fence and a baby gate?
The major difference between baby fences and gates is the hardware. Baby gates typically use pressure-mounted hardware. You position them between two hard surfaces (like the sides of a doorway or the top of a staircase). The pressure holds the gate in place. People with high baseboards or angled walls may need a special mounting setup.
Baby fences create an enclosure for your child. They use hardware-mounted gates attached to one another. Usually, these also have one of the panels that serve as a doorway. Most doorways have a lock that is not easily opened by children.
When should I use a baby fence?
Baby fences are ideal for any time you need to keep your little crawler or walker contained.
If you are playing outdoors, a baby fence can give them a safe place to feel the grass and get fresh air without you needing to keep a constant eye on them. When you visit friends and family members, a baby fence gives your child somewhere safe to play even though their home probably isn’t baby-proofed. It’s even useful in your own home, especially if you are making dinner or doing chores and want to have your baby in the same room but out of harm’s way.
You can also use a baby fence to keep your baby away from potential dangers. Family pets are great with kids, however, they can still be dangerous. They jump and scratch and can unintentionally hurt your little one. Older siblings also usually mean well but can harm your baby if they don’t know how to play safely.
Are playpens and baby fences safe to use?
Like all things, baby fences and playpens are safe to use in moderation. They are an effective parenting tool when you want your baby to have the freedom to play safely. This is especially useful when you are doing chores around the house or socializing in the backyard and don’t want to risk your little one sneaking away or getting into something dangerous.
Of course, having a safe space to play shouldn’t replace parent interaction. Even when you’re busy, you’ll want to make plenty of time to talk and sing to, play with, and make faces at your little one.
To be sure the baby fence you choose can be used safely, read manufacturer instructions carefully. Make sure the gate is steady after you’ve assembled it. Additionally, look for any damaged or broken pieces, sharp edges, or anything else that could harm your little one.
Taking precautions helps keep your little one safe. You should also check on them regularly while they are in the playpen.