Best Baby Cribs in 2017 – Round-up of Top Models

The crib is among the most expensive baby furniture responsible parents will buy for their newborn babies. Many of the best baby cribs have price tags reaching up to a thousand dollars, if not more, depending on the type of materials used and the features included.

When you come to think about the crucial importance of choosing a safe, durable and functional crib, you will likely spend money on it. Keep in mind that a crib isn’t just your baby’s bed – it’s also his safe haven, a place where he will soon play by himself and interact with the people in his life. You must then choose a crib where, indeed, he will be safe, secure and happy whether he’s awake or asleep.

But choosing from among the best baby cribs isn’t all there is to the matter. You must also adopt crib safety measures so as to your baby safe and sound while in his crib. You want to reduce the risks, for example, of strangulation from cords, choking from small objects, and pinching from slats for your baby.

Here then is our basic guide to the best baby cribs, as well as crib safety measures as recommended by baby safety experts. You final choice from among these cribs will obviously be yours to make but we hope that, no matter your choice in a crib, you will choose to adopt the crib safety measures.

Safest Baby Cribs for Your Invaluable Small Ones

1. DaVinci Kalani 4-in-1 Convertible Crib with Toddler Rail

The DaVinci brand of baby furniture is well-known among parents and baby experts as among the best. Their cribs, for example, are known for compliance with the standards set by the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA), ASTM, and the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). This is true for the Kalani 4-in-1 Convertible Crib, made of durable New Zealand pine wood.

You may find its high-end price tag a turn-off, especially when you have a modest budget, but its versatility is a major selling point. As its name implies, you will get four types of baby furniture in a single piece, namely, a baby crib, a day bed, a toddler bed, and a full-sized bed. Think of it as a crib that will grow with your baby, so to speak, so you will get the best value for your money.

But for the 4-in-1 conversion to happen, you have to separately purchase the toddler bed and adult conversion kits.

What's Great About It: The beautiful wood is a plus because it blends in well with most nursery themes. We also love the convertibility of the crib from a newborn crib to an adult bed, thus, changing its weight capacity from 50 to 500 pounds. You will also like the ease of assembly, whether it’s a baby crib or an adult bed.

2. Dream On Me Carson Classic 3-in-1 Convertible Crib

Yet another convertible crib is the Carson Classic, a crib made of premium pine wood. You can easily convert it from a baby’s crib, then to a toddler’s day bed and a full-sized kid’s bed using the tools included. You will love the safety features, too, such as the non-collapsible design, dual hood design, and safety locking wheels.

Older babies tend to bite on the rails of their cribs so the Carson Classic has safe teething surfaces for them. But be sure to keep it clean and to check it regularly to ensure that it’s still safe to bite on.

What's Great About It: We like the three-level mattress support, a convenient feature for parents who want the ease of adjusting the height of the mattress depending on the baby’s height and age. But you may be puzzled about the non-standard size of the mattress – 29 inches against 27.2 inches, the more common size – especially when it comes to changing it.

3. Union 3-in-1 Convertible Crib

Parents are well-advised to look for the JPMA, ASTM and CPSC certifications, the marks of a product’s overall safety, durability and quality. This 3-in-1 convertible crib features all of these certifications, too, thanks to the use of non-toxic materials including the wood and finish. These standards are in place because babies can easily find themselves in trouble even when in the crib, such as when their little limbs become caught between the slats.

You will find the four fully adjustable mattress levels a convenient feature. You can adjust the mattress’ height level depending on your baby’s size, age and height. You may, for example, have it at the highest level when he’s a newborn and at the lowest level when he’s a toddler.

What's Great About It: We like that it has a sturdy construction and classic design that can withstand years of use. You will find it easy to assemble – many parents say it can be assembled within 30 minutes using basic tools and skills. You have to but the conversion kits separately but these are well worth the added expense.

​4. Stork Craft Portofino 4-in-1 Fixed Side Convertible

Baby furniture including a crib, changing table, and cabinet with several drawers can take up a large space in the nursery. With this Portofino crib, fortunately, parents can maximize their nursery space and enjoy the benefits of a convertible crib.

Just think about its multipurpose functionality to understand why we included it here. The crib already has a matching storage cabinet and changing station, thus, eliminating the need to buy separate pieces. The 3-drawer cabinet can be used in storing your baby’s essential items while the diaper changing station has a waterproof vinyl cover.

Plus, your baby has a convertible crib that can be used as his bed when he’s a toddler and a full-sized bed when he’s older. You will even like the 3-level adjustable mattress.

What's Great About It: We like that it’s a three-in-one baby furniture – crib, cabinet attachment, and changing table – so it’s a great choice for smaller nurseries. But there’s a catch to the cabinet-attached-to-the-crib design since it can be challenging to change its layout to fit the nursery’s existing space.

​5. Stork Craft Tuscany 4-in-1 Convertible Crib

The Tuscany comes in several color choices, namely, black, white, cherry, and grey, so parents can make a choice based on the nursery’s main colors. This is a similar crib to the Portofino but without the attached 3-drawer cabinet and changing table, thus, the more affordable price.

Still, this is a crib that you will have no hesitation about letting your baby use until he’s a teenager. The solid pinewood material ensures its durability while its solid construction provides longevity, a must considering that it can be converted from a crib to a full-sized adult bed. The conversion kits should be purchased separately although the basic kit already comes with a toddler bed rail.

What's Great About It: We like the non-collapsible design of the crib, thus, reducing the risks of your baby becoming injured in case the rail collapses. You can also adjust the mattress height depending on your baby’s height. We must say that, at the lowest setting, you have to stoop too much to scoop up your baby.

​6. Athena Naomi 4-in-1 Crib with Toddler Rail

The best baby cribs are obviously the ones with conversion capabilities since these provide the best value for the parents’ money. The Naomi 4-in-1 crib is one such crib, thanks to the fact that it can be four things in your growing child’s life.

During your baby’s infant years, it can be his crib where he plays, observes his surroundings, and sleeps for most of the day and night. When he becomes a toddler, it becomes his bed, a place for sleeping, reading and even playing. During his school age years, it becomes his daybed and, later in his teenage years, his adult bed.

What's Great About It: We like the choices in colors – white, cherry and espresso – which are gender-friendly colors that can be used in boys’ and girls’ rooms. Your peace of mind about its safety, durability and quality is assured, too, since its materials and construction are in compliance with JPMA, ASTM and CPSC standards. You don’t have to buy another bed for your baby as he grows older, too.

7. Delta Children Canton 4-in-1 Convertible Crib

Cribs are obviously utilitarian furniture but we have to say that these should be as beautiful as they are functional. For this reason, its elegant design from the slats and curves to the colors is the first quality that attracted us to the Canton 4-in-1 crib. The colors available, such as Dark Chocolate, Espresso Cherry, and Dark Cherry, make it easy to choose depending on the nursery’s color combo.

Aside from its beautiful appearance, many parents choose it because of its safe materials used and sturdy construction. The pine wood has been finished with non-toxic stains (i.e., no toxic chemicals) while the slats are within the safety standards recommended by JPMA. Even the non-drop design and adjustable mattress comply with the stringent safety standards.

What's Great About It: Like all the convertible beds here, we love its versatile uses. You can easily set up the crib with your basic DIY tools and skills. Your infant will also have a toddler’s bed when the time comes, thanks to the toddler bed rail included in your initial purchase. You have to buy the conversion kits to convert it from a toddler bed to a daybed and an adult bed for a teenager.

​8. Graco Bryson 4-in-1 Convertible Crib

The Graco brand is well-known among parents because of its extensive product lines including strollers and car seats. Your patronage of the brand may extend to its Bryson 4-in-1 crib, an outstanding product that parents have praised for many reasons. You will agree that it has a classic design suitable for both boys and girls, even as they become teenagers.

You can readily convert the crib into a toddler’s bed, a daybed, and a full-sized bed with the conversion kits that can be purchased separately. You can purchase the conversion kits at a later time, too, since your teenager may or may not like his old bed. You also have several choices in colors for the crib – brown, white, pebble grey, espresso, and dove brown.

What's Great About It: We like it because of its ease of assembly, whether as a baby’s crib or as teenager’s bed. You just have to read the instructions and apply your basic DIY skills to do the job.

​9. Stork Craft Princess 4-in-1 Fixed Side Convertible Crib

Parents like to treat their babies as little princes and princesses because, in many ways, they are treated like royalty. No wonder then that the Princess 4-in-1 convertible crib is popular among parents of baby girls. But don’t be put off by the feminine label as its white color also makes it suitable for baby boys; just change the bedding to a more appropriate color.

Gender-based colors aside, you will like its fixed side design, a far cry from the unsafe drop-side design of cribs from past years. Your baby’s risks of being trapped when the drop-side rail comes down are eliminated. You also have the benefit of a fully convertible crib – from a crib, to a toddler bed, to a daybed, and finally to an adult bed.

What's Great About It: We like its contemporary design suitable for a modern prince or princess. You can adjust the mattress, too, aside from changing its linens to suit your baby’s gender and for hygiene purposes. You don’t have to purchase other types of bed, too, since it’s fully convertible.

​10. Dream On Me 3-in-1 Aden Convertible Mini Crib

The Aden crib may be smaller in size than the other convertible cribs here must its overall quality hasn’t been downsized. Made from solid pine wood and finished with non-toxic materials, the convertible mini-crib can be used as a crib, a toddler’s bed, and a daytime bed.

There are two strikes against it, so to speak. You can’t convert it to a full-sized adult bed because of its smaller size. You can’t convert it, too, from crib to toddler’s bed without buying the conversion kits; the other cribs here already have the toddler bed rail for easy conversion.

What's Great About It: The size may be mini but its benefits aren’t, far from it. You will find its contemporary design as suitable for use in either a baby’s nursery or a toddler’s bedroom. You can even mix and match it with other Dream On Me pieces of baby furniture.

Things I Considered While Picking These

We know that baby cribs can either be a safe haven or a dangerous place for babies, especially infants. We have heard one too many stories of infants suffering from mild to severe injuries due to crib-related accidents. We can cite injuries from arms and legs trapped between slats, for example.

We wanted to offer parents smart choices in the best baby cribs, thus, we poured time, energy and effort into the job. We read the product reviews, gathered feedback from parents and baby experts, and even conducted visual inspections. We also used a simple yet effective criteria that responsible parents also use in choosing the cribs for their babies.

Drop-sides are a big no-no.

Starting in June 2011, the United States federal government has prohibited the manufacture and sale of drop-side rail cribs for safety reasons. Since 2000, drop-side cribs have been associated with numerous infant deaths due to suffocation and strangulation, thus, the ban.

We wanted to emphasize this point even when all of the cribs on our list have non-drop rail designs. Parents should avoid buying brand-new or accepting second-hand cribs with drop-side designs, too.

Safety in overall design

Babies are such fragile creatures that even a small pinch can cause severe injury. Their cribs must then be designed with their safety first and foremost. This is where the JPMA, ASTM, and CSPC certification comes in.

We didn’t have to measure the space between slats, test the adjustability of the mattress level, and perform other safety-related steps on all these cribs. Instead, we looked for the abovementioned safety certifications and relied on them to determine a crib’s overall safety level.

Durability of the materials and construction

Cribs can be used by children up until they are 24 months old (i.e., 2 years old). These pieces of baby furniture should then be made of durable wood and constructed with durability in mind. The nuts and bolts should be fitted tightly, as is the case for the screws and nails, especially as older kids can become frisky while in their cribs.

We looked for cribs that maintained their stable quality even as a kid started to play around the crib, even jump on its floor and climb up on the rails. We considered teething rails and adjustable-height mattresses as bonuses, too.

Convertibility

Contemporary cribs are designed with versatility in mind, too. Parents, after all, want to maximize the use of a piece of baby furniture instead of letting it gather dust in the attic.

We chose convertible cribs for this reason. Parents can easily and quickly convert a crib into four other kid-friendly furniture, namely, a toddler’s bed, a daybed, and a full-sized teen’s bed. Kids, in turn, can derive comfort from the familiarity of using the same bed since their infant days.

After we have considered the functionality including the safety, durability and convertibility of the cribs, we then considered their form. We looked at their style, color and size, among other design aspects. We must say that all 10 of the best baby cribs mentioned here have beautiful designs!

Aside from form and function, we also considered the following factors:

  • Ease of assembly and disassembly, especially as these are convertible cribs. You should have a relatively easy time at these tasks, even when you only have basic DIY skills and after reading the instructions manual.
  • Ease of changing the mattress’ linens and the mattress itself. You have to change the mattress after a few years since it will not fit into a daybed, much less a full-sized adult bed.
  • Ease of cleaning. Your maintenance steps should only involve checking for splinters, among others, and cleaning the surfaces with a clean cloth on a regular basis.

When choosing from among these best baby cribs, we suggest first setting a budget and size. You can then narrow down your choices until you find a convertible crib that fits your needs and wants in it.

Must-know Crib Safety Measures

But even when you have chosen a safe, durable and functional convertible bed, you can still err in its use. You should keep these crib safety measures in mind. You can then ensure that your baby is safe and sound as can be while he’s in his crib.

  • Always follow the manufacturer’s recommendations about setting up, converting and using the crib. Your first step, in fact, after receiving it should be to thoroughly read and understand the instructions manual.
  • Choose a safe location for the crib. You can place it in other areas aside from the nursery but no matter the location, you should put it away from dangerous things. These include cords of window blinds and curtains that he can easily grab on to; in direct sunlight or constant breeze streaming in from an opening particularly windows; near radiators and heaters; and near furniture that can be used for climbing out of it.
  • Keep soft furnishings that can cause suffocation and strangulation off the crib, regardless of your baby’s age. These include bumper pads, pillows, comforters, pillows, and stuffed toys, as well as corded devices.
  • Adjust the height of the crib or the depth of the mattress. As your child grows, he will be more adventurous and, thus, try to climb out of his crib. You should also remove things that can be used as stepping stone, so to speak, for an attempted jail break.
  • Check the mattress and its fit against the walls of the crib. You should replace a loose-fitting mattress since your baby’s limbs can be caught in the space between the crib wall and mattress’ edge.

    Tip: Try inserting two fingers into the gap. If you can’t easily do so, then the mattress still has a good fit. If you can, then it’s time to change the mattress to ensure a good fit.
  • Check the crib on a regular basis, such as every week. Even with a cursory visual inspection, you can identify splinters, peeling paint, and loose screws, among other hazards.

Your diligence in these safety measures will be rewarded when your baby considers his crib as, indeed, a safe haven.

Conclusion

Newborn babies can spend up t0 20 hours in their cribs, usually while sleeping. As they grow older, they will spend less time sleeping and more time playing in their cribs. Parents should make the necessary changes so that their children stay safe and sound while in their mini-homes/play places/beds.

Sandra Cobain
 

Mum of two. Child psychologist. Ardent admirer of art, crafts and cooking. She is the head of content for BestForTheKids. When she's not busy crafting posts & researching about compelling content ideas, she can be spotted playing outdoors with her two adorable children.

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