10 Best Cribs of 2021
Best Cribs of 2021
June 15, 2021

Best Cribs of 2021

Best Cribs of 2021.
Photo by @tina
The crib that helps your child sleep peacefully is the crib that helps you sleep peacefully.Best Cribs of 2021

Watching your little one peacefully snoozing in their crib is one of the greatest pleasures of parenting. Whether you use a crib from day one or transition into one later, most parents get years of use out of this nursery essential.

Do You Need a Crib?

In addition to a bassinet or a playard that’s approved for sleep, a crib is the safest place for your baby to sleep. What type of crib you select is up to you. Some parents opt for a full size crib from the start, while others go for a mini crib either because of space restrictions or preference.

No matter which style or brand of crib you choose, it’s important to always follow safe sleep guidelines. Your baby should be placed on their back on a firm sleep surface with a fitted sheet with no other bedding, blankets or soft objects like toys or stuffed animals.

When Do You Need a Crib?

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends room sharing—when a baby sleeps in the parents’ room, close to the parents’ bed but on a separate sleep surface—for at least the first six months but preferably up to a year.

Although you can use a crib for your baby from day one, many parents choose to start off with their baby in a bassinet. Even if you don’t plan on using a crib right away, consider putting one on your registry since it’s an expensive item that friends and family may want to pitch in to get for you.

Types of Cribs

There are a few basic types of cribs to consider when choosing what’s right for you.

  • Traditional cribs, sometimes also called standard cribs, are full-size cribs with four sides.
  • Convertible cribs are cribs that convert to a toddler bed and sometimes even into a standard-sized bed frame or a daybed. (These cribs can also be called 4-in-1 or 3-in-1 cribs.) Most convertible cribs require conversion kits to morph into different setups. Sometimes these kits are included with the purchase of your crib and sometimes they are not. Pro tip: buy the conversion kit at the same time you purchase your convertible crib! This will ensure it hasn’t been discontinued by the time you need it.
  • Mini cribs are just what they sound like: miniature versions of a full-size crib. Mini cribs are generally larger than a bassinet but smaller than a traditional crib and many come with wheels for easy portability. (Some can even be folded flat for storage.) Depending on the model, most mini cribs can take you from the newborn days until your little one is about two or three years old. A mini crib is a great option if you have limited space or want a crib that’s easy to move around.
  • Travel cribs are lighter in weight and easy to set up and break down and are perfect for travel or if you’re staying overnight away from home.

How to Choose a Crib

Most parents choose their crib by style, size, price or a combination of all three. Here are a few things to keep in mind while you’re shopping.

  • All cribs manufactured after 2011 are required to meet standards set by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. Buying a crib secondhand isn’t recommended. That’s because cribs are held to extremely high (and constantly evolving) safety standards. Cribs also tend to weaken over time, especially after consistent use by an older child, so the only way to ensure the structural integrity is to buy new.
  • Always check for any recalls associated with your crib. Stop using it immediately if you come across one and contact the crib manufacturer for follow up.
  • Look over all crib components both before and after assembly to make sure everything is intact, stable and in good working order. Be sure there’s no broken or cracked slats, loose parts, etc. Measure the space between your crib’s slats; if they’re more than 2 3/8 inches apart (about the width of a soda can), the crib isn’t safe to use. Not sure you’re up for the job of assembling your crib yourself? Reach out to the manufacturer or the retailer, as many offer assembly prior to delivery. It will cost you a bit extra but may be worth it for peace of mind.
  • Be sure the crib you select has at least a few adjustable mattress settings that allow you to lower and raise the mattress. When your child is an infant, you’ll want a mattress at a higher setting that allows you easy access to them without having to bend all the way over. As they grow and start sitting and standing, you’ll want to lower the mattress so they can’t climb out.
  • And speaking of mattresses, make sure the one you’re using is a good, snug fit. According to Consumer Reports, a mattress used in a full-size crib must be at least 24 1/4 inches wide by 51 5/8 long and no more than six inches thick. If you can fit more than two fingers between the mattress and the crib frame, you don’t have a snug enough fit.

Do you think this content is helpful? Let our editors know!

These are Babylist’s top picks for the best cribs.

The Modern Crib

What Our Experts Say

The Hudson sets the vibe for a sleek, modern nursery and sits at a nice mid-level price point. It’s a bit lower in height than most cribs, which smaller parents appreciate for easy access to the baby. It will also last for years thanks to the included toddler bed conversion kit that easily transitions from crib to toddler bed to daybed. It comes in a variety of washes and woods.

What’s Worth Considering

The Hudson is Greenguard Gold certified which means it’s been screened for 360 VOCs and over 10,000 chemicals. Made of sustainable New Zealand pine wood with a non-toxic finish, it’s lead and phthalate free too.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 53.625” x 29.625” x 34.875”
Usage Crib: Stop using when child begins to climb or reaches 35”; toddler bed up to 50 lbs
Convertible? Converts to a toddler bed and a daybed with included conversion kit
Mattress settings 4 adjustable mattress levels

The Classic Crib

What Our Experts Say

Want a chic, durable crib that seamlessly fits into any nursery decor? Look no further than the Kendall. This popular pick is made of solid wood, is easy to assemble, is Greenguard Gold certified and is part of a furniture collection with lots of coordinating pieces like several different dressers and a nightstand.

What’s Worth Considering

The Kendall converts to an adorable toddler bed, but the kit is sold separately, so you’ll want to factor that into your budget.

The Kendall not your thing? Pottery Barn Kids has a wide variety of cribs in many styles, colors and finishes.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 57” x 32” x 44”
Usage Until child begins to climb or reaches 35”
Convertible? Converts to a toddler bed with separate kit
Mattress settings 3 adjustable mattress levels

The Mid-Century Crib

What Our Experts Say

An updated version of a timeless design, dadada’s Soho crib is light and airy, but still sturdy, thanks to its inclined legs. Made in Italy from solid beech wood with a baby-safe finish, it’s as safe as it is stylish.

What’s Worth Considering

Though it converts into a toddler bed, you will need to purchase a separate conversion kit.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 53.15” x 29.95” x 36.7”
Usage As a crib until child weighs 50 lbs
Convertible? Converts to a toddler bed with separate kit
Mattress settings 3 adjustable mattress levels

The Affordable Crib

What Our Experts Say

Clean lines, sturdy construction and well-designed details all for under $200. Yes, please. This modern crib from Delta Children is a popular choice among Babylist parents. It rocks cool mid-century vibes, converts to a toddler bed, day bed or sofa and is made from sustainable New Zealand pine wood.

What’s Worth Considering

Delta Children was founded around the idea of making safe, high-quality and affordable cribs that exceed industry standards.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 54” x 29.50” x 34”
Usage Newborn to 6 years, up to 50 lbs
Convertible? Converts to a toddler bed, daybed and sofa. Daybed/sofa rail included; toddler guardrail sold separately
Mattress settings 3 adjustable mattress levels

Ready to Add a Crib to Your Registry?

With Babylist, you can add any item from any store onto ONE registry. Start your registry today and get a Hello Baby Box full of free (amazing!) goodies.

The Ultra-Affordable Crib

What Our Experts Say

While the mattress only has two settings, the Gulliver Crib is designed to stick around into toddlerhood. Lower the mattress, remove one side rail and—voila!—big kid bed. This budget-friendly favorite comes with a simple white crib finish, so it’ll complement any nursery decor.

What’s Worth Considering

Don’t be wary of the low price point—it’s extremely sturdy and will last for more than one kid.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 53.5” x 29.5” x 32 5/8”
Usage As crib until child weighs 50 lbs
Convertible? Converts to a toddler bed with included conversion kit
Mattress settings 2 adjustable mattress levels

The Vintage Crib

What Our Experts Say

With its intricate rail details and traditional metal castings at the joints, this Million Dollar Baby crib is a nod to the days of the classic American metal cribs. Made of premium steel, the crib also undergoes a non-toxic hand-finishing process that makes each piece unique.

What’s Worth Considering

This crib has four adjustable mattress positions, and it’s a convertible crib (it transforms into both a toddler bed and daybed), though you’ll need to purchase the toddler bed conversion kit separately.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 53.89” x 29.52” x 43.89”
Usage Crib: until child reaches 35” or begins to climb out; Toddler bed: up to 50 lbs.
Convertible? Converts to a toddler bed and a daybed with a separate kit
Mattress settings 4 adjustable mattress levels

The Minimalist Crib

What Our Experts Say

You’ll definitely make a modern, minimalist statement in your nursery with this crib. The slats on the Harlow are made from acrylic, giving you a clear view of your baby and a fun decor element. The toddler bed conversion kit is included so the crib will grow right along with your baby.

What’s Worth Considering

Acrylic slats look cool but need to be wiped down much more frequently than wooden ones thanks to all that baby drool.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 53.4” x 29.9” x 34.6”
Usage Crib: Stop using when child begins to climb or reaches 35”; toddler bed up to 50 lbs
Convertible? Converts to a toddler bed with included conversion kit
Mattress settings 4 adjustable mattress levels

The Baby-to-Big-Kid Crib

What Our Experts Say

So many options, so many years of use. This crib converts from a crib into a toddler bed, daybed and full-size bed (but you’ll need to purchase the toddler guardrail and full-size bed frame separately). There’s nothing quite as satisfying as making an affordable baby gear purchase that lasts…and lasts.

What’s Worth Considering

Rather than all four sides being the same height, one side of this classic crib features a higher side that becomes the headboard for a big-kid bed down the road.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 55” x 29.5” x 46.25”
Usage Recommended for newborn up to 6 years; up to 50 lbs
Convertible? Converts to a toddler bed, daybed and full size bed with headboard. Daybed rail included, toddler guardrail and full size bed frame sold separately.
Mattress settings 3 adjustable mattress levels

The Mini Crib

What Our Experts Say

This simply designed crib comes in a range of rainbow colors and is the most popular mini crib choice of Babylist parents. It folds flat for easy storage, has locking wheels and comes with a one-inch mattress pad.

What’s Worth Considering

The Babyletto Gelato is another great mini crib—while it doesn’t have wheels or fold, it does convert to a twin bed with a conversion kit, purchased separately.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 38 5/8” x 25 3/8” x 36”
Usage Stop using when child begins to climb or reaches 35”
Convertible? No
Mattress settings 2 adjustable mattress levels

The Storage Crib

What Our Experts Say

This crib is not only sleek and pretty, but functional: it has three drawers and open side shelves for storing clothes, toys and more, making it handy for small spaces. It’s also a convertible crib, adapting into a toddler bed with the conversion kit sold separately.

What’s Worth Considering

This crib is pricey, but you are getting two pieces of furniture in one.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 66.75” x 30.5” x 40”
Usage Toddler bed should not be used until child is at least 15 mos; total weight limit 50 lbs
Convertible? Converts to a toddler bed with separate kit
Mattress settings 3 adjustable mattress levels

Other Cribs We Love

  • NurseryWorks: Did someone say statement crib? That’s what this brand specializes in. Are they expensive? Indeed. But the pieces also last forever—even converting to very stylish “grown-up” furniture.
  • Nestig: There’s a lot to like about this new direct-to-consumer crib brand: sleek designs, grow-with-baby features and JPMA-certified safety standards, plus they’re made from wood in Brazil.
  • Oeuf: This European brand specializes in clean lines and sustainable production. Their Sparrow crib is a classic.

Did you find this content helpful? Let our editors know!


This information is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. We do not accept any responsibility for any liability, loss or risk, personal or otherwise, incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, from any information or advice contained here. Babylist may earn compensation from affiliate links in this content. Learn more about how we write Babylist content and the Babylist Health Advisory Board.