skip to main content
Best Crib Mattresses of 2024
Updated on
April 5, 2024

Best Crib Mattresses of 2024

By Jen LaBracio | Medically Reviewed by Brittany DiBardino DO
Babylist editors love baby gear and independently curate their favorite products to share with you. If you buy something through links on our site, Babylist may earn a commission.
Pinterest logo.
Best Crib Mattresses of 2024.
Best Crib Mattresses of 2024

If you’re a parent-to-be, there are likely a few products that have given you some pause throughout the process of building your baby registry. Strollers? You’ll be using one almost every day, and there are SO many different options. Car seats? There’s the safety factor, plus a ton of new terminology to digest. Picking a crib is one thing, but crib mattresses are a whole different ballgame.

Crib mattresses are one of the items that Babylist parents tell us they’re the most confused about—and we completely understand why. Babies spend a lot of time asleep (even though it may not seem that way), making a crib mattress something you’ll use a lot—and for many, many years. There are safe sleep guidelines to think about, plus questions around concerns like chemicals and off-gassing. And with seemingly hundreds of crib mattress options out there, from innerspring to foam and touting everything from breathability to temperature regulation, there’s a LOT to think through.

Bookmark this guide for when you’re ready to tackle crib mattress research. We’re walking you through the different types of crib mattresses, what features to consider, whether you should be concerned about chemicals (or not), crib mattress safety guidelines and of course the best crib mattresses that we recommend and the ones Babylist users love.

The Lowdown: Read This First

  • There are two main categories of crib mattresses: innerspring and foam. Innerspring mattresses use steel coils, while most foam mattresses are made from polyurethane, a foam resin.
  • A third specialty mattress category is beginning to emerge: air core. These crib mattresses are made from organic materials and feature a woven mattress core that’s made mostly of air and is breathable.
  • The US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) regulates the size of full-size crib mattresses. Regardless, always check for a snug fit—you shouldn’t be able to fit more than two fingers between the mattress and the crib.
  • Mini crib mattresses as well as mattresses used in playards and portable cribs must also comply with federal mandatory safety standards as of fall 2022.
  • Crib mattresses are firmer than adult mattresses—for a reason. Firm eqauls safe, so always keep that in mind while shopping.
  • Curious about certifications like GREENGUARD Gold, GOTS or CertiPUR-US? Read our explainer.
  • Avoid buying your crib mattress second-hand if possible.

Babylist’s Top Picks for the Best Crib Mattresses

Babylist’s Picks for the Best Crib Mattresses

Best Organic Crib Mattress

What Our Experts Say

Sweet dreams are made of…luxurious organic cotton. This dual-side mattress is a solid choice if you’re looking for a certified organic crib mattress. It features an organic cotton filling and cover and a core made from something called wavesupport technology that uses food-grade polyethylene to provide support instead of innersprings or foam. When things get messy (which they will), there’s a waterproof (but breathable and washable) cover to protect the mattress. It also has square corners for a snug fit and easier sheet changes.

This crib mattress is GREENGUARD Gold Certified and GOTS certified. It’s also free of polyurethane foam and vinyl and doesn’t contain wool, latex or soy.

What’s Worth Considering

Although not the lightest crib mattress, it’s not the heaviest, either, thanks to the innerspring-free design. Also interesting to note: Naturepedic is a family-owned business and their mattresses are handmade in Ohio by Amish craftspeople.

What Babylist Parents Say

“I thought it would be hard to get excited about a mattress purchase, but boy was I wrong. This thing is excellent in build quality, the comfort and support it provides are far superior to the foam mattresses we have used previously. I strongly recommend and have already repurchased as a gift.” -Matt

Additional Specs
Dimensions 27.25” x 52” x 6”
Weight 10 lbs

Another Organic Crib Mattress Option

What Our Experts Say

DTC brand Avocado’s Eco Organic crib mattress is a favorite among parents looking for a (slightly) more affordable GOTS-certified organic crib mattress option. Crafted in Los Angeles from certified organic cotton, hemp and wool with a coconut husk pad, this crib mattress is GREENGUARD Gold Certified and non-toxic. The natural thermoregulation properties of wool mean it will keep your little one cool in the summer and warm in the winter. We also love how transparent and sustainable the Avocado brand is.

What’s Worth Considering

This isn’t a dual-sided crib mattress. It’s also quite heavy, weighing in at 22 pounds.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 52” x 28” x 5”
Weight 22.5 lbs

Best Budget Crib Mattress

What Our Experts Say

Crib mattresses can get expensive—but they don’t have to. This mattress-in-a-box from trusted brand Graco costs under a hundred bucks and has tens of thousands of five-star reviews. It’s lightweight and easy to carry, making it a convenient choice if you’ll be lugging it up your stairs or storing it before baby arrives (before you expand it, of course). It features a water-resistant, removable cover, mid-range firmness and is designed to fit any standard full-size crib. It’s even GREENGUARD Gold Certified and uses CertiPUR-US Certified foam.

What’s Worth Considering

Graco recommends unrolling the mattress and allowing it to expand immediately after delivery to allow the maximum amount of time for full expansion in a room temperature setting.

What Babylist Parents Say

“Firm, quiet, comfortable mattress we purchased for our newborn. Make sure to give the mattress at least a week to expand.” -Lauren000

Additional Specs
Dimensions 52” x 27.6” x 5”
Weight 7 lbs

Best Breathable Crib Mattress

What Our Experts Say

For the absolute ultimate in crib mattress breathability, the innovative Newton is the clear winner. (It’s also the number one crib mattress choice of Babylist parents.) Every inch of this mattress is designed with your baby’s health and safety in mind. The Newton’s core is made from 90% free air (yup, you read that right), so your little one can literally breathe right through it. The wraparound fabric that encases the mattress is also completely breathable, and it unzips for easy washing. (There’s also a waterproof version if you’d prefer that.) The mattress is comfy and temperature-controlled and the cover is made from material that prevents bacterial growth. It’s also lightweight, so changing the crib sheet is easy.

We also love this mattress for what it doesn’t have in it—no polyurethane foam, no adhesives or glue, and no metal springs. It’s non-toxic, hypoallergenic, recyclable, GREENGUARD Gold Certified and verified by a Consumer Product Safety Commission accredited lab to reduce the risk of suffocation and CO2 rebreathing.

What’s Worth Considering

A breathable mattress can bring peace of mind to some parents, but remember, there’s minimal research and data out there that points to a breathable crib mattress as safer than a traditional foam or innerspring option. That’s not to say this isn’t a fantastic crib mattress—because it definitely is—but it’s something to keep in mind. And even if you’re using a breathable mattress, always remember to place your baby to sleep on their back.

The Newton is one of the pricier crib mattresses out there. (For a slightly more affordable air-core option, check out the Halo Dreamweave.) And while the breathability factor is cool, it also means that any type of liquid (bodily fluids, we’re looking at you) runs right through it unless you add a waterproof cover.

What Babylist Parents Say

“Such a cool mattress! Not only is it perfectly firm for a newborn but it is made in such an innovative way that I wonder how no one else came up with this sooner! Love the mattress and think it’s a must-buy for any new parent. Worth the money!” -Seema

Additional Specs
Dimensions 28” x 52” x 5.5”
Weight 11 lbs

Best More Affordable Breathable Crib Mattress

What Our Experts Say

A breathable crib mattress is something many parents value but can’t always fit into their budget. This popular pick is much more affordable than other breathable options and highly reviewed by Babylist parents. The surface is made from 100 percent organic cotton, while the inner Pure-Air core is derived from a baby-safe, food-grade polymer. It’s lightweight and also includes ingredients that are responsibly sourced from Canada and Europe.

What’s Worth Considering

The Organic Dream Organic Cotton Lightweight Crib Mattress is GREENGUARD Gold Certified. It’s designed for infants, so if you prefer a toddler-friendly option, check out the Lightweight 2-Stage. It’s a bit more expensive but still comes in at under $200.

What Babylist Parents Say

“Love our organic dream mattress, it’s soft breathable, and comfortable. Has a zipper cover over it that can be washed. Very happy with our purchase. The goal is to keep our baby safe and comfortable and they did just that for us.” -Rayanne

Additional Specs
Dimensions 52” x 28” x 5”
Weight 10.2 lbs

Best Two-Stage Crib Mattress

What Our Experts Say

Babies need a super-firm mattress for sleep safety. But toddlers are more focused on their comfort (and asking you no fewer than 100 questions to put off bedtime). This two-sided non-toxic mattress is made from high-density infant foam on one side and softer foam on the other that’s better suited for toddlers. It’s packed with other great features (especially considering the price) like a waterproof, stain- and odor-resistant knit fabric cover, seams that are bed bug and dust mite resistant and a smooth mattress surface so you’ll be able to easily pull the sheet taught. And it weighs only 11 pounds, making it a lot lighter than many other dual-sided mattresses on the market.

What’s Worth Considering

Moonlight Slumber mattresses are handmade in the US. The Little Dreamer is also GREENGUARD Gold Certified and CertiPUR-US certified and free of PVC, vinyl and fire retardants.

What Babylist Parents Say

“This mattress worked so well for our first child that we bought another for our second! Great quality and love that it changes firmness depending on which side it’s on. Would definitely recommend!” -Jillian

Additional Specs
Dimensions 27.5” x 52” x 5”
Weight 11 lbs

Best Lightweight Crib Mattress

What Our Experts Say

Changing sheets on your own bed is no fun, and we’re sorry to report that changing your little one’s crib sheets may be worse. That’s because you have to lift the entire mattress out of the crib each time—which is why lots of parents opt for a lightweight mattress option. This one weighs only seven pounds but doesn’t sacrifice comfort or quality. The WaveSupport core provides extra support for babies, and the mattress is waterproof with a wipe-clean surface and made from recyclable and food-safe materials.

What’s Worth Considering

This mattress scores well on chemical safety tests. It meets all flammability regulations and is free of anything you may not want in your baby’s crib mattress like vinyl, PVC, phthalates, PFCs and known allergens. It’s not, however, organic, and it doesn’t have any extra certifications like GREENGUARD Gold, so keep that in mind if these are things that are important to you.

If you’re looking for a lightweight organic option, try Naturepedic’s Lightweight Organic Cotton Classic Crib Mattress.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 27.5” x 52” x 6”
Weight 7 lbs

Best Mini Crib Mattress

What Our Experts Say

A mini crib is a great option if you’re tight on space or simply want a crib with a smaller footprint. This one is perfectly sized for a mini crib, yet still offers many of the same benefits as a full-size crib mattress would. The outer layer is made from soft cotton so it’s comfy for baby’s face. It’s also GREENGUARD Gold Certified and free of many things you probably don’t want in your mattress like polyurethane foam, vinyl, PVC, chemical flame retardants, dyes, allergens, phthalates, synthetic latex and off-gassing materials.

What’s Worth Considering

Looking for a breathable organic mattress option for your mini crib? Check out the Newton Baby Breathable Mini Crib Mattress.

Babyletto also makes a full-size version of this mattress, the popular Pure Core Crib Mattress.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 37.5” x 23.5” x 3”
Weight 4 lbs

Best Innerspring Crib Mattress

What Our Experts Say

If you’re looking for a sturdy, high-quality innerspring mattress that will take you from the baby days through the toddler years, look no further. This crib mattress is an exclusive collab between Lullaby Earth x Babylist and can only be found here. It’s a non-toxic, dual-sided 150 coil innerspring mattress that’s also GREENGUARD Gold Certified and contains zero harmful chemicals. We also love that the non-toxic food-grade surface is waterproof for easy cleaning.

What’s Worth Considering

Because this is an innerspring mattress, it weighs in on the heavier side at about 19 pounds.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 51.6” x 27.2” x 6”
Weight 19 lbs

Best Eco-Friendly Crib Mattress

What Our Experts Say

Looking for a greener mattress option? The core of Bundle of Dreams mattresses is made from something called Bundle Fiber, a safer, healthier alternative to foam. This protects your little one from harmful toxic emissions, and also won’t cause any off-gassing. (That’s the chemical smell that happens when you open a mattress made with foam.) We also appreciate the organic cotton sleep surface and ample support.

What’s Worth Considering

This mattress is GREENGUARD Gold Certified, recyclable and completely hypoallergenic. It’s not dual-sided, however.

What Babylist Parents Say

“Lightweight, breathable and comfortable. We live in Michigan where it is both hot and very cold and this mattress allows for baby to be comfortable in both seasons.” -Alison D.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 52” x 27” x 5”
Weight 10 lbs

Best Foam Crib Mattress

What Our Experts Say

Made from a thermo-bonded fiber foam core, there’s a lot to love about this crib mattress. It’s supportive and firm while also lightweight for easy changing. It features a waterproof vinyl cover and square corners for a snug fit. It’s also dual-stage and GREENGUARD Gold Certified. All for under $70!

What’s Worth Considering

Lots of parents comment about how firm this mattress is. But remember—what’s uncomfortable for an adult is exactly the firmness you want in a baby and toddler crib mattress for safety reasons. Also keep in mind that vinyl-covered mattresses can sometimes be noisier than mattresses covered in a different type of material.

Additional Specs
Dimensions 52” x 27.5” x 5”
Weight 10 lbs

Best Cooling Crib Mattress

What Our Experts Say

With so many comfort and performance features, we’re pretty sure even we could get a stellar night’s sleep on this crib mattress. This two-stage mattress has a cover that’s moisture-wicking and temperature neutral, so it helps your baby stay cool, making it an ideal choice if you live in a warm or even variable climate. We also love the breathability factor. The inner layer is made from a patented technology with 3D-structured fabric that’s designed to maximize airflow.

What’s Worth Considering

Both layers of this crib (the inner air-cushion layer and the moisture-wicking top cover) are removable and machine washable. The mattress isn’t organic or GREENGUARD Gold Certified, though, and it’s on the heavier side.

What Babylist Parents Say

“I got this mattress for my 10 month old since it’s for baby and toddler beds and oh my goodness. I want to sleep in her crib! This mattress is nothing like the options I had with my son. It’s soft, comfy and safe! Love it!” -Megan19

Additional Specs
Dimensions 28” x 52” x 6”
Weight 16 lbs

Other Crib Mattresses on Our Radar

You might also want to check out crib mattresses by these brands that are on our radar:

How We Chose the Best Crib Mattresses

  • We analyzed results from Babylist’s Best Baby Products survey, which polled 6,000 Babylist users and asked them to share the baby products they love the most and why.
  • We utilized insight from the Babylist editorial team, including Gear Editor Jen LaBracio, an expert in the baby space for over six years and a mom of two who has written hundreds of baby gear guides and personally researched and tested hundreds of baby products, including many crib mattresses.
  • We researched information on safe sleep and crib mattress safety from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Committee (CPSC). We also researched popular crib mattress certifications including GREENGUARD Gold Certification, Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) certification and CertiPUR-US certification.
  • We reviewed customer reviews from hundreds of real Babylist parents.

Types of Crib Mattresses

Most crib mattresses for into two categories: innerspring mattresses and foam mattresses.

Innerspring crib mattresses

This traditional mattress type has steel coils inside, making it sturdy and resilient. Above the coils, innerspring mattresses have layers of different cushioning materials, such as polyester, cotton or foam.

Innerspring mattresses are described by their coil count, which is the number of steel coils in the mattress. The more coils, the more supportive the mattress. You’ll also sometimes see steel gauge mentioned. This refers to the thickness of the coil; lower numbers mean thicker coils. Some innerspring mattresses also have metal border rods that provide stability around the edges.

Innerspring mattresses can be pricey, especially if you’re looking into a higher coil count. These mattresses also tend to weigh more (something to consider when you have to change crib sheets frequently).

Foam mattresses

Foam mattresses are typically made from polyurethane, a foam resin. Foam mattresses are lightweight and durable and are usually the least-expensive mattress option.

Specialty and organic mattresses

Crib mattresses come in a variety of organic materials such as cotton, wool, natural latex and coconut fiber. Other specialty mattresses market themselves as “air core.” These crib mattresses use a type of food-grade polymer to create a woven mattress core that’s made mostly of air.

Features to Consider When Shopping for a Crib Mattress

There’s a lot to think through when trying to select the best crib mattress. Focus on these features as you research your options.

Size and Fit

The US Consumer Product Safety Commission regulates full-size crib mattresses. Per the guidelines, all full-size crib mattress dimensions must measure at least 27 1/4 inches wide by 51 1/4 inches long and have a thickness not exceeding six inches.

The mattress should fit snugly against the frame of your crib. You shouldn’t be able to fit more than two fingers between the mattress and the crib.

If you’re shopping for a mattress for a mini crib (a smaller version of a full-size crib), note that CPSC regulations require that all mini cribs are sold with a mattress included. However, these mattresses are often fairly thin and skimpy, so you may want to purchase an additional mattress separately.

Be sure the dimensions of the mini crib mattress you choose match the interior dimensions of your particular mini crib. For an extra safety check, be sure that there isn’t more than a half-inch gap between the perimeter of the mattress and the perimeter of your mini crib when the mattress is centered and isn’t being compressed. You’ll also want to check to be sure there isn’t a gap greater than one inch at any point when the mattress is placed against the perimeter of the crib.

Firmness

Crib mattresses are firmer than adult mattresses—for a reason. The AAP recommends that babies sleep on a firm, flat sleep service. Crib mattresses are specifically designed to keep babies safe, help reduce the risk of SIDS and support their growing bones while they sleep.

Always keep firmness top of mind when shopping for a crib mattress and choose one that doesn’t sink with the weight of your baby. If you’re shopping for an innerspring crib mattress, look for one with a higher coil count. (If steel gauge is also listed, look for a lower number.) When choosing a foam crib mattress, test the mattress by pressing your hand firmly down on it and see how long it takes to regain its shape. The faster it springs back up, the better.

Many crib mattresses are double-sided. These mattresses have a firmer infant side and a softer side that is more appropriate for toddlers who still use a crib or convertible toddler bed. You’ll want to use the firmer infant side at least through your baby’s first birthday, then flip to the softer toddler side.

Materials

There are two things to keep in mind when considering the materials in your crib mattress: the cover and the filling.

Messes are inevitable, so the crib mattress you choose should be easy to clean. Consider a crib mattress with a waterproof outer cover built right in or one with a removable, washable cover. Also, pay attention to how “noisy” the mattress and cover may be. Some waterproof mattresses, especially lower-priced options, make crinkling sounds with every movement, which can disturb a sleeping baby.

Note that some crib mattresses are covered with vinyl. Some types of vinyl, like PVC (polyvinyl chloride), contain phthalates, a group of chemicals sometimes called plasticizers that are used to make plastics more durable. Some types of phthalates have been linked to negative effects on the reproductive system of animals, although more research is needed to fully assess the human health effects. If this is something that concerns you, avoid any crib mattresses that contain PVC.

When thinking through the type of filling you prefer in a crib mattress, there are several things to consider. Innerspring crib mattress use materials like cotton or foam around the inner coils. These types of crib mattresses tend to be heavy but well-made and durable. Foam mattresses are generally filled with high-density polyurethane foam, a light, durable and supportive foam that’s used as cushioning in many different consumer products like bedding and furniture. They tend to be less expensive than innerspring mattresses but may wear out sooner.

Organic, Breathable and Other Certifications and Designations

From organic and natural to GREENGUARD Gold Certified and GOTS, there is no shortage of certifications and designations floating around the world of crib mattresses. All crib mattresses made in the US must pass the same federal safety standards, but if you’re interested in further certifications, here’s what to research.

  • GREENGUARD Gold Certified. The GREENGUARD Gold Certification ensures that a product meets all industry standards for low chemical and VOC emissions. (Volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, are organic chemical computers that can lead to adverse health issues after consistent, prolonged exposure.)
  • GOTS. GOTS, the Global Organic Textile Standard, is the worldwide processing standard for organic materials. It requires that at least 95 percent of a crib’s mattress materials are certified organic and prohibits the use of certain substances like polyurethane and chemical flame retardants.
  • CertiPUR-US Certification. CertiPUR-US is a certification for foam that ensures it meets certain standards for content, emissions and durability. CertiPUR-US foam is low VOC and phthalate-free and is made without ozone depleters, mercury, lead and other heavy metals. It’s also free of formaldehyde and certain chemical flame retardants.
  • GOLS. The Global Organic Latex Standard requires that a mattress made with latex is 95 percent organic latex. (There are also restrictions on the other five percent of the mattress’s components.)

If you’re researching a breathable crib mattress, be aware there is no evidence that these types of mattresses are any safer than innerspring or foam options and have not been proven to reduce or protect against SIDS. However, there is no data to argue against these types of crib mattresses, either.

Weight

You’re going to be changing a lot of sheets over the next few years. Unlike when changing an adult bed, you’ll be picking up your crib mattress to get the fitted sheet on and off every time. If you’re on the smaller side or simply don’t want to wrangle with a heavy mattress, consider weight when you’re selecting a crib mattress. A lighter mattress makes sheet changes both easier and faster.

Price

Crib mattresses come in a huge range of prices, from under $100 to upwards of $500 or more. While more expensive mattresses tend to be made from higher-quality materials, there’s no need to splurge for a high-end crib mattress if it’s not in your budget. Many mid- to lower-priced mattresses are safe, comfortable and durable, and most run between about $100 to $300. Spending less than that is possible, but many parents report that very inexpensive mattresses often sag quickly, rip or don’t protect from leaks or spills, and therefore aren’t recommended.

Crib Mattress Safety Guidelines

It’s crucial to create a safe sleep environment for your baby, and a crib mattress is a big part of that. Follow these safety guidelines when choosing your mattress:

  • Avoid second-hand if possible. Because of the dangers associated with mold and bacteria, as well as general wear and tear, it’s best to avoid a used mattress, especially if you don’t know the history of the product. Reusing a crib mattress from another one of your children? Make sure there aren’t any openings in the waterproof cover where mold could’ve taken root and be sure the mattress is still firm and supportive without any sag.
  • Keep the crib empty. Although they look nice, pillows, bumpers, stuffed animals and blankets should never be in baby’s crib. That’s because they can wind up covering your baby’s face and be a suffocation hazard. Keep it to a fitted sheet only and check the AAP safe sleep policies for more information.
  • Place baby on their back. The safest sleeping position for your baby is on their back. It reduces the risk of SIDS, which is the leading cause of post-neonatal (one month to one year of age) death in babies in the US.
  • Check before you flip the mattress. If you have a double-sided mattress, check with your pediatrician to see if the time is right to flip it over to the toddler side. Most parents make the switch when their children are about 12 months old.

When to lower your crib mattress

According to the AAP, the most common falls occur when a baby tries to climb out of their crib. That’s why it’s important to lower the height of your crib mattress as your baby gets older and more mobile.

While your baby is an infant, you’ll want to use your crib on its highest mattress height setting so it’s easy to get your little one in and out. As soon as they can sit, lower the mattress to a level where they cannot fall out either by leaning against the side of the crib or pulling themselves over. Adjust the mattress to its lowest position before your child learns to stand.

About Babylist

Looking for the best items for your growing family? Add all your favorite baby products to ONE registry with Babylist.


Jen LaBracio

Senior Gear Editor

Jen LaBracio is Babylist’s Senior Gear Editor, a role that perfectly combines her love of all things baby gear with her love of (obsessive) research. When she’s not testing out a new high chair or pushing the latest stroller model around her neighborhood, she likes to run, spin, listen to podcasts, read and spend time at the beach. In her past life, she worked for over a decade in children’s publishing. She lives outside of Chicago with her husband and their two boys, Will and Ben.

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 review products, as well as the Babylist Health Advisory Board.