Our Top Pick for 2018: HALO SleepSack 100% Cotton Swaddle Blanket
Read our full review.
Swaddling is more than simply wrapping your baby up. The swaddle mimics the cozy, protected feeling your baby had grown accustomed to in the womb, in order to help make the transition, into a new, bright, and big world, a little easier. Many infants will sleep deeper and longer when swaddled, and in those beginning weeks, sleep is a precious thing for new parents. To help you make this important decision, here are the leading choices of the best swaddle blankets, and a guide to help you choose which is most comfortable and safe for your new little bundle.
Let’s Have a Quick Look of Our Top 4 Picks:
#1. HALO SleepSack 100% Cotton
The HALO SleepSack 100% Cotton Swaddle Blanket strikes the perfect balance between breathable and secure to help both you and your newborn baby to get a restful night of sleep. HALO puts your baby’s safety first, down to the last detail. The motto, “Back is Best”, is embroidered on each swaddle, as a reminder of best sleep practices for infants. The HALO SleepSack is also used by many hospitals as the top choice for educating new parents about safety while sleeping, especially during those crucial first months. Some of the stand out benefits of the HALO SleepSack, and the reasons it tops the list, are the unique 3-way adjustable design, the easy access zipper, and for the distinction it has earned as “Hip Healthy”.
Not every baby will feel most comfortable with both arms secured across their chest. HALO recognized the need for flexibility in their design, while still maintaining the snug fit your baby desires. In the swaddle, you can position your baby 3 ways. This was a feature that reviewers said was “so smart” and many stated as the reason they have bought multiple HALO SleepSacks in all of the different sizes. The most common use of the swaddle, as mentioned before, would be both arms across the chest and secured in place, to completely limit the newborn startle reflex that can wake the baby up. The HALO SleepSack has strong, adjustable Velcro fasteners that allow you to fit your baby snuggly and can stand up to their efforts to break out. Next, you have the option to place your baby’s hands closer to their face, so they will be able to self soothe if they wish. Many babies will learn some method of self-soothing so they will be able to help themselves, and you, sleep through the night soundly. Last, you can leave one or both arms completely free, using it more as a sleep sack than a swaddle. As your baby gets older, they will need to transition to this, not just for comfort, but for safety, as well. Once you notice your baby beginning to show interest in rolling over, it is important that you stop swaddling the arms, so your baby will not find themselves face down with no way to lift their face off of the mattress. The wings that are used to create the tight swaddle are easily removed so that the transition will not mean purchasing an alternative sleep sack.
During the middle of the night, changing a diaper while still groggy can already be a challenge. The HALO SleepSack has made this process a little easier with their design that simply allows you to unzip the sleep sack starting from the bottom, instead of from the top. This means you will not be forced to essentially undress your baby and risk fully waking them up, exposing them to cold air from head to toe, just to change their diaper. You can keep your infant snug and warm, only opening the sack enough to quickly make the change and return them to their swaddle before they realize what is going on. Body temperature regulation is still hit or miss in the early weeks for your newborn and keeping warm is essential. It takes a lot of energy for a baby’s body to bring itself back up to normal after getting too cold, which can mean that the baby will need to eat sooner, or might be unable to fall back to sleep quickly. As one person who owned a HALO SleepSack pointed out, it is also faster and simpler than swaddling in a regular blanket, which means less time fumbling around in the dark for you.
When babies are first born, they are soft and flexible, which is essential for birth and growth, but can present some problems, as well. The traditional swaddles do not allow adequate moving room around the hips and legs, which can lead to an issue for your baby called hip dysplasia. HALO SleepSack gives them the essential extra room while still keeping them warm and secure in the swaddle. That is why this sleep sack has earned the title “Hip Healthy” by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute. Traditional swaddling blankets can be kicked off or opened in the middle of the night, leaving your baby exposed to the cold air, while the HALO SleepSack gives them room to kick, but cannot be removed by your infant. Also, as one Amazon reviewer mentioned, the material is not too heavy, or too light, but it provides just the right amount of warmth when used along with seasonally appropriate pajamas.
#2. Aden + Anais Classic Muslin
The Aden + Anais Classic Muslin Swaddle Blanket is made of 100% muslin cotton. It is a lightweight and breathable fabric, which is also durable, making it a perfect choice for a swaddling blanket. While most materials lose their softness or easily wear out over several washes, the A+A Muslin Swaddle gets softer with every wash and holds up very well to the test of time. The company pushes this forward as a selling point, but it is a claim that is substantially backed up by numerous reviews over several different websites. Other reasons this is such a popular product are the large size of the blanket and the versatility that it offers.
Measuring 47”X47”, the A+A Muslin Swaddles are much larger than the typical swaddling or receiving blanket that you will come across. The major benefit of this feature is that it makes it quite a bit easier to get your baby properly and securely swaddled, so that your baby will not break free too easily. The muslin material is very important when talking about such a large blanket, because, as one reviewer, who used these swaddles regularly, pointed out, you will be able to wrap around your baby’s back a second time for that added security. If it were not such a lightweight material, to the point that it feels like gauzy cotton, it would be too bulky and lift your infant’s body too far off of the mattress when wrapped around again, which would not only be uncomfortable, but also potentially dangerous. The larger size also means that this blanket can be used beyond the swaddling stage, which is now recommended only till 8 weeks by most professionals. It can be used well into their toddler years for many different purposes.
The A+A Muslin Swaddle is such a simple and comfortable design that you might not have imagined how many different tasks it can be used for over time when caring for your child. Swaddling is really just the beginning with these adorable and unique blankets. Because of their large size and soft, breathable material, they are perfect as a cover when nursing in public. Many reviewers said the A+A Muslin Swaddle could also be used as a cover over your stroller or car seat to keep the temperature just right, the sun out of their eyes, and insects off of your baby. When you travel, they easily fit like a sheet over your portable crib mat. The muslin material is also very absorbent making these swaddles great as a burp cloth, as well. No matter how you use them, they are machine washable, which means that, you will not have to worry about trying to keep them spotless. There are also 4 blankets in the package so you can use them for multiple purposes all at the same time. Over and over again, those that have purchased these swaddles said the same thing, they are more than worth the price and they could never live without them.
#3. WeeSprout Organic Cotton Muslin
The third pick on our list is certified by the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) as being grown in a socially and environmentally friendly way. That means that there are no harmful chemicals, pesticides, or toxins used at any point, from growing the cotton to processing it for manufacturing. The WeeSprout Organic Cotton Muslin Swaddle Blankets are also made with only natural dyes and they are completely allergen free. For many people, these features, being GOTS certified and completely natural, can make a big impact on their purchase decision. They should also be considered for their long lasting quality and because they are backed with great customer service from WeeSprout.
The quality of the WeeSprout Organic Swaddles is impeccable. They are 100% organic muslin cotton and, like the A+A Swaddle, they are 20% larger than the average receiving or swaddling blankets, meaning they are also very versatile. The breathable material reduces the risk of overheating for your baby, while still keeping them snuggly wrapped throughout their sleep time. One WeeSprout Organic Swaddle owner said that, while she had bought the blanket and used it for her newborn, her 2 year old daughter also loved to use the other one from the 2-pack as her own blanket each night. The toddler had trouble sleeping when she was hot, but also did not enjoy sleeping without any sort of cover and the WeeSprout Organic Swaddle was the perfect blanket to give her the comfortable rest she needed. Many other reviewers said that, when purchasing these as a gift, they came beautifully wrapped, which made it possible to give them without any other wrapping. The many uses of these large swaddles also make them a wonderful gift to give to a newly expectant family.
WeeSprout is an American Company and they make all of their swaddles in the United States. It is a family run business, located in Tennessee that takes great pride in all of the products that they make. They not only make high quality products, but they back them all with a lifetime, satisfaction guarantee. If you are unsatisfied with your WeeSprout Organic Swaddle, you can return them for a full, no hassle refund. The company sends follow up emails after a swaddle is purchased to be sure that you are happy and answer any questions you may have. They are a relatively new company and have not been producing the swaddles for as long as others in this business, so they actually only carry one print design in the swaddles for the time being. The print is gender neutral, sporting a frog on one and a duck on the other. While many people loved the blanket so much for the many virtues they possess otherwise, this was a drawback for other buyers. It especially hindered people from buying more than one set, as they did not wish to own several in the same prints. With the popularity of these organic swaddles, it is certain that it will not be long before more prints will be made available.
#4. Yoga Sprout Muslin
The Yoga Sprout Muslin Swaddle Blankets are made from 100% muslin cotton and come in 2-packs in a variety of bold and bright prints and colors. Yoga Sprout is a company that also sells kids clothing and many of their fun, bright prints on their swaddles can be coordinated with their different outfits. These swaddles come in at nearly half of what other brand name muslin swaddles will cost you, making them a wonderful, budget-friendly purchase. While less expensive, they still hold their own when compared to other Muslin Cotton Swaddles.
Yoga Sprout, a division of the Baby Vision Company, strives to provide quality and affordable products for infants and children and their families. The Yoga Sprout Muslin Blanket is no exception to their efforts. The swaddles measure 46”x46”, slightly smaller than some of the leading brands, but still larger than the average swaddling blanket. Those who had purchased these swaddles said the size difference was not noticeable and that they are still useful in many different situations for that reason and for their ability to absorb messes quickly. The Yoga Sprout Muslin Blanket is breathable, lightweight, and very comfortable, even after being washed many times.
With many advantages for the price, the main disadvantage that came up throughout several online reviews is that there seems to be a slight difference in thread count or quality of cotton that leads to the blanket wearing out more quickly than our other muslin cotton choices. However, other people said they had no problems with the blankets wearing out. If it will be used as a comfort blanket for an older child, and not as a swaddle, the wear and tear will, of course, be more noticeable. Only using these blankets for their intended purpose, as a swaddle, would help to maintain them over a longer period of time.
Many people see these Yoga Sprout Muslin Blankets as an excellent gift to give at a baby shower because of the affordability and the attractive and abundant design options. Oftentimes, people will purchase swaddle blankets as a gift for a shower or for a family that has recently had a baby, so this is absolutely something to consider. These comparable yet affordable blankets are the answer for many people on the lookout for quality, but living on a budget, and they could also be the answer for you.
Swaddling seems like such a basic part of care for your infant that you may feel that a basic blanket will do. However, there is much more to consider when you are picking the best way to soothe and comfort your baby at night. So, what features should you look at first? Here is the place to start so you can narrow down your options and find the best fit for your baby and budget.
Swaddle Blankets Materials
There are many different options of materials for receiving and swaddling blankets. Many of them will be a light flannel material, which can provide warmth and comfort, especially during the winter months. There are also options that are extremely soft to the touch like minky or other materials with a longer pile. However, some of those options are not very breathable, which means they can be too warm and potentially dangerous if left loose in the crib with an infant. Breathable, lightweight materials, such as muslin cotton or other 100% cotton options, generally make a perfect choice when choosing the best swaddle blankets, because when paired with the baby’s pajamas, they will keep the baby secure and warm without overheating. And, if they do cover the baby’s face at any point, they are not heavy enough to cause harm.
Swaddle Blankets Size
When your baby is still in newborn clothing, which is not a very long stretch of time generally, the typical receiving blankets are big enough to securely swaddle them. However, overtime, as they grow and become stronger, they will not only be busting out because of their size, but they will be able to wiggle free, or breakout, from the swaddle easily. A larger, blanket can be bulky if it is not the right material, but when it is lightweight, you will be able to wrap your baby securely with a large blanket and tuck it all the way around their back again comfortably.
If you go with the sleep sack, easy swaddling options, you will need to be certain you have the right size so your baby’s feet can kick freely without hitting the bottom of the sack. You also do not want the sack to be too large, putting your baby your infant at risk of being entangled in the blanket. Be certain to read the size charts before purchasing, and move up to the next size when you notice any sign that your baby might be running out of space.
Swaddle Blankets Function
Many people become “expert swaddlers” with practice and they love the versatility of the swaddle blanket, which can also be used as a burp cloth or cover, in many different situations. However, if you want a tighter, breakout proof swaddle that does not come with a learning curve you might want to consider the functional and easy swaddle sacks. While they will not be as useful in as many other situations, they provide amazing comfort and security to your newborn with very little effort to achieve that feeling on your part. Many people find that their baby sleeps much more soundly with these sleep sacks that are specifically designed to keep your baby snug. You will need to purchase one in different sizes as your baby grows, but for many people, it is worth it to be certain your baby is warm and comfortable all night long.
Swaddle Blankets Safety
Swaddling is about safety and security in many ways, but it can be unsafe when you do not follow recommended guidelines. Swaddling has come back into fashion as the recommendation changed to say that laying your baby down on their back at night, instead of their stomach, is the safest. On their stomach, the mattress stifles the startle reflex and there is no need to secure their arms, which is not true on their back.
Also, as mentioned, be sure that any sleep sack swaddle fits your baby properly and has been secured as the instructions direct. You will need to be sure that you watch for signs indicating when your infant is learning to roll over from back to front, and stop swaddling the arms securely to the chest. Typical swaddling blankets will be unable to prevent the arms from breaking free by the age that your baby will begin rolling around in their sleep, though you should still be aware and begin giving them extra room to free their arms around that time of development.
Swaddle Blankets Longevity
Not all types of swaddles will stand the test of time. With the sleep sacks, as mentioned before, you will find yourself purchasing different sizes as your baby grows. If you use a standard sized receiving blanket, you will also find yourself searching for a larger blanket, if you wish to continue swaddling for longer. However, the traditional receiving blankets can be used for many alternative purposes over time, such as a burp cloth or tummy time mat, so you will be able to get some continued use out of them. The best swaddle blankets will generally have the most varying uses for the longest amount of time. They can be used for all of the typical purposes, and many others beyond. However, they may also cost more upfront and you may find it difficult to learn how to securely swaddle your baby in a blanket.
Conclusion (Wrapping it up)
Different types of swaddles can be extremely useful in a wide range of situations. What works for one family may or may not work for you, depending on your lifestyle and preferences. When you are looking at your swaddling options, weigh these top picks and considerations for purchasing your best swaddle blankets, and you will be certain that you have made the right choice. Whichever you choose, here is to a good night of sleep for you and your comfortable and relaxed baby.