Pack & Play Uses You Mightn’t Have Thought Of

While many parents lovingly refer to pack & plays as ‘Baby Jail’ there’s a lot to be said about the freedom they can give babies (and you) – at home or on the go. Read our Pack & Play guide here!

A baby sleeping in the Nuna Sena Aire Travel Crib

“Do I need a pack & play?”

That’s a question we get asked as parents ALL THE TIME and the answer is a resounding, YES.

Designed to provide a breathable and cozy space for your baby or toddler to sleep or play in, pack & plays are one product that does A LOT of things.

Long story short: they are hands-down a non-negotiable for baby registries.

In this article, we’ll go over:

  • Pack & Play uses you might not have thought of
  • Chemicals to avoid in pack & plays
  • Our favorite pack & play product picks

Scroll down to learn more!

 

Pack & Play uses

 

As an infant lounger

 

During the first few months of your baby’s life, it may seem like you never have your hands free. (We feel you!)

Many pack & plays (like the Nuna Cove Aire) now come in all sorts of shapes and sizes with adjustable mattress heights and inserts that allow you to safely lay and strap your baby in for a little lounging session.

 

Nuna COVE Aire Frost

 

 

As a changing station

 

If you don’t have a lot of room in your house, a pack & play like the 4moms Breeze Plus Playard can act as a changing station. OR it can simply be a second changing station in your living room or while visiting family and friends.

 

4 moms Breeze Plus Black

 

 

As a bassinet

 

While sleep may seem simple, there are actually a lot of ways for you to create your baby’s sleep environment. One popular use for pack & plays like the Nuna Cove Aire is as a bassinet! This three-in-one playard offers an easy to zip-off bassinet with a ventilated mesh mattress that pulls away heat and humidity. Since babies aren’t intended to stay in a bassinet over 15 lbs, this a fantastic money and space-saving solution.

Remember: The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommendations for creating a safe sleep environment by sharing the parent’s bedroom – but not the same sleeping surface – for at least the first year.

 

 

A woman doing yoga while her baby sleeps in a pack and play

 

As your child’s crib

 

Again, you don’t have to shell out for a crib if you haven’t found what you’re looking for yet…or if you know that you just want to use a pack & play and then transition your baby to a toddler bed.

 

As your child’s daytime nap space

 

Many sleep experts recommend giving your child a second space to nap. Try using your pack & play as a second familiar and cozy space for your baby to sleep during the day. This will also help them get used to the pack & play and make it an easy place for them to rest in while traveling.

 

For playtime

 

Keep your toys contained and tot happy by setting up a play space in a pack & play! By creating a designated space and time for your tot to play in their pack & play, you’re more likely to capture their attention and keep them from getting distracted.

 

At the beach or park

 

Having walls at the beach or park will A. make your time way less stressful and B. offer your tot a safe space to catch their daytime nap if needed. We know it sounds sandy, but most pack & plays are made with durable frames that can be hosed down and machine-washable fabrics.

 

During travel

 

If you’re the type of family who often finds themselves in a hotel, Airbnb or extended family’s house, you’re going to love having your own no-fuss bed/play space to bring.

 

Chemicals to avoid in pack & plays

 

4 moms Breeze Plus Black

 

You want to know how babies and kids explore the world? With their mouths!

That’s why it’s incredibly important that you’re mindful about what chemicals may be lurking in your gear, toys and clothing. At The Tot, we never use or recommend anything that hasn’t passed The Tot Safety Test. This means we’ve looked deep into third-party testing, examined ingredients lists and asked in-depth questions about a product’s composition.

When it comes to pack & plays, your baby/toddler will have close contact to the mesh, foam and fabric for an extended period of time while sleeping. That’s why it’s wise to avoid potentially harmful ingredients below.

  • BPA + BPS
  • PVC
  • Formaldehyde
  • Toxic Dyes + Inks
  • Flame Retardant Chemicals
  • Pesticides + Herbicides
  • Lead & Other Heavy Metals

Click here for the full list of chemicals we avoid and WHY.

 

 

Our favorite pack & play product picks

 

A little boy playing in the Nuna Sena Aire Pack & play

 

All Tot Safety Tested and approved, these are our favorite travel crib and pack & play picks!

 

Nuna Sena Aire Mini Travel Crib

 

  • Recommended use: birth to 30 lbs
  • Includes certified organic cotton sheet and travel bag
  • Machine washable fabrics
  • Screened for over 10,000 chemicals and VOCs known to pollute indoor air, the Sena meets the rigorous chemical emissions standards of UL, a global independent safety science company.

 

Nuna Sena Aire Mini Travel Crib in Champagne

 

Nuna Sena Aire Mini Travel Crib

 

$249.95

Available in more colors

BUY NOW

 

 

Nuna COVE Aire Playard

 

  • Recommended use: birth to 30 lbs
  • Contoured topper has a 3-point harness and customizable recline for increased comfort
  • Zip-off bassinet is easy to detach for playard use
  • Includes certified organic cotton sheet and travel bag
  • Machine washable fabrics
  • Screened for over 10,000 chemicals and VOCs known to pollute indoor air, the Cove meets the rigorous chemical emissions standards of UL, a global independent safety science company.

Nuna COVE Aire Oxford

 

Nuna COVE Aire Playard

 

$449.95

Available in more colors

BUY NOW

 

 

 

Nuna Sena Aire Travel Crib

 

  • Recommend use: birth to 3 years
  • Includes certified organic cotton sheet and travel bag
  • Machine washable fabrics
  • Screened for over 10,000 chemicals and VOCs known to pollute indoor air, the Sena meets the rigorous chemical emissions standards of UL, a global independent safety science company.

Nuna Sena Aire Travel Crib

 

Nuna Sena Aire Travel Crib

 

$349.95

Available in more colors

BUY NOW

 

 

 

4moms Breeze Plus Playard

 

  • Recommended use: birth to 30 lbs
  • Removable bassinet and changer
  • Convenient travel bag included
  • Free of harmful chemicals such as flame retardants, PVC, BPA + BPS, Formaldehyde, Toxic Dyes + Inks, Pesticides + Herbicides and Lead & Heavy Metals.

 

4 moms Breeze Plus Black

 

4moms Breeze Plus Playard 

 

$299.99

BUY NOW

 

 

Need to make your baby registry?

Get started today on The Tot Baby Registry!

 

 

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