When you picture your baby’s nursery, what is the first piece of furniture that comes to mind? There’s a good chance it’s the baby crib. The best baby cribs manage to balance aesthetic vibes and great functionality—with many convertible cribs even able to grow with your child for years and years. While the crib may be one of the bigger upfront investments, it’s worth thinking about how long the baby crib can serve your family.
From various prices to different sizes, here are a few things to know and questions to keep in mind while you search for the best baby crib for your little one.
How much do baby cribs cost?
You likely won’t be surprised to learn there is a wide range when it comes to how much baby cribs cost. The cribs listed here vary from $134 to $749—although there are options at a much higher price point than that, too.
It can be helpful to know that all baby cribs sold in the United States have to be compliant with regulations from the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). So while a $200 crib may be different in some ways than a $1,000+ crib, both meet the same baseline safety standards.
Note: Safety regulations continue to change. For example, cribs with drop-side rails were banned in 2011. If you buy a used crib, know that it may not be compliant with current regulations.
Choosing the best baby cribs to last
Finding a crib that will last is a matter of striking a balance between durability and functionality. First of all, you’ll want to look for cribs that are well-constructed—especially if you want to convert it into other sizes. If you have the chance to see a model of the crib in person, pay attention to how the crib is assembled.
For safety reasons, it’s recommended that you transition your child from a crib to a toddler bed if and when they start climbing out of the crib. Depending on how adventurous your little one is, this could happen before their second birthday or a while later. Regardless, you can extend the usability of your crib if you get one that also converts to a toddler bed, junior bed or even full-sized bed.
What’s the difference between a mini crib and standard crib?
When you add a baby to the family, you also tend to add a lot of stuff—which can be tricky if space is at a premium. Mini cribs are smaller versions of standard cribs, which can make them better options if you plan to room share, are using a non-conventional nursery space or just want more room. Mini cribs are 24 inches wide by 38 inches long, as compared to 28 inches wide by 52 inches long for conventional cribs.
What’s a convertible crib?
Convertible cribs allow for different configurations as your child grows. Common options include turning the crib into a toddler bed and then day bed and full bed, in which case this could be the only bed your child needs. Some convertible cribs include the hardware to make the adjustments while other companies require you buy the hardware separate. You will also need a different mattress size for the day bed+ options.
While convertible cribs are popular for good reason, they aren’t right for everyone. For example, if you plan to keep the same crib for multiple children, you may want your older child to graduate to another bed of their own when a younger child is ready for the crib.
Why it’s our fave: There are convertible cribs and then there is Yuzu—an amazing 8-in-1 convertible crib. That includes options ranging from a bassinet to midi crib to full-size crib to toddler bed to day bed and more. In other words, whatever space you have to work with and whatever stage your child is at, you’re covered with the Yuzu. And the fact that your purchase includes the conversion kits means you have one less thing to worry about. We also love the versatile, modern design that makes this crib right at home in just about any aesthetic. (More about why we think the Yuzu 8-in-1 Convertible Crib is such a perfect pick here!)
More to know: Babyletto goes above and beyond when it comes to safety and sustainability. The Yuzu crib is made from New Zealand pine wood with a non-toxic finish that earns it the Greenguard Gold Certification. Yuzu is available in natural wood, natural walnut and white finishes—plus it comes with a bassinet pad and midi-sized mattress.
Age range: Newborn through five years.
Why it’s our fave: Nestig is a relative newcomer to the market, but is making waves in a serious way with their gorgeous, high-quality and functional cribs. Take the Wave convertible crib for example: With a unique, modern design three different size options (mini crib, full-sized crib and toddler bed), it can grow with your family even as your little one’s room decor evolves. Nestig is also truly committed to practicing sustainability across every step of the process—from the time the cribs are hand-made in Brazil at a family-owned factory to when the crib is shipped directly to you.
More to know: The Wave convertible crib is available in natural wood or white tones and comes with a mini crib mattress plus the conversion kits. The mattress can be adjusted to three different heights. There are wheels, which makes for easy maneuvering and can also be locked for safety.
Age range: Newborn until the child reaches 50 lbs.
Why it’s our fave: Does this not just scream “heirloom?” The Liberty crib features classic spindles that are bolstered by a super sturdy frame. But Namesake sees your grandma’s crib and goes above and beyond with Greenguard Gold certification, showing the crib surpasses the world’s most stringent chemical emissions requirements. Plus the hardware is all concealed for your baby’s safety.
More to know: With the included conversion kit, you can easily adapt the full-sized crib into a toddler bed. (You need another conversion kit to turn it into a day bed.) The mattress height is also adjustable to four positions.
Age range: Newborn until the child reaches 50 lbs.
Why it’s our fave: If you’re working the minimal space, the DaVinci Dylan folding portable mini crib will maximize your options! Take it from Motherly editor Katie, who says, “We ended up loving that this mini crib has wheels—we rolled it right into our bedroom when our baby outgrew her bassinet and rolled it back to the nursery when it was time for her to sleep on her own.”
Also simple to fold and store away, the Dylan can go wherever you need it—without compromising any safety or style. It’s even Greenguard Gold Certified for a further confidence boost.
More to know: As one of the least expensive options in our round-up, this is incredible value especially because it includes a 1″ mattress pad. You will need to buy a mini crib mattress and the conversion kit separately if you want to transform it into a twin bed.
Age range: Newborn until the child reaches 35 inches for the mini crib. The twin bed is rated for up to 500 lbs!
Why it’s our fave: For starters, have you seen that price? If you know anything about IKEA, it’s probably that you need to assemble the furniture yourself—but this crib is much easier than most to put together. Then you can enjoy the cool Scandinavian vibes of the sustainably sourced, solid beech wood.
As a Sniglar devotee, Motherly editor Shannon says, “When I was designing my baby’s nursery, I wanted bright happy colors, but a super simple crib. I hunted down a minimalist design in natural colored wood, and to my surprise, IKEA was the key! The Sniglar crib is not only design-forward but it’s extremely affordable. The all-wood design is sturdy, safe and converts to a toddler bed when it’s time.”
More to know: The bed base is adjustable to two heights. With the included conversion kit, you can take off one rail and turn the crib into a toddler bed.
Age range: Newborn until the child reaches 35 inches for the crib. Up to about 50 lbs. for the toddler bed.
Crate & Kids
Why it’s our fave: OK, you caught us swooning over the calming sage green color of this crib. Can you blame us?! But our adoration for the Finn crib isn’t limited to its color. With a modern minimalist aesthetic and complementary wood-tone legs, this is truly a statement piece that also is the perfect bed for your baby. Greenguard Gold Certified, the Finn crib is made with poplar wood rails and spindles.
More to know: Convert the Finn crib into a toddler bed with a conversion kit and rail that is sold separately. Complete the look in your nursery with a Finn sage green dresser and night stand, too!
Age range: Newborn until the child reaches 50 lbs. Do not convert into a toddler bed until your child is at least 15 months.
Why it’s our fave: This crib and changer combo is a nursery space-saving wonder! Complete with a full-sized crib and detachable dresser with changing table top, the farmhouse-style crib offers just about everything you need for a nursery. Made with non-toxic poplar wood, it can convert into a toddler bed, day bed or full bed with conversion kits that are sold separately.
More to know: Available in three wood tones/colors that would be right at home in a farmhouse, this crib is a beautiful statement piece for your child’s nursery.
Age range: Newborn until approximately 24 months for the crib.