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Whether you’re a first-time parent or this isn’t your first time at the rodeo, you know that as much as you might enjoy holding your little bundle of joy, there are going to be times when you just can’t.

Maybe you need to help your other children get ready for school, or your baby is asleep and you finally have time to make yourself a snack. Or maybe you’re exhausted from the newborn stage and the only thing that will keep your little one happy is the consistent motion from a bouncer.

Whatever the reason, most parents agree that investing in a quality baby bouncer or swing is well worth it. But with so many options on the market, it can be overwhelming to pick the right one that keeps your little one content and gives you peace of mind.

In addition to being safe, you want something easy to operate, potentially travel friendly, and that will at least accommodate your child for their first 6 months.

Important safety note

If you’re buying a new baby bouncer from a retailer, you can rest assured that any new purchase made in-store or online will meet the standards as set forth by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

But if you’re inheriting an older baby bouncer, it’s a good idea to confirm that it’s not currently under a safety recall before using it.

To narrow down our recommendations for the best baby bouncers, we looked at factors such as:

  • a variety of vibrations or swing speeds
  • construction
  • portability
  • power source
  • stability
  • ease of use
  • parental feedback
  • ease of installation or assembly
  • quiet operation

An endorsement from authoritative groups like the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) also influenced our selection process.

Pricing guide

  • $ = under $60
  • $$ = $60–$120
  • $$$ = over $120

Best bouncer for infants

Fisher-Price Deluxe Bouncer

  • Price: $
  • Product weight: 8.5 pounds
  • Dimensions: 23.62 in. by 15.55 in. by 15.94 in.
  • Weight and age limit: up to 25 pounds

If your focus is on a supportive seat with gentle vibrations, the Fisher-Price Deluxe Bouncer is a smart choice. The built-in added padding provides cushioning for newborns. While you can rely on baby’s movements, you can also opt for powered vibration and soothing 20-minute melodies to help calm even the fussiest baby. An interactive mobile and a machine-washable removable seat pad round out the core features.

Considerations: While this bouncer is rated for up to 25 pounds, many parents found that their babies outgrew it by the time they were 2 or 3 months old. And some parents discovered that this wasn’t ideal for active babies who kicked at the frame because it could lead to bruising on their feet and heels.

Pros

  • plays 20 minutes of melodies or nature sounds
  • offers calming vibrations
  • machine washable cover
  • comes with a 3-point harness and non-skid feet

Cons

  • even with 25-pound weight limit, your baby may outgrow it before leaving the newborn stage

Best bouncer for toddlers

BabyBjörn Bouncer Balance Soft

  • Price: $$$
  • Product weight: 4.6 pounds
  • Dimensions: 31 in. by 15.5 in. by 22 in.
  • Weight and age limit: 8 to 29 pounds; 0 to 2 years

We’re not saying that your toddler will let you strap them into a bouncer when they’re able to run around the house. But if you have your heart set on a bouncer that grows with your child, the BabyBjörn Bouncer Balance Soft is designed to accommodate babies from newborns up to the age of 24 months.

With 10 color options, the supportive and ergonomic design helps to safely cradle younger babies. Although it lacks motorized vibration, four adjustable positions help to make baby as comfortable as possible.

The lightweight construction and modest 5-pound weight are ideal for travel. The fold-flat design makes this the perfect item to save for your next addition to the family. And a machine washable cover makes cleaning your bouncer easier than ever.

Pros

  • designed to grow with baby — supports up to 29 pounds in chair configuration
  • available in 10 color options
  • lightweight design makes it travel-friendly

Cons

  • lack of motorized vibration or soothing sounds may be a drawback for some parents

Best budget baby bouncer

Bright Starts Playful Pinwheels Bouncer

  • Price: $
  • Product weight: 5.4 pounds
  • Dimensions: 19 in. by 21 in. by 16.63 in.
  • Weight and age limit: up to 20 pounds

You don’t need to spend an arm and a leg to find a safe and reliable bouncer with vibrations for your little one. The Bright Starts Playful Pinwheels Bouncer is ideal if you’re not sold on expensive bouncers or don’t believe in going overboard on stocking your nursery.

This popular brand offers a bouncer with vibration and a removable interactive play bar to keep baby entertained with colorful characters. In addition to a pinwheel theme, there are colorful rainforest, safari, and flamingo designs to best fit your design aesthetic.

Considerations: Although this bouncer is rated for up to 20 pounds, many parents noted that it’s not suited for newborns because it lacks sufficient head and neck support. However, the machine-washable seat pad and a wipeable frame make cleaning this bouncer easy.

Pros

  • affordable option for most budgets
  • comes with a removable toy bar
  • offers soothing vibrations

Cons

  • may not be ideal for newborns because of lack of neck and head support

Best multidirectional baby bouncer

4Moms mamaRoo 4 Multi-motion Baby Swing

  • Price: $$$
  • Product weight: 19 pounds
  • Product dimensions: 25.5 in. by 19.5 in. by 33 in.
  • Weight and age limit: up to 25 pounds or 6 months of age

There’s no denying this baby swing is a serious splurge. However, it’s a fan favorite for a reason: It goes beyond simple vibrations or a back-and-forth swinging motion. This gadget bounces up and down and sways from side to side, giving your little one plenty of options to get into a groove.

There are five unique motions and five speeds. An accompanying app that’s Bluetooth-supported allows you to give your little one the soothing comfort they need without getting up from your couch. The stellar features are rounded out by built-in sounds, an adjustable seat recline feature, and the included interactive toy balls.

Considerations: While this bouncer does everything but clean your house, it’s not a travel-friendly find at 19 pounds. However, it’s rated for up to 25 pounds or 6 months of age.

Pros

  • offers 5 unique motions and 5 speeds
  • Bluetooth-enabled with an accompanying app to control bouncer
  • adjustable seat recline

Cons

  • expensive
  • 19-pound weight when empty means it’s not that travel-friendly

Best adjustable baby rocker

Fisher-Price Infant-to-ToddlerRocker

  • Price: $
  • Product weight: 8 pounds
  • Product dimensions: 27 in. by 20.5 in. by 22 in.
  • Weight and age limit: up to 40 pounds or toddler stage

The word “adjustable” can be alluring when you’re trying to outfit your nursery. Fisher-Price’s Infant-to-Toddler Rocker is an adjustable bouncer that transitions from a convertible rocker for younger babies to a stationary seat for toddlers. As a rocker, you can seamlessly shift from a mobile rocker to a stable seat that features gentle vibrations to soothe your fussy baby.

An adorable mobile with colorful characters helps to round out the infant features. The Infant-to-Toddler Rocker will support up to 40 pounds.

Pros

  • designed to grow with baby from a rocker to a toddler chair
  • comes with removable toy bar and offers soothing vibrations
  • machine washable seat pad for easy maintenance

Cons

  • might be too small for later toddler stages, even with a 40-pound weight rating

Best simple baby jumper

Graco Doorway Bumper Jumper

  • Price: $
  • Product weight: 5.5 pounds
  • Product dimensions: 17.5 in. by 17 in. by 80.5 in.
  • Weight and age limit: up to 25 pounds; must be at least 3 months old or have strong neck control

Baby jumpers are one of the older pieces of baby gear that have maintained their popularity. The Graco Doorway Bumper Jumper features a simplified style that’s straightforward and easy to install in a doorway.

Instead of struggling with screwing in hardware, the Graco model features a simple clamp that won’t leave marks on your door frame. The clamp design also means this can easily be repositioned or moved to different rooms so you can always keep an eye on your baby.

Considerations: The Bumper Jumper is rated for up to 25 pounds and features an adjustable strap to offer the perfect height for your little one. Note that if your door or entry frame doesn’t have crown molding, you’ll need to configure a modification to make this jumper work.

Pros

  • easy installation thanks to the spring-loaded clamp
  • can support up to 25 pounds
  • designed not to leave marks on doorframes

Cons

  • cannot be used until your baby has mastered neck control
  • will require modifications to use with entry and doorframes without crown molding

Best freestanding traditional baby jumper

Jolly Jumper with Super Stand

  • Price: $$$
  • Product weight: 15 pounds
  • Product dimensions: 42 in. by 43 in. by 60 in.
  • Weight and age limit: up to 28 pounds; must be at least 3 months old or have full neck control

The classic jumper design becomes portable with this freestanding update from Jolly Jumper. The Jolly Jumper features the traditional jumper seat and a fold-flat stand with four legs for added stability. Thanks to the sturdy construction, you can assemble this stand indoors or outside.

Considerations: This jumper is rated for up to 28 pounds and is designed for babies that are at least 3 months old or able to hold their heads up unassisted. The seat offers full spine support. And the easy assembly makes this a great portable solution.

Pros

  • stand-alone jumper construction makes this ideal to place anywhere
  • seat provides full spine support
  • can be used indoors or outdoors

Cons

  • cannot be used with newborns because full neck control is required for safe use

Best portable baby swing

Ingenuity Portable Swing

  • Price: $$
  • Product weight: 7.01 pounds
  • Product dimensions: 22.5 in. by 28.5 in. by 23 in.
  • Weight and age limit: up to 20 pounds

If you’re going to hit the road, it can be nerve-wracking to find travel-friendly gear that makes it possible to keep your baby happy and calm. The Ingenuity Portable Swing folds down to save space and to make it easy to take with you for a road trip to grandma’s house. The six quiet swing speeds and multiple melodies, along with the toy bar, will help to keep your baby occupied and soothed.

However, some parents note that of the two reclining positions, the upright option forced the child into an uncomfortable angle where they almost fell out of the seat.

Pros

  • fold-flat design makes this easy to store or travel
  • 6 swing speeds and multiple melodies
  • adaptive swing technology adjusts to your baby’s weight

Cons

  • a lower maximum weight rating of 20 pounds may be a deal-breaker for some parents

Best luxury baby swing

Graco Soothe My Way Swing with Removable Rocker

  • Price: $$$
  • Product weight: 22.53 pounds
  • Product dimensions: 28 in. by 25.5 in. by 35 in.
  • Weight and age limit: 5.5 to 25 pounds

Finding the perfect combination to keep your baby happy and quiet can feel like an impossibility. But Graco’s Soothe my Way Swing with Removable Rocker features eight swing speeds, two directions, and a multi-directional seat that lets baby experience all of that movement in a range of positions. If you don’t feel like using the swing function, the swing converts down to a gentle rocker.

This electric-powered swing ensures that you never run out of power, and three seat positions mean it will grow with your baby. However, some parents have noted that with consistent use, the swing operates loudly.

Pros

  • includes 8 motions in 2 directions, plus multidirectional seat and swing settings
  • seat can be removed to use as a classic rocker
  • offers 3 recline settings, 10 melodies, and 5 nature sounds

Cons

  • motor may run loud, which may be concerning for some parents

One of the biggest benefits to a bouncer or swing is that it frees up your hands — and arms — so that you can accomplish other tasks. While many parents use bouncers as a space to let babies snooze, it’s important to note that the AAP strongly discourages this because of the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).

Most bouncers and swings are rated for use up to 6 months of age or around 25 pounds. But during the earliest months, babies can’t roll over. This is why the AAP recommends “ABC sleeping” — alone (A) on their back (B) in a crib (C) — as the safest option since it leaves the airways unobstructed. In a more upright position, as is common in swings and bouncers, baby’s airway can become blocked.

The safety bottom line

  • Never leave your baby unsupervised in a bouncer or swing.
  • Always check whether or not your current model is listed under a product recall.
  • Be sure to register your bouncer so that you’ll receive product updates and recall notifications if they occur.

With these things in mind, let’s take a look at the best baby bouncers for you.

While they’re not the same thing, you’ll find that baby bouncers, swings, and jumpers often appear in the same category or aisle when you’re browsing online or visiting a store. But even though they can all serve a similar purpose, they’re different in how they function.

Bouncers, rockers or swings are ideal for newborns as they offer total support. In contrast, a jumper is only safe for older babies that can hold their heads up unassisted.

Baby bouncers and rockers

A baby bouncer or rocker is a stationary seat that sits low to the ground. Once your baby is securely seated and strapped in, their movements can help to create a “bouncing” or rocking motion. Many models offer a range of vibrations you can cycle through that help to soothe babies and may include toy bars to keep them entertained.

Baby swings

In contrast, a baby swing is typically larger, sits higher, and as the name implies, swings your child at one or more speeds. Some swings may include music, sounds, lights, and mobiles to help further engage your baby. While swings used to simply move back and forth, nowadays, you can find multi-directional models that support wider ranges of motion. This can include up and down, side to side, and even other features like figure eights or kangaroo motions.

Baby jumpers

A baby jumper should only be used once your little one has full control of their neck and can hold their head up unassisted. Jumpers can be purchased as a freestanding item with a supporting frame or as an item that needs to be secured to an existing structure like a door frame or hallway ceiling.

Bouncers are an ideal part of your baby’s gear that can keep them occupied when you need to accomplish a task or soothe a fussy baby. But when shopping for this essential item, there are a few things to keep in mind.

Weight limit

Always confirm the recommended maximum weight limit for any item you purchase. Most bouncers are designed to accommodate babies from the newborn stage up to around 6 months of age. However, as is shown in our buying guide, some models are designed to grow with your child through toddlerhood.

Baby’s dexterity

Especially if you’re thinking of buying a jumper, your baby should have neck control and be able to hold their head up unassisted. But many bouncers also convert into a range of positions. So, before adjusting the position, ensure that your baby will still be safely positioned without the risk of injury or excessive pressure on their neck or head.

Ease of assembly

Bouncers are usually very easy to assemble. But always check the product description or review the website for other parental reviews that outline how easy — or difficult — it is to assemble an item.

Portability

There are a range of reasons why you might prioritize a portable bouncer. You might want to move it around the house, take it with you when you travel, or just store it out of sight when it’s not in use. You’re going to want to look for models that fold flat or come with a cover to keep it clean when not in use.

Additional features

Extra options like vibrations, music, and even mobiles or toy bars are nice additional features that can turn your bouncer into an invaluable tool to keep your little one occupied and content. Often, these are standard features that most major brands include in their models. So, you don’t have to view these options as a splurge.

Budget

It’s not necessary to spend a premium price to get a quality item with the features you need. We’ve highlighted a range of options from budget friendly to median to luxury pricing. But within each range, you should be able to find a bouncer that offers a safe place to keep your baby along with value added features like vibrations, sounds, and mobiles or toy bars.

Safety regulations

If you’re buying a new bouncer or are putting it on your baby registry, you can rest assured that it meets safety regulations as set forth by the CPSC. But if you’re buying or receiving a second-hand model, always check that it’s not listed on any safety recall product lists and always inspect the product for signs of damage or wear that might impact its safety.

When should a baby use a bouncer?

Your baby should never sleep in a bouncer. However, most bouncers are rated for use from newborn stage through late infancy — usually around nine to 12 months of age. Although it’s not always realistic that a more active baby is going to want to sit in a bouncer, consider whether you can adjust the recline position or if it’s a model that’s designed to convert and grow with your baby.

Are baby bouncers safe for newborns?

When used properly, yes, most bouncers are safe to use with newborns. However, some bouncers are not safe for newborns, and it’s always wise to check the manufacturer’s recommendations. We’ve called out the ones on our list that are not recommended for newborns until they have mastered neck control.

Usually there is a minimum weight rating that tends to be anywhere from six to eight pounds. Always make sure that your baby is securely strapped into the bouncer and don’t leave them unattended. However, once your baby has mastered sitting up, it’s time to retire your bouncer because it poses a tipping risk.

How long can a baby be in a baby bouncer?

While there’s no limit to how frequently your baby can use a bouncer, there are guidelines for how long they should be in it at a time. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), you should limit bouncer sessions to one hour. This guideline is based on research that suggests when very young children are too sedentary, it can impact health outcomes later in life. Note that their recommendation isn’t just limited to jumpers, but also applies to strollers, and even toddlers and preschoolers watching television.

Can babies sleep in a baby bouncer?

While it’s tempting, the AAP strongly discourages parents or caregivers from letting babies snooze in baby bouncers. This is because it can increase a child’s risk for SIDS. And especially for newborns who haven’t mastered neck control, it can encourage airway obstruction if their heads roll forward.

Even if you have plans to be the most hands-on parent that ever existed, the time is going to come when you need to put your baby down to free up your hands. And sometimes, simply putting them on the floor on a playmat isn’t going to cut it.

In other cases, sometimes you just can’t compete with the soothing rhythm or vibration of a bouncer when your baby is fussy. A bouncer can help to keep your little ones safely entertained or calm a fussy baby.