Swaddling is an age-old practice that involves wrapping an infant securely in a blanket from the neck down, so that both their arms and legs are tucked in tightly.

The practice is meant to mimic the way a baby is positioned in the womb — with little-to-no space for their arms or legs to flail around.

Keeping a baby wrapped in a swaddle helps reduce the startle (aka Moro) reflex, an involuntary response to being startled by anything from a sudden sound or no reason at all. This reflex disappears by 3 to 6 months, but can be quite sleep-inhibiting during those first few weeks and months at home.

Not only does swaddling intend to help your little one sleep longer and more soundly, but it also might help you score some much-needed Zzz’s as well.

The best time to swaddle a baby is when it’s time for them to go to sleep, whether that’s a nap or through the night.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), doing so may reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), as it prevents infants from rolling over onto their stomach.

Healthy infants should be placed on their backs to sleep as this is the safest position for an infant to sleep, says the AAP.

You’ll want to stop swaddling as soon as your baby shows signs of trying to roll over, usually between 2 and 4 months of age.

Like most types of baby gear, swaddles are not one-size-fits all. There are many different types, and you may notice that some work better than others for your baby in particular. Here are the two main types:

  • Traditional blanket swaddles. These are simply large and soft blankets that you can wrap your baby up in using a swaddling technique. They can also serve other purposes once your baby is no longer swaddling, such as a blanket or burp cloth. Make sure your infant is swaddled securely so they can’t roll, nor can the blanket become loose and create a suffocation risk.
  • Swaddling sacks. For new parents who don’t have the swaddling technique down pat, these are much more appealing. They’re set up to basically swaddle your baby for you thanks to snaps, Velcro, and zippers.

To create this list, we reached out to new parents to learn what swaddle blankets and devices they found most useful over the course of their baby’s first year. We also relied heavily on customer reviews and ratings to understand what features parents liked most (and what they didn’t).

Here are the best of the bunch of baby swaddles that will help your whole family score more snooze time.

Pricing guide

  • $ = under $30
  • $$ = $30 –$40
  • $$$ = $40–$50
  • $$$$ = over $50

Best swaddle blanket overall

aden + anais Cotton Muslin Swaddle 4pk

Price: $$$

When it comes to swaddling, you can’t really go wrong with basic. After all, this is how your parents and grandparents were likely swaddled when they were babies! These fan-favorite swaddle blankets from aden + anais are large, soft, and made from breathable 100 percent cotton muslin.

These machine-washable swaddles are sold in sets of 4 and come in over two dozen fun prints that you can coordinate with your baby’s nursery. Parents say they’re great for swaddling, but also that their littles love using them as blankies as they get older, too.

Best swaddle for newborns

Happiest Baby Sleepea 5-Second Baby Swaddle

Price: $$

Designed by Dr. Harvey Karp, inventor of the 5 S’s for soothing a baby, comes this sack-style swaddle that claims to keep your baby asleep for longer periods of time — and based on the reviews, it lives up to the hype.

The Sleepea swaddle is made from 100 percent organic cotton and features breathable mesh panels, a Velcro escape-proof closure, and two-way zipper that opens both at the top and bottom for easy diaper changes. The best part? It’s practically foolproof to put on, which new and sleep-deprived parents can appreciate.

Parents rave about the Sleepea, but warn that you might need to buy a variety of sizes to get the right fit as you keep up with your growing baby. However, when the fit is right, parents say that even the most Houdini-like babies were wiggle-free.

Best swaddle with breathable material

Solly Baby Swaddle

Price: $

You may have heard of this brand for their incredibly soft fabric baby wraps that moms love for the newborn stage. Well, their swaddle blankets are made from the same lightweight, stretchy, and silky soft material.

Solly Baby’s swaddles are extra large (about 52 by 52 inches), which makes them useful as wraps or light blankets beyond the first 3 months. Parents will also appreciate the fact that these swaddle blankets come in so many beautiful colors.

Best sleep sack

Gunamuna Sleep Bag Premium Duvet

Price: $$$

Once your baby ages up a few months, you’ll need a swaddle that allows their arms to hang out to keep them safe should they turn over mid-snooze. And while this option from Gunamuna definitely offers more wiggle room, it’s not for a lack of features.

The Gunamuna Sleep Bag is made from a down-alternative fill and wrapped in a soft viscose fabric made from bamboo. It has a four-way zipper option that allows for easy diaper changes and includes gentle weights evenly distributed around it to mimic mom’s soothing hold.

Parents of older babies say it’s great for keeping their little one warm and snoozing longer. But a handful of folks mention that they’re not super durable, which can be frustrating for the price point.

Best budget-friendly swaddle wrap

CuddleBug Swaddle

Price: $

Not only does this pack of three swaddle blankets wraps have outstanding ratings and reviews, but this set of three is typically available for less than $20! CuddleBug swaddle wraps have Velcro wings that hug your baby tightly while they snooze and are made without any hard-to-use zippers, buttons, or snaps.

Truly, folks love these swaddles. The only catch is that they’re only sized for baby’s first 3 months (or whenever they reach 14 pounds).

Best swaddle with wiggle room

HALO SleepSack Swaddle 100% Cotton

Price: $

If you’d rather not fuss with wrapping, this is the swaddle for you. HALO makes swaddling a two-step process thanks to their easy-to-use Velcro design. All you have to do is zip your baby up in the swaddle sack and then wrap each Velcro wing over their body while keeping their arms tucked in.

The best part is that their legs are free to move around, which helps prevent hip dysplasia, according to the AAP. This swaddle sack comes in both newborn and small sizes and several colors and patterns.

Best swaddle for tall babies

The Ollie World Ollie Swaddle

Price: $$$$

For parents of tall babies, The Ollie Swaddle offers the personalization you’ll need to find the right fit. The entire bottom part of this swaddle is left open so that you can adjust the length of it with an elastic tie as your baby grows. (It also offers easy access to that dirty diaper at 3 a.m.!)

Made of a polyester and spandex blend, this swaddle’s stretchy fabric has large Velcro closures that make wrapping baby easy. One downside, however, is the price. But with the amount of adjustability it offers, it might just be the only swaddle you need.

Best zippered swaddle sack

Love to Dream SWADDLE UP Original

Price: $

This zippered swaddle from Love to Dream is incredibly easy to use — with a two-way zipper that’s ideal for diaper changes, you just zip baby inside, and they’re good to go.

The SWADDLE UP’s design allows your baby to sleep with their arms up (hence the name) and legs wide, which parents say helps with babies who loathe swaddling because they want to keep their hands by their face. It’s also recognized by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute for being a “hip healthy” product.

However, it’s worth noting that while this zip sack offers flexibility, it should not be used for babies who can roll over as it can restrict their range of motion. Also, zippers run the risk of catching on bare baby tummies, so this is best used over clothing.

Best swaddle strap

Anna & Eve Baby Swaddle Strap

Price: $

Whether you’re looking for an arms-only solution or want to double-up on swaddling, a swaddle strap can come in handy. It’s essentially an arms-only wrap that stays put across baby’s torso.

This one from Anna & Eve is a popular pick among new parents because it’s made from 100 percent cotton, which doesn’t stretch over time, and is easily adjustable as your baby grows. Parents also mention that it’s great for warmer temps as it doesn’t cover baby’s legs.

With two layers of wrappable Velcro (including one that lays under baby’s arms to prevent the strap from sliding up) and comfy underarm cushions, it’s easy to use, especially during late night diaper changes.

Most versatile swaddle

Woolino Swaddle Blanket

Price: $$$

This swaddle blanket from Woolino is made of soft, 100 percent Australian merino wool, which is known for its temperature regulating and moisture wicking properties. That means this pick is great for all temperatures and can handle a little moisture — it’s inevitable, after all!

Once baby’s no longer being swaddled, you’ll still find plenty of use for this 35- by 39-inch blanket, whether for stroller rides, as a nursing cover, or as a sunshade.

Although swaddling has its benefits, it’s important to practice safe swaddling. Here are some important recommendations from the AAP.

  • Keep the crib bare. Loose blankets, stuffed animals, and lovies can pose a suffocation risk, so you’ll want to keep the crib completely bare.
  • Back is best. Whenever you swaddle your infant (or whenever they’re sleeping for that matter), they should be on their backs at all times.
  • Tight is right. When it comes to sleep sacks especially, you want the fit to be more like a sock and less like a potato sack. Babies who can wriggle their arms up and out run the risk of strangulation.
  • Stop swaddling when your baby can roll over. If and when your child shows the ability to roll over, or by 4 months of age, stop swaddling altogether.

Need additional guidance?

For more tips, check out the AAP’s safe swaddling guide.

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