Best Pack ’n Play Mattress: Complete Buyer Guide And Reviews

Published by 
Jess Miller
Last updated: 
December 6, 2021

Pack ’n Play mattress

Having choices is nice. Choices mean you can pick the best option for your needs. But there is such a thing as too many choices, especially when it comes to something you don't know a lot about.

If you’re a new parent, you have a lot of choices to make. From what kind of diapers to use to what kind of pacifiers to give your baby, there are so many things to decide. Here you’ll find help to make one of those decisions easier.

We’ve reviewed a host of options to determine the best Pack ’n Play mattress for you. Below you’ll find information that will make you an expert on the subject, and in no time you’ll have one more decision to check off your list.

Pack 'n Play Mattress FAQs

What are Pack ‘n Play mattresses?

A Pack ’n Play mattress creates an additional layer of padding you may want to put on top of the thin pad that comes with the Pack n Play. Smaller than a crib mattress, a Pack ’n Play mattress pad is made to fit perfectly into the play yard base without bunching or leaving gaps. A Pack ’n Play mattress is also a few inches thinner than a crib mattress.

Do you need a mattress for a Pack ’n Play?

Your Pack ’n Play comes with a mat to lay down at the base, but most people find they are quite firm and therefore uncomfortable for their little ones. A mattress provides extra comfort.

Can a Pack ’n Play mattress be washed?

Some mattresses come with removable covers that can be laundered. Some mattresses are waterproof and can be wiped off with soap and water. You can always use an additional cover on your Pack ’n Play that can be washed.

Will a Pack ’n Play hold a regular crib mattress?

Neither a regular crib mattress nor a mini crib mattress will fit in a Pack ’n Play. The dimensions are either too big or too small, respectively.

Is it safe to use a Pack ’n Play mattress?

As long as the mattress fills the bottom of the Pack ’n Play with no large gaps along the sides, it is perfectly safe to use a mattress in your Pack ’n Play.

What are the dimensions of a Pack ’n Play mattress?

There is some variance in the sizes of the mattresses available. They range from 24”–27” wide and are about 38” long. The thickness also varies. For example, you can get a mattress that’s just an inch and a half thick, or one 3 inches thick.

What kind of materials make up Pack ’n Play mattresses?

Many mattresses are made of polyurethane foam or latex foam. You can also find mattresses that have inner springs. Some mattresses have a cotton cover, and others have a vinyl cover.

Tips on choosing the bestPack 'n Play mattress

When choosing the best Pick ’n Play mattress for your family, there are a number of factors to consider. To pick the best mattress for your family, think about how you’ll be using the mattress and what would be most convenient and important to you.

For example, consider how thick you’d like the mattress to be. If you’ll be using the mattress primarily for naptime, a thinner mattress may be a fine choice. If you’ll be using the Pack ’n Play for the main sleep location while you’re traveling, you may prefer a thicker mattress. Keep in mind, though, that a thick mattress isn’t necessarily softer. A thick mattress may be made of very firm foam, while a thin one may be made of softer foam.

Speaking of travel, if you plan on doing a lot of it, you may prefer a mattress that folds up so that it is as portable as the play yard. You might also prefer a mattress that is lightweight as opposed to a heavier model.

Another point where you have options is the material the mattress is made of. They can be made like a traditional mattress with inner springs or they can be made with a foam core. The foam core could be made of latex, soy, or memory foam. If you have a latex allergy your family, you may want to avoid mattresses constructed with latex foam to be safe.

Some mattresses have organic outer covers. Some have hypoallergenic covers, and some covers are even microbial and antibacterial. If allergy sufferers tend to run in your family, you might consider one of those options. Some mattresses are waterproof, which can be especially helpful when it comes to leaky diapers. A quick wipe will leave it clean and ready to use.

Most Popular Pack ‘n Play Mattress Brands

Several companies manufacture play yard mattresses. Here’s a list of 5 popular brands you can buy from.

Dream On Me

This brand produces several different kinds of mattresses designed for play yards. Nearly three dozen options give you choices between mattress content, firmness, color and thickness. This brand offers a mid-range price point.

Sproutwise Kids

This brand offers a mattress for a Pack ’n Play that folds up for easy travel, and it even comes with its own carrying case. The original model has a latex foam core, while a newer model has a polyurethane core and weighs about half as much as the original. Both models have an organic cotton cover. If the higher price point is out of your budget, every now and then they offer not-quite-perfect “seconds.”

NapYou

Though this brand offers just one mattress model, it has the exclusive backing of Amazon. The memory foam pad folds into its own carrying bag for easy travel, and it can even be used outside of the Pack ’n Play as a stand-alone sleeping mat. Its organic blend cover offers a soft surface for your baby to rest and play on.

Milliard

From another brand that focuses on one product, this Pack ’n Play mattress folds up for easy travel and comes with a waterproof cover that you can launder at home. It is a very soft mattress that is best used for older babies.

Kolcraft

Like many of the other top companies, Kolcraft offers just one mattress option. It is not a perfect fit for a Pack ’n Play, and it should not be used for soft-sided play yards. But if your baby is a bit older and the gap along the sides won’t pose a suffocation danger, and your portable crib is hard-sided, this option is made in the USA out of hypoallergenic polyester. It offers a good combination of softness and firmness for your little one to rest on.

Best Pack ‘n Play Mattresses

  • 5” x 37.5” x 3”
  • Made in the USA
  • For babies 3–45 pounds
  • Square corners

This is a good budget-pick mattress. It provides your baby with extra padding in your Pack ’n Play, and you know your baby will be safe thanks to the rigorous testing the mattress goes through. It should also fit easily inside your play yard without leaving much of a gap for baby’s face and limbs to get stuck in.

Pros

  • Waterproof cover
  • Antibacterial binding
  • plusFits into play yards with square corners

Cons

  • Hard to travel with
   

Dimensions

25.5” x 37.5” x 3”

Material(s)

90% foam, 10% vinyl

Waterproof

Yes

Removable cover

No

Other Feature

Antibacterial and waterproof binding

  • 5” x 37.5 x 5”
  • Wipes clean
  • Antibacterial and hypoallergenic
  • Made in USA

This mattress offers a lot of comfort for your little one. The coil and foam inside is protected by a waterproof layer outside that works to keep your child clean and healthy. Made in the USA, you don’t have to worry about your baby’s safety because it passes flammability, lead and phthalate testing.

Pros

  • Resists mold and mildew
  • 10 year warranty
  • Federal Standard Flammability Standard approved

Cons

  • Difficult to transport
  • More solid frame could be more difficult to fit into play yard
   

Dimensions

25.5” x 37.5” x 3”

Material(s)

Steel coils, poly foam

Waterproof

Yes

Removable cover

No

Other Feature

Hypoallergenic and antibacterial cover

  • 26” x 37.5” x 1.5”
  • Memory foam
  • Rounded corners
  • Use with or without play yard

The memory foam in this mattress means it’s likely to be a very comfortable spot for your baby to nap and play on. The folding design means it’s likely to be easy for you to carry around wherever you need it. The outer layer is a cotton and polyester blend, so it’s not only soft, but it should also be durable.

Pros

  • Comes with carry bag
  • Fold-up design
  • Organic cotton blend in outer layer

Cons

  • Doesn't have a removable cover
  • Must wait 24–48 hours before use
   

Dimensions

26” x 37.5” x 1.5”

Material(s)

Memory foam, polyester and cotton

Waterproof

No

Removable cover

Yes

Other Feature

Includes carrying bag

What’s the Best Pack ‘n Play Mattress?

For my family, the Sproutwise poly foam mattress just can’t be beat. It’s the right size to safely fit into a Pack ’n Play, and the firmness is appropriate for a baby of any age. The lighter weight and the folding design for travel is a major space saver. It’s just a few dollars more than the next cheapest travel option, which is money well-spent if it means supporting a company that take care of the world we live in.

How the Best Pack ‘n Play Mattress was Picked

Three major factors went into choosing the Sproutwise poly foam mattress as the best one.

First, all the reviews say it fits well into the Pack ’n Play. That means it’s one of the safer models available. Nothing is more important than my baby’s safety, so this is a no-exceptions must-have! That means I wouldn’t buy the Milliard Mini Crib Mattress or the Kolcraft Cozy Soft Portable Crib Mattress because they aren’t quite wide enough for a safe fit.

Second, the folding design means it is easy to use. Taking care of a family takes a lot of work that I’m happy to do, but I don’t need to make my job harder than it needs to be! With this mattress, it’s easy to make my little girl comfortable wherever we go.

Third, though this mattress isn’t the cheapest option available, its list of features makes the cost well worth it. You just can’t put a price on knowing your baby will be safe and comfortable and knowing that you’re helping make the world a better place.

Relevant Products to Buy

A mattress cover is a great way to protect your investment. In case of spills or messes, you can rest assured that your mattress will come through clean and ready for immediate use when you put a protector on top of the mattress. In fact, get two, so when one needs to be washed, you have another to put on so that the mattress is always protected. If you live in a warm climate, look for one that is heat resistant.


Of course for the safest comfort, you’ll need sheets that fit snugly around the Pack ’n Play mattress. Sheets made specially for this size of mattress can found in a range of materials, from woven cotton to jersey knit. Organic options are also available.


Another extra you may find helpful is a diaper-changing pad. A messy diaper change doesn’t have to mean a change of sheets and coverings for your play yard mattress. A changing pad can be laid down and picked back up quickly and easily, letting your little one get back to playing and sleeping.


Final Review on the Best Pack 'n Play Mattresses

As a mom, nothing is more important than my baby’s safety. Once I know my baby is safe, I do what I can to make her as comfortable as possible. After I know that she’s safe and comfortable, then I’m willing to consider what will make life easier for me.

That’s why I chose the Sproutwise poly foam mattress for her Pack ’n Play. It fits perfectly without any gaps, so I don’t have to worry she’ll get a little arm or leg wedged in between the mattress and the sides, or worse, her little face. It also fits into my family’s budget and leaves room for a couple of washable, waterproof covers for easy cleanup and organic sheets to give my little one ultimate softness while she plays and sleeps.

I hope my Pack ’n Play mattress review helps you pick a mattress for your child that you can feel good about using. There’s nothing like the feeling you get when you know you’ve made a good choice for your baby’s care and well-being.

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