Sleepyhead Deluxe Pod

Our score

Mums' score

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In a nutshell

A unique and comfortable sleep aid that can be used as a supervised daytime napping space for babies and a tummy time aid

  • Pros

    Portable, stylish and ready to use out of the bag

  • Cons

    Expensive, bigger babies can grow out of it quickly

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Our review

Key features:

  • Age suitable for: 0-8 months
  • Made from: Cotton with polyester filling
  • Price: £120

MFM reviews statement

Firstly, are baby sleeping nests and pods safe?

You may have seen the warning from The Lullaby Trust that baby sleeping pods and nests do not meet the safer sleep guidelines that it promotes.

“The evidence shows that the safest way to sleep a baby is on a firm, flat, waterproof mattress in a cot or moses basket and we would not recommend any sleep surface that does not conform to these guidelines,” The Lullaby Trust told us.

According to the Trust, the fact that pods and nests have mattresses with raised, padded sides mean that they don’t meet the “flat” requirements of the guidelines. Some also have soft rather than firm mattresses. 

We've investigated all of the scientific evidence that the Trust has based its warning on. Perhaps because pods and nests are fairly recent products, there doesn't seem to be any specific research relating to them, but there is evidence that raises concerns around the padded sides and the fact that some pods have soft padded mattresses.

Therefore we recommend the following with the Sleepyhead Deluxe:

  • Don't use a Sleepyhead Deluxe unsupervised. That means only using them for daytime naps when your baby is with you and you can regularly monitor them. Don't use them for overnight sleeping 
  • Always place them on a flat, firm and stable surface. Don't tilt or raise any part of the Sleepyhead
  • Keep your baby in the same room as you
  • Regularly check that your baby has not moved their face into the side padding and is not overheating
  • Don't use loose bedding with your Sleepyhead Deluxe - there's a risk this may be pulled up and could cover your baby's face
  • If your baby needs more warmth than their sleepsuit/clothes, use a lightweight baby sleeping bag
  • Position your baby with their feet at the foot of the Sleepyhead, giving as much space as possible between your baby's head and the padded sides
  • And, of course, always put your baby to sleep on their back

Sleepyhead was the first baby pod on the market

Swedish entrepreneur Lisa Furuland wanted to find a safe co-sleeping solution after her first baby was born in 2006, so designed a sleeping pod and got her seamstress sister to create it for her.

Her little one slept so well in it that she decided to make more, calling them Sleepyhead Deluxe pods and turning them into a business.

The Deluxe pod went on sale sometime after, and parents around the globe have enthused about how their babies and toddlers miraculously became sleep superstars - with the help of the pod – ever since.

And now, there's a toy arch that can be attached to the Sleepyhead Deluxe, providing entertainment when your little one is awake, too.

Why choose a Sleepyhead pod?

Firstly, we've tested it thoroughly at MadeForMums, particularly in our awards, and the Sleepyhead was voted the best baby nest/sleeping pod available for two years running, making it our gold award winner. 

Secondly, four weeks before I was due, there were still some essentials we hadn’t got round to sorting, such as where our baby would sleep in the daytime. 

My eye was drawn to the positive reviews from parents, all giving full marks and enthusing about how wonderful it was.

Sleepyhead

What’s it like to use?

The Sleepyhead is incredibly simple to use. A week after purchasing it, I unexpectedly went into early labour. When we all came home from hospital, it was just a case of opening the Sleepyhead carry bag, taking out the pod and transferring our tiny bundle into it in our front room. He didn’t wake and I sat and watched him sleep sweetly for two hours.

In the beginning it was very easy to pop Evan into the pod after he’d fallen asleep post-feed.  I could move it easily from room to room with him in it too, so he was always with me.

When he got older and especially during tough developmental changes and teething, he did occasionally wake up when being put in. It would take a few goes to get him down and stay asleep, but he would almost always concede in the end.

You can also use the pod when they’re awake too. When he was teeny tiny, we’d pop him under the baby gym whilst still in it, and when he got older, it doubled as a tummy time aid.

Click here to buy the Enfant Terrible Sleepyhead Deluxe Pod from John Lewis

Is the Sleepyhead Deluxe Pod comfy for babies?

Yes, the material of the cover is soft corduroy-like cover and the texture of the pod is comfortable enough to be a gentle sleeping surface, but not so much so that your baby sinks into it.

The shape of the bumper means your baby feels cocooned rather than having lots of space around them.

Does a baby really sleep better in it?

In our experience, yes. In the beginning, Evan would sleep contentedly in the Sleepyhead during the day, and friends who were parents were always astonished at how well he’d sleep compared to their babies.

As he got older, his naps naturally decreased, but when he was sleeping soundly, he’d stay down for a solid amount of time.

Once he outgrew the Sleepyhead, we put him on the cot mattress. We found the quality and duration of his naps really diminished.

Thankfully, there's a larger Sleepyhead, the Grand, which accommodates children up to 3 years old and we started using that when he was 13 months old. 

How long will the pod last?

The one real negative is that the Sleepyhead Deluxe might not last you through to the estimated 8 month mark, especially if you have a bigger baby.

Around 6.5 months, Evan grew too long for it even though he’s smaller than average (on the 25th centile for length). I would still assert that we got our money’s worth.

How easy is it to clean?

Everything about the pod is washable (the covers and bumpers can go in the washing machine and the mattress pad is handwash only).

Extra covers come in a host of colours and given how much newborns spit up their milk/have poo explosions, buying one is definitely recommended so you have a spare to put on when you need to wash it.

You can also purchase replacement inner bumpers and pads direct from the manufacturers in Sweden. The cover was easy to remove and washed well, but there’s a bit of an art to putting the cover on the bumper and pad as it’s a tight fit.

Can you take it travelling?

Hayley - It’s feather light so moving it from room to room is easy. However, as it’s quite thick and padded, it’s not easy to fold down to a small size to take it away on holiday, for example, unless you had a large suitcase or you’re travelling via car. I like that the pod has its own clear plastic carry bag, and you can buy a navy transport bag for £55 separately if you’d like a more stylish version.

Sleepyhead launched a compatible mobile arch and toy set in 2017 - is it a useful addition to the Deluxe Baby Pod?

Sleepyhead Deluxe toy bar is a stylish addition

Yes. It means the Sleepyhead Deluxe is even more versatile as it can be used as both a gym and a sleeping pod, and suits longer babies if you unfasten the clips at the end. It also seems really comfortable for my baby, and he’s happy to lie there on his front or his back for a while playing with the toys and looking around the room.

The Toy Arch is suitable until babies are able to pull themselves up, so you’ll likely get around 4 to 6 months of use out of it. My baby is 5 months old and it’s still suitable for him. 

It looks much more chic and sophisticated than my brightly coloured baby gym, and I think my little boy appreciates the black and white contrast of the arch and toys, which is thought to be visually stimulating for young babies. I find it a useful addition, because it means the same product can be used in a variety of different ways.

5 things we love about the Sleepyhead Deluxe with its mobile toy arch

Is the Sleepyhead good value?

At £120, it isn’t cheap, but it is incredibly well engineered and worth the price considering it’s quality and all the benefits it will give you over the six to eight months it lasts.

And the resale value of Sleepyheads is not to be sniffed at either - they tend to fetch at least half their original price on auction sites.

What’s in the bag?

  • Sleepyhead Deluxe Pod

Any additional extras?

  • Deluxe Pod Toile De Jouy cover - £58
  • Deluxe Pod Celestial Blue cover - £48
  • Sleepyhead Toy Arch - £22
  • Sleepyhead Toy Set - £18

MadeforMums verdict:

If you’re experiencing issues with getting your baby to sleep during the day, the Sleepyhead Deluxe might be just the thing you need.

Given that the advice is to be in the same room as your baby while they're sleeping during the day (as well as at night), it offers a really portable sleeping space for supervised sleeping. 

I would definitely recommend this product to anyone who wants to have a product that’s a sleeping nest in the day as well as an entertainment place.

I can tell my baby feels comfortable on this while playing and sleeping. Although it’s expensive, I think the quality, functionality and design make it worth the money.

Bedtime, we've got that covered….