10 of the best cool but warm baby blankets

These baby blankets will keep your little one cosy at home or in their buggy

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Blankets can be used when your baby is sleeping at home, or in a buggy, to keep them cosy and warm – especially useful in the colder months!

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The NHS advises that a room temperature between 16-20C is ideal for little ones, and you can adjust how warm they are by using layers of lightweight blankets.

At this temperature, your baby will only need one or two cellular blankets – the kind they use in hospitals – and if the blanket is folded that counts as two blankets. We’ve answered all your baby blanket safety questions below, or you can click here to see the 11 best and safe baby blankets on the market.

When can my baby use a blanket?

We spoke to safe sleeping charity The Lullaby Trust and they reassured us that it is safe to use a lightweight blanket from birth, as long as you follow the official advice on safe sleeping.

This means making sure your baby is placed on their back and ‘feet to foot’ in the crib or cot, with their feet at the bottom of the crib/cot.

Blankets should be tucked in securely and should not come above your baby’s shoulders.

“Use the least amount of bedcovers you can and then build up,” explained a representative from The Lullaby Trust.

“And check your baby regularly to make sure their chest and back are not too hot, as they cannot control their own temperature.”

Can I use a baby pillow or duvet?

No, not from birth. The really important thing to remember is that duvets, quilts, thick blankets and pillows should not be used for any baby under 12 months old because of the risk of suffocation, says the NHS and The Lullaby Trust.  Find out more about baby pillow safety here.

How big are baby blankets?

Depending on the type of blanket, baby blankets can range in size. Generally, a blanket to fit a pram, crib or Moses basket is around 70cm x 90cm, while a blanket to fit a cot or cotbed is around 130cm x 160cm, but could be smaller, around 110cm x 130cm.

What’s the safest way to use a baby blanket?

  • First, to prevent your baby wriggling down under the covers, place them in the “feet to foot” position. This means their feet are at the end of the crib, cot, Moses basket or pushchair carrycot.
  • The baby mattress you use should be firm, flat, well-fitting and clean, and waterproof on the outside, and covered with a single sheet.
  • Tuck the covers in securely under your baby’s arms so they can’t slip over their head.
  • Use one or more layers of lightweight blankets, and remember a folded blanket counts as two layers.
  • Check that the blanket is firmly tucked in so it cannot become loose or slip over your little one’s head.
  • Don’t use duvets, quilts, cot bumpers, wedges, bedding rolls or pillows in a crib or cot.

It’s important to use a new mattress for each baby you have – read more on what not to buy secondhand for your baby.

What types of baby blankets are there?

  • Cotton cellular blankets – this classic baby blanket is woven from 100% cotton with holes (or cells) for airflow and insulation when layered.
  • Acrylic cellular blankets – just like a cotton cellular blanket, but woven from man made fibres.
  • Receiving blanket – this is a US phrase which essentially simply means a baby blanket, they can be made from fleece, flannel, cotton or just about any blanket fabric. Muslin-style receiving blankets tend to be larger than regular muslins at around 75cm x 100cm.
  • Baby coverlets and comforters – these covers are often embroidered, decorated or patterned and offer the thickness and warmth of a sheet and blanket combined, so should be used only when your baby needs that much warmth.
  • Swaddling blanket – a blanket used for wrapping your baby, to help prevent the ‘startle reflex’ when they involuntarily jerk as they sleep.
  • Fleece blankets – generally made from polyester, these easy care blankets are machine washable and cosy.
  • Knitted blankets – whether in cotton or cashmere, a knitted blanket can look super cute for a baby and be useful as a throw long after your little one is all grown up!
  • Muslins – the quintessential baby cloth for burping, mopping up spills and stains, and other baby goop! Usually around 60cm x 60cm, you can also get extra large sizes measuring around 120cm x 120cm.
  • Stadium blanket – not technically a baby blanket, this US-inspired throw was originally designed for covering up at the side of a chilly sports pitch, but could be just the thing for an impromptu picnic with your little one.
  • Baby sheepskin fleeces – a liner rather than a cover, a baby sheepskin fleece can be used in the buggy or cot and is thermostatic, meaning it cools in summer and provides warmth in winter.

What can I use instead of a baby blanket?

An alternative to blankets are baby sleeping bags, which are essentially wearable blankets with neck and armholes in different sizes and togs depending on the age they are for and what warmth you need.

They keep your little one at the right temperature without worrying about blankets getting kicked off or tangled up.

Should I swaddle my baby?

Swaddling is claimed to calm and soothe babies and there are online guides and books to show you how to wrap your little bundle.

The blanket needs to be lightweight yet large enough to wrap, normally at least 100cm x 100cm.

The Lullaby Trust says that while it does not advise for or against swaddling, it should be done for each day and night time sleep as part of a regular routine, using the following guidelines:

  • Use thin materials
  • Do not swaddle above the shoulders
  • Never put a swaddled baby to sleep on their front
  • Do not swaddle too tight
  • Check the baby’s temperature to ensure they do not get too hot

These are the 11 best and safest baby blankets on the market…

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1. George Baby chevron cellular shawl, £6 for a pack of 2

Size: 70cm x 90cm

Fabric: Cotton

Washable: Machine washable

A twist on the classic cellular blanket, George Baby has created these chevron cellular blankets, which have been woven in a zig zag pattern, rather than the traditional grid design.

They come in either pink or blue, and measure 70cm x 90cm, plus can be machine washed and tumble dried.

And at £6 each, they won’t break the bank either!

You can buy the George Baby chevron cellular shawl from Asda.

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2. Turtle Doves cashmere baby blanket, £45 each

Size: 70cm x 95cm

Fabric: Cashmere

Washable: Machine wash on cold setting

The pure cashmere baby blankets from British company Turtle Doves are designed and made in Shrewsbury and come in a range of colours, from neutral pastels to bold brights.

We love the unisex Jolly Bright design, which comes in a colourful mix of red, orange, blue, green, yellow, purple and pink, and the fact the business has won awards for its eco credentials.

The single cashmere layer is soft and warm and the best bit is that it can be machine washed on a cold setting and laid out to dry.

You can buy the cashmere baby blanket from Turtle Doves.

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3. Mamas & Papas Millie & Boris fleece blanket, £29 each

Size: 120cm x 160cm

Fabric: Polyester

Washable: Machine wash at 40C

The large size of this luxuriously soft fleece blanket makes it perfect for snuggling up with your little one as they grow older, as it will even fit on a single bed once your baby has grown out of cribs and cotbeds!

The neutral grey colour with cream stars means it will fit with any colour scheme, and is a lovely gift for those who don’t know the baby’s sex.

You can buy the Millie & Boris fleece blanket from Mamas & Papas, Pramworld, and Toys R Us.

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4. Clair de Lune cellular blanket, from £7.99 each

Size: 70cm x 90cm or 100cm x 150cm

Fabric: Cotton

Washable: Machine wash at 40C

This great value cellular blanket comes in a range of colours, and sizes to fit either small cribs and Moses baskets, or larger cots and cot beds.

Choose from classic white, cream, grey, blue or pink blankets to complement your nursery, and pick either the pram/crib size, which is 70cm x 90cm, or the cot/cot bed size, which is 100cm x 150cm and costs £15.99.

You can buy the Clair de Lune cellular blanket from Kiddicare, Amazon, and Clair de Lune.

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5. Aden + Anais Dream blanket, £44.95 – £58 each

Size: 120cm x 120cm

Fabric: Cotton

Washable: Machine wash on cold setting

With their beautiful design and large size, these Aden + Anais blankets are versatile and can be used in a cot, crib or pushchair.

They are machine washable too – and made of four layers of breathable, 100% cotton muslin, that reduces overheating.

You can buy the Aden + Anais Metallic Classic swaddles from Aden + Anais, Amazon, and Selfridges.

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6. Cheeky Chompers baby blanket, £49.99 each

Size: 75cm x 85cm

Fabric: Cotton, polyester, elastane

Washable: Machine wash at 40C

This blanket is designed for using out and about, whether on your buggy, or keeping your baby cosy in their carrier.

With a cuddly fleece side and a cotton side that comes in 6 different patterns, as well as cosy foot and hand pouches, there’s more to this blanket than meets the eye.

It also has sensory tags to keep your baby’s hands busy, and can be attached to your baby sling or carrier, car seat or buggy, so no more running over a stray blanket with dirty pushchair wheels!

You can buy the Cheeky Chompers cheeky blanket from John Lewis, Argos, and Amazon.

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7. John Lewis dinosaur pram blanket, £25 each

Size: 75cm x 100cm

Fabric: Cotton

Washable: Machine wash

This Jurassic-themed blanket is knitted from 100% cotton for a soft and cosy feel for your mini explorer.

The size is just right for a pram or crib, and the green and white dinosaur print is reversible, so you can pick your look for the day.

You can buy the dinosaur pram blanket from John Lewis.

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8. Bugaboo soft wool blanket, £89.99 each

Size: 80cm x 100cm

Fabric: Merino wool

Washable: Machine washable at 30C

As you might expect from Dutch pushchair brand Bugaboo, this soft blanket is chic, well-made and designed to make sure your little one is as cosy as possible.

Made from pure Merino wool, it naturally repels dirt (hooray!) but can also be machine washed at 30C and even tumble dried, so no need to worry about any little spills.

The wool is also temperature regulating, so it’s suitable throughout the seasons, and it comes in 3 colours: light grey mélange, off-white mélange, and petrol blue mélange.

You can buy the merino wool blanket from Bugaboo, Natural Baby Shower, and Harrods.

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9. Abeille cellular blanket, £20 each

Size: 75cm x 100cm

Fabric: Cotton

Washable: Machine wash at 40C

Abeille – which means bee in French – was set up by two mums who were determined to create a cellular blanket that would feel extra soft and cosy on their babies’ skin.

Slightly larger than the usual crib-size cellular blankets, the Abeille version also comes in six different colours that include a gorgeous deep red and a practical and stylish navy, as well as white, cream, pink and grey.

You can buy the Abeille cellular blanket from Hippy ChickPrecious Little One, and Amazon.

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10. Little Bird knitted blanket, £25 each

Size: 70cm x 90cm

Fabric: Cotton

Washable: Machine wash at 40C

This blanket from Jools Oliver’s brand Little Bird is cute and colourful, with its crochet-style finish and retro-inspired look.

The bold rainbow stripes stand out a mile, and it co-ordinates with the rest of the Little Bird nursery collection, which includes a Moses basket, changing mat, bunting and even clothes hangers.

You can buy the Little Bird knitted blanket from Mothercare.

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11. Snüz swaddle blanket, £14.95 each

Size: 75cm x 108cm

Fabric: Cotton

Washable: Machine washable

The soft stretchy cotton of this swaddle blanket makes it super comfy for babies from newborn to 3 months old, and it is shaped to make swaddling that bit easier.

The cute designs include Little Tweets, covered in pastel trees; Rootin’ Tootin’, which has a cool cactus print; and Cloud Nine, which is a simple white background printed with shooting stars and a yellow trim.

Plus all the swaddle blankets are part of a matching bedding range, so you can co-ordinate your crib!

You can buy the Snüz swaddle blanket from Natural Baby Shower, Uber Kids, and Snuz.

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