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 cannot recommend the Cocoonababy due to the following reasons:
- It has a thick mattress that babies skin into, although it does have a firm flat bottom.
- It has straps that keep baby in place and work like a positioner
Read our full investigation into safety concerns about baby pods and nests
We reviewed this product before the report came out, and tested while following the Lullaby Trust’ safe sleeping guidelines. We did find some interesting things out about the Cocoonababy.
What is it like in use?
When laying on the Cocoonababy, with my newborn son Rafferty, he looked very snug in the nest. He sank down into it and it moulded around him. He did look very protected in it.
The wedge allowed his legs to bend towards him in what seemed to be a very comfortable way and he certainly looked happier than when he’s on a regular mattress.
Does it offer your baby a comfortable position?
Not only was he cradled in what seemed to be a very comfortable position. It offered the right support for his head and his legs look well supported as well.
I found it useful to use in the daytime instead of a moses basket as it’s light-weight and easy to move around the house so I can have him in whichever room I’m in.
Can it help relieve the flat-head syndrome?
As far as this is an expert review, this is something that’s difficult to measure without being a medical professional. After using the Cocoonababy for two weeks my son didn’t get Plagiocephaly.
I think that’s because of the way the it curves down to support his body and the head. And there is certainly less pressure on the back of the his head than there would be by using a flat mattress so it would make sense that it would help relieve it.
What about the ‘relieves reflux’ claim?
I know from having suffered reflux myself that lying totally flat makes it worse so it makes sense that having the head tilted slightly upwards would make a baby with reflux more comfortable.
Does it help relieve colic?
I can’t really answer this, as I haven’t had a colic-y baby. But as it’s done what it said it will in other respects, I don’t doubt it would help relieve it.
Can you use it for co-sleeping?
No, you can’t, the Cocoonababy is meant to be used, while supervising your baby at all times, on the floor or in a cot.
And it’s worth noting the top of the Cocoonababy needs to sit 20cm lower than the top of the cot you are using.
Given its 19cm height, this rules out using it in moses baskets or smaller cribs such as the one we are using with our newborn, a gliding crib from John Lewis.
While I think it’s a great product, I have preferred using a regular mattress with my gliding cot at night, while using the Cocoonababy during the day.
Is the Cocoonababy value for money?
Anyone who has endured sleepless nights with a newborn will tell you that you can’t put a price on a happy baby, however at £129.95, it is expensive.
It comes with a fitted sheet which is machine washable at 30 degrees, however if you want spare sheets which is quite likely, you need to buy the ones that specifically fit it which cost £19.95 each. You can also buy a machine washable protective cover, which is £24.95.
You can also purchase a high waisted sleeping bag called a Cocobag, which costs £19.95 for the lightweight version and £23.95 for the quilted one.
So while I think it’s a great product, it’s definitely not great value for money, especially as it’s only likely to last until your baby is around four-months-old.
What’s in the box?
- The Cocoonababy
- Washable cover
- Tummy band
- Spare fitted sheets – £19.95
- Protective cover – £24.95
- Cocobag – £19.95
A great – if expensive – option to help your rest for short periods, but make sure you research how it must be used and that it would work for you before buying.