Buying Guide: Best Baby Swing Models and Features

best baby swingsMost seasoned mommies can vouch, that the most welcomed tools in our repertoire of baby goods are the fuss busters, aka anything that can occupy our young ones long enough for us to form a coherent thought. These aren’t just great for giving us a break, but they are also very important to the development of newborns and toddlers, and are a must no matter your life style. Different types of fuss busters include walkers, rattles, bouncers and rockers, or even just a bottle. However, probably the best one of them all is the multifaceted and versatile baby swing.

What makes swings so effective, is they are literally set and forget, and are a surefire way of soothing our little grouch heads. Almost every swing today is automated or semi-automated, so you can leave them alone and perform tasks around the house. The rocking motion of the swing simulates the natural swaying that babies experienced for 9 months within the womb, and will almost always put them at ease. This is the one area that choosing the right one can be pretty easy, I just recommend that you purchase one in general. To make your decision a bit easier however, here is a simple guide and a personal list of the 5 best baby swings on the market.

Top 5 Models

Graco Swing By Me Portable 2-in-1 Swing

Fisher-Price Papasan Cradle Swing

Graco Glider LX Gliding Swing

Fisher-Price Cradle ‘N Swing, My Little Snugabunny

Bright Starts Portable Swing


Types of Modelssound asleep

Full Sized: Full sized versions are your standard style, and what most people mean when they are talking about baby swings. These can accommodate newborns, and are sturdy enough to last up until your baby is around 30 pounds. You can basically put these wherever you want, however they leave a substantial footprint and are usually reserved for playrooms.

Portable: These are a little lighter than the full sized models, and hence have a stricter weight requirement, to around 25 pounds. The benefit of these is they are much more easy to handle and can be moved from room to room, allowing your baby to always be within your line of sight. However there is the added concern of a less than sturdy model that can tip over. These also have a very low rise, making them potential tripping hazards and within easy reach of pets.

 Hybrid: Hybrid models are a very interesting, jack of all trades, which combines a lot of the benefits that you would normally get from a bouncer and a glider, to go along with what you would want from a swing. These are incredibly expensive, due to its many features, but you are also saving money because you won’t have to purchase the extra baby gear. The overall benefit then is that you are saving a ton of space.

reclining backFeatures to Look For

Safety, Safety, Safety! Like I’ve been annoyingly harping onto you about throughout every article on this site, if there is a single biggest feature on any product that you purchase that you absolutely need to be 100% about, it is that you are not substituting on safety. However, here are some of the other secondary features to consider.

Power: The very first swings on the market were full manual swings, which simply meant that it was up to you to rock your toddler. However, as you can imagine there was plenty more which we can do to make these more efficient. Swing makers then developed the wind up model, which was a major success since it allowed for parents to leave the rocking and go back to tasks around the house. These were extremely effective because usually, by the time the rocking ceased, children were sound asleep. The next step was to introduce electric and battery powered features. Today, there are very few wind up models, virtual no manual models, and lots and lots of battery and plug in models. My recommendation is to choose battery models because they are a little cheaper than plug in models(even though you’ll have to pay for batteries), and the cord won’t be a hassle.

Speed: Although we don’t want to crank our baby swings up to warp speed, some young ones prefer to sway back and forth quickly , while others prefer slow glides. You won’t know unless you put one in for a test drive, however, there are plenty of models with multiple speed settings which can make this a worry free decision.

Reclining Seat: Reclining Seats are essential to increase the effective use of a model. For newborns with a lack of head control, the absence of a safe horizontal angle to lay can cause some serious injuries to the neck. On the other hand, older babies will want a forward facing seat so that they can get a good view. A model with an adjustable seat will give you the option to do both, and ultimately keep the swing around longer.

Distractions: There are ton of options available for providing valuable entertainment, but these aren’t essential. Some of these features include on board music, rattlers, and attachment toys. However remember that you can always purchase these ela carte.