Many parents consider sleep sacks to be the answer to a prayer. Sleep sacks are the perfect alternative to baby blankets, which actually pose a risk to babies at a time when they are particularly vulnerable—when they are alone and unsupervised while mom and dad are trying to get some much-needed rest.

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  • Medium weight for general use
  • Perfect blanket alternative
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  • Unique design allows for some freedom
  • Helps babies transition out of swaddles
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  • Keeps baby warm without overheating
  • Durable
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  • Provides comfort even when mom and dad aren’t there
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  • Soft and warm
  • Features favorite Disney characters
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In fact, this is where the idea for sleep sacks came from. One parent, and the original inventor of the sleep sack, tragically lost his daughter to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and was determined to prevent other parents from suffering the same fate. The sleep sack became the solution that many parents were looking for: a safe way to keep your baby cozy and warm at night.

Sleep Sacks Key Considerations

MaterialSince their invention, sleep sacks of all kinds have been manufactured. One way in which they vary is in their material. The most common fabrics used for sleep sacks are cotton, fleece or microfleece, microfiber, and polyester, but the more you are willing to spend, the more options you have. However, the type of fabric you need mostly depends on the climate the sleep sack will be used in. As expected, cotton or microfiber would be best for summer nights, and fleece blends would be best for winter nights. You may want to consider owning a couple of sleep sacks, one for each situation.  

Either way, it is important to keep in mind that sleep sacks are intended to replace a blanket, not pajamas, so consider the fact that this will be a layer on top of clothing. You may also want to look into other options such as organic materials and materials free of toxins. Of course, the goal is to ensure that your baby is comfortable and won’t become too hot or too cold while sleeping.

DesignAnother way that sleep sacks vary is in their design. Experienced caregivers view sleep sacks as a great way to help babies transition out of traditional swaddling, and as a result, there are several designs that are meant to address each level of development. For very young babies, there are sleep sacks with “wings” that provide partial swaddling. As babies grow older, there are designs that allow for more movement, and for toddlers, there are designs that have openings for feet. Generally, the most common design is more fitted in the chest area but allows for limited movement in the lower body. This design fosters babies’ natural tendency to kick their feet but doesn’t give enough mobility for them to climb out of the crib, for example.

Two other design considerations to be aware of are sleeves and zippers. Many sleep sacks are sleeveless and give the baby more freedom, some have sleeves for warmth, and others are designed to keep the baby’s arms inside the sack. The best option depends on your baby’s sleep habits and the temperature in which they are sleeping. On a related note, zippers should always end near the baby’s feet so that it is harder for them to reach and unzip themselves. The other advantage to this is that proper zipper placement can make diaper changes a dream instead of a nightmare.

SafetyAs mentioned earlier, the most important feature of a sleep sack is that your baby is safe while wearing it. For several years, doctors have advised parents to keep cribs free of blankets and ensure that your baby sleeps on his or her back to prevent SIDS. Sleep sacks address these points by replacing blankets and limiting a baby’s ability to flip over onto their stomach. When wearing a sleep sack, a baby still gets the soothing comfort and warmth of a blanket without the risk. The limited mobility also prevents babies from standing in the crib or climbing out of it. Finally, the wearable design of a sleep sack ensures that your baby’s face won’t become covered, keeping airways clear.

SizeDespite the loose-fitting design, sleep sacks come in several sizes, usually measured in months. This is especially crucial to consider because a sleep sack that is too large can pose many of the same risks a blanket does. On the other hand, a sleep sack that is too small contradicts the mobility a sleep sack is meant to provide. So, like baby clothes, you will have to size up over time. There are, however, certain sleep sacks that are adjustable to account for your baby’s growth, which could save you from having to purchase more of them. Usually those sleep sacks have shoulder straps that can be fixed at certain intervals.

What Are the Top Six Sleep Sacks?

Here is a summary of the top six sleep sacks, each offering a unique combination of desirable features. All of these products are highly rated, and parent tested.

Halo SleepSack

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The Halo SleepSack is number one on this list because Halo is the original creator and manufacturer of sleep sacks and their sleep sacks are now used in hospitals. Halo has a full line of highly rated sleep sacks that vary in design, material, and function, and this is just one example. You cannot go wrong with any of their sleep sacks, but this one in particular is for basic, everyday use.

It is made with 100% cotton, microfleece, 100% cotton muslin, and plush dot velboa, and it is rated “Hip Healthy” by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute. The zipper is designed to end by the baby’s feet for easy diaper changes and to prevent him or her from escaping. This sleep sack is sleeveless, which prevents babies from overheating at night. The front of the sleep sack is embroidered with the words “Back is best” to remind parents and caregivers that the safest way for babies to sleep is on their back. This particular Halo SleepSack is available in 4 sizes and 18 different colors.

Pros:

  • Medium weight for general use
  • Perfect blanket alternative

Cons:

  • Zipper may be defective

Love To Dream Swaddle UP

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While most sleep sacks look like a v-shaped pillow case, the Swaddle UP sleep sack has a unique shape that keeps babies’ arms by their head in a wing position. With this design, babies have a difficult time rolling onto their belly, and it mimics a baby’s natural sleeping position that allows them to self-sooth throughout the night. This design more fitted than other sleep sacks to recreate the feeling of a womb, but it’s not too tight to restrict movement.

Swaddle UP also has dual zippers that allow you to zip up or down for easy diaper changes, and it is rated “Hip Healthy” by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute. This sleep sack is made from cotton and elastane, which is breathable and suited for general, everyday use. It is available in 3 sizes and 5 different colors.

Pros:

  • Unique design allows for some freedom
  • Helps babies transition out of swaddles

Cons:

  • May be too tight in the neck line

Baby Deedee Sleep Nest Baby Sleeping Bag

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The Baby Deedee Sleep Nest is a winter weight, high quality sleep sack. It has a reverse zipper that ends near your baby’s feet and shoulder straps with snap closure. This sleep sack lays completely flat when open so parents can place it on their baby, even if he or she has already fallen asleep. It is sleeveless for freedom of movement, and it is made with a 100% cotton exterior and a quilted interior for warmth. With its cocoon-like shape and sleeveless design, this sleep sack helps the baby transition out of the swaddling stage. It is available in 3 sizes and 12 different colors.

Pros:

  • Keeps baby warm without overheating
  • Durable

Cons:

  • Neck opening may be too large
  • Teething babies may chew on snaps

Nested Bean Baby Sleep Bag

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The Nested Bean Baby Sleep Bag has unique and useful features. First, the two-way zipper travels down one side and around the bottom of the sleep sack, rather than down the chest, which opens a large flap for easy diaper changes. Next, there is a small weight on the center of the chest, which mimics the feel of mom or dad’s palm gently resting on the baby and providing added comfort. Plus, the shoulder straps have two sets of snap closures for adjustment as your baby grows.

This sleep sack is made with 100% Peruvian cotton, is free of any toxins, and is medium weight for general, everyday use. It comes in 2 sizes and 7 different colors.

Pros:

  • Provides comfort even when mom and dad aren’t there

Cons:

  • Teething babies may chew on snaps

Disney Wearable Blanket

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The Disney Wearable Blanket is an example of a basic, medium-weight sleep sack. It is made from polyester and microfleece, and it has a v-shaped design with no sleeves. The full-length zipper extends down the center of the sack and ends near the bottom for easy diaper changes. This sleep sack comes in 2 sizes and 7 designs and colors, each featuring an embroidered image of a different Disney character, such as Dumbo, The Little Mermaid, and Pooh Bear, among others.

Pros:

  • Soft and warm
  • Features favorite Disney characters

Cons:

  • Zipper may be defective

SwaddleDesigns Sleeping Sack

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The Swaddle Designs Sleeping Sack is made from polyester microfiber and is suited for colder temperatures. It has a velvet fleece and puffy quilted feel and satin-lined edges for maximum comfort. This sleeveless sleep sack has an eggplant shape and a two-way zipper down the center of the sack for easy diaper changes. The SwaddleDesigns Sleeping Sack gives your baby the freedom he or she needs when transitioning from swaddling. It is available in 3 sizes and 13 different colors and designs.

Pros:

  • Soft and warm
  • Easy to clean
  • Keeps baby warm without overheating

Cons:

  • Fabric may shed

What Should You Use A Sleep Sack With Your Baby?

Safety is the number 1 reason to use a sleep sack with your baby, but there are several other advantages as well. To put it simply, sleep sacks make parenting easier. First, they ensure that your baby stays warm and cozy all night or during naps, which also keeps your baby asleep longer. And, when your baby sleeps longer, you get the necessary break or sleep that you need—no more waking up when their blanket falls off.

Additionally, sleep sacks can grow with your baby. As mentioned earlier, sleep sacks are the perfect tool for transitioning your baby out of swaddling. Plus, when babies grow into toddlers, they tend to kick their blankets off, and sleep sacks prevent that. And, if you want to save some money, there are adjustable sleep sacks that can adapt to all of your baby’s stages.

Lastly, sleep sacks are perfect for travel. At a time when you have enough belongings to carry, one less droppable item can be a big help. Whether you are traveling by air, train, car, or boat, and no matter where you are going, your baby can get the comfortable sleep he or she is used to at home without a loose blanket that could get lost or tangled in stroller wheels.

Sleep Sacks Final Thoughts

Although the invention of the sleep sack came out of an unthinkable tragedy, the good that the product has done cannot be discounted. There is no doubt that sleep sacks can make parenting much easier and less stressful. With all of the sleep sacks on the market, there is one (or several!) that can meet the needs of you and your baby. Switch out the baby blanket and replace it with a safer, more convenient option… doctor’s orders!

About Marissa Gvozdenovich Marissa is an English teacher and writer. She enjoys the Florida beach life with her husband and puppy.


New parenting can be extremely stressful, especially when preparing for your baby’s arrival, means figuring out all the new products you need to buy. Unfortunately, babies are not cheap! This can be difficult when there are many different products on the market claiming to be must-haves for your baby. A must-have for most new moms are swaddles blankets because they help keep your baby asleep at night, which in turn means more sleep for the new parents!

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  • 100% organic bamboo blankets
  • Very soft, lightweight, & breathable
  • Great large size
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  • Arrive quickly
  • Great large size
  • Become softer with each wash
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  • 3 different ways to wear
  • Many different colors & sizes
  • Great transition swaddle
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  • 100% cotton
  • Great for babies that scratch their face
  • No zippers or Velcro
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  • Eco friendly
  • 100% cotton muslin
  • Extra soft & stretchy
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This can be an absolute miracle when you’re a sleep deprived new parent! The last thing you want is to have to deal with a fussy baby when it’s finally your time to get a few hours of sleep. Plus, between waking up for feedings and diaper changes, the last thing you want is your baby waking you up in the middle of the night just because they’re a restless sleeper. A happy baby is always a happy parent too.

What’s a swaddle blanket for?

Swaddle blankets are mainly used as a way to secure your baby when you put them down to sleep. For around nine months your baby has been sleeping in the womb, a very warm and secure place! Once they are born, some have trouble adjusting to that lack of security and warm feeling. This can greatly affect their sleeping! Swaddling is wrapping your baby snugly in a blanket in order to keep them warm and feel a sense of security. This can help calm your baby, prevent them from becoming disrupted from their startle reflex, and keep them warm.

Usually now when new mother’s leave the hospital with their newborn, they’ve gotten a lesson by the hospital staff on swaddling. This can come in handy when your baby is still extremely fussy after you’ve changed their diaper, fed them, and they’ve had a nap. Swaddling them can be calming even when a baby is just overstimulated. It’s recommended to stop swaddling your baby while they’re awake when they’re about a month old, in order to keep them on track for development.

Is a Swaddle Blanket Just for Sleeping?

No! Swaddle blankets can come in handy for many other purposes other than ensuring your baby is getter better sleep. After all, these swaddle blankets are usually made of very soft and lightweight fabric, making them great for other uses.

  • A burp cloth: A swaddle blanket can easily be placed over your shoulder to clean up any spit up when you’re burping your baby. If you have a very thin blanket, just double it up to make sure you stay clean! The soft fabric keeps both of you comfortable when it could take a while for your baby to burp. Not only that, but your swaddle blanket can be used to clean up any quick messes or spit up when you need a quick rag.
  • A tummy time blanket: If you have a large swaddle blanket, this is another great use for it. This creates a great size for your baby to roll around while also keeping them cushioned under the soft fabric. Plus, swaddle blankets are usually thinner so this won’t take up a lot of room if you need a tummy time blanket on the go!
  • Nursing cover: Having a nursing cover can make your life incredibly more convenient because sometimes baby’s needs come at inconvenient times. Swaddle blankets are extremely breathable, so your baby won’t overheat while you cover them, but this will also be comfortable against your skin if you have sore nipples or breasts.
  • Stroller cover: You may think you’ve packed everything for your day out at the park, and then the sun decides to shine right on your stroller. A swaddle blanket can be a great way to cover your baby from the sun and allow them to nap while out, without blocking out air. And a swaddle blanket will easily fit in a small pocket on your stroller for on the go use.

Choosing the Best Swaddle Blanket

Although many are similar, not all swaddle blankets are made equally. There are few things you may want to keep in mind when looking for the best swaddle blanket for you and your baby. Take into consideration these qualities:

  • Safety. As a new parent or a returning parent, this is probably one of your main concerns when looking for any product related to your child. There’s a lot of safety concerns around sleep for babies, such as making sure they sleep on their back when they’re younger. This goes hand in hand with a swaddle blanket! Once your baby can roll over in their sleep, it’s recommended that you stop using a lot of these swaddle blankets. Also, ensure that whichever swaddle blanket you buy, it does not cover your baby’s face. Some swaddle blankets are luckily very lightweight that this should not cause an extreme hazard but it’s always better to be safe.
  • Size. Most swaddle blankets can range anywhere from 42 by 42 inches to 49 by 49 inches. Larger swaddle blankets can also be used as a tummy time blanket, or for other purposes like stroller covers. However, this is mainly based on personal preference and the size of your baby.
  • Type. The traditional swaddle blanket is usually made out of cotton muslin fabric that is a lightweight flat blanket. Other options include, swaddle blankets that are already in the shape of a swaddle and have flaps that replicate the wrapping of a swaddle. These usually have Velcro or some type of way to secure the swaddle blanket. If swaddling is hard for you to master, the latter options may be better!

Organic Muslin Bamboo Swaddle Blanket

These adorable Muslin swaddle blankets are made of 100% organic bamboo. This set comes with a pack of 3 breathable blankets, ensuring that your baby won’t overheat. Since these swaddle blankets are made out of Muslin bamboo, they are incredibly soft, strong, and won’t color bleed. This is great when you have baby, because as you know, everything gets dirty and you’re constantly washing items. These swaddle blankets measure 47 by 47 inches, making them great blankets for other purposes! Out for a walk with your little one in the stroller on a hot summer day? You can use this swaddle blanket as a stroller cover. With their cute patterns, these swaddle blankets are also a great gift for a baby shower!

Pros:

  • 100% organic bamboo blankets
  • Very soft, lightweight, & breathable
  • Great large size
  • Come in cute patterns
  • Great travel blankets
  • Become softer with each wash

Cons:

  • Slightly pricey

Muslin Swaddle Blankets Wanderer Set

Similar to the Muslin Bamboo Swaddle set, this set of 3 Muslin blanket set is made of 100% cotton muslin. These swaddle blankets are also 47 by 47 inches, and perfect for any baby! Their trendy design will make you and your baby a stylish duo. Not only are these blankets very soft, they’re smooth to touch, so you don’t have to worry about gruff fabric on your baby’s sensitive skin. This is a great starter pack for swaddle blankets since it comes with 3 blankets, and this company has a hassle free return policy, in case you aren’t happy with the product. As they become softer with each wash, you and your baby are guaranteed to love them!

Pros:

  • Arrive quickly
  • Great large size
  • Become softer with each wash
  • Set of 3!
  • Breathable fabric

Cons:

  • Could be more stretchy

Halo SleepSack Cotton Swaddle

This product is a little different than the traditional swaddle blanket. This SleepSack swaddle stays on your baby, instead of wrapping your baby in a swaddle blanket with the hassle of making sure you’ve made it tight enough (but not too tight) to keep them in the swaddle. The Halo SleepSack swaddle blanket is adjustable, having 3 different options for your little one. This includes: swaddle arms in, hands to face, and one or both arms out. This swaddle blanket SleepSack has an inverted zipped, so it won’t rub against your baby’s skin, but also making it extremely easy if you have to make a fast diaper change. This comes in 32 different colors and 2 different sizes!

Pros:

  • 3 different ways to wear
  • Many different colors & sizes
  • Great transition swaddle
  • Durable
  • Inexpensive

Cons:

  • Size small can ride up
  • Fleece option may be too hot

Miracle Swaddle Blanket

As the name suggests, this swaddle blanket is a miracle! If your baby is having trouble sleeping, and can slip their way out of a traditional swaddle blanket, this is a great product to combat that. Made out of 100% cotton, this swaddle blanket is sure to be exceptionally soft against your baby’s sensitive skin. This is also a great option if your baby tends to scratch their face a lot or has sever twitching that wakes them up. The Miracle Swaddle Blanket keeps your baby secure to improve sleeping, without using features that may wake them such as Velcro or zippers. This is great at keep arms inside the swaddle for better sleep!

Pros:

  • 100% cotton
  • Great for babies that scratch their face
  • No zippers or Velcro
  • Available in 4 different colors

Cons:

  • Isn’t ideal for babies that wake for night feedings/diaper changes
  • Don’t tuck in or secure at the end of the swaddle

White Muslin Baby Swaddle Blanket

Like many other swaddle blankets, this one is made with the traditional 100% soft muslin cotton. With an extremely soft feeling and a light texture, this swaddle blanket is great for delicate baby skin. This swaddle blanket is made of 2 layers, keeping the blanket durable. It measures 47 by 47 inches, making this swaddle blanket also a great blanket to take on the go to use as a covering for your baby. This particular swaddle blanket has high reviews from customers on the extreme softness of this blanket, and how this blanket gets even softer as it is washed. This muslin blanket is eco friendly as well, containing no dyes or toxins!

Pros:

  • Eco friendly
  • 100% cotton muslin
  • Extra soft & stretchy
  • Great to tie dye for shower
  • Inexpensive

Cons:

  • Only available in 1 size & color

Aden by aden + Anais Swaddle Baby Blanket

Looking for a lightweight premium feeling swaddle blanket? You’ve found the one! These blankets have the feeling of silky, soft luxury, making these blankets great for warmer weather. They are made of 100% Viscose Bamboo muslin, and become softer with each wash. This fabric is great for the warmer months, as it does not cause overheating and is incredibly gentle. Measuring 44 by 44 inches, this swaddle blanket is a little smaller than a large swaddle blanket, but due to their Visco fabric they are extremely stretchy. These swaddle blankets are also available in 6 other colors and patterns, making them great for a baby shower gift and there are gender neutral options.

Pros:

  • Very silky & soft
  • Great for warm weather
  • Inexpensive
  • Available in 6 other colors & patterns
  • Great customer service
  • Stretchy

Cons:

  • Some believe too thin
  • Seams may come undone
  • Rips easily

Habibee Newborn Swaddle Blanket

What’s better than a swaddle blanket? A swaddle blanket set. This floral swaddle blankets comes with a matching headband. While this product does have raving reviews about its softness, this set is a great buy if you’re looking for a swaddle blanket to take baby pictures with. However, they can be used for everyday use as well if you’re looking for an adorable blanket to wrap your little one in. This swaddle blanket is extremely soft, and made so it doesn’t constrict the baby to allow hip movement. It’s recommended if the swaddle blanket is moving towards your baby’s face, to tie the bottom of the blanket in a knot to get rid of the extra room. The headband has elastic to stay on the baby’s head.

Pros:

  • Available in different packs & patterns
  • Adorable swaddle for baby pictures
  • Includes matching headband
  • Comfy fabric
  • Great baby shower gift

Cons:

  • Headband may not fit most babies under 6 months
  • May fade in color after washed

Asani Baby Muslin Swaddle Blankets

On the hunt for a great gender neutral gift? This set of 100% muslin cotton is perfect. These are a great basic for any new mother or soon to be expecting mother. These swaddle blankets are lightweight, keeping the baby comfy and cool while sleeping. This is also a great safety feature, in the unfortunate case the swaddle blanket covers the baby’s face (which you should avoid at all costs), they will still be able to breathe. For a great price, this set of 3 swaddle blankets is a great deal! Measuring 48 by 48 inches, these swaddle blankets are large, making them easier to securely wrap your baby and also making them great to grow with your baby!

Pros:

  • Great quality cotton
  • Gender neutral packs
  • Inexpensive
  • Lightweight
  • Large swaddle blanket
  • Lifetime warranty

Cons:

  • Only 2 color/pattern options

SwaddleMe Original Swaddle

Another option of a swaddle blanket, is a SwaddleMe. This product is made of 100% cotton, but unlike a traditional swaddle blanket, is made in the shape of the baby already in a swaddle. This cozy product works as an experience similar to that of when the baby is in the womb. It has fabric wings that fasten with hook and loop attachments. This helps to keep the baby constrained in order to give them a better sleep. This swaddle blanket is made for babies 0-3 months, 7-14 pounds or those up to 26 inches. This can be used to swaddle with your baby’s arms in and arms out, so whatever makes them more comfortable!

Pros:

  • Great for babies that find their way out of swaddles
  • Easy to use
  • Made out of 100% cotton
  • Secure design
  • 3 different color & styles

Cons:

  • Can start to stretch out
  • Can ride up
  • Hook part of Velcro can grab fabric & ruin it

Parenting is already hard, and searching for products online can just add to that stress. Swaddle blankets seem like they should be such an easy buy! After all, they are a blanket right? However swaddling is much more of an activity then just a blanket. This keeps the baby warm, secure, calm, and improves sleeping. Swaddling blankets can be used to swaddle the baby for naps or when sleeping at night, but they can also be used for other purposes. If you are looking for a traditional square swaddle blanket, you can use them as a burp cloth, a tummy time blanket, a stroller cover, or a nursing cover.

Other swaddle blankets, already made in the form of a swaddle are mainly bought by those having trouble with their babies sneaking out of their swaddles. If your baby continues to kick loose out of their swaddle, get an arm out of their swaddle, or scratch their face while sleeping, these are great options. All in all, the swaddle blanket you choose to buy has to be a swaddle blanket that your baby loves as well. Some babies may be particular to certain brands or kinds of blankets. Making sure the swaddle blanket you buy is returnable, is especially important if you have a picky little one. As everyone likes to say, when the little one is happy, Mommy is happy.

About Kelsey Woodbridge Kelsey is a lover of anything comfy, especially her bed. In fact, you will most likely find her in her bed drafting a new article, watching New Girl, or just lounging in fuzzy socks.