What type of baby crib mattress are you looking for?

Best Organic Crib Mattress

Roslyn's Take

theHUB's baby and toddler writer

So you’ve started your search for what is probably the most important purchase you’ll make for your baby and you’re no doubt overwhelmed by all the options. You may want to consider an organic mattress, a type growing in popularity because they contain fewer toxins than their conventional counterparts[1], offering a healthier sleep environment for your baby.

I love this Simmons model because it has a certified organic cotton cover that is water-resistant while remaining free of PVC, which is considered one of the most toxic plastics[2]. What sets it apart from other organic mattresses is its fibre core that’s 99% free of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can cause allergies or harm the respiratory system[3].

Rounding out the bells and whistles is the mattress convertibility, featuring an extra firm side for infants and a softer side for toddlers. It basically does everything but rock your baby to sleep!

What Customers Said

The Draw

This mattress has gone through 3 kids, the best investment ever!! I highly recommend this mattress to everyone.

–Trudy, Walmart customer

The Downside

Comfy, but not the least bit water resistant. You definitely will want to get a waterproof mattress cover with this line of mattresses.

–Robert & Josee, Walmart customers

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Why We Love It

  • It has a bonded polyester core and breathable organic cotton cover that promotes airflow, helping to prevent your baby from overheating.
  • The lightest of our organic mattresses picks, making sheet changes a breeze.
  • Boasts an eco-friendly core made from recycled fibres that is naturally mold- and mildew-resistant.

Things To Consider

  • Because it is so lightweight, it may not be as dense as other foam mattresses, contributing to a shorter lifespan.
  • Waterproofing and stain resistance are sacrificed for breathability, so cleaning is more involved than a simple wipe-down. If you prefer a stain resistant mattress for your baby, there are many great options to choose from.

Why We Love It

  • The benefits of an organic crib mattress while being the most affordable on our list.
  • It’s reversible, extending the lifespan and giving you even more bang for your buck.
  • The mattress is made in Canada, so you can feel proud of supporting a business close to home.

Things To Consider

  • The mattress costs less than our top pick but there is no waterproofing, which is a necessity for some parents (and babies!)
  • While it is meant to last into toddlerhood, the soft, cotton exterior is not as easy to clean as the Simmons Naturally Safer mattress and therefore, maintaining long-term freshness takes more effort.

Best Waterproof or Stain-Resistant Mattress

Roslyn's Take

theHUB's baby and toddler writer

Not only does this high-density foam crib mattress feature an extra firm surface for your infant’s safety, but the waterproof vinyl cover is easy to clean and the price is right. Perfect for babies who tend to have diaper leaks, the super lightweight mattress weighs a mere 7 lb, making late-night sheet swaps a cinch.

The icing on the cake is that it doesn’t contain any harmful chemical flame retardants and it is Greenguard certified, meaning that it satisfies a standard for low chemical emissions into the air during use[4].

What Customers Said

The Draw

My husband and I are really pleased with our mattress. It fits snuggly in our crib, is firm, and has a nice wetness-resistant cover. And, most importantly, we feel it is a safe mattress for our little girl because the top material does not move or bunch.

–SoExcited4Baby, Walmart customer

The Downside

I do not particularly like the plastic covering but again this is a convenience when you consider the little ‘accidents’ your infant may have – the covering fits perfectly so there is no rustling sound.

–IslandShopperMel01, Walmart customer

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Why We Love It

  • The foam crib mattress has a hypoallergenic and antibacterial waterproof cover to prevent the growth of mold and mildew—a feature not found on the Safety 1st Sweet Dreams Mattress. If you baby has sensitive skin, there are lots of other great hypoallergenic mattresses you could consider, too.
  • Lock-stitched binding around the edges keeps the mattress sealed and won’t pop open like heat-sealed edges can.
  • This mattress is Greenguard Gold certified, so you can rest easy knowing it has low chemical emissions that can harm your baby.

Things To Consider

  • Waterproof plastic covers can lead to a colder sleep surface for your baby. For a warmer sleep, consider the water-resistant Simmons organic mattress.
  • Although it will cost extra, another option is to buy a cotton mattress pad to give you greater peace of mind during sleep time.
  • Plastic covers can crack over time, so keep an eye out for tears that could allow moisture into the mattress core.

Why We Love It

  • The lead-free waterproof cover wipes down easily with soap and water, making it resistant to poop stains. (Yes, we said poop!)
  • Has an air pocket to maintain airflow and freshness—a nice feature not found in the other two waterproof mattresses.
  • As the only innerspring coil waterproof mattress on our list, it tends to provide a more comfortable sleep surface for baby.

Things To Consider

  • 80 coil count is on the low end for an innerspring mattress, meaning it is less firm than others and may be better for a baby over one-year-old when the risk of SIDS decreases[5]. The lower coil count can also lead to sagging and shapelessness with use, resulting in a less durable mattress.
  • There are no vents in the mattress, which can lead to an overly warm sleeping surface for baby.

Best Greenguard Mattress

Roslyn's Take

theHUB's baby and toddler writer

While this mattress is the most expensive one on the list, the old adage, “you get what you pay for,” rings true. The mattress is Greenguard Gold certified, meaning that it meets standards for low chemical emissions resulting in interior air quality that is safe for babies.

While that alone might encourage you to buy, the high quality mattress is also made of heavy gauge steel coils and support rods for maximum durability and firmness. And finally, it features a special antibacterial and waterproof cover for the cleanest baby bed possible. All considered, it’s an easy recommendation!

What Customers Said

The Draw

This is one of the best mattresses that I have ever purchased. Super firm, waterproof, fits the crib snuggly and handles all the jumping that my girls do several times a day in their cribs. Very happy with my purchase.

–Mothertomany, Walmart customer

The Downside

Unfortunately this mattress was not right for my baby. Because of the fabric, which is not breathable, my baby was so hot and would wake up so sweaty. I guess I did not know enough about mattresses before I bought this one. I had to buy another mattress which is made with a breathable fabric and now he is not hot and sweaty!

–Holly27, Walmart.ca customer

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Why We Love It

  • This Greenguard Gold mattress is convertible, so it’s a good investment and more versatile than the Sealy Baby Ultra Rest Crib Mattress.
  • The cover is made from food-safe PEVA plastic[6] for a toxin-free sleep surface.
  • Lightweight for easy maneuverability, and also the lightest Greenguard mattress on our list.

Things To Consider

  • The mattress is on the high end of the allowable standard size range so make sure to measure your crib before you buy.
  • Both the infant and toddler sides are very firm so if you’re after something plusher for your toddler, you may want to consider other mattresses.
  • Plastic covering does not allow for as much airflow, possibly resulting in a hotter sleep surface.

Why We Love It

  • The mattress has two waterproof hypoallergenic top layers to stop allergens in their tracks.
  • 150 coil count provides a good level of firmness for infants, and is nearly double the coils of the Dream On Me Twilight Crib.
  • At only 12.5 lbs this mattress is relatively lightweight for an innerspring mattress, and weighs about 2 lb less than the Sealy Baby Ultra Rest Mattress.

Things To Consider

  • While all Sealy mattresses boast Greenguard Gold certification, the Sealy Baby Ultra Rest model features antibacterial protection, while this one does not. But it does have a waterproof and stain-resistant cover—and a cheaper price tag!
  • The plastic cover can be noisy when your baby moves.
  • Some reviewers have reported sagging over time, so keep an eye out for the mattress firmness.

Frequently Asked Questions

Mattress size

  • Are crib mattresses a standard size?

    In Canada, cribs and crib mattress sizes are standardized for safety reasons. By law, crib mattresses can be no more than six inches (15 cm thick) and should measure between 27 5/8 in – 28 5/8 in wide, and 51 3/4 in – 53 in long.[7]

    But, despite the standardization, variations in mattress and crib size can occur, so you should always make sure that the gap between your mattress and crib is no more than 3 cm. Gaps over 3 cm can cause your baby’s face to become trapped, posing a suffocation risk.[8]

    Find out more about crib mattress size in our buying guide.

  • Are a crib mattress and toddler bed mattress the same size?

    Generally, most toddler beds have the same dimensions as a full-size crib mattress (28 in x 52 in on average), so, crib mattresses should fit your toddler bed. Many manufacturers offer convertible mattresses that feature a firm side for infants and a softer side for toddlers, like this one by Dream on Me.

    But, because toddler bed measurements aren’t standardized, check that the bed dimensions accommodate your crib mattress before you add to cart.

Mattress firmness

  • Should a baby mattress be firm or soft?

    Firmness is king when it comes to crib mattresses. While your instinct might be to provide your delicate newborn with the softest baby bed possible, be aware that a plush sleep surface can conform to your baby’s head, causing a suffocation risk.[5]

    Your baby’s developing bones also need the extra support provided by a firm mattress. Remember that if your baby’s mattress feels like something you would want to sleep on, it’s likely too soft for them.

  • How firm should a baby crib mattress be?

    No matter whether you are buying a foam mattress or an innerspring mattress, you should buy the firmest and densest mattress you can afford.

    When shopping online, look for a foam mattress with a density of at least 1.5 lb per cubic foot to provide the safest sleep surface for your baby.[9] Innerspring mattresses are measured by their steel gauge—the lower the number, the thicker the springs. A mattress with a gauge of 15.5 or below will provide the extra firm sleep surface that infants require.

    If shopping in-store, press down on the mattress; it should snap back into shape when you remove your hand. Likewise, your hand shouldn’t leave an indent.

Foam and coil mattresses

  • Are foam crib mattresses safe?

    Yes, foam mattresses are safe for your baby, as long as they’re firm enough. A high-density mattress that holds at least 1.5 lb per cubic foot is the safest sleep surface for your baby.[9] To calculate the density of a foam mattress, you divide the weight of the foam by its width x height x length. Density is expressed by the weight per cubic foot, here’s an easy way to express the calculation:

    Weight ÷ Width x Height x Length = Density

  • Is foam or coil better for a crib mattress?

    Neither type of mattress is better than the other, as long as you make firmness your top priority. There are, however, advantages to each.

    A firm, high-density foam mattress will weigh as much as half its innerspring counterpart, which saves you the heavy lifting when a diaper leak happens in the wee hours and you have to change the crib sheet.

    Innerspring coil mattresses are known for their stable and supportive sleep surface, especially if they have border rods. They tend to be more durable than a foam mattress in the long-run.

    See our Crib Mattress Guide for more details on foam vs. coil.

Convertible crib mattress

  • Is a 2-stage crib mattress necessary?

    No, a 2-stage or convertible crib mattress isn’t necessary. This type of mattress (with a firm side for infants and a soft side for toddlers), provides a lot of bang for your buck. But, it’s only worth buying one if you plan on using it until your baby’s ready to upgrade to an adult bed.

    If you’d rather usher your tot from their crib right into a twin bed, skipping a toddler bed altogether, you’ll get less value out of a 2-stage crib mattress.

  • When can you flip a crib mattress?

    If you’ve chosen a convertible mattress (which has a plush side for infants and a firm side for toddlers), you want to ensure your baby is ready before flipping. Generally, it is only considered safe to do so after your baby has turned one, but it’s important to first speak with your doctor who will determine if they’re ready based on their assessment.

Crib mattress safety

  • Do crib mattresses expire?

    Crib mattresses don’t expire, but the government of Canada says to regularly check older mattresses to ensure it isn’t worn out or too soft, which could pose a suffocation risk to your baby.[8]

    While research is still ongoing, used crib mattresses (especially from outside your own home), have been linked to a higher risk of SIDS and experts think it’s because of bacteria growing inside the mattress as a result of trapped moisture.[10]

  • Should you get a new mattress for each baby?

    It’s not necessary but for maximum safety, yes, ideally, every baby should have a new mattress. Older mattresses have an increased likelihood of carrying bacteria and germs that can be harmful to your baby. That being said, budgets don’t always allow for a new mattress. Before reusing a mattress, inspect it to make sure it’s still firm, has no sags and doesn’t contain stains.

    It’s also a good idea to only reuse a crib mattress that has been used by your other children, in your own home. Some studies link used mattresses from outside the home to a higher risk of SIDS, due to harmful bacteria growing inside.[10]

    If your used mattress is waterproof and antibacterial, it’s likely to be in more sanitary condition than mattresses without these protections. If you have to reuse a mattress for baby number two, consider buying a new mattress cover to go over it.

Crib mattress quality

  • What is the best mattress for a baby crib?

    There is no one perfect mattress to suit every baby, it really comes down to you and your baby’s specific needs. What is essential, though, is crib mattress firmness. A good rule of thumb is to buy the firmest mattress you can afford, making sure it adheres to the two-finger rule—the gap between your mattress and the crib should be no wider than two fingers (or 3 cm) to prevent the risk of suffocation.[8] Then, it’s about considering mattress features that work best for your baby.

    If they tend to have a leaky diaper, a waterproof mattress should be high up on your list. For a more hygienic option, you could get an organic mattress. Likewise, if your baby has sensitive skin, a mattress with a hypoallergenic cover would help them sleep better.

  • How much should I spend on a crib mattress?

    A quality mattress doesn’t have to break the bank because there are tons of good picks in the $60 to $150 range. But, like most purchases, the more you spend, the more bells and whistles are available to you. These special features include organic and eco-friendly materials, Greenguard certification, airflow pockets and more.

Crib mattress features

  • Do I need a breathable crib mattress?

    Breathability is an important component of your baby’s safe sleep, as it helps keep your baby cool at night, but it comes with trade-offs. A breathable mattress will not be 100% waterproof because plastic covers aren’t breathable. Waterproof mattresses are, however, easy to clean and they stop moisture from entering the core, preventing harmful mould and bacteria growth.

    Some 2-stage mattresses have the best of both words—a breathable side for infants and a waterproof side for toddlers. A good example is this Dream on Me convertible coil spring mattress.

  • What is a Greenguard crib mattress?

    Choosing a Greenguard-certified mattress means it’s been held to the highest standards for low chemical emissions and healthier air quality for your baby. The certification process is managed by the Greenguard Environmental Institute, a reputable third party group that rigorously tests products for harmful toxins.

    There are two certification levels: Greenguard, which ensures the product meets strict emissions limits, and the more stringent Greenguard Gold, which also considers safety factors for sensitive individuals including children. Many affordable crib mattresses, like this Safety 1st Grow with Me one, have the Gold certification.

    To explore this topic further, our Crib Mattress Buying Guide provides additional details on Greenguard certification.

  • Does my baby need an organic crib mattress?

    While your baby doesn’t need an organic crib mattress, a truly organic mattress provides a healthier sleep environment for your baby. That’s because, generally, these mattresses are free from harmful chemical flame retardants and are made from organically grown, non-toxic materials like cotton, natural latex, coir or bamboo.

    Be aware, though, that many mattresses labelled organic simply feature an organic cotton cover around a synthetic core. Fully organic mattresses can start upwards of $300, compared to mattresses with organic covers that can be half the price or less. A good example is this Simmons Naturally Safer crib mattress with an organic cotton cover around a synthetic core that is 99.9% free of harmful emissions.

Article Sources

  1. SleepJunkie. Should you choose an organic mattress?
  2. HealthyChild. The best organic crib mattress is safe and non-toxic for your baby.
  3. US Environmental Protection Agency. Volatile organic compounds’ impact on indoor air quality.
  4. Greenguard. Greenguard Certification Program.
  5. Government of Canada. Joint Statement on Safe Sleep.
  6. Essential Home and Garden. What is PEVA? Is It Safe And What Is In It?
  7. Government of Canada. Is your child safe? Sleep time.
  8. Government of Canada. Cribs, cradles and bassinets.
  9. The Bump. How to Buy a Crib Mattress.
  10. BMJ. Used infant mattresses and sudden infant death syndrome in Scotland: case-control study.

How we choose products: Simply put, we don’t recommend any products we wouldn’t buy ourselves. Our writers leverage a number of sources as a starting point, including reputable third-party reviews, Walmart.ca user reviews, and Walmart Canada’s category specialists. theHUB editorial staff has final say for all products included in this guide.

Any product claims noted are provided by the manufacturer, unless otherwise stated.

Prices shown are subject to change. Please check Walmart.ca for the latest pricing.

This article is intended as general information. Always be sure to read and follow the label(s)/instruction(s) that accompany your product(s). Walmart will not be responsible for any injury or damage caused by this activity.