In the first year of life, your baby will do a lot of growing, learning, and exploring. They’ll learn to walk, sprout teeth, and eat solid foods . Your child will receive tons upon tons of toys and clothes. But no toy is as important as their play gym! Why the best baby play mat is so important one may ask. It’s important because it helps your child to engage in something known as “tummy time”!
Tummy time helps your child to develop that much-needed neck, head, back, leg, and arm muscles needed to propel them towards crawling and eventually walking. Each mat is different some come with sounds and lights.
While others are equipped with dangling toys and balls to play with. Whichever mat you choose to purchase you will rest easy knowing it’s helping your little one develop those all-important fine motor skills that you read about.
Play gyms come in all shapes, sizes, and colors, but if making the choice sounds stressful there’s no need to worry. We researched the best baby play mats and listed them all right here in this article for you.
Now all you have to do is choose one!
In A Hurry? Here’s The Winner From 20 Hours Of Research
Baby Care Play Mat
Why is it better?
- Non-toxic material
- 15 different colors
- 2 different sizes
The Lineup At A Glance
10 Best Baby Play Mat Reviews
1. Baby Care Play Mat- Non-toxic
Tummy time just got so much better with this one. If your child needs something fun and interactive this is the mat for you.
- Age appropriate
- Made for hardwood floors
- The color is wrong
- Isn’t waterproof
Not only is this mat non-toxic it is precisely engineered to address all of the baby’s developmental needs. It encourages your child to reach and move their toys independently. Meaning it helps baby repeat essential movements like lifting their heads, strengthening of the shoulders, chest, and upper body.
It also helps to stimulate your child in terms of wanting to move around and be active!
In addition, this playland is recommended for all children ages 0+ and up that need help working on the coordination and development of their motor skills. It features hidden pockets so that the detachable toys are easy to store whilst trying to transport this set.
Also, it comes with a carrying case so that no tears or toys are lost while your moving it from place to place. Hence, its super soft padding makes it comfortable for your baby to lay on for long periods of playtime.
The music comes with a silent option if you’d rather opt for quiet tummy time every now and then. Lastly, the whole system is machine washable. If none of that has you sole on this product check out these parent reviews :
“I love this tummy time mat. It is just the right size for baby easy to fuld up and put away.”
“Five Stars! Perfect for my son!”
2. Fisher Price Deluxe Kick n Play – Playmat with lights & music
Fishing for a great tummy time mat that is made by a well-known company. Well, you just caught the right fish with Fisher Price!
- A great gift
- Versatile function
- Bad quality
- Came with the wrong parts
Fisher Price creates products designed to give your child the best start that they could possibly get in life. Parenting is about helping them through their growth and journey and sometimes we as parents wont have all the answers.
This question, however, has been answered for you. Fisher Price wants to help parents everywhere by providing them with premium tested and proven products for children. That is to say, the toys are made for children from infants to preschoolers.
In addition, the best way to teach your child is through play and having fun!
This mat reaches 4 different levels of development. Sensory due to the bright colors, textures, songs, sounds, and phrases that can be heard when they are playing with this mat. Gross motor skills also because the toy is designed to stimulate your child to reach, kick, and push up!
Curiosity & wonder because when a baby hears a song or sees something brightly colored they gravitate towards it and spend time trying to figure it out. And last but not least it stimulates early learning with the phrases and songs that play from the mat.
Need a bit more evidence well here it is :
“My 3-month old daughter has grown to LOVE this piano mat! She can lay there for 20-30 minutes just kicking away!”
“My baby is such a kicker, I knew he’d love one of these playmats with something to kick, and he totally digs it !”
3. Fisher Price To Go-Dome – Infant playmat
Another Fisher Price product that is most certainly sure to be fun and engaging for any child!
- Age appropriate
- Lasts long
- Not for an active child
- Tough to take apart.
Dr. Brown’s Original has a 2-piece vent system that keeps babies comfortable during feedings. It’s been an effective solution for colicky babies or those who spit-up a lot and often. With these bottles, air never comes in contact with the breast milk or formula which preserves all the nutrients from the milk.
Babies need something to play on even when they are out and about with mom, dad, or other family members. This on the go mat features a dome shape that will keep your child comfortable and secure in any setting outside of your home!
In addition, the padding and overhead canopy protect your child from the changing weather and any friendly animals that may be curious about the dome sphere. The toys dangling above teach baby to reach and grasp for things as they swing back and forth in brilliant color!
The toys can be easily removed and placed within a closer reaching distance for your child to play with !
In conclusion, this mat is great for camping, picnics, or the beach. When your ready to go and your child is done playing with it just fold it and pick it up by the two handles that are attached to the bottom on either side of the dome.
Here are some reviews from parents that chose this set for their child:
“Well priced. Wonderful quality!”
“Great alternative to a pack-and-play.This is awesome !”
4. Bright Starts Zippy Zoo Activity Gym – Bright stars baby play mat
Whooo! Whooo wouldn’t want to have fun at the zoo with this special toy zippy zoo mat!
- Easy to clean
- Easy to assemble
- Cheap alternative
- Owl doesn’t play
If animals and adventure in the jungle captivates your child’s attention then this mat is sure to be a hit! It’s like being in the jungle book without all the mean tigers replaced with tons of active fun!
The mat becomes so much more than just for tummy time it becomes an area where your child can sit and play imaginative and endless activities!
Your wild child will love playing with the hanging toys that it comes with as well as making faces in the baby mirror.
Some of the toys even come equipped to be used as makeshift rattles. With four built in melodies a boring playtime just turned into a safari adventure.
Lastly, it comes with a spiral bead chaser and a leaf-shaped tether for children beginning to get teeth.Let’s take a glance at some reviews from parents like you :
“Baby approved ! My baby loves this thing !”
“It’s one of his favorite toys and it’s a great price too!”
5. Bright Starts Charming Chirps – Pink baby play mat
Little girls are made of sugar spice frilly socks and flowers! Oh yeah and pink play mats too!
- Easy to fold
- Last long
- Breaks easily
- Missing pieces
Help your baby flight to new heights with this playmate and it’s chirping features! This toy encourages lots of fun whether that’s on their stomach or laying on their back.
In comes with five plush removable hanging toys and a baby safe mirror that baby can enjoy making silly faces in.
In addition, the owl comes equipped with 4 different melodies and a ladybug painted bead chaser. This toy has extra loops so that other hanging toys of your choice are able to be attached to it!
And the sweetest part of the deal besides the fact that it’s for your little bird is that when it is purchased it goes to support the power mom breast cancer program!
A few real life reviews for you :
“A gift that the parents and baby both loved !”
“ Our daughter can’t get enough of the owl !”
6. Infantino Discover & Play Activity Mirror – Turtle baby play mat
Not quite ready to commit to purchasing a whole mat? How about starting with a simple playtime mirror!
- Lightweight material
- Great price
- A bit warped
- Choking hazard beads inside
Not all children like tummy time mats some like to spend their tummy time on the couch or maybe the bed. If that’s your child, you can still get some tummy time perks without the mat with this mirror!
This turtle shape mirror is just that a turtle. With bright charming colors and a padded interior so that it is easy for your child to handle and play with!
In addition, the mirror is perfect for making silly and cute faces in whilst your child is comfortable snuggled up next to you on the couch or wherever tummy time takes place.
It also features attachable toys that rattle located at the bottom of the toy. The mirror comes with straps so that your able to attach it to something or you can use it to stand alone at a 90-degree angle.
If this sounds like something your child will love don’t worry we still want to show you some reviews from parents that swear by this product :
“You know that commercial where the parents yell go get backup lamby? Yeah, that’s us with this mirror!”
“We bought this mirror for tummy time and absolutely love it !”
7. Baby Einstein Caterpillar – Infant jungle gym
Baby Einstein’s products are meant for every baby genius worldwide! Even yours!
- Easy to fold
- Easy to clean
- Broken pieces
- Not worth the price
No this is not apart of the show Little Einsteins although that is a great show for children! This mat is fun and pulls your child in with all of its wonderful accessories!
It features five detachable toys that your child is able to play with or simple let them hang.
In addition, have peace of mind knowing that your child can listen to over 20 different melodies on this playmat. It helps your baby find the joy in having tummy time. This mat can be used as a ball pit or as a tunnel for your child to crawl through.
Such a versatile play mat your child will never be able to get enough of using it. Well until they get older of course, but who knows because of the durability your child may be able to hand it down to their future children!
Here are a few reviews from parents whom have purchased this baby play mat:
“My CLINGY (cuddly, sweet) one month LOVES it !”
“Great gym.Wonderful price!”
8. Infantino Twist & Fold Activity Gym – Infantino baby play mat
Infantino has done it again delivering a great product that will make you wanna do the twist and shout!
- Great quality material
- Easy to clean
- Faulty product
- Does not fold easily
This mat comes in 4 different colors and 4 different packaging styles. Now that’s what we like to call variety!
It’s incredibly easy to clean as all you have to do is remove all of the attachments then throw it into the machine and hang to air dry. It is also made of quality material which means it’s sure to last your child for a long time!
In addition, it’s a new take on a classic design. It includes plush attachable and detachable toys and has a soft padded interior for maximum comfort.
Lastly, A BPA- free teether and folds up to make traveling easier in 2 simple steps. Children from birth to one year of age are recommended to use this product to develop their skills!
Read what parents just like you have had to say about this product :
“Perfect! My son loves the crinkling noises the toys make.”
“The quality is great and it was fairly inexpensive!”
9. Baby Einstein Play Gym- Baby Einstein playmat
You thought Baby Einstein’s was done. Think again, they are just getting started with all of these great products!
- Great gift
- Easy to assemble
- Looks different than online
- Lights don’t work
This Baby Einstein play mat takes your child on an underwater sea adventure with its nautical features! Splash into fun as this toy helps your child engage and learn to use all these little muscles they have!
It comes with a whale pillow to help prop your child up so that they get used to the position that will eventually help them learn to crawl.
The bead chaser is in the shape of a crab and also comes with a toy in the shape of a sand dollar! But that’s not all it comes fitted with a rattling ring and a baby-safe mirror.
The best part of this mat is the 3-in-1 starfish that plays not 1, not 2 , but 8 different melodies for your child to move around too!
These parents had lots of aquatic fun with their child :
“Baby Einsteins has been such a reliable product through the years…”
“Fantastic and easy to build. It’s the cutest thing ever !”
10. Baby Tummy Time Mat – Most portable play mat
A simple, yet entertaining mat without all the extra stuff. What’s not to learn!
- Comfortable to lay on
- Easy to clean
- Doesn’t fold easily
- Sounds don’t work
Not only is this mat portable, but it was made to help all of the baby’s developmental needs. It encourages your child to reach to learn at their own pace. Learn things like pushing up and down. Or even better controlling their head movements from the very start.
Baby needs all of the learning they can get in those early months.
In addition, this play mat is recommended for all children ages 0 to 1 year of age and any other children that may need a little extra help developing and honing their skills!
It comes with a storage case so that it stays intact while you’re moving it from place to place or room to room. The soft padding is for maximum comfort for your baby while they lay on it for long periods of tummy time.
The music comes with an on and off switch if you’d rather opt for quiet tummy time. And the whole system is machine washable. If none of that has you sole on this product check out these parent reviews :
“Perfect size keeps baby’s attention.”
“Best play mat for what I paid. My son loves laying on it !”
How to choose the Best Baby Gym
When choosing a play mat for your child zero in on the reason that you are purchasing the play mat! Is it just so that your child has a place to lay when they are on the ground or is it for developmental reasons.
In order to make sure you purchase the right mat you have to determine price and what you think your child will like.
Will they be entertained by all the bells and whistles that come with the play mat? Or are they more entertained by ones that allow them to grab and pull things?
Another thing you want to consider is the material the mat is made out of. Is it breathable and easy to clean? As we parents know babies spit up a lot and it is a hassle when you have to completely disassemble something just to clean it.
Is the design satisfying to you, meaning how many ways can you use this mat? It may be a mat that can only be used as just that a play mat.
Make sure that the material is a breathable material that allows for any leaks or spills to easily be cleaned off of its surface. Also, the material is what allows it to easily fold and be placed into storage. Does the material house beads or any other small pieces that could potentially break off as it begins to become worn out. Which would then be a choking hazard for your child? Also, can the material be machine washable and dried or must it go through a deeper cleaning than normal?
You’ll want to make sure you don’t get a mat that is too small for your child. Most mats come with the option between the medium and large mat and all the separation between the sizes is quite large. The size may also mean that it comes with more accessories and room to hang things on it. Also, a mat that your child is bigger than would defeat the purpose of buying the mat altogether.
Set a budget. Whilst mats are on the cheaper end of items to buy for your child they can also be expensive if you’re looking for more features. The price will dictate what group of playmats you should look at. Your budget should be set so that you know exactly how much you want to spend and stick with it. It will help to narrow down the number of selections you have to go through.
Does it come with lights and music or hanging objects that your child can grab onto? Is it a mat that allows your child’s kicks to activate certain sounds and noises on the mat. Does it have a bead chaser or a removable mirror for your baby to look into while they are doing their tummy time? All of these things should be considered when you are addressing the idea of accessories and design. Can you fold it and pick it up by straps that are used the handles. Are there extra hooks available for you to place other hanging items on.
As parents, we are all for items that can function as more than just one item. It makes life a lot easier on you and your pockets in the long run. Look for a mat that is able to be used as a ball pit, or has a function that allows you to transform it into a play tunnel. A man should be able to do more than being used as a mat. It’s like getting the most use out of what you’ve purchased.
Frequently Asked Questions
Preferably babies from age 0-1 years old. As it is to encourage them to roll over and begin crawling and eventually walking.
Yes, you can use it as a tunnel, ball pit, play mat, or a mat for napping.
Yes, the extra padding inside allows for it to be used on a hardwood floor although be wary of it as a slipping hazard if stepped on.
Please check the description to the right of the picture and yes you can either choose a small or large size mat when placing your order
We hope that our list of the Best Baby Play Mats was able to provide you with some options to consider when first reaching out. While there are a lot of options out there, we are confident that our list can help you make a perfect choice.
If you’ve tried anything on our list or know something we missed, feel free to mention it in the comments below!