Best of Baby 2015: Gear

If babies came with instruction manuals, a good 15 pages would be devoted to the "stuff" they need: car seats, strollers, carriers, swings, rockers and the list goes on. Luckily, we've found the best gear that makes traveling or staying put with baby safe and comfortable and your life a little easier. Sweet!
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Updated October 13, 2020
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If babies came with instruction manuals, a good 15 pages would be devoted to the “stuff” they need. Car seats, strollers, carriers, swings, rockers and the list goes on. Luckily, we’ve found the best gear that makes traveling with baby safe and comfortable and sourced the products that’ll keep baby entertained at home.


Best of Baby 2015: Gear

Image: Mamas & Papas

Stroller: Mamas & Papas Armadillo Flip

Best Lightweight Stroller

City moms rejoice — this “big little stroller” has the most compact fold of any stroller on the market. And the one-handed open works no matter which direction you choose to face the seat. What we love:

  • It’s designed to accommodate newborns to four-year-olds, so it’s both bassinet and car seat compatible

Buy it: $395,

Image: Britax B Agile

Stroller: Britax B Agile

Best Travel System

This reliable stroller features the Click & Go system that makes it easy to use and compatible with nearly every other major brand. Features we love:

  • The three-wheel design makes this stroller easy to stop, pivot and turn

Buy it: $400,

Image: Vista

Stroller: Uppababy Vista

Most Versatile

We put Vista’s “one for all” promise to the test and it more than passed — for two babies, a toddler and a baby and, yes, even three kids. What we love:

  • Shock-absorbent wheels and rear suspension make this one smooth ride no matter how many kids are in tow

Buy it: from $820,

Image: Bumbleride

Stroller: Bumbleride Indie Twin

Best Double

A twin stroller doesn’t have to be the size of a Hummer to do double-duty. Case in point: the Bumbleride Indie is narrow enough to navigate the grocery store aisle, but doesn’t sacrifice seating room or cargo space. What we love:

  • The 12-inch wheels are made to handle any terrain

Buy it: $1,321,

Image: BOB

Stroller: BOB Revolution Pro

Best Jogger

This jogger will have you eating hills for breakfast thanks to the hand-activated rear drum brakes that help conquer inclines. It’s just as great on flat terrain too. What we love:

  • It’s not just for jogging; turn it into a travel system with the Accessory Adaptor, BOB car seats and snack trays

Buy it: $540,

Image: Chicco

Car Seat: Chicco KeyFit 30

Best Infant Car Seat

Just one click, and you know the KeyFit is locked in place. It’s that easy installation, plus extra-thick cushioning that make this car seat a standout. Features we love:

  • This seat comes in 17(!) different colors

Buy it: $400,

Image: Peg-Perego

Car Seat: Peg-Perego Share Primo Viaggio Convertible

Best Convertible Car Seat

The stylish convertible seat has all the safety features for peace of mind and its roomy seat keeps baby rear-facing longer — which is the recommended car seat orientation until your child reaches age 2. What we love:

  • 10 adjustable positions, even while your child is in the seat

Buy it: $350,

Image: Urbini

Car Seat: Urbini Petal

Most Affordable

Easy installation and ease of use earn this lightweight seat — just eight pounds — high marks. (An additional insert can be used for preemies.) What we love:

  • Wide openings make threading the seatbelt so easy

Buy it: $100,

Image: Mamas & Papas

Bouncer: Mamas & Papas Apollo Bouncer

Most Advanced

Keep baby entertained with fun new sounds and hanging plush toys. Once baby is ready to doze, turn on the vibrating function and lullabies to lull him to sleep. What we love:

  • It’s way more versatile than your standard bouncer
  • The music book insert lets you choose from four different melodies, catering to nap time or play time

Buy it: $250,

Image: BabyBjörn

Bouncer: BabyBjörn Bouncer Balance Soft

Best Design

Modern and ergonomic, this sleek bouncer requires no batteries; baby’s own movements power the bouncing. Plus, it folds completely flat for easy travel and storage. What we love:

  • Once baby outgrows this, it can be used as a chair

Buy it: $200,

Image: Babyhome

Bouncer: Babyhome Onfour Babysitter Bouncer

Best On-the-Go

The wheels really sold us on this stylish bouncer. Move it around the room or from one room to another without waking up baby. It adjusts to four different positions, one of which lets baby lay completely flat.

Buy it: $130,

Image: Ingenuity

Swing: Ingenuity Power Adapt Portable Swing

Most Versatile

Between the five swing speed options, eight melodies and three nature sounds, there’s plenty to keep baby entertained while you take a “me” break. It also helps that the swing blends in with almost any decor.

Buy it: $90,

Image: Fisher Price

Swing: Fisher Price Power Plus SpaceSaver Cradle ’n Swing

Most Compact

More compact than most, the SpaceSaver gives you all of the options — choose from six swing speeds and 10 sounds — with a smaller footprint. What we love:

  • It converts to swing in two directions: the classic front-to-back motion or as a side-to-side cradle

Buy it: $95,

Image: 4Moms

Swing: 4MomsRockaRoo

Most Advanced

As you probably guessed from the name, this rocks rather than swings. And with an MP3 hookup, you can literally rock out right alongside baby. What we love:

  • It’s designed so baby experiences more motion up by her head, enhancing the rocking experience

Buy it: $179,

Image: BabyBjörn

Carrier: BabyBjörn Baby Carrier WE

Grows With Baby

The life span of a baby product is often short — when baby grows out of it, that’s it. That’s why the WE carrier is notable — it grows with baby until age 3. What we love:

  • It’s designed for you to use unaided, even for back-carrying positions
  • The carrier can open from the front so you can seamlessly slip baby out without waking her up

Buy it: $140,

Image: Baby K'Tan

Carrier: Baby K'Tan ACTIVE Carrier

Best Wrap

Lots of wraps come with instruction booklets that feel like advanced origami. So when one comes along that slips on your body like a T-shirt and you tuck baby inside, we couldn’t not share this simple ingenuity with fellow moms. What we love:

  • The double loop design means baby is extra secure
  • It offers UV protection for baby’s delicate skin

Buy it: $60,

Image: líllébaby

Carrier: Líllébaby COMPLETE All Seasons

Most Comfortable

This carrier was designed with your comfort in mind. The center panel can be unzipped to keep you cool in the summer, or zipped up to retain heat in colder months. What we love:

  • Special lumbar support — coupled with the light 1.3 pound weight — is a back saver
  • Choose from six different carrying positions

Buy it: $135,

Image: 4Moms

Pack and Play: 4Moms Breeze

Best Overall

The name says it all — it’s so easy to set up and stash away, it’ll convince you that traveling as a family isn’t… crazy. What we love:

  • An easy-to-grip handlebar that retracts and opens the playard in one motion
  • It comes with a bassinet and leak-proof changing pad, so this is your one-stop baby station when you’re traveling

Buy it: $300,

Image: Ingenuity

Pack and Play: Ingenuity Washable Play Yard Deluxe with Dream Centre

Most Bang for Your Buck

Think of this as a portable nursery: attach a Dream Center bassinet (with optional toys), a changing table and an organizing tray right on top, and baby is set wherever he is. Other added conveniences include the washable fabric that unzips easily for laundering. What we love:

  • The sound station (five melodies and three natural sounds) is an added sleep aid for baby

Buy it: $180,

Image: KidCo

Pack and Play: KidCo Travel Pod

Best On-the-Go

There’s nothing complicated about this play yard. Sure, it doesn’t open in one motion, but the easy transport makes up for it. And at just 10.5 pounds, this one’s great for overnight travel.

Buy it: $170,

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