We tested each product over three months using a hands-on side-by-side comparison method. Using the products alongside one another allowed us to compare more thoroughly. We scored each bassinet according to five separate metrics, which we further broke down into subcategories for greater accuracy and detail.
We ultimately wanted to assess how well each product performed day-to-day. We looked at details such as accessibility from the parent bed, size, and weight as it relates to the ability to move the product from room to room or for travel, ease of cleaning, and any extra features and how well they functioned.
We considered the materials in and around the sleeping area and whether or not these materials could impair or inhibit a baby's ability to breathe. This observation focuses primarily on the design and construction of the sidewall materials. While most of the options had mesh sidewalls or wood slats, some have fabric surrounds, and at least one has a padded inner liner covered in a thick canvas exterior.
We tested the mattress and fabric of each product as it comes without accessories. We measure compression using a 15 lb weight to imitate the infant's weight and use formulas to find the difference in height between compressed and non-compressed sections of the mattress. We assess the fit of the mattresses inside the sleeping area. Using the two-finger rule: if we could fit more than two fingers between the edge of the mattress and the sidewall, the product got a lower score.
We also made efforts to push the mattress to one side or place pressure on the sidewalls, attempting to mimic a sleeping infant's possible movements. We wanted to determine if a baby could position themselves in such a way that could potentially cause injury or death. Though not foolproof or a guarantee, we think it is a good start and valuable information.
We take a close look at the finer details of each product to assess things like sturdiness, the integrity of the materials and craftsmanship, and attention to detail and indications of quality control. The scores pull from a side-by-side comparison of the bassinets and how they appear and function as a standalone product. While this is somewhat subjective, the difference between products is evident.
We've researched each product with their eco-health in mind, specifically what materials they use and what those materials may contain, like concerning chemicals or substances that can potentially off-gas or be harmful to babies. These include but are not limited to flame retardants and VOCs from MDF materials.