Last updated: September 6, 2021

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Welcome to our big cot test 2019, where we present all the cots we tested in more detail. We have compiled detailed background information for you and also added a summary of customer reviews on the web. With this, we would like to make your purchase decision easier and help you find the best cot for you.

You will also find answers to frequently asked questions in our guide. Furthermore, you will also find some important information on this page that you should definitely pay attention to if you want to buy a cot.




The most important facts

  • A cot bed is the classic among baby beds. The crib frame ensures sufficient air circulation, which protects against sudden infant death syndrome.
  • The height-adjustable slatted frame makes it easier to lift the child in and out of the cot at first. Later, the mattress sinks down to prevent the child from climbing out of the cot.
  • Most cots can be easily converted into a junior bed and thus save the purchase of a transitional cot.

The Best Cot Bed: Our Picks

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying a cot

What is a cot and who is it suitable for?

A cot bed is a baby bed that is characterised by an enclosing grid. This protects your baby from falling out. A cot is suitable for all newborns and, due to the conversion function, for children up to 7 years of age.

The classic rectangular cot offers enough space for your baby. (Image source: pexels.com / Alicia)

Most cots also have a height-adjustable mattress. This has the advantage that you don't have to bend down so low to lift the baby out of the cot. When the child grows and starts to crawl and climb, the mattress is lowered. This prevents your child from falling out of the bed. Some baby cots also have two or more removable bars.

This allows your child to get in and out of the cot independently, but is still protected by the other bars while sleeping. There are also cots that can later be converted into a junior bed by removing the bars and reducing the size of the head and foot sections. This way your toddler can sleep like the grown-ups without losing space for playing in the children's room due to a junior bed.

Some cots can be used until the child starts school.

In which sizes is the cot available?

Cots are available in two different sizes. 60cmx120cm and 70cmx140cm. Depending on how much space you have available for the cot, one or the other is more suitable for you. Visually, there is hardly any difference between the sizes. However, you can use a larger cot for your child for longer.

In addition, the large cots can be converted into a junior bed later on. This way you can bridge the time until you buy a junior bed and save the purchase costs. When your child has grown into a toddler, you simply have to remove the walls with the bars on the sides and replace them with junior side panels. This can be done in just a few steps.

Now your child can get out of and into the bed on its own without injuring itself when trying to climb. The large children's beds are usually supplied with the conversion sides. However, some manufacturers may require you to purchase them as accessories. Therefore, when buying, make sure that they are complete.

Up to what age can the cot be used?

Basically, you can use the cot for your child until the space is no longer sufficient. As a guideline, the small bed with a size of 60cmx120cm is suitable for children up to 5 years. When buying, make sure that the bed can be converted. This is not a standard feature for this size.

The large cot, 70cmx140cm, can even be used until your child is 6 years old. As a rule, the sides of the cot can always be removed and the head and foot sections can be made smaller. Below you can get a quick overview of the recommended bed sizes depending on the age of your child. The information is only a guide. If your child has a growth spurt, it is of course possible that he or she will outgrow the respective bed size before the specified age.

Age bed size
0-1 year cot 60×120 and 70×140 cm
1-3 years cot or junior bed with 60×120 and 70×140 cm
4-6 years cot with 70×140 cm or 70×160 cm
6-12 years cot with 60x200cm

What should be considered when locating the cot?

A cot should not be placed too close to a window, as then there is a risk of your child catching a draft. You should also make sure that there are no sharp objects or edges within the immediate reach of the cot. Not only your baby but also you can injure yourself.

Do not place the cot directly in front of a heater. The accumulated heat can cause your child to overheat. Your baby's little hands can also get caught in the bars of the cot and burn themselves.

What accessories do I need for the cot?

In addition to the cot, which comes with a matching slatted frame, you will also need a mattress. Some manufacturers offer combination packages that include the mattress. However, you should also pay attention to the quality of the slatted frame. The children's mattress should be free of harmful substances. You should also make sure that it has an appropriate firmness level for your baby.

The mattress should also have good air permeability. This prevents your child from not getting enough air in unfavourable lying positions or from breathing in the CO2 that he or she has exhaled. Of course, the same applies to the cover of the mattress.

You will also need a suitable sheet and a sleeping bag for your baby. Midwives and doctors advise against additional accessories because of the risk of sudden infant death syndrome. Blankets and pillows in particular carry the risk of your baby's head sinking in and not getting enough air.

Less is more, this is especially true when furnishing the baby's bed. (Image source: pixaby.com / ErikaWittlieb)

You can line the inside of the cot with a bed surround. These come in all shapes, fabrics and colours. They prevent your child from bumping against the bars. In addition, the resulting cosiness gives your baby a feeling of security.

Nest or bed surrounds protect your baby's head.

Alternatively, you can put a nest in the cot and place your baby in it. The nest gives your child support and also ensures that he or she does not bump into the bars. However, make sure that the air circulation in the cot is not impaired by any protective devices you place in the cot. Otherwise there is a risk of overheating or the CO2 rebreathing mentioned above.

The same applies to sheepskins, which are made of air-impermeable leather, and a canopy that encloses the entire bed. Of course you can attach a canopy to the cot, but make sure that it is not closed. Especially in summer, an air-permeable insect screen can be very practical.

When should the bars be removed?

Basically, it is time to remove the bars when your child starts to climb and tries to climb over the bars. Such undertakings are very dangerous for your child, as he or she can inflict considerable injuries if he or she falls.

It is generally assumed that children between 1.5 and 3 years of age move to a cot without bars.

To ensure that your child still feels safe and that you don't have to worry about him or her falling out of the bed when you turn around, there is a fall protection system. This consists of a slightly raised slat that can be attached to the bed base. The child can then no longer fall out.

Nevertheless, the slat is so low that it is possible to get out of the bed and walk on it without climbing. You can also cover the gap between the mattress and the wall with a bed sausage or bed snake. This prevents your child from slipping between the wall and the mattress and makes him or her feel as safe as with the soft bed surround in the cot.

What does a cot cost?

There is an almost endless choice of different cots. There are also combination packages that include more than just the cot and a matching slatted frame, as well as cots that can be converted into a junior bed. Depending on your preferences, the prices vary accordingly. A solid cot starts at £50 and goes up to £400.

Cheap Expensive
from £ 50 up to £ 400

Decision: What types of cots are there and which is the right one for you?

There are two types of cots to choose from, the rectangular cot and the round cot. Depending on which model suits you better, you can choose one or the other.

  • rectangular cot
  • round cot

What are the characteristics of a rectangular cot and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

A rectangular cot is the absolute classic. This bed can grow with your child without the need to buy additional parts. Depending on whether you choose a combination package or not, a mattress and possibly a bed surround are included in addition to the slatted frame. When your baby gets older and starts to crawl and climb, you can lower the slatted frame so that your child cannot fall out.

Later on, you can remove the bars from most models and reduce the size of the head and foot sections. This way your child can sleep in the bed that has been converted into a junior bed until the age of 7. A rectangular cot with a size of 60cmx120cm or 70cmx140cm is a bit big for the little newborn at first.

However, with a cosy bed surround, a small canopy or a nest, it can be transformed into a comfortable baby bed in no time at all and still offers your child enough security. In addition, with a larger bed you can be sure that your child won't get too hot because the air can circulate better. In addition, the cot might look a bit bulky in the small children's room. For this reason, it is usually placed against the wall.

Advantages
  • Good air circulation
  • Stable
  • Can be converted into a junior bed depending on the model
  • Combination packages available
  • A true classic
Disadvantages
  • A little big for the baby at first
  • May be bulky in small rooms

The rectangular cot offers a practical option for a baby cot. Thanks to its classic rectangular shape, it can be perfectly converted into a junior bed later on, depending on the model, and integrated into the nursery. Because the child sleeps in this bed from the very beginning, it is particularly familiar to him or her.

What distinguishes a round cot bed and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

A perfectly round thing! Unlike the classic rectangular cot, the round cot is similar in design to a bassinet or baby cradle. Due to its round shape, it is much more compact than the rectangular cot and can therefore also be placed in the middle of the room. A real eye-catcher!

This cot is also usually height-adjustable and can grow with the baby. For the baby, only the headboards are screwed together at the beginning. This results in a circular lying surface that provides a feeling of security. When the baby grows and starts to kick more, a straight middle section can be added.

The cot is now oval. The disadvantage of this model is, however, that the round slatted frame and the round mattress must be replaced by an oval one. Therefore, when buying, you should make sure that the additionally required parts are included. Later on, most models can be converted into a junior bed, just like the rectangular model. However, the oval shape and the high bars at the head and foot end remain.

Advantages
  • A real eye-catcher
  • Stable
  • More compact due to round shape
  • Can be set up in the bedroom initially
  • Can be converted into a junior bed depending on the model
Disadvantages
  • A different mattress is needed for the conversion
  • Head and foot ends still have bars after conversion
  • Oval shape remains
  • Lying surface somewhat smaller than in the rectangular bed

The round cot is a welcome change in the nursery. Because of its more compact shape, it does not look so bulky and can even find a place in the bedroom to begin with. For example, instead of a side bed. Later, depending on the model, it can grow with the child. However, an oval mattress must be used for this. When buying, you should make sure that the package is complete.

Buying criteria: You can compare and evaluate cots based on these factors

In the following, we will show you which features you can use to decide between the possible cots. The criteria you can use to compare the cots are as follows:

  • Certification
  • Height-adjustable lying surface
  • Spacing of the crib rails
  • Convertible to cot
  • Sturdy design
  • Removable cot bars

Certification

There is an almost infinite choice of cots. From round to oval to rectangular, with or without a canopy, in different colours, in different designs. To keep an overview, simply make sure when buying your cot that it has a DIN or TÜV mark or a GS certificate for tested safety. That way you are on the safe side.

The TÜV seal means that the paints and varnishes used are made of natural substances and do not pose a risk to the child's health. After all, there will come a time when your child will put everything in its mouth. The GS seal stands for the tested safety of the articles. If the cot has a GS seal, then it fulfils the legally required safety. You will also see this symbol on some children's toys.

Height-adjustable lying surface

When buying a cot, you should make sure that the slatted frame in the cot is height-adjustable. This way, you can raise your newborn's lying surface so that you don't have to bend all the way down to get him or her out of the cot.

A large cot can accompany your child until the age of 7. (Image source: pexels.com / pixabay)

Of course, the same applies to putting your child in it. The probability that your baby, who has just fallen asleep in your arms, will not wake up when you lie down is higher if you don't have to bend down so far. If your child is a toddler and starts to crawl and climb, you should lower the slatted frame so that it cannot fall out.

Ideally, the height of the cot should be adjustable to 3 positions.

Most babies start to pull themselves up on objects from the 9th month. This is the time when the slatted frame should be lowered one step. When your baby starts to stand up properly, you should put the slatted base on the lowest step.

Distance between the bars

When buying your cot, make sure that the distance between the bars is 4.5 to 7.5 cm. If the bars are too close together, the air circulation will be impaired. This can lead to your baby overheating and to CO2 rebreathing, which is also life-threatening. If the bars are more than 7.5 cm apart, there is a risk that your child will try to stick its head through the bars and get stuck.

Convertible to a junior bed

Most cots have the great advantage that they grow with your child. For example, you can remove the crib walls and reduce the size of the head and foot sections. In this way, you can easily create a junior bed that can accompany your child up to the age of 7.

This saves you having to buy beds in intermediate sizes, which your child will then outgrow very quickly. In addition, your child knows this bed from the beginning. This familiarity can help him to spend the nights alone in his bed more easily.

Sturdy design

Because of the advantage that you can later convert the cot into a junior bed, you should make sure that it is stable. If possible, the cot will accompany your child for up to 6 years. Even after this time, the bed can be passed on to siblings or other children in the family. Some of the round cots can even be turned into a small sitting area with a table for the nursery.

Removable crib rails

Some cots also have two to four removable bars. This allows your toddler to get out of the cot safely without having to remove the cot sides completely. The bars lock firmly into place so that your child cannot remove them independently.

So if you want to put your child in the cot for a nap without giving them the option of getting up on their own, you can simply hook the bars back in. Especially if your child needs to get clean, the removable bars can be a great way to allow them to go to the potty independently at night.

Facts worth knowing about the cot

How do I get my child used to the cot?

One of the biggest challenges for any parent is getting their child used to their own cot. In the following, you can get a few tips that you should consider before your child goes to sleep.

  1. Establish a strict daily evening routine
  2. No more romping before bedtime
  3. Read a good night story
  4. Satisfy the child's need for safety (e.g. with a night light)
  5. Shared cuddle sessions in the cot
  6. Training, training, training

By the way, it also helps the child if it feels particularly comfortable in its bed linen and enjoys the motifs. Special children's bed linen can be a great help here.

Image source: pixabay.com / congerdesign

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