Are you looking for a way to maximize the investment you’re making in your child’s crib? Cribs can be one of the most expensive baby items expecting parents will buy. Depending on the style, material, and size, a new crib can be well over $500.
While traditional cribs can last for several years, your child might have other plans. Some of our more curious offspring (my niece for example) start to climb their way to freedom well before three years old (1).
All of a sudden, the crib you thought would last four years is barely making it to two and a half.
Luckily, there’s a solution. Convertible cribs. These cribs adapt to your child’s development and can be converted into toddler beds, day beds, and even full-sized beds in some cases.
Convertible Cribs: An Introduction
Convertible cribs come in all shapes and sizes. The variation and flexibility they offer are part of their appeal. However, this also means you have to pay attention to more details than you might with a traditional crib.
Some convertible cribs come with all the parts and pieces necessary for conversion. Other parts may be sold separately. Before you choose a convertible crib, it’s a good idea to learn what all the options are so you can think about what will work best for your family.
This is the simplest convertible option on the market. In some cases, a two-in-one convertible crib will go from a crib to a daybed. In other cases, it means the bed will go from a crib to a toddler bed with a guard rail.
A three-in-one conversion kit is the first step that may provide a full-sized bed option. In some cases, these cribs will allow you to go from a crib to a toddler bed with a guard rail, to a daybed. Other three-in-one options will go from a crib to a daybed to a full-sized bed.
A four-in-one conversion kit will give you all of the options we’ve discussed thus far. It will follow your child from the traditional crib stage, through the toddler years and into the teenager days with a full-sized bed.
The good thing about this kit is the option for a toddler guard rail. This will help your child get used to a “big-kid” bed, and you can take it off when they’re ready.
These days, we’re also starting to see five-in-one convertible cribs. While they may not truly be five-in-one, they do offer one more option on the full-sized bed.
With these cribs, you can use both of the long sides of the former crib for a headboard and a tailboard. This allows for a more sophisticated, full-sized look.
Advantages and Disadvantages
Convertible cribs have a lot to offer. They can save you money, time, and the logistics of buying and selling beds for your child.
Drop-side cribs have been illegal in the United States since 2011, which can be hard on parents with growing toddlers (2), particularly those with back problems.
Using a convertible crib allows your toddler to stay in the sleep environment they love but still transition to a bed without rails.
Convertible cribs do have their downsides, though. If you’re going to use this bed for the long haul, it means picking a style that you will be happy with for years. Trends change and so do kids, so it can be difficult to choose something you’ll truly like for so long.
The Best Convertible Cribs of 2020
As we discussed above, there are a ton of different convertible cribs on the market. How will you know which is right for your child? The first step is to ask yourself how long you think you’ll stick to the same bed.
Once you have an idea of what you need, check out our convertible crib review below. It will help you sort out the differences between the various options and help you choose something you and your child will enjoy!
1. Babyletto 3-in-1 Convertible
Some kids move a lot in their sleep. For their parents, the idea of moving straight from a crib to a daybed can be nerve-wracking. A three-in-one convertible crib can provide that extra layer of safety with a toddler guard rail.
This crib has a trendy mid-century design. It transitions from a crib to a toddler bed with a guard rail, to a daybed. Available in eight different colors, parents have lots of options to choose from.
The bed is also compliant with the GreenGuard Gold standard. This certification ensures that the materials used have reduced levels of chemical emissions to protect your child.
At 56 pounds, the crib is on the heavier side and doesn’t have wheels. This is important to note for any parents that plan on moving the crib from room to room.
- GreenGuard Gold certified.
- Trendy design.
- Many color options.
- Heavier than other cribs.
2. Davinci Jenny Lind Convertible
There’s no such thing as the perfect crib. Every parent knows it’s a compromise between budget, needs, and wants. Still, it’s possible to find a convertible crib that ticks all the boxes while still remaining pretty affordable.
This crib converts to a toddler bed and a daybed. It doesn’t have a toddler guard rail included, but you can purchase this separately. The bed does have four mattress positions to move baby lower as they get older and bigger.
This product is also GreenGuard Gold certified. Rest assured the crib has fewer chemical emissions and reduces your child’s exposure to potentially harmful compounds.
This convertible crib is relatively lightweight at 37 pounds, and it also comes with wheels to make moving it around the room or house much easier.
- GreenGuard Gold certified.
- Four mattress heights.
- Has wheels. (Always remember to lock the wheels)
- Many color options.
- Toddler guard rail must be purchased separately.
3. Dream on Me Convertible Mini
Many parents choose to use a mini crib during their baby’s first months. Because mini cribs will usually only safely hold a child for approximately 18 months to two years, a second, traditional crib usually needs to be purchased later. Finding a convertible mini crib allows you to keep using it, even when your child has outgrown the mini part.
This crib converts to a daybed and then to a twin-sized bed, with both headboard and tailboard options. However, it does not include the railings and bed frame.
It has three mattress positions to make it easier for your toddler to get in and out. It also comes in seven different colors to match your design preferences.
When you buy the crib, it comes with a free changing pad, which is a nice touch. There’s also an option to buy the crib with a mattress that’s guaranteed to fit.
- Three mattress positions.
- Seven color options.
- Free changing pad.
- Some accessories must be purchased separately.
4. Union 3-in-1 Convertible
For parents that don’t want to commit to something for the long haul, a simple crib can still provide a longer life for your crib investment. Daybeds are great for potty-training toddlers, and they also make super cute hallway decor later on.
This crib transitions from a traditional crib to a daybed. It comes with fixed side rails. Also, because it’s low to the ground, it can still be a great option for kids learning to leave the crib and sleep without railing.
The crib comes in a classic style, which will make it easier to use in other parts of the house after your baby is done with it.
- Classic design.
- Fixed side rails.
- Many moms noted how easy it was to assemble.
- Conversion kit is sold separately.
5. Storkcraft Portofino Convertible Crib
For parents who know what they want, a four-in-one crib can mean that you only buy your child one bed for their entire lifetime at home. This saves you money, but can also be a special memento for your child.
This crib converts from a traditional crib to a toddler bed, to a daybed and, finally, to a full-sized bed. It also comes with an attached changing table and shelves — awesome for midnight diaper changes.
It doesn’t have a toddler guard rail, but there are several mattress heights. For parents who don’t need the railing, but still want their child to be closer to the ground as they get used to sleeping without a crib, this will work for you. For others, the guard rail can be bought separately.
Once the bed is converted into a full-sized bed, you can use the changing station as a nightstand. The metal bed frame for the full-sized bed is sold separately, which is very common.
- Three color options.
- Changing table attachment.
- Various mattress heights.
- Some parents noted that assembly was a bit difficult.
6. Dream on Me Convertible Crib
As your child gets older and turns into a teenager, it’s nice to add a level of sophistication to their furniture. A five-in-one option can use more of the original crib by adding a tailboard to the full-sized bed.
This crib provides the option to convert your crib into a toddler bed, a daybed, and a full-sized bed. However, the guardrail, stabilizer, and full-sized rail do need to be purchased separately.
The crib is designed to support four separate mattress positions. This makes the toddler bed much more friendly for babies learning to move to a bed, and is also easier on mom and dad’s backs.
The crib fits a standard, full-size mattress. It also comes in six different colors to match your nursery theme.
- Four separate mattress positions.
- Six different color options.
- Classic style.
- Several items must be purchased separately.
7. Graco Freeport Convertible Crib
A crib is one of the most significant investments you make when it comes to baby gear. But a lower price tag doesn’t mean you have to give up on quality. There are plenty of great, affordable options out there!
This crib offers crib, toddler bed, daybed, and full-sized bed options. It’s sold without a guard rail, but it does have three mattress positions to keep your toddler lower to the ground.
It has a simple design that will keep it in style for many years. It also comes in five different colors to ensure you get the color you need. The design simplicity also means it’s relatively lightweight for a traditional crib.
The kit doesn’t include a mattress or the full-sized bed frame. Some reviewers noted how easy assembly was and how detailed the instruction booklet was. This is always a bonus, to prevent those furniture assembling fights we all know very well.
- Very affordable.
- Classic design.
- Three mattress positions.
- Five color options.
- Some items not included and must be bought separately.
Convertible cribs can be a great way to save money, reduce consumption, and give your child a memento from their childhood. Some cribs only convert to toddler beds or day beds, while others will take your child into adulthood.
Our favorite is the Babyletto Three-in-One Convertible. It’s GreenGuard Gold certified, and the toddler conversion kit is included so you don’t have to spend time finding and ordering it separately. Whichever crib you choose, remember to never place pillows, blankets or stuffed animals in the crib with your infant because this may lead to suffocation.. Placing wedges or non-mesh crib liners in the crib can also be dangerous and may also lead to suffocation.
Have you used a convertible crib? What was your experience doing the actual converting? Was it worth it?
Share your advice and comments in the review section below. And let other moms and dads know how useful convertible cribs are!