Baby Swing vs Rocker vs Bouncer – how to find the right one

Only have a couple of minutes before it’s time to pick up the little one? In a rush? Or are you savoring every precious adult moment you can while you read this article? The top product recommendation between a baby swing vs rocker vs bouncer is a rocker. Want to know why? I guess you’re going to have to keep reading after all.

Being a parent comes with a neverending list of responsibilities from picking your parenting style to deciding whether a baby swing, a rocker or a  bouncer will be more appropriate for your baby. Sometimes it feels like parenting is just making one decision after another! Today, I’ll be making one decision a whole lot easier by helping you pick the perfect parenting gear to meet your needs.

Which is Best for Baby?

Deciding between these three can be a tough task if you aren’t sure where to start the decision-making process. I’ve put together this short guide to help steer you in the right direction.

A Bit About These Three Options

The first step to making the right choice is properly understanding what these terms mean. All three serve the same purpose: soothing baby and giving mom and dad’s tired arms a break by mimicking the rocking movement. But that’s pretty much all these three devices have in common.

Much like a traditional rocking chair, a rocker rocks back and forth independently in order to soothe a little one. A rocker can typically be used from birth until between six to nine months of age.

A bouncer is essentially an inclined seat that vibrates mechanically or is bounced manually. Bouncers are also ideal for usage from birth to around six months of age.

Baby swings are essentially reclined seats that either vibrate or gently bounce up and down. If you’ve visited my site before you’ll know that I’ve discussed baby swings in detail before, so excuse me for skimming over that definition here.

Benefits

A big part of picking the right gear comes down to the benefits it provides parents with when compared to other kinds of products. Each type of product we’re discussing today has its own set of benefits. Let’s take a look at them.

Baby Swing Benefits

  • Very sturdy and not prone to falling over
  • Typically have a range of settings which mean there’s bound to be at least one setting your baby will enjoy
  • Can soothe and lull your baby but also stimulate and entertain
  • Can be used from birth onwards

Baby Rocker Benefits

  • Can soothe and lull your baby but also stimulate and entertain
  • Typically smaller and more compact than other options
  • Can be used from birth onwards
  • Thought to help develop motor and sensory skills

Baby Bouncer Benefits

  • Doubles as a baby exerciser
  • Normally lightweight and easy to transport
  • Designed to promote healthy spine growth
  • Can help promote healthy sleep patterns
  • Can soothe and lull your baby but also stimulate and entertain
  • Can be used from birth onwards

How to Choose the Right Type for Your Baby

Now that you know a little bit more about each product and are aware of their unique pros and cons you should have a clearer idea of which one to pick. Before I introduce you to some of the very best products on the market, consider the following.

  • Do you prefer battery-operated gear or plug-in products? Battery-operated products are great because you don’t consume any electricity while using them and they’re much more portable. On the downside, you’ll constantly be recharging batteries or purchasing new ones.
  • How much space do you have available? Rockers and bouncers are typically much more compact than swings are.
  • What do you want it for? Consider whether the primary purpose for purchasing it will be to help your baby get to sleep or to stimulate him or her and keep them entertained. Purchase one that is designed to accomplish the purpose you have in mind.
  • How much are you willing to spend? Generally speaking: swings are the most expensive of the three options with rockers coming in a close second and bouncers clocking in as the cheapest option. Of course, brand often determines price more than type but the order I just listed these products in is true for the most part.

My Top Picks

Product Reviews

BABYBJÖRN Bouncer Balance Soft 

The first product I’ll be sharing with you is the BABYBJÖRN Bouncer. Let me start by saying that if you’re a fashion-focused father you’ll love that it comes in three different design options as well as 10 different color options ranging from a mustard yellow to a sky blue. You can pick between options made from cotton, mesh or a combination of the two. This bouncer has three adjustable height positions and can be set to a transport mode which makes it incredibly portable. It is also very easy to use and clean which adds to its popularity. 

Who it’s for

It is suitable for usage on infants who weigh 7.7lbs through to 28lbs.

Why you should buy it

This product is stylish, streamlined and sturdy. Its ergonomic design makes up for what it lacks in fun prints and stimulating attachments. It is also incredibly easy to use, carry and store.

Product Info

  • Dimensions: 35.24″ x 15.35″ x 3.94″
  • Minimum user weight: 7.7lbs
  • Maximum user weight: 28lbs
  • Design options: Eight unisex, one boy and one girl option

Pros

  • Machine washable
  • Various design options to pick from
  • Longlasting
  • Simple, streamlined design
  • Collapsible design for easy carrying and storage

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Big warning tag right on the front of the bouncer
  • Issues with fakes products circulating
  • Inferior customer service
  • Doesn’t have interactive elements

 

Fisher-Price Infant-to-Toddler Rocker

Ready to rock out? That’s exactly what the rocker has in store. It has two recline positions and a kickstand option for stationary seating. It has a removable toy bar that provides both visual and audio stimulation as well as a vibration option to help soothe fussy babies. In addition to the pink option as pictured below, the Fisher-Price Infant-to-Toddler Rocker is available in five different design options: teal, kernel pop, geo triangles, geo diamonds and floral confetti.

Who it’s for

This product has been designed to keep up with a growing baby and as such is ideal for newborns through to toddlers who weigh up to 40lbs.

Why you should buy it

Its convertible nature makes this a financially sound investment. You don’t need to worry about needing to purchase a bigger model once your infant starts growing. It’s a simple product that has been built to last.

Product Info

  • Dimensions: 19.69″ x 23.62″ x 16.54″
  • Minimum user weight: None
  • Maximum user weight: 40lbs
  • Design options: Four unisex and two girl options

Pros

  • Machine washable
  • Various design options to pick from
  • Incredible customer service

Cons

  • Short battery life (20 hours)
  • Legs could be much more stable
  • Many feel it is more suited towards toddlers and not infants

 

Fisher-Price Sweet Snugapuppy Dreams Cradle ‘n Swing

Finally, we have this baby swing by Fisher-Price. It has a dual motion swing functionality that allows for both head to toe swinging as well as side to side. You can pick between six different swing speeds and two recline positions – all while your little one is soothed by 16 different songs and sounds. It is also machine washable and comes with a mobile that visually and audibly stimulates your growing bundle of joy. Plus, if the cute puppy design isn’t doing it for you there are also grayscale monkey and bunny designs that are nothing short of adorable.

Who it’s for

This product is designed for usage on babies aged newborn to nine months. Not to mention tired parents who need to rest their arms for just a few moments!

Why you should buy it

This product ticks all of the necessary boxes. It’s supportive, stimulating, soothing and provides parents with many levels of adjustment.

Product Info

  • Dimensions: 35.04″ x 44.02″ x 37.01″
  • Minimum user weight: None
  • Maximum user weight: 25lbs
  • Design options: Three unisex options

Pros

  • Dual motion swing functionality
  • Machine washable
  • Option to plug it in to save on batteries
  • Various design options to pick from
  • Fantastic customer service

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Difficult to setup
  • Motor makes a LOT of noise (If you don’t believe me, Google “Fisher Price swing noise” and see for yourself!)

 

FAQ

Are baby swings good for babies?

When used appropriately, absolutely. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has a fantastic baby swing safety guide that all parents should familiarize themselves with.

What age can a baby go in a bouncer?

Babies can be placed in a bouncer from birth. However, it must be noted that they’ll get the most enjoyment out of the device when they are aged between three and six months of age.

What are the best baby rocker brands?

The best baby rockers on the market include those manufactured by Fisher-Price, Evenflo, Graco, 4moms and a handful of other brands.

Conclusion

So, which is the better product? Personally, I’m quick to recommend all three options depending on the age of your baby. For bigger babies and small toddlers, you cannot go wrong with the Fisher-Price Infant-to-Toddler Rocker and I like the fact that you don’t need to upgrade products as your child grows. That’s not to say that the other two products are inferior by any means, it’s just that the convertible nature of the Fisher-Price rocker means it can be used longer – which means you’ll get more bang for your buck.

Last update on 2020-10-23 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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