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When you think of a newborn baby, you’ll usually picture them all snuggled up tightly in a cosy blanket, right? If you’re on the lookout for the best baby swaddle or receiving blanket then you’ll be pleased to know that we’ve done all the hard work for you.
In this article we take a look at 13 organic options to see which is the best and in addition to that we also explain how to swaddle your baby – including some of the dos and don’ts – as well as giving you our top tips on how to find a great quality and gorgeous baby swaddling blanket that you and your little one will love.
So whether you’re looking for the softest or the largest or the most versatile swaddling blanket, for your baby or perhaps as a gift for a baby shower, we’ve got you covered.
Before we get into the reviews, let’s first learn a little bit about the ancient art of swaddling and why so many parents swear by it…
- What is a baby swaddle blanket?
- Is a baby swaddle necessary?
- How do you swaddle a baby?
- What baby should wear under swaddle
- Can you swaddle baby too tightly?
- Until what age should you swaddle your baby?
- What to look for in a swaddling blanket
- The Reviews: Which is the best baby swaddle?
- Premium Organic Cotton Baby Swaddle Blankets
- Muslin Swaddle Blankets Unisex by Green Wood
- Cotton Organics Muslin Swaddle Blankets
- Oliver & Rain Baby Swaddle Sampler
- Organic Cotton Baby Swaddles by DINKY D
- 100% Organic Cotton Swaddle Blankets from My Little North Star
- Sophie & Bird 100% Organic Cotton Baby Muslin Swaddle Blankets
- Organic Muslin Swaddle Blanket by Margaux & May
- Bunny Palm Organic Bamboo Muslin Swaddle Blankets
- Bōldernest Organic Cotton Muslin Swaddle Blanket Set
- OSHLO Products Organic Bamboo Muslin Swaddle Blankets
- WeeSprout Organic Cotton Muslin
- VK Organic Cotton Muslin Swaddle Blankets
- The verdict: best baby swaddle
What is a baby swaddle blanket?
A swaddle is a large but thin blanket or sheet that wraps your baby snuggly to help them feel safe and secure. Swaddling has been used by mothers for centuries as it’s thought to imitate the snug sensation that babies experience in the womb. This helps them to feel relaxed and settled and therefore sleep better.
Most baby swaddle blankets are made from cotton muslin because it’s lightweight and breathable, while still being durable. This means that your baby can be wrapped well without the risk of overheating.
The other benefit of muslin is that it gradually gets softer and softer the more you use and wash it, making it a perfect fabric to put against a baby’s delicate skin.
While cotton has always been the popular choice for swaddling cloths, there are now many organic bamboo options on the market, with some rivalling their cotton counterparts for softness and durability. We’ve got some great bamboo options in our list of reviews below.
Is a baby swaddle necessary?
Whether or not a baby swaddle is necessary really depends on your baby and your own preferences. Parents that use a swaddling technique for their babies swear that it helps their little ones to settle and to sleep better and longer than when they’re not swaddled.
This is due in part to the feeling of security which I mentioned above but it also stops the baby from experiencing the startle reflex (Moro Reflex) when they’re sleeping on their back. (1)
You may have observed this already if you’ve been having trouble settling your baby and haven’t tried swaddling yet. They will jerk their arms or legs suddenly and it frightens them and wakes them up. A swaddled baby can’t do this and so sleeps soundly until they wake up naturally.
In addition, swaddling a baby keeps them from scratching themselves in the face and is a lot easier than trying to keep baby mittens on them.
In saying all that, some babies are very mobile and cannot stand the feeling of being restricted now that they are free from the womb! Use your judgement and knowledge of your baby’s personality to best gauge if swaddling would benefit you both.
How do you swaddle a baby?
There are three main techniques you can use for swaddling depending on the age of your baby and their needs. These are:
- The Diamond Swaddle
- The Square or Quick Swaddle
- The Sleep Sack Swaddle (this involves the use of a special sleep sack that additional parts that wrap around your baby’s top half)
There’s also a technique you can use to swaddle your baby with their arms free, which might be a good option if your baby isn’t overly keen on swaddling but still needs something to help them sleep better.
Here’s another great video from a nurse that demonstrates three easy swaddling techniques for your newborn baby:
What baby should wear under swaddle
This depends on which season you’re in and the temperature inside your house. If it’s summer and the temperatures are very high, it’s advised NOT to swaddle your baby as they could overheat.
If it gets cooler in the summer evenings, you could dress them in a short sleeved onesie. For winter months, you can put them in a full body pajama bodysuit. (2)
Can you swaddle baby too tightly?
Yes, you certainly can. You want the swaddle to be just firm enough so that it keeps their arms inside but not tight enough that it squeezes their chest and disrupts their ability to breathe freely.
Until what age should you swaddle your baby?
Swaddling is really a technique just for newborns. You should stop swaddling your baby as soon as they show signs that they are beginning to learn how to roll – this would be around 2-3 months.
If a baby rolls over with their arms inside the swaddle, they could suffocate.
If you’ve used swaddling as a sleep aid it can be difficult to move your baby on from swaddling. To transition them, try gradually changing the way you swaddle them, allowing them to sleep with their arms outside the swaddle, until they are used to the sensation of sleeping without it.
What to look for in a swaddling blanket
Not all swaddling blankets are up to the job. Here are some key things to consider when selecting the right one for your baby:
Swaddling blankets come in a range of sizes; however, we suggest going for the larger ones as this will ensure you can definitely swaddle your baby, plus it makes them useful for other purposes such as nursing covers, stroller covers, changing table covers and baby carriers.
As previously mentioned, most swaddling blankets are made from cotton but there are some on the market that are made from bamboo and other sustainable materials.
Just make sure that you select a blanket that is made from an organic product. Look out for the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) certification which proves the product is made from 100% organic material. We let you know which ones are certified in our reviews below.
Some of the swaddling blankets come pre-washed. This usually ensures they are free from any dye residues and means they are already really soft.
Usually, the high quality materials are the softest and they become even softer after frequent use and washing. As with organic certification, we let you know which ones are the softest blankets in our reviews.
The Reviews: Which is the best baby swaddle?
Now you know more about swaddling and what to look for in a swaddling blanket, let’s check out what’s on offer.
First up on our list are these organic muslin swaddle blankets from Baby Madeleine…
Premium Organic Cotton Baby Swaddle Blankets
These organic swaddle blankets come in a set of three and make a perfect gift for expecting parents.
The muslin cloth is just the right thickness and big enough to wrap around the baby no matter which swaddling style you choose.
The great thing about muslin is that it’s breathable and light so you can definitely use these in both the warm and cold months. Plus, they double up as burping cloths, nursing covers and light blankets, meaning more bang for your buck.
Some users have found that the material is not as soft as they would have expected for organic cotton, but this may be due to the pattern.
- Great colors and pattern
- Versatile material also works well as burping cloths, nursing covers and light blankets
- Breathable and right thickness for a swaddle
- Great size
- Wash well
- Material is not that soft, a little scratchy
- Smells a bit like chemicals when you first get them, so wash prior to use
Muslin Swaddle Blankets Unisex by Green Wood
You’ll love the gorgeous animal patterns on these newborn swaddle blankets from Green Wood.
In contrast to the Baby Madeleine brand, these muslin swaddles are really soft, even with the printed patterns. So if your baby has particularly sensitive skin this is a great 100% organic and gentle option to go for.
We love that they come pre-washed so there are no smells when you open the packaging and you can use them straight away on your little one.
The thickness of the material is just right; light enough to be breathable but they still retain enough heat to keep your baby warm overnight.
- Come pre-washed
- Beautiful colors and patterns
- Material is lovely and soft
- Colors don’t fade after regular washing
- You might have to hand wash these to avoid lint
Cotton Organics Muslin Swaddle Blankets
The organic muslin on these natural swaddle blankets from Cotton Organics is so soft that it feels like silk.
Sometimes after machine washing, muslin has the tendency to pucker and crinkle quite a lot. The Cotton Organics brand is one of the best on the market for staying relatively crinkle-free even if you don’t exactly follow the care instructions to the letter.
The plain white color means it goes with everything and the blankets are quite large, so again, they also work well as light blankets when not swaddling, nursing covers and stroller covers.
If you have a newborn, you may be able to double over the swaddle to make it thicker and warmer in the winter. For larger babies this may be a little too thin.
- Extra soft and hypoallergenic
- Washes really well without puckering
- Size is huge so makes it great for other uses too
- Single layer gauze makes it less warm in winter
Oliver & Rain Baby Swaddle Sampler
These swaddle blankets for newborns from Oliver & Rain come in a range of gorgeous colors and patterns.
They are really big swaddles, which means you can use them for several purposes – even for baby carrying!
They’re machine washable which is also handy for busy moms. But if you’re looking for a really soft swaddle option then these aren’t the best baby swaddle blankets.
Despite being organic, they do seem to have a very strong smell when you first receive them. If you do decide to purchase these, make sure to wash them before you use them.
- Just enough stretch in the material to produce a good swaddle
- Colors are lovely
- Recycled packaging
- Oversized for multiple uses
- Not very soft
- Extremely strong smell when you first get them
- Lose their shape after washing
- Material is very thin
Organic Cotton Baby Swaddles by DINKY D
These DINKY D swaddles come in a lovely little set of two and would make a great gift as part of baby shower parcel.
They have gorgeous colors and patterns that are suitable for either girls or boys and they are just the right size for swaddling.
When you first take the blankets out of the packaging, the material does feel a bit stiff and scratchy; however, once you’ve washed them once, the fabric becomes super soft and perfect for using against baby’s delicate skin.
Once again, these are a great multi-use product and can be used as nursing covers and light blankets for the summer.
- Lovely gender neutral prints
- Fabric is lovely and soft once washed
- Perfect size for swaddling
- Nothing at all!
100% Organic Cotton Swaddle Blankets from My Little North Star
The My Little North Star swaddle blankets are really impressive quality. Not only is the fabric really soft (even when you first take them out of the box) it’s also just the right thickness.
And because the softness of the fabric is such an important factor when selecting materials that will be rubbing up against your baby’s skin, it’s great to know that these swaddling blankets become softer and softer after every wash.
If you’re still unsure on the correct way to swaddle your little one, don’t fret! The box that these swaddle blankets come in even gives you instructions on how to do it – very handy!
- Large size makes them perfect for several uses
- Perfect thickness
- Lovely and soft
- Beautiful gender neutral designs
- Nothing at all!
Sophie & Bird 100% Organic Cotton Baby Muslin Swaddle Blankets
The quality of the fabric of these Sophie & Bird swaddle blankets is really high and you’ll love the gorgeous array of prints.
They’re bigger than your usual sized swaddle, which allows you to use them in various ways – if you double them over they make great lightweight blankets.
They are 100% GOTS certified organic cotton and we love that the company actively acknowledges that it cares about the people who have been involved in the making of their product and the environment that they live and work in.
Sophie & Bird also use their business as a force for good by planting a tree with every single purchase you make from their range of products.
When you buy these swaddles you’ll also receive a free ebook: “5 Habits that Help us Conquer the Baby Bedtime Blues”.
- Global Organic Textile Standard certified
- Buy an item from Sophie & Bird and they plant a tree
- Money back guarantee if you’re not happy
- Company cares about workers in the entire product supply chain
- Gorgeous prints
- Free ebook included
- Nothing at all!
Organic Muslin Swaddle Blanket by Margaux & May
What first stands out when you see these Margaux & May swaddle blankets are the delightful original prints. They’re vibrant and bold and maintain their color even with multiple washes. We love the ‘Dandelion and Meadow’ pattern.
The fabric has been constructed with an open weave, which means that it’s lightweight and breathable and will prevent your little one from overheating while still staying snuggly.
However, these swaddle blankets aren’t as soft as other brands on the market. They can feel a little rough when you first take them out of the box. They do become softer after washing but the material is quite thin and doesn’t hold up like brands that have a thicker fabric.
- Beautiful designs and colors
- Material is quite thin
- Not as soft as other options on the market
- Not GOTS certified
Bunny Palm Organic Bamboo Muslin Swaddle Blankets
If you’re looking for a sustainably-sourced material, then these Bunny Palm swaddle blankets that use bamboo instead of cotton might be right for you.
They have cute gender neutral patterns that would coordinate well with any nursery theme, plus this set of three comes with a free hat.
There are a few downsides to these swaddling blankets; the first is that there is a strong chemical odor when you first take them out of the box, despite the fact that they’re supposed to be pre-washed and ready to use.
There’s also nothing on the box or blanket labels to suggest that they’re GOTS organic despite being advertised as such.
Other users have also noted that their babies are able to easily kick their way out of the swaddle due to the stretchiness of the fabric.
- Made from a sustainable material – bamboo
- Comes with an additional free gift
- Strong chemical odor when you first open the packaging
- Nothing on the box to say it’s GOTS certified
- Not very soft compared with other brands
- Doesn’t hold together well for swaddling
Bōldernest Organic Cotton Muslin Swaddle Blanket Set
These Bōldernest swaddles come in a set of three and the presentation of the packaging makes them an attractive gift option for baby showers.
These blankets are super soft and retain their shape and original muslin texture even after several washes.
They are certified organic and don’t have any chemical smells or strong odors when you open the packaging… and speaking of packaging, there are really useful “How to Swaddle Baby” graphics on the outside so you’ll know exactly what to do.
Once again, we love the gender neutral patterns and the quality of these swaddles means they’ll last for years.
- Super soft
- Wash well
- Comes with “How to swaddle baby” graphics on packaging
- Makes a great baby shower gift
- Nothing at all!
OSHLO Products Organic Bamboo Muslin Swaddle Blankets Vegan animal lovers will adore the gorgeous animal prints on these organic bamboo swaddle blankets from OSHLO Products. They come in a set of four – two of which carry the designs and two are plain. The material is comfortable and lightweight, making it a perfect swaddle or if doubled over, a light blanket for warm summer nights. The organic bamboo muslin is also super soft and your baby will love cuddling these blankets up to their face when they’re older. The only downside is that they have to be air dried instead of machine dried, but as they are so lightweight, they don’t take long to dry and will be ready for their next use in no time!
Lovely soft material Beautiful designs (2 of each) Great size gives versatility of use
Can’t put them in the dryer – have to be air dried
WeeSprout Organic Cotton Muslin
WeeSprout claim that their blankets are 20% larger than most other swaddle blankets available, making them great for serving as a nursing cover, play mat, burp cloth, security blanket, stroller cover, tummy-time blanket, changing table cover, and a car seat cover!
They are GOTS certified and the company claims that their cotton is grown in a socially and environmentally friendly way. The finished muslin fabric is processed without any harmful chemicals and printed with only all-natural dyes.
The use of natural dyes might be the reason why some users have unfortunately discovered that the gorgeous little duck and frog patterns disappear after only one wash.
Another issue with these blankets is that they feature two large tags – a brand tag and washing instructions – that make them slightly unattractive and uncomfortable for babies if you left them on. If you go with this brand, we suggest you cut off the tags before you use them.
- GOTS certified
- Large size makes them great for other uses as well
- Money back guarantee
- Two large tags on each swaddle blanket
- Prints may disappear after as little as one wash
- Not that soft
VK Organic Cotton Muslin Swaddle Blankets
Last but not least, we have these organic cotton swaddle blankets from Virginia Kate.
The softness of these blankets is comparable to bedsheets, so they’re not the softest muslin swaddles on our list of reviews. This stiffness makes it difficult to get enough stretch to swaddle your baby effectively.
Unfortunately, like other blankets on our list, these swaddles tend to have a very strong chemical smell when you first receive them, despite the fact that they are organic.
They are a large size and the neutral gray colors mean they also make a good, discreet nursing cover when you’re out and about.
If you were to purchase these, we’d recommend washing them well before using them. They hold their shape well in the wash and should become a little softer.
- Nice gender neutral colors that don’t fade after washing
- Fabric isn’t that soft and has not enough stretch to swaddle
- Strong chemical smell
The verdict: best baby swaddle
Although there were a few swaddle blanket brands on our list that we couldn’t find fault with, our top pick from the bunch has to be the Sophie & Bird 100% Organic Cotton Baby Muslin Swaddle Blankets.
Not only are these blankets certified organic, but we also love the company’s dedication to social corporate responsibility. Tree-planting is a great way to give back to future generations and to help the environment.
They’re everything you could want in a swaddle blanket; they’re luxuriously soft, the perfect size and thickness of material and suitable for multiple uses.
Making them even more perfect still is that with their range of beautiful patterns to choose from, they look gorgeous too! We also love the fact that they’ve included a free ebook for buyers giving tips on baby sleep – a huge topic of worry for parents! No doubt, details on effective swaddling for better sleep will be included.
A close runner up are the 100% organic cotton swaddle blankets from My Little North star. We love that these are super soft straight out of the packet, no need to wash them to soften them before using on baby.
They also come in lovely gender neutral designs making them an ideal choice for parents not wanting to reveal the baby’s sex before birth, or if you just prefer designs and colors that would work for both sexes.
So there you have our top picks and everything you need to know about how to choose the best swaddling blankets for your newborn.
Can you recommend any of the brands on our list? Let us know which one is your favorite in the comments below.
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About The Author:
Emma is a blogger, life-coach and qualified PR professional and journalist, who also happens to be a passionate vegan, animal and nature lover.
She lives in a small village in France with her husband, daughter and their rescue animals at the Barefoot Vegan Farm and Animal Sanctuary. As a writer, Emma’s work has been featured in other popular well-being and spiritual websites such as Elephant Journal, IVORY magazine, and she’s part of the Huffington Post’s team of regular bloggers. Her writing was also included in the Tiny Buddha book 365 Love Challenges from Tiny Buddha, released in 2015 by HarperCollins.
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- Jamie Eske | What to know about the Moro reflex? | https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/327370
- Admin | How To Dress Your Baby At Night | https://www.gentletouchsleeptime.com/how-to-dress-your-baby-at-night-2/