While our purpose is to educate parents on how to go about buying the right products that are ideal for their precious ones, please note that the tips here are primarily our personal opinions and do not mean to cast allegations or insinuations of any kind against any individuals or companies. These tips can be utilized as a good starting point. You should think carefully whether the tips seem sensible, do your own exploration and use your private judgments before investing in a play mat.
There are a wide variety of baby play mats available for sale, which means you shouldn’t be ashamed of your confusion when you look for the correct one for your important one. These products pass different names but are mainly called take up mat, playmat or activity mat. Here are several good tips for selecting the right take up mat for your child:
Safety, safety & safety
What else could it be? Obviously, safeness will be the No. 1 concern atlanta divorce attorneys parent’s mind. The problem is that there happen to be a wide variety of safety standards nowadays – American, Canadian, European, Japanese, Korean, Australian, New Zealand, etc. No merchandise has ever before been developed and authorized to meet all these standards mainly due to economical and specialized reasons. And actually within a nation, there are multiple specifications to meet for every single product the majority of the times. Consider the European protection standards for example … Not many people will know it, but passing the most basic EN-71 European standards does not mean anything very much regarding the protection of the play mat since the play mat is being governed by another benchmarks within Europe! And possibly within the EN-71, there will vary parts in the benchmarks. Suppliers rarely point out these. Instead they will generalize it as ‘passing European specifications’ or ‘passing EN-71 standards’ without telling you the details or what they fail. The most severe thing is that specifications keep evolving. Even reliable suppliers use old specifications as they might have already failed the new standards. You may be confused now, but we have it to come to be our obligations and obligations to teach consumers.
To hold things simple, remember these guidelines generally: (i) avoid China manufacturer if possible, but manufactured in China is ok, (ii) go for makes from developed countries. Naturally, you can still get a China brand if you really know what you are shopping for. In general, brands from USA, Europe, Japan, Korea, etc. are considered as safe enough. Such brands would have imposed tight internal quality control process to ensure safety and quality regardless of the country of manufacture. A good example will become Apple, whose products are popular for top quality and finishing despite the fact that they are mostly manufactured in China.
Still on safety!
Don’t be surprised that people remain on safety since safe practices covers such a broad area. You don’t wish your child to get harm when lying on the take up mat.
The play mat should be thick and large enough in order that it will protect the babies even when they stumble (which is common). If possible, they should be extra padded to cushion the fall.
If zippers are being used, they should be hidden away from the babies.
If the play mat comes with toys or activity items, they should be safely positioned.
Types & materials
There are therefore many different types of play mats, but in general, we classify them mainly because fabric mat, puzzle mat, soft mat and space folder mat.
Fabric mats are those that made of clothing supplies. They consist of mattresses which everyone is familiar with. Needless to say, fabric mats are generally the safest but is generally not waterproof unless specifically treated.
Puzzle mats are commonly known as ABC or foam mats. They have huge price ranges and are usually made of foam using supplies such as Polyethylene (PE) and Ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA). Actually within the same friends and family (such as PE), the product quality and pricing of the end products can vary drastically due to plastic characteristics, chemical substance composition and manufacturing method. Some puzzle mats happen to be so lousy and seriously stink (safe?) nonetheless they are actually cheap … and they are the foam mats that induced plenty of health concerns during the past! Others manufactured from EVA happen to be of the best qualities, pass stringent safeness standards, usually do not pose any health issues and do not genuinely have any smell even though you first wide open them. Unfortunately, they aren’t cheap and cost a lot more than PE tender mats. As the word goes, not absolutely all foam mats are created equivalent! Puzzle mats usually are made of interlocking portions with alphabets, quantities, symbols or even family pets on them. One particular example may be the award winning creature tessellation foam mats which are really popular in different developed countries, however, not so much below. If you wish to go for puzzle mats, our suggestion is to use those higher quality EVA mats that will be popular in created countries such as Japan and Europe.
Soft mats are often made of PE, Polyurethane (PU), Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) as well as Silicone. PE and PU gentle mats are cheap but their colors are not as wealthy and their surfaces will be rougher so you might not want your baby to crawl on them. PE gentle mats are usually cheaper, while PU tender mats can barely be found here. Alternatively, PVC tender mats are incredibly popular in Singapore because of their colorful patterns, educational values and even surfaces. However they are expensive and will be rather major and bulky. And unidentified to many individuals, PVC products are actually bad for the surroundings and their product safeness is a major concern. And we are not even talking about phthalates! Have you ever wondered why PVC mats cannot actually penetrate lots of developed marketplaces in Europe? Click here for more details.
Silicone mats are the evolution of PVC mats. They have got all the great features of PVC mats, but minus the negative types. Silicone mats are really better, softer, safer and very environmental friendly. But they are likewise the most expensive ones. That is why you can’t find them in Singapore yet.
Space folder mats
Due to all the worries with PVC mats, a lot of PVC Korean suppliers have got started creating the so-called space folder mats, also referred to as foldable mats, folder mats, space folding mats or simply folding mats. Space folder mats are the in-factor in Korea nowadays. As the brand implies, space folder mat could be conveniently fold up. Their floors use PU textile and usually can be found in most important or pastel color collaboration. In the PU fabric will most likely come to be layers of PE foams. Some suppliers also have started with simple patterns on such space folder mats. Folder mats happen to be safer and hundred circumstances (we restrain using thousand times) extra environmental friendly than PVC mats nonetheless they lack educational ideals. The much lighter excess fat of the area folder mat is normally another reason behind its attractiveness as this helps it be so much more lightweight even if you merely have to move it in one room to the various other.
Given all the over and since we are environmentally mindful, we would suggest space folder mat simply because our No. 1 decision, with cloth mat, PVC mat and high quality PE and EVA mat all in joint No. 2 area. But for individuals who don’t really value what happens to NATURE and are looking for attractive and educational mats, PVC mats will be a great one to have.
Fitting Play Mats
If one of your primary purposes of shopping for the take up mat is to put it to use as well as a play yard, you then should buy the one that can in shape nicely within the take up backyard (or at least near to that and sit in the play backyard). Our recommendation isn’t to obtain a play mat that’s bigger than the play backyard since a play backyard that’s sitting along with a perform mat might nonetheless shift when the infant pushes it. However the choice is yours.
Size matters! Thus does thickness!
Of study course size matters! Critically! The play mat has to be spacious enough for the baby to roll and play within it. But you also need to consider the available living space in your house.
The size of the play yard is usually measured in centimeters (cm) or millimeters (mm). Do not rely on the S, M, L and XL size markings because such markings from different suppliers mean different dimensions. Our advice is to always confirm the actual size of the play mat before buying so as to avoid any unwanted misunderstanding and frustration.
And how could we forget about the thickness of the play mat? Thickness matters too! After all, the play mat has to be reasonably thick enough to cushion the fall of the baby. It has to protect the little one from striking the hard ground surface. But how solid should we choose? It certainly depends, since all take up mats will vary. You could be shocked to learn that very soft mats can rise to 40mm solid while space folder mats can rise to 42mm solid! Our suggestion is anything around 10mm for very soft mat ought to be good enough generally. Some parents might favor 15mm thickness for very soft mat. For space folder mat, the typical thickness is 40mm.
The size and materials of the play mat will determine its weight. A typical 15mm PVC mat is a lot more than 2 moments heavier than a common 40mm (no typo error in this article!) space folder mat of the same sizes (i.e. same length and width). That might be an important factor to you when choosing the right play mat. The much heavier PVC mat makes it less portable. Imagine if you have to hold a bulky 10kg mat in one room to another regularly!
Most play mats have some educational values in them, but they might not be attractive enough. The opposite is true too, with some attractive play mats lacking educational values. On the other hand, there are play mats that are brightly colored with attractive styles and educational values. The latest PVC mats take points a step further and provide awesome learning encounters. Using specially engineered and patented ‘pens’, they can play music, speak in multiple languages and can even tell tales and play games. Some top of the range ones even provide augmented fact (AR) learning experience that connect to your smartphones! Really, do you will need that? Such mats are incredibly expensive too. Remember why you desire a play mat to begin with.
Warranty / After-sales support
Some suppliers and retailers allow exchange or refund within 5 days, so long as that is never opened rather than used (but you will have collection cost and administrative cost). Naturally it’ll be great if that point period could be dragged further. Read extra about our Exchange & Return Insurance plan here.
As for warranty, hardly any of these provide it because so many play mats already are reasonably priced. Occasionally, the suppliers may provide a limited 2 weeks to 1 four weeks warranty that covers only defects in components and workmanship but those defects have to be confirmed and agreed by the producers first. Not that we didn’t warn you how limited the warranty is, but that should be good enough. After all, the play mat is much simpler than the play yard and warranty is generally not required. Continue shopping to discover more or simply click here!
When we said easiness, we mean:
- How quick and easy to assemble it when setting up for the very first time?
- How quick and easy to fold it away for storage space when you no longer need it?
- How easy to clean and maintain it?
- Is the play mat waterproof?
- How lightweight and heavy could it be?
- How easy to promote it as a second hand item if you tend to do so?
Overall look is important. You prefer the take up mat to merge with your overall liveable space or the nursery bedroom which you have painstakingly designed for your important one? Would you like a brightly colored take up mat to promote the infant (even though you may still find plenty of scientific debates how color affects infants)? Or do you like lighter, wooden or pastel colours? How about design?