The Best Toddler BedsUpdated on October 26, 2020 While all product recommendations are chosen independently, we may receive compensation for purchases made through our site. Learn more about our affiliate program here.
Transitioning from a crib to a bed is a big milestone for toddlers. Toddler beds are designed with safety and security in mind. These beds tend to be lower to the ground, with guardrails and other safety precautions in place. Toddler beds tend to fit a standard crib size mattress, making the transition from crib to bed even easier.
There are plenty of considerations for shoppers when it comes to selecting a toddler bed. From the different styles available, to the price and durability of the bed, we cover the factors you should consider before purchasing a toddler bed. We also include our top picks for the best toddler beds. These selections are safe, durable, and easy to assemble. There are a variety of designs to suit different needs and preferences.
We’ll also help you understand when children should move to a toddler bed, and what to consider before making the change.
Our Top Picks
|Canton Toddler Bed||– Sleigh style toddler bed – Durable wood construction – Low to the floor with guardrails for safety – Fits standard size crib mattress||See Best Price|
|Classic Design Toddler Bed||Classic Design Toddler Bed – Low to the floor with center leg for stability – Two side safety rails – Multiple color options – Durable wood construction||See Best Price|
|Caribou Solid Hardwood Twin Bunk Bed||– High-quality rubberwood construction – Bunk bed can be separated into two twin beds – Attached ladder and guardrails||See Best Price|
|Plastic Toddler Bed||– Low to the ground design – Steel frame and high-quality plastic construction – 16 character designs to choose from – Easy to assemble||See Best Price|
|Benton 4-in-1 Convertible Crib||– Convertible crib style transitions from a crib to a toddler bed or daybed – Adjustable mattress height – Multiple finishes to choose from||See Best Price|
Delta Children Canton Toddler Bed
Why we like it:
- Low to the ground design makes it easy for children to climb in and out
- Contemporary sleigh style with durable wood construction
- Guardrails for added safety
- Easy to assemble
The Delta Children Canton toddler bed is a classic sleigh style bed with a durable wood construction. Available in Cherry or White, this bed sits low to the floor and is easy for kids to climb in and out of. Since it has some room underneath, air can still circulate around the bed and mattress.
The bed is easy to assemble and includes side guardrails. This toddler bed accommodates a standard crib-size mattress and has slats for support. It is also JPMA certified and meets ASTM and CPSC standards. The bed safely holds children up to 50 pounds.
The Canton bed is a great choice for those who are shopping on a budget. It is a high-quality toddler bed at an affordable price point. The sleigh style is a classic design that can be easily used again for siblings.
Dream On Me Classic Design Toddler Bed
Why we like it:
- Durable solid wood construction with multiple finishes to choose from
- Side guardrails and center leg for safety and stability
- Contemporary design with arched headboard and footboard
- Low to the floor, making it easy for kids to climb in and out
The Dream On Me Classic is a popular choice due to its simplistic design and durable solid wood construction. This toddler bed has over 1,000 reviews and a 4.3 out of 5 star rating on Amazon. The bed is low to the ground, making it accessible for kids. It has a weight capacity of 50 pounds, with a center leg that adds stability to the bed. The side guardrails are an added safety feature, and the Classic Design bed adheres to all CPSC and ASTM safety standards.
This bed fits any standard crib-size mattress, and can be purchased with or without a Dream on Me mattress. The solid wood is available in multiple finishes, from neutral to bright colors, so you can choose a color that fits the decor and style of the bedroom. The price point of the Dream On Me Classic Design toddler bed is affordable, making it an ideal choice for those who are buying for multiple kids or have a budget in mind.
Storkcraft Caribou Solid Hardwood Twin Bunk Bed
Why we like it:
- Versatile bunk bed style can be separated into two twin beds
- High-quality, dense rubberwood construction
- Unique fastening system for added safety and security
- Room for storage underneath
The Storkcraft Caribou Solid Hardwood Twin bunk bed is an ideal choice for shared bedrooms. The beds can be stacked and secured as a bunk bed, or separated for use as two twin-size beds. The bed is constructed from high-quality rubberwood, which is denser than pine wood. As a result, the bed is sturdy and durable.
When used as a bunk bed, the Storkcraft Caribou bed has an attachable 4-step ladder. It also has full-length guardrails on the top bunk for added safety. The bed complies with ASTM and CPSC safety standards. The versatile design works for siblings who share a room, or in guest bedrooms. Since it accommodates twin-size mattresses, the Caribou bed will last beyond the toddler stage. There is also room underneath the bed for storage.
The Storkcraft Caribou bunk bed is available in four colors: Espresso, Grey, Navy, and White. It is a popular choice due to its versatility and high-quality construction, with over 1,000 reviews and a 4.4/5 star rating on Amazon.
Delta Children Plastic Toddler Bed
Why we like it:
- Low to the ground design with guardrails for safety
- Durable steel frame with high-quality plastic construction
- 16 designs to choose from with recognizable characters
- Easy to assemble
The Delta Children Plastic toddler bed is a popular choice for kids, thanks to the multiple character options and colorful style. The bed is made with a durable steel frame and high-quality plastic. There are 16 designs to choose from, with decals that include characters from Disney and Pixar cartoons. The plastic headboard, footboard, and side guardrails are color-coordinated with the character decals for a fun look.
The bed sits low to the ground, so it should be easy for kids to get in and out of the bed. It supports a standard crib mattress with metal bars and a fabric panel. The Delta Children Plastic toddler bed is easy to assemble and affordable. It is best for children 15 months and older and has a maximum weight capacity of 50 pounds. The bed is JPMA certified and meets CPSC and ASTM safety standards.
Graco Benton 4-in-1 Convertible Crib
Why we like it:
- The versatile design and adjustable mattress height lets the crib grow with your baby
- Durable New Zealand pine wood construction
- Multiple options for finishes to match any bedroom
The Graco Benton 4-in-1 convertible crib is designed with versatility in mind. The bed easily converts from a crib to a toddler bed by removing one side. A guardrail is not necessary, but can be purchased separately if preferred. The mattress height of the Benton crib is adjustable, allowing the crib to accommodate your baby as they grow. The toddler bed is recommended for those who are at least 35 inches tall, with a maximum weight of 50 pounds. The crib can also be used as a daybed, or converted into a full-size bed with a separate conversion kit.
The minimalist design with wood slats and an arched backboard is available in six colors: Black, Driftwood, Espresso, Pebble Grey, Grey, and White. It is JPMA certified and meets or exceeds the safety standards of CPSC and ASTM. The New Zealand pine wood construction is durable and the crib is designed to last through the toddler years and beyond.
Toddler Bed Buyer’s Guide
Choosing the right toddler bed can feel daunting, especially considering how many styles are available. Which toddler bed is right for you will depend on how much space you have, your overall budget, and which materials you prefer. Toddler beds promote safety with features like side guardrails and low heights.
Beyond keeping your toddler safe, toddler beds can encourage independence, personalize the bedroom, and make bedtime a fun routine. Unique features can help your toddler see the switch from a crib to a toddler bed as an exciting change.
We’ve outlined the different types of toddler beds, factors to take into consideration prior to purchasing a toddler bed, and how to know it’s time to move from the crib to a toddler bed.
Types of Toddler Beds
There are several types of toddler beds, each of which functions differently. Which style you choose will depend on your personal needs and preferences. All toddler beds are designed with safety in mind and help your toddler transition from a crib to a full-size bed.
An adjustable bed lets you adjust the height of the bed frame or mattress. This allows the bed to grow with your baby, accommodating their height and making it easier to get in and out of the bed. Some toddler beds also have adjustable guardrails. This type of bed is ideal for a customized fit as your child grows.
A convertible crib typically transforms into a toddler bed, daybed, or full-size bed. The front guard can be removed and the mattress lowered to transition from a crib into a toddler bed or daybed. Convertible cribs accommodate your child from infancy through the toddler years and beyond. These types of cribs may require conversion kits, which are often sold separately.
A sleigh bed is a toddler bed that is shaped like a sleigh, with a curved headboard and footboard. This style is typically constructed from wood, and is considered to be a classic and durable style. Sleigh beds often have side guard rails for added safety.
Panel-style toddler beds have guardrails that are panels, rather than guardrails with slats or openings. This style may also have panels at the headboard and footboard.
A daybed has three sides that frame the bed: a headboard, a footboard, and a panel along one side. Toddler daybeds may have a partial guardrail on the open side for added safety. This type of bed can be used as a bed and as a sofa-style sitting area.
Character beds tend to have decals of recognizable characters, often from Disney or Pixar cartoons. Vehicle beds are shaped like cars or other vehicles. These beds are often constructed with plastic. They tend to be brightly colored and are designed to make bedtime more fun for kids.
A travel bed is portable and lightweight. This kind of toddler bed is ideal for travel, or for staying over at the grandparents’ house. Travel beds can be inflatable, fold-up, or cot style.
Toddler Bed Considerations
There are many factors to look at before purchasing a toddler bed. Everyone has unique needs and preferences when it comes to design, construction, and versatility. Safety is also an important concern for toddler beds. Reviewing these considerations and determining your priorities and preferences will help you choose the toddler bed that best suits your needs.
- Safety: Safety is the most important factor when it comes to selecting a toddler bed, and the Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association (JPMA) certifies beds that comply with the standards set forth by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Most toddler beds are low to the floor with guardrails for added safety. Any finishes on the bed should be non-toxic. It is also important to check the weight limit of the bed.
- Size: Most toddler beds accommodate a standard crib-size mattress, making the transition from crib to bed easier. Other toddler beds may fit a twin mattress, allowing the bed to last beyond the toddler years. In shared rooms, a smaller toddler bed may be preferable. Bunk beds are also an option for shared rooms.
- Design: When it comes to design, there are plenty of choices for toddler beds. Consider your needs and preferences for decor. Character beds can make the room feel more personalized, but may be outgrown quickly. Classic styles with durable construction are ideal for those who plan on passing the bed down to siblings.
- Price: High-quality materials tend to be more expensive, though they can last longer. If you are purchasing a convertible bed that grows with your child, it is more of an investment but it will also last through the toddler years into adolescence. Plastic toddler beds tend to be more affordable, while wood beds may be more expensive.
- Versatility and Adjustability: Convertible toddler beds are the most versatile, as these styles can often transform from a crib to a toddler bed, daybed, or a full-size bed. Toddler beds may have adjustable mattress heights for a customizable fit. The least versatile toddler bed style may be a character or vehicle bed.
- Quality of Material: Durable materials like wood and steel tend to last longer. A high-quality toddler bed can also be passed down to younger siblings. Consider the length of time you plan on using the bed, as well as your overall budget. High-quality furniture is an investment.
- Ease of Use and Cleaning: Toddler beds are often low to the ground, making it easy for kids to climb in and out of bed safely. Since messes do happen, cleaning and care instructions for the bed should be taken into consideration. Plastic toddler beds are the easiest to clean.
When Should Children Move to a Toddler Bed?
Moving children from a crib to a toddler bed is a big step. The ideal age range for upgrading to a toddler bed is 18 to 24 months, but age is not the only factor to consider. There are several telltale signs that your child is ready for the move.
Once your child is 35 inches tall, they may be too tall for a crib. If they have started standing or climbing in the crib, this can become a safety concern. Toddler beds are designed with mobile toddlers in mind, often sitting low to the ground with guardrails to prevent falls.
The move from a crib to a toddler bed may also be a necessity if there is a younger sibling on the way. If your toddler is ready for a toddler bed, transitioning out of the crib a couple of months before the younger sibling arrives is ideal.
There are also emotional aspects to consider. Because this age range can be filled with other milestones, including potty training, it is important that your toddler does not feel overwhelmed by the change. Some toddlers may feel an attachment to their crib, while others will be excited to transition to a bigger bed. Maintaining a bedtime routine can help with the adjustment.