Product Spotlight 11/17: Car Seats — The Bump
June 2021 Moms

Product Spotlight 11/17: Car Seats

Happy Monday! Today in our Product Spotlight Series we have CARSEATS to discuss! This is an item practically everyone will need before the baby is born, so let's get the research rolling!

Do you have specific carseat you love? Tips on scoring deals while remaining within safety guidelines? Travel systems you do or do not recommend? Opinions on different carseats for different stages vs. adjustable ones that can last until your child is 27? FTM questions about fitting these monstrosities into your cars? Please share!

Prior and Upcoming Product Spotlights
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Re: Product Spotlight 11/17: Car Seats

  • We used a nuna pipa for DS. 

    For me, living in a city (and on the 4th floor with no elevator at the time), the most important factors was lightweight and easy to install in different cars. Nuna pipa was it for me as you can install with only a seatbelt and it only weighs 8lbs. Plus since it uses merino wool, it also doesn't use chemicals. Absolutely loved it so much. DS HATED the bassinet of the stroller so we used our car seat on our stroller instead and it was perfect.

    We just got a nuna tres for DS as he needs a bigger carseat and I love this one too. Again, need similar things to above so this was one of the hardest to find - one that can use seatbelt install vs. needing a base for bigger sizes. I was thrilled when I found this one. It lasts from birth until he no longer needs a seat. 
    laurad75
  • We did the Chicco key fit 30 for DD and will likely do it again for this one. I like that it has a base so it’s easy to take the seat from one car to the other. I will say, it is not the lightest seat on its own, but we were able to use it until she turned 1 then switched to convertible seats. 
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  • We have the Uppababy Mesa and love it. We love the whole Uppababy system (Vista stroller which came with a bassinet). The car seat is super easy to click into the bases. It is a little heavy though. We got the Jordan, it is made with merino wool and chemical free. DD is 1.5 and still fits great in it. We will look to get her a convertible soon though.
    Me: 38, DH: 37
    Married: 8/10/13
    BFP- 12/18/15, D&E- 4/8/16 @ 21w5d- confirmed Thanatophoric Dysplasia
    BFP- 11/7/17, M/C- 11/18/17 @ 4w6d
    BFP- 8/25/18 ~ EDD- 5/9/19 ~ DD born 5/2/20 *Lillian Hazel*
    BFP- 10/9/20 ~ EDD- 6/21/21

    laurad75kaw726
  • We have a Doona. It’s great!
    Pregnancy Ticker
  • I also used the Nuna Pipa for DS and loved it.  We have the Uppababy Vista stroller and the car seat so easily pops in with the adapter.  When he grew out of the pipa I upgraded to a Clek Fllo and I love that too.  It's nice and narrow and very easy to clean.  
    History and blog link in spoiler
    2016 - dx with super low ovarian reserve; failed cycle with clomid, failed IUI, 
    2017 - egg retrieval #1 - 3 eggs, 0 embryos appropriate for transfer; ER #2 2 eggs, 0 embryos on day 3; ER #3 1 egg 0 embryos
    moved to donor egg in summer 2017; 35 eggs retrieved; 19 fertilized; 9 total embryos
    Fresh transfer Dec 2017= BFP!  baby boy born 8/22/18

    May 2019 - surprise natural pregnancy ended in MC
    Nov 2019 FET; MC at 9 weeks
    May 2020 FET; BFN
    July 2020 FET; CP treated with methotrexate
    Oct 2020 BFP! 

    Take a look at my blog


  • I LOVE my Babytrend travel center with the Ally 35 car seat. It was a GREAT budget find and I got the one with the double stroller so I don't have to worry if YDS isn't able to walk yet (medical issues) by the time the new baby comes!
    TTC History- *TW* LC
    Me: 24 Dh: 46
    Married: 10.2018
    DS #1: 06.2014
    Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG), Emergency C-Section
    MC: 03.2017- 5 Weeks
    Rainbow DS #2: 07.2018
    HG, 19w Fetal Surgery, 24w PPROM, 33w Placental Abruption, Partial Uterine Rupture, Emergency C-Section
    NICU, Chronic Kidney Disease
    TTC #3: Medically Cleared 12.5.2019, had a bunch of problems and wonky cycles
    BFP 10.13.2020 EDD: 6.26.2021

    October 2020 TTGP Signature Challenge: Pets in Costumes


    DoubleUp8
  • Our infant seat expired so need to get a new one. Had a Chico keyfit 30 and will probably get another since we have the frame stroller it clicks into. We have dionos for once they're bigger- they're heavy as hell but very narrow, and fit great in airplane seats (we always bring one when we fly bc our kids never want to sit on the plane- they're used to being strapped in their car seats so handle flights better in their seats). We fly often to visit our parents, otherwise this wouldn't be as important. 
  • Nuna Pipa for us! It’s so light and clicks right into the Uppababy with an adapter. It’s safety features are top notch. 

    I recently transitioned DS to the Nuna Rava, which is also great. 

    For FTMs: many ppl get an infant car seat bc you can easily take it in and out of the car, which is helpful when your baby falls asleep or whatever. You cannot take a convertible car seat in and out. 

    Read the measurements carefully because infants need to be rear facing and if your car is too small, you’ll lose use of the passenger seat bc it has to be pushed all the way up. 

    I follow a really good account of Instagram “SafeintheSeat” too. Very helpful! 
    laurad75
  • I will be reusing our Maxi Cosi Mico Max 30.  I liked it because the cover was completely machine washable and could be put in the dryer, it was light weight (8lbs), and could be installed with a base or seatbelt.
    BabyFruit Ticker
    DoubleUp8
  • We also used the KeyFit30 on our last and will again now too. It’s one of 2 smallest on the market and still budget friendly. If you have a small car and need short front to back or trying to fit 3 across this is the seat you need. 

    Our first we used a graco and it weighed a ton. I hated it and only used it because it was a gift. 

    Once we switched to convertible we went with britax. 
    Now I’ll be trying to fit 3 across in my car I might do 2 clek and then a third when the bucket seat is done. 
  • We have a Nuna Pipa too and the Nuna Pepp stroller to go with it. DD is off the charts and grew out of the Pipa fairly early but we loved it while it lasted and have gotten a ton of mileage out of the Pepp, she still rides it in almost every day since we take a lot of walks these days. 
    *TTC History*

    Me: 37, MH: 38; Married August 2017

    TTC #1 October 2017: BFP on 12/1/2017, DD born 7/24/2018 @ 37+1 after induction due to preeclampsia

    TTC #2 January 2020: AMA, dx with DOR in May 2020

    IVF July 2020: 16 eggs retrieved, 14 mature, 12 fertilized, 3 blasts, 2 PGT-A normal

    FET 10/7/20: BFP on 10/12/20!!! (EDD 6/25/21); First beta 10/16/20 (9dpt): 148; Second beta 10/19/20 (12dpt): 621; Third beta 10/26/20 (19dpt): 4732; Fourth (and final!) beta 11/2/20 (26 dpt): 22,000+

    laurad75
  • We have the Peg Perego Nido Infant seat. It has great safety ratings but many CPST don’t recommend it because of the chin to chest angle for smaller babies. Although DD was 3 weeks early she was 8 lbs, so we never had an issue with it, but something to be aware of if you are considering it. 

    I recommend going to a baby store and having them install a few models in your car so you can see how they fit. The Clek was on our list but didn’t fit right in our cars. 

    DD is in the Nuna Rava now. I love how easy it is to install! We switch it between H and my car. 

    Like @mc0303 said the fit behind a driver/passenger seat while RF was a big priority for us because H is tall. 
    *TW*
    Me: 36  DH: 41
    Married 5/28/12
    7/2014 BFP #1 - MC 7/28/14
    TTC Since 10/2015
    10/2016 RE appt
    10/2016 Dx Elevated prolactin
    11/2016 HSG results - all normal
    1/2017 SA results - all normal
    4/2017 Dx Elevated TSH 2.6
    5/2017 Dx Chronic Endometritis 
    5/2017 IUI #1
    6/2017 BFP #2: Beta#1 220, Beta#2 550, U/S 6/26 with heartbeat, Born Feb 2018
    TFAS Since 10/2019
    10/2019 BFP #3: Beta#1 25  (16DPO) - MC 10/2019
    11/2019 RE appt - TSH & Prolactin normal
    12/2019 ABX & IUI #1, Negative HPT
    1/2020 IUI #2, Negative HPT
    2/2020 IUI #3 Negative HPT
    3/2020 Cyst developed, Two week BC IUI #4 Cancelled due to Covid
    6/2020 Benched for 3 months
    8/2020 IUI #5 back to back IUI, Negative HPT
    9/2020 IUI #6 BFP #4 12DPO, Beta #1 78 13DPO, Beta #2 178 15DPO, elevated TSH, Beta #3 2458 21DPO, U/S 10/14 w heartbeat!

  • @MelissaMay82 also did the Uppababy set and loved it! Will probably just reuse them for this next kiddo. When we were ready to switch to a convertible seat we upgraded to the Nuna Rava. Nuna makes an all in one now (infant seat and up) which would be interesting, but the ability to click the car seat in and out and onto the stroller is too valuable for me to try an all in one convertible I think. 
    MelissaMay82
  • Another vote for the chicco keyfit!
    I have the chicco Myfit for my 4 year old and it's the best, I'm a big fan of their seats
    Pregnancy Ticker
  • @ramzlau mind blown! I didn’t know baby stores would do tester installs for you! We’re definitely going to have to upgrade both seats since there’s no way the Gracos we used/still use for DS will fit behind DH if he’s driving. 
  • We had the Graco snugfit 35 with DS, and will probably go with a Graco travel system again. We had the fast action jogger from Graco which was great for bumpy sidewalks and when I could start jogging with DS. It's heavier than a lot of the fancy joggers, but it fits our budget.

    I always reference Car Seats for Littles when shopping for a new seat. They have great reviews and photos. I found out about it from a STM in my N14 BMB.
    ~~Signature~~
    Me: 36, DH: 38, Together since: 2006, Married: 9/2011 
    **TW Living Child**

    BFP 9/19/20 - EDD - 6/1/21

    BFP 2/2014 - DS - 10/2014


    ramzlau_orchid_
  • So here's a probably silly question (forgive the FTM :D ).  It looks like most of the car seats come with a base you leave installed.  Can you buy two bases so you can use the same car seat in both cars?  
    laurad75klj0228
  • @ellieemc26 yup!! You can do that. Personally we use one car as the main family car, so install the infant seat there, and then in the other car we install the convertible seat (doesn't come out) for the infrequent times LO would need to be in that car. 
  • @ellieemc26 To second @_orchid_ Yes! But unless you know 100% that you will need one, I would hold off until that time comes. The friends I know that planned ahead and bought two bases rarely needed the second and it was a bit of waste. The only ones that used it was when one was doing drop off at daycare and SO was picking up. Most carseats you can install with a seatbelt as well, so you don't need the base if you get in a pinch. It is just an easier install that keeps it right so you don't have to worry about install every time. 
    *TW*
    Me: 36  DH: 41
    Married 5/28/12
    7/2014 BFP #1 - MC 7/28/14
    TTC Since 10/2015
    10/2016 RE appt
    10/2016 Dx Elevated prolactin
    11/2016 HSG results - all normal
    1/2017 SA results - all normal
    4/2017 Dx Elevated TSH 2.6
    5/2017 Dx Chronic Endometritis 
    5/2017 IUI #1
    6/2017 BFP #2: Beta#1 220, Beta#2 550, U/S 6/26 with heartbeat, Born Feb 2018
    TFAS Since 10/2019
    10/2019 BFP #3: Beta#1 25  (16DPO) - MC 10/2019
    11/2019 RE appt - TSH & Prolactin normal
    12/2019 ABX & IUI #1, Negative HPT
    1/2020 IUI #2, Negative HPT
    2/2020 IUI #3 Negative HPT
    3/2020 Cyst developed, Two week BC IUI #4 Cancelled due to Covid
    6/2020 Benched for 3 months
    8/2020 IUI #5 back to back IUI, Negative HPT
    9/2020 IUI #6 BFP #4 12DPO, Beta #1 78 13DPO, Beta #2 178 15DPO, elevated TSH, Beta #3 2458 21DPO, U/S 10/14 w heartbeat!

    laurad75
  • Thanks guys, great advice!
  • @ellieemc26 I'll piggyback on @ramzlau (we're a good tag team!) - re: daycare drop-off/pick-up: if you need a base in both cars for that, that also means that you'll be leaving the car seat at the daycare with the child. We've always used a daycare center, not a nanny or in-home provider. Our daycare center has limited space and has a policy that any seats that need to be left there are left outside by the exit door. It's odd. If that's your plan I would ask any daycare facility you interview what their policy is. 
    laurad75ramzlauDoubleUp8
  • I need some experienced mom help!!! 

    How do I decide between an all-in-one car seat that can grow with the baby through childhood, OR get a separate infant car seat for now that can be carried in and out of the car? 

    I’m not sure if there are any differences in safety, but I heard it makes life easier to have an infant car seat to not wake the baby going in and out of the car. Any strong opinions out there? We plan to ask my parents for a car seat as our Christmas present! 
  • @ashleyjillian15 I think it is a completely personal preference thing. I like the infant car seat to easily snap into stroller or to place in grocery cart or to take in/out of car. But in theory all of those things can be achieved without an infant seat. You can baby wear at grocery store, use a bassinet style for stroller (this is safer for head positioning too), and if you have a garage or good weather year around, then you may not worry about rain, ice, snow getting the baby in and out of car. It is an extra seat that they use for only as long as you can muscle carrying the seat+baby, and then you can switch to convertible or start leaving it in the car. DD used hers for almost a year, but she is average on weight. I waited and bought the convertible on Black Friday sale when she was almost 1. 
    *TW*
    Me: 36  DH: 41
    Married 5/28/12
    7/2014 BFP #1 - MC 7/28/14
    TTC Since 10/2015
    10/2016 RE appt
    10/2016 Dx Elevated prolactin
    11/2016 HSG results - all normal
    1/2017 SA results - all normal
    4/2017 Dx Elevated TSH 2.6
    5/2017 Dx Chronic Endometritis 
    5/2017 IUI #1
    6/2017 BFP #2: Beta#1 220, Beta#2 550, U/S 6/26 with heartbeat, Born Feb 2018
    TFAS Since 10/2019
    10/2019 BFP #3: Beta#1 25  (16DPO) - MC 10/2019
    11/2019 RE appt - TSH & Prolactin normal
    12/2019 ABX & IUI #1, Negative HPT
    1/2020 IUI #2, Negative HPT
    2/2020 IUI #3 Negative HPT
    3/2020 Cyst developed, Two week BC IUI #4 Cancelled due to Covid
    6/2020 Benched for 3 months
    8/2020 IUI #5 back to back IUI, Negative HPT
    9/2020 IUI #6 BFP #4 12DPO, Beta #1 78 13DPO, Beta #2 178 15DPO, elevated TSH, Beta #3 2458 21DPO, U/S 10/14 w heartbeat!

  • @ashleyjillian15 we registered for one of each with DS1, and received both as gifts. Personally I kind of wish we waited for the convertible until after ds1 was here and I didn't feel so overwhelmed about picking all the baby stuff NOW. Both my kids were tall/heavy so the infant seat only lasted 6 months for us. We ended up buying a different brand of convertible once we knew our kid was long and had a better idea about what mattered to us in a car seat (narrow, fits on an airplane seat, etc). 
  • On both mine ( and will be with this one too ) I used an infant seat with 2 bases, one for each vehicle we use regularly. 
    Around 8 months I switched to the convertible. Having the infant seat was especially helpful in the winter months and bad weather without having to take baby out especially given you’re not supposed to have winter coats etc in the car seat so it was easy to put baby in with a small sweater and a blanket and know they would be warm. 
    I also liked the ease of getting babe in and out of places without having to baby wear. 
    Though for any FTM that might not know you shouldn’t let your baby sleep in the car seat when not in the car. So if you’re thinking they’re asleep I’ll bring them in and lay them on the floor that doesn’t really work since the angle of the seat when not in the base can cause positional asphyxiation. So if they’re asleep you’ll likely have to wake them anyway. 
    marebear15
  • @ashleyjillian15 we started with the infant seat and 2 bases. It was easy to pop the baby in and out of the car and into the stroller or grocery cart. DD is 1.5 now and she is still under the height/weight requirements. Unless she has a major growth spurt she will probably be in that seat until the baby is here and we will buy her a convertible.
    Me: 38, DH: 37
    Married: 8/10/13
    BFP- 12/18/15, D&E- 4/8/16 @ 21w5d- confirmed Thanatophoric Dysplasia
    BFP- 11/7/17, M/C- 11/18/17 @ 4w6d
    BFP- 8/25/18 ~ EDD- 5/9/19 ~ DD born 5/2/20 *Lillian Hazel*
    BFP- 10/9/20 ~ EDD- 6/21/21

  • Just keep in mind that while some convertibles go down to a newborn weight, the fit might not be great. It could depend upon how big or small your baby is. 
    Pregnancy Ticker
  • The infant seat seems so bulky as they get bigger, but for us it was almost an absolute necessity when DD was born. She was on the smaller side and I would not have been comfortable with her in a convertible seat at birth. I also liked being able to carry her in and out of grocery stores and restaurants (although don’t know if this will be an issue in June) and just close the car seat cover so people weren’t tempted to touch or breathe on her. 

    Another heads up for FTMs it is not considered safe to balance your car seat on an upside down wooden restaurant high chair or on the handle/toddler seat area of a grocery cart. Some restaurants have things made specifically for holding infant seats. I just put the seat in the basket area of grocery carts and play grocery Tetris around it. 
    ramzlauDoubleUp8
  • Thank you all the mamas for the wonderful advice!  <3
    mindyb2019
  • I pulled the trigger and ordered the Chicco Bravo Trio Travel System, mainly due to all the positive reviews on the car seat! The whole system was the same price as the car seat alone so it was a no brainer :)  
    klj0228ruemcclanahanDoubleUp8
  • @Wendy838 that's what I got for my son and it's still in great shape! We loved it
    Pregnancy Ticker
    wendy838
  • Sorry for bumping this up, but I'm finally getting comfortable thinking about buying stuff, and I'm getting so overwhelmed!

    I can't decide between infant vs. convertible. My first thought was to go straight for a convertible. I like that they last longer and we don't drive very much anyway (currently once a week for the grocery store, which baby wouldn't necessarily join for, so we're more talking trips and doctors' visits). But...will I regret that? Normally we take cabs somewhat often as well, which makes me think that we should look for something more travel-friendly, which seems to be the infant seats? But then again 1) we probably won't be taking cabs much until late this year regardless because of COVID, and 2) if we're toting a baby one of us will need to stay sober anyway, so we might as well drive if we're going somewhere non-walkable. I can see where an infant seat might still be useful then, but, with COVID, if we're not really going to be going anywhere (i.e. friends' houses, restaurants, etc) until the kid is closer to 6 months anyway, then maybe an infant seat really isn't necessary? Or should we maybe just plan on a convertible and get an infant seat if we really wind up needing it (seeing as we'd have to go for a convertible one anyway), or am I misunderstanding the transition after an infant seat?

    Help! My husband burnt out this conversation after about 3 minutes.
  • @akoros I’d suggest an infant car seat. Unless you know you’re baby’s going to be big, infant car seats are designed for smaller newborn bodies. Because of that, they are safer in accidents. I’d super recommend checking out “safeintheseat” on IG. She also has a whole course on newborn car seat safety. 
    laurad75DoubleUp8
  • We are going with a Chicco KeyFit 30. Honestly, all car seats on the market are safe so if anyone stresses about car seat vs. budget, try not to! We used a Safety 1st with our first two. We received a Chicco from a very trusted friend who wasn't using it anymore and rarely did when her baby was little (it was in their second vehicle). The biggest difference was the ergonomics of buckling and how smoothly it clicked into the base. For those reasons, I think we are going with a Chicco again. 
    Married <3 August 2010
    DD1  <3 August 2011
    DD2 <3 August 2013
    DD3 <3 February 2017
  • DH and I just bought a car seat this weekend and this is my first one so I have nothing else to compare it to lol We decided to go with the Graco Snugride snuglock 35. I like the colors and it seems like it will be good for our family and baby. Im excited to use it. There are sooo many choices out there that its overwhelming and hard to choose. 
    DoubleUp8
  • @akoros We took DD to NYC for a week when she was 7 months and we didn’t take her infant seat, so I can imagine a scenario where a person can live without one. That being said, we were at the doctors office a lot the first few months because of jaundice and acid reflux (Like a few times a week). Having something to contain her while I was packing or digging through a diaper bag or filling out forms was so helpful. If you plan to get one to use in taxis, I would look for one that is easy to use without a base, and their is even the Doona that is a car seat and stroller. Another option is to get an infant car seat and just leave it in the car. We did this starting around 7 months when DD was old enough to sit-up in a high chair at a restaurant or in the grocery cart, so we didn’t need something to contain her (babywearing is also an option, but I found it difficult to lift things while babywearing). We didn’t switch to a convertible until 1 year, and she could have probably stayed in longer without reaching the max height/weight, a lot depends on the size of the baby. I don’t think there is a one-size fits all answer, so it really is about what would work best for your family. I don’t know if this rambling helps at all.
    *TW*
    Me: 36  DH: 41
    Married 5/28/12
    7/2014 BFP #1 - MC 7/28/14
    TTC Since 10/2015
    10/2016 RE appt
    10/2016 Dx Elevated prolactin
    11/2016 HSG results - all normal
    1/2017 SA results - all normal
    4/2017 Dx Elevated TSH 2.6
    5/2017 Dx Chronic Endometritis 
    5/2017 IUI #1
    6/2017 BFP #2: Beta#1 220, Beta#2 550, U/S 6/26 with heartbeat, Born Feb 2018
    TFAS Since 10/2019
    10/2019 BFP #3: Beta#1 25  (16DPO) - MC 10/2019
    11/2019 RE appt - TSH & Prolactin normal
    12/2019 ABX & IUI #1, Negative HPT
    1/2020 IUI #2, Negative HPT
    2/2020 IUI #3 Negative HPT
    3/2020 Cyst developed, Two week BC IUI #4 Cancelled due to Covid
    6/2020 Benched for 3 months
    8/2020 IUI #5 back to back IUI, Negative HPT
    9/2020 IUI #6 BFP #4 12DPO, Beta #1 78 13DPO, Beta #2 178 15DPO, elevated TSH, Beta #3 2458 21DPO, U/S 10/14 w heartbeat!

  • @akoros I considered going only convertible with this one, but remember it was easier to get baby in and out of the car with the infant seat. Especially with Covid I can see the benefit even more to the infant seat as it’s easy to cover up and carry along. My other deciding factor was my first was tiny and even with the infant insert I think she would have been swallowed in a convertible. I don’t want to risk that if this one is small too.
  • @mc0303 @disgruntled_pelican @ramzlau @klj0228 Thank you! From what I'm hearing, it's best to just get the infant seat, both for ease of use and the fact that (depending on size) some convertible seats might still not be that great for an infant anyway? Way too early to tell what size she'll be, but I was super small (preemie, but then also was on the small side throughout childhood and am still very short) and I think my husband was more of an average size, so there's a chance we'll skew small. I guess I also shouldn't try to make things harder on ourselves without a good reason. 

    @mindyb2019 I know, so overwhelming! I'm ok looking at different brands, it's when you have to make decisions like infant v. convertible at the outset that I start to get overwhelmed. 

    Thanks, everyone! This was super helpful. I saw a lot of your comments last night and started looking at infant seats, targeting the Chicco KeyFit and Graco Snugride. Also looked at Safety 1st, so your note is really useful @disgruntled_pelican
    mindyb2019
  • @akoros We has a Graco SnugRide with DS, but it expired, so we got a new one for the baby. We got the travel system so the car seat clicks into the stroller. It was very easy for walks to be able to just click in the car seat when DS was little. 

    ~~Signature~~
    Me: 36, DH: 38, Together since: 2006, Married: 9/2011 
    **TW Living Child**

    BFP 9/19/20 - EDD - 6/1/21

    BFP 2/2014 - DS - 10/2014


  • Thanks @DoubleUp8! I think I'm circling around the Snugride (debating the regular vs. LX) or Chicco KeyFit 30 after everyone's feedback. 

    One quick question: I read that you're not supposed to leave them in the carseat for too long, does that also apply to when using it on a stroller or is it really just talking about setting it on the floor? Mainly debating whether I should aim for a stroller that's compatible with the carseat, or if I shouldn't bother since I'll need a bassinet-type attachment anyway.
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