just sleep

if like us you like sleep, you'll love just sleep®

sleep peacefully with our 10-year guarantee, delivered in 48 hours.


4 min read

newborn bedding guide

written by Liz Tabron

updated 19.08.2022

Baby stood in a cot with blanket

From night feeds to nappy changing and the constant juggling of tasks, one thing is for sure, being a new parent is hard work, and especially when you’re suffering from sleep deprivation too. Quality sleep is vital for everyone, and even more so for your baby’s physical and mental development, which makes choosing the best baby bedding so important. Our guide will point you in the right direction to ensure you choose the baby cot bedding that’s both safe and comfortable to help your baby get the sleep they need.

what bedding do you need for a cot?

For the first 12 months, the only bedding you need for your baby is a fitted sheet, a breathable blanket or a baby sleeping bag. Baby sleep bags are a safe and comfortable alternative to blankets, they provide cosy comfort, whilst still allowing your baby to wriggle.

what is proper bedding for babies?

Baby sleeping bags are a popular choice for many parents and the great thing about them is that your baby won’t be able to kick one off, so they won’t get cold and wake up. It’s important to choose a sleep bag that fits your baby and to check the fit as they grow. Make sure it’s not too loose around your baby’s neck and that it fits on the shoulders to prevent your baby from slipping down inside the bag.

what bedding do babies need?

If you’re not opting for a baby sleeping bag, then you will need to choose cotton sheets and blankets, which are easy to layer and help keep your baby at the right temperature since babies can’t regulate their own body temperature.

Cellular blankets are ideal as they are lightweight and breathable, providing comfort and helping to regulate your baby’s temperature. Just make sure that any sheets and blankets are tucked in firmly below shoulder level.

In addition to a baby blanket you will need 100% jersey cotton fitted sheets for extra comfort. Cotton is super soft to the touch, making it  perfectly suitable for your baby’s delicate skin.

are cot quilts safe for babies?

Avoid using pillows and duvets if your little one is less than 12 months old, as this type of bulky bedding can cause accidental suffocation and will make your baby too hot, which is believed to be a risk factor for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). You should also remove any soft toys from the cot before laying your baby down to sleep.

when should I change my babies bedding?

Baby sheets should be cleaned every 2 weeks, this prevents any bacteria spreading and keeps the cot nice and clean. It's best to have a couple of spare fitted sheets in case of any accidents, then you can ensure you're always prepared with a clean sheet in need of a quick change.

do I need a mattress protector for newborns?

Accidents can and will happen, so it’s important to protect your baby’s mattress with a waterproof cover. This will help keep the mattress in good condition and protect your baby from bacteria, dust mites and other allergens. When choosing a waterproof mattress protector, opt for one that’s made from natural fibres such as cotton, and so will be soft and breathable, ensuring total comfort for your baby.

what is swaddling?

Swaddling is a traditional way to wrap a baby up gently in a light breathable blanket. A swaddle wrap is a light blanket ideally made from cotton because of its lightweight and breathable properties. Cotton is a flexible material making it perfect for easy wrapping and movement. Make sure to have only their body wrapped and not the neck or head, helping them to feel safe and soothed. Newborn babies respond well to swaddling, as it recreates the snug and secure feeling of the womb. 

is swaddling good for babies?

It is a method used to promote sleep and calm by providing a sense of security when they feel overstimulated. A swaddle wrap is a great way to help your baby sleep thoroughly, it reduces startle reflexes which is a common cause of sleep disturbances in newborns. However, you should make sure that you follow these tips to safely swaddle your baby or speak to your midwife or health visitor if still unsure:

how to swaddle your baby

  • You should always use thin, breathable materials to swaddle your baby.

  • Wrap your baby firmly but gently and don’t swaddle above the shoulders. Tight swaddling prevents your baby’s hips and knees from moving freely and may cause hip dysplasia, which is when the hip does not form correctly

  • Make sure your baby can move their hips and knees freely to kick and their legs should be able to fall into a natural position.

  • Always put your baby to sleep on their back - never put a swaddled baby to sleep on their front or side.

  • Keep a regular check on your baby’s temperature to ensure they don’t get too hot resulting in overheating

It is important to stop swaddling your baby at two months old, as it is unsafe when they start rolling over. If you’re considering swaddling your baby, always follow safe swaddling guidelines to keep them protected.

good read? share this with a friend