A car seat is one of the most essential pieces of gear you will need for your baby. This all-important seat will serve as baby’s main mode of transport even through the toddler years. Choosing a car seat, however, can often feel overwhelming with the added pressure to pick the safest seat for your brand-new babe. The good news is that every car seat that’s sold in the U.S. has met and passed all government safety requirements. Whether you are shelling a bunch of cash to upgrade to the luxury model or staying in a budget-friendly price range, your seat meets all current safety standards. The bad news is that it can be daunting to sort through all the options to pick out the perfect car seat. What makes the seats stand out are cushier fabrics, larger canopies, and extra safety features that go above what’s required.
When looking for car seats there are two main categories: infant car seats and convertible car seats. (As your child gets older you can also consider booster seats.)
An Infant Car Seat is a rear-facing seat that can be used with a stroller, these are easy to take in and out of the car and accommodate a baby from birth up to about 35–40 pounds.
- The Britax B-Safe 35 Elite Infant Car Seat is a highly rated rear-facing infant car seat with some premium updates to Britax popular Britax B-Safe 35. In addition to Britax SafeCell Protection built into its steel frame, this comfty, contoured car seat also features premium washable fabrics like a funky black and white print, a quick-adjust headrest, and no-rethread harness. An extra generous canopy is just a bonus.
- Mix fashion, comfort, safety, and the most lightweight infant car seat and you will get Maxi-Cosi’s Mico Max 30 Infant Car Seat. This seat ranks high on both our safety and luxury lists. This sleek car seat is for the fashionable parents that keep baby’s safety in the forefront while also racking in some style points.
- The Muv Kussen Infant Car Seat features a controlled motion base that rotates to an upright position in case of impact. The clean design and ergonomic carry handle give it contemporary fashion look while they enhance the function nicely. points.
A Convertible Car Seat is both rear- and forward-facing and stays with your child from birth up to about 65 pounds, which means you can use it with your child all the way through the preschool years. These typically do not pair up with strollers.
- Snug as a bug in a car seat, the Chicco NextFit Convertible Car Seat is a good fit. This convertible car seat is rear- and forward-facing with multiple recline points, a high back, and a comfortable fit for your growing child.
- Click and go! The Britax ClickTight Boulevard Convertible Car Seat brings luxury to convertible car seats. This convertible car seat boasts the ClickTight installation system, which is very easy and secure and features a steel-reinforced frame, an impact-absorbing base, and protective features for side impact.