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Is the SNOO worth it? Here’s my honest review of the SNOO bassinet

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Is the SNOO Bassinet worth it? Here’s my honest rental review

Hi there! If you’ve stumbled upon this post you’ve likely already heard about the SNOO smart sleeper bassinet and are wondering whether or not it’s really worth it. And you want an honest review that will tell you if this thing is really all that and a bag of chips.

I hear you. It almost seems too good to be true, an electronic bassinet that will shush and soothe your baby to sleep. What’s the catch? Well, there is one, and it’s the cost — but there’s even a workaround with that. So if you’re terrified of the sleepless newborn phase or are already a captain on team no sleep, keep reading. 

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**I was given a SNOO rental for the purposes of this review, but the opinions are 100% my own. I’d never recommend or endorse anything I wouldn’t use or buy myself. This post contains affiliate links. That means if you buy something using one of my links I may receive a small commission – at no additional cost to you! It’s kind of boring, but feel free to read my full disclosure if you want more info.

✔️ Is the SNOO worth the cost? → YES!

Ok, I’m going to dive into a LOT of information on the SNOO bassinet, but before I do – I’ll just tell you straight up — yes, a SNOO is worth it

I would buy (or rent) this thing in a heartbeat if we had another baby. There’s just something about those first sleepless weeks with a newborn that no one can prepare you for. If you’ve ever wondered what it looks like to fall asleep while doing something, or even mid-conversation, video yourself the first two weeks home with a newborn. 

In short, the SNOO bassinet provides an extra set of “hands” to help soothe your baby to sleep. This might not seem like a big thing right now, but when you’re facing your 15th wakeup of the night and your baby ONLY wants to sleep in your arms or on top of you, it’s huge. If this sounds like something you already know you want to avoid – head over to The Happiest Baby site and shop SNOO to sign up for your delivery. 

However, if you’re like me, you’re going to want a little more information than that before you dive in. You probably have a ton of questions. I endlessly researched the SNOO and other bassinets before we had our baby, so I’ll try to answer all of them. We also used the SNOO for the entire six months (eek) so I am basically an expert since that’s almost over the recommended time you’re supposed to use it.  

Why would I want a SNOO Bassinet?

In March 2020, the world became a different place than it was even a few months before. With everything that happened this year, it’s even more important to ensure you’re taking care of yourself. As a new mom, this includes getting the most sleep that you can.

 Do everything you can to relax, and try to maximize sleep to help prioritize your mental health. I know, maximizing sleep with a new baby is hilarious. That’s one of the reasons the SNOO bassinet is even more relevant right now. 

Outside the baby’s safety and whether they are eating, sleep is probably the top priority on your list. I struggled through sleep deprivation for an entire YEAR with my first baby. She wouldn’t sleep flat on her back in her Pack N Play past 4 a.m. We kept her in a Rock N Play from 4-6 a.m. Once those were recalled I had no idea what we were going to do if we had another baby. I felt like a zombie after waking up 3-4 times per night.

With my second, I felt like there had to be another way. Yes, the early days are always going to be tough no matter what. I just wasn’t thrilled with the idea of waking up every few hours for another year. I was browsing Pinterest and was lucky enough to stumble upon this gem while I was pregnant. Enter the SNOO smart sleeper bassinet. 

Since I’m obsessed with bringing you guys the most relevant information for babies, I knew I had to do a Snoo bassinet review. I initially wrote this article after we’d been using it for a month, and it was a game-changer.

I’ve updated it now that our daughter is nine months and I’ve had more time to reflect on the whole thing. I’m going to walk you through a full review of the pros and cons of this bassinet so you can decide if it’s worth it for you.

Related: Will I ever sleep again? When do babies finally sleep through the night?

What is a SNOO Smart Sleeper Bassinet?

First things first – if you haven’t done any research on it before, you might be wondering what the heck is a SNOO? You may have seen it on Pinterest or a baby must-have list, and not known what it was. 

The SNOO Smart Sleeper Bassinet is a high tech baby bassinet. It was specifically designed to be one of the safest baby beds on the market. As a bonus, it claims to get young infants to sleep longer. 

It was created by Dr. Harvey Karp, author of The Happiest Baby on the Block. This bassinet mimics the sound and motion of the womb with continuous, doctor-designed motion and white noise. 

As your baby awakens or gets upset, the SNOO automatically responds and increases its motion or level of white noise, soothing your baby back to sleep so you don’t even have to get up. 

Of course, you’ll need to wake for night feedings and changes, but the SNOO claims to add 1-2 hours to your baby’s sleep. They advertise that most infants are sleeping 7-9 hours by two months old. They don’t caveat whether or not this is WITH or without feedings, and we certainly didn’t get there, but I’d still recommend it — and soon you’ll see why. 

Meet the SNOO Smart Sleeper Bassinet

How does the SNOO work?

SNOO was built based on using the 5 S’s of soothing your baby. Dr. Harvey Karp popularized these techniques for soothing your baby in his book, The Happiest Baby on the Block. The five “S’s” are now well-known ways you can soothe a fussy baby.

The Five “S’s” are Swaddle, Side/Stomach position, Shush, Swing, and Suck. Until now, they were techniques used hands-on by parents. With the invention of the SNOO, they’re incorporated into the bassinet. I’ll go into them briefly just so you know a little bit more about the science behind this smart sleeper.

Swaddle: Babies may not like to be swaddled at first, and may even fight a swaddle, but the tight wrap reminds them of the womb. If you swaddle a baby, and then continue with the other “S’s” you’ll likely get them calm in just a few minutes. 

Side/Stomach: Putting your baby on their side once swaddled is the next step to calming crying and fussiness. 

Shush: Babies love loud white noise. The shushing sound also reminds them of the womb, and is one of the best ways to keep them asleep. 

Swing: A swinging motion is reminiscent of being lulled to sleep when mom was walking around, which is why babies LOVE motion, and many fall asleep in the car.

Suck: The final “S” to calm a fussy baby is suck, and the sucking reflex is one of the strongest urges your little one has. This is why many are instantly soothed by nursing or a pacifier.

The SNOO bassinet’s white noise and motion are on all night to keep your little one sleeping soundly. SNOO automatically responds to your baby’s cries and increases its intensity of motion and the volume of white noise to help soothe your infant to sleep. 

The built in motor and white noise adjust to the volume and duration of the baby’s crying. The white noise changes pitch and volume as your baby moves from whimpering to full out crying. The back and forth motion that is a gentle lull while the baby is calm, becomes quite “jiggly” when your baby is agitated. 

The increase in volume and intensity soothe many babies back to sleep without their parents ever needing to get out of bed. And, if your baby really needs you, SNOO will automatically shut off after two minutes. This way, you don’t have to worry about whether or not your baby was really hungry, dirty, or needed something else. 

While you can’t put your baby to sleep on his side or stomach, and there’s no built-in pacifier, the bassinet does incorporate all of the other soothing elements.

how does snoo work to soothe your baby?
Our littlest love soothed to sleep by the SNOO

How do you use the SNOO?

To use the SNOO you simply put baby in the easy-to-use SNOO sleepsack (that comes with your purchase or rental) and clip them into the SNOO so that they can’t roll. It’s important to note that the SNOO won’t turn on unless your baby is fully clipped in for safety. 

You then just push the button on the side of the bassinet and your SNOO will shush the baby to sleep. If you’re putting your baby down drowsy, this shouldn’t take long at all. Your baby will likely wake up a little when you go to clip her in. Luckily, the SNOO will work its magic and she’ll be back to sleep in no time. 

If your baby gets upset, the bassinet will automatically adjust its level of white noise and soothing to put her back to sleep. 

The smart technology isn’t only relegated to the bassinet. It’s also included with the app that lets you control the bassinet through WIFI. 

The mobile app can control the level and intensity of the SNOO’s movement as well. This means you don’t have to wait on the automatic adjustments from SNOO, and you can “lock” the bassinet on a specific setting. It also provides a report of baby’s sleep right at your fingertips. 

As a new sleep-deprived mom, it’s often hard to remember what you had for dinner, much less how many hours your baby slept. The app and sleep log are a huge bonus to help you track how often and how long the baby is sleeping. 

How long will baby sleep in SNOO?

Is the SNOO bassinet safe?

As with anything you purchase for your baby, you’re going to want to know that it’s safe. The great news is that the SNOO bassinet is actually billed as “the safest baby bed ever made.” There are a few reasons for this, but likely the most obvious reason is that SNOO is designed to keep your baby on their back. 

The SNOO sleepsacks that were designed especially for the SNOO Smart Sleeper help keep baby safe all night long. They prevent rolling and unsafe sleep positions like side or tummy sleeping. The SNOO sack has wings that slide onto clips in the base of the bed, which prevents risky rolling. 

One of the other major benefits is that when babies sleep more, parents sleep more. This means you’ll be much less likely to fall asleep in an unsafe position (like on a recliner or in a bed full of fluffy pillows and blankets). 

Additionally, if you’re worried about EMF and WIFI affecting your baby, there is a WIFI barrier that prevents it from reaching your baby. You can also fully turn off the WIFI on SNOO.  

Why SNOO is the safest most effective baby bed on the market

How long can you use the SNOO?

You can use the SNOO from the day you come home from the hospital until about six months, or until your baby can push up on their hands and knees. 

The bassinet comes with three sleepsacks, sized small, medium, and large, which go up to about 25 lbs. Many parents decide to use the SNOO bassinet for the first few months, and then transition into a crib once their baby has made it through the four-month sleep regression. 

Related: How to survive the four-month sleep regression

If you’re only going to use it a few months, or are only planning on one child, a SNOO rental is a great way to make it worth the cost.

The website says you can use a SNOO up until about six months, and from five to six months is a great time to wean your baby to a crib. This brings up another important consideration for families looking at a SNOO, which is how to transition them to another sleep location.

Do babies become dependant on the SNOO?

This is a fantastic question, and one I’ll admit I was terrified to think a lot about while we were still using our SNOO. I mean, this thing literally rocks and shushes your baby all night long. I was terrified I’d never be able to put her down anywhere else, and that she’d never nap in a Pack N Play or crib. Or that we’d never be able to travel without the bassinet. I didn’t want to trade an early problem for an even bigger problem later on when we were transitioning, or on vacation. 

I definitely worried about the transition out of the SNOO, but after a few totally sleepless nights I just wanted something that worked to help me get some sleep. There is nothing quite like the exhaustion of the first couple of weeks with a newborn, and we needed help. 

**Update: at five months we actually DID take our SNOO on vacation. We could not get our little one to sleep more than one to two hours outside the SNOO, but that was likely due to the fact that her arms were unswaddled. I don’t really know if it was actual SNOO dependence, but we weren’t willing to risk not sleeping for an entire week without it. More on our weaning experience below. 

Is it hard to wean from the SNOO to a crib?

I’ll start by saying that many people say that their babies have no trouble weaning from the SNOO to a crib between five and six months. The SNOO has been around for a few years now (they launched late 2016) and there have been many generations of SNOO users who share that transitioning to the crib from SNOO wasn’t an issue.

Since I’m being honest, I’m not going to sugarcoat it. We did not have a seamless transition, but that was because we were having trouble getting our daughter’s arms unswaddled for months before we switched. 

SNOO sleepsacks have two armholes to allow your baby to have their arms free once they’re ready. Unfortunately, every time we tried this our daughter woke herself up every hour or so, or wouldn’t go down to sleep. We were in a vicious cycle of double swaddling for months, were only able to get her arms out when we moved to the crib.  

how to transition from SNOO to the crib

We were going to have to deal with some transition pain either way, so we held on to sleep as long as we could before weaning.

How does SNOO’s weaning mode work?

At about five to six months, your baby should be ready to switch to weaning mode. The bassinet has a weaning feature that makes it easier to transition the baby out of the SNOO and into a crib. 

You turn on weaning mode in the app, and SNOO stops its continuous motion unless your baby is upset. The motion and intensity will continue to increase as usual if your baby is fussing, but will remain stationary the rest of the night. 

White noise stays on all night, but this shouldn’t be an issue with your transition as you’ll hopefully be using white noise in your baby’s room or while they’re in the crib anyway. 

Weaning mode is great because I was definitely hesitant thinking we’d have to go cold turkey at the end of six months. (More info on how simple that is here.)

Our daughter didn’t have a problem losing the motion. She slept well in weaning mode from about five months on. Our biggest challenge was attempting to get her arms out of the double swaddle. 

Do you need to buy other items for the SNOO?

Another big question is whether or not you need more stuff on top of the very expensive bassinet. The short answer to this is no. It comes with the sleep sacks and the sheet you need, but the long answer is, unfortunately, yes. Here are a few things that will just make your life easier.

Extra sleep sacks

For one thing, your baby will pee, poop, or spit up while in the SNOO. You’re going to want an extra sleep sack in each size so you’re not scrambling around in the middle of the night trying to get your baby back to sleep without a SNOO sack.

An extra sheet

We got lucky and didn’t have too many blowouts that made it through to the SNOO sacks, but our daughter had bad reflux which resulted in a LOT of spit-up. One way around getting an extra sheet is to flip the mattress around until morning, but if your baby is a spitter, it’s just easier to get an extra sheet.

The SNOO big bundle

The big bundle gives you an extra size of each sleep sack as well as new sheets, so it’s the best value if you’re just going to stock up on everything.

SNOO Leg Lifters

There are also “Leg Lifters” you can add to one side of the bassinet to help with reflux and colds. These lifters raise the SNOO and angle baby’s head 10 degrees to help with reflux. This angle is what’s recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Our little lady still spit up fairly regularly even after we raised the head of the bassinet. We did feel like we were helping her a little bit with elevation. Many reviews say to add other items underneath the bassinet legs to get a higher raise, but this is against the manufacturer’s directions. I would only use the leg lifters sold by Happiest Baby to stay safest.

SNOO Shorty Legs

SNOO shorty legs will bring the bassinet down so that you can see in from your bed. This makes it more like a bedside bassinet or co-sleeper while still providing all the benefits of a SNOO. 

The Sleepea Swaddle

The Sleepea swaddle was critical for us when we wanted our little one to nap in her crib. As I mentioned earlier, she was NOT happy with her arms out. The Sleepea allowed us to easily swaddle her with her arms down and work on crib naps the first few months. 

Although the SNOO recommendation is to have all naps and overnight sleep in the bassinet for consistency, we wanted to practice in the crib. I was also working a lot in our room and it was easier to have the baby elsewhere for one nap a day.

The Sleepea was a great way to keep some of the consistency of the SNOO (it’s the same sack, just without the clips) while allowing our baby to get used to napping in her crib.

A transitional swaddle like the Zippadee Zip

If you’re one of the lucky ones whose baby just magically moves from the SNOO to a crib with no issue, you might not need one of these. However, for those of us who have babies that REALLY fight the transition, you’ll likely need another item as you make the switch. 

We got a zippadee zip because our daughter was definitely beyond the phase where we felt comfortable using a Magic Merlin Sleepsuit. I was always nervous about using a magic merlin due to the size and weight, but some parents swear by them. 

The zippadee zip wasn’t a cure-all but was definitely an improvement over going arms out cold turkey. We used it exclusively from 6-9 months after we weaned from the SNOO but before we were finally able to go into a regular sleep sack. 

Related: The newborn baby essentials checklist (plus printable download)

How much does the SNOO bassinet cost?

After reading about all the awesome features I’m sure you’re wondering who wouldn’t want this thing. And you’d be right. But, as with anything, there’s always a downside. 

From what we’ve seen, the main downside of the SNOO is the cost. To buy a new SNOO you’re looking at a full retail price of $1395. 

People who may benefit from purchasing a SNOO are those who are looking to have multiple children, or who want to resell or gift it to a friend after their first child. 

If you’re going to have more than one child and are planning to rent, it’s probably cheaper to just buy one, especially if you get it on sale.

Does SNOO ever go on sale?

I’ve seen sales of 40% off and 30% off depending on the time of year. However, it’s still a huge chunk of change to buy one.

I’m also not sure how frequently they run these sales, but I’d definitely keep my eye out before buying one at full price. You can sign up for their newsletter to be the first to know about any promotions.

Luckily, the great people at Happiest Baby realized that this price makes the item much less accessible for many would-be customers. So they came up with another option. Rather than give out more frequent SNOO bassinet deals or discount codes, they created a SNOO rental option.

How to use a SNOO bassinet rental to lower the cost

If you don’t have the cash to fork over for a $1,400 bassinet (because really, who does?) you can choose the option to rent monthly. The monthly rental is about $129, which boils down to $4.25 per day. 

While I couldn’t afford a full-time night nurse, if I could have paid less than $5 per day for my first to sleep longer I would have done it hands down.

Sleep can be priceless. I know that $129 per month still isn’t cheap. It’s also out of range for a lot of people, but it’s a huge step up from an upfront cost of $1395. You also have to think about what you’re getting for that cost. For me, extra sleep is worth cutting out the Starbucks, or lunches out, etc. 

What’s included in the SNOO rental?

No SNOO rental review would be complete without telling you EXACTLY what you’re getting, so here’s the full breakdown. 

With a SNOO rental, you get the fully cleaned and sanitized SNOO smart sleeper bassinet. 

It also comes with new swaddles (size small, medium, and large), along with a sheet and new mattress. 

You can keep all those brand new soft goods that come with your rental. Unfortunately, they aren’t really usable outside the SNOO, but at least you know yours are fresh.

You control the value and expense with the option to return the SNOO after a one-month minimum period. If your baby is ready to transition to the crib earlier than six months, you can return the SNOO and forego the extra cost. 

Are you ready? Order your SNOO rental now!

Who benefits most from using the SNOO smart sleeper bassinet?

Everyone. No seriously, the SNOO is amazing. To be fair, we’ve been using it since about day 4 or 5 – right after our daughter went through an insane growth spurt when we came home from the hospital. Those first few nights we were literally up ALL NIGHT. No two-hour stretches of sleep. Just near-constant nursing and an inability to put the baby down. We started using the SNOO as she exited the growth spurt, so I don’t have a direct comparison of the SNOO vs. Pack N Play today. Based on our experience, it’s been worth every penny. More on that to come. BUT, if you happen to be in an even more challenging sleep situation, this bassinet is definitely for you.

If you’re dealing with sleep issues, or the dreaded four-month sleep regression this could be the answer you’re looking for. Based on the amount of sleep (or lack thereof) during the early months, I’d suggest you get the SNOO earlier. However, if you were blessed with a sleeping baby early on and have now had a huge sleep setback – it might be a good time to get on the SNOO wagon. 

is a snoo worth the cost? read our honest rental review

Who is the SNOO NOT for?

If you have a baby that sleeps like a rock and easily goes for four-hour stretches within a couple of weeks home from the hospital, you might not need a SNOO. This is pretty unlikely, but I don’t believe in buying things you don’t need. If you want to hold off and see how your baby sleeps, by all means, go ahead. 

It’s important to note that by 2 months, babies have adjusted to their sleeping environments for the most part, so getting them to adjust to SNOO when they’re in the middle of a sleep regression won’t be easy.

snoo bassinet rental review, is it worth the cost?

How much space does the SNOO take up?

Do you have space for a full-size bassinet in your home or apartment? I’m guessing most people (even those living in tiny apartments) can find the space for this bassinet. Especially if you will eventually have a crib. 

However, I’d be remiss not to call out that this is a sturdy product (~38lbs.) and it’s 30” long. It’s not as small as some of the bedside bassinets you can buy.

Dimensions from the website:  30” L × 16” W × 32” H. 

If you don’t have space in your room or separate sleeping space for the baby that can accommodate a bassinet this size by an outlet, you’ll be in a bit of a pickle. 

Our experience with the SNOO bassinet: pros/cons, caveats, and everything else you wanted to know

Let’s get down to the nitty gritty. 

Would I recommend a SNOO? Absolutely. 

Was it a magic sleep machine that gave us 7-9 hours of uninterrupted sleep consistently? Nope. 

As part of my quest to truly find the best products to recommend to my visitors, we used both a regular pack n play and the SNOO during our baby’s first week home. I know there are some parents who get those freakishly good sleepers, and I didn’t want to recommend something that costs over $100 a month if my baby was just going to go ahead and sleep in a $100 pack n play (PNP) from day one.  

So, in service to the cause, we used both products. And as of the time I’m writing this (our baby is four weeks old), the SNOO is definitely worth the price. Her sleep stretches in the Pack N Play were definitely shorter than the SNOO. 

If we put her down in the PNP she has to be totally out. We can put her down in the SNOO and if she’s only lightly asleep she will still go down due to the extra soothing and motion of the bassinet.

Night wakeups and soothing

There were definitely times that our daughter woke up in the middle of the night and we were able to turn up the SNOO to soothe her back to sleep without getting out of bed. We used this mainly if she woke up after one sleep cycle, or 30 minutes to an hour after being put down. This felt like magic during the newborn days of wakeups every 45 minutes. 

After about a month with our SNOO our baby was waking up every 2-4 hours to eat. After about two months, she was able to go back to sleep quickly and only woke for a few minutes to eat a few times a night. 

Part of this may have been our fault since I was feeding her every time I heard her wake up. I’ll take full responsibility for the fact that I didn’t let SNOO “work” when I probably should have. If she’d been asleep for 2-3 hours, I got up and fed her. 

We essentially used the SNOO’s soothing to get her back to sleep after she’d already been fed and changed, versus letting it soothe her at first to see if she could go back down without us.

Our transition from SNOO to the crib

Our transition out of SNOO was still a transition. It wasn’t smooth, but that was mainly due to the fact that she still wasn’t sleeping with her arms out at six months. As I mentioned before, we were stuck in the double swaddle, and just decided to wait to transition cold-turkey out since it had been so long.

We did end up using the Taking Cara Babies ABC’s of Sleep Sleep Training Method after transitioning out of the SNOO, and I didn’t feel good about it. Especially since we had to do it twice. And then discovered a tongue and lip tie at seven months. 

We went through sleep training 2.5 times due to a food allergy and aforementioned ties. At 9 months our daughter is still only going 6-8 hours without eating after a dream feed in her crib, if that tells you anything about her sleep habits. However, she’s now sleeping for 11-13 hours a night with one to two feeds. 

Our recommendations around SNOO

Let SNOO work. I think a lot of our challenges came from the fact that we jumped up to “assist” as soon as we heard our baby. 

Don’t get stuck in the double swaddle for too long. If your baby is busting out of it at two months, let their arms out. Yes, you might have a couple of bad nights, but it’s better than being unable to leave your SNOO at five months. 

Continue to encourage movement. Our baby still doesn’t love rolling, even though we practiced tummy time every day. She can now crawl, but rolling is a challenge. I don’t think this is because of the SNOO, but they are confined for a long period of time. Just make sure they get moving while they’re awake. 

Take advantage of the awesomeness and let SNOO sleep train for you. I also didn’t put my baby down “drowsy but awake” nearly often enough. We walked and shushed her to sleep, which defeated half the purpose of a SNOO. It would also have made our crib transition a lot easier as well. 

How much sleep will you actually get with SNOO?

I’m not going to sugarcoat this one either. We never got 7-9 hours without feeding. There were a few stretches at a few months old, but they never stuck. We probably *did* get the extra 1-2 hours per night they claim, but I still think the SNOO was worth it.

After about a month we were getting 2-4 hour stretches until she was six months old, with a few longer stretches baked in. Per below, a lot of this could have been due to other factors. 

I’ll put in my disclaimers: 

  • We fed our daughter every time she woke up for the first few months. I never really tried to see if the SNOO would shush her back to sleep without a feeding. This likely created really bad habits. 
  • We had an undiagnosed tongue (and lip) tie that didn’t get addressed until seven months. It was possible our little lady actually needed to eat every few hours if she wasn’t able to get enough on her own with the ties
  • Our daughter was a good sleeper and wanted to sleep, but she also wanted to eat. After those first couple of months, she went right back to sleep after eating. 

For us, yes, the SNOO was absolutely worth it, even though she didn’t sleep through the night without feeding until after we weaned to the crib. I’m updating this post when our daughter is nine months, and she’s still only going 6-8 hours after a dream feed. SNOO helped us through one of the trickiest phases of infancy and I’d absolutely recommend it to anyone having a new baby who wants more sleep.

Are you ready to get your SNOO now? Click the button below.

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SNOO Smart Sleeper Bassinet

Related: The ultimate pre-baby checklist: 30+ things you need to do before baby arrives

 Is the SNOO bassinet worth it? Our honest review.

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