When you are having a baby, there are many things that you need to buy and lots that you want to buy because everything is so darn cute. When it comes to your child’s safety and purchasing baby equipment, one of the main things you absolutely must have is a car seat. Choosing a seat for your child and the needs you have, as well as installing the car seat is something that takes some research and time. Therefore, choosing the right car seat is a really important decision, and one that you want to make before you start having contractions. To help you navigate this often overwhelming situation, here are a few tips of advice.
First, you need to decide which style of car seat you want. You can either choose an infant car seat that snaps into place and can be transferred to a stroller or you can get a car seat that is stationary and remains in your car all the time (also known as a convertible car seat). The advantages to a snap-in car seat are that you can take it out and carry your baby without waking him (we all know that we never like to wake our sleeping babies), and that you can get a second base to install in another car for convenience. However, some disadvantages are that the car seat can be cumbersome to carry, and once your infant is larger you have to buy a convertible car seat anyway. Car seats are quite expensive, so if money is really tight, this is definitely a factor to consider.
The next feature to consider is the car seat’s safety rating. When making a decision that is this important, putting in the time to do some extra research is well worth it. Be sure to check on whether your car seat has been crash safety tested. You can do this by looking at independent companies that rate car seats, such as Consumer Reports or NHTSA.gov, to find the safest car seat. Be very cautious if you buy or inherit a used car seat. Check to make sure it has never been in a car accident, and that it is not expired or recalled.
Finally, on a less serious note, choose the look you want. Consider whether you might have another child (you might want to reconsider the hot pink motif for your baby girl because you might not have a boy next). There are lots of trendy designs out there so pick something you can live with for the next several years. Remember that over the years, this car seat will be pooped in, spilled on, and puked on (just keeping it real), so I always opted for a darker color.
Whatever car seat you choose, be sure to have it installed properly. With a bit of research and some comparison shopping, you will find just the right one to keep your precious baby safe and stylish.
Meet The Bella Behind the Blog: Kristen Farley is a mother of three and a domestic goddess. She is a former teacher who enjoys spending lots of time with her kids, healthy eating, volunteering at school, and mommy blogging for the masses.