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The Best Baby Play Mats for Sensory Play and Development

Any parent with a little one (or little ones) understands firsthand how important a play mat can be. They’re great not only for sensory play and development, but they also help to keep your little one occupied, at least for a little while. Here are some great play mat options to keep your baby learning and entertained.

Purchasing Baby Play Mats

Here are the important points to consider:

  • Activity Level: All babies require different levels of activity as they grow and develop. Choose a mat that can grow with them and aid in their development by encouraging different motions, from swatting to grabbing to sitting to full-blown interacting.
  • Waterproof: This may not be the most important buying option, but if your baby is prone to spit-up (like so many of them are), a waterproof mat will be much more convenient for cleaning.
  • Washable: For the same reason above, choosing a mat that is washable in the event of a spit-up, a spilled snack or drink, or a diaper blowout can make sure your baby’s favorite play area is always clean and germ-free
  • Foldable/Portable: Your baby goes with you just about everywhere, so why shouldn’t their play mat do the same to keep them busy even on the go?

Best Overall: FisherPrice Delux Kick and Play Piana Gym

This machine-washable, large, and colorful playmat has a repositionable toy bar equipped with five activity toys to suit your baby’s play needs and entertain them from tummy time to sitting and interacting. This mat also allows playtime to continue with a removable light-up piano that your baby can take with them.

This mat offers three levels to grow and evolve with your baby. They can begin to sense with lights, sounds, and up to 20 minutes of continuous playful music to stimulate and engage them. As they grow, they can discover animals and their sounds as well as short instrument tunes. Finally, they can learn to enjoy and explore with playful songs and phrases that introduce them to colors, shapes, and numbers.

Best Overall

Fisher Price Baby Gift Set Deluxe Kick & Play Piano Gym & Maracas, Playmat & Musical Toy with Smart Stages Learning Content plus 2 Rattles (Amazon Exclusive)

Machine-washable with stages to grow with your baby, this playmat will help them grow and develop sensory play skills.

Best Waterproof: Regalo Sensory & Learning Play Mat

Lightweight and portable, this play mat is perfect for in the home or even outdoors to protect little hands and feet from hard and rough surfaces. It easily folds in seconds to be stored or transported and is reversible with alphabet characters on one side and a chevron pattern on the other. Made of soft waterproof foam to easily wipe clean with a wet cloth, it will always be ready for your little one to enjoy. It also comes with a bag and a convenient carry strap.

Best Waterproof

Regalo Sensory & Learning My Play Mat, Foldable & Reversable, Waterproof, Bonus Kit, Includes Travel Case with Carry Strap, Grey, Extra Large

Foldable and reversible, this play mat is perfect for protecting little hands and feet from uncomfortable surfaces and can be easily transported.

Best for Stage Growth: Lovevery Store The Play Gym

This playmat is good for a whole year of play to help babies develop from babbling to teething to learning to focus. Sustainably sourced wooden legs offer stability, and every finish is water-based and nontoxic. This playmat can be set up in 2 minutes and taken down in the same amount of time to easily place wherever and whenever you want it. The playmat and the cotton teether are both machine washable.

This mat is designed to promote cognitive, visual, and motor development and offers five development zones to keep babies interested and learning. It has a reveal-or-conceal feature to eliminate overstimulation. Their favorite toys can also be removed to take with them when you leave.

Best for Stage Growth

The Play Gym by Lovevery | Stage-Based Developmental Activity Gym & Play Mat for Baby to Toddler, 1 Count (Pack of 1)

With five sensory development zones, removable toys, and an easy setup, this playmat will be ready to give your baby an entire year's worth of playtime and learning.

Best Cotton: teytoy Baby Cotton Play Mat

This mat is made of super soft fabric material that is BPA-free and nontoxic. It offers a large and comfortable plush surface to transform any area into a soft and safe baby play space for crawling, sitting, tummy time, or any other play. It is fitted with soft cotton and offers a nonslip bottom and sewn edges for a stable location. This mat is also easy to fold and can be either machine- or hand-washed. It has a brightly colored design with an A-Z alphabet, animals, and other designs to keep your baby safe and curious during playtime.

Best Cotton

teytoy Baby Cotton Play Mat, Playmat Baby Crawling Mat for Floor Baby Mat Large Super Soft Extra Thick (0.6cm), Plush Surface Foldable Non-Slip Non-Toxic

Washable and brightly colored, this soft and large play mat can transform any space into a safe area for baby to play.

Alesha Billie Alesha Billie
Alesha Billie is a momma to three kiddos (unless we count the furry ones) who has been writing and researching for over 15 years. After a start as a romance ghostwriter, she's written countless full-length novels in addition to articles, blog posts, advertorials, memoirs, and eBooks. Read Full Bio »
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