Hey, quick note for all of you who are asking yourselves, “is the snoo worth it?” I’ve updated this post for 2023. Now that both of my babies are in cribs/beds, I wanted to share a little update about how they’re sleeping after using the SNOO for their first 6 months of life…
Is the SNOO worth it? A 2023 update:
Go ahead and read my thoughts in the rest of the blog post below, please! I think they’ll be really helpful to you as you’re considering whether a snoo is a good choice for your family. But I wanted to start this with a brief update. My two boys both used the snoo for the first 6(ish) months of their lives, and so I used the snoo for sleep training.
As I’m writing this, my boys are 16-months-old and 3-years-old. THEY ARE BOTH FANTASTIC SLEEPERS.
The 16-month-old sleeps in a crib, and he clocks in 13 hours of sleep every night, completely uninterrupted. He also naps for 2 hours in the afternoon. I don’t think I’m any sort of sleep training ninja AT ALL. I fully credit the Snoo to his magical sleeping skills, and if I could go back and buy it again, I would. Sure, he wakes up occasionally, just like any other human on the planet. But he knows how to self-soothe and he’s back asleep again within 5 minutes.
The 3-year-old is also a rockstar sleeper. He sleeps 12 hours every night, and once he’s out, he’s out! He goes to bed at 7 pm without any complications, and he wakes up as soon as his Hatch sleep light tells him he can come out of his room (7:15 am.)
The first time I heard of the SNOO was when I was 8 months pregnant. I brought a homemade meal to a friend who had just given birth to her baby. I asked her the age-old question, “how’s the sleep? Is it as bad as everyone says?” Her response: “not too bad, actually. The SNOO really helps.” She then went on to tell me about this robotic bassinet that detects when the baby is upset and rocks her back to sleep. I asked her how much it costs. “Uh, $1500 plus tax.” I kinda laughed, decided that I would will my baby into being a good sleeper, and put it out of my mind. Seriously….this thing costs more than $1600…is it worth it? I doubted it. Is the Snoo worth it? That’s a LOT of money!
Fast forward 5 weeks. I had given birth and brought Milo home from the hospital, and Nate and I were one week into our parenting journey and deathly tired. Turns out that when experts say that newborns sleep in 2-3 hour stretches, you have to deduct the time spent feeding, changing, shushing, and swaddling the baby. We were surviving on 45-minute stretches of sleep.
Also see: Postpartum Q&A
I told Nate about the SNOO, we went on Craigslist and found one for sale in “like new” condition for $1,200 in San Antonio (about two hours south of where we live.) I contacted the seller, who told me someone else wanted it but it was first come, first serve. “Go NOW!” I told Nate. Armed with my list of questions and specs to check over, he fought through traffic on I-35 to go retrieve the SNOO. (Side note: I later found out that you can rent a Snoo for a few dollars a day, and they even deliver it based on your due date so you can be prepared ahead of time without paying rent before the baby arrives. I wish we had just done that! Don’t do what we did, haha! It was so stressful to scramble to find one, and I looking back I wish we had just rented ahead of time. They make it super easy, but I was dragging my feet and made our lives harder than they had to be.)
Nate brought it home, set it up, and it turned out that the WIFI connection wasn’t working and we couldn’t control it with our app. (UGH. Haha, again, just rent one ahead of time!) He contacted the Happiest Baby company, and we got super lucky because it was still under warranty. We returned that one and were able to get a SNOO delivered to us and set up a few (sleepless) days later. And we finally got to try it out this hyped bassinet.
Is The Snoo Worth It?
The result? Instant bliss. Milo started sleeping in longer stretches right away, and by 8 weeks he gave us his first 8-hour stretch of sleep. At around 4 months he was sleeping 12 hours through the night. Is the SNOO worth it? Hells to the yes. I would have told you that after the first night, but now, 5 months later, I can give you a much more thorough review.
What is the SNOO?
It’s an app-controlled bassinet that was launched in 2016. It’s chic and pretty, and it mimics the womb-like sensations that a baby craves in the first three months of his life. The SNOO was developed by Dr. Harvey Karp, the author of The Happiest Baby on the Block. (An excellent read if you’re about to have a baby!) In this book, Dr. Karp explains that all babies are born 3 months early (hence the term 4th trimester), and they crave the womb-like sensations that they left behind. The SNOO provides those by swaddling, shushing, and swinging the baby. The SNOO company has lots more info on it here.
How does the Snoo work?
The SNOO gently rocks your baby and plays white noise through speakers in the bassinet. The motion and sound continue all night. If your baby stirs in the middle of the night (and he will! All babies – and adults – wake a few times per night and have to eventually learn to soothe themselves back to sleep), the SNOO will sense your baby’s movement and increase the rocking and the volume. Ideally, your baby will fall back to sleep, and the SNOO will gradually decrease the rocking and volume.
What if my baby keeps crying?
Of course, the SNOO isn’t actually a replacement for a human being, so if Milo was every hungry or truly upset and needed his mama, the SNOO would shut off. It takes a couple minutes and goes through 4 levels of increasing motion and sound, but if your baby still crying, the SNOO will shut off and alert you that your little one needs you.
Is the Snoo safe?
100%. It’s actually ranked the safest sleeping device on the market right now, and that’s because the zip-up swaddle (you can see them here) hooks into the sides of the bassinet, preventing your baby from rolling over onto his side or stomach.
How much sleep do you actually get with the SNOO versus without it?
Since we were late to the game and didn’t get our SNOO until Milo was a couple weeks old, I can confidently tell you that it made a huge difference in the amount of sleep we got! Now, he was still a newborn and slept like one, but we went from getting 45-60 minute stretches of sleep to getting 2-3 hour stretches. That’s a BIG difference when you’re severely sleep deprived. His sleep gradually increased, and he was sleeping in 7-hour stretches at the end of his second month, and 12-hour stretches at 4 months.
How many SNOO sleep sacks did you get?
We have two sets of these SNOO sleep sacks (the 3-pack includes a small, medium, and large) and two sets of fitted SNOO sheets (because #laundry). We went through all three sizes before weaning him out of the SNOO. We also got these SNOO leg lifters (they’re about $20.) They’re designed to lift one side of the SNOO so it’s on a slight incline in case your baby has reflux or a stuffy nose, but Milo never dealt with those things as an infant, so we didn’t really use the leg lifters.
Talk to me about weaning…was its hard?
It wasn’t a problem for us. Around three months old, Milo figured out how to pull his arms out of the swaddle, so we started putting him to bed with his arms out of the swaddle. There are little snaps that open up to allow for this. We went on an International trip when he was four months old, and we really missed the SNOO. He didn’t sleep well without it! Based on that, I was worried that he had become “addicted” to the SNOO and we had created a sleep monster, but this article told me that it’s impossible for a baby to become addicted to the SNOO. So we just toggled the app to the “weaning” mode, which uses sound but no motion, and then a few weeks later we transitioned him to his crib. He’s been sleeping like a champ ever since! I know that when I was asking myself “is the SNOO worth it” I was also thinking of long-term benefits, and now I can confidently tell my friends that this magical basinet helped Milo become an expert sleeper.
Should I buy or rent the SNOO?
Every baby is different, and I don’t know how yours will respond to the SNOO. I recommend renting it at first (it’s a few dollars a day) to see if it helps you. If you love it and think you’ll want to use it for 5-6 months, you can buy one and then either save it for your next baby, or pass it along to a friend who has a baby after you (which is what we’ll probably do.) I encourage you to read all the info about renting a SNOO on their website to make sure you’re fully educated. It’s a big investment – I get it!
How much does it cost to rent the SNOO?
For 2023, it costs $159/month (about $5.30/day) to rent a SNOO. They also offer their “newborn special” which is $159/month for months 1-4, and then $49/month for months 5-6. Plus you get two free sleep sacks, a mattress, and an organic cotton sheet. AMAZING! (We used our SNOO for about 5.5 months.)
If you’re interested in the SNOO but you don’t have $1600 to put down on buying a new one, this rental program is by far the best and most cost-effective option. You can pay monthly, send it back when you’re finished, and you get a free 30 day money-back guarantee.
Is the SNOO worth it?
In our case, 100% yes. I wholeheartedly recommend giving it a try as a rental. When you’re sleep deprived, you will happily pay 5 bucks a day for a better sleeping baby. Just think about it: sleep (or lake thereof) affects literally every part of our waking hours. Plus, it helped us sleep train Milo in a safe, easy way. He’s such a great sleeper! We bought ours a few weeks after we got home from the hospital, but if I could do it again, I would have already had it ordered ahead of time. Shipping is free, and you can have it delivered based on your due date so you’re not paying to rent it when you don’t need it. Click here to reserve your SNOO based on your due date.
What about the new Lola Convertible Crib? Is it good?
The Happiest Baby launched a convertible crib that transforms from a regular baby crib into a toddler day bed. It’s chic and clean and matches the midcentury design of the SNOO. They offer it in two color options: NATURAL, a light wood color, and WHITE.
The pros: it’s eco-friendly, made from sustainably farmed New Zealand pine. You don’t have to worry about your crib emitting cancer-producing fumes on your baby. The mattress adjusts to four different heights (so you can lower it as your little one starts sitting, then standing, then walking, delaying the inevitable climb-out-of-the-crib moment) and it’s very easy to put together.
The cons: it’s slightly more expensive than similar options at, say, Crate and Barrel Kids or Pottery Barn Kids. Most cribs on the market (that are from reputable brands) are made from eco-friendly materials, convert into toddler beds, and offer multiple mattress heights. So the Lola Convertible Crib isn’t quite as much of a game changer as that incredible SNOO!
Full disclosure: I haven’t purchased a Lola Convertible Crib personally. I have a friend here in Austin who has one, and I asked her to share her thoughts on this crib. So there ya go!
If you’re someone who is asking “is the SNOO worth it” then you might have more questions for me. Feel free to leave a comment, and I’ll respond with my honest opinion!
Bottom line: is the SNOO worth it?
For me, it’s a wholehearted “YES!” Every baby is different, so I can’t answer this question for you. But the SNOO provided me with a lot more sleep, it helped my baby become an excellent sleeper all the way into his toddler years (he’s almost two-years-old now and still sleeps and naps like a champ), and it elimintated the need for us to do any sleep training. My baby just naturally learned how to sleep 12 hours/night by 4.5 months.
If you’re not sure if the SNOO is the right choice for you, just rent it for a month! It’s only $139 and it’s jus ta one-month commitment. And if you’re fully ready to commit now, you can buy it and have it reserved to ship at your due date. They have a 30-day money back guarantee for purchases, so you can breathe easy.