Up until I became a mother, celebrities never really influenced anything I did. However, when I recently gave birth to my newborn baby girl, I suddenly became interested in learning what these "fancy folks" used to care for their tiny human(s). Supermodel and new mom, Gigi Hadid is a prime example; through her Instagram stories, she has been sharing what products she’s been using to care for her baby girl, Khai.
One of her highly recommended products was a Mamaroo4 infant swing. She noted that “it’s great entertainment while mamma gets something done!” This further piqued my interest because as a freelance writer, I knew that my maternity leave could not be full-time (alas, I have bills to pay!). I wondered, could the Mamaroo free up my hands, care for my baby for a stretch of time, thereby enabling me to do things like answer emails and do laundry?
What is Mamaroo?
Since its debut in 2010, the Mamaroo has garnered a strong presence within the parenting community because it has a reputation for replicating the natural motions that a parent or caregiver uses to soothe a baby; this includes bouncing, swaying side to side, and swinging. The Mamaroo features five unique motions—car ride, kangaroo, tree swing, rockabye, wave—and five speed options so your tiny tot can enjoy up to 25 different soothing combinations.
It also has four built-in sounds, can be controlled via your smartphone through their app, and connects with any MP3 device. The seat also features an adjustable recline so your baby can be upright or lying down. Lastly, the unit includes an overhead toy mobile and three interactive balls with distinctive features: crinkle, rattle, and reflective mirror.
How much does the Mamaroo cost?
The retail price of a Mamaroo4 infant seat starts at $239.99, when ordered through the 4moms website. I ordered mine with a multi-plush fabric, which brought the cost to $249.99, not including shipping.
What I liked about the Mamaroo
It’s a breeze to set up and is compact
According to my not-so-handyman hubby (his description, not mine), the Mamaroo was extremely straightforward and easy to set up. Within 15 minutes of opening the packaging, everything was done and ready for my baby to enjoy. Better still, it has a small footprint, measuring 19.5 inches long x 25.5 inches wide x 33 inches tall, so it takes up a tiny amount of space in a home, making it ideal for small space apartment dwellers.
With its open design, there are no obstructed views and I can always spot my baby inside the Mamaroo from any angle—whether I’m on the couch or cooking at the kitchen stove. Moreover, my little one cannot roll over from her belly to her back yet, so when the unit’s in recline, I feel secure enough to leave her nestled in there for a nap under supervision.
When she’s in a more upright and seated position, I strap her into the plush harness with the safety buckles to secure her to the Mamaroo. Overall, I get so much peace of mind and can multitask better without worrying about her being safely contained.
My baby loves the Mamaroo for her nap times so I was relieved to discover how whisper quiet the unit was when in operation. I must note that while it does have a delicate mechanical whirl to it, my little one doesn’t mind because it actually sounds like white noise. Additionally, this sound is drowned out the second you turn on the built-in sounds.
It’s easy to clean
After my baby had an epic poop explosion, I thought it was game over for the Mamaroo. A good scrub with a washcloth, all natural cleaner, and a bit of elbow grease took baby’s "waste" out easily. For heavier soilings, the seat can be quickly removed and machine washed.
There’s an app for that
Another feature that my husband and I absolutely adored was the free downloadable app. The layout of the app is simple and clear: It features the same icons you have on the Mamaroo and you can adjust the levels of any of the sounds or motions with the touch of a button.
For those who need troubleshooting, the app connects you to product support as well as direct customer care contact. I haven’t needed to use these services so far but it’s nice to know such aid is conveniently located all in one app.
What I didn’t like about the Mamaroo
Safety straps look a little cheap and are coarse feeling
The safety straps feel slightly flimsy, but they worked fine and it wasn’t overly concerning at this stage since our baby cannot wriggle out or unfasten the clips herself.
The infant adaptor costs extra
While 4moms does offer an infant adaptor, it’s not included with the initial purchase of the Mamaroo. As a mom of a small newborn—she weighed just over 5 pounds—I wish that it had been included with the initial purchase of the unit. As a first time parent, the last thing you want to be worried about is not having something fit your child, and scrambling to order something is not ideal for exhausted, stressed-out new parents.
The built-in sounds are rudimentary
The sounds that come with the Mamaroo become static-y, crackle, and get distorted if the volume is set any higher than 3 (the maximum is 5). For adults, it’s a very off-putting noise—a bit like nails on a chalkboard—but my little one didn’t seem to mind as she slumbered away, regardless of how quiet or loud the sounds were.
It’s not cheap
At $239.99—not including taxes, shipping fees, and potential add-ons—with all the ‘must-have’ baby items on your endless prep list, this doesn’t need to be one of them. However, it can most certainly make your life easier and less stressful if your budget allows for one.
Should you buy a Mamaroo?
My husband and I are in agreement that if presented with the option again, we’d absolutely get the Mamaroo. My little one is now 5 months old and doesn't really use it as much, but from 0 to 3 months, it was our saving grace. The unit gave us a much needed breather and a chance to reset our worrisome baby-brains.
It’s worth noting, however, that some parents told me that their babies absolutely hated the Mamaroo. While I certainly didn’t have that experience, it may be worth borrowing one from a friend or a relative before buying one yourself—especially if you’re on a tight budget.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.