How Do I Choose the Best Car Seat Blanket?

Norma Jean Howland

If you are shopping for a car seat blanket, you can choose one designed specifically for a car seat or purchase a regular baby blanket. A custom car seat blanket usually comes in either a clover leaf shape or pod style. For newborns, the clover leaf shape is popular because it protects the car seat, has openings for restraints, and allows you to bundle the baby after he is strapped in. If you have an older baby or toddler, you may want a pod style blanket, which slips over the body, independent of the car seat, allowing for more freedom of movement. You may also decide to use a regular baby blanket that can simply be tucked around your child while traveling.

A warm, fleece blanket may be the preferred car seat blanket during winter.
A warm, fleece blanket may be the preferred car seat blanket during winter.

A customized car seat blanket may be easier for you to use because it stays in the car seat between trips. Since this blanket can be taken out for laundering, it also has the advantage of helping extend the life of your car seat. This clover shaped blanket fits most car seats, with openings in the center to accommodate three and five point harnesses. Once the baby is strapped in, the different parts of the blanket are wrapped around him, swaddle style, with an attached tie to secure them. You may want to check the instructions for your car seat to make sure the blanket doesn’t interfere with the restraint system or compromise your child’s safety.

Pod style blankets are good for toddlers.
Pod style blankets are good for toddlers.

Although the pod style car seat blanket can be used for infants, it may be a good choice for a toddler, since it allows for leg movement. This blanket is similar to a sleeping bag and is designed to prevent the loss of body heat. These blankets are usually made from fleece material and slip over the lower part of the body after the child is strapped in. The blankets come in different sizes and can be tucked in at waist level or wrapped around the shoulders. There are some advantages to using such a blanket for long trips, as you may be able to carry your sleeping baby inside, keeping him wrapped in the blanket, without disturbing him.

Baby blankets come in different styles and sizes, from elaborate hand knitted patterns to brightly colored patchwork quilts. Almost any of these can be used for a car seat, which may be necessary if your child is attached to a particular blanket. You can also alternate blankets for different kinds of weather. For warmer months, you may want a lightweight material like cotton but need a warmer, fleece blanket, in the wintertime.

Some car seat blankets are specially designed for use with baby car seats.
Some car seat blankets are specially designed for use with baby car seats.

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Discussion Comments


With any baby blanket one of the biggest concerns is washability. Anyone who has spent any time around a baby knows that they are very dirty and very messy. There is the chance that pee, poop and vomit could all end up on the blanket.

So make sure that the blanket can be easily washed and will retain its color and softness even after multiple trips through the machine.

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