Will a Crib Mattress Fit in a Pack n’ Play?

Pack n’ Plays have become more and more popular in recent years, and these handy inventions have been a godsend to many parents. A Pack n’ Play provides a safe space for your child to play and sleep when you’re on the move, taking the stress off of mom and dad and keeping little ones happy and content.

However, many people feel that the Pack n’ Play mattress is too hard and uncomfortable for their babies and toddlers. If this is you, you might have considered putting a crib mattress in there to make it a more cozy and sleep-inducing environment.

But will a crib mattress fit properly inside a Pack n’ Play, and do they pose a danger? In this post, we’ll answer these questions and more, so you can make sure your little ones are comfortable, well-rested, and, most importantly, safe.

What is a Pack n’ Play?

What is a Pack n' Play

Before we dive into the details, let me first explain what a “Pack ‘n Play” actually is.

The term was originally invented by the international baby care company Graco. But since their invention went mainstream, it’s become a universal name to describe a lightweight, portable, and collapsible sleeper and a playpen that can be used for infants and toddlers alike.

Pack ‘n Plays are great for use in the home as well as on the move while visiting friends and family or staying in hotels. You can even use them when you’re camping! And the best part about them is that they’re quick to assemble and provide an immediate safe space for your bundle of joy.

It is important to note that Most Pack n’ Plays, regardless of the brand or model, have a firm pad base rather than a mattress. This pad is much less cushioned than an average mattress, and most of them feel relatively hard. 

So, while these Pack n’ Play pads are perfect for playing, in most cases, they’re not exactly ideal for sleeping.

Can I Use a Different Mattress in a Pack n’ Play?

Naturally, many parents wonder if they can add a new mattress to increase the comfort level in their little one’s Pack n’ Play and make it a more snuggly and soft environment.

Yes, you can install a different mattress in a Pack n’ Play, but of course, there are some safety concerns you have to consider first.

It’s essential to make sure that the mattress is the right size and shape to fit safely inside. There should be no gaps around the sides of the mattress, as this increases the risk of suffocation or your baby becoming stuck. Any gap bigger than the width of your finger poses a danger to infants.

Likewise, the mattress may be too big for the Pack n’ Play. This can cause an undulating, uneven surface, which is also a hazard to little ones.

So, to choose the appropriate mattress for a Pack n’ Play, you will first need to measure the base’s dimensions carefully to ensure you find something with a perfect fit.

Will a Crib Mattress Fit in a Pack n’ Play?

Will a Crib Mattress Fit in a Pack n' Play

Placing a crib mattress inside a Pack n’ Play is far from ideal. In fact, in most cases, it can be downright unsafe.

That’s because the majority of crib mattresses won’t fit properly. The standard dimensions of a crib mattress are 52″x 28″ inches. However, most Pack n’ Play pads measure much smaller, around 38″ x 26″ inches.

It’s also important to consider how soft or firm the mattress is. Younger infants need a firmer mattress to help reduce the chance of SIDS. However, some crib mattresses are designed for older children and may be too soft, posing a significant safety risk.

How to Find The Right Mattress For a Pack n’ Play?

How to Find the Right Mattress for a Pack n' Play

Although most crib mattresses won’t be safe to use in a Pack n’ Play, there are still plenty of other options out there.

The best course of action is to contact the manufacturer of your Pack n’ Play and see if they stock a tailor-made mattress. Many manufacturers have developed matching mattresses that are designed to fit perfectly, removing any safety concerns and eliminating the need for measuring.

Failing that, you can measure the Pack n’ Play yourself and find a suitable mattress with the perfect dimensions.

If you go down this route, remember to consider the following:

  • Gaps: Any gaps should be less than the width of your finger; otherwise, they pose a danger of SIDS.
  • Firmness: Younger babies need a firmer mattress, so make sure whatever option you choose is suitable for your little one’s age group.
  • Cleanability: Many mattresses come with an easy-to-clean removable mattress protector or feature a wipe-clean finish. This is essential as, sooner or later, bacteria will start to accumulate. So, try to find a low-maintenance option that will be safe and healthy for your child, and keep the cleanup process to a minimum.


Pack n’ Plays are a fantastic invention, and they’ve made parents’ lives so much easier. But they’re also not the most comfortable option when it comes to your baby’s sleep.

However, before you put a different mattress into a Pack n’ Play, be sure it’s safe to use. Most crib mattresses aren’t suitable due to their size. However, there are plenty of other options that fit like a glove, with no gaps, keeping your baby safe and comfortable day and night. If you’re looking for a new mattress for your Pack n’ Play, be sure to check out our in-depth guide to Pack n’ Play mattresses, so you can find the best one for your needs.

Sarah Wagner

I'm Sarah Wagner, and I founded Sweet Island Dreams in 2022. It's a blog dedicated to helping people mental vacation virtually anytime they want. By providing information about the best sleep of your life, I help people drift away to paradise without ever having to leave their bed!