Sifting through baby products online — such as, say, the very best high chairs on the market today — can be as challenging as trying to convince your picky baby to gobble up all of her pureed spinach. But, just as introducing leafy greens into a baby’s diet is vital for her growth, finding the right high chair is critical for childhood development, early childhood specialist Janice M. Robinson-Celeste tells SheKnows.
“Having a good high chair in the home is mostly for safety,” Robinson-Celeste, founder and editor-in-chief of Successful Black Parenting, explains. “A high chair helps with autonomy and independence,” she continues. “Don’t think of a high chair as solely for eating. It can be used as a safe place for keeping your child busy while you cook his or her meal.”
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Finding the right high chair can also help make family dinnertime fun and enjoyable for parents and babies, as it helps create a sense of togetherness — according to registered dietician nutritionist, child feeding specialist, and lactation consultant Crystal Karges of Crystal Karges Nutrition.
“Creating a positive mealtime experience for our children is one of the most important things we’ll do as parents,” Karges tells SheKnows. “This starts with ensuring that they are comfortably and safely positioned so that kids can be successful at mealtimes. The benefits of a quality, safe high chair include improved positioning and good sitting dynamics to help your child eat better at mealtimes and overall enjoy the eating experience.”
Mealtimes can be stressful enough, especially if your child is a picky eater or hungry all the time. So how can parents know what to look for in a high chair to improve their child’s experience? Both Robinson-Celeste and Karges recommend looking for chairs with adjustable footrests and wide, removable trays.
Below, we’ve listed some of the best and safest high chairs available — to help you spend less time shopping and more time bonding with your little one.
Oribel Cocoon High Chair
The Cocoon high chair from Oribel not only looks modern and contemporary, but also has six height adjustments and three comfortable reclining positions that work for napping and feeding — plus it folds for easy storage. But the best part? There are no gross nooks or crannies that are impossible to clean; the waterproof EVA seat wipes down super easily, allowing for quick clean up, and the two-piece feeding tray can be attached to the back of the high chair with magnets when not in use. It also comes with a top insert that is dishwasher-safe.
Peg Pérego Siesta
The Italians are known for making beautiful products, right? Leather, luxury cars, glass and, yes, even high chairs. The Peg Pérego Siesta is a high-end high chair designed with style and function in mind. Not only does this high chair roll; it also has five reclining positions and nine height adjustment options to maximize child comfort. Because tiny hands can make huge messes, the Siesta comes with a dishwasher-safe tray liner and stain-resistant upholstery. That’s amoré.
Graco Blossom 6-in-1
Fact: Kids grow out of everything eventually. But that doesn’t mean you can’t slow that process down a bit. The Blossom 6-in-1 chair was designed to expand with kids from infancy to early youth with kids’ safety and comfort — and parents’ wallets — in mind. The chair features six adjustable heights and promises to easily convert from an infant high chair into a booster seat and a kids’ chair. Since the booster seat comes separately, parents can comfortably accommodate two children at different stages. Plus, the Amazon reviews are full of parents raving about how easy it is to clean (thanks to removable trays and washable seating) and wheel around.
Abiie Beyond Junior Y Chair
If you’ve ever looked at the cost of a high chair and said, “That chair better grow with my kid into adulthood,” look no further than the Abiie Beyond. This midcentury-modern-inspired wooden high chair, made from sustainable European beech wood and designed in Austin, TX, transforms into a dining chair that kids and adults of all ages (up to 250 pounds) can use. The cushions are removable, stain-resistant, and hand-washable and come in a variety of colors (olive green, blueberry, raspberry, cream, and black). Parents and caregivers can remove the tray and plastic tray liner for quick cleanups.
Stokke Tripp Trapp
Like the Abiie, the Stokke Tripp Trapp chair was designed for years of use by children and adults (up to 242 pounds). The high chair, which comes in a variety of fun colors, comes with a baby set that includes a seat and a five-point harness for children six months to three years old. Additionally, the seat and footrest are easy to adjust depending on your needs. Parents will, however, need to purchase the Tripp Trapp adjustable plastic tray and cushions separately.
Inglesina Fast Table Chair
The Inglesina Fast Table High Chair is an excellent option for parents who either don’t have space for a traditional high chair or who just want something easy to travel with. In addition to a travel bag and storage pocket, the chair comes with twist-tight couplings that screw onto tables up to 3.5 inches thick — and it seats babies and tots up to 37 pounds. Though the most exciting feature may be the removable, washable cover for cleaning those inevitable food messes.
The Fisher-Price SpaceSaver is a fantastic option for parents who want a portable high chair alternative but are wary of models that clip onto the table. This chair looks more like a booster and comes with straps that quickly, yet sturdily, connect to the back of most dining chairs.
Let’s face it: Not everyone has space (or the desire) to have a high chair out in the open at all times. Weighing in at 15 pounds, the Nook is simple to fold and transport without requiring a lot of time or strength. It’s also painless to clean thanks to its dishwasher-safe tray and wipeable cushions. Plus, you can plan on getting a lot of use out of the Nook since it accommodates kids up to 50 pounds.
OXO Tot Sprout
Despite being much newer to the market than some other models, the OXO Tot Sprout has a cult following thanks to its sleek design, longevity (it accommodates kids up to five years old or 60 pounds), and easy assembly. The cushions are also removable, providing parents with plenty of color options to switch things up. However, parents who own the Sprout warn that the tray is a bit more challenging to clean than other models and, as a result, it can collect mold if not correctly and regularly washed.
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