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From tummy time through those first steps and beyond, a baby play mat offers a soft, cushy space for your little one to grow and play. Need to take a shower? No problem. Just drag it into the bathroom. Time to cook dinner? Slide it into the kitchen.
Baby mats are a staple in every new parents’ home—and with their bright, primary colors and loud designs, they’re also almost impossible to take your eyes off of.
Do I need a baby play mat?
Honestly, many Motherly editors will say it’s one of the most used pieces of baby gear we’ve owned. As any seasoned mama will tell you, it’s not just your baby that spends a lot of time playing on the floor. We do too! And having a cushy place to spend those hours makes a big difference. They’re also one investment that sticks around for quite some time. We’ve played cars, “gymnastics,” and blocks with our toddlers on them. We’ve dragged them into the yard for picnics. We’ve even handed one or two down to the family pup.
So, let’s put it this way. You don’t need an unattractive one. There are so many beautiful modern baby play mats that complement your style instead of clashing with it. (And no, not just sad beige options either!)
Look no further, mamas; we’ve rounded up our 16 swoon-worthy favorite kids’ play mats that you won’t want to roll up the second your little one is done using it. From foam play mats to padded play mats we’ve rounded up some of the best-looking gear on the market.
Check out our favorite baby play mats and kids play mats below!
A version of this story was published October 8, 2021. It has been updated.