Boppy is officially recalling over 3 million newborn loungers after the products were recently tied to a string of infant deaths. An investigation by the Consumer Product Safety Commission earlier this month urged parents to stop using the products immediately after eight infant deaths were linked to the use of the loungers and nursing pillows for sleep.
All three models of the Boppy Newborn Lounger have been recalled: the Boppy Original Newborn Lounger, the Boppy Preferred Newborn Lounger, and the Pottery Barn Kids Newborn Boppy Lounger.
"In cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, The Boppy Company is conducting a voluntary recall of its Newborn Lounger to address a risk of infant suffocation," the company writes in a statement on its website. "Infants can suffocate if they roll, move, or are placed on the lounger in a position that obstructs breathing, or roll off the lounger onto an external surface, such as an adult pillow or soft bedding, that obstructs breathing."
Eight reports of infant deaths have now been associated with the Boppy Newborn Lounger due to suffocation during sleep, each death occurring between December 2015-June 2020.
In October of 2020, the Consumer Product Safety Commission warned caregivers about letting their infants sleep on lounging pillows and nursing pillows. The federal agency is responsible for overseeing thousands of home goods, and they declared these pillows unsafe for infant sleep.
The Boppy nursing pillow and newborn lounger are incredibly popular, and are staples to just about every expecting parent's baby registry—including my own, twice. They are supposed to help support a breastfeeding mama and make nursing her little one easier. The lounger is great for propping babies up while they're awake, so you can coo at them from a cushion instead of the floor. And while these items are great, amazing even, for those (supervised) uses, they can present a grave danger to a sleeping infant.
Seven recent infant deaths have been tied to nursing pillows and infant loungers made by Boppy, a maker of baby products, according to a new analysis from Consumer Reports. https://t.co/ukWQ25Cpv0— Nightline (@Nightline) September 3, 2021
When babies are left unattended or sleeping on these pillows, they can roll over or their heads can fall in a way that blocks their airway—which leads to suffocation. Last fall, the CPSC linked 28 infant deaths from 2012 to 2018 to these pillows made by a variety of companies, including Boppy.
Consumer Reports found that seven additional deaths have occurred since the CPSC warning in 2020, due to unsafe sleep practices with nursing pillows and loungers made by Boppy.
The data, listed in the saferproducts.gov database, found that most of the fatalities happened after parents put their babies to sleep while they were propped up by the pillow or lounger. The babies rolled over into the soft, cushy fabric and were unable to breathe.
The American Academy of Pediatrics has long recommended babies be put to sleep alone, in their own space, while flat on their backs and lying on a firm surface. No crib bumpers, no blankets, no stuffed animals, and no pillows—at least not until a baby reaches toddlerhood, and are able to move things away from their airway if necessary.
"We are devastated to hear of these tragedies," a Boppy spokesperson told Consumer Reports. "Boppy is committed to doing everything possible to safeguard babies, including communicating the safe use of our products to parents and caregivers, and educating the public about the importance of following all warnings and instructions and the risks associated with unsafe sleep practices for infants. The lounger was not marketed as an infant sleep product and includes warnings against unsupervised use."
The Boppy recall refund—how to get one
The voluntary recall pertains to ALL models and colors of the Newborn Lounger, the Preferred Newborn Lounger, and the Pottery Barn Lounger. An example of each model is depicted below. These recalled loungers were sold in a variety of colors and fashions.
To obtain a refund:
- Share the UPC or Item Number and Date Code on your Lounger.
- The UPC or Item Number can be found on the front of the Care Label toward the bottom.
- The Date Code is stamped on the back of the second label and is formatted XX-XXX.
- Provide a copy of your receipt if you have one, via email, text, or mail. This will help up determine the value of your refund.
- Provide a photograph via email, text, or mail that shows the destruction of the Lounger by cutting it in half to make it unusable.
If you've purchased a Boppy Newborn Lounger recently, you can apply for a refund here.
An earlier version of this story focused on the Consumer Reports story and was published on September 10, 2021. It has been updated to reflect the current news of the recall.