Monday, May 13, 2013

4moms Mamaroo Review - In Depth

When I first saw the Mamaroo by 4moms I was stuck by it's simplicity.  (And because it looked like some hybrid Jetsons/Mork from Ork baby gear.)

Someone forwarded me a link to the website for this item,, and I decided, "I want".

LOL - and what pregnant mama wants, pregnant mama begs for.

I did get it as a gift and currently (though not when it was bought for me) it retails for about $230.

So here comes the review. This is more indepth than what the video has. That is only two minutes and goes only over the pros & cons.  Here we will break them down more.

First I'll give the details or "specs". Then I'll discuss how they work IRL compared to what is advertised.  

Finally - I'll say whether I think it's a good purchase, a nursery must have, value, pros/cons etc. 

The Details
  • Six patterns to choose from (shown is "green plush")
  • Smooth reclining seat, locks to adjust (left picture, back bar is the adjustment)
  • Built in nature sounds, with volume OR you can connect an ipod/iphone
  • Reversible toy balls
  • 5 Unique motions with variable speeds for each
  • Up to 25 lbs
...And In Reality...

This item came unassembled but was a snap to assemble, truly.  Took a very round pregnant lady very little time.  It's a heavy item, which is good, you don't want to be knocking stuff over while lumbering around on invisible feet.  After the baby is born, you don't want something flimsy holding your kid. It's a solid item, and I felt safe putting my newborn into it.

However, the first test subject wasn't too happy.  We try out all our stuff on our 12 lb Shih Tzu. The Mamaroo is NOT intended for pets.   And Shih Tzus may get extra cranky. Just a warning.

Ok - so on to the Details and how they work.

  • Six Patterns - not much to say about this. Pick your pattern and go with it.  We picked green, simply because I liked the green.
  • Smooth Reclining Seat - This is actually pretty cool.  The bar that runs along the back of the Mamaroo is the bar that slides through the locking mechanism.  You can slide it to the lowest position for a more "laying flat" baby or up to have them sitting up straighter.  Note however, there are no shoulder straps.  This means if you have your seat in the most upright position, if your baby has great abs like mine, they could theoretically fling themselves out. So stay nearby if you put the seat this inclined.
  • Built in Nature Sounds or music player - I use the nature sounds, which are called "white noises" every where else, frequently.  I have to, because I lost the little cord that goes from the Mamaroo to the iPod/iPhone. It detaches from the unit and is only about 3 inches long.  I never got to try out my stunning collection of Eminem or P!nk.  Dangit!  
  • Reversible Toy Balls - Well yes. They are there. Three soft plush football shaped toy balls.  On one side of the balls are black and white images. On the other side of them are the same images in bright primary colors. And they dangle.  Just - dangle. All I could think of when I saw it was:  Angler Fish of DEATH!  Seriously - they just....hang. It's kind of odd. And the tags are 2 inches long. ON EACH BALL.  Very strange.

  • 5 Unique motions with variable speeds for each- Here's where it gets good. This detail is the reason I wanted the Mamaroo.  Unlike regular swings which can typically go either side to side or front to back in a swinging motion - the mamaroo has two moving parts. First, the post that the seat is perched on slides side to side on the base. Then, depending on which of the "...five unique motions" you choose, the seat section bounces up and down to create a different movement.  Additionally, after you choose your motion, you can increase or decrease the speed of the motion.

  • Up to 25 lbs. Well - no need to review this.  You can put a child, up to 25 lbs, into it provided he or she is not sitting on their own, crawling, etc.  This item is for babies that don't yet move too much. 

The Pros: It's versatile. It really can be tilted to just about any position to sit/lie in.  The style of it is good and its pleasing to look at. It's not an overly loud mechanical item either.  With the player attachment and decent speakers it's pretty nifty.  The movements and options mean they sleep well, and if they get tired of one movement, you have 4 others and various speeds to choose from.   The material literally zips off for easy cleaning should your little one have a blow out or upchuck.  (If you don't have kids yet and don't know what a blow out is, I'll let it be your pleasant surprise)

The Cons:  The cost is a big one.  While it's cool looking, no doubt, the price is prohibitive for parents who are, like most of us, on a strict budget. Shelling out $230 for an item Lil' Suzie will only use for six months seems a bit much, but I have one so clearly not all that prohibitive.  One thing I didn't like was the rounded seat, it often had her chin on her chest as she slept - which is a big no-no. If the back where straighter that would be better.  The player cord detaches from the base.  It's tiny and was lost pretty much in the first month.  There are no shoulder straps to keep babies like mine, who like to lean and move a lot, more secure.  I would love to see some plush straps. 

All in all - I like the 4Moms Mamaroo. For the first three weeks, my daughter wouldn't sleep anywhere else.  She needed the motion and the swing we were given just wasn't doing it.  Now at 12 weeks she is in it sometimes, but not as much for sleeping through the night as the occasional nap in it.

If you can afford it - I'd say it's a good purchase. Definitely not a necessity item, but one you'll appreciate.  It's also a conversation starter, and if all else fails...just keep shopping, just keep shopping....

*This is an UNPAID product review.  I was not asked to do it nor was I compensated or paid in any way. The item was bought by a family member and given to me at my baby shower. I have no affiliation with 4moms.

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