Are you feeling conflicted about getting a baby glider?
When I was preparing for my first newborn, the glider almost didn’t make it into the baby registry because there were just so many things that I want to get for my baby. But thankfully, a good friend of mine (and a more experienced mommy), convinced me that a nursery glider is really important for BOTH the mother and the baby. And it’s something that I shouldn’t scrimp on.
I’m really glad that I heeded her advice because the baby glider has been a lifesaver for the many long hours rocking, nursing or reading to the little one.
But the search for the right glider can be really time-consuming (but to mention confusing at times). Fret not.
You don’t have to start creating a spreadsheet to compare all the different features, dimensions, materials etc etc. We’ve gone through the exact process.
To help you navigate through your search, we have reviewed and come up with what we think is the BEST glider for nursery to meet your specific needs.
Do read on to learn more about how to choose the right glider. If you are in a hurry, you can also jump straight to our REVIEWS of the best glider chair!
Best Nursery Glider and Ottoman – Dutailier Modern Glider and Ottoman
Best Glider for Small Nursery – DaVinci Olive Upholstered Swivel Glider
Best Upholstered Glider Chair – Delta Children Emerson Upholstered Glider Swivel Rocker Chair
Best Glider for Tall Parents – Storkcraft Premium Hoop Glider and Ottoman
Why Do You Need a Baby Glider?
A nursery glider is not exactly a necessity. However, most parents would agree that if you have a budget and spare to spare, a glider would really come in handy.
You will be spending a lot of your time in the nursery with your baby (especially in the first few months) for the many late night feedings, soothing your baby to sleep, cuddling with your little one, reading stories or simply to catching a nap. So it is really important to have a spot where you can sit comfortably for a long time with the baby in your arms.
You may wonder if a normal armchair would suffice or what’s the difference between a traditional rocking chair and a modern glider.
The consistent back-and-forth rocking motion of a glider is very soothing to babies and can help to lull them to sleep more easily (every parent’s dream). In fact, don’t be surprised to find yourself nodding off.
In the past, our parents would have used rocking chairs in ace of the modern glider. The traditional rocking chairs rock in an arc-like motion which is less smooth and require more effort to keep the motion going.
What Is a Good Glider Chair?
A good glider should provide you with a comfortable place to bond with your baby and rest, but it should not be too bulky to take up your entire nursery. It should be durable enough to last through multiple kids, or can be used in your living room after the nursing days are over.
There are 2 main types of gliders.
The wooden frame glider has a more traditional and classic look, while the upholstered glider looks more like a regular armchair and can easily be used as a transitional piece in other rooms.
Here are features of a good glider that you can look out for:
- Comfortable and Well-supported
As you will be sitting for long periods of time on the glider, comfort is the most important criteria. You’d want your glider to be well-cushioned (for the seat and arm rest) and provide good lumbar support. A high backrest would also be great as it allows you to rest your head.
Different models and brands of nursery gliders come in various sizes. Do select one with a seat pan depth that fits your size comfortably.
- Smooth and Quiet Glide
As you can tell from the name, a glider’s most basic function is to glide. Jerky and jarring sounds can awaken your little ones just when they fall asleep.
If you want to ensure that you can still enjoy a smooth long glide over time, do check that your glider incorporates enclosed ball bearings.
The best gliders, such as the Dutailier, set themselves part by using exclusive and patented gliding systems to ensure smooth and long gliding motions.
- Arm Rests
Arm rest is a must-have. You’ll need a firm and spacious arm rest with padding to rest your elbows and the weight of your baby while you are breastfeeding or soothing your baby to sleep. If not, your arms will get tired very quickly. An adjustable armrest would be a really cool feature to have.
If you have the space, I would highly recommend getting a glider set with a matching ottoman that glides synchronously with the seat. You may not think that it matters, but this feature is really important for the added comfort and helps you position your body more ergonomically. Being about to lift up the legs really does wonders for swollen legs and leg pains.
A moving ottoman requires less effort to glide, compared to a stationary one. However, there are also people who prefers a stationary ottoman. Do try out the different types of glider and ottoman sets to find out your own preference.
- Nursing Stool
Some glider ottoman comes a nursing stool, which is an added piece that be pulled out and slide back underneath when not in use.
This is recommended if you are feeding your baby. The footrest allows you to lift up your knees, which helps to relieve the pressure on your back. This extra support helps you to maintain in a better position for a longer time when breastfeeding. As it is stationary, you will not feel like you are sliding out of the seat while nursing. If you are getting a glider without this additional footrest, you can also buy an optional nursing stool separately.
- Locking Mechanism
A locking mechanism to stop the glider in position allows you to balance better. It will make it easier and safer for to get onto, or stand up and get off the glider, especially if you are holding your baby in your arm. As your baby grows older and starts crawling, keeping your glider locked in position is also a safety precaution to prevent their fingers from getting pinched.
A good glider should last through your babies, and allow you to use it beyond the nursery after your baby has outgrown the nursing period.
Hardwood frame tend to be stronger and last longer, compared to softwood or wood compositors which are cheaper.
Look out for cushions that are durable and do not sag so easily. If possible, look for models that provides the option for you to buy replacement cushion
- Easy to Clean
Babies can be messy, and it is not uncommon for them to spit up. Detachable and washable cushions covers are the best. But there’s no such options, look out for stain-repellent fabrics and materials that are easy to spot clean.
A reclining glider allows to catch a wink, especially for the long late nights that you have to put up in the nursery or just to catch a quick nap in the day. When you lie down in a more horizontal position with your feet elevated, you will more comfortable and stable.
This is extremely helpful when your little one has fallen asleep in your arms. Any sudden movement may awaken the baby, so it’s a good time that you also catch some rest.
Reclining glider chairs that allow you to recline to multiple position tend to be more comfortable as you can find your own sweet spot. A lock mechanism is also important to ensure that it feels stable and steady at each recline position.
Not all nursery gliders have the recline feature.
Not all gliders have the swivel feature. I find this a really nice feature to have, but not a deal-breaker for me.
What’s nice about the swivel feature is that it allows you to turn 360 degrees, so it’s easier for you to manoeuvre. You can turn and grab things that would otherwise be out of reach. You can also have a 360 degree view of the room so you can watch over the other kids, or continue to engage with the rest of the family in the room. This becomes especially useful if you are moving in to the family room after the nursing days.
- Storage pockets
Storage pockets need not to be huge. They just need to fit some items that you might need for nursing, some entertainment for yourself (such as your phone and magazine) or some children books and toys to distract the fussy baby. And it would be really convenient if they are located within arm’s length from the seated position.
As the glider is an expensive item that you are expecting to use for a long time, it’s good to check out if a warranty is included. Generally, when a brand provides warranty, it shows their confidence and commitment towards the quality of their product.
Nursery gliders come in a wide range of features and design, along with that comes a wide price range. It can be a dizzying task to compare and decide on the best baby glider for you. To simplify your selection, it’s always a good idea to first set your budget to limit your options.
Dutailier Glider and Ottoman – BEST Nursery Glider and Ottoman
If you are looking for a classic wooden reclining glider chair, our top pick would be the Dutailier Modern 0410 Glider Multiposition-Lock Recline with Nursing Ottoman.
The Dutailier glider chair may be expensive but is are worth the price because of their quality. What sets it apart from the rest is its high quality sealed ball bearings (not plastic!), smooth and long gliding motion and durable hardwood construction.
Dutailier is a Canadian company that has been around for 35 years and prides itself in its craftsmanship.
What we like about the Dutailier Modern Glider
The gliding motion is very quiet. There is absolutely no squeaking or jarring sound when you are gliding or when you are getting in and out of the glider chair. So no worries about waking up your little one. The gliding motion is also extra-long and smooth, thanks to their own patented GLIDE-R-MOTION technology and the quality sealed ball bearings. It feels almost effortless to glide.
The seat can be locked in 6 different position along the glide, to give different resting options according to your preference while maintaining the recline angle. The locking mechanism is handy when you need to hold the seat steady for feedings. It also makes it safer to have toddlers around as you don’t have to worry about them getting their fingers pinched.
You can also recline the backrest up to 45°. More importantly, I love the fact that it can still glide when reclined! The reclining mechanism is super easy and smooth. All you need to do is to release the recline lock, lean back and make use of your body weight to activate the recline operation. You can then continue gliding in a more horizontal position. This is so comfortable that you can fall asleep and nap comfortably. A godsend when you have to pull an all-nighter in the nursery.
I love how the ottoman glides in tandem with the glider chair and makes it easier on the back. This synchronized gliding puts your body in a more ergonomic position and provides added support to your back and knee. But at times I also wished that there could be a locking option, just like the glider chair.
If you intend to use the Dutailier glider for nursing, do select the model that comes with a nursing footrest. The nursing stool is a slanted footrest that can be pulled out from the ottoman and held stationary so that you can place your feet and elevate your knee while feeding your baby. When not in use, simply slide it back underneath.
NOTE: Dutailier has models that comes with or without the nursing footrest – be careful to select the correct one when ordering.
The seat is also spacious enough to accommodate most nursing pillows. I find this the best glider for nursing. Many moms have found it easier and more comfortable to breastfeed in this glider compared to elsewhere.
However, you don’t have to wait till your baby comes to bring the glider home. In fact if you intend to get a glider, you should purchase it earlier to enjoy the most benefits. As you get further into your third trimester, you will find that the glider provides much better support and relieve to the pregnant back compared to your couch. Along with the ottoman, it works wonders for the swollen legs.
The Dutailier glider also features a high backrest, which is great for taller parents (around 6’) as they would be able to rest their head without straining their neck when leaned back. This may not be the case in many of the cheaper gliders in the market. But it is a really important feature for comfort as you could be spending hours at one go in the glider with your newborn.
Even though this is a classic and traditional wooden glider design, I love the stylish and modern color combination of dark gray fabric cushion and hardwood with a white finish.
The fabric is soft and easy to keep clean. The Dutailier glider cushions are made of high-density polyurethane foam so that they do not sag and will continue to provide the much needed support and comfort.
As a baby product, the Dutailier glider is designed to be safe. There are no sharp edges and make use of toxic-free finish. It meets the Canadian and USA safety standards (CAL117 and TSCA), and contains no flame retardants and carcinogenic products.
Over, this glider is easy to put together in 15 minutes as it comes pre-assembled. You only need 4 screws for the glider chair and 4 for the ottoman, which are all provided. Some moms-to-be managed to assemble it themselves at 35 weeks!
The arm rest comes with cushion padding. However I do not like that the padding attachment makes use of Velcro, which feels a little flimsy.
There are no storage pockets at the sides.
For really tall dads (close to 7’), they might find that the glider chair is not roomy enough and the arm rest height could be too low. A pillow may be needed under the arm to support the baby.
Seating dimension with cushion: 19″
Backrest length with cushion: 27″
Who Is It For?
If you value quality and you are looking for a baby glider that can last through multiple kids or continue to be used to rest and relax for many years to come, then this is the best glider and ottoman for you.
Overall, this very comfortable. Not only does the baby fall asleep more easily with the glide, it is also not difficult for parents to fall asleep and nap comfortably.
You can also look forward to continue using it for years. After the nursing days, you can move it to the living room and using it to relax and watch TV. In fact, Dutailier gliders are built to last (with proper care). Not to forget, 5 years limited warranty provided : )
DaVinci Olive Upholstered Swivel Glider with Bonus Ottoman – BEST Glider for Small Nursery
The DaVinci Olive Glider is your go-to upholstered glider if you are looking for one that looks modern and befitting of almost any rooms in your home as you transition out of the nursing days. It comes with the convenient swivel feature, a stationary ottoman a bonus lumbar pillow.
It is fully upholstered and the clean simple lines give it a modern and upscale look. Due to its small footprint, it’s recommended for small spaces.
What We Like About the DaVinci Olive Swivel Glider
The DaVinci Olive Swivel Glider is unbeatable when it comes to the comfort, quality and stylish look delivered for its affordable price point. This swivel gilder can easily grow with your child and transition to any room in your home, without looking outdated or screaming ‘baby’ in your eyes.
It has a 360 degree swivel function, which is not very common. I love that it becomes really convenient for you to manoeuvre and access things. Just imagine if you need to grab something off the shelf nearby, you can even continue with the forward-backward gliding motion as you swivel. The swivel feature is also perfect if you happen to have a fussy baby who prefers the side-to-side movement instead of the back-and-forth rocking motion.
The rocking motion is relatively smooth and quiet. It does lean back slightly when you rock this glider chair does not have a recline feature.
The DaVinci glider is well constructed and comfortable. You will find it hard not to fall asleep in the middle of the night while rocking your baby to sleep. The high backrest allows parents around 6’ tall to be able to lean back and still have their neck supported while rocking.
The armrests are comfy and at a good height for breastfeeding. It provides the support to take the loads off you while holding baby. It also comes with a bonus lumbar pillow for those who needed additional back support. If you don’t require, simply toss it aside.
I like that the cushion is firm and hence supportive. But some parents may refer it to be softer.
The fabric of the upholstery is soft. The cushion cover of the lumber pillow can be removed for washing, but not the rest of the upholstery. However, the seat fabric is easy to spot clean little spit ups and the stain don’t really show.
It comes fully assembled so all you need is just to unbox it! The downside to this is that it you really need to move it around the house, it can be heavy. So, be sure to get help!
Designed to be safe, the moving parts (for the swivel function) are underneath the chair so you don’t have to worry about the safety of toddlers or crawling kids at home. There are no toxic chemicals or flame retardants in the product. Not only so, DaVinci is one of the few brands that are Greenguard Gold Certified, which means that they have tested for over 10,000 chemicals.
Similar to Dutailier, there are no side pockets for storage.
The DaVinci Glider comes with a matching beautiful ottoman. However, the ottoman doesn’t move.
Having said that, this is ultimately a personal preference. Some moms actually prefer a stationary ottoman to use as a leverage or to use it for other purposes such as folding clothes. Others like it because they have toddlers who love to climb around and sit on the ottoman to play. I would highly recommend that you try it out in stores to know if this is a deal breaker for you.
After a couple of months, there are some complaints of squeaking noises.
Because it is a relatively compact and small glider chair, a bigger size parent may might it a tad too narrow or some moms may feel that the space is too tight to use with a nursing pillow. Also as the babies grow taller reaching around 5 months, some parents do find that their baby’s feet starts to kick into the armrest or dangle from the armrest.
Moms who are more petite (around 5’) might find it more difficult to rock comfortable as their feet is unable to touch the ground.
What are the Colors Available
The DaVinci Olive Glider comes in five beautiful color combinations that are elegant and contemporary – cream, dark gray, dark gray with cream piping, gray with cream piping, and navy with gray piping.
Who Is It For?
The DaVinci Olive Glider is the best glider for a small nursery without looking too bulky. If you don’t mind the stationary ottoman and likes a modern stylish look, this glider would be the RIGHT one for you. It is also priced at an affordable price point. However, the motion does feel more like a rocker than glider.
Delta Children Emerson Upholstered Glider Swivel Rocker Chair – Best Upholstered Glider Chair
Though it does not recline, it glides, rocks and swivels well.
It is perfect for petite moms as the seat is a little lower to the ground. But this may be an issue if you are taller. I highly recommend that you also get the matching gliding ottoman for added comfort.
What We Like About the Delta Emerson Upholstered Glider
The Delta glider looks great for its budget-friendly price tag. It is simple, stylish and really elegant. The fabric color is soft and neutral, which will work well with most color schemes if you plan to use it in other rooms in future.
Comfortable and Well-supported
The cushions are plush but firm, which provide sufficient support and encourage a better posture. The back rest is pretty upright. If you prefer a bit more tilt, you can probably throw in a boppy pillow.
The seat cushion also has a velcro at the base so that the seat do not slide outwards.
The arm rests is great for the extra support while nursing. It is well-padded and feels comfortable even for an extended time.
The fabric material is microfiber. Not only is the fabric soft, smooth and velvety, it’s also easy to clean.
Easy to Clean
The fabric seems to be pretty stain resistant. In the event of spilled milk or spit ups, simply grab a damp washcloth to wipe clean.
You can even remove the seat cushion easily to vacuum.
Tip: To keep the glider chair looking brand new for an even longer time, you can place extra burp cloths over the arms to reduce mess due to vomit or wear and tear.
Nice gliding and rocking motion
The glider chair rocks and glides smoothly and relatively quietly.
All the rocking and swivel parts are under the glider chair so that you don’t have to worry about smash your toes.
This Delta glider chair is also well-designed with kid’s safety in mind as the risk of a child potentially getting a pinched finger is minimal compared to a traditional rocker or glider.
The seat is wide enough for you to keep a Bobby pillow by your side if you need for feeding. Some moms have also managed to soothe her twin baby boys to sleep in it.
Taller parents may find that the seat depth is too shallow and the seat too low to the ground.
The Delta Emerson Upholstered Glider Chair does not recline. So while the seat is comfortable enough for you to doze off while rocking your little one, you might not sleep comfortably for a long time.
For added comfort, you’d need the matching gliding ottoman. Unfortunately, the ottoman is sold separately! However, you can enjoy some savings if you purchase the glider and ottoman bundle on Amazon.
Specifications and Dimensions
- Seat Pan Dimension: 21.75” W x 18.75” D
- Height from Floor to Seat: 18.75”
- Height of Arm Rest: 7″ from the seat
- Assembled Dimensions: 34.75” W x 35.75” D x 39”.5 H
- Weight Limit: 250 Ibs
The original height of the backrest is about 26.5 inches. After taking into account the 6.5 inches thick cushion, the actual back support height is about 20 inches tall.
In terms of seat pan dimension, it’s about 20 inches from the front of the cushion to the backrest. The cushion
The seat cushion itself is around 23” from front to back, but around 3-4” sits underneath the back cushion. So it’s approximately 19” from the front of the cushion to the back rest.
The height of the arm rest is approximately 7” above the seat, or 24” from the floor.
What Colors Does the Emerson Upholstered Glider Chair Come In?
It is available in 2 colors – Dove Grey With Soft Grey Welt and Beige With Ecru Welt. Personally I am a fan of the soft grey fabric.
Can I rest my head and neck while rocking in it?
The height of the back support (from the top of the cushion to the top of the backrest) is about 20 inches tall.
If you are 5’ to 5’4” tall, you will probably be able to rest your head on the back of the seat when you lay back.
For taller parents around 6’, the top of the backrest should come to about your shoulder height or few inches above your shoulder. So the top of your head would be sticking above the back rest while rocking in it.
Who Is It For?
This glider chair is really perfect for petite moms.
Shorter moms tend to have a hard time to find a chair that fits their height. Very often, they have their legs swinging in the air so they cannot fully sit back in the chair. But NOT With this chair anymore!
For moms around 5’ to 5’4” tall, you can comfortably sit back and have your feet touching nicely on the ground. It is just the right height to get up easily while holding onto the baby.
For taller parents around 5’8” to above 6’, you may find your knees hanging over the edge. You will probably feel better with the ottoman.
You don’t have to wait till your baby arrive to buy the glider. In fact, if you have decided on what’s the best nursery glider for your home, the earlier you purchase it, the earlier you can start enjoying!
Despite the differences in some of the features and looks, DaVinci, Dutailier gliders and Delta Children nursery gliders have been well-loved by many parents. If possible, do try out different types of baby gliders at stores or at your friends’ homes so that you know what your preference is, before purchasing on Amazon to enjoy the fast and free shipping!