Ok the ever pondered question of a new… or seasoned… mom. To Snoo or not to Snoo?
When I was pregnant with my first, I too heard of this magical product and looked at all the things it promised to do wondering if it was worth the splurge. At the time, that splurge was around $700. Today the Snoo is being sold for $1,595. Yikes.
So what do I think of this device as a sleep consultant? Well shockingly, I am not against it. It puts into practice Dr. Harvey’s 5 S’s in an effort to soothe your baby back to sleep without you needing to get up.
So why don’t I start with what I do like about it:
1. It’s a safe space for your baby to sleep.
I have known many moms that in their desperation to get some sleep, put their babies in some pretty unsafe situations. One of my best friends could not set her baby down without the newborn crying, and so she often found herself dozing off in the rocking chair with her little guy on top of her. This is super dangerous since obviously baby can fall at any moment.
I myself did an insane thing in those newborn days to get some extra sleep. Before the Rock and Play was recalled, I placed my daughter on top of the dock a tot and put the dock a tot on top of the rock and play so that the rock and play could sway her to sleep while she was flat on her back. Insane right? You guys… one night the dock a tot unclipped from the bottom and my baby girl fell off! Thank God she wasn’t injured but it has got to be the dumbest thing I have ever done as a new mom. If you have been in that sleepless desperation, then you know what led me there.
I see moms on social media placing their babies in unsafe sleep places ALL. THE. TIME. in an effort to get their baby to sleep, and so that they in turn can also get some rest. In this case, If the Snoo calms your baby and keeps them sleeping in a safe location, I am all for it.
2.It makes the parent less likely to be the sleep prop
My main job with clients is around weaning sleep props so that baby or toddler can learn to go to sleep independently. Do you know which is the hardest sleep prop to wean? Mom feeding to sleep. There is a whole emotional aspect there that weaning from a paci, or the snoo itself don’t have. I have seen from past clients that the Snoo tends to keep them from feeding their baby to sleep. When they come to me they usually have an easier time working through their sleep plan and baby responds on the quicker side. However, it is probably important to note that parents that purchase the Snoo highly value sleep so they are also super easy to work with and follow their sleep plans to a T. So is it the Snoo or is it the parents? Who knows.
3. It is beautiful
I love the minimalistic look of the Snoo. It is so cute and doesn’t take up too much space. If it were sold just as a bassinet without all the bells and whistles and a reasonable price, I would have probably purchased it for the look.
4. It has a high resale value
Whether you like it or not, you will likely be able to resell it at a good price and get some of that money back. This is always a plus in the baby product world were you use things for less than a year.
Basically, If you have the money sitting in your bank account, care deeply about interior design, and will do just about anything to maximize sleep in the newborn days… go for it. However, I don’t think it is a necessity and there are some things I don’t like about it.
Ok… Here are the reasons I don’t think you need to go buy a snoo:
1. The price is outrageous and it is still not a guarantee
You know this company is turning a serious profit on exhausted parents. This product is the price of a high end stroller travel system, but you use it for only 3-6 months depending on the weight and developmental milestones your little one is hitting. Even when you splurge and decide to try it out, whether you are renting or buying, It is still not guaranteed your baby will like it and you may end up needing to invest in sleep help down the road anyway. Also, It is hard to know if the babies that do take to it would have been great sleepers without it anyway.
2. You can only swaddle arms down
One of the products that I loved having with my children was the Halo love to dream swaddle. This swaddle is great for babies who like to sleep with their arms up like both of my kids did. With the Snoo, if your baby doesn’t like having their arms down in the swaddle, your only other option is to keep the arms out and risk having the startle reflex in the arms throughout the night.
3. Having a Snoo doesn’t teach you to fish
Guess what? About half of my clients used a Snoo with their babies. Which means they still needed sleep help down the line. Why? Sometimes the weaning option is a disaster and doesn’t work well and parents need help with that, but mostly it is because having a Snoo doesn’t teach you anything about sleep science. Parents still end up needing help with a proper schedule, wake windows, sleep environment, and most importantly, independent sleep. When you work with a good sleep consultant you learn to fish. You learn what you should do in all sorts of situations: When baby falls asleep in the car, when baby is sick, while traveling, when you should be transitioning to fewer naps etc. So I think it is important to note that while it might help you get through the newborn days, it won’t be your answer to sleep in the long term.
The main thing I want you to take away from this blog post is that there is no magical sleep product that can guarantee to resolve all of your sleep issues. You won’t know what your baby will like and dislike until they are here, and if they will even need any specific bassinet at all. If you have your heart set on the Snoo, have the means to purchase one, and understand it may not be the end all sleep solution then by all means, get one! I loved having a Halo Bassinet (1/15 of the price) because I could swing it right over the bed and only needed to sit up and breastfeed. THAT was a game changer for me without breaking the bank.
What I do encourage you to do is learn more about sleep and prepare yourself for that 4th trimester. It is no joke and most of the time as new moms we obsess over the perfect crib, stroller, and swing without once thinking about what those newborn days will actually look like. Read about the 4th trimester, take the newborn sleep courses, set up your support team and know that things will get easier, with, or without the Snoo.
I hope this helps!