Babble Best Picks: Car SeatsThere might not be a more important baby product that you'll buy than a car seat. You can skimp on hand-me-down clothes, used toys or even second-hand strollers, but experts agree that car seats should be brand new - especially if you don't know the history of the particular car seat. There are two options for babies: First there's the standard infant car seat, which is fitted more securely for a baby and is also lighter and more maneuverable for parents. An infant car seat can easily transfer between multiple cars, as well as turn into a travel system by hooking onto a stroller or shopping cart. However, infant car seats only face backwards and have a relatively short weight and height capacity, meaning you'll need to buy a bigger car seat toward the end of your baby's first year. The second option is to just go with a convertible car seat from the jump, saving you money on the infant car seat and multiple car seat bases. Every convertible car seat that we tested can be used rear facing starting with newborns, although they generally don't have the best fit and features for the littlest ones. Convertible car seats are naturally much bigger and heavier than an infant car seat, and aren't as simple to move in and out of cars. Plus, you'll need multiple car seats for multiple cars, rather than just buying an inexpensive base (as with infant car seats). Yet once your baby hits around 30 lbs., a convertible car seat can last you until your child is 65-100 lbs., possibly making it the last car seat you'll buy. But with so many different features, manageability and price points, it can be hard to tell just which ones are the very best. So to give you a hand, we tested the most popular infant and convertible car seats to fit your lifestyle and budget.
BEST URBAN INFANT CAR SEAT | Maxi Cosi Mico
Just like the Maxi Cosi convertible car seat, the Maxi Cosi Mico is a compact, minimalist infant car seat with a very low weight and height limit. In fact, the Mico only accommodates babies up to 22 lbs., while most others extend to 30.
However, there’s one circumstance in which the Maxi Cosi Mico exceeds all the rest: an urban lifestyle. If you’re typically in and out of taxis or a car service, this car seat is the absolute best for securing without the car seat base. While we wouldn’t suggest you forgo the base in a suburban lifestyle, it’s a fantastic option to have when you need it. And with an extra large handle and a lightweight design (at only 8 lbs.), it’s one of the easiest to lug around.
However, if you are using the base, it’s one of the more difficult to get in and out of cars. Plus, we aren’t crazy about the sun hood’s relatively little coverage.
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