Cautionary Comparison – Newton® Baby Mattress & SafeSleep®

Newton® baby mattress

Newton® Baby Mattress and the New SafeSleep® Crib Mattress are compared side-by-side.  In this cautionary comparison of the Newton® Baby Mattress to New SafeSleep®, we peel back the layers to see the differences between these top 2 breathable crib mattresses.

You have found the perfect crib.  It is now time to find a crib mattress to put into it. Choosing a crib mattress most likely seems like a boring task but it’s one that warrants careful consideration. 

The Crib Mattress Safety Features the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Recommends are Simple:

  • Firm
  • Tight fit in the crib
  • The mattress is new 
  • The mattress is not taller than 6 inches
  • If it requires a sheet, make sure it fits tight

However, deaths of infants placed on their backs and found face down on firm fiberfill crib mattresses, fitting the criteria of the safety features listed above, continue to occur.  Specifically, 3,500 babies in the US die each year from sleep-related deaths.

It’s Not Surprising The Two Leading Crib Mattresses Are The Newton® Baby Crib Mattress and The SafeSleep® Crib Mattress.  

In this article we will explore the following:

  • Similarities shared by the Newton® the SafeSleep® Crib Mattresses
  • Five Major Differences between the two mattresses
  • Why we find the SafeSleep® the better choice
Newton baby mattress
Breathable Crib Mattress

Newton® Baby Mattress

I.  Similarities Shared by both the Newton® and SafeSleep® Crib Mattresses

Both the Newton® baby mattress and the SafeSleep® crib mattress address additional concerns both parents and medical professionals identify with foam and innerspring crib mattresses, should an infant end up in a face-down position.

According to scientific testing, both the Newton® baby mattress and the SafeSleep® crib mattress,
  • Significantly reduce suffocation risks
  • Are completely washable
  • Hypoallergenic & latex free
  • Contain no metal springs, polyurethane foam or, glue
  • Have certifications proving quality and non-toxic materials
  • Are made from eco-friendly materials and are recyclable
  • Offer free shipping
  • Offer a no-risk, in-home trial period
  • Have 5-star ratings
  • Firmness levels for both infants and toddlers
  • List price is comparable

II.   Five Major Differences Between the Newton® Baby Mattress and the SafeSleep®

Even Though The Newton® Mattress and The SafeSleep® Crib Mattress Share a Lot of Similarities, There Are Five Distinct Differences Parents Should Consider.

Your baby spends more than 70% of their first year sleeping on their crib mattress. Infants sleep up to 18 hours a day. Consequently, selecting the right crib mattress for your baby is a very important decision.  

When reviewing both the Newton® baby mattress and the SafeSleep® crib mattress, we find five significant differences parents should  consider when choosing one of the top two breathable crib mattresses,

  1. Difficulty vs ease of washing
  2. Suffocation vs. CO2 rebreathing risk
  3. Inner core vs. no core or fill
  4. Number and type of fabric layers 
  5. Flame retardants vs. no flame retardants

These Differences explained:

1.  Difficulty vs. Ease of Washing  

Washing the Newton® Baby Crib Mattress

The outer cover of the Newton® baby mattress is easy to remove.  You simply unzip around the entire perimeter of the Newton®  baby mattress – 360 degrees.  Note, the Newton waterproof mattress uses a second waterproof layer.  You must also remove the waterproof layer using the same method as the outer cover.   

The entire Newton® baby mattress requires lifting it out of the crib to remove the bottom section of both the top and second-layer waterproof covers. However, the mattress is lightweight.  Both covers are easily cleaned in a washing machine.

Unfortunately, when it comes to washing the plastic core, the process is difficult and messy.  The plastic core of the Newton baby crib mattress is stiff and rigid.  Consequently, it is not machine washable.  Instead, Newton® mattress company recommends washing the roughly 52 inches by 28 inches rigid plastic core in a bathtub.  The standard tub size measures 45 inches long by 22 inches wide.  The size disparity between the Newton® baby mattress and our standard bathtub makes washing the core cumbersome, wet and messy. 

Moreover, washing the Newton® baby mattress requires lifting the wet core and repositioning it several times to completely clean. Unfortunately, it is difficult to tell if the mattress core is completely clean.  

Newton Baby Mattress

Additionally, washing the Newton® baby crib mattress in a bathroom is particularly concerning. We all know streptococcus, e. coli and other pathogens lurk in every part of our bathrooms. Washing my baby’s crib mattress in a bathroom makes me believe it is vulnerable to these pathogens.  Consequently, the washing process is not only difficult, it seems unsanitary.

Drying the Newton® Baby Crib Mattress 

Another concern is the lengthy dry time.  Now that you are done washing the plastic core of the Newton® mattress, get ready for a lengthy dry time.  The Newton® baby mattress  takes 5-6 hours to dry.  I fear my baby just missed a nap.

The Newton® mattress must be completely dry before putting the cover back on to prevent mold.  Mold is attracted to cellulosic fibers, which is exactly what the insides are made of. And when they are not dried to completion, which can take half the day, mold can start to accumulate. 

Additionally, the mattress must constantly be washed  because mold can start to develop based on the vomit, drool, urine, feces, and sweat that is being deposited inside the mattress over time. In other words, if you don’t clean the inside, you’ll eventually grow a garden of microbes

Further, the Company recommends making sure the waterproof layer is machine dried and not allowed to stay damp for long to prevent an unpleasant odor.     

Newton Crib Mattress
Washing the SafeSleep® Crib Mattress

The SafeSleep® crib mattress has a cover that is suspended over a unique locking bar system.  It’s easy to remove the cover.  You simply lift the two bars, unzipping it, and pull the cover up and off the bars.   

The one-piece cover is easy to clean in a washing machine. The cover dries in 5 minutes on a medium heat setting.  If you prefer, the cover dries in about 15 minutes by air-drying it.  No fear of bad odors or missed naps with the SafeSleep®.

Additionally, spot cleaning the cover is possible while the cover is still on the frame.  A damp cloth does the trick.  Spit up is quick and easy to wipe up, and the dry time is amazing.

Best of all, there is no fill or core of any kind to cause mold or other pathogens to accumulate.

We love the fact the base of the SafeSleep® crib mattress is easy to wipe down with a damp cloth.  You can also use a disinfectant.  As an added bonus, the base stays in your crib for cleanings.  No wet mess or germ-filled bathroom is required.

Crib Mattress

2.  Suffocation vs. CO2 Rebreathing Risk

Suffocation Risk

Both the Newton® baby mattress and the Safe Sleep® crib mattress reduce suffocation risks.  The truth is, most crib mattresses reduce suffocation risks if they are firm and do not allow face compression.  Face compression risk is the reason the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends a “firm” crib mattress and warns against soft pillows and blankets in the crib.  

In fact, the Newton® baby crib mattress is tested against three different inner spring, firm crib mattresses in an independent study.  Even though Newton® commissioned the study, all the mattresses pass the suffocation testing with the exception of one mattress having a vinyl cover.

CO2 Rebreathing Risk

If an infant is on a firm mattress, face compression is not an issue.  According to the AAP, the real issue is rebreathing CO2 (carbon dioxide) which is a lesser-known type of suffocation. 

While there are no scientific studies demonstrating directly preventing SIDS or suffocation by not rebreathing CO2, the AAP Safe Sleep Task Force relies on the hypothesis of rebreathing of carbon dioxide as a likely reason for unexpected infant deaths.  A basic pathophysiological principle is the hypothesis that rebreathing carbon dioxide is associated with SIDS and asphyxia. 

Crib mattresses containing fiberfill, loose cores, quilting on the surface, and even crib sheets  trap harmful carbon dioxide. Therefore, the AAP strongly encourages parents to place their infants on their back for every sleep. (Learn more about published studies on “SIDS and Crib Mattresses”)

Quilting On Cover And No Quilting On Cover

The Newton® baby mattress has quilting on the cover.  Even though the Company describes it as adding additional comfort, the AAP warns against the use of quilting on covers and pads.  Quilting can trap harmful CO2.

Newton Baby Mattress

Newton® Mattress Has Quilting On The Cover

Newton®’s waterproof mattress is also questionable when it comes to CO2 retention.  According to Dr. James Kemp, a pediatric pulmonologist at St. Louis Children’s Hospital, crib mattresses with porous interiors might actually trap carbon dioxide.  He points out that a mattress filled with tea tree bark made in Australia in the 1980s and ’90s and marketed as breathable turned out to increase the risk of SIDS.  According to a study by Kemp, crib mattresses with porous cores, similar to the Newton® baby mattress, allow more rebreathing of CO2. 

The SafeSleep® has no quilting.  Additionally, the SafeSleep® baby mattress has no waterproofing layer.  Most impressive, the only thing between a baby and fresh oxygen when facedown on a SafeSleep® crib mattress is a 1/8 inch open-celled cover.  Surprisingly, the SafeSleep® is equally as firm as a foam or innerspring mattress. 

The scientific testing on the SafeSleep® baby mattress is also impressive.  The testing shows CO2 is gone from the surface of the SafeSleep® crib mattress before a baby takes in their next breath of air, eliminating the risk of harmful CO2 rebreathing.  The majority of the AAP’s safe sleep recommendations center around keeping harmful CO2 away from a sleeping baby.  

It’s a scientific fact, infants take a breath every 1-2 seconds.  Amazingly, carbon dioxide is gone on the  SafeSleep® crib mattress in less than ½ a second.  This means CO2 is gone before a baby takes another breath, eliminating the risk of harmful CO2 rebreathing.  For parents who have received the devastating news their baby was a victim of positional asphyxiation, know how important eliminating CO2 rebreathing is.

Best Breathable Crib Mattress

SafeSleep® Crib Mattress Has No Quilting

3.  Inner Core vs. No Core or Fill

The Newton® baby crib mattress has a spongy plastic core that is made up of food grade polymers which is a plastic.  The plastic is made from a similar type of plastic used for yogurt cups.   Yogurt cups seem healthy enough.  I am just not sure I want my baby to sleep on them.

The SafeSleep® crib mattress has no fill or core of any kind.  Instead, the design promotes constant free flowing air. The center of the mattress is hollow, and the sides have open vents for air to pass through.  If plastic or yogurt cups aren’t your thing, the SafeSleep® baby mattress is the better choice.

Newton Crib Mattress

Newton® Baby Mattress Has A Plastic Core

best crib mattress

SafeSleep® Baby Mattress Has No Core

4.  Difference in Fabric Layers

Both the Newton® baby mattress and the SafeSleep® crib mattress use the same 3D open-weave fabric for the mattress cover.  The Newton® baby crib mattress covers the entire mattress’s plastic core.  The SafeSleep® has a cover (called a topper) that is suspended over the mattress base.  The mattress base has solid wood sides with cutouts.  A unique locking bar system holds the SafeSleep® topper over the solid wood base. 

Both crib mattresses offer the desired firmness for both infants and toddlers.  

The Newton® baby mattress has an additional layer.  This layer is viscose.  Viscose creates a waterproofing barrier to the Newton® baby mattress.  Traditionally used for upholstery, Viscose is a semi-synthetic material.  It’s derived from wood pulp, which is treated and spun into yarns to make fabric.

Most fabric manufacturers agree, viscose production is chemical-heavy.  The toxic chemicals used in the production of viscose include sodium hydroxide (caustic soda), and sulphuric acid. Environmentalists point out these chemicals are known to pollute the environment. 

What we find most disappointing, even though the viscose appears to be light and breezy, is since this synthetic fiber is water-repellent it  tends to allow sweat to build up, causing discomfort and irritation.  

Newton baby Mattress

Newton® Mattress Uses a Viscose Fabric 

Another issue is, removing the viscose layer requires two covers to be removed compared to the one cover of the SafeSleep® .

The SafeSleep® mattress topper has a nylon netting under the 3D open-weave fabric offering stability and extra firmness to the topper.  The SafeSleep® mattress offers an impressive amount of firmness. 

The 3D fabric and netting are sewn together making it easy to remove the topper for washing.  More importantly,  we find it does not cause heat to build up.  In contrast to the Newton® mattress, the SafeSleep® allows for natural evaporation of heat and moisture which proves to significantly reduce sweating and irritation.

The SafeSleep® has no waterproofing fabrics or chemicals.  Instead, the SafeSleep® allows liquids to quickly pass through the 3D open-weave fabric and land on the bottom of the mattress base away from your sleeping baby.  This feature gives the SafeSleep® additional marks for safety.  If an infant should spit up in the middle of the night, parents can rest assured their baby won’t by lying in potentially dangerous pooled liquids.

Breathable Crib Mattress

SafeSleep® Has a Nylon Netting Layer

5.  Flame Retardants vs. No Flame Retardants

The waterproof viscose cover on the Newton® mattress also creates the flame retardant component of the mattress.  By incorporating “phosphorus” in the viscose matrix during the fiber spinning state, the viscose cover creates a flame retardant barrier. Hum, it seems like more chemicals added to chemicals.

The SafeSleep® uses no flame retardants.  This does not mean the SafeSleep® is not flame proof.  All crib mattresses must be compliant with the CPSC’s open flame testing.  Since the SafeSleep® has no fiberfill or any kind, it passes the testing without the use of any flame retardant chemicals. 

It’s not hard understanding why SafeSleep® is the #1 pediatrician recommended crib mattress and why it continues to receive top endorsements from leading AAP pediatric physicians and safe sleep policy makers. 

Newton has an edge in consumer awareness with its trendy social media posts, and high dollar ad campaigns.

With all the scientific testing on the SafeSleep® crib mattress, it is obvious  safety and scientific product testing is the Company’s focus.  

The Newton® mattress and the SafeSleep® crib mattress are the top two rated crib mattresses.  However, the SafeSleep® mattress has five distinctive advantages over the Newton® crib mattress you should consider when buying the best and safest crib mattress for your baby.

Consider These Five Distinct Differences Between the Newton® Mattress and The SafeSleep® Crib Mattress to Decide on Which Breathable Crib Mattress is Best for Your Baby:

  1. The Newton® crib mattress is cumbersome and messy to wash the core while the SafeSleep® crib mattress has no core to wash.
  2. The Newton® crib mattress uses a quilted cover.  Quilting is known to trap CO2.  The SafeSleep® crib mattress uses no quilting.  And it is scientifically proven to reduce CO2 rebreathing, a risk associated with SIDS.
  3. The Newton® crib mattress has a plastic core that can trap air flow, cause mold and other pathogens to accumulate. The SafeSleep® has no core, so air flow is uninterrupted.  Also mold and pathogens have nothing to accumulate on.
  4. Newton® uses an extra layer of viscose for waterproofing.  The SafeSleep® has a nylon netting underlay which allows liquids to pass through the surface away from a sleeping baby.
  5. Unlike the Newton® mattress, the SafeSleep® does not use any flame retardants or waterproofing chemicals.

Since your baby will spend more than 70% of their first year in their crib, you want the safest and most comfy crib mattress.  SafeSleep® crib mattress is the favorable choice among pediatricians and safe sleep experts.  And the reasons should now be clear why.  See our recap of the differences between the Newton® baby mattress and the SafeSleep® crib mattress at

Want more information on breathable crib mattress, check out this mattress comparison here.