As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

SNOO Review – My Experience With The Smartest Bassinet

Most parents have stories about that one product that divides their lives into the time before and after they’ve discovered it.

That’s what the SNOO smart bassinet did for us – it was an absolute game-changer.

SNOO Smart Sleeper Baby Bassinet

Top Pick
SNOO Smart Sleeper Baby Bassinet
9.6/10 My Score
  • Automatic cry detection
  • App-controlled
  • Five intensity levels
  • Pattented swaddle technology
  • SAFEST bassinet ever made

To be honest, I’m not sure how I coped before the SNOO – oh wait… I didn’t! It’s hazy how I managed to survive for weeks on a couple of hours of sleep per night (if I was lucky).

Here is the thing, I’m a nerd when it comes to baby sleep. I had to become one when our little bundle of joy arrived. 

He was restless from the first night. His sleep patterns ranged from fidgety at best to completely sleepless at worst.

Each night was longer than the last. Or so it seemed.

Nothing I tried worked – feeding more during the day, keeping naps short, making sure the room is dark enough… been there, done that, moved on.

Enter the SNOO Smart Sleeper

The SNOO honestly changed my life.

Two weeks into my journey with the SNOO and he’d gone from waking up every 40 minutes to every 3 hours, just in time for the feeds.

SNOO smart bassinet in my bedroom

Six weeks in and the spontaneous awakenings/crying episodes became an exception, happening about once every few nights.

At ten weeks old, my son slept his first full 8-hour night – it was AMAZING!

And the wife and I…well, we slowly returned to some semblance of a normal life – for the first time in months.

First things first – how does SNOO work?

The SNOO is a responsive bassinet that uses cutting-edge technology to improve baby sleep.

Here is a a rundown of the main features from the SNOO:

It’s automatic

You tuck in the baby, and the SNOO puts them to sleep by gently rocking and playing white noise. It’s equipped with three microphones, motion sensors, two motors, and a speaker. When your baby fusses, the SNOO activates to calm them.

It’s responsive

The SNOO’s sensors receive information about what’s going on in the bassinet and respond by changing the rocking intensity and the volume of the white noises until the baby is asleep again.

SNOO smart sleeper side view button

Sensitivity adjustable

You can adjust the sensitivity in the app. If you choose higher sensitivity settings, the rocking and white noise will have a lower activation threshold and start sooner.

Five intensity levels

The SNOO has 5 stages of rocking intensity: Baseline and levels 1 to 4. What I especially like is that the transitions between these are so smooth they’re almost unnoticeable.

App controlled

The SNOO can be controlled through a smartphone app – you turn it on with the push of a button on your phone and, from that point on, the smart technology takes over.

SNOO sack attached to the SNOO bassinet

It’s safe

The SNOO features a patented swaddle design that keeps the baby safely on its back and a mechanism that only allows the bassinet to activate if the swaddle is in place.

Calming as the womb

The SNOO smart sleeper hit the market in 2016 and raised the bar of what you expect from a bassinet.

According to the company behind it (Happiest Baby) and its creator (Dr. Harvey Carp), the SNOO bassinet imitates the soothing sensations of a womb.

baby in the SNOO top view

When your baby starts to squirm or fully wakes up, the sensors in the bassinet register the movements and sounds, adjusts the white noises and the rocking intensity to get the baby back to sleep – without you having to lift a finger.

As safe as a baby bed gets

Happiest Baby also advertises the SNOO as the “safest baby bed ever made.”

In 2019, Happiest Baby released a statement about a milestone they’ve reached – 50+ million sleep hours without a single case of SIDS.

They attribute the safety milestone to the SNOO bassinet being the only bed out there that fully meets the AAP’s recommendation (American Academy of Pediatrics) that a baby should only sleep on the back for the first 6 months.

SNOO side view warning tag

We already mentioned the industry-leading safety standards. It features patented swaddle technology and safety clips that only allow the SNOO to be activated when the baby is safely in place, and the swaddle is attached.

Does it all sound too good to be true?

Probably. At least it did to me before I finally decided to take the leap.

Did it work as advertised?

For me, it absolutely did.

Within 8 weeks of getting the SNOO, my son was sleeping full nights more often than not. By 3 months, he was consistently sleeping 9+ hours per night – every single night!

My journey from skeptic to “thank God for SNOO.”

The very fact that you’re reading this post probably means that you’re a fellow parent of a restless sleeper, or you’re expecting your little one and already heard the horror stories from other parents.

I get it.

Believe me; I honestly get it because I lived it.

Waking up every hour, day after day, for weeks, is literally like torture. You feel like you’re doing something wrong.

SNOO smart sleeper review

I was stressed beyond words, but, more importantly, I was seriously worried about my son. I knew sleep was important for babies, and I just couldn’t figure out how to help him.

The point of no return – less about our stress, more about his long-term health

Three weeks into my sleepless nights and I started “devouring” every piece of information on sleep deprivation in babies that’s out there. What I found was, to put it mildly, disturbing.

THIS IS THE BIG ONE – sleep deprivation in babies dramatically increases their chances of developing emotional disorders later in life.

I’m talking about things like depression and anxiety (this study from the University of Houston is a good read on that).

They tell you to “hang in there because that’s the parent’s job.” 

But it wasn’t just about me anymore. The more I learned, the more I realized there might be more at stake here – his long-term health.

As the search went on, I kept finding a way back to one product that stood out – the SNOO smart sleeper.

baby in the snoo smart sleeper

People sharing their reviews, magazines talking about it, it was all the rage.

So, I focused my time and energy on doing all the research on it I possibly could. I probably read every single SNOO review in existence before buying it.

It seemed everyone that tried the SNOO had some level of success with it.

The elephant in the room – is the SNOO worth it?

I’m a conservative buyer. I’ve always been one. I’m not cheap, but I like to get my money’s worth.

If you told me a few years ago that I’d invest over 1K in a bassinet, I’d probably crack a joke about your sanity. Today, I’d chuckle if you asked me why I spent so much.

The math behind my decision to buy the SNOO

Say that my wife and I lost three, four, or five hours of sleep a night for 4 months. That adds up to 360 to 900 hours of sleep per parent.

For the two of us, the number easily goes over a thousand sleep hours.

Snoo top view

This meant that if I bought the SNOO at, say, $1.5K and sold it for $900 (the price of a pre-owned SNOO on ebay), I’d end up paying $600 for it. That would mean I’m paying 50-60 cents for an hour of sleep.

If it delivers on the promise, that is.

If it doesn’t, I could always return it within 30 days for a full refund.

The second point was a biggie in the decision process. I’ve already had experiences with companies making promises about unconditional refunds only to take it back and justify it all with some small print in the terms.

The SNOO reviews and money back guarantee

One – I read all the SNOO reviews I could dig out, seeking out the experiences with the return policy. There weren’t many reviews mentioning the return process, but there were no red flags in the ones that I did find.

Two – I submitted a question about it through the form on their website. I wanted to be clear on the return policy.

Long story short – there was no fine print or hidden terms; they were open about it. I also appreciated the speed and efficiency of their customer service.

Once I made sure I have all the bases covered, the price became a moot point.

In short, if you ask me, the SNOO’s worth exceeds the hefty price tag, and then some.

SNOO reviews by real customers
SNOO reviews from happiestbaby.com

These are just some of the thousands and thousands or happy parents that have used the SNOO

Should I rent or buy a SNOO smart sleeper?

For me, this was a non-issue.

It’s great that you can rent the SNOO but owning one is usually the best choice for parents planning multiple kids like I was.

First of all, it was a question of hygiene, and then there was the hassle of having to keep the box around so that you can re-pack it and send it back.

SNOO at the foot of the bed

Don’t get me wrong; I have no doubt they’re doing a solid job of cleaning the bassinets. It was just about the thought that another baby slept in the same bassinet. I wasn’t comfortable with that.

I saw no negative SNOO reviews talking about any hygiene issues. It’s a personal choice, and, looking back on it now, I was always going to buy. For some parents, renting will make more sense. 

If you’re in doubt, you can read my detailed comparison of buying vs renting the SNOO

The SNOO in action

The basic SNOO functionality is very simple. It has ONE button and you don’t actually need the app to use the SNOO.

To use the SNOO at the most basic level, you simply swaddle the baby with the SNOO sack, slide the swaddle into place and press the start button – that’s it!

Snoo button and bottom side

In its simplest form, the SNOO works with the default settings for cry sensitivity and white noise volume. When your baby fusses, the SNOO will increase it’s soothing levels from 1 to 4 in order to calm him. If for some reason it still detects crying after a set amount of time it shuts itself off automatically.

If like me, you love to optimize everything and play with all of the settings of your latest gadgets you will certainly want to install the app on your smartphone. 

The app allows you to change most of the settings to your linking (more on that later) but the basic functionality remains the same.

Here are some of the questions parents have been asking regarding the SNOO’s functionality.

Does the SNOO rock all night?

By default the SNOO does rock all night. The “baseline” level is the “resting” motion for the SNOO and it is a very slow and smooth rocking motion (see video below). There is a “weaning” option in the app that allows you to stop the motion altogether but this function is only suggested once your baby is older and you want to start preparing to transition to the crib.

Does the SNOO play whitenoise all night?

Yes, the whitenoise is always on by default and the volume can be controlled through the app.

Can you control the SNOO soothing motion?

Yes, you can control the speed of the motion using the SNOO app. There are 5 motion levels (Baseline and levels 1 to 4).

baby awake in the SNOO

What I loved most about my SNOO

First of all, the thing works. As a parent, you are bombarded with unrealistic advertising claims daily.

As soon as a few of those turn out to be false, you get confused about what to believe.

So, the simplest answer to what I liked about it would be that it delivers on its promise.

SNOO Smart Sleeper Baby Bassinet

Top Pick
SNOO Smart Sleeper Baby Bassinet
9.6/10 My Score
  • Automatic cry detection
  • App-controlled
  • Five intensity levels
  • Pattented swaddle technology
  • SAFEST bassinet ever made

With that said, let’s dig deeper into what makes the SNOO what it is.

Ultimate safety – a solution for my deepest fear

If you’re anything like me, there’s nothing that disturbs you more than hearing about SIDS cases.

Learning about the SNOO safety stats was crucial in my decision process.

In fact, looking back on it now, that was probably the moment I decided to go with the SNOO – when I read about the zero SIDS cases.

baby in the snoo top view

To be honest, it’s unbelievable to me that SIDS is still a mystery in this day and age. We’re planning to colonize Mars and still don’t know why sudden baby deaths happen.

That’s why I love the thought of having a “secret weapon” against my worst fear.

I won’t lie; investing in the SNOO bassinet is a big part of me feeling like I’m a good dad.

The SNOO sack

I’m not the handiest dad when it comes to swaddling. The blankets, the zippers, the velcros… I’m not that great with any of those.

That’s why the SNOO sack was a huge relief.

It’s easy to use, and you pretty much can’t go wrong with it. It takes seconds to have the little guy in place without irritating him and frustrating myself.

snoo sack in the snoo not attached

The SNOO rental and purchase comes with a SNOO sack and sheet bundle included. The package comes with three white sacks in different sizes – small (5-12 lbs), (medium (12-18 lbs baby), and large (18-25 lbs). A range of other colors and styles of the SNOO sack are available on the Happiest Baby website.

The white noise

If you’re not familiar with it, let’s take a second here to explain what white noise is and why it matters.

In the context of sleep, white noise is a hissy sound that’s been proven to relax and soothe the human brain. The SNOO smart sleeper adjusts the white noise volume depending on what it’s trying to do. You also have control of the volume through the SNOO app.

snoo app

You’ll probably need to play around with the volume settings for a bit to find what works just right for your baby. For me, the higher volume settings worked better (see the app screenshot above).

The SNOO app – control settings and modes

I like the app. It works as advertised.

It allows you to control the starting motion level, the volume, the responsiveness, and it automatically logs sleep/soothing/awake times.

snoo app screen shots of soothing levels

It’s really easy to change the soothing levels up and down and the background color clearly indicates which level you are on.

The also offers you the option to turn two additional modes on and off – motion limiter and weaning mode.

The Motion Limiter function limits the rocking to level 2 and is recommended for preemies and babies under one month old.

The Weaning Mode is designed to ease the transition to the crib. While in weaning mode, the SNOO smart sleeper will stop the constant motion as soon as the baby is completely calm.

The Snoo app interface

In my experience, the app’s interface and features have been super intuitive and easy to use. What does take some time is figuring out which setting works best for your baby.

The SNOO actually works right out of the box on the default settings without any app intervention. Simply strap your baby in the swaddle and press the only button on the SNOO.

snoo button close up

If you’re like, you will want to use the app to optimize your experience.

App settings

The biggest point of contention when it comes to the SNOO settings is the responsiveness – how easily the snoo gets activated when your baby starts to fuss.

For the first week or so, my son’s fussing was more like a grunt. I turned the responsiveness all the way up to “Very High Responsiveness” and it still wouldn’t pick up his grunts.

snoo app screen shots

By the time he started crying it was too late. My solution was to activate the SNOO myself from the comfort of my bed. Sure, I was awake, but I didn’t need to get up and bounce him around the room to get him to sleep again. 

I just set it to Level 1 manually and he would doze back to sleep.This lasted a few weeks. 

As he got older and louder, it was easier for the bassinet sensors to pick up on him fussing and lower sensitivity worked just fine.

Connectivity

I did not experience any connectivity issues. It worked with our WI-Fi seamlessly and without drop-outs.

However, when gathering data for this SNOO review, I did stumble upon a few reviews reporting connectivity problems. It was almost always a problem with initially connecting the SNOO to the Wi-Fi, and the cause was almost always the same – the network was set to hidden, and SNOO can’t see hidden networks.

Based on the stats I’ve gathered in the process of reviewing the SNOO, stuff like this happened in less than 1% of new SNOO owners.

What I like most about the SNOO app and what could be better

I love the simplicity of the interface, the intuitive design, and the tracking of his sleep patterns.

My wife liked the design and the colors, which is probably something I wouldn’t even notice. But yeah, come to think of it, it’s pretty.

I would add one thing to the app – it would be awesome if I could add hours to his sleep log manually.

snoo app

It would allow me to track the naps he takes on walks or in his crib – it’s not a big deal, but it would be a plus.

They did add the option to change the start of the log time for the day, which adds flexibility to how I log his sleep, but you still can’t manually add naps.

The other improvement I would make to the app is to add a “Night Mode”. You end up using the app in bed a lot while room sharing with you baby and sometimes right beside him.

It would be nice to have a “Night Mode” option to make the app less bright in a dark room.

Assembling the SNOO smart bassinet

Setting the SNOO up was a breeze. I’m talking “under 5-minutes” easy.

The SNOO bassinet comes with:

  • The main bassinet body
  • Four legs
  • Power cord
  • Mattress pad

To assemble the SNOO you can place the bassinet on its side on a soft surface, insert the legs until they lock in place by following the colored arrows that match the right leg with the right slot, and tighten the already attached bolts.

snoo bottom legs

Unpack the cord, plug it in, and you’re good to go.

Happiest baby and Dr. Harvey Karp – the people behind the SNOO

You might have heard of Dr. Harvey Karp even before the SNOO. He’s one of America’s most well-known and trusted pediatricians.

I knew him as the brain behind Happiest Baby on the block. The book was a part of my must-read while we were expecting.

I made a note about Dr. Karp’s 5 Ss of calming a baby in a notebook I keep and fill with useful tidbits of knowledge.

The name rang a bell while I was initially researching the SNOO. It made the decision much easier. I felt like I was buying something from a person I know.

The Happiest Baby customer service and the 30-day return policy

My only contact with the customer service happened before I got the SNOO. I contacted them to ask about the return policy.

The response I got was prompt (same day), kind and to-the-point.

But it’s expected for the customer service to be efficient when it comes to potential customers.

You are yet to give them your money. It’s what they do after that truly counts.

snoo review

That’s why I did more digging and read customer experiences from people who had questions after getting the SNOO. Based on what I saw, they provide exceptional customer care.

One thing was crucial to me – I did not find a single report of them not honoring the 30-day return policy or the 1-year warranty.

The SNOO mattress and the sheets

Before buying, I did my due diligence on both the materials used for the mattress and the sheets of the SNOO.

The mattress adheres to the strictest safety standards as defined by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. When it arrived, there was no off-gassing or smells.

The SNOO sheets are tightly fitted to eliminate any chance of crumpling. They are also 100% GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard) certified.

What could be better

Let’s start with the obvious one – the price. It’s the single biggest point of discussion among new parents considering buying a SNOO Smart Sleeper.

Nobody really talks about whether the SNOO is good – it’s whether it’s so good to justify coughing up so much money.

snoo legs

As I said a few times already, for me, it totally was worth the price tag.

A big point here is that it holds value well and, if you do sell it, it covers about two-thirds of the cost.

Portability – nothing to write home about

SNOO is a bit bulky and you’re not likely to take it on trips. I mean, you can do it, but it would take up most of your trunk space.

Two things that make up for the lack of portability (kinda):

  1. The same white noise that SNOO uses is available on iTunes so, when away from home, I can play it on my phone
  2. My son became a calmer sleeper after a few weeks with the SNOO, even when sleeping in a regular bassinet

Another option for longer trips is to rent a SNOO for the month and have it sent to your destination. I know it sounds a bit crazy but I know parents that have done this and they enjoyed a calm vacation with full night sleeps.

My life before and after the SNOO

I was always gonna find the SNOO. There’s no question about that.

Still, I might’ve decided it was too expensive or too good to be true.

Thank God that didn’t happen.

baby yawning in snoo

While we were expecting, I had one main fear. It was becoming the type of parents who turn caring into a job.

Parenting should be a joy and add to your life. It should never feel like you’re clocking in and out.

I love life way too much to allow that to happen.

I’m proud that I didn’t.

The SNOO was a big part of that – a big part of not settling. 

For that, I’m thankful.


For more information on the SNOO Smart Sleeper, you can check out my review of the SNOO rental as well as the comparison of the SNOO versus two other popular bassinets (SNOO vs mamaRoo and SNOO vs Sense2Snooze).

And if you think the SNOO is not the best choice for your family, you can also see my choice for the best SNOO alternatives available today.

SNOO Smart Sleeper Baby Bassinet

Top Pick
SNOO Smart Sleeper Baby Bassinet
9.6/10 My Score
  • Automatic cry detection
  • App-controlled
  • Five intensity levels
  • Pattented swaddle technology
  • SAFEST bassinet ever made