Changing Mat Buying Guide

Welcome to the Nappy Gurus guide on selecting the perfect changing mat for your baby!

Whether you're setting up a nursery for the first time or upgrading your baby gear for baby no2, choosing the right changing mat is really important for comfortable and safe nappy changes.

A changing mat isn't just about keeping mess contained; it's about creating a safe, cozy spot for those countless diaper changes you'll be tackling. And it's important for your baby to be comfortable when you're talking about up to 12 times a day when they're newborn changes!

One point I would ask you to consider is whether you need a changing 'station' or table as such. I bought one for my eldest but actually found it much easier to use a changing mat on the floor for nappy changing. Just something to think about if you're a first timer!

Here's our changing mat buying guide which will answer everything you need to know about choosing a changing mat or basket:

Types of Baby Changing Mats

When it comes to changing mats, there's a variety to choose from, each with its own pros and cons. Here’s a quick rundown of different types:

Standard Changing Mat

Standard Changing Mat

These are your straightforward, no-frills changing mats, usually made from nursery grade foam with a wipe-clean pvc cover.

Key Features

Lightweight, reasonably portable, very easy to clean.


Cost-effective and straightforward; it's waterproof too. Usually sized to fit most changing tables and dressers.


Less supportive compared to more structured mats. The plastic surface can be cold on your little ones skin.

Wedge Anti Roll Change Mat

Wedge Or Anti Roll Changing Mat

Anti roll wedge mats are designed with raised sides to help keep baby centred during changes.

Key Features

Contoured edges which are a added safety feature to minimise the impact of your baby rolling. Made from wipe clean material for easy changing.


Anti roll mats help prevent your little one from rolling towards the sides with their raised edges. It offers peace of mind for little wrigglers.


Can be more expensive and bulkier, making storage challenging. Also can be cold on your baby's bottom.

Baby Changing Basket

What is a Changing Basket?

A changing basket is made from rattan or seagrass and is used with a changing basket liner as an aesthetically pleasing baby changing station. It's designed to double up as storage once you're finished using it as a changing mat.

You'll need a changing mat liner with them, look for something which is padded and wipeable.

Changing Baskets

A basket made from natural fibres which is lined usually with a waterproof liner.

Key Features

Attractive item for your nursery, very Instagrammable!


Looks lovely, and works in the same way as a standard changing mat as it is wipe cleanable. Can be repurposed as storage once you're finished using it as a change mat.


Heavier and not as easy to store or transport. Although they have handles, the handles are purely decorative and are not to be used for carrying baby.

Travel Change Mats

Travel Changing Mat

Foldable and lightweight, designed for on-the-go changes. Travel changing mats are a changing bag essential but if you choose the right one, they can also be used at home too.  The Cheeky Travel changing mat shown above

Key Features

Sometimes comes with pockets or compartments for wipes and diapers. However some travel change mats


Ideal for changes while travelling. However some travel change mats are actually larger than standard changing mats which makes them perfect for use at home too. The Cheeky travel changing mat can double up as a play mat for nappy free time, or a snuggly blanket. Plus it's machine washable.


May not offer as much padding as other mats.

Pocket Change Mats

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Changing Mat



The mat’s material affects everything from comfort to ease of cleaning. Wipe clean or washable mats are important for those inevitable nappy off pee or poops!


Look for non-toxic and phthalate-free materials for safety.



It needs to fit the space you plan to use for changing your baby, whether it's a dedicated table or a makeshift area in the living room. Bear in mind that your tiny newborn will soon grow into a wriggly toddler though!


Ensure it's large enough to accommodate your growing baby but fits within your designated changing area.



The more comfortable and cosy the mat is, the happier your baby will be during changes.


Wipe clean surfaces are very practical but can be cold on little bottoms. Consider a changing mat liner or muslin. Also worth thinking about the amount of padding and the surface you're changing on.



If you're often on the move, consider how portable the mat is. You'll usually need a specific changing travel mat for out and about.


Lightweight, foldable mats are ideal for travel, however if you go for a larger one that can easily be used at home too.



Changing mats are available in a wide range of prices, from around £12 for a standard changing mat up to changing baskets which work out around £80.


Balance cost with features and longevity—sometimes spending a bit more upfront saves money down the line, particularly if you're paying for something more expensive but which can be multipurpose too.



Your daily routine can dictate what kind of changing mat is best for you. Perhaps you want an 'insta ready' nursery, so the changing basket vibe is best for you.

Maybe you just want practicality and something that fits your changing station. Or perhaps you need something which can be used anywhere around the home. All important factors to consider!


What's right for one family isn't best for another so consider your choices carefully.



You’ll see this mat a lot, so you might as well like how it looks! Every type of change mat will come in a range of styles and designs, so choose what works best for you.


From scandi chic to cute baby animal prints, choose a design that fits your nursery’s style.

Do I Need a Changing Mat Cover?

No, a changing mat cover isn't essential however if it's a wipe clean surface you may wish to use a cover so that it feels warm on your baby's bottom! A changing mat cover adds a layer of softness and warmth.

Alternatively, a quick solution like draping a muslin over the mat can work just as well for added comfort.

Shop Muslin Squares


Choosing the right changing mat can make diaper changes more enjoyable for both you and your baby. By considering your needs and the factors outlined, you’ll find the perfect mat that offers safety, comfort, and convenience.

Got more questions or need advice? Drop us a line, or check out our other guides or blogs which might be of interest: 


About the Author: Helen Rankin, an advocate for sustainable living, embarked on her journey with reusable products when her first child was born in 2004. Facing limited options in cloth nappies, Helen’s passion only grew, leading her to launch Cheeky Wipes in 2008, right before welcoming her third child.

Helen's commitment to promoting sustainable solutions led to her taking over The Nappy Gurus in 2024. Today, she is excited to share her extensive knowledge and enthusiasm for all things reusable, helping a new generation of parents navigate eco-friendly choices for their children.



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