Baby Play Mat : The Ultimate Guide [2022 Update]

Baby Play Mat

So you're about to invest in a play mat for your new bundle of joy?

Ask any new parent and they will say that it's not just as crucial, but maybe even more so than buying them their first cot or car seat!

With that being said, It is important to spend some time researching play mats so that you are confident in your purchase.

There are many different types of play mats on the market and it can be hard to know which one will work best for you.

However, there's no need worry because we have taken care of this process for you and outlined exactly what makes a baby play mats!

We will also provide you with a list of great Australian brands in 2022 that, through our research, provide great play mats which will suit everyone’s needs.

This blog is 'Baby Play Mats : The Ultimate Guide'.

Our guide will allow you to become more informed on how to purchase a play mat that suits your needs and style.

As an added bonus, we have an exclusive The Young Folk Collective discount code below.  😊

Let's get right into it. 

  • (1) What is a play mat?
  • (2) What makes a good play mat?
  • (3) Types of play mats?
  • (4) Our list of best foam play mats to buy in 2022
  • (5) Our list of best fabric play mats to buy in 2022
  • What is a Baby Mat?

    Baby play mats are an essential baby item and there is a wide variety available these days.

    Some parents may choose to get two or more play mats so that their child has somewhere safe as well as comfortable when they're not using the main carpet in your house.

    Since babies spend so much time on the floor playing, it's essential to have a safe floor mat for them. A baby play mat provides just that. A play gym is the perfect addition for extra tummy time the whole family can enjoy.

    What Makes a Good Play Mat?

    Below are 5 essential factors which make up a good baby mat. We will give you a brief overview of each to help describe how to spot a good activity mat.

    - Non-toxic

    A non-toxic mat is at the top of our list of what makes a good play mat for a reason. If a baby mat has toxic properties to its makeup, we recommend not purchasing it.  

    We have created an article that dives into this topic in more depth : 'Baby Play Mats : Are You Buying The Safest Option?'

    - Good Shock Absorption

    In the early months of a baby's life, a lot of time is spent on a playmat. The mat should provide a safe environment by providing enough cushioning and support when the inevitable trip and fall occurs. 

    - Waterproof and Easy to Clean

    We all know how messy newborns up to toddlers can be. From drool to a Crayola piece of art, you are going to need a playmat that is waterproof and easy to wipe clean. Look for a mat that is completely waterproof and can simply be cleaned with a soapy damp cloth.

    - Portability

    A good play mat will be large enough for your baby to move around and have a lot of space to explore their environment. Being large means that they take up a lot of floor space. A good play mat will be easily packed away, either by rolling it up or folded to store away easily.

    - A Great Design

    You will be pleased to know that the days of brightly coloured play mats filled with cartoon animals are gone. Today there is a great selection of designs to suit every households' tastes from the more minimalistic Scandinavian style to up-to-date bold designs created by talented Australian artists.

    It is important to note that the old cartoon styled designs served to allow newborn babies to focus on bold and contrasting patterns. However, this ability can also be achieved without compromising style.

    See article on 'Developmental Benefits of Using a Baby Play Mat'

    Types of Play Mats

    - Foam Play Mats

    Baby play mats that are made from foam are the most popular type of playmat as they provide excellent shock absorption for padded play. They are waterproof and with their popularity, there are some fantastic artistic designs to choose from in Australia.

    A few foam play mats out in the market are made from low-quality materials and may pass ton toxic international standards. Don't worry, and you won't find any of these mats in our list of best mats. For more information on this topic, see our article on 'Baby Play Mats : Are You Buying The Safest Option?'.

    - Fabric Play Mats

    Fabric play mats are lightweight and designed to be taken with you to the beach, playground, play dates and everywhere in between. They are generally make from a cotton top layer and waterproof bottom.

    Foam Play Mat

    OK, so now you know the factors of what makes up a quality play mat.

    Want know the best part?

    We have already done the complex research for you and handpicked the best play mats Australia has to offer using the criteria outlined above, and there are some fantastic ones.

    Drumroll please.....!

    Our list of Best Foam Baby Play Mats to Buy in 2022

    The Young Folk Collective Kids Play Mat

    The Young Folk Collective

    Foam play mats is the category we at The Young Folk Collective are in. We selected this type of play mat for our brand as it ticks all the boxes of what makes a good play mat above for your best purchase.

    Best Play Mat Australia

    Our 'Whimsical Woodlandplay mat provides you a close-up glimpse of the whimsical world hiding deep within the woods.

    foam baby play mat

    'Outback Adventureis our latest design that takes you on a journey through the wondrous landscapes of Australian and the beautiful animals that we share with it.

    Price:  $189 (200 cm x 140 cm)

    Our mats are:

    • Non-Toxic by complying with the highest international standard EN-71
    • Durable and Shock Absorbent by using ultra thick TPU (Thermoplastic Polyurethane) Foam. TPU is the same foam used as memory foam mattresses. The perfect material for tummy time
    • Waterproof and easy to clean, which only takes a warm damp cloth to clean up all spills with ease.
    • Portable by being able to be rolled up and stored away when not in use.
    • Designed by renowned Australian artists to create a seamless balance of bold contrasting colours and signature retro designs are perfect for supporting a baby's visual perceptual skills whilst fitting in harmoniously with your home's existing decor. 

    Baby Play Mat Google Reviews

    We are proud to display our Google 5 Star Rating.

    'We only work with the best artists, suppliers, and materials worldwide to provide play mats that are  currently enjoyed in thousands of Australian homes.' - Skye, owner of The Young Folk Collective

    foam play mat

    play mat discount code

    Other Australian Brands:

    Through our research, we have determined that the below companies are also producing amazing foam play mats that are of the same quality as ours. They are all made from polyurethane and comply with the highest non-toxic international standard EN-71, the 'gold standard' in determining the safety requirements for non-toxic materials for baby toys.

    It really comes down to the personal preference of style when choosing one of ours, or one of the companies below to create a super soft safe space for you little ones. 

    Little Wiwa

    Little Wiwa Baby Play Mat

    Price:  $179 (200 cm x 140 cm)

    What we love: 

    Little Wiwa has brought out some tremendous up-to-date Scandinavian inspired minimalistic designs with timeless aesthetics. Your baby will love to tummy time and padded play on these baby playmats!

    Soft Mats

    soft mats playmat

    Price:  $199 (185 cm x 125 cm)

    What we love: 

    Established in 2006, Soft Mats have certainly been around from the start of the revolution. Their HUGE extra large size mat of 230 cm x 140 cm makes it the biggest plat mat on the market for padded play.

    Freddy and Co

    Freddy and Co Playmat 

    Price:  $179 (200 cm x 140 cm)

    What we love: 

    Freddy and Co work closely with their Australian designer to develop distinctive prints, with each non toxic mat having an educational children's side and a decor friendly parent design. They have three educational children's designs, and you can choose your reversible designs to suit your style.

    Munchkin and Bear

    Munchkin and Bear Playmat 

    Price:  $169.95 (200 cm x 140 cm)

    What we love: 

    Munchkin and Bear certainly have a huge range of designs, with colour pallets to suit anyone's style. They are continually bringing out new styles to suit any nursery as an activity mat for tummy time and padded play.


    baby play mat Rugabub

    Price:  $189.95 (200 cm x 140 cm)

    What we love: 

    A Rugabub non toxic playmat is certainly unique with their use of striking colour schemes and textured prints, giving the illusion of a woven rug. This will give any nursery a soft looking feel whilst giving your baby a soft and squishy and waterproof environment to explore on. The best of both worlds?!

    Our list of Best Fabric Playmats to Buy in 2021 

    Rudie Nudie

    Rudie Nudie Play Mat

    Price:  $99 (130 cm x 130 cm)

    What we love: 

    Take your Rudie Nudie play mat anywhere you go with it being super lightweight. From the bed to the beach, Rudie Nudie play mats can be enjoyed anywhere. Available in three sizes to suit every age and stage, they come with a soft fabric top and a waterproof base. Our favourite part is that they are machine washable!

    Warren Hill

    Best Play Mat from Warren Hill

    Price:  $154.95 (115 cm diameter)

    What we love: 

    Warren Hill play mats are made from high-quality French Flax linen and are stonewashed to make them luxuriously soft from the first time your little one lays upon it, which is great for the whole family. Our favourite part is that for each play mat sold, ten trees are planted through their charity partner.

    Marmalade Lion

    Best Play Mat Australia Marmalade Lion

    Price:  $239 (150 cm diameter)

    What we love: 

    Marmalade Lion super play mats are the perfect activity mats for tea parties, napping, and rough 'n tumble time. They are super comfortable due to their ultra thick soft memory foam core. We like how they have a removable waterproof cover that can go straight into the washing mashing. The best thing is that they do sell the covers separately which allows you to change up the designs!

    Bella Buttercup

    Baby Play Mat for Bella Buttercup

    Price:  $80 (110 cm diameter)

    What we love: 

    A soft cushioned surface makes them ideal activity mats for tummy time, nappy-off time and when your baby is learning to sit and roll. We love that it is machine washable which will clean up any mess!

    play mat discount code