The best and safest pacifiers for babies and toddlers

Pacifiers are likely to be part of your baby’s life at some point or another. For parents who prefer not to give their baby bottles or breastfeed at bedtime (or are trying to wean from it), they’re even more likely. (But don’t expect every baby to take one — some simply don’t like them, no matter their shape or what type of sweetener you put on them.) However, for most babies, they’re a favorite soothing device, which are acceptable until between ages 2 and 4 when parents are encouraged to wean their littles from the pacifier to avoid possible dental problems.

So if you want to try one out, which are best for your baby? We did a little digging and found some great options for you. Let’s get started:

Philips Avent Soothie Pacifiers

The #1 favorite among doctors, parents, and personal friends we surveyed, hands-down, is this pacifier. The Avent Soothie pacifier made by Philips is the most frequently distributed in hospitals nationwide, recommended by the most medical professionals, and are made of hospital-grade, BPA-free, latex-free silicone. They are orthodontic, meaning they’re created to stay aligned with babies’ natural mouth development, and their solid, one-piece construction keeps things simple and makes them easy for little ones to grasp. Toss them in the dishwasher or sterilize as you wish. Pay attention to the sizes listed on packages before you purchase to make sure you’re buying the right one for your baby. Get a Philips Avent Soothie 0-3 months, green, 2-pack, here for $4.

WubbaNub Elephant Pacifier

If your baby won’t take the Avent Soothie on its own, they might take it with this friendly plush elephant attached for a hug. You’ll find these given out in hospital NICU and other baby units throughout the United States. Also BPA, PVC, latex, and phthalate-free, the cuddly WubbaNub Elephant Pacifier comes in a patented one piece, which is easy for babies to grab. The pacifier itself is made of only medical-grade silicone.

Best for babies aged birth to 6 months; not recommended for babies during periods of teething. Keep it clean by washing the pacifier with warm, soapy water, and spot-clean the elephant with a warm sponge. If you need a more thorough washing, toss it into a mesh laundry bag and wash it in the washing machine, but remember to keep it on the gentle cycle if you can.

Get your baby a WubbaNub Elephant Pacifier here for $14. (Prefer something other than an elephant? They also have WubbaNub Giraffe Pacifiers, as well as Moose, Monkeys, Puppies, and more.)

Ryan and Rose Cutie PAT Pacifier

For babies who have started teething (or you anticipate them starting soon), this simple pacifier/teether combo should do the trick! There are options available with this brand, depending upon your child’s oral development.

Get a stage 1 Cutie PAT if your baby doesn’t have teeth yet. Stage 2 Cutie PATs are for babies with teeth already, or those currently teething. Both stages offer a perfect paci, free of latex, phthalates, BPA, and PVC, and the nipple is naturally shaped to feel similar to the breast, so breastfed babies can easily adjust. FDA-approved and comprising 100% medical grade silicone, these can either be sterilized or cleaned in the dishwasher for added convenience. Can be attached to pacifier clips that are CPSIA compliant.

Available in 19 different colors (grab a few if you’ve got outfits for special occasions to match!) as well as 2 stages, a flat nipple pacifier, and a starter kit (containing one of each: stage 1, a stage 2, and a flat nipple pacifier). Get your Ryan and Rose Cutie PAT Pacifier, stage 1, here for $12.

BIBS BPA-Free Natural Rubber Baby Pacifier (4-Pack)

Originally created by the Bibs company in Esbjerg, Denmark 40 years ago, these classic pacifiers are among the most popular 100% natural rubber pacifiers on the modern day globe. Some may have an engraved or raised logo of the company along the pacifier’s ring. Excellent for weaning from breastfeeding, these pacis have 100% rubber nipples, and are super soft to touch — a reminder of mother’s skin as babies relax and fall asleep. As you may have guessed, these are also free of phthlates, and PVC (in addition to BPA).

Also available in packs of 4 for babies 6-18 months old, as well as 18-36 months old, in a variety of stylish vintage color combinations like iron, wine, sand, and chestnut; mint, white, peach, and mocha; hunter green, mustard, peach, vanilla; turquoise, strawberry, pineapple, pear; and cloud, blush, sage, and ivory.

Get your BIBS BPA-Free Natural Rubber Baby Pacifier (4-Pack; colors of this pack are rust, hunter green, white, dark oak; best for ages 0-6 months) here for $28.

(Previous customers expressed these are worth the extra spendiness, especially for parents having trouble weaning from breastfeeding or having trouble taking a paci at all).

Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Moda Baby Pacifier, 2 Count

Another stylish option, these BPA-free pacifiers are designed to encourage baby acceptance (and it works — babies who have refused many other brands will take a paci from Tommee Tippee!) and have symmetrical reversible nipples to help babies get them into their mouths.

Made by Tommee Tippee, originally of the UK with a growing popularity in the U.S.,  these are available in a wide array of attractive designs which may vary with each order. Choose whether you’d prefer a set for babies aged 0-6 months or for 6-18 months.  Get your Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Moda Baby Pacifier, 0-6 months, 2 Count here for $11.

There are a few to start off with, so go ahead and select one based on your baby’s age and preferences — as well as your design and color combination tastes. Some parents find their child resists the pacifier at first, especially if they’ve grown accustomed to breastfeeding, but don’t lose hope — there are at least 2 options above designed to solve that exact problem! We read many reviews stating they did just that, too. Let us know what you think if you purchase it as well!

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