Pretty soon after I received my first subscription box of toys from Lovevery (reviewed here), and saw how quality their toys were, I decided to go ahead and splurge on the Lovevery Play Gym. We were borrowing a small standard play mat (like this one) from a friend but Emi was soon outgrowing it. And even though the price of this Lovevery playmat is more than double a standard one you can find on Amazon, I don’t regret the purchase one bit (tbh if I used to splurge on Elizabeth Suzann for myself, this playmat is only a fraction of their prices and Emi uses this for hours a day—so worth it).
First of all, I really like the material of the mat. It’s smooth and cool to the touch, and it’s easy to keep clean since drool doesn’t just soak right in (of course it does a bit but I’m able to blot most of it out). And it’s also super easy to wash—just throw into the washing machine and dryer (they have cleaning instructions both on their website and their Insta). I also love the different zones at the edges of the mat. It’s especially useful for tummy time, with our current favorites being the “how things feel” and the “making sounds” zones. The “making sounds” zone was also great when Emi started learning that her actions can cause reactions (ie kicking to make noise or making a balloon bob). The “learning to focus” zone (the one with the pictures) is also awesome because it grows with your child. We started with the black and white images, and now we’re using the mirror and the face pictures (all included with the set). She’s still a little two young for the other two zones but I can’t wait until we can start using those too. We basically keep all the zones open to maximize space on the mat so that she has room to roll over (which is basically impossible for her on a standard sized mat).
I also really love the sturdy wooden arms. They’re super lightweight and designed well so you never have to worry about the bars falling on top of her. In fact with the standard mats, with the flexible tubing arms, she can pull the toys all the ways down now and I could see her getting entangled in some of the longer ones. And in another review I read about this mat, the mother liked it because the arms wouldn’t collapse onto the baby if any of her older kids happened to put their weight on it. Oh and the arms were super easy to put together.
The only negative thing I would say about this mat is that the toys it comes with was not super engaging to her. They’re almost a little too abstract and doesn’t hold her attention. Or maybe it’s because we started her off with toys that have all the bells and whistles (like it only takes a slight pull to get a good rattle sound or it has a ring that makes it super easy to grab onto) so she’s used to that. We ended up switching out the toys that it came with some of the toys we already had (like this one which she loooves). But we will continue to introduce the Lovevery toys to her and see if she takes to them at a later age.
Oh and I can’t wait to turn this into a tent/fort for her when she gets older. Kids always love a little enclosed space and this comes with the play mat.
Finally, even though this play mat is quite expensive at $140, once you’re done with it you can sell it on ebay. I’ve seen them go for $80-$100 used. So for over a year of use (maybe even two), you can be looking at $40-$60 which is pretty good.
So if you’re looking for a really quality play gym and activity mat, and are willing to do the leg work to sell it after, I think this Lovevery version is 100% worth it. I purchased mine through Amazon here, but if you want $10 off, you can purchase it from Lovevery through my referral link here (and thanks for the support!).