Our team is dedicated to finding and telling you more about the web’s best products. If you purchase through our links, we may receive a commission. Our editorial team is independent and only endorses products we believe in.
Let’s talk about car seats. Considering you can’t leave the hospital – or go anywhere for that matter– without one, a car seat is arguably the most important purchase for any new parent.
But with so many to choose from, picking the right infant car seat paralyzed me. Anxious about finding the “right” one. I made my husband spend hours on Consumer Reports, looking up safety ratings, reviews, and any other information to guide me. I asked every single mom friend I know what car seat they used and spent months thinking about it.
I’d heard about Doona in passing, but since it didn’t exist when I had my first two daughters, I didn't think twice about it. I assumed I’d use the same car seat I previously used. Slowly though, I started noticing almost everyone who had an infant car seat had a Doona. And I mean everyone – friends, celebrities, influencers, random people on the street.
My interest piqued; was Doona the way to go? I had to find out… and I wasn't disappointed. Keep reading to find out why both my husband and I feel like Doona is a must for your new baby.
- Incredibly safe (this is my number 1 priority)
- Convenient for on-the-go parenting
- Easy to use
We don't like
- Heavy when not using the wheels
- Bulky enough to make tight parking spots an issue
- No built-in storage, just additional purchase options
Don’t Pass On Doona
With a seven-year age gap between my middle daughter and younger daughter, there have been a lot of new baby inventions since my last go-around. Doona is hands down the one new item that’s made parenting on-the-go so much easier.The Doona car seat (from $550) not only excited me, but also my usually even-keeled husband, who's now raving to other parents. I’d walk in on conversations of him explaining to them why he wished he had this car seat with our older two daughters—and I couldn’t agree more.
Safety was my number one priority when it came to finding a carseat, but I wasn’t sure what to look out for. So I reached out to a specialist. “The US has a Pass/Fail system, so any car seat on the market is safe. It doesn't matter if you spend $700 or $70, the safest car seat is the one that's life stage appropriate and installed correctly,” says Liz Humphrey, a Child Passenger Safety Technician. “Read your car seat manual front to back a couple times. Read the child safety section of your car's manual a couple times.”
Doona passes the safety tests in both the United States and in Europe and has a five-star rating from NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration). It’s also very easy to install, both with the Doona base or seatbelt. This gave me confidence that anyone who needed to drive my baby could properly install the carseat.
Other safety features I loved include the infant head support, the five point harness and the anti-rebound bar: the carseat handle is placed closest to the seat of the car to provide better impact absorption.
Doona’s Stand Out Qualities
The most exciting and unique thing about Doona is the retractable wheels that make it a car seat and stroller in one. The retractable wheels fold underneath the carseat in one easy motion – you just have to push the button in the back and it goes from stroller to car seat in seconds.
“The Doona is a good option for parents who often travel by plane, live in the city, already have children who no longer use a stroller, or babywear and don't plan on purchasing a stroller,” says Humphrey. “Also, keep in mind it is a car seat and you must follow the height and weight limits even though it acts as a stroller.”
While Doona works as an easy-on-the go stroller, it’s important to note there is no storage. That being said, Doona does offer great accessories for additional costs, including the Essentials Bag ($60) that you can connect directly to the handle. Because Doona is not designed to replace the traditional stroller, you are probably going to want to buy yourself another, more sturdy stroller in addition to the Doona.
Additionally, Doona’s handle pivots from car seat handle to stroller push bar. I never have to carry the car seat anymore; I just pop out the wheels and pivot the handle so it becomes the stroller push bar and I can push the baby anywhere. With my older two, I got bad wrist pain (mommy wrist, a type of tendonitis, is real!) from carrying the car seat inside and outside constantly.
I also love that the car seat comes fully assembled, so you don’t have to worry about putting it together wrong. You can either click the carseat into the base that comes with the stroller, or you can use a seatbelt. We traveled with the Doona to San Diego and I had no problem securing it into the car with a seatbelt, something I felt nervous to do with the car seats I had with my older two daughters. It also makes it easy for grandma to take the baby—she doesn’t need to have a base in her car, which is a plus!
Doona Is Used By Everyone… and I mean EVERYONE
Once I started thinking about car seats again, I noticed almost everyone had a Doona. When I took my older daughters to the beach, I noticed multiple people with Doonas. I even stopped some of them to ask what they thought of the carseat. The reviews were all the same; that it was the best car seat and a must-have.
And it’s not just people like you and me who have the Doona. It seems to be the go-to carseat of choice for every celebrity who is a new parent. We’re talking about some of the biggest stars in the movie, music and sports world like Jennifer Lawrence, Ed Sherran, Khloe Kardashian, Steph Curry, and many more.
Doona is More Than a Car Seat Brand
While Doona’s car seat is their best known item, the brand has other awesome products like its foldable Liki Trike (from $250), which is great for going to the park, and has a Sens Alert, a monitor to alert parents or caregivers if the child is accidentally left behind.
It is important to note that Doona is on the pricier side, but it comes with a base and is the car seat/stroller combo. I remember snap-and-go portable wheels to go with my other infant seat car seat, which added up to about the same total cost as an all-in-one Doona. Because of how easy it is to travel with kids and the fact I no longer need to struggle with lugging a car seat in and out of the car, it’s worth the price.
Doona is on the road to making parenting a bit easier, one item at a time. So don’t miss out on this amazing baby car seat you’re going to wish you had, and join the thousands of parents, including myself, who are using Doona today. Shop it here.