M&B Awards blog: What’s been your favourite?

What baby product have you loved?  And what was the one you really wanted that got away?

When I first coordinated the product testing for the Mother & Baby Awards I really wanted to be a tester too. My youngest child, at three, was surely just young enough to test some of the products?  However, he was well beyond nappies, pushchairs, feeding products and baby toys.  So how could I join in the fun and the experience? I was suffering a case of ‘baby product envy’ and let’s face it I was also hoping for a freebie.

It is always a touchy subject. Is it right that testers should expect to get something free for all the trouble they go to? Especially when it might mean transporting bulky highchairs, cots and travel systems from one mummy friend’s house to another while they share these products between them for testing? The other niggle is with courier companies. Waiting at home all day for things to arrive is inconvenient enough but when it comes to giving them back at the end…. especially when you’ve loved a particular product and you really don’t want to let it go!

Hopefully, the fun had from trying out lots of new baby products is enough to ease the inconvenience. I sometimes suspect that some of the mums who have tested for me over the past seven years keep on having babies just to be able to go on testing!

I love to know:

What were the products you’ve bought because they had won a Mother & Baby Award?

What were the products you got to keep and how have stood up to the rigours of daily use since testing was over?

Which items were so good that you went out to buy again or recommended to your friends?

What has been loved and possibly passed on to somebody else now that your own baby has outgrown it?

What product did you test or award winner that you bought that most surprised you?

And lastly, what was that fabulous one that got away?

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63 thoughts on “M&B Awards blog: What’s been your favourite?

  1. I’ve never tested anything before for the M&B awards but when buying new baby products I have been slightly swayed more towards one with the logo on saying if its won a award. That way I know its been tested by a Mother like me and gave it her thumbs up! 🙂

  2. before I had even known about the awards, my husband always went by the mother and baby gold award. We purchased our baby monitor after my husband read that it has baby gold award.
    I was lucky enough to be a group tester leader last year and got to test group 0 car seats.
    I rewarded the recaro one the best, my sister is having a baby in a few months and her husband is into cars and recaro is the only one that he would buy, so i have passed the seat down to them.
    I am expecting my 2nd and we are going to use the izi sleep car seat with our new one as it is compatible with my bugaboo bee and is alot more padded than my maxi cosi seat.
    We also tested the britax seat which everyone loved and my friend was so pleased with it that she has only just upgraded to the next seat and stayed with the britax brand.

  3. I tend to read the M&B awards and advice guides before I make any significant purchase for my little ones, ultimately they steer me towards going to have a play to make my own mind up, though its usually a while before i make the final decision.

    My child was gifted a softly snail snuggle time play mat and gym, and it has stood up to his punishment really really well. He loves it! One of my big concerns when I was first testing it was how washable it was, but Im thrilled to report that its lost no colour and it hasnt worn, even though its washed with great frequency. It is also the product I reccomended most, though we also recommended Pico the puppet to many friends, and bought a few as gifts too !

    I really thought the snuggly snail gym should have won last year, I was really surprised that it didnt. I guess the price point was maybe just a little too high, but it really is a gorgeous, high quality, multifunction product, which has lasted so well.

  4. I tested last year, i have sung the praise of the Medala Swing to anyone i could. I loved it and would never of tried it had I not tested it. I was really surpriesd how well it worked for me in the begining, as most pumps never worked for me.
    I also used the cloth nappies untill life got ahead of me and i had to quit or go crazy, I passed them all on to a friend who is using them with her toddler and loves them as much as i did.

    I do tend to look for the awards logo when I buy baby stuff.

    alas Henri is my last baby so my testing days are numbered

    Krystie

  5. I tested BumGenius nappies for M&B with my second baby. I used reusable nappies for my first baby so had plenty and probably wouldn’t have tried a new brand had it not been for being involved in testing. They quickly became my favourite nappy and are still going strong on number three!

  6. I was a group test leader last year for the first time and tested the travel products. I’ll admit I would of loved to have tested car seats or pushchairs but still got excited waiting to see what was going to come to my door.
    My favourite(and my daughters) had to be the car seat warmer, it’s like a liner that warms up and was great over the winter and made me feel less guilty about having the heated seat on in the front.

  7. I was lucky to test breastfeeding products last year and absolutely love my flopeze pillow. I was really surprised to find it hadn’t won an award. This is my 3rd baby and I wish I had discovered it first time.
    I also love my avent electric breast pump and was chuffed to bits when i found out I was testing it as I had always loved the avent manual ones…and yes I recommend it to everyone.
    Loving everyones replies…

  8. Testing for the Mother & Baby awards last year was a brilliant experience and a busy one too!! I tested pushchairs and breastfeeding products and was lucky enough to keep a few items. Among the firm favourites were the Maclaren Techno XT – I was blown away by this pushchair and ironically it was the once I was looking forward to testing the least! It has been given quite a bit of ‘hammer’ since the testing ended and it’s standing it well. I recommend it to mums regularly along with the Mothercare My4 which again was fantastic – superb value for money and it knocked the spots off a much more expensive pushchair I was testing. From the breastfeeding products the Medela Swing pump was fab and I have just started to use it again since having my third baby last month.

  9. I tested bath products last year and loved every moment. the best ones were the cuddledry towel, what a great idea this is, its a long towel that does up around your neck to give you hands free access to bath your baby and get them out of the bath using two hands and not having to juggle a towel aswell. I have bought 3 of my friends these as presents for there babys.
    Also the washpod was brilliant when you first see it,it looks just like a bucket and you think it lokks uncomfortable but my son loved it. Its for babys age 0-6 months but as i had a big baby it only lasted him till he was 4months, iwas gutted when he grew out of it but i passed it on to my cousin who thinks it great. the idea of it is that they are in there up to just below the shoulders so they don’t get cold they can’t slip they are comfortable as they sit in a sort of fetale position.Its saves water as you don’t need alot of water, I really did’nt think i would like it but it was the best.

  10. I tested travel product last year and myself, my children, children I look after and their parents all had a great time testing the products. I wasn’t sure what i was letting myself in for when i got offered the chance to test. however it was great fun, the children were all so excited to be involved {although they just played with the items}
    When purchasing an item I look at value for money and products that have been recommened to me by people/companies, never before have I had time to try the product out and see it for what it is good or not so good. So it was great to be one of many tester putting information out their for other parents/ carers, who couldn’t test before buying!
    My favourite was the Trunki tiger ride on suitcase, it was fab and we still use it today, we recently went on hoilday in the caravan and when packing , it was great to have clothes packed in the suitcase, and at the same time a ride on toy for the children! fab
    I now buy mother and baby magazine for advice on products, as I have tested I know how it works and that products are tested well by many different people and I value their input!

  11. i tested the easy change mat last year along with other newborn products and this is a fantastic item, it is cleanable and doesnt crack i did not think i would be excited by a change mat, but when i actually used this product it is simply superb and it stands the test of 1 year constant use and is like new
    it is such fun being a tester, ive had many conversations at our local toddler group about the products. everyone thinks in different ways so it is very interesting hearing their views!
    the mother and baby awards are about the only trusted way to know if a product is easy to use as real mums have tried them out and properly reviewed them

  12. I tested bath products I found the halo and horns to be really fab and effective, they made my babies skin feel lovely, I even told my friends about the products and some of them went and bought them to try.

  13. I got to test changing bags last year and still use and love my yummy mummy pink lining changing bag. I always get lovely comments about it. My little girl is nearly one and because I have used it since she was tiny, she now recognises it as ‘her’ bag. I found her the other day rooting through it and she bought out a pouch of baby food followed by a spoon from it. It was her way of telling me she was hungry!

  14. I have tested a few products, some i loved, some i hated.. I particularly liked the cribs and moses baskets that were small and compact.. Living in London, almost all houses are small and its always better to get baby bits that are compact..

    I check to see if products have had awards before i buy, gives me confidence in an item knowing a mother/father has tested it and approved it. I have 3 very young children so as you can all imagine, my house is full of baby and toddler products..

    One of the best products i tested was the Cariboo classic crib. Realy loved it.

  15. I tested portable travel products which were potties and it was an experience and was fab as we have used up all the liners for the portable potty which also acts as a seat to fit on any adult seat and it’s amazing.
    I love getting M&B magazine and even though I now have a toddler I still continue to buy it and will carry on especially now we have a new edition on the way. I love hearing what new products are out there and what other mums and dads think of them and must admit to buying a couple bits on other parents recommendations.
    🙂

  16. Of the products I have tested (and i love testing for M&B … and yes its true about having more babies just for the testing 😉 ) the one that we all still love is the ladybird wheely bug! It is just such a beautiful toy to look at and so well crafted. We really put it through the rigours of testing with friends and relatives and it still looks as good as the day it arrived! The best thing is we got to keep it and it has given so much joy to my children …… even my eldest (8) likes sitting on it to watch tv!!!!

    The other product that I tell everyone to buy is the Bibetta Ultrabibs. The company that makes them is fantastic (I have been in touch with them since about various products and suggestions) and the bibs really are the best you can get! I still use the ones from testing 2 years ago, they have gone through 2 of my children and each time wash up like new. Any mums out there.. if you haven’t tried them, check them out!

  17. I tested travel products last year and by far the best thing I have tested is the potette plus it is fab. It is quite discreet to carry around and can be put together in seconds. It can be used every where. It is now kept in my boot in case we are ever caught short. 🙂

  18. I tested baby monitors and with our youngest now coming up for 17 months, I’ve just passed my favourite one, the Summer Video Monitor one, onto a friend who’s just had her first. The others were all distributed amongst my tester panel – luckily they all seemed to like a different one. Having tested the products I’d say I’m even more likely to look out for the mark that says they’ve won an award. Knowing how well we tested ours I’m sure other mums are equally as “hard” on the products.

  19. I was also fortunate enough to test breastfeeding products last year. I loved the Flopeze pillow. It was fantastic & so versatile and all my friends loved it too. I am only now having to pass it on but it will be sorely missed. I agree with a previous poster – can’t understand why it didn’t get an award.

    The Avent electric breastpump was great – made expressing a joy (if that’s possible!) rather than a chore. I feel extremely lucky to have been able to keep it as they can be a little expensive when you are on a budget.

    I would have loved to try the toys or a trunki but I’m not complaining.

    I find the awards really useful and they influence my decisions. I bought a potette based on reviews & I am sure there are other things as well (but baby brain prevents me from remembering).

  20. I was lucky enough to test skincare products and received some wonderful brands but by far the one I loved the most, and am still using today, is Green People babies range. The products are organic and there are no nasty chemicals. The Lavender shampoo and body wash is divine.

    I always look to either the Mother & Baby website or look for the symbol when I am looking to purchase new products. I like having confidence in knowing that its been tested by other mums.

  21. I was lucky enough to test twins and tandems buggies last year… despite my husbands not so favourable reaction when I told him there would be 3 double buggies (and their huge boxes) in the garage for several months…!! And I had only just had a baby 4 weeks earlier a little sister for my 19 month old when the first buggy arrived. A busy time!
    I got the Baby Jogger City Mini Twin – and I still use it now a year later. I love it love it love it! It won the award, and certainly has withstood a lot of abuse from my 2 little ones over this time. We have had a lot of good times with it, and now my daughter is nearly one and my son is 2 1/2 we still use it loads and probably will for another year or so. I loved doing the testing despite the space they took up (husband swallowed his words as he loves the baby jogger too) and hope to do it again this year.

    • Hi, at last I’ve found someone with the baby Jogger City mini twin. Can I ask a question – how small does it collapse to? Is there any chance do you think I’d get it in my new style mini? Cheers.

      • Hi Keily
        Unfortunately I don’t know if it would fit in a mini… but if it helps one of the other testers fit it in her Ford Ka! It had to stand ‘upright’ without the parcelshelf but otherwise fit just fine – much better than her umbrella fold twin buggy which she had to put in the footwells. It is more wide and flat when folded – worth taking your car to a shop which sells them to try it out in your boot!

  22. I tested pushchairs for the M&B Awards last year and was unbelievably excited!
    I had wanted to buy the Britax Vigour pram for quite a few months, but could never quite save up enough, so when I discovered it was one of the items I was going to test I was over the moon! It lived up to all of my expectations and is a fantastic pram. I even enjoyed filling in all of the forms as I got to be politely analytical about some of the products.
    I hadn’t really specifically looked for the M&B logo before testing, but now that I have been a part of it, I find that I will look at things just because it has the logo!

  23. Last year was my first time as a M & B tester (fingers crossed I get to test again this year) and I loved it my other half was sick of hearing about it by the end as thats all I spoke about. I had travel products & babycare products to test and thought all te products were great. My two favourite items were the Mothercare travel steriliser and the Super Soft Fruity hand and face wipes. We still use the steriliser now when we go away as its easy to store and is compact. We buy the wipes regularly as they smell absolutely gorgeous and leave you smelling lovely (yes we use them too when its hot and sticky). I have recommended these to all my friends with small children.
    When buying products I always buy ones that have been tested and are awarded by M & B, I know then that I’m getting a real product that has been tested by parents, I used to hate wasting money on things that didnt do the job properly.

  24. i tested a mix of items last year, i was very lucky as i got to keep all of them. I tested potties, these were brilliant fun for my little won and i am sure they aided her potty training having one in each room in the house!! I have kept these for when my younger son is ready, however i am unsure he will like the pink??
    i have kept the book case in our daughters room and we love this, we are going to invest in one for sons room when he is a little older.
    I also tested 2 activity stations, both were fab and have been passed on to my childminder, she uses them for various children and they have not shown any signs of wear and tear at all. they were the leapfrog learn and groove and the mothercare activity station.
    I also had a cot bumper (air wrap), a mothercare walker and sophie the squeeky giraffe, these have all been passed ontot he friends who helped me to test the products. As my children grow out of the products i plan to pass them all onto the friends who helped me.
    I would love to test again, its a fantastic opportunity to give something back by way of honest reviews from ‘real’ Mums who use the products on a daily basis.
    Thanks to Mother and Baby and to Jessica for my opportunity to be involved

    • We loved Sophie Le Giraffe, she was a firm but very unexpected favourite. She looks like a toy you’d buy with pocket money from the zoo, but she is amazing and lovely, now firmly a treasured toy. Our sophie can’t be passed on as she’s loved too much

  25. I’ve been lucky enough to test a few great things for Mother and Baby awards and the fun of testing certainly more than makes up for any inconvenience of waiting in for couriers and arranging a group of mums to test! The most useful as a first time mum was testing the Breastfeeding products and I’m another who raves about the medela swing pump – it saved my sanity and has helped another friend keep going with Breast feeding – I have just dusted it down for the imminent arrival of baby no 3!!

    Last year we tested toddlers toys which was fantastic fun and meant my boys could really be involved and have a say! Our favourite was the Wheelybug which is a testament to its build quality as it is still played with constantly by my now 2 and 3 year olds as well as every child visitor to the house – yet it still looks good as new! It was fantastic that we were gifted this toy and the boys deseved it for all their hard playtime testing 😉

    I hope we are lucky enough to test some more products this year with our new addition – I can certainly say that Mother and Baby awards are a good sign of rigorous testing by real parents and I always eagerly await the results !

  26. M&B award winning products were always a preferred option when shopping for baby No1 – there’s so much choice (and expensive tat) on the market, it was reassuring to know these products had actually been tested by other mums. In most cases the products I did buy, I didn’t feel as if I’d wasted money on.

    I was chosen to test some travel products for the first time last year and was fortunate to be gifted some, which were split over the other mummy testers in my group. I kept and still use the Merino Baby Sleeping Bag, which has been an absolute godsend for our trips away and late nights. It’s been used a LOT over the last year and it’s fabulous quality, washes really well and will hopefully last him (or baby No2) another year or two.

    The Buggy Snuggle was the other item I got to keep. I didn’t think I’d get to use it, as he has a Cosytoes on his pushchair, but we use it regularly on a smaller stroller. At £35+ it seemed a bit expensive for “a blanket”, but actually for the convenience, warmth and quality I’ve recommended it to friends and have since bought another for the spare stroller kept at the parents

  27. We had a lot of fun testing last year. Whilst I wouldn’t recommend any of the toys we tested the one I/ child now owns & loves is the wheely bug. Also my kids have loved planting & growing veg so testing kiddy products in this area would be good going forward.

  28. I really enjoyed testing both the skin care category and carrier category last year – my favourite by far was the Cybex.i.go baby carrier – being a slightly paranoid person I loved the security of it. My daughter also loved it and did not get on with any of the other one’s I tested, to the point I sent a picture of her in the carrier to Mamas & Papas as she looked so happy in it.
    This is a fabulous carrier and definately value for money,
    Reccommended!!!!

  29. I have been very lucky in the past to test nappies and wipes and this experience has definately influenced my future buying habits.

    I have purchased products based on the awards recommendation…including the cuddledry towel.

    I would love to test a range of pushchairs to see if they are suitable for the beach. Living in Cornwall this would massively influence my choice of purchase and I think it would be helpful for other parents when looking for holiday options. I would particulary like to know if the babyjogger city mini or phil and ted is any good for the beach.

  30. As a Mum of a three year old boy and twin girls, i was in my total element being a tester, felt so priviledged to be one of the chosen few. Each day when my parcels arrived it felt soooo exciting!! The best baby toy that we tested was “Sophie LaGiraffe” a squeeky teether just so simple yet great, Oball was another great product, simple cheap and loved by both of my girls.

    I too have purchased products because of the awards issued.

    Thanks to Mother and Baby and to Jessica for my opportunity to be involved

  31. I’ve always looked for recommendations of how best to spend my hard-earned money on everything – not just things for my children. Knowing that someone like me has given something a rigourous check just gives me that extra bit of reassurance.

    I was a first time M&B tester last year and got to check out some fab changing bags. I had a whole bunch of friends in on the act and it made us look at other change bags in a whole new light. I kept my Wallaboo changing bag and still use it almost every day. It’s looking good still and matches my buggy which is a bonus! I also liked the Yummy Mummy Pink Lining bag and passed it onto another of my testing panel. When I see her using it, it makes me feel glad that we all got involved in the exercise.

    I think our next purchase is going to be a Trunki… such great reviews from like-minded parents means I can hardly go wrong!

  32. I am a big believer in sharing, sharing ideas and opinions especially! I loved testing for Mother and Baby. I relished the excuse to get together and have a natter and I know now that the genuine feedback given by testers comes from a lot of time and care.

    I tested travel cots last year and hope for something equally as adventurous this year! I am really keen to test travel systems and double buggies! Bting on the challenge!

    Louise x

  33. I was lucky enough to test reuseable nappies. I already used reuseables so it was interesting to see the others brands out there. There are many to choose from and it can be confusing. I love my nappies and still use them, i also passed on a few to a friend and now she uses them daily too.
    Its good knowing you may of helped someone choose a brand too.

  34. I tried some fab products last year which I am very thankful to be chosen to do this. I must say after trying different brands of nappies I can clearly say I do prefer pampers but some of the other nappies I have never used before came up trumps with myself too. Hopefully I may be lucky this year too to be able to be a tester as I really enjoyed doing it.

  35. I always read the awards and go for the winners as i know they have been tested by other mums. I think it helps alot. I tested nappies and wipes last year and have stuck to the nappies and wipes i felt best from the prouduct testing x

  36. I tested stair gates and got to keep them only thing is I had all the gates that I needed before :(. But can pass them on.
    I did test the fun pod this was good for my 1 year old (at the time) and 2 year old. As one small one on a chair was fine but when you have 2 it is hard to keep your eye on them. They have gone back to chairs again now as don’t like to be in it together. But they did love it and still do. My 20 month old spends most of the time trying to claim in it when I am in the kitchen.

  37. we tested a fantastic potty last year (fisher price- my potty). my daughter loved it. it looked like a mini version of our toilet with the added affect that when she did he business on it, it played her a little tune. i definately think this potty helped her potty train as quick as she did. At first i brought a couple of sheep different potties which she’d use but wasnt fun, when she had the my potty she couldnt wait to use it!!!!

  38. I tested weaning products last year and loved every minute of it……………my son is partially sighted and we found the perfect bowl and cup for him and we got to keep all of the products……… the tommee tippee cups are going strong even now after a year of the dishwasher. I would say that a M&B award would sway me towards buying an item particularily as i know how hard i was on the items i was sent to text and have recommended items to other based on this also.

    Thankyou to Jessica for the opportunity last year…………. we would love to do it all again this year especially seeing as we have an new little one and an adventurous toddler aswell lol………

    Lisa x

  39. I tested some nursery products last year and some were good and some not so good but I cannot rate the night light highly enough. Its the one that doubles up as a torch. FANTASTIC. My ds uses it every night and occassionally when I forget to charge it my ds creates a merry song and dance!!!! I also tested a fantastic potty chair which won the best nursery product catagory. Unfortunetely my ds still isnt using it properly but loves to read books while sitting on it as its the right size and clearly very comfy on his botty!!! I love these awards as its a fab way to test products that you wouldnt natuarally go out and buy. I AWAYS read up on reviews before I purchase anything for my little men so this is a great way to help others find that fantastic product just like so many other mums who have tested products have help me. If you havent tested before I would recommend it 🙂 Fingers crossed I get chosen again this year 🙂

  40. I tested breast-feeding products last year. I tested some bottles from MAM which were supposed to be really good for babies moving from boob to bottle and I was totally won over. Our transition to the bottle was long and slow (just how I wanted) and the MAM bottles made it really easy. I have since become a MAM convert! I also tested the Floppeze nursing pillow which is my absolute favourite item – I reviewed it in more detail on my blog Mellow Mummy.

    I also really liked one of the breast pumps I tried and have recommended it to lots of people. The Mipump was not a product I’d heard of before but I felt it beat the others in its category hands-down.

  41. I tested highchairs two years ago – for the testing period and beyond that’s all my family talked about!!! Everyone was involved (we’ve 9 babies/toddlers in the family alone!!!) Everyone (especially the men!) took their role very seriously and even nowadays when a new highchair comes on the market, the pros and cons are debated!!! For the record, my favourite was the Inglesina Zuma – we even purchased this at a reduced price after testing (although just prior to testing we’d bought a tripp trapp – oops I was popular with my husband ;o) )! Baby number two has just started weaning and he’s loving the Zuma too!

    The awards are a great idea and products that gain an award really have a mark of quality as they are tested by the people who matter – the people who know best! I’ve previously bought a cot based on the product having won an award.

  42. I have tested for mother and baby puschairs 2 years ago , I bought the Maxi Cosi Mura 4 that I tested as we loved it so much, It is a heavy pushchair but as i lived in a rual area this was brilliant, my son is now 3 and we still use it most days and it still looks new and very stable. we also tested the Mamas and Papas skate and this was also a very good pushchair/pram and stood up well to my gravel drive, wheels didnt get caught which supprised me.
    I also tested feeding products and the bibitta bibs are a brilliant product my son even put them through the Tomoto soup stain test, but always washes out without fail – loved it so did my son!!
    I can say without doubt that as my friends and myself have either seen or been involved with testing we have all purchased M&B awards products because we know that they have been tested truthfully for us.
    I have always used huggies wipes since my daugher was born(now 6) but with my son i found Nature herbal wipes really good (and only £1.99 per pack), of the same texture and strength but with a natural herbal smell – very plesent.
    Thanks to Jessica we can give our comments on products for other mums to see and trust.

  43. I tested the disposable nappies and wipes last year and I have comtinued to use the Clearly Herbal bamboo wipes. I think these made it into the top 3. They are so lovely, they don’t leave my son sore and they clean all the muck away really well, they also smell divine. Even my 5 year old daughter has to use them, they cost a little bit more than normal wipes however they are worth every penny more, and the fact they are degradable makes me very happy knowing I’m doing something good for the environment 😀
    Although I have never bought anything that was given the gold seal I do look at all the winners and do a lot of research before buying things, it’s good to know other mums have really given these products a good going over and they are honest reliable reviews.

  44. I was lucky enough to test sleep aids for newborns and my most favoutite product was the swaddleme blanket by kiddopotamus. I would highly recommend it to all mums with a newborn baby. As alot of us mums know newborn babies love to be swaddled up for sleeping and although a small blanket works babies usually end up wiggling out of it. The swaddleme blanket it designed so that it fits your baby perfectly and it has velcro tabs so that your baby can’t wiggle out of it. My daughter slept so much better using this product and I have since bought it for friends as a newborn baby present. It’s also made from 100% organic cotton and has a really fun floral design on it. This product is a must!

    • I didnt test these but used them for both of my daughters and they are the best product i ever had for babies. They were a god send and had my little ones sleeping so well. Highly recommended

  45. I was lucky to test last year and had toys, myself and all my friends who tested with me gave a big thumbs to the Marks and Spencers jigsaws, they were fun, bright, educational, interactuve, well made, cam ein a strong box – why do all children insist on standing on the box?? – but best of all they only cost £5, I think i have given one as a gift to every party my children have been to since!

  46. I have tested for the last two years, the first year I tested breastfeeding products (MEDELA SWING WAS AMAZING) and last year I tested travel products, my favourite travel products were the brother max milk powder dispenser (still using to this day) and the BAXX shoulder bag & playcloth tango http://www.thatcuteage.com/p1852-Baxx-Shoulder-Bag-Playcloth-Tango

    I actually didnt rate this when testing but i continued to use it for different things, playgroups, holidays etc. Its great for going to the park and having the picnic on or going to the beach.

    This year i hope to test again and this time it would be great do group testing with all the mums from the playgroup that i run as a volunteer in my local sure start centre as i know they would thoroughly enjoy it.

  47. I tested toys a few years ago… I can’t remember what toys we tested, but got to keep all of them and shared them out with the other testers afterwards… we were left with a Little Tykes toy checkout with scanning food, which I had rated rather badly as it was hugley overpriced for what it was, and my eldest (then about 2) was frightened it because it was so loud it made her cry.
    But 4 years on my youngest (age 1) can’t get enough of it and loves scanning the food and singing the songs… it has lasted very well and looks the same as the day we received it, and never needed new batteries yet, so perhaps it should have gotten a better rating…

  48. I tested cots last year.
    the amby nature nest got our top marks as of the 5 friends who tested it with me FOUR of them their babies slept through with this. we were astounded that something so simple would work wonders. this has also now done 2 children (its up to 6 months) and is in the loft waiting for my next baby!

    i would love to test again this year as it would be brilliant to find another surprising product like that. theres nothing like getting a review from a mum to help you choose what to buy there is such a huge choice out there it can get overwhelming!

  49. Last year i was lucky enough to be chosen as a tester and i tested travel products. I loved being a tester and have several products i still use now on a regular basis my two faves were the mam dummy pod which i have found a real saviour when out and about as i don’t have to scramble around in a full changing bag when my tired little boy is crying for his ‘nonnie’ as he calls it. It’s also great for days at the beach when sand gets EVERYWHERE but his dummies stay nice and clean ready for use!!
    The other was the Melobaby All-In-One Nappy Wallet which has all the features of a changing bag but takes a tenth of the space it has been invauable for us as we travel by train alot to visit family and so having everything to hand but taking up very little space it has been great.
    I loved being a tester even filling in all the forms as i got to praise the products i liked and give honest opinions on the ones that weren’t so great, i liked the thought that maybe my opinions might help undecided parents make a choice which could save them time and money which is very important when you have little ones.

  50. I was lucky enough to be chosen for puhchair testing last year, I was lucky enough to be allowed to keep some of my pushchairs, so gave them to some of the mum’s in my testing group. Even though I had the pick of all of the pushchairs, I chose to keep the cheepest out of my testing group- the Britax 3+. For many reasons this pushchair has been a godsend. My baby girl has had many a comfortable day out and it has honestly been a pleasure to use. A friend recently asked me about my ‘new’ pram…she was shocked when I told her that it had been though 7 testers and had had a years FULL use ove all terrains. I have been lucky enough to test pushchairs again this year and am contemplating replacing my Vigour 3 + with the new Britax BSmart 4 which I have to say is even better!! It seems to have picked up on all the minor glitches that I have picked up on and fixed them!! As I have been so lucky I have decided that I will give my Vigour 3+ to my friend, so that she can get some enjoyment out of it.

  51. Hi there my name is Carla Thomson I run a review site on baby monitors. I was just wondering if you would like to participate in a link exchange between our 2 sites. I will look forward to your reply.

    Take care.

    Carla.

  52. I really enjoy reading Testing times ahead this summer… On the one hand I was dealing with big, alien, life-changing decisions in the abstract – like picking a name from lists as long as my arm; to puzzling over the minuscule: ‘does the Velcro fasten at the back or front of a nappy?’

    As a baby-novice it is all too easy to get swept along into panic buying. You only have to hold up a tiny, newborn babygro and wonder how anyone can be that small and apparently need the entire contents of your local branch of Mothercare.

    The truth is that the world won’t implode if you forget to pack scratch mittens in your hospital bag or you bought a first stage car seat that doesn’t fit with your pushchair to make it into a Travel System.

    If I could roll back the clock, start all over again, I’d make some smarter choices for sure. In my day – I sound so old – but just over a decade ago the pram / pushchair choice was little broader than either grandma’s pastel frilly knickers or plain and serviceable navy blue.

    I don’t remember anything that was stylish, gadget-clever or really innovative and there was ‘zero’ on the market to make ‘mummies’ feel even a tiny bit ‘yummy’.

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