Kids need car seats. Of all the safety products parents purchase, none is as critical as a baby car seat or a toddler car seat. That’s true whether parents are outfitting their own ride, taking a toddler in a taxi, or taking a baby on a road trip in a rental. Car seats simply are not optional. Unfortunately, that doesn’t making figuring out which one to buy or installing one in a car any easier. There’s so much to be aware of (and worry about) when it comes to car seats, that it can all get a bit overwhelming. What are the best car seat covers? Can a kid wear a jacket in a car seat? Which way should the seat face? These are all answerable questions, but it’s hard to retain all that information.
For what it’s worth, that’s why this page exists. Fatherly has spoken to the experts and the manufacturers and ludicrous number of parents. Here’s what you need need to know about everything from car seat headrests to convertible car seats to car seat strollers — all the stuff you have to be aware of to keep your kid safe on the road.