Mother and Baby

Joie Baby i-Level Review

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Mother&Baby Awards
  • 2020 Shortlisted Best Rear Facing Car Seat

At a glance:

A lie-flat lounger when strolling and a lie-flat for snoozes in the car, this car seat cleverly converts in an instant from cuddly carrycot to infant car seat. Suitable rearward facing from birth, the i-Level features the ultimate protection and security for your little one. For your comfort, the Joie i-Level has an ergonomic carry handle and a full body insert which can easily be removed. The removable sun canopy shades your little one and features a zip-open ventilation panel to keep them comfy in any weather. 

How did this product make your life easier?

Curstain: The i-Level Joie was incredibly easy to fit into the car. I hardly needed to look at the instructions to be able to use this product and for tired mums, that is great especially as correct fitting is essential for the safety of the seat. This seat was very well padded around my baby and although it looks restricted it would really protect my baby in a crash. The reclining feature is great and I would say I would buy this car seat for that feature alone. Babies always fall asleep in the car and I have never been able to transfer my children from car seat to cot when I got home without waking them but this feature allows me to leave them asleep in the car seat knowing they will be comfortable and not impede breathing. It was very easy to get in and out of the base and to carry. The sun shade was also well designed and easy to put up and down and it covered a lot which in a long hot summer has been essential.

Jody: The i-Level car seat and base is a great combo as there is no thinking about what base it fits with it already has it with it in the box. The Isofix base makes the installation so quick and easy and the car sit clips on and off really easy. I love how the harness and headrest grow together so there is no threading or unthreading needed and the lie flat function is great for helping baby when they are sleeping.

Katie: This product makes life easier by the way it can simply be adapted. Having two premature babies meant I spent a lot of time in the neonatal hospital wards. The nurses there were not keen on car seats that can be easily taken in and of the car. They said the position for them wasn’t good and disapproved of how babies go from the car to a pram still remaining in the same position. With the ability to recline the baby is such a bonus and makes this product really desirable. It is also assuring to know that my baby will be safe.

Would you recommend this to other mums?

Brogan: Yes 100%. I found using this was super easy with the Isofix base and had compliments on its chic style. The canopy hood is a personal favourite as I found it so useless to block out all the sun as it’s UV protection and also helps when getting caught in a quick rain shower getting to and from the car to the house.

Aurelie: I will recommend this product to a friend or fellow mum as it is suitable from birth. The Isofix base makes the system very stable and easy to adjust. It converts from infant car seat to carry cot, so you don’t need to wake up your baby if he or she is asleep. The reclining feature is really nice. The lie-flat is good for sleeping, and the other position is good when the baby is older and would not like to be flat during the day. It is a good car seat as well as travel system. The foam and padded sides are nice, as it is as a protection for newborn babies and it is removable.

Christina: The car seat has very good sun protection. The extended hood is very useful especially for babies who sleep better in less light environments. This car seat has the lie back function which is useful for parents who wish to keep their child asleep once out of the car. This car seat has the option of 3 reclines, perfect for getting baby in the position that suits them!

Would you choose this product to win?

Danielle: I would choose this product for its safety of I-size with the ISOFIX almost completely removing room for error when fitting. Therefore, this reassures me that the baby would be safe in an accident. It also looks robust which again gives me peace of mind that should we be in an accident, my baby would be well protected. But, I don't think it should win due to not having the choice of strapping the car seat in, restricting the use of the car seat and that it also doesn't fit onto some prams to use as a travel system. 

Hannah: I would choose this car seat over others thanks to the lie-flat function of the car seat and the fact that the base actually comes with the seat too. The car seat lasts longer in terms of length of the baby and is i-Size compliant which I look for in a car seat. Based on these key things I think this car seat is deserving of winning this category.

Alice: I like the lie-flat element and I like the general design of the car seat. Extra touches like leather handle put it above ‘standard’ car seats. It is slightly more expensive than most but I think worth it if it fits in your car. If your child was prone to reflux or you did a lot of long journeys when they were young I would definitely consider buying this. I don’t know how many car models it doesn’t fit flat in because I wouldn’t buy it above others without this element being of use.

What changes would you make to this product?

Sarah: The inflexibility of the padding on to expand width ways. My baby is 10 months old and the headrest, in particular, was not quite wide enough for him. It ended up squeezing his head forward in the chair. Also when placed in the chair he was unable to fit comfortably in (one arm and shoulder was forced up.) If the padding could be removed or adjusted to fit the growth of the baby it would have been amazing.

Curstain: The only thing I would consider changing is that my baby seems to be reluctant to go into this seat which she does not do with other car seats. My older seat that I had for my older child had less padding and I think she was not used to be restricted so much. This makes it much safer though so as a mother I would continue to use this as I am more concerned with safety. I think if you used it from the start the baby would be used to how it feels.

Victoria: The hood, although really long (so I’d imagine would be ideal for naps), isn’t adjustable in height. I found this restricted how much you could raise the headrest. I had to take it off completely in order to raise the headrest to allow my 11-month-old to sit in it comfortably. I couldn’t then get the hood back on because the head rest was in the way. If the flap at the front of the headrest was floppy (rather than stiff like a collar) this probably wouldn’t have been an issue. As a result, there is no way I could have got my baby to nap in the car seat.

While training as a journalist at the University of Gloucestershire for 3 years, she was nominated for the Best Feature Category at the Midlands Student’s Media Awards this year, and Head of News and Social Media for the university’s radio station, Tone Radio. Ellie has been published by the likes of Heatworld, Heart, Gloucestershire Live, and ITV West Country. 

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