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Best child safety locks for babyproofing

Curious toddlers love to explore and open things, but the cupboards, drawers and doors in your home can be dangerous for little fingers, which is why child safety locks can help.

By Hannah Wilson | Last updated Mar 17, 2022

child touching safety lock on cupboard doors

Once your baby starts crawling and walking, everyday household appliances and objects are, all of a sudden, potential accidents waiting to happen. Cupboards become dangerous traps for small fingers, kitchen drawers that contain sharp knives become unsafe, and cleaning products when in the wrong hands can become hazardous.

Luckily, you can preempt some accidents with the help of childproofing equipment, such as stair gates or playpens, which will keep your child in or out of a room, and child safety locks that help to prevent your little one from rummaging through your cupboards and drawers.

There are plenty of child safety locks to choose from, including magnetic locks, adhesive mount locks, pull cord locks and latch locks. But with so much choice, how do you know which ones are right for you and your family? 

To choose our curated picks, we first took to the Mumsnet forums. After all, what better way is there to discover which child safety locks are the best than to rely on real parents who have personally tried and tested them? 

After finding out which child safety locks our Mumsnetters rate, we spent four hours researching locks based on how easy they were to install, how easy they were to use and how difficult they were for children to open. To gather this research, we analysed consumer reviews on Amazon and relied on expert review sites, such as Which?.

Here are the best child safety locks to buy right now.

1. Best overall child safety lock: Dokon Child Safety Magnetic Cupboard Locks

Dokon Child Safety Magnetic Cupboard Locks

Price: £15.99 | Buy now from Amazon

“We have magnetic ones. I got them on Amazon.” (Rated by Mumsnet user seepingweeping)

With 10 locks and two keys, the Dokon Child Safety Magnetic Cupboard Locks are ideal for kitchens with multiple drawers, cabinets and cupboards that need to be kept shut. They work on a variety of cupboard types, but you’ll need to make sure that the surface is smooth and no thicker than 1.2 inches.

You don’t need to be a DIY enthusiast to install these locks as they have a strong adhesive tape that’ll hold them firmly in place. However, you need to leave the adhesive tape to dry for 24 hours so that it’s nice and sticky.

The Dokon baby locks are easy to use with the magnetic key and have an unlocked function (which is great for when your child is sleeping or not at home). They are also concealed from children and guests as the locks are installed inside the drawer or cupboard.

Some reviewers mentioned that these locks didn't keep particularly determined children out, but most parents found that these magnetic locks completely prevented their little ones from getting into cupboards and drawers.

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Comes with 10 locks and two keys
  • Has spare adhesive stickers if you make a mistake
  • Fitting instructions and YouTube video for easy installation

Cons

  • Only suitable for cupboards and drawers with a thickness of 1.2 inches
  • May not be able to keep out particularly determined children
  • Adhesive tape may leave a stain

Key specs

  • Adhesive: Yes
  • Works on cabinets without handles: Yes
  • Works on toilets: No
  • Works on fridges: No
  • Quantity: 10 locks and two keys

2. Best budget child safety lock: Dreambaby Secure Catches Child Safety Cabinet Locks

Dreambaby Secure Catches Child Safety Cabinet Locks

Price: £5.49 | Buy now from Amazon

“These ones [Dreambaby Secure Catches] go inside but probably wouldn't stop fingers from getting trapped.” (Tried and tested by Mumsnet user InpatientGardener)

For just over five pounds, you can keep your child safe with the Dreambaby Secure Catches Child Safety Cabinet Locks. This pack of 14 secure catches are a must-have for parents with adventurous children who love to rummage through cupboards. 

These locks are compatible with most cabinets and are suitable for top drawers. The locks might also be suitable for lower drawers if they have a top divider for the catch to be fitted onto. 

You’ll need to screw these childproof locks onto the inside of your cupboards or drawers, but thankfully they can’t be seen from the outside, and the installation is easy enough to do if you align the catches up correctly.

Young children will be stumped by these child locks, while adults will find them easy to use, as all you need to do to open the lock is pull open the door or drawer (as far as you can) and press down on the hook. 

But because the door opens a fraction, this design might not be suitable for all families - especially those with particularly curious children.

Pros

  • Good value
  • Easy to use 
  • Sturdy and strong locks

Cons

  • Need to screw the locks in place
  • Installation may be a bit fiddly if catches not lined up correctly
  • The drawer or door can still open a little bit with these locks, meaning your child might still be able to trap their fingers
  • Only suitable for cupboards and top drawers

Key specs

  • Adhesive: No
  • Works on cabinets without handles: Yes
  • Works on toilets: No
  • Works on fridges: No
  • Quantity: 14 catches

3. Best child safety oven lock: BeeGo Oven Safety Child Lock

BeeGo® Oven Safety Child Lock

Price: £6.99 | Buy now from Amazon

“Could you put a child lock on the Belling? I have oven locks and wouldn't like not to just in case. This one [BeeGo Oven Safety Child Lock] was really easy to stick on and does the job.” (Recommended by Mumsnet user SMBC2020)

Children love to copy what their parents do, which is probably why your child is obsessed with opening the oven - which is fine when it’s not on, but another story when you’ve got food cooking. If this sounds familiar, then the BeeGo Oven Safety Child Lock will be a good solution for you. 

Although this heat-resistant, self-adhesive safety lock was designed with ovens in mind and is compatible with most oven models and microwaves, it can be used to keep children out of cupboards, drawers, cabinets and fridges too. 

It takes 72 hours for the adhesive tape to dry and for the device to become effective, but once you’ve installed it on your oven (or fridge) and given it three days, this safety lock will well and truly stay put. 

To use the oven lock, all you need to do is press the two safety buttons then rotate the lock until the nose is facing down and it clicks into position. 

Pros

  • Ideal for ovens (but also works on fridges, cupboards, drawers and cabinets)
  • Easy to install - no drilling or screws
  • Easy to use
  • Comes with a one-year guarantee and a 30-day money-back guarantee

Cons

  • Takes 72 hours for the adhesive to set
  • Can’t touch the oven lock until the adhesion has fully set

Key specs

  • Adhesive: Yes
  • Works on cabinets without handles: Yes
  • Works on toilets: No
  • Works on fridges: Yes
  • Quantity: One

4. Best window child safety lock: DruJam Car Window Safety Lock

DruJam Car Window Safety Lock

Price: £19.99 | Buy now from Amazon

“I had this problem with my son and searched everywhere for something and found a new product on Amazon [DruJam Car Window Safety Lock] and it’s amazing. It's only for manual car windows.” (Tried and tested by Mumsnet user 89Headless)

While cars with automatic windows have an inbuilt lock, manual windows don’t have that luxury. 

Thankfully, the DruJam Car Window Safety Lock can help to keep both your child and your belongings safe when you travel. It attaches to the rear winding handle and acts as a guard so that your child can’t open the window. 

It’s suitable for most car makes and models and can be fitted on doors with cloth or fabric interiors. You don't need any tools to install this car window lock, and installation should be quick as it comes with a step-by-step instruction guide.

The DruJam can also be reused in different cars as the sticky pads just need to be washed in warm water and dried before being reattached. And as the product is made from recycled plastic, it can be fully recycled once you’ve finished using it.

Pros

  • Keeps your children and belongings safe inside the car
  • Comes with step-by-step instructions
  • Is reusable and recyclable

Cons

  • Doesn’t fit every car model
  • May need to lift the winding handle in cars such as the 2010 Ford Fiesta (but instructions and equipment are included)
  • Need to clean the door panel before installation

Key specs

  • Adhesive: No
  • Works on cabinets without handles: No
  • Works on toilets: No
  • Works on fridges: No
  • Quantity: One

5. Best child safety lock for cabinets and drawers: AYCORN Magnetic Safety Cupboard Locks for Children

AYCORN® Magnetic Safety Cupboard Locks for Children

Price: £17.99 | Buy now from Amazon

“We also have magnetic ones [AYCORN Magnetic Safety Cupboard Locks]. They are great and you can switch them to unlocked if you need to - our toddler is older now and less curious so we just keep the glasses cupboard and sharps/knives ones locked now.” (Rated by Mumsnet user mommybear1)

The AYCORN Magnetic Safety Cupboard Locks are suitable for cabinets, cupboards and drawers all around your home. If you have thicker cupboards or drawers, then you’re in luck as the two powerful magnet keys can open doors that are 1.5 inches thick. 

With these safety locks, you get 10 locks that can withstand 30kg of pull force due to the 3M self-adhesive tape and two keys - so unless your child has an extraordinary amount of strength, then this should be a failsafe option for you. 

We know that parents are busy, which is why we like that it takes 30 seconds or less to install these locks thanks to the specially designed installation adapter and clear instructions. Another handy parent-friendly feature is the option to disable the lock when your child isn’t around.

Pros

  • Quick and easy installation
  • Withstands 30kg of pull force
  • Comes with a one-year guarantee and a 30-day warranty

Cons

  • May not be suitable on all cupboard materials, such as MDF
  • You need to ensure you correctly align the lock with your drawer

Key specs

  • Adhesive: Yes
  • Works on cabinets without handles: Yes
  • Works on toilets: No
  • Works on fridges: No
  • Quantity: 10 locks and two keys

6. Best child safety cupboard lock: CHEEKY MONKEY Child Safety Cupboard Locks

CHEEKY MONKEY Child Safety Cupboard Locks

Price: £9.95 | Buy now from Amazon

“We’ve locked every drawer, cupboard and room he shouldn’t go in [with CHEEKY MONKEY Child Safety Cupboard Locks].” (Recommended by Mumsnet user 2021mumma)

In a pack of CHEEKY MONKEY Child Safety Cupboard Locks, you get eight multipurpose childproof locks and 12 3M adhesive stickers, which can be fitted onto cupboards, drawers, cabinets, fridges, toilets, bins, ovens and windows. The adjustable straps work on both flat surfaces and around corners.

Parents should find these safety locks easy to install and easy to use, with peace of mind that curious children shouldn’t be able to open them. 

To apply one of the safety locks, all you need to do is wipe down the surface and dry it, press an adhesive pad onto your cabinet or fridge and press the safety lock onto the sticky pad. The strap is durable and flexible, so you can then position the other side over the door or drawer and stick that down too.

Unfortunately, if the lock falls off or you need to remove it, the adhesive pads aren’t reusable, so you’ll need to buy more. 

Pros

  • Four extra adhesive stickers
  • Comes with an instruction manual and is easy to install
  • 100% satisfaction guarantee

Cons

  • Non-reusable adhesive pads
  • Straps might not last that long
  • May not stick to all materials

Key specs

  • Adhesive: Yes
  • Works on cabinets without handles: Yes
  • Works on toilets: Yes
  • Works on fridges: Yes
  • Quantity: Eight

7. Best magnetic child safety lock: Baba Jay Magnetic Child Safety Locks

Baba Jay Magnetic Child Safety Locks

Price: £15.99 | Buy now from Amazon

“We have these magnetic ones - Magnetic Child Safety Locks for Cupboards and Drawers by Baba Jay. They have been fine and do the job! You get two magnet ‘keys’ with them and we keep them stuck on the fridge so we don’t lose them.” (Recommended by Mumsnet user YessicaHaircut)

Keep your kids out of the cupboards with Baba Jay’s 10 magnetic locks (and two keys). 

You can fit these locks on the inside of your cabinets, cupboards and drawers without your children or guests knowing they’re there. The magnets are easy to use and can unlock doors or drawers with a thickness of up to 1.5 inches.

These locks are easy to install, as long as you correctly align the latch and lock before fixing it to the door, and instructions are on hand to help you get them installed within a couple of minutes. 

However, for the best (and stickiest) results, it’s advised to leave the adhesive and lock to dry for 24 hours before use.

Pros

  • 10 locks - ideal for any room in the home, including kitchens
  • One-year satisfaction guarantee and a 30-day warranty
  • Magnets can unlock doors of up to 1.5 inches
  • Can turn the lock off

Cons

  • Need to leave the adhesive to dry for 24 hours (for best results)
  • Must correctly align the lock and latch

Key specs

  • Adhesive: Yes
  • Works on cabinets without handles: Yes
  • Works on toilets: No
  • Works on fridges: No
  • Quantity: 10 locks and two keys

8. Best child safety lock for doors: Clippasafe Finger Alert Strip

Clippasafe Finger Alert Strip

Price: £26.80 | Buy now from Amazon

“I have found some children need the house more 'toddler-proofed' than others. We had to get door hinge protectors for DS3 after a serious accident.” (Recommended by Mumsnet user lorisparkle)

Not only do children tend to enjoy opening and closing cupboards, but they also like opening and closing doors (parents, rejoice) so the Clippasafe Finger Alert Strip can help your child avoid serious injuries. The 120cm strip acts as a barrier over the hinge side of the door and is ideal for houses with modern, flat and unpainted doors.

This device can be installed with adhesive tape or screws. But some reviewers found that the adhesive tape wasn't strong enough to hold the strip in place and instead used screws. 

What parents love about this child safety device though is that it’s transparent (meaning it won’t contrast with your home’s decor), it doesn’t obstruct or make it tricky to open the door and it comes with easy-to-follow instructions - ideal for those who aren’t so DIY-minded. 

Pros

  • Protects children’s fingers
  • Transparent design
  • Easy to install

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Only one strip height (120cm)
  • Not suitable for older doors with grooves

Key specs

  • Adhesive: Yes
  • Works on cabinets without handles: No
  • Works on toilets: No
  • Works on fridges: No
  • Quantity: One

9. Best child safety lock for drawers: Munchkin XTRAGUARD Latches

Munchkin XTRAGUARD Latches

Price: £8.99 | Buy now from Amazon

If your child is a secret mastermind or if they seem to crack most child safety locks then you need one that’ll baffle them, such as this dual button release lock by Munchkin. The versatile Munchkin XTRAGUARD Latches are designed to fit on drawers, cupboards, cabinets, toilets and fridges - making them ideal for deterring even the most adventurous of toddlers.

The flexible latch means that you can attach it around corners for extra security, which is helpful if you want to latch the microwave door to the top of the microwave, for example. 

These latches need to be placed on the outside of cupboards so aren’t the most discreet of safety locks, but they’re easy to install with the adhesive pads and successfully prevent children from opening things that need to remain shut. However, some parents have found that the adhesive pad leaves stains and marks on their cupboards and appliances when removed.

Pros

  • Works on most cupboards and appliances in the home
  • Easy to install
  • Flexible latch

Cons

  • Not discreet and unsightly
  • Large latches
  • Adhesive tape may damage surfaces and leave marks

Key specs

  • Adhesive: Yes
  • Works on cabinets without handles: Yes
  • Works on toilets: Yes
  • Works on fridges: Yes
  • Quantity: Two

10. Best child safety cabinet lock: Safety 1st Secret Button Flex Lock

Safety 1st Secret Button Flex Lock

Price: £5.42 | Buy now from Amazon

Safety 1st is a much-loved brand among parents with cleverly designed safety devices that’ll make childproofing your home easy. The Secret Button Flex Lock is no exception. 

This lock has a decoy button in the middle, so it won’t open no matter how many times your child presses it. But parents can easily unlock it with one hand using the ‘secret’ button that sits on top of the device.

As well as being easy to use, this lock is simple to install with no drilling or adhesive pads involved. To install it, all you need to do is adjust the flexible plastic straps over your doorknobs and click it into place, and you’ll see a padlock symbol appear when the device is locked. A manual with easy-to-follow instructions is also provided should you need more guidance.

While we love the ingenuity of the Safety 1st Secret Button Flex Lock, it may not be suitable for every home as it’s only compatible with cabinets or cupboards that are side-by-side (up to 7-10 cm apart) and have either knobs or handles. 

Pros

  • Has a secret button to open it
  • Easy to use
  • Easy to install and comes with a manual
  • Has a padlock symbol to show that it’s locked

Cons

  • Only suitable for cabinets with knobs or handles
  • Pricey if you need several locks

Key specs

  • Adhesive: No
  • Works on cabinets without handles: No
  • Works on toilets: No
  • Works on fridges: No
  • Quantity: One

What are 5 appropriate ways to childproof a house? 

Child safety locks are just one way to create a safe home environment, but there are many other strategies you can put in place to keep your child safe. 

Childproofing a house may come easy to risk-averse parents or those who already have experience with toddlers and children. But if this is your first child, then you might not know how to protect them from the dangers that are lurking in your home.

Luckily, we have five childproofing tips for you to implement in your home:

  1. Keep dangerous products out of reach: The best way to keep your child safe is to hide dangerous items or keep them well out of reach. Think household cleaning products, chemicals, medications, plastic bags, matches, lighters and small objects that could be choking hazards. We recommend keeping dangerous items/products in a locked drawer or placing them in a cupboard that’s high up.
  2. Cover dangerous items: Windows, radiators, exposed pipes, plug sockets and fireplaces can all be harmful to children. To keep your child safe, you can use window guards, protective material covers for radiators and exposed pipes, plug socket covers and fireguards to stop your child from touching the fire.
  3. Use stair gates: Stair gates prevent children from falling down the stairs, however they don’t always fit on all staircases. If your staircase is too wide for a stair gate then we recommend that you install one between the door frames around your home. That way you can keep your children in one room and not have to worry about them getting up to mischief while you’re busy elsewhere in the house.
  4. Secure furniture: Large and heavy items of furniture that aren't secured into place can be a serious hazard for children as they grow and explore. To prevent your children from pulling furniture onto themselves, you need to secure furniture, such as TV stands, bookcases, chest of drawers and shelving units, into the wall or floor. You can find a variety of anti-tip brackets and straps to keep all your furniture secure. You might also want to secure items, such as rugs, to the floor to prevent trip hazards.
  5. Cushion sharp edges: Sharp corners can cause bumps, bruises and cuts, which is why you need to ensure your lower-level furniture is cushioned with corner guards. You can use corner guards to cover coffee tables, TV stands and bedside tables. You might also want to cushion things like fireplaces with a fireplace bumper cover.

When should I start babyproofing my house?

Babyproofing your home can take several days, weeks or even months, which is why we recommend you start as soon as possible. Many parents choose to babyproof their homes before giving birth so that, when the baby comes, you know that your home is safe for them.

As you go around the house, keep an eye on things that could be harmful to your baby and find a way to make them safer. Most parents learn as they go, so watch as your baby interacts with their environment and see if you can spot any potential dangers that need childproofing.

Once your baby is crawling and walking, you should double-check your safety measures and see if you can spot anything else that needs childproofing.

How many child safety locks do I need?

There’s no right or wrong answer for how many child safety locks you need. It depends on the size of your home, the number of cupboards and drawers you have that are off-limits to children, and other safety preferences. For example, if you have a stair gate on the kitchen door, then you might not need to secure your kitchen cupboards and drawers because your child won’t be able to go into the kitchen without you being there.

Where should I install child safety locks?

You should install child safety locks on low cabinets, drawers and cupboards in the kitchen and bathroom, and you might also want to install them in your utility room, living room and garage. 

Essentially, you need to lock any dangerous items away, which means anything that could cause injury or harm to your child. For example, you should lock away medicines, knives, cables and cords, glass jars or bottles, cleaning products (such as bleach or household cleaners), personal hygiene products (such as mouthwash and cosmetics), small items (such as batteries or buttons), gardening chemicals (such as pesticides) and car products (such as antifreeze or petrol).

How to choose the best child safety locks? 

To choose the best safety locks for your children and home, here are some factors for you to consider before you buy:

Type of lock

There are plenty of designs to choose from, including magnetic, adhesive, pull cord and latch locks - all of which offer different levels of protection and ease of use. The type of lock you need depends on your child’s age, curiosity levels and problem-solving skills.

  • Magnetic locks: These are easy to use and offer excellent levels of protection as long as your child doesn’t get hold of the key. But they might be difficult to install, and you always need to have the key within reach to open the door (but out of reach of your child).
  • Adhesive locks: These locks are simple to install and can be removed with ease too. Adhesive locks are often inexpensive, making them appealing to those on a budget. However, some brands don’t always provide adhesive stickers that last, and parents find that their children can rip them off.
  • Pull cord locks: These locks are easy to install and easy for adults to use but are tricky for children to operate (especially if they have a decoy button to distract children, such as the Safety 1st Secret Button Flex Lock). That being said, they can only be installed on cupboards or cabinets with two side-by-side knobs or handles.
  • Latch locks: These locks are easy to use and are screwed in, which makes them particularly sturdy. However, due to being screwed in, these locks might not be suitable for parents who rent. Installing latch locks can be tricky and the cupboard door will still open a fraction, which won’t prevent your child’s fingers from getting trapped.

Installation

As mentioned above, some locks may be more difficult to install than others, so make sure you take this into account before buying. Another thing to consider with installation is whether you need hardware to put the locks into place or whether you just need to stick them into place using adhesive pads. 

Thickness of drawers

If you choose magnetic locks then you need to find one that’s powerful enough to open your drawers, which means thinking about their thickness. Some drawers may be too thick for the magnet keys to work. 

Flexibility

Not all locks work on every surface, item of furniture or appliance, so it’s important to consider where you’d need to place it. For example, some of our recommendations work on cabinets, cupboards, drawers, fridges, toilets and bins, while others are specifically designed to only work on cabinets. 

Quantity

Child safety locks come in a variety of pack sizes, so depending on your home and child safety needs, you need to make sure that you have all your bases covered and all your cupboards accounted for. Count how many locks you’ll need before buying them and have a few spares just in case.

Lock appearance

If you care about the aesthetics of your home then the appearance of the lock will also be worth considering. Some locks are designed to be invisible/installed on the inside of the cabinet, while others are on the outside and may be unsightly.

What are the best child safety cupboard locks?

We think the best child safety cupboard locks are the Dokon Child Safety Magnetic Cupboard Locks. These locks are highly rated in the Mumsnet community, and it’s easy to see why. This pack of 10 cupboard locks (and two keys) are quick and easy to install, and they work on a variety of cupboards, drawers and cabinets. What’s more, the Dokon Cupboard Locks come with extra adhesive stickers - perfect for removing the locks and placing them onto different cupboards as your child grows.

How we chose our recommendations

To find our recommendations, we took to the Mumsnet forums to find out which child safety locks real parents rely on to keep their children safe. 

After compiling these real recommendations, we then went on to research each child safety lock and find out which ones were the best in terms of child safety, ease of use and ease of installation. We also evaluated expert reviews and advice on Which? and took to Amazon to discover what consumers thought about the safety locks. 

From our in-depth research, we then compiled the top child safety locks that work best for most homes, and the ones that are most used and loved by real people.

Why you should trust us

We work hard to provide unbiased, independent advice you can trust. We do sometimes earn revenue through affiliate (click-to-buy) links in our articles. This helps us fund more helpful articles like this one.