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Board Book vs. Hardcover:
What’s The Difference?

What is a Board Book?

If you want to raise a reader, then you want a book in their hands as soon as possible. But are books safe for your baby? The real question is: “What type of book is safest for even the littlest of hands?”

Experts say that board books are the best way to introduce babies to reading. So let’s take a look at why parents should stock their babies’ bookshelves with quality board books.

Board Books vs. Hard Cover Books

The difference between board books and hardcover books

What’s the difference between a hardcover book and a board book?

Let’s take a look. A hardcover book is exactly what it sounds like. It’s a book that is designed with a hardcover, but it has traditional paper pages inside. Some of the benefits of hardcovers include:

  • Hardcovers are Collectible: If you are a book collector, you most likely prefer hardback books over paperbacks because they’re more durable.
  • Hardcovers are Protective: The outside cover works to protect the inner pages and the pages are bound with stitching or glue.

However, hardcover books also have negatives. Some of the negative features of hardcover books include:

  • Hardcovers have Selective Durability: Hardcovers only work well to protect the inner pages when adults treasure them.
  • Easily Destructible by Little Ones: Babies and toddlers can easily rip and tear the inner pages leaving the hardcover intact but the pages destroyed. This is just one of the reasons why board books are recommended for babies – they are made to withstand all of your baby’s chomping, tossing, tearing, and more.

What is a board book?

A board book is a sub genre of the picture book that is designed for the youngest of children, babies, and infants. Some features of a board book include:

  • Board Books are printed on durable paperboard. The entire board book, even the inner pages, is made of highly durable paperboard that is specially folded and bound.
  • Board Books have rounded corners for babies. The corner pages of board books are rounded out as to not harm any curious babies.
  • Board Books have 12-24 pages. Board books tend to be shorter than hardcover books due to it’s thick paperboard pages

Why are Board Books Safer for Babies?

Baby chewing a custom made ABC Board Book
Make this adorable ABC board book and personalize for your little one with custom text and images! Click on the image go to the product page.
Designed for babies from birth to age 3, board books are safer for babies than their counterpart hardcover book for several reasons.

  • Board Books are safe and chewable. Babies like to explore everything with their mouths, which is one of the reasons why board books are safer. You’d rather have them chew the corner of a board book than munch and swallow pieces of paper.
  • Board Books are designed for your baby’s little hands. Board Books are smaller and fit perfectly in their little hands, can be easily held, turned, stacked, and tossed without harm to your child
  • Board Books have longevity. Because the board books are printed on thick durable paperboard, they last longer in your child’s library.
  • Board Books are non-toxic. Board Books are printed and bound directly on thick paperboard. Our board books are made using safe materials and processes that provide the highest level of quality and production consistency and regularly safety tested.
  • Board Books have safe, rounded corners that will not hurt your baby. Board Books are round corner trimmed for an extra protection when little ones chew and tear at with their mouths and hands

What’s one of the best benefit of board books? Board Books nurture a love of reading for your baby

Baby reading a custom board book

The NY Times suggests, “Becoming a reader starts as soon as your baby pays attention to board books.” The unique design of a board book is the perfect introduction to reading. They allow babies to explore the text and pictures with each of their senses safely. By showing babies that reading is fun and that they can play with books, you are fostering an early love of reading.

Board books also provide precious bonding opportunities. Highlights magazine explains, “Intimate moments spent sharing simple board books with baby help build listening and visual skills that form the basis for independent reading later on.” With illustrations and a few words, board books offer plenty of “point and say” opportunities.

Pint Size Productions is the only USA board book manufacturer and printer of baby board books. We only use safe materials that are made in the USA. Our board books are coated with either gloss UV or Aqueous matte coating. We never laminate our board books due to the hazard of using film lamination on a baby book. We also regularly safety test our board books with a certified independent testing lab to make certain our board books are always in compliance with the United States CPSC requirements and safe for baby board books.

How can you build a strong library for your baby? Make your own custom board book with Pint Size Size Productions

Make a Custom Board Book


Now that you understand why board books are the best option for your little one, did you know you can make your own custom board books with Pint Size Productions, the only US board book manufacturer? We take all the things you love about board books – quality, durable, and safety – and give you the ability to add your precious memories into your own board book.

We offer a variety of board book services for individuals, authors, illustrators, creatives and organizations. With Pint Size Productions, you can make a variety of board books for babies:

What are you waiting for? Get started today with our Pint Size Board Book Creator!

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