I researched for hours to find them safest play mat and this is the one we chose. It doesn't have a terrible smell when opened. What ever smell it does have was gone within 10 minutes of opening. Our child is able to scoot around comfortably and has taken a couple of dives from learning how to pull herself up and the padding was enough to support her noggin and she didn't cry! We have recommended this product to other parents that have been over and had their children use the mat.