A month ago we were sent the new iSize high back booster from BeSafe! It’s the first high back booster on the market that is approved to the new R129-02 regulation.
Testing it has been a very good experience, and the seat has several key features on it that we see in other seats, but it also has one particular key feature that is a completely new concept to high back boosters who are approved to the new regulation.
This is our family’s review of the new BeSafe izi Flex Fix iSize high back booster!
Stature height: 100 – 150 cm
Age: approx. 4 – 12 years
Installation: 3-point vehicle belt or ISOfix in combination with 3-point vehicle belt
Car seat weight: 7 kg
L x W x H: 42 x 52 x 64 cm (in lowest position and incl. SIP bumpers)
Width without SIP bumpers: 44 cm
Seat height in highest position: 82 cm
My professional advice is to always use your ERF seat until it’s completely outgrown before you change to a high back booster! It may be approved from 100cm – but a 100cm tall child still very much fits in an ERF seat, so wait until you absolutely have to change! Remember that one step up in a car seat group is one step DOWN in safety! And the boosters are the LAST of the car seat groups your child goes in, and thus far less safe than continuing to rear face when the child still fits in a rear-facing car seat. :)
Winner of the prestigious Kind + Jugend Innovation Award 2017 in the category «World of Travelling Kids»
- 5,5 years old
- 118,5 cm tall
- 42 cm long torso
- 7 years old
- 128,5 cm tall
- 46,5 cm long torso
The Flex comes in several beautiful colours! We have it in red and dark blue, which is the Sunset Mélange and Navy Mélange.
New Safety Feature!
One of the biggest changes to the high back boosters in R129 is that they have a new “pad” which is there to help decrease the neck load force. You might now say “oh but we already have that on other seats!” well yeh, there is a pad on some other seats but…it’s not the same.
The “moon” as Henry named it, is on the BeSafe booster called PAD+. This might have a different name on a different R129-02 booster from a different manufacturer – but this is what it’s called on the BeSafe izi Flex Fix.
Apart from giving comfort in terms of softening the vehicle seat belt and also decreasing the neck load force in the event of an accident – the PAD+ is also there for additional chin and chest protection. It’s quite thick on the part that goes near the chin, but also very soft. My kids love it and find it very comfortable.
However with new features comes user guidelines – so please make sure you are positioning and using the PAD+ correctly on your child:
The izi Flex Fix has a completely different headrest than other seats on the current market. It’s about half the “size” of other’s and is also far less bulky. This, however, does not make it any less safe than a bulkier headrest – far from it! The whole idea behind the change of headrest design is to prevent the children from leaning forwards in the car seat to “see out” the window among other things.
It’s a known problem that a lot of high back boosters are simply too bulky in this area and that the children tend to lean forwards in the seats. Leaning forwards places the child outside the protection zone of the car seat – which is why it’s so very important that children stay inside the booster seats, never lean out of them and basically sit completely still…sort of like a statue. It’s also one of the reasons why bolstering too young, is a big problem for safety. The younger children don’t quite grasp the safety concept yet because of their less mature cognitive ability, so the longer you wait until boostering, the better!
BeSafe has shown a good post on Instagram where they explain the correct placement for the headrest. Because it’s so different from what we are used to, I would definitely advise you to check this out:
Built for 3 – across situations
Another well thought out feature on the izi Flex Fix is that it is slim. But also it has the ability to get even slimmer!
BeSafe izi FlexFix with 3 across!
You can take off the side impact protection, not only the small extra one but also the side panels. Like you see in the picture above. The middle seat there has had them taken off – which makes the seat even slimmer but without compromising on SIP safety. This because it’s in the middle seat, therefore the two boosters or other car seats next to it – is providing ‘Side Impact Protection’.
The previous BeSafe booster has no horns at all, but this has changed in this edition to the BeSafe family. It still has no horns, but the belt routing is vastly better – if I may say so. I have never ever liked the routing of the BeSafe izi UP x3 booster, so the izi Flex is def. an improvement!
From one of our snaps! Make sure to follow us on SnapChat! x Caitiebelle has also got a very good lap belt routing.
Also because of the slimness of the seat and the “no horns” that it has – accessing the buckle was very easy.
The new izi Flex has a neat carry handle which makes it super easy to transport in and out of the car.
From the mouth of babes…
She knows! I am so so proud of her! 7 years old and she knows. ♥😍😘👏👏👏👏 She is good proof that teaching children about in-car safety from an early age is so important, and they do get it! Treat the car like any other place there are dangers. Teach them to respect their car seats and understand the dangers of what can happen if they do not. 😎😊
Our Pros & Cons
As with every seat, there are some ‘pros’ as well as some ‘cons’ with a car seat.
- Very lightweight! And the new carry handle makes it even easier to carry.
- Very easy to install in the car.
- Can be used in cars both with and without ISOfix.
- Good belt pathing on my kids. (However yours might not have this, so always try the child in the car seat before buying!)
- Very easy to buckle in – my kids are able to buckle themselves and also easily pushes the PAD+ to the correct position. (Always double-check the kids before driving off! Children cannot be trusted to do this on their own without adult supervision.)
- The new headrest design does help the kids see better.
- Headrest adjuster is on the side of the seat (you twist the grey knob) which is a vast improvement from having it in the back of the seat or behind the headrests as you don’t have to move the seat at all to adjust. You can also very easily adjust the headrest when the child is in the booster.
- 3-across works like a dream! And taking off the side wings is very simple, putting them on is also simple.
- It’s a very comfy seat they tell me (the kids..). They also sleep well in it.
- I like the lap guide, though it can scrunch the seat belt if you are not careful, though I have been told a little scrunching of the seat belt is not a safety issue.
- Comes in many beautiful fresh colours.
- It offers a slight recline.
- Because the headrest comes from “within” the seat shell, I don’t believe this booster will have many issues in cars where removing the back headrest is a problem.
- The instructions are very clear both in the manual and on the side of the car seat.
- The SIP+ (the smallest side impact protection boxes) have a tendency to very easily fall off when you lean in to buckle the kid. This might be different in slim people of course – but if you are of the larger population (like me and hubby), then this tends to happen a lot if you aren’t careful. So watch out!
- The PAD+ does have a tendency to slip a little. I do wish there was a small “flap with a hook line” sort of thing that it could connect to. That would really help I think. I feel like I need to be a bit too “hawk-eyed” on it and make sure the kids push it back up.
We were sent these two BeSafe izi Flex Fix – iSize high back boosters by BeSafe for the purpose of this review. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own!
Therese has completed the ‘Advanced Child Car Seat Training Course’ at TRL (Transport Research Lab) and is a CPD accredited car seat expert. She blogs about in-car safety, car seats, tips, reviews, giveaways and advice. She’s a mum on a mission to change the law and raise awareness. She is also a breastfeeding advocate and gentle parenting promoter who loves cloth nappies, baby-wearing, BLW and co-sleeping/bed-sharing.