Baby wearing has a multitude of benefits, for both the parent and baby. Baby wearing allows your little one to be safe and secure, all while allowing you to be hands free. When you wear your baby, you are allowing them to see the world from your point of view, and yet also allowing them to turn away if they get too stimulated or don’t want to “talk” to strangers. Babies who are worn typically cry less and are in tune with the parent. Babies can see how to interact with the world from the safety, security, and comfort of being close to Mom or Dad.
There are a huge variety of carriers on the market today and choosing one that is right for you and your child can be overwhelming. If you are able to join a local baby wearing group (search Google or Facebook), you may be able to try out several different types of carriers before you buy them. You can also search for baby wearing swap groups which will allow you to purchase a gently used carrier at a fraction of the cost of a new one.
Here are three popular baby wearing soft structured carriers:
A Tula carrier is made of 100% cotton and is an ergonomic soft structured carrier. It is designed to wear baby for front or back carry and will fit most adults. Each Tula carrier is truly handmade, no machines, in their factory in Poland. The carriers are structured specifically to support baby’s spine and are breastfeeding compatible for the nursing mom. In a Tula Baby Carrier, you can wear your baby from birth to toddler-hood (with newborn insert & toddler extensions) or you can purchase the Tula Toddler Carrier when baby is approximately 18 months old. According to their website, the Tula baby carrier is designed to carry from birth to approximately 18 months and the Tula toddler carrier is designed to carry from 18 months to approximately 4 years old.
The Boba brand has three different main designs. They offer a Boba Wrap, a Boba Air, and a Boba Carrier. Each design offers a variety of colors and prints. They also offer a Boba Mini, which is made of 100% cotton, for your older children to carry their baby dolls and learn baby wearing at an early age.
The Boba Wrap is designed for preemie babies to approximately 30 pounds. With the wrap, there are no buckles, just simply tie it around your body for a snug fit.
The Boba Air will fit babies approximately 15 to 25 pounds. It is lightweight and folds into itself for easy storage. It also includes a hood for sleeping little ones and a pocket to store it in. The straps are fully adjustable and the carrier is made of 100% nylon.
Last, but not least, the Boba Carrier was made to carry your little one from infancy into toddler-hood (approximately 45 pounds) with no special infant insert. It is made of 100% cotton and has multiple pockets for storage. In addition, it has removable foot straps for the comfort of your toddler.
All carriers in the Boba brand are good for front carry (Boba Air & Boba Carrier work well for back carry, also). They are all designed to be breastfeeding compatible and to fit most adults.
An Ergo carrier has a large variety of designs and styles to choose from. Mom or Dad can carry baby from infant to about 45 pounds (with infant insert). It is ideal for front or back carries and can fit most adults. The Ergo brand has 5 collections to choose from: Original (comfortable for everyday use, large selection of colors/prints), Organic (same as original, but made from 100% organic cotton), Performance (great for outdoor adventures with breathable materials; good choice for back carry), Travel (includes lightweight and compact designs), and Designer (select from beautiful prints without sacrificing comfort, safety, and convenience).
Each type of carrier has its own pros and cons. There are many more types of wraps and carriers than listed here! Research and ask questions! Join a baby wearing group and try on different types! You may fall in love with one you never considered!
- Make sure baby’s mouth & nose are uncovered at all times.
- Keep baby’s chin from being curled into their chest. This position will prevent them from breathing correctly.
- Support baby when you lean over.
- Protect baby from elements (sun, wind, cold), but dress baby appropriately for the season. Remember, that you and baby will be warmer when you are baby wearing.
- Inspect carrier frequently for any damage. Do not use if you suspect damage of any kind.