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The top 11 parent-approved baby carriers



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Created on Apr 16, 2024 · 33 mins read

I might as well have named all three of my kids "Joey."

They’re basically tiny baby koalas that would give anything for me to carry them in a nifty built-in pouch.

Unfortunately, for them (and maybe for me?), I’m not a marsupial and thus, have to outsource my baby carrier needs. Not to brag, but after babywearing three deliciously chunky, clingy babies for the past six years, I’m kind of a baby carrier.

If any ‘best baby carriers’ have been advertised on Instagram – I’ve probably tried them. If it’s made it onto any sort of must-have registry list – yep, I’ve definitely tried it.

In my experience, having a few different options to reach for has been a lifesaver and more importantly, a back saver. Different baby carriers are more appropriate for different ages and stages. Not to mention baby carriers fit differently on different body types and shapes.

Finding a carrier that works is like meeting your soulmate. I had to date a lot of baby carriers before finding the ones I couldn’t imagine parenting without. And for the sake of this piece, I decided to try out some extra ones too, because we all have different things we’re looking for.

For new parents already overwhelmed with their to-buy list, you’re probably wondering if a baby carrier is as much a need as just a want.

The benefits of baby wearing

Babies are many things – adorable, heartwarming, endlessly engaging, to name a few – but convenient isn’t one of them.

This isn’t a new phenomenon. Parents have been confronted with this hurdle for thousands of years. It was commonplace in ancient civilisations within Egypt, China, and Indigenous communities, where parents had to travel and gather food without any babysitting services available.

Whilst we might not be hunting and gathering (well, at least I’m not), this practice still pays off for us modern-day parents. Baby wearing has risen a lot in popularity within Western countries over the last few decades.

People are noticing some of the major upsides, which include:

  • Bonding time: With your baby snuggled closely, you can foster a deeper emotional connection and load up on all their cuteness. This closeness triggers the release of oxytocin, often referred to as the “love hormone,” which is known to strengthen bonds. It nurtures your baby’s emotional development and lays the foundation for secure attachment, which has long-term benefits to their relationships and social life.
  • Travel made easy: Sure, prams exist. But have you ever tried to unfold one while juggling grocery bags, a closing boot door, and a mother-in-law on the phone who loves detail? Oh yeah, and don’t forget the little human you’re in charge of. It makes you wish you could just strap your baby to your chest. Baby carriers mean you don’t need to line up for an elevator or dodge obstacles in the street. You can get to wherever you need without the added accessibility check.
  • The master multitasker: Whether it’s cooking, shopping, or doing household chores, you can do it all hands-free and whilst maintaining physical contact with your baby. If you’re managing multiple kids and a busy schedule, you’ll quickly see the proof of it. It’s a multitasking parent’s best friend.
  • Cosy comfort: Alright, enough about you. Your little one gets a lot out of a baby carrier too. It keeps them warm, cosy, and comfortable; the snug and secure environment can mimic the sensation of being in the womb. This feeling, believe it or not, can help soothe fussy babies and promote better sleep patterns. You might even find the snoozing on you while you’re going about your day. Some studies found that babies who were held more cried 43% less during the day, and 51% less in the evening. Skin to skin contact truly helps your baby thrive.
  • Encourages breastfeeding: For breastfeeding mums, having your baby close to your chest can make breastfeeding more convenient, easy, and natural. Even if you’re not someone typically comfortable with breastfeeding on-the-go, this might just be an avenue that works for you! Some baby carriers are able to cover your little one for discreet feeds, so you score some subtlety, and it feels a lot more intuitive for your little one to latch on (and doze off when they have a full belly).

So while baby wearing might not be embedded into the Aussie vernacular quite yet, it has substantial and scientifically backed benefits that attest to it.

What to look for in a baby carrier

There are pros and cons for all baby carriers – it’s just a matter of pinpointing your priorities. At the same time, you shouldn’t compromise on comfort and safety. The best baby carriers should look after you and your little one, and help you live life to the fullest. So here are some tips on choosing a baby carrier you’ll love:

  • Straps and waist belt: You want broad, padded straps for your shoulders and a wide waist belt to distribute your baby’s weight evenly across your upper body. Tiny humans aren’t as light as you’d think, especially when you’ve been holding them up for more than 30 minutes. The right support makes a huge difference.
  • Healthy hip positioning: The right baby carrier should encourage healthy hip development in your kid. The carrier should give them room to spread their legs so that they’re able to straddle your body. You can verify this by choosing a carrier that’s recognized by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute (which all the carriers in this article are).
  • Customisation: Babies grow quickly. The more you can customise your carrier to your baby’s age and growth, the longer it will last your family. Customisation allows for the perfect fit – for parents, too. Don’t forget, you’ll be the one wearing your baby; best to make sure the baby carrier sits comfortably on you.
  • Versatility: How many carry positions does it have? Front and back are the essentials for most families, maybe hip carry if you want flexibility, but some carriers can have up to 6 different ways to hold your baby. As your baby grows, it’ll be important the baby carrier can face forward – make that your priority.
  • Weather protection: Whether you’re facing down blaring summer heat, or needing to shield against chilly gusts of wind, your baby carrier should offer some protection. Mesh material is handy for those Aussies living down-under, as well as some sort of wind breaker feature.

Before you jump into carrier shopping, note down what your priorities are. This might mean a chat with your Physio, if you have one, about the sort of support you’re looking for (or if baby wearing would even be beneficial for you), or your baby’s GP for any specific needs or concerns that need addressing.

Free A Mother Carrying Her Baby Inside the Carrier Stock Photo

Types of baby carriers

You’ll find out pretty quickly in this article that there are a lot of options to hold your baby. Let me catch you up to speed on the different types of baby carriers out there:

  • Wrap carriers: Like a long piece of fabric you wrap around your little one, these allow for a lot of versatility in carry positions. Want them one your hip? Your back? Your side? The choice is yours. My upside to these is thaty’re super snuggly. But the downside is that are that they aren’t as supportive. After a longer stretch of time, you could start feeling it in your back and shoulders. They’re also a bit complicated to wear at first, and you might get a tad frustrated weaving through all the fabric.
  • Ring sling carriers: If you’re all about a fashion moment, ring sling carriers might be for you. There’s definitely a learning curve required at first, but once you’ve nailed it it’s very easy to use. Similar to wrap carriers, the major perk is the versatility these fabric carriers offer. However, like the wraps, the long-term support of these aren’t amazing.
  • Soft structured carriers: The most widely known and used in Australia, soft structured carriers offer the most support and stability for parent and baby. These might seem more limited, but many offer multiple carrying positions. There are a few more steps to setting these up compared to the other carriers, thanks to the straps, belts and customisation options.
  • Meh Dai (or Mei-Tai) carriers: Rooted in Asian culture, think of them as hybrid carriers that have features of a wrap and a soft structured carrier. You have the long pieces of fabric again, but this time with shoulder straps and a waist belt as well. That gives it a bit more structure than wraps or ring slings.

Other carriers you might encounter are backpack carriers, hip seats, and woven wrap carriers.

Best baby carrier for newborn babies

The Baby Bjorn Mini: This brand is already heralded as featuring some of the best baby carriers, and I think I’ve drunk the Kool-Aid. This is the best carrier I’ve used for newborns and tiny babies.

Baby Carrier Mini Anthracite - 3D Mesh BabyBjörn

Quick features:

  • Designed for newborns to 12-month-old babies
  • Recommended baby weight/size is 3.2–11kg, 53–75cm
  • Adjustable head support that grows with your child
  • Double buckle for a perfect fit
  • Small and compact
  • Machine wash friendly
  • Soft fabric and materials
  • Three carry positions
  • Carrier weighs 0.22kg

Pros: I love that the Baby Bjorn Mini is the perfect size for the newborn stage without having to fuss with any additional inserts but it’s designed to last up to one year. The soft fabric felt really appropriate for a young baby with nothing rough or uncomfortable digging into his body. My husband absolutely loved this carrier when our baby was smaller, too. He didn’t babywear our other two kids nearly as much and I think this carrier is the reason he took to it so well with our third.  An added bonus: this carrier comes in the sweetest, muted colour palette.

Cons: I wouldn’t recommend using this as your only carrier after about six months. It just doesn’t have enough structure and support for a heavier baby in my opinion and I found my back feeling increasingly strained. The cross-back straps were really comfy when my baby was smaller but started to dig into my shoulders as he got bigger. It’s an expensive carrier for how long you’ll use it.

The best baby wrap

The Solly Baby Wrap: This one takes some practice to put on (as we mentioned earlier) but all three of my babies absolutely loved it and I did, too.

Quick features:

  • Suits newborns and small babies
  • Recommended baby weight is up to 11kg
  • Distributes weight evenly across upper body
  • Lightweight and breathable fabric
  • Adjustable one size, universal fit

Pros: This softbaby wrap is one long, incredibly soft piece of fabric that folds up quite small making it easy to toss in your diaper bag. One end has a little pocket that you fold it into and I never went anywhere without it. I loved the way it supported my babies so they were cuddled right up against me and able to fall asleep almost instantly. I was also able to sit down once they fell asleep due to its soft and flexible nature which felt like a major win when they were in the phase of only napping when worn. My babies felt like they were able to get into a much more natural position (like being held) which made this baby wrap a necessity during the early months.

Cons: Like the Babybjorn, while this baby wrap can be used for your baby’s first year, I wouldn’t recommend it for use that long. The same issue with digging into my back occurred and it felt like it began to stretch out more quickly as my baby got heavier. The learning curve on this is a bit steeper – it’s not a throw-on-and-go carrier. I highly recommend practicing how to use it before you’re sleep deprived with a crying newborn. Trust.

The best hybrid carrier

The Boppy Baby Carrier: This carrier is the best of both worlds with a waist strap that buckles and shoulder straps that wrap.

Quick features:

  • Recommended baby weight is 3.6-15.8 kg
  • Three carry positions
  • Padded waist belt and wide straps
  • Soft, stretchy material
  • Machine wash friendly
  • Easy to store

Pros: This carrier was my favourite for when my baby was two to three months old but can be used much longer than that. I love the fabric. It’s like a thick yoga pants material that hugs your body and your baby, which feels steadier than a lot of carrier wraps. It’s also easier to put on than a full baby wrap but still gives you the benefit of a soft wrap. The stretchy fabric gives it a little bit of a bounce which was great for getting my baby to sleep. I also liked how simple it was to take on the go, wash and clean, and adjusts nicely for different body sizes (because postpartum bodies are ever evolving).

Cons: As with most unstructured carriers, it started to hurt my back a bit as my baby got heavier around seven months. The thicker fabric, whilst supportive, isn’t very breathable under the Aussie summer sun. I’d probably only recommend it for chillier months to avoid a total sweatfest. If you’re likely to switch carrying positions often, it’s not the most convenient to shuffle around. All the fabric can get tangled and in the way.

The best soft structured baby carriers

Ergo Baby Carriers: No list of best baby carriers would be complete without an Ergo (or two).

Ergobaby Omni Dream Baby Carrier Onyx Black | Baby Carriers | Baby Bunting AU

This was the first structured carrier I used and I credit this baby carrier with surviving colic with my first baby. I purchased the Omni 360  with my third because he was getting quite warm in the Omni in the summertime. I also tried the Aerloom carrier in my search for a cooler summer option but I didn’t love the way I had to flip the waistband under to put it on and didn’t find the Formaknit fabric had enough stretch to justify a less structured option.

Fun fact about these carriers, Ergobaby was really big on emphasising the importance of supporting a baby’s hips in the ‘M’ position back in the early days, and was one of the first to follow the TICKS guideline (more on that later). Safe to say it’s a brand you can trust.

Quick features of Omni 360

  • Recommended baby weight is 3.2-20kg
  • Soft structured carrier
  • Four carry positions, including ergonomic forward facing option
  • Adjustable from newborn to toddler
  • Adjustable hood (UPF50+) to support baby’s head, protect from the sun, and give privacy for breastfeeding
  • Padded waist belt and shoulder straps
  • Lumbar support for extra back comfort as your baby grows
  • Includes detachable storage pouch
  • Breathable, lightweight carrier
  • Machine wash friendly
  • Padded head support for baby
  • The carrier weighs 0.77g

Quick features of Aerloom

  • Lightweight soft structured carrier, weighing only 0.68kg
  • Recommended baby weight is 3.2kg-15.9kg
  • Stretchy and comfortable with FormaKnit fabric
  • Built in air flow for temperature regulation
  • Largered zipper pocket for parents on the go
  • Padded head support for baby
  • Machine washable
  • Carrier weighs 0.77g

Pros: Both Ergobaby carriers were incredibly supportive and I felt like my baby was secure enough that I could go for more active outings. I love that I can easily buckle myself into this structured carrier so that I’m not stuck needing an extra hand when I’m the only one on baby duty. This is my main carrier that I reach for over and over again now that my baby is ten months old. He loves the front-facing carry option and I love that he will still fall asleep in it when I need him to take a catnap at the end of the day.

Cons: More support means more bulk, so you need to compromise a little on how travel-friendly this one is. The fabric is also on the stiffer end, which can be a pro for support but might be a con for some parents. And price wise, it’s definitely up there.

The best ring sling carrier

The Sakura Bloom ring sling: Some babies love a sling and others not so much. I had two out of three ring sling babies. They can be a little tough to learn how to use but lots of parents swear by them.

Quick features:

  • Recommended baby weight is 3-15kg
  • One size, adjustable
  • Comfortable, custom-fit
  • Compact, low profile, and easy to pack
  • Hands free carrier
  • Great for newborns, breastfeeding and wearing while pregnant

Pros: This is a really lovely way to carry your baby. This ring sling feels elegant to wear and unlike wraps, once you thread your rings you don’t have to do much to re-adjust when you take your baby in and out. They also provide flexibility with hands free carrying in different positions: front, back, and hip carry. One major perk for this one is breastfeeding; nursing is so simple and subtle with a ring sling. I didn’t jump on the train in time, but unlike sturdier structured carriers, it can actually be used from birth.

Cons: Again, the learning curve for this baby carrier can be pretty steep. Once you figure it out it feels quite easy but it can take a little while to get comfortable with it. Sakura Bloom does have a bunch of instructional videos to guide you through, which scores them points. A ring sling isn’t as sturdy as a structured carrier and tend to hurt your shoulder if you wear them for long periods of time. I also found myself worrying a little about my kid’s head support on the longer stretches too.

The best carrier for walks (and aesthetics)

The Baby Tula Cotton Explore baby carrier: Whether you’re planning a big hike, running errands, or just popping outside for a stroll, you won’t have to scour through endless baby carriers to find the best bet. This structured carrier is comfy, compact, and so cosy for your little one.

Quick features:

  • Recommended baby weight is 3.1-20.4kgs
  • Multiple carry positions
  • Adjusts from newborn to toddler
  • Made from 100% cotton
  • Padded wide waist belt and shoulder straps
  • Machine washable
  • Weight of carrier is 0.8kg

Pros: First up, these baby carriers come in the cutest patterns and designs; if you’re one for aesthetics, you won’t be disappointed here. The one pictured is called ‘Play’, but there are also options with cute cheetahs, black stars, and a monochromatic zebra print. The shoulder straps were super comfy, even, and adjusted really easily so both my partner and I could use it. The reason I loved it for travel is that after a long walk (or even a few times, a hike), my back and shoulders felt totally fine. There are so many ways to adjust this one, as the shoulder straps, centre strap, and waistband can all be adjusted to meet your needs. When you are walking, it moves enough that it’s comfortable but gives more security than, say, a wrap. The padding for your baby is also a nice touch.

Cons: The material is a bit thicker than some of the other baby carriers, so it doesn’t bode as well in summer once the sweat and humidity comes out. As a result, it can feel slightly bulky at the start (though it did soften with time). And remember how I loved the customisation with all the straps? Well, that can make for a confusing fitting. Sometimes the more options you have, the more overwhelming it is. You might need a hand with getting this carrier on (I’ll admit, my husband did need to step in), depending on how far you want to take the customisation.

The best baby carrier for head support

The Baby Bjorn Harmony baby carrier: A staple baby carrier that I myself had been recommended frequently, to the point where I had to try it out just to satiate the masses. But, it paid off. This one’s main show-off point is that it’s impressively ergonomic for your baby.

Baby Carrier Harmony Silver - 3D Mesh BabyBjörn

Quick features:

  • Recommended baby weight/size is 3.2-15kg, 53-100cm
  • Airy mesh
  • Padded shoulder straps and back support
  • Pressure-relieving waist belt
  • Comfy and supportive
  • Offers head support in three different positions
  • Weight of carrier is 0.89kg

Pros: I was really impressed by how well this one held my baby comfortably. It’s very easy to pop them in and out of, they sit steadily, and there’s still a lot of freedom of movement in their legs – which some of the other carriers don’t offer. There were a few added safety features – like leg straps for smaller babies – that help get your baby in the healthiest sitting position, so it gave me much-appreciated peace of mind. Parents will also be happy to know that the lumbar support on this one is high quality and goes the distance. I could carry it comfortably for quite some time and there was no post-carry muscle soreness.

Cons: It’s definitely at a higher price (although not crazily compared to most baby carriers), so that might turn some families away. I could also see the back straps being less accommodating to smaller frames, as they are a bit on the bulky end. Petitie parents might want to skip this one. I was a little slow on figuring out how this carrier works – but I think that was more of a me problem. Once I followed the instructions and had a little play, it was pretty intuitive. There was an inner harness that was handy to get the carrier on and off swiftly, but did put a does put a degree of separation between you and your baby.

The best carrier for summer

There’s a reality to living in the Southern hemisphere; hence why you might want a baby carrier that feels light and breathable. To revisit Ergobaby (what can I say, I’m a fan!), their Omni 360 Cool Aircarrier is like a literal breath of fresh air.

Quick features:

  • Recommended weight for baby is 3.2-20kg
  • Ergonomic, forward-facing option
  • Adjustable from newborn to toddler
  • Lumbar support for extra back comfort
  • Includes detachable storage pouch
  • Breathable, lightweight all mesh carrier
  • Carrier weighs 0.77g

Pros: Even in the thickest throws of summer, this carrier keeps you and your baby nice and cool. I breezed through a whole beachside walk in December and didn’t need to air out any sticky limbs – huge tick from me! The mesh works like a charm. The fabric feels really soft and high-quality – like a plush cushion for your baby. Super snuggly, comfy, and snooze-friendly. Loved this one for taking on walks as the support really delivered when I needed it most. I also reckon this would be a good option for a long-term, durable carrier since it has a lot of customisation options for different heights, sizes, you name it. I also didn’t think it was as bulky as their other carriers so could be a good option for more petite frames.

Cons: I’ll preface this by saying that the support on this carrier is great, but I might’ve appreciated slightly more lower-back support. After a little while it got a bit achy, but I’d only make a point of that if you’re someone who specifically needs more support. Most should be fine! The main buckle that goes behind you is also likely a two-person job, so can be a struggle to put on yourself.

The best baby carrier to grow with your child

Another Baby Tula fave – this time, it’s the Free-to-Grow baby carrier. Designed to meet your child’s needs from newborn to toddler, this carrier promises to stick around in your family through many memories.

Seedling - Cotton Free-to-Grow Baby Carrier

Quick features:

  • Adjusts from newborn to toddler with customisation
  • Recommended baby weight is 3.2-20.4kg
  • Close, snug fit
  • Made from 100% cotton
  • Lightweight and breathable
  • Back carry and front carry options
  • Ergonomic seat with leg padding
  • Storage pocket
  • Carrier weighs 0.8kg

Pros: Just like the Explore carrier, the designs on this one alone are enough to hit add to cart. But there’s even more to love. There are so many ways to customise this baby carrier to fit your baby (and you) at every stage. Instantly you can tell that your baby’s comfort is front of mind in the carrier, from the comfy seat to the leg padding. It also cuddles your baby close to your chest for close physical contact, which is such a game changer for those tender moments. There was one walk where I went pretty uphill and I was impressed by how light my kid still felt on that incline – the carrier was the most comfy part of the whole walk. Whilst I only used it on my littlest bub, I can see how carrying it on your back would be great for older babies and toddlers (it’s meant to go up to four years!)

Cons: Because the carrier is quite customisable, it might take a bit of fiddling to get the hang of it at the start. But with some practice, you’ll be smooth sailing. Unlike some of the other carriers, it only has two carry positions (front and back), which does limit how you wear and carry your baby. But for most families, it’s fine. I even vacuumed wearing this carrier.

The best all-rounder baby carrier

The LILLEbaby Complete Carrier: This is similar to the Ergo 360 but allows for back carrying which is a major plus. This is probably my favourite all-around out of all the baby carriers I’ve tried – and it’s great bang for buck.

Quick features:

  • Recommended baby weight is 7kg-20kg
  • Padded shoulder straps and waist belt
  • Six carry positions (yep, seriously)
  • Contoured shoulder straps to distribute the load
  • Structured lumbar support
  • Two way adjustable straps
  • Reveal mesh panel for airflow to keep your baby cool
  • Padded head support for baby
  • Machine washable
  • Carrier weighs 0.1kg

Pros: So many carrying options! This is by far the most versatile baby carrier I’ve tried (and coincidentally, one of the most cost-effective). The lower back support is incomparable to any carrier in my opinion. I’d go so far as to say this is the best baby carrier for back support. There’s so much padding that cushions your body and lifts off the worst of the weight. The waist belt is also nice and wide. It’s a substantial carrier that I will probably use until my third baby is at least two. I also love how it supported my little one’s head.

Cons: The fabric at the baby’s legs can be a little rough when your baby isn’t wearing pants. My baby hasn’t seemed bothered but it’s something to keep in mind. Also, it’s bulky! This baby carrier is not going to fit in your diaper bag. That also makes it trickier to wash and dry with all the extra padding; it took me a couple of days on average to dry it properly The affordability was a plus for me, but you can also spot some of the places costs were saved. The buckles can be tough to use because of the material, and the straps can be a bit harder to tighten.

How I tested each baby carrier

Ok, you’re probably staring at this web page like “how in the world did she test all of these?”

Let me tell you, it was a mission. But one that paid off – because I’m pretty sure I’m a carrier con

Looking to my own family

Like I said, I’ve been through the baby carrier ringer. I know what’s worked for my family, why it’s worked, and how it compares to the other how ever many carriers I’ve tried. So the first place I turned to was my own personal experience and how each carrier boded with my kids over the years.

Surveying the office parents

We’re a parenting platform, so you can bet we’ve got a whole heap of parents in our team. New ones, experienced ones, parents with one child and parents with three. Whilst it was interesting that many parents had never used a carrier before (I’m hoping this piece will open their eyes) there were a good few with some strong opinions on the carriers they swear by.

Digging into the online forums

Research, research, research. No corner of the baby carrier internet went uncovered as I spent hours investigating which baby carriers are at the top of every parent’s list. That means wading through all the different carrier types – soft structured, wrap, hybrid – and picking out the standouts across the internet to try out myself. Everyone’s experience is different, so I consulted online forums, blogs, and posts from parents to touch base with what everyday families think of each carrier. Many of the key points across the board have been weaved into the reviews.

Putting them to the test:

Time to see if each carrier could actually walk the walk. When a carrier arrived, I started by seeing how easy it was to figure out and adjust (for both me and my husband) without and with instructions. That’s where I found out that some are definitely more intuitive than others. From there, I strapped in my youngest to do chores around the house, walk around the block, and do longer stretches on days out (one of which included a trip to the zoo) and shopping trips. I managed to get a few good hours out of each carrier, to see if it could go the distance. With the bulkier carriers, I washed each one and laid it out to air-dry to gauge how easy they are to clean – especially for a busy mum who does not have two days to spare.

Wrapping it up

I hope my (too many) baby carrier tests can help you narrow down your search. Or, at least give you some guidance on how to work through all the carriers and their different offerings.

You should be able to enjoy some hands-free adventuring, even with a little one snuggled close to you. Baby carriers offer that connecting of closeness and convenience; where you get the best of both worlds. For when you can’t stand the idea of separating from your little one, but face a giant to-do list unfurling in front of you. Carrying your baby has a wonderful role here. Trust me, I’ve done a lot of it.

At the same time, a baby carrier can feel like just another intimidating shopping list entity – so if you’ve got some questions, we don’t blame you. A great resource in Australia for babywearing parents is the Australian Babywearing Association. This group offers essential training for Perinatal Health Professionals, connects you with a trained babywearing consultant, and hosts educational events.

For general advice, read the following frequently asked questions that might clear things up for you.

And hey, if you’ve made it this far and still don’t know if you’re sold – you don’t have to be! Not everything is for every parent. Stick with what’s comfortable and empowering for you and your family.

FAQS: Frequently asked questions

How can I make sure my baby’s safe in the carrier?

Ensuring your baby’s safety while using a baby carrier is paramount to a positive and secure experience for you both. Here are some essential tips to keep in mind:

  • Follow manufacturer instructions: Always stick to the manufacturer’s guidelines for proper usage of the baby carrier. This includes weight limits, recommended carrying positions, and any specific safety precautions. The list may be long and eye-squintingly detailed, but it’s worth it.
  • Inspect the carrier regularly: Before each use, inspect the carrier for any signs of wear and tear, such as frayed seams, damaged buckles, or loose stitching. Discontinue use if you notice anything dodgy-looking that could compromise safety.
  • Position your baby correctly: Ensure your baby is positioned upright and snugly against your body (more cuddles are never a bad thing) with their face visible and clear of any fabric or obstructions.
  • Check for proper support: Double-check that your baby’s neck, head, and spine are nicely supported while in the carrier. Adjust any straps or inserts as needed to maintain proper alignment and prevent slumping or discomfort.
  • Monitor your baby’s comfort: Pay attention to your baby’s cues and signals while in the carrier. Keep an eye for signs of overheating, discomfort, or distress, and quickly adjust their position or take them out of the carrier if necessary.
  • Supervise at all times: Never leave your baby unattended while in the carrier, especially when bending over, leaning forward, or engaging in activities that could pose a risk. Stay vigilant and responsive to your baby’s needs throughout the carrying experience.

A catchy acronym to consolidate this info is what baby wearing safety experts call “T.I.C.K.S”

  • T  — Tight. The sling or carrier you use should be tight enough to keep your baby close to you.
  • I  —  In view at all times. You should be able to see your baby’s face by glancing down and without having to move the fabric.
  • C  —  Close enough to kiss. Your baby’s head should be as close to your chin as possible.
  • K  —  Keep chin off chest. You should be able to fit at least a finger between your baby’s chin and chest.
  • S  —  Supported back. Your baby’s back should be supported so that they are not slumped or curled into a C shape.

By following these guidelines and remaining attentive to your baby’s well-being, baby carriers are completely safe.

Free Mother Carrying Her Baby while Looking at the Nature Scenery Stock Photo

How many baby carriers do I need?

There are lot of baby carrier options – I know. But you don’t need to start setting up a separate bank account for them.

The number of baby carriers you need depends on your personal preferences, lifestyle, and parenting needs. While some parents might be content with one or two go-tos, others might like the luxury of choice for different situations and activities.

As a general guideline, I keep at least one wrap-style carrier and one more structured carrier in my arsenal at a time. A wrap carrier, such as the Solly Baby Wrap, offers a cosy and intimate bonding experience, particularly well-suited for newborns and young infants. Its soft, flexible fabric allows for various carrying positions and promotes close physical contact between caregiver and child.

On the other hand, a structured carrier, such as the Ergobaby Omni 360 or the LILLEbaby Complete Carrier, provides sturdy support and stability for both parent and baby. With padded shoulder straps, waist belts, and multiple carrying positions, these carriers offer versatility and convenience for active lifestyles and longer outings.

Ultimately, the number of baby carriers you choose will depend on factors such as your baby’s age and size, your comfort and preferences as a caregiver, and the activities you typically engage in together.

I really recommend trying out the types of carriers for yourself, borrowing from friends or family, or attending babywearing groups (yep, that’s a thing) to find the best fit for your needs.

What are some challenges to using a baby carrier (and what I can do about them)?

As helpful as a baby carrier might be for your family, it can also be confusing to get the hang of.

Here are some common hurdles, and how I’d approach them:

  • Learning curve: Many baby carriers, especially wrap-style or ring sling carriers, have a learning curve when it comes to proper tying or adjusting. Preparation is key, so consider practising with the carrier before your baby arrives or seeking assistance from online tutorials, babywearing groups, or local babywearing consultants.
  • Comfort issues: Some parents may experience discomfort or strain, particularly in the shoulders, back, or hips, when wearing a baby carrier for extended periods. To boost your comfort, check that the carrier is adjusted correctly, distribute weight evenly across your body, and take regular breaks to rest and stretch.
  • Baby’s positioning: Achieving the correct positioning for your baby, including proper support for their head, neck, and hips, can take some getting used to, especially for newborns or younger infants. Refer to the manufacturer’s guidelines for recommended carrying positions and if needed, reach out for guidance from experienced babywearers or healthcare professionals if you have concerns.
  • Temperature regulation: Babies can quickly become overheated while in a carrier, especially in warmer weather or crowded environments. To prevent overheating, dress your baby in lightweight, breathable clothing, choose carriers with mesh panels or breathable fabrics, and take breaks in shaded or cool areas as needed.
  • Parental confidence: You might feel uncertain or anxious about using a baby carrier, particularly if you’re new to babywearing. That is so normal, and completely understandable. Building confidence takes time and practice, so start with shorter wearing sessions at home and gradually increase the duration as you become more comfortable and confident in using the carrier.

Can I breastfeed while using a baby carrier?

You bet! As mentioned earlier, a baby carrier can actually support breastfeeding by offering convenience and flexibility for nursing mums, allowing them to breastfeed on the go while keeping their hands free.

Many baby carriers are designed to facilitate breastfeeding, but it’s still essential that you and your baby are comfortable and positioned correctly.

When choosing a baby carrier for breastfeeding, look for carriers with adjustable straps or panels that allow easy access to your breast. Some carriers feature discreet nursing covers or panels that provide privacy while breastfeeding in public. Practice adjusting the carrier and nursing positions at home before attempting to breastfeed while out and about to become more comfortable and confident with the process.

To breastfeed successfully in a baby carrier, follow these steps:

  • Adjust the carrier: Loosen straps or panels to create space for breastfeeding while maintaining a secure fit for your baby.
  • Position your baby: Ensure your little one’s head is supported and positioned correctly for breastfeeding. Your baby’s mouth should be level with your breast for a proper latch.
  • Adjust your clothing: Lift or loosen your shirt or top to expose your breast for nursing. Some mothers find it helpful to wear nursing-friendly clothing or a nursing bra for easier access.
  • Breastfeed comfortably: Support your breast with one hand and guide your baby’s mouth to your nipple for latching. Use your free hand to support your baby’s neck and head as needed.
  • Maintain proper alignment: Check that your baby’s nose is free and clear for breathing and that their body is aligned for optimal nursing comfort.

Breastfeeding in a baby carrier may require practice and patience to find the most comfortable and convenient positions for you and your baby. With time and experience, you might find that this is a simpler way to feed when you’re on-the-go and actively going about your day.






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