I remember having a newborn and a toddler and trying to get everything done around the house while it was just me in those early very sleepless days. It was probably one of the hardest times I had while being a mother.
I know that somewhere all those years ago were baby carriers, but I do not ever recall seeing someone use one anywhere. When my first granddaughter came home at 2 days old, after being born premature, I knew that I needed to find a way to hold her more and still get everything done.
So, that led me down the road of trying to pick the best baby carrier for this little babe. As you may be aware there are so many different kinds that you almost have to have a couple of weeks to research them all. I will try to go over the most common and practical ones here.
There three most common and prevalent baby carriers are wraps, (both woven and stretchy) ring slings, and full buckle carriers. You can check out the buying guide at Baby Cubby here!
Stretchy Wraps- These are long pieces of stretchy fabric that you use to wrap the baby to you. One of the cons to these kinds of wraps is that they really cannot be used for babies over 15 pounds. Using them with a newborn is a dream as they are simple, you can tie them as tight as you need, so they are one size fit all. I will say there can be quite a learning curve, but with the many YouTube videos you are sure to find a way that works for you. The Ergobaby Wrap is a great stretchy wrap, also check out the Happy Baby Wraps, which comes in many patterns. Stretchy wraps are also an easy way to nurse on the go.
My favorite carrier for a little bit of an older baby is a ring sling. Many parents are great at using these for newborns, but for myself it was much easier when she was about 3 months old. The Sakura Bloom slings are so beautiful and are special with the thermal regulating fabric that makes it cooler to wear in hot weather. A ring sling is basically a long piece of woven fabric with no stretch that is held across your body with two metal rings. When it is put on you are basically making a pouch for your baby to sit or lay in and be held close to you. These are so great for travel as they fold small and are not as hot as a stretchy wrap. It also allows you to do quite a few different carries with one simple product.
This leads me to probably the easiest baby carrier to use for most people. The full buckle carrier like the Ergobaby Carrier is easy to use, has adjustable buckles and straps to fit a variety of sizes and shapes of people and can be used from newborn way into toddler hood. Most full buckle carriers are fitted with a hood for baby as well as suck pads, and pockets for mom’s stuff as well. The Ergobaby 360 is able to carry your baby in four different positions, you can use any one of them for your comfort as well as what position makes your baby happy.
No matter what carrier you choose to use, and there are so many more out there, make sure that they are tested and have a good rating with the Baby Carrier Regulations Alliance. Carrying your precious cargo in a safe and well tested carrier is the first and foremost thing. I have heard many horror stories of babies being hurt while being carried in an unsafe carrier.
While carrying your baby here is a check list of safe practices to keep your baby safe and close.
- Read and follow all manufacturer’s instructions for use, and watch any included DVDs, if applicable.
- Ensure you can see baby’s face at all times. Do not let baby’s face press into your body. Do not cover baby’s face with a blanket, sling fabric, nursing covers, etc.
- Baby’s head and neck must be gently and completely supported, with chin off chest. If baby’s chin is pressed tightly to baby’s chest, this can restrict baby’s airway. Check to ensure you can slip your finger between baby’s chin and chest to check for correct positioning.
- Consult an expert if your infant was born with a low birth weight, such as a preemie or twins, or if your infant has respiratory illness or other respiratory problems. Extra vigilance is required with these babies.
- After nursing in a carrier, remove baby from breast and return baby to proper carrying position with head above the breasts and face free of fabric and turned away from the mother’s body.
- Attend to and check on baby often, especially those under 4 months of age.
Enjoy your baby, enjoy your older children, ditch the bulky stroller and keep your littlest one close to you at all times, baby wearing is one of the best ways to calm a baby and keep doing what you need to all at the same time. You can see all of these carriers at The Baby Cubby, and while you are there check out all of the cubby picks for your little cargo! You can also find The Baby Cubby on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.