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Baby Carriers

Whether you’re snuggling with a sleepy newborn or trying to stay hands-free while you shop with your tot, baby carriers help you keep your child close while you’re on the go. 

Types of Baby Carriers

Wraps and slings, backpacks, mei tais, and soft structured models—baby carriers come in various fabrics, can be worn in numerous ways, and suit a variety of activity levels. You can further customize any carrier with a range of accessories.

Pros: Allow for a wide variety of holding options, including various front, hip, and back carriers. Designed for use with a range of ages (newborns to toddlers); protects a child from sun, wind, and touchy strangers. Convenient for breastfeeding, wraps are washable, easily adjusted, and usually more affordable than other carrier styles. Wraps are also ideal for those following an attachment-parenting philosophy, as they keep a child close to the body.

Cons: Because of the variety of styles and carry options, wraps can have a steeper learning curve Wraps and slings, backpacks, mei tais, and soft structured models—baby carriers come in various fabrics, can be worn in numerous ways, and suit a variety of activity levels. You can further customize any carrier with a range of accessories.

Wraps

A wrap carriers is a long piece of material (often cotton, but can be linen, silk, bamboo, or breathable mesh) worn twisted around the body. 

Pros: Allow for a wide variety of holding options, including various front, hip, and back carriers. Designed for use with a range of ages (newborns to toddlers); protects a child from sun, wind, and touchy strangers. Convenient for breastfeeding, wraps are washable, easily adjusted, and usually more affordable than other carrier styles. Wraps are also ideal for those following an attachment-parenting philosophy, as they keep a child close to the body.

Cons: Because of the variety of styles and carry options, wraps can have a steeper learning curve than other carriers (although most wraps come with printed directions and a DVD/online video for added instruction). Some parents find the wrapped fabric keeps them too warm while wearing Baby.
Shop Wraps
ERGObaby
$79.99 at Amazon

<div class="aplus"> <div class="two-third-col"> <div class="leftImage" style="width: 250px;"> <div id="image0"><img alt="" src="ht...tp://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/217zSJPcY4L.jpg" ><div class="imageCaption">Ergobaby Wrap in Pepper</div></div> </div> <div class="leftImage" style="width: 250px;"> <div id="image1"><img alt="" src="http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/21fG+8HeV2L.jpg" ><div class="imageCaption">Ergobaby Wrap in Clay</div></div> </div> <div class="leftImage" style="width: 250px;"> <div id="image2"><img alt="" src="http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/21M1mDWXlIL.jpg" ><div class="imageCaption">Ergobaby Wrap in Eucalyptus</div></div> </div> <h5><div id="header0">Ergobaby</div></h5> <div class="a-spacing-small" id="text0"><p>Ergobaby is the trusted brand for parents who value proper baby ergonomics and maximum comfort for the wearer. Ergobaby is proud to introduce the Ergobaby Wrap to offer parents a comfortable and convenient way to keep their newborn or infant close and secure, while allowing the wearer to move confidently and hands-free throughout the day. Like all Ergobaby products, the Ergobaby Wrap is specially designed to cradle your baby in a natural sitting position, aligning with the recommended carry position from the International Hip Dysplasia Institute.</p></div> <h5><div id="header1">The Ergobaby Wrap</div></h5> <div class="a-spacing-small" id="text1"><p>With the Ergobaby Wrap, there is a material difference. The Ergobaby Wrap features a luxuriously soft 4D Stretch material that produces the right amount of stretch for the perfect fit, doesn?t sag from baby?s weight to create long lasting support, and is movable in all directions to provide maximum comfort for both wearer and baby. Designed with newborns and infants in mind, the Ergobaby Wrap can be used from day one and throughout the first year (up to 31lbs) using different carry positions during different stages of your child?s development. With the Ergobaby Wrap, parents can keep their baby close and comfortable during all of life?s precious moments.</p></div> <h5><div id="header2">Comfort and Convenience</div></h5> <div class="a-spacing-small" id="text2"><p>Wraps are a comfortable and convenient way for a parent with a newborn or infant to keep their baby close while also allowing the wearer to move hands-free throughout the day. Babies love it because they are close to mom or dad and feel safe and secure.The Ergobaby Wrap can be used from day one, and baby will be carried in an ergonomic position with head and neck support, curved spine and frog-leg position.</p></div></div> <div class="third-col last"> <h5><div id="header4">When it comes to the Ergobaby Wrap, there is a material difference.</div></h5> <div id="list0"><ul id="list0inner"><li>The Perfect Fit: The right amount of stretch makes it easy to tie right.</li><li>Long Lasting Support: Doesn?t sag throughout the day from baby?s weight.</li><li>Exceptional Comfort: Moves in every direction with you and your baby.</li></ul></div> </div> <div class="break"> </div> </div> Read More

Didymos
$193.90 at Amazon

DIDYMOS Baby Wrap Slings are the most versatile of all styles of baby carriers. With a DIDYMOS, a baby can be comfortably and secu...rely carried in a cradle hold, front and back carries, AND hip carries. A DIDYMOS allows for it all. Since there are no belts or buckles, one simply ties a knot to secure the fabric. A DIDYMOS is fully adjustable to accommodate your baby as it grows, and can be worn in many different ways to create the ideal carrying position for you and your baby. Babies love to be carried. Right from birth, the DIDYMOS Baby Sling fully supports your baby, keeping them close, and makes them feel safe and comfortable. The baby sling is a wonderful accessory that allows for integrating baby care into everyday life, fully and completely. All DIDYMOS baby carriers come with detailed tying instructions for over 15 carrying methods and variations, in the form of a full color booklet and DVD. DIDYMOS, the company, has been making their baby carriers for over 35 years. They are experts in their field and have put much research into the physical and emotional needs of babies. DIDYMOS Baby Carriers support babies in proper anatomical positions, with optimum back and leg support so no stress will be placed on any part of your baby. All DIDYMOS baby carriers come with a 3 year warranty, and can be used from newborn to 3 years, and beyond. Sizes currently available are Size 5/420 cm for the petite wearer, Size 6/470 cm for those that are of average size, or tall and slim, and Size 7/520 cm for the wearers that need an bit more length. Size 5 to 7 allow one to tie ALL of the carrying positions, including the oh so comfy and secure Wrap Cross Carry. For those that prefer a simpler carrier, one could consider a size 2 or size 4 DIDYMOS. Although the tying options are more limited than with the sizes 5 7, the size 2/270 cm allows for a hip and cradle carry while the size 4/370 cm adds the option of a kangaroo or rucksack carry. Read More

Didymos
$207.80 at Amazon

DIDYMOS Baby Wrap Slings are the most versatile of all styles of baby carriers. With a DIDYMOS, a baby can be comfortably and secu...rely carried in a cradle hold, front and back carries, AND hip carries. A DIDYMOS allows for it all. Since there are no belts or buckles, one simply ties a knot to secure the fabric. A DIDYMOS is fully adjustable to accommodate your baby as it grows, and can be worn in many different ways to create the ideal carrying position for you and your baby. Babies love to be carried. Right from birth, the DIDYMOS Baby Sling fully supports your baby, keeping them close, and makes them feel safe and comfortable. The baby sling is a wonderful accessory that allows for integrating baby care into everyday life, fully and completely. All DIDYMOS baby carriers come with detailed tying instructions for over 15 carrying methods and variations, in the form of a full color booklet and DVD. DIDYMOS, the company, has been making their baby carriers for over 35 years. They are experts in their field and have put much research into the physical and emotional needs of babies. DIDYMOS Baby Carriers support babies in proper anatomical positions, with optimum back and leg support so no stress will be placed on any part of your baby. All DIDYMOS baby carriers come with a 3 year warranty, and can be used from newborn to 3 years, and beyond. Sizes currently available are Size 5/420 cm for the petite wearer, Size 6/470 cm for those that are of average size, or tall and slim, and Size 7/520 cm for the wearers that need an bit more length. Size 5 to 7 allow one to tie ALL of the carrying positions, including the oh so comfy and secure Wrap Cross Carry. For those that prefer a simpler carrier, one could consider a size 2 or size 4 DIDYMOS. Although the tying options are more limited than with the sizes 5 7, the size 2/270 cm allows for a hip and cradle carry while the size 4/370 cm adds the option of a kangaroo or rucksack carry. Read More

Summer Infant
$12.29 at Amazon

Wrap baby securely for a safer, better sleep. Extra soft, adjustable wings provide a perfect snug fit even for wiggly babies. Sec...ure design creates a cozy, womb-like feeling for baby and prevents the startle reflex that can wake up your infant. Designed with leading safe-sleep experts, SwaddleMe is trusted by parents around the globe. Read More

Slings

These swaths of material are worn over one shoulder to form a pouch to hold your baby. Slings can be either a circular piece of cloth with a fixed pouch or a rectangular length of fabric threaded through two rings and whose pouch size can be adjusted. 

Pros: A variety of carry positions, including front (facing in and out), hip, and back. Slings are simple to put on and remove; allow for discreet breastfeeding and easy to store in a diaper bag. Slings are available in a wide variety of materials, colors, and patterns, letting you express your style. 

Cons: Wearing a baby in a sling can become physically taxing if done for extended periods and as Baby gets older and larger. Circular pouch slings are sized, so it can be tricky to order one without trying it on. Ring slings’ design means that there will always be a drape of its extra material hanging in front of you—a potential annoyance for some.
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Peanut Shell
$44.99 $49.99 at Kohl's

The Peanut Shell adjustable sling allows you to be hands-free while keeping your baby close and secure. It features a no-slip safe...ty strap, a perfectly sized pouch, outside pockets as well as padded rails to protect baby's legs in the hip carry position. We use a cotton stretch, single-layer sling design featuring 97% cotton and 3% spandex. Adjustable slings are recommended for babies weighting between 8 and 26 pounds. Read More

The Peanut Shell
$44.99 $49.99 at Kohl's

The Peanut Shell Adjustable Sling - Whisper We get it; parenting takes some adjusting. Now you have a fashionable, durable and com...fortable baby sling in just one size. What could be easier? Our sling is truly one size fits all and features a no-slip safety strap, perfectly sized pouch and padded rails that make our sling the safest for you and your baby. We use a cotton stretch, single layer sling design that gives like a pair of stretch jeans featuring 97% cotton and 3% spandex. Recommended for use with babies between 8 and 26 pounds Product Dimensions: 1 x 9 x 28 inches Read More

Peanut Shell
$44.99 $49.99 at Kohl's

Padded, pouch-style sling cradles baby in the comfort of cotton with a touch of stretch. The no-slip safety strap adjusts as your ...little one grows. Color(s): tea time. Brand: Peanut Shell. Style Name: Peanut Shell Adjustable Baby Sling. Style Number: 304525_8. Manufacturer part number AJ-TEA Age range: birth to 36 poundsPadded rails Cotton/spandex; machine wash By Peanut Shell; imported Kids' Wear Read More

Rockin' Baby
$69.99 at Amazon

Our hero slings are light, soft, strong and versatile. This deep charcoal fabric is made out of soft, luxurious 100% cotton. A ful...l zip pocket is perfect for keys, a wallet or extra diapers. Machine wash cold, tumble dry low. Made in the USA. With every sling purchased, Rockin' Baby will donate a new sling to a mother, and educate her on its importance. Mother to mother. Read More

Mei Tai Carriers

Sometimes called Asian-style baby carriers, mei tais are a rectangular pieces of material worn on the front, back, or hip. Four straps secure them (usually one over each shoulder and two at the waist).

Pros: Made in a wide array of colors and patterns; can be used with infants and toddlers. They evenly distribute the weight of the child and can be adjusted from a high-back, looky-loo carrying position to a lower, nap-friendly carrying position.

Cons: May be tricky for those looking for a quick on/off carrier. Straps usually not padded and can dig into shoulders and hips. Depending on the design, some mei tai carriers may not provide enough support for newborns.

Soft-Structured Carriers (SSCs)

Able to be worn on the front, back, or hip, soft-structured carriers feature a rectangular piece of material secured to the wearer’s body with clasps and buckles. Some models keep the child in a seated position; others, in a vertical one. Although suitable for newborns through toddlers, some SSCs require a separate infant insert.

Pros: Soft-structured carriers provide a more streamlined look than other options. The carriers’ buckles and clasps offer a customizable fit for parent and child, and the padded shoulder straps—and in some cases, padded waist belts—increase comfort, disperse the child’s weight, and provide lumbar support for the parent. Often quick and easy to put on and place baby in. Also offered in more dad-friendly styles than other carriers.

Cons: Does not allow child to be worn directly on parent’s chest, which may disappoint those looking for that close contact. The design leaves a child’s legs unprotected, potentially exposing them to sun and wind. Soft-structured carriers can be bulkier than other options, making them harder to stash into a diaper bag or stroller basket. Some parents may also find the buckles and clasps burdensome or uncomfortable. 

Backpack Carriers

Suited for more active, lengthy outings (such as hikes or a day out), backpack carriers can be smaller models built into a traditional school backpack or larger options constructed on backpacking frames. Babies carried must be able to keep their head upright unassisted, making these carriers most suitable for kids 6 months and older.

Pros: Available in a wide variety of designs, sizes, and comfort levels, including lightweight models for short journeys to more substantial styles for longer trips. Many backpack carriers have additional storage pouches for diapers, snacks, and your own essentials.

Cons: Backpack carriers can be used in only one way. Models vary and may lack the adjustment options or sufficient padding you’d desire. Storage can be problematic because of the carrier’s bulky shape. Backpack carriers position the child high on your back, so hanging lights, door frames, and tree branches are potential hazards.

Carrier Accessories

Varying greatly by brand, carrier accessories include infant inserts, sun hoods/sleeping hoods, cover enhancements, weather covers, strap extensions, seat extenders, and bibs/drool clothes.

Infant insert: Certain carriers, such as mei tai or soft-structured ones, are not suitable for infants as-is, often because the children’s small size makes them sit too low in them. Although many models now include an infant insert or have been redesigned to not need one, some still require purchasing a separate accessory.

Sun hoods and sleeping hoods: These are optional accessories for mei tai carriers, soft structured carriers, and backpack carriers; they protect your baby from the elements and provide a shaded place for her to snooze.

Cover enhancements: Some carriers can be updated with additional swatches of material that you purchase and attach to them.

Weather covers: Waterproof weather covers fit over your carrier, providing warmth and protection from rain and snow.

Strap extensions: Strap extensions create extra sizing flexibility for shoulder and waist straps. 

Seat extenders: Seat extenders (available for some carriers) offer additional comfort and support for larger babies.

Bibs/drool cloths: Children often bite, suck, and drool over the front of their carriers. Easy-to-clean bibs or drool clothes cover this portion of the carrier, protecting it from marks and stains.
Shop Carrier Accessories
ERGObaby
$169.00 at Albee Baby Carriage

Perfect for new parents, ERGObaby's Bundle of Joy pairs the brand's famous baby carrier with the in-demand insert designed for new...borns.The convenient, ergonomically designed baby carrier is offered in pure, organic cotton and can be worn in front, back or hip position. Strategic padding ensures comfort for both adult and baby, while a stowaway hood protects slumbering little ones from sun and light rain-and also allows for discreet breastfeeding.The innovative insert is designed to slip quickly and easily in the ERGObaby carrier to offer newborns the support their developing bodies still need. Snap closures hold baby in a cozy, protected manner close to the heart. Color(s): navy. Brand: ERGOBABY. Style Name: ERGObaby 'Bundle of Joy' Organic Cotton Baby Carrier & Insert. Style Number: 884956. Manufacturer part number BCIIG6F14 Carrier fits adults from 5' to 65' Adjustable padded waist belt (26-55 in/66-140 cm) and shoulder straps offer maximum comfort and distribute weight evenly across wearer's hips and shoulders Carries babies from four months old to 45 lbs Adjustable hood supports baby's head while sleeping, protects baby from the sun and offers mom privacy while nursing Read More

ERGObaby
$180.00 at Albee Baby Carriage

The revolutionary 360 carrier lives up to its name by allowing parents four convenient carry positions: front-inward, front-outwar...d, hip and back. No matter how you wear it, the structured bucket seat will keep your baby comfortably and ergonomically seated, with a sun-shielding sleeping hood for on-the-go naps or privacy while nursing. Use the accompanying insert to support your newborn; take it out and use the carrier alone once your baby's a little older. From day one, you'll feel so comfy in the padded shoulder straps and extra-wide hook-and-loop waistband that the next time you and your little one visit the zoo, you might feel a certain kinship with the marsupials. Color(s): black/ camel. Brand: ERGOBABY. Style Name: ERGObaby '360 - Bundle of Joy' Baby Carrier & Infant Insert. Style Number: 1051923. Manufacturer part number BCII360ABKCM Fits adults from 5' to 65', with adjustable shoulder, waist and chest straps Recommended for infants from 7 lbs to 33 lbs Infant insert is recommended for infants from 7 lbs to 12 lbs Front-facing limit is 22 lbs Read More

The Peanut Shell
$21.59 $23.99 at Kohl's

Shield your baby from the elements in style with this infant carrier cover from The Peanut Shell. Product Features Front Velcro cl...osure Elastic outer band fits most car seats Product Details Cotton/spandex Machine wash Imported Promotional offers available online at Kohls.com may vary from those offered in Kohl's stores. Read More

BOBCP
$29.95 at Amazon

The Boba Mini is designed for carrying dolls and toys to help spread the joy of babywearing to children all over the world. The Bo...ba Mini matches our Boba Carrier 4G Classic Collection and is made with 100% Cotton. Just like the Boba Carrier 4G, the Boba Mini features a waist buckle and a chest buckle to keep dolls and toys secure. The Boba Mini is made for children ages 3 and older. Read More

Purchase Considerations

There’s a baby carrier suited to every taste and parenting style. But before selecting a model because it looks cute or was recommended by your cousin, bear in mind a few things. How would you like to carry the baby? During which activities will you wear the carrier, and how would you prefer to attach the carrier to your body? Will you be wearing the child for long stretches of time, and are your kid’s age and weight—or even your own physical limitations—potential factors? And, finally, will there be more than one caregiver using the carrier?

Carrying positions

Common carrying positions include front facing-in, front facing-out, cradle, hip, kangaroo-hold, hug-hold, high-back, and low-back. Some baby carriers offer only one or two options; others provide a half-dozen. More is not always better, but having various carry options can allow you to do a wider array of activities and help find that magic position to calm a fussy baby.

Activity types

Most carriers are comfortable for wearing around the house, but not all are suited to all home activities. You wouldn’t want to wear a front-facing carrier while cooking, and a backpack carrier isn’t the best way to transport a baby on the subway. Also consider if you’re planning to breastfeed while wearing the carrier. Some styles make this very convenient; others, nearly impossible.

Attachment style

When it comes to attaching the carrier to you, consider the ease, look, and comfort of the various options. Think about the locations where you’ll be putting the carrier on, how fast you need the on/off process to be, and any distracting elements that may take your attention away from attaching the carrier.

Length of wearing

Parents planning on wearing their baby for long periods should make sure to find a carrier that is padded, comfortable, and easily adjustable.

Age and weight limits

Many baby carriers suit a range of ages and loads, but some require additional accessories for infants, and others are better at distributing a child’s weight, making them more comfortable for those carrying older, heftier kids.

Physical issues

Some baby carriers are harder on certain body parts, such as sore shoulders or a weak back. Be sure to select a carrier that does not strain your injured areas and that provides adequate support and padding.

Multiple caregivers

If several people will be using the carrier, ensure that it is adequately adjustable and gender-neutral to allow all to wear it comfortably. Wraps, mei tai carriers, and ring slings are simple to tailor to multiple wearers, but the straps on some soft-structured carriers and backpack carriers require more time and effort. One-piece circular slings are available in a particular size and are trickier for caregivers to share.
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