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After baby number three, I realized the only way to accomplish anything on my to-do list and keep my baby content is by babywearing. But I’ve also realized there is a bit of a learning curve, and it’s not always as easy as some moms make it look.
I am by no means a babywearing expert, but I’m a mom who loves babywearing and I hope that sharing my experiences will help other moms enjoy it as I much as I do.
Here are some tips that helped me figure out babywearing:
TIP #1: Try Before You Buy
This can mean a number of things: borrowing from a friend, finding a local babywearing group, or sometimes smaller boutique stores will walk you through their different baby carriers and let you try before you buy.
Or what I did, is ordered a few different carriers off Amazon that offered free returns. Then, I could try out each one in my home at times when I was sure my baby would be in a good mood, and decide which one (or ones 🙂 ) I liked best. And the ones that didn’t work for me, I sent back to Amazon.
TIP #2: YouTube Videos
Watching videos of how to use a baby carrier, especially for wraps and slings, was a lifesaver for me. When I opened my first wrap, and realized that it really was just a 10 foot long piece of cloth (and the instructions that came with were a bad English translation because I chose the cheapest one on Amazon), my first reaction was, nope.
But I had seen other moms use them, and their baby’s looked so comfy! I knew I had to at least try. Since my instructions were no good, I went to YouTube.
If you’re not sure where to start, definitely check out Wrapping Rachel. She has some of the best babywearing videos I’ve seen.
TIP #3: Mirrors
This one is a no-brainer, but I had to include it because I don’t think I ever would’ve figured out my baby wrap or ring sling without the help of a mirror. Even with my third baby, when I put him in a wrap as an infant I would check our reflection ( sometimes even with the side of my car) to make sure I had his position correct.
TIP #4: Practice
Practice using your baby carriers at home several times before using them out and about. This way if baby gets upset, or if the carriers need adjusted or re-tied it’s easier to stop, take a break, and come back to it later.
When I tried out a new carrier, I always practice and wear it around the house a couple of times – to vacuum or dust or just pace around while I talk on the phone. Then, if it seems like my baby likes and I’m still comfortable, I’ll go out for a walk with it on. If it passes the walk test, then I know that I’ll be comfortable wearing my baby in it out of the house, too.
So, What are my favorite baby carriers?
#1: Ring Sling
Pros: Versatility, use from newborn to toddler, lightweight, comfortable, easy to take on and off, breastfeeding friendly
Cons: Learning curve in the beginning, but pretty slight compared to wraps
I have used a ring sling with all of 3 my kids as infants and toddlers. I love their versatility, how easy they are to throw in your purse or diaper bag, and their price tag. This yellow-gold one I use ALL the time with my toddler is from Bibetts(not an affiliate link, but I really love their slings so I had to share.)
#2: Infantino Upscale Carrier
Pros: Comfortable for extended periods, easy to use, lightweight, can put on and take off quickly and easily
Cons: A little bit tricky to do the back carry without an extra pair of hands, and I could not find a position that worked for breastfeeding
Where to buy: Infantino Upscale Carrier
I love this carrier because it’s simple, super comfortable, and affordable. And I know I might be a loner here saying this, but I tried the LilleBaby (two different versions!) and I just didn’t like it. The waist strap on the LilleBaby carrier was hard and rubbed my sides, and it just felt bulky and uncomfortable. I also couldn’t wrap my head around why it was so expensive.
After trying LilleBaby, I ordered the Infantino Upscale Carrier. I was a little unsure about it because there weren’t many reviews, but I liked how easy it looked to use and the price was on point with my budget. I also loved that the color and design was gender neutral, because my husband could use it, too.
It has definitely exceeded my expectations. I bought it about a year ago, when my youngest was 5 months old and I have used it (and still use it) almost as much as my sling.
Recently, I used my Upscale to carry my toddler for a day trip to beautiful Seven Falls in Colorado Springs, Colorado. And while I don’t recommend this (it was so hard and a little scary!), I even wore him (all 25 pounds of him!) all the way up the 224 steps it takes to get to the trail, and of course, all the way back down the 224 steps. This carrier was amazing, secure, and I had no discomfort at all. Well, except for my thighs – all those stairs made them burn!
#3: CuddleBug Wrap
Pros: lightweight, great for newborns to toddlers, breastfeeding friendly, comfortable
Cons: A bit of a learning curve, takes more time to put on and position
Where to buy: CuddleBug Wrap
I have such mixed feelings about wraps, and I think that’s because there is a higher learning curve. I only got the hang of using one with my youngest, baby #3. I don’t know if it’s because I was using them wrong or buying the wrong ones, but they are hard to figure out!
When my youngest was a newborn, I really wanted to give wraps one more shot. I love how newborns always look so comfy and cozy in them. So, I bought the CuddleBug wrap from Amazon. It looked really soft, it was affordable, and it had a lot of positive reviews.
Well, I am happy to report that I loved it! After a little practice and a little YouTube, I found that it wasn’t as hard to use as I thought, and my baby definitely loved it. I love how soft it is, and how comfortable he was in it. I also loved the all the different positioning options and that I was able to breastfeed while wearing it.
This wrap was a clear favorite during infancy, but I’ll admit that I don’t use it as much now that he’s a toddler – I prefer my sling and Upscale carrier – but this wrap can definitely still be used to carry a toddler.
Anyway, thanks for stopping by and I hope you found this useful! Have a beautiful day!