You may have noticed that we think carrying your baby is a big deal. This practice is timeless and provides countless benefits to your family. Holding your baby high on your chest as a newborn allows parents to cue into early hunger cues, encourages parents to narrate their activities supporting language development, and helps your little one learn how to respond to a variety of stimuli from the environment as they perceive your own facial expressions. We’ve provided several recommendations below to assist you in your baby carrying journey.
Questions to consider when selecting a carrier:
- Who will be carrying your baby? - Unstructured carriers such as wraps and ring slings allow for an almost unlimited customizing of the fit for a wide range of body sizes. Soft structured carriers like the Beco Gemini are not quite as adjustable and may not be able to be shared by caregivers who have disparate body sizes.
- How many carriers do you ultimately want? - Some soft structured carriers like the Ergo OMNI 360 allow you to carry your baby from newborn up to 45 pounds. This carrier will grow well with your baby. The soft fabric of the Moby Fit or Ergo Embrace gently shape to the frame of your newborn against your body and create the safe feeling of being held in the womb. These carriers have a weight limit of 25-33 lbs. Some folks choose one and make it work for their family as long as they carry their baby with the support of a carrier. Other families have a “wardrobe” of carriers and select the carrier that best fits the activity they are engaged in.
- When/where will I primarily be carrying my baby? - If you plan to carry your baby around the house during your parental leave and snuggle your little one in those early days consider purchasing a ring sling or wrap. These carriers allow for a cozy fit, and your little one won’t be able to resist falling asleep. Ring slings are incredibly agile as they allow for endless carries, and quick changes when your baby becomes mobile and begins to explore their surroundings, but still wants to see the world from your point of view. Structured carriers are usually appealing for families who spend a significant amount of time outdoors as they distribute some weight on to your hips, allow for comfortable front facing carries and offer a more comfortable back carry when baby has the muscle control to change positions.
- Using baby carriers is a skill that must be practiced with your baby. We recommend practicing in a safe, comfortable place in your home when your baby is happy (not ready for a nap, not hungry, and has a clean diaper).
- You can use a carrier with your baby as soon after birth as it is comfortable for you. It’s also a wonderful bonding experience for the non-birthing parent.
- YouTube videos are great, and it is also helpful to have hands-on support. Visit Natural Resources to chat with one of our staff members, schedule a one-on-one consultation for private time to focus on the specific needs of your family, or attend Baby Wearing Basics to learn more about different carries with multiple carriers.
My favorite is the Moby! because my husband would put it on and wear our babies all over the place in those early months. He'd take off his shirt and do skin to skin, snuggle a baby in there, and do his thing. It was such a sweet and special way for him to connect to the baby - and give me a break. We had the same grey Moby for all three kids and when I got pregnant with Faye one of his first comments was how excited he was to carry her in the Moby. - Alice L.
You can view our curated selection of carriers by clicking here.