when i started researching baby carriers, i was so overwhelmed. i didn’t want so much baby STUFF. the plethora of choices is mind blowing, and everybody you ask recommends something different. i logged hundreds of hours doing research on the best baby products…
… and hundreds more whittling it down to what i thought i really needed, which is of course impossible to know until your baby arrives, and you’re in the thick of baby land. i now have the benefit of hindsight and can tell you what worked and works for me.
why do you need to wear your baby upright? you don’t have to, and you’re not any less of a mama if you don’t, but it’s better for you, and for your baby.
not only is it practical and convenient, and allow you to be handsfree so you can do things while you’re holding the baby, you get to so easily lean your face forward and kiss their sweet downy head a million times a day, and feel the incredible bond… plus… wait for it…
your baby will cry less, sleep more, be happier, be healthier, gain weight faster, have better coordination, more muscle tone, better balance, feel more secure, become independent faster, be more calm and alert, be less stressed, have a more stabilized heart rate, breastfeed better, have better immunity, etc etc etc. are there scientific studies to back these statements up. yes, absolutely.
separation of mother and newborn causes the release of the toxic stress hormone cortisol, which negatively impacts immune function. but carrying a baby in your arms a lot is not practical, unless you have full time cleaning, cooking, and everything help. even then, it’s safer to hold your baby in a carrier.
i’ve tried on dozens of baby carriers to find the perfect one(s), hoping i could just find ONE product that did it all, but until i can design it myself, it doesn’t exist. so until then, here’s the top 2 carriers you need, and why:
1. Boba Wrap 0-6 months
when i say you need this for your baby from 0-6 months, i mean it. the first few months are what is referred to as the 4th trimester, when baby really craves to be in the womb, and you want to recreate that environment by swaddling, white noise, and the Boba Wrap.
i started using mine after the first couple of weeks that i needed for recovery when i was basically lying in bed with the baby most of the time. the Boba Wrap was a lifesaver for me.
it was used mainly for defcon purposes initially, i.e. to avert and resolve baby meltdowns. when the baby was crying (which sounds better than screaming), and i didn’t know why, and nothing else worked, i’d put her in the wrap, and within 5 minutes, she was peaceful, and asleep. MAGIC! and when she was not wanting to spend as much time in the moses basket, i’d strap her in and do chores, walk around etc.
she felt snug, cozy, close to mommy, hearing my heartbeat, like in the womb. as a mommy to a newborn your job is to meet her needs for love, security, warmth, comfort, sleep, and milk. this will help with all of that.
their heads are too soft and their necks too wobbly in the beginning for other types of carriers, which are not supportive and comfy for newborns. yes, the Ergobaby has an infant insert, and I tried it repeatedly. it’s just not as comfortable for newborns, it doesn’t swaddle them as softly, or keep their heads snug against your chest.
if you want to enjoy comfortable meals out, and have a baby that’s getting the naps it needs, this is the one. the fabric is soft, easy to put on, and looks like it’s part of your outfit even when you take the baby out. and most importantly, sitting with a baby in the Boba Wrap is super comfortable, unlike other carriers.
it’s also THE item you need for traveling with a newborn. don’t even think of flying without one. you can nurse in it, you can throw it in the wash, you can leave it on all day, as a piece of clothing, and just pop baby in and out when she starts fussing.
when the baby gets heavier, you will want to switch to a more supportive structured carrier. for me this happened around 5 months.
did i use this almost every day for five months? yes. did it mean less fussing, less crying, less ear piercing screams, yes. did it mean i got to go out and have meals in restaurants with a quiet baby, yes. is it an incredibly beautiful and liberating feeling to have your baby safely strapped to your chest where you can see and hear her breathing, know her airways are open, know she’s in her happy place? YES.
I got the Stardust pattern, which is NOT available on Amazon, but is on Target. Amazon only has the Boba Wrap in Grey and in other colors, but i loved the pretty pattern. the color is gender neutral, and you feel like you’re wearing a cute top that happens to be a Kangaroo pouch.
2. ErgoBaby 5 – 18 months
the ErgoBaby is fantastic for when the baby is bigger, taller, and heavier (from 4/5 months on, when you don’t need the infant insert anymore). it supports the weight across your back, shoulders, and hips, and supports baby’s spine softly.
unlike the BabyBjorn, it keeps the baby’s hips in a safe froggy position, instead of letting the legs dangle out of the hip sockets, which can negatively impact their development. plus it doesn’t torque the baby’s spine by being held outward.
facing mommy or daddy upright with legs tucked or in the froggy position is the ergonomically correct and safest way to carry a baby.
another plus is that it’s adjustable and works for tall guys! my husband is 6’6″, and wears the ErgoBaby a lot, and comfortably, whereas the Boba Wrap was never comfortable for him, or the baby.
my brother, also a tall guy at 6’4″, babysat my baby when she was 5 months old, and I told him, just walk around with her in the carrier, and she will be chill, and fall asleep. he was terrified, but he did a great job. i got to have a full body massage at a spa, and she was still sleeping when i got out. MAGIC.
going on longer walks is much easier in the Ergo, although the baby gets heavy after a while no matter what. it’s a workout, especially when the baby weighs 20 pounds! but it’s a lot more convenient than lugging the heavy carseat around with the baby. of course you carry the baby less and less as it gets older, because it can sit up on its own, and needs lots of floor time etc.
but when you need to get mobile, it’s either the stroller, depending on terrain and convenience, or the carrier, or a combo of both. often the baby will get fussy in the stroller and want to be held, or need to fall asleep, and you’ll be in the middle of a meal. enter the ErgoBaby.
have i dropped chocolate and cookie crumbs on my baby’s delicious noggin? yes!
i got the ERGObaby Original Baby Carrier, Galaxy Grey. i love the stitched stars, and it’s gender neutral, and blends in with my outfits. the Galaxy Grey is also on Target here. i just found this cute new anchor design on Target called sea skipper. might have gotten this one if it had been available when i was preggo.
if you want to know WHY i recommend the above over other carriers, such as BabyBjorn, Moby, Kozy, Baby K’Tan, etc etc, leave a comment with a specific question, and I will happily respond.