We love wearing our kids! Here are some reasons I love to wear my babies:
1. Baby wearing makes life easier. No giant car seat to lug around. No honking stroller to navigate through slush or stores. You can make dinner using two hands. You can fold laundry using two hands. Baby will be pleasantly entertained by experiencing life from an active perspective and will also be lulled to sleep by your movements. Happier baby, happier mama! Win-win!
2. Helps with development. If the alternative is laying in a crib or being strapped in a car seat, baby wearing provides a way better environment for baby to use their neck muscles and brain muscles too.
Those are my two main reasons, but Laura Simeon lists ten right here if you want more.
So! Since we love baby wearing, we have a variety of baby carriers. So here is my review:
BECO 4th Generation
The Beco came highly recommended. The old 4th Generation models (which allow skin to skin contact unlike the Butterfly) seem quite coveted in baby wearing circles. They’re expensive, they’re pretty. I was expecting to instantly love it above all other carriers. But I didn’t. First I tried to wear it while very pregnant. This didn’t work at ALL since all the weight went to my shoulders and would not rest on my hips (tummy got in the way). Now that I am wearing my newborn in it and have it fitted properly, I enjoy it but I still have some complaints. I find it hard to do up and get comfortable in alone. If I have help around who know how to adjust it how I like it (my husband) then all is well. I find that my newborn can work her legs down and out of the bottom of the carrier. I find that it does not stay on my hips properly and I have to do it up around the smallest point of my waist. If I wear it on my hips and try to empty the dishwasher, pee, garden, do laundry or do ANYTHING other than walk around upright, the waist band slides up and Meeps starts to come out the bottom.
Update: Now that Meeps is 8 months, we are using the BECO way more for back carry. It is really easy to get her into and really comfortable to wear her for limited amounts of time. I find if I am wearing her for more than 2 hours at a time, I am toast!
This one has been a real winner. My husband (who is a much bigger person than I) wears it too and also loves it. Wide variety of prints to chose from. (He chose the black skull & barbed wire print we own). Washes great. Easy to learn to use, easy to put on alone. Back carry is also really easy! One dry run and and you’re ready to rumble. Absolutely no complaints about how it holds my kids from newborn through toddler.
PEAPOD CUDDLY WRAP
My first wrap. Wraps don’t work for some mamas. I’ve bought a couple to give to new mamas, and always wind up getting them back to regift. So clearly, they are not for everyone. But they are for me. After a few practice runs, I was using my wrap with no problem and can put them on in my sleep I think. Holds for newborns and small toddlers are endless in variety, there are so many ways to tie on kids!
The CuddlyWrap is super soft. The jersey is nice and thick. This has pros and cons. It’s great for winter, not for summer. Quality material though. But hot to wear. Also because of the stretchy nature of the material, once babe hits 17-25 pounds, they’re really to heavy for it and it becomes uncomfortable for both parties.
ULTIMATE BABY WRAP
The Ultimate Baby Wrap is made of cheaper material than the CuddlyWrap. Even though I like the material less, it’s lighter. And therefore I like to wear it more. (I’m hot enough already carrying a baby!)
HOT SLINGS Pool Pouch
I hate the Solarveil material of the Hotslings Pool Pouch. It’s scratchy and hasn’t softened despite numerous washings. But it works. It was the only way I could get a shower in with Bob for the last year. It worked. I hated it, but it worked. And I am using it again with Meeps. I would smell terrible and have no friends if it weren’t for this sling.
NEW NATIVE POUCH
We’ve got a regular, no frills pouch sling from New Native. It fits me a bit big as it is a loaner, but this means it also fits Scott (though a bit small). Despite this, we can both wear it pretty comfortably and they are just SO easy to use. No adjusting. Soft material, washes great. Bob hated to be in pouch slings as in infant, but Meeps liked it. And both have enjoyed sitting up in it on my hip, so it has proved quite useful. For very prolonged or active wear though, a pouch sling is just not comfortable.
I recently obtained (summer 2009) a Didymos wrap. It is beautiful and has taken 1st place for comfort. I am not kidding, it has completely stolen the show. The material is more utilitarian than luxurious (but I have one of the jacqaurds). I can wear my one year old far more comfortably and for longer periods of time with the Didy than with any other carrier I own. If only I had one of these from the beginning of my baby wearing career, I don’t think I would have ever strayed!