Tuesday, July 12, 2011

so I have a little problem...

My husband told me I needed to write a confessional blog about my addiction to baby carriers.

Ok...it's true.

I love baby carriers. I might have too many. And for a self professed baby minimalist that's a little embarrassing to admit...but that doesn't mean I'll be getting rid of any of them...oh no.
I love each one for different purposes and when you're a stay at home mom-on-the-go I think it's important to have many comfortable options for carting around that bundle of joy.

Now I admit...this isn't a frugal addiction to have. Many baby carriers cost as much, if not more, than a pair of diamond earrings. But there are inexpensive options out there my friends...oh yes...if you're hoping to have more than one, like me.

So here's what we have and why I like them:

 *Baby Bjorn This is the standard go-to in baby carriers, and the first carrier we owned. I love it because it's sleek and stylish and sporty (both men and women look great wearing this) and it's the least complicated carrier to put on. The fast clips make it super easy. This is my baby carrier of choice when heading into the city for quick trip or especially while boarding an airplane. Baby can face in or out--out is quite fun for baby and this is one of the few carriers that have this option...Gunnar does the happy dance when he's facing out!  Downsides: you don't want your baby to be in it for extremely long stretches as there have been studies that this kind of carrier might cause hip dysplasia when used too often (which is another reason why I have more than one), also when worn for too long this carrier puts a lot of stress on my lower back. It's also on the pricier side.

*Hoppediz This is our woven wrap carrier that we got when Gunnar was just a few weeks old. We went to a baby wearing class and tried on every carrier there is and found this to be the most universally comfortable.  There are about 10 different ways to carry baby in this wrap and it is extremely comfortable for both you and baby. When Gunnar was 4 weeks old I wore him around the mall all day long in this and (he slept like an angel the whole time) and I was able to get my Christmas shopping done easy-pa-cheesy! It can be worn with little or no clothing and it's completely possible to nurse your baby while wearing! Downsides: there is a learning curve on this...and I have to say it has prevented me from using it whenever there was a time crunch. Hard to store as it is very long (we learned a pretty knotting technique which condenses it somewhat but still quite big), and I wouldn't even think of wearing it in summer...too hot. There is a lighter version made by Hoppediz or the Moby Wrap is a similar lighter weight carrier (although I've heard it's not as strong a carrier and can stretch while wearing)

 *Infantino Ecosash Baby Carrier This is an inexpensive knock off of the Mei Tai Wrap which was another carrier we tried in the baby wearing class and loved (although if you're only going to get one carrier and you're all about being fashionable you can design your own Mei Tei which is pretty darn cool!). Anyways I was able to find this knock off carrier (an older version than the one shown) at TJ Maxx on clearance for $14.99!! This carrier is a semi structured carrier with padded shoulder straps which make it quite comfy. It's sort of a cross between the wrap and the baby bjorn. It's not quite as complicated as the wrap but not as easy as the Baby Bjorn. Babies knees are higher than his butt on this carrier so no risk of hip dysplasia. Can be worn on front or back. Downsides: There are instructions for how to face baby out in this carrier but I still haven't been able to do it. Getting baby on your back requires a second person's help. And for some reason Gunnar doesn't like this carrier us much as the baby bjorn...his view is a little restricted.

 *Munchkin Jelly Bean Reversible Sling I totally bought this carrier on a whim at Target for $20.  It was cute and stylish and reversable and I figured I'd give it a try (after all I have an addiction...might as well feed it...right?).  This carrier is sort of hit or miss. Baby can sit facing out (as shown), on your hip or on your back. It's hit or miss because you really have to take the time to adjust your baby to make it most comfortable for both of you...and sometimes Gunnar's legs just won't do what I need him to do to make it comfy. But sometimes we get it just right and it is super snuggly baby cuddles folks. What I love about this sling is it packs up really small (can fit easily in my diaper bag without taking much space), It washes well and is extremely light. Downside: This carrier is not intended for babies under 18 lbs. Gunnar isn't quite 18 lbs yet so I think that's why it's not always comfortable yet. If worn for too long it can put a strain on the carrying shoulder. 

* Infantino Ergonomic Carrier So many friends have highly recommended the Ergo or Beco Butterfly carriers which was the only carrier recommended at our baby wearing class that they didn't have available for us to try. Well this is another knock off of those brands. The lower padded belt helps to support your lumbar muscle (which prevents that lower back pain some carriers give you). I'd say this carrier is great for longevity...when you're taking baby on a hike or for a long day to the zoo...this will keep baby cozy and you comfy all day long. I recently found this carrier at Marshals for $39.  Baby can be worn tummy to tummy or on your back like a backpack. This is the only carrier, other than the hoppediz that Gunnar has taken a nap in. I love the pocket in front for my cell phone! Downsides: It's tricky to put this carrier on by yourself. I am able to get it on without help but not in the most comfortable position...the snap on the upper back is just hard enough to reach.  When baby is riding tummy to tummy...again...limited view for baby.

And I'm afraid to say I still would love to get a Maya Wrap ring sling or a Moby Wrap and I certainly wouldn't refuse a gift of a name brand carrier of any of the knock offs I currently own. Yep...that's addiction folks. Are there support groups for this?


  1. I did keep my Bjorn, because it works so well for newborns, but I sold my Ergo and my Lillebaby once I tried Kelly's Becco Butterfly II. It actually solves the problem of that hard-to-reach snap and not only does that make it a breeze to get on, but it's infinitely more comfortable - I can carry M in it for an hour's hike and he's 22 lbs! Basically you snap that snap before you put the baby into the carrier, and before you put the carrier over your head. That way it sits mid-back instead of higher on your neck - a place you could NOT reach with the Ergo or Lillebaby but SO much more comfortable. Then the baby goes on the front, and two snaps come up over the baby to your shoulders to secure them in. It keeps the baby closer to your body than the others do because of where the back and waist snap are positioned - this means his center of gravity is more closely aligned with yours which is always more comfortable. If you want to go back to minimalist and still have the perfect carrier for every situation, I'd keep the Bjorn (maybe - maybe not, haven't tried the Becco with a newborn yet) and get the Becco!

  2. We have two backpacks and a Moby and I thought that was pushing it! lol. But, atleast you're enjoying being a momma!

  3. I thought i was bad with a Bjorn knock off, a Moby, and a Rebozo! haha! The Moby isn't going to be any better than the long wrap you already have. It's too hot for us to use right now and, because it's stretchy, it's not as supportive as baby gets bigger (Emma just hit 18 pounds too).

    I love my Rebozo, I wear it like a ring sling (except knotted where the ring would be). I bought it from a company that pays women in a village in Mexico to make them by hand with plant-based dyes.

    I've heard great things about the Bobo carrier too but it's too pricey for us!