Volunteer and babywearing educator Carrie is starting up an awesome new series of posts that will hopefully help answer a question frequently heard in the babywearing world. Take it away, Carrie!
A common question we hear from new wearers is “What is the best carrier?”
The thing is, that’s a big question. There is no one perfect carrier for every caregiver, in every situation. There are, however, lots of great options for lots of different situations. So we are launching a new blog series called, “My favorite carrier for…”
In this series, we will poll our chapter volunteers to hear what their favorite options are for various scenarios. With warm weather approaching, our first post will be…
My Favorite Carrier for Wearing in the Heat
First, a disclaimer: summertime is hot. When you wear a baby in the summer, both you and baby will feel warm. This can be lessened in various ways, many of which are discussed in these blog posts:
Combining the tips above with a suitable carrier will set you up for summer babywearing success.
Many of our volunteers said that ring slings are their favorite options for warm-weather babywearing. We love ring slings because they require only one layer of fabric on you and one layer of fabric on baby, and allow plenty of airflow all around. Additionally, they are quick to pop Baby in and out of, and easy to put on. Many of our volunteers specifically like linen ring slings for warm weather. Thin cotton ring slings also do well in the summer. We have some great options in our lending library:
Sleeping Baby productions linen ring sling https://bwistlgateway.myturn.com/library/inventory/show/130614
Comfy Joey linen ring sling https://bwistlgateway.myturn.com/library/inventory/show/95255
Soul slings cotton ring sling: https://bwistlgateway.myturn.com/library/inventory/show/122862
Natibaby forest cotton ring sling: https://bwistlgateway.myturn.com/library/inventory/show/102241
Our volunteers love a woven wrap for summer wearing, especially with single-layer carries. (You can find a good list of single-layer carries here: http://www.amywrapsbabies.com/all-the-single-layers.html) In addition to choosing the right carry to keep everyone cool, it is also important to choose the right wrap. Once again, linen and linen-blend wraps are the clear winner for summer wearing. Linen wraps tend to be thin, supportive, and have excellent moisture-wicking properties.
Two linen blend wraps in our library are this Yaro Triskele Blue Violet: https://bwistlgateway.myturn.com/library/inventory/show/105174
and a long Didymos Marigold: https://bwistlgateway.myturn.com/library/inventory/show/95266
While many people think of wool for warm winter sweaters, it also has great temperature regulating properties. Wool blend wraps can be a surprising option for summer! The weave structure of a wrap also affects how it performs in heat. Thin wraps are always a good bet for summer, no matter the fiber content.
One thin cotton wrap in our library is this Diva Milano Essenza Lago: https://bwistlgateway.myturn.com/library/inventory/show/98391
And another is this red Storchenwiege Leo: https://bwistlgateway.myturn.com/library/inventory/show/95265
Additionally, many handwoven wraps are very loose and airy, which keeps everyone cooler. We have one boutique handwoven in our library, which is a super airy weave AND a cotton/linen blend: https://bwistlgateway.myturn.com/library/inventory/show/130425
Onbuhimos, which take their inspiration from traditional Asian carriers, are gaining popularity in the babywearing world. Our volunteers love them for wearing older babies in the heat because they are so simple. They have no waistband and open sides, which allows for plenty of airflow. Also, the child typically rides arms-out, which keeps them cool. We have several Onbuhimos in our library:
Lenny Lamb: https://bwistlgateway.myturn.com/library/inventory/show/135065
Full Buckle Carriers
Most of our volunteers do not prefer SSCs for the summer. While they can definitely be used in the heat, we find most SSCs to be bulky and hot, especially when compared to the other options listed above. Some carriers are made with mesh panels in the center, but in our experience the added airflow doesn’t make a significant improvement in comfort for the child. However, if a caregiver really wanted something with buckles, we would suggest a full wrap conversion carrier like this Lenny Lamb infant SSC: https://bwistlgateway.myturn.com/library/inventory/show/98457
or this Soul toddler SSC: https://bwistlgateway.myturn.com/library/inventory/show/124189
We think Bitybean and Boba Air are both thinner summer options. Other suggestions are seated carriers, like the MiaMily Hipster https://bwistlgateway.myturn.com/library/inventory/show/105169 or the Lillebaby SeatMe, which keep your wearee a bit farther away from your body.
We also have a Mountain Buggy Juno which has the unique feature of cooling gel packs that can be inserted into the carrier.
Thank you so much, Carrie, for compiling all this information on great carriers to wear in warmer weather, and especially tips on what to look for in our library! I’m maybe a little too excited about your next installment…
Do you have a favorite warm weather carrier that wasn’t mentioned here? Let us know! We’re all about options. 🙂