Ben is approaching his first birthday and we’ve done a whole lot of babywearing in his first year. We’ve graduated from a couple of our favorite wraps/carriers and learned which carriers work best at which stages and in which situations. If you want a thorough review of each carrier, check out my original post.
I initially adored the Solly baby wrap and still think it’s probably the best option for a newborn. It’s so secure and snuggly and Ben spent months taking nearly all of his naps on my body (While I had free hands. Woo hoo!). As he got bigger and more curious, the fabric of the Solly kind of blocked his view so he stopped enjoying it and we retired it (until the next kid).
Later we were gifted a hand-me-down Baby Bjorn* (This is an affiliate link. All other affiliate links are also marked with an asterisk). As soon as Ben could be safely placed in the outward facing position, this became our favorite. It was his favorite too. He was always happy to be strapped to us, facing forward. Plus, it was super easy to get him in and out of. It could be thrown on to walk Archie or run a quick errand.
Around this time I also started getting more comfortable with the Wildbird. Ring slings take a little practice but soon he was settled in a deep seat and enjoying it.
Once he hit about 15-17lbs., the Baby Bjorn started to really kill our backs. We started to phase it out though I assure you, we got tons of use out of this for months. Also, since N is only comfortable with the Wildbird if I fully set it up for him, this is still the carrier he uses to quickly walk Archie.
Since we now definitely need more back support, we started using the Ergobaby 360* for any long walks or adventures. This is also the carrier that N now uses most often.
I have found that I feel like the Ergobaby feels too bulky on me. Ours is not the “cool mesh” one so it also feels like a lot of padding and is therefore hot for both me and Ben in the recent temperatures. I do think it worked very well in the winter though over coats and felt the most secure when Ben was bundled up in a bunting.
Ben loves facing outward and is always very content in the Ergo. I’ve also tried it on my back a few times, which is fun but Ben gets a little squirmy when he feels like he can’t see what’s going on. Truthfully, recently I only use the Ergobaby if we’re going to the zoo (the stroller just isn’t tall enough for him to really see and enjoy everything).
My all-time favorite baby carrier? It’s got to be the Wildbird. Even as Ben has gotten heavier, it disperses his weight across my back and shoulder pretty evenly and doesn’t cause back pain. It’s definitely the fastest baby carrier (watch their insta stories to get good at setting up your sling!). I use it every day to walk Archie in the afternoon. Ben even does the cutest excited leg kicks and arm flails when I put it on and Archie gets all wound up and thinks it means he’s going for a walk.
Sometimes if Ben’s being extra fussy (thanks, teething) I put him in it and it really seems to calm him down. He occasionally tries to stand up in it by straightening his legs but it’s pretty easy to get him back in the proper position and I’ve never been worried that he’s going to fall out.
Lately, I’ve been pondering the idea of buying the double layer Wildbird. They say it provides more support for heavier kids, more warmth, and is best for experienced ring slingers. I’d say that’s me at this point. It’s become such a part of our everyday life and I just don’t foresee me not using it anytime soon. Walking is still pretty far off for Ben so it’s what I grab anytime I’m just popping out for a few and don’t want to deal with the stroller. I’m also looking forward to trying the Wildbird with a newborn some day (I didn’t buy it until Ben was a few months old).
Anyway, if you have any questions about babywearing, I’m all ears. It’s been one of my favorite parenthood discoveries and I intend to keep doing it for at least 5-10 more pounds of Ben. It makes life in the city such a breeze.
If you do a lot of babywearing, tell me, how long did you use your carriers? Was there a weight or developmental milestone that made you stop? Help a girl out, I’m trying to justify buying that second Wildbird 😉