Eleanor does not like to be put down. Therefore, I’ve ended up with a nice assortment of baby carriers all in a valiant effort to regain the use of both hands.
Eleanor and I both love our mei tai from BabyHawk. She likes to be held in the ‘snuggle hold’ (tummy to tummy with me), so she was comfortable in this one from the start. The head rest is stiff enough to be supportive, but I fold it down sometimes too so Eleanor can look around more easily. Oh, and the fabric choices are excellent! Mine is pink and brown, natch. The drawbacks: The shoulder straps are so long that they tend to drag on the ground and get dirty while getting the carrier on and off, and they also make it difficult to fold the carrier up. When you have time, you can fold the whole thing up into a nice little rectangle that fits neatly in your diaper bag. When you don’t have time, you end up doing what I do and just stuffing it into your bag in a wrinkly pile that takes up a ton of room.
My other two carriers are both slings.
The slings took more getting used to for Eleanor, but she’s happy in them now and I like each one for different reasons. The one that I’m wearing in the photo is from hotslings. It’s comfortable and it has minimal padding, so it’s incredibly easy to fold up. It also keeps Eleanor a little cooler than the mei tai. The only drawback is that it is sized very specifically and it isn’t adjustable. I’m not sure that it’s a drawback really, it’s just something to keep in mind.
My other sling is by Balboa Baby. It has padding on the shoulder strap and along the edges – very comfy but the padding makes it bulkier. It’s sewn into a slightly more structured shape too, which makes it harder to fold up. I like that it’s adjustable, but the padding on the strap makes it difficult to adjust and it’s not easy when your baby is still in the sling. If I were to buy another ring sling, it would be a Maya Wrap. There is still some padding in the shoulder, and there is a lot of extra fabric at the tail, but you can use that extra fabric as a nursing cover.
And speaking of nursing… I go out with Eleanor fairly often, and figuring out how to nurse her while she’s still nestled in a carrier will be liberating! We’re still learning, but these videos have been helpful so far: How to nurse in a sling and how to nurse in a mei tai.
p.s. I was able to take, edit, and upload that photo, AND write this post, all while Eleanor slept in her sling. Do you know how amazing that is? I typed with both hands and everything.