When you have a newborn, infant or toddler, it can be difficult to get anything done. Newborns may cry every time you set them down, and toddlers frequently need your attention. You can give children the care they need while holding them in a soft baby carrier. A carrier can be used by both men and women to keep their hands free while they’re attending to their baby. Here are our top picks for the best soft baby carrier.
Smart Mom Pick for 2016 – Tula Soft Baby Carrier
Tula baby carriers have set the standard for creating intelligent, versatile and long-lasting carrier designs. The brain-child of two passionate and inventive parents, these award-winning carriers allow moms and dads to comfortably and fashionably support their children while on the go.
Tula carriers can ingeniously be worn with the child in the front or in the back, allowing for versatility and superior comfort. Tula has created the M-position seat for optimal support of baby, and parents benefit from an ergonomic design that allows for comfortable distribution of weight. Available in two sizes, the baby carriers can accommodate weights from 15 to 45 pounds, and toddler sized carriers may be used from 25 to 60 pounds. When purchased in combination with the Tula Infant Insert, the baby carriers can even be used from birth. A removable hood is included for head support while baby sleeps. It can also allow for added protection from sun and wind and provide privacy while breastfeeding.
Each carrier sports thickly cushioned shoulder straps and a contouring hip belt, all of which are adjustable to allow for a customized fit. “Perfect Fit Adjusters” on the front of the shoulder straps can be cinched down for smaller wearers, or extended for those who are taller. Duraflex buckles keep parent and child secure and are tough enough to stand up to daily use. Soft padding has been thoughtfully incorporated into the leg-openings of the seat to ensure superior comfort for baby. The hip belt has extra webbing to fit any waistline, and it also includes a roomy front pocket to stash essentials. The entire carrier weighs in at only 2 pounds, making it incredibly easy and convenient to grab for a day out and about.
Hand made from 100% cotton canvas, Tula carriers are extremely durable and easy to care for. The fabric is machine washable, making clean up as easy as a toss into the washer. The designs are offered in a countless array of colors and patterns that will fit any personality, making them both fun and fashionable.
All Tula products are hand-made and come with a one year warranty. The carriers meet and even exceed industry safety standards, and Tula is a member of the Baby Carrier Industry Alliance.
Tula baby carriers provide parents with durable, comfortable and stylish options for carrying little ones. Available in gorgeous prints and created for unrivaled versatility, Tula carriers set the standard for maximum comfort and convenience for parents on the go.
Ergobaby Four Position 360 Baby Carrier
The four-position Ergo 360 is one of the most versatile baby carriers on the market. It can be used to carry your child from infancy through toddlerhood, making it easier for parents to move around and get things done while still holding their babies. The Ergo 360 has a belt that secures the carrier around your hips. You settle the child into the carrier, pull up the backpack-style straps, and secure the straps with a clip. It’s easy to put on and simple to take off.
One of the most useful features of this carrier is that it can hold an infant or toddler in a variety of positions. While the baby weighs 7 to 12 pounds, the Ergo can be used with a soft infant insert. The insert positions the child higher in the carrier and prevents the baby from slipping out the gaps in the side. When the little one is in the infant insert, he or she sits facing inward at the wearer’s chest.
As the baby grows, the infant insert can be removed, and the little one can sit in the structured bucket seat. This provides the proper position for your baby, maintaining the baby’s knees higher than the rear end. Some kids prefer to face outward. The leg area of the Ergo 360 can be unsnapped, providing a narrower seat and allowing the child to sit with his or her back to the wearer. In this position, the seat still holds the knees up, maintaining the proper hip position.
The front-outward carry position is not recommended for babies younger than 5 months, however. In addition, babies should only be worn in this position for up to 15 minutes at a time. In the forward-facing position, infants are unable to turn away from the constant sensory stimulation that is presented to them. Turning the child to the front-inward carry can help prevent your baby from being overstimulated.
With the Ergo 360, children can also be carried on the wearer’s hip and back. Hip and back carries are recommended for kids 6 months and older.
The Ergo 360 maximizes comfort for both the little one and the wearer. The carrier has a mesh lining that allows airflow between the child and the carrier. This prevents your baby from getting too hot, especially in the summer. The Ergo 360 also has padded straps and a supportive waistband that distributes the infant’s weight, making it a comfortable option for holding your baby for an extended period of time.
Infantino Fusion Baby Carrier
The Infantino Fusion flexible position baby carrier looks like a backpack but functions in a variety of positions to hold your baby safely and securely. The supportive waist belt can be worn low on the hips or around the natural waist to provide maximum comfort. Smaller babies can be elevated when the waist strap is positioned higher on the wearer. As your child grows, you can lower the waist belt. The waist belt helps distribute the child’s weight more evenly compared with carriers that only provide shoulder straps. The Infantino’s shoulder straps are padded and comfortable and help to support the child’s weight.
The seat also converts to adapt to a growing child. A small infant can be worn facing in with a narrow seat position, and an older kid can be worn facing in, facing out or on the wearer’s back.
Children from 8 to 32 pounds can be worn comfortably in the Infantino Fusion baby carrier. When your infant is young and can’t walk or move around, you can strap him or her into the carrier and go on long walks, shop at the grocery store or get things done around the house. As toddlers begin to walk and run, carrying them close to your body can keep them safe in busy parking lots. Wearing them in the Infantino Fusion can give them a chance to rest on long outings. When they want to be picked up, it only takes a few seconds to secure them in the carrier.
This carrier is easy to adjust when you’re transferring the baby from mom to dad or as your infant grows. The waist strap is adjustable, and the shoulder straps can be loosened quickly. Infants and toddlers are comfortable when carried in the Infantino Fusion. The padding around the carrier is soft and plush, and the headrest supports babies’ necks, especially when they are sleeping.
The Infantino comes in a neutral gray-and-black color that matches all of your outfits. It stashes away easily in any diaper bag and can be used almost everywhere.