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Old 06-23-2012, 06:49 PM   #1
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Babywear-newbie with zillion questions and overwhelmed...

Hi all

Now that I studied cloth diapering and finally have made sense out of it, as well as have my dipe stash ready for my son (to be born in 5 weeks), I've started reading about babywearing and carriers...and feel so lost and overwhelmed by all the information! So many brands and names for different carriers, which is best and which is not so good... phew! .

The things I DO know are that the baby should be facing you (if in the front), as well as that the legs should be in frog position. I got a Baby Bjorn a long time ago from Craigslist as I thought it'd be good but learnt it makes baby's legs hang straight. Ok, I will get rid of it. I also found an Infantino carrier at Goodwill for less than 3 bucks...I looked at it and there's 1 row of snaps in the bottom (where baby's crotch/butt would be) and unsnapped the legs would definitely hang straight. Snapping the snaps makes it look a bit different, not sure if it would work or not...(what comes to legs not hanging straight).

I also know there are structured carriers, slings and woven wraps. But... not sure of all the brands! I've heard good stuff about Ergo, Boba and Beco, as well as Girasol. Now I'm reading there are different types in each brand, newer and older models...confuses me more, lol!. I know that I may want something "convenient", not sure if I wanna deal with woven wraps. Hubby will babywear as well, so I think something "easier" than a woven wrap may be the best option (I know there are tons of people who love woven wraps though!). Also I don't know about ring slings, as I'm 6,1" tall and have scoliosis and generally "not-so-great" back--I think a carrier that distributes the weight evenly would be the best. Hubby is 6,4", also has some back issues from a rough landing when jumping out of a plane...

Our local organic baby store has lots of carriers, including Boba, Beco, Ergo and Girasol (the one that looks like a structured carried but is tied...is it Mysol??)

So...what would you recommend? To summarize, I'd love something "convenient", ergonomic and also something that fits from birth to preferably toddlerhood (I'm willing to get a new one at some point but don't wanna buy something lasting only for a few months).

I got really interested in the Girasol structured one (Mysol?), it looks pretty and has no buckles etc. but still is easy to put on, with shoulder pads etc. What are Mei Tais, Hawk-somethings (), something-Tans, sleepy wraps, different models of Becos...? So many questions, sorry!! I may remember the names all wrong...haha. Thanks for reading the long post and BIG thanks if someone sees all the trouble educating a babywearing idiot!

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Old 06-23-2012, 08:19 PM   #2
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I am too new at baby wearing to offer any good advise, but I love my Babyhawk Mei Tai. It is quick to put on (much quicker than my Moby) and my dd has been comfy in it since 6 weeks. Until around 3 1/2 months, I kept her legs froggied. At around 3 1/2 months, I started letting her legs stay out. At 5 months she is comfy as can be in there. She'll even fall asleep in it now while I am outside with the dog.
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Old 06-23-2012, 08:39 PM   #3
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Re: Babywear-newbie with zillion questions and overwhelmed...

The MySol is a mei tai. 4 straps (2 waist, 2 shoulder) and a rectangle body in the middle. That's probably your best bet as far as ease of use, in particular when switching between you and the hubs. Being a 2 shoulder carry it will distribute the baby's weight better than a ring sling, and not having a structured waist makes it easier to roll up to fit teeny babies and unroll for bigger kiddos. I've never tried that brand, but being made from a wrap it should be nice and supportive and still breathable for warm weather.

Does the store have weighted dolls to try the carriers out? If not, try finding a local babywearing group so you can test it out.

PS- Don't worry about keeping their legs froggied. Some babies HATE it (mine for instance). As long as they are supported from knee to knee with their butt slightly lower than their knees (M position) they are good.
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Old 06-23-2012, 09:45 PM   #4
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Re: Babywear-newbie with zillion questions and overwhelmed...

Thanks for the replies. I did a few hours of internet research (instead just being lazy and whining for replies here) and found a lot of good feedback about Boba 3G carrier. It's supposed to go from newborn to 45lbs and has a longer lenght than other carriers. I suspect our DS will be tall as I'm 6,1" and hubs is 6,4" (plus both of us have brothers 6,6" tall!)

The other one I was leaning towards is Beco Butterfly, due to the fabric that holds the baby in the carrier (some people may find it a nuisance since there's fabric between you and the baby and I guess nursing is a bit harder...?)

Hubs just said he'd prefer a SSC (ha! I know some abbreviations now) instead of a woven wrap so SSC it'll be then.

Any Boba owners there...do you think my hubby is too tall for Boba 3G? It says "fits comfortably up to 6,3"...I wonder if one inch is a dealbreaker. Are other SSC's somehow better for people 6,4" tall?

Phew...I feel "slightly" more educated now...I will go and read more about the BabyHawk and MySol mentioned!
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Old 06-24-2012, 12:59 AM   #5
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I used a Moby wrap for the first 2 months and absouletley loved it, but was ready for something a little easier to put on. So i bought an Ergo, best money ever spent!!!
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Old 06-24-2012, 02:03 AM   #6
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I really loved my moby and so did ds til about 4 months. Then we got an ergo and we love it. It evenly distributes weight and puts weight on your waist. If you want to use ergo from birth there is an insert but I'm not sure how well that works. I've heard of a lot of people not liking it
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Old 06-24-2012, 06:03 AM   #7
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Re: Babywear-newbie with zillion questions and overwhelmed...

I have been searching for a MySol in the US for like a year Am I a stinky looker?
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Old 06-24-2012, 10:31 AM   #8
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Re: Babywear-newbie with zillion questions and overwhelmed...

IMO SSCs are a pain to switch between 2 people because of all the adjusting that has to be done. You also have to be careful if you're at the top or bottom of the size ranges because you may not be able to get a good fit. Your best bet is to try them on either through a babywearing group or rental program.
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Old 06-24-2012, 11:29 AM   #9
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Re: Babywear-newbie with zillion questions and overwhelmed...

Thanks again all for replies! I *think* the store has weighted dolls to try with, but I'm not sure. I will check on it. We will definitely try them out, as I don't want to get something that doesn't fit hubby or vice versa.
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Old 06-24-2012, 02:49 PM   #10
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Re: Babywear-newbie with zillion questions and overwhelmed...

I would recommend going to the organic baby store after your baby is born. Then you can try carriers on and see which one is comfortable on while wearing a baby. Cuz you really can't tell if you don't have a baby in it. Plus, the people in the store can probably help you with adjusting it and getting it on. When new to carriers they just look like a bunch of straps. I rented several when my son was born and it took me forever to figure each one out because I had to look up the instructions on each different site before I put it on, then make sure I understood it and give it a dry run, and then try it with my son. Whew! I also got rid of my baby bjorn after reading the info about carriers. And I tried 5 others before deciding on the Beco Butterfly II.

Here's why I picked it
:
It's comfortable to wear. It's east to put on. It's made in the USA and tested up to the weight limit. It comes with a removable infant insert and napping hood. It's easy to adjust while wearing it and easy to take the baby in and out of without sitting down or worrying that the baby is going to fall. This is one of the few carriers that has a piece of fabric between you and the baby. Some people like and and some don't. I like it because I can put the carrier on and put the baby into the carrier easily without worrying about the baby falling. I also think I get less hot and so does he because there is that layer where our hot bodies don't sit right against each other creating body heat and both of us sweating. I have also discovered that if he has a diaper breech I don't end up with it on my clothing - which is a blessing if we are in public. the ONE thing I don't love about the Butterfly II is that the shoulder straps could stand to be a little longer. The padding doesn't come all the way under your arms, so the strap can sometimes rub and become uncomfortable. This has really only happened a few times, and usually when I have been carrying DS for a long time. This carrier also has a great waistband for support that is comfortable. It also has a tie on the inside so you can roll up and tie your carrier when not in use or to easily carry it (also keeps it cleaner and less likely to get tangled or damaged).

Comparing the Beco Butterfly II to the original Butterfly (they don't sell this one anymore, but you could still find it used):
The original had an infant insert that was sewn in, so after your baby outgrows it there's an extra piece of fabric between you and baby. It does not come with the sleeping hood. The straps adjust in the back, which is harder. However, I've heard that some of the Butterfly II's also adjsut in the back, but mine adjusts in the front. The II also has elastic bands at the ends of the straps so that you can roll any extra strap up and put the elastic band around it so you don't have straps hanging all over the place.


Comparing the Butterfly II to the Ergo:
Main differences: Ergo does not have the "butterfly" piece of fabric between you and the baby. Ergo's padded straps are longer, so the straps are less likely to cut into you. Ergo has a pounch on the front, which is handy for keeping wallet or keys (which, honestly, it's hard to get to them if they are in your pocket when wearing the Butterfly). In my opinion, from trying them both, the straps on the Ergo make the front opening narrower and the straps or back of the carrier rubbed on my baby's face. I also felt like he had very limited mobility in the Ergo as compared to the Butterfly II. I just preferred the positioning in the Butterfly II much better. Also, the Ergo's waistband is wider in the front, which I did not like. Obviously, this is just how it worked for me. Some people really like and feel comfortable with the Ergo.

Comparing the Butterfly II with the Beco Gemini:
The Gemini does not have the "butterfly" panel between you and baby. The Gemini's fabric is thicker (more padded?) than the Butterfly. Some people have said that it is hotter to wear in the summer. The Gemini also gives you the option to wear the baby facing forward if you want (and some babies after a while will fight about being in a carrier unless they can see where they are going). The Gemini has a more padded headrest that can fold down. What I liked about that is that I felt it gave good support for a new baby, but I thought it just added bulk for an older baby. to wear forward, the carrier has snaps where the legs go, and you fold it in for forward facing. What's also nice about that is that some babies don't like the froggy position, but may still be too small to comfortably be legs out on some carriers. The Gemini with the panel folded in was actually a great option for a young baby not froggied. DS was very comfortable in that position. (FYI - when in that position, the Gemini reminded me somewhat of the Baby Bjorn appearance-wise). I can't remember specifics about the shoulder straps (like if they are padded down further or wider, etc) No sleeping hood. No pocket like the Ergo.

Wraps:
Provide you with a custom fit basically. However, I tried the Moby - and I just couldn't get it. I tried it several times and it was just too time consuming and difficult for me to get the hang of. I'm sure it becomes easier once you've done it a few times, and they certainly sound comfortable. Some people love the wraps.

Slings: My son HATED slings. He did NOT want to be so tightly bound. He also did not like swaddling. Every time I tried him in a ring sling (and I had 2 friends who used them who helped me with positioning), he would push and cry and cry. He was less than 8 weeks old when I tried the sling. I did like it and it was comfortable, but it has to work for both of you!

Olives & Applesauce
:
This carrier is similar in design to the Butterfly II (I think it's one of the only other carriers that has the panel between you and baby). I did not care for it's shape and it was less comfortable than the Beco. Also, the infant insert is TINY. My son was 6 weeks when I tried it and it didn't even come up to his chest. I felt like he was going to fall right out of it, and so, what was the point of it. I don't remember specific differences, but I just know it was less comfortable and I felt the Beco was easier to adjust.

I've heard good things about the Boba, but have not tried one. The description on their site sounds great, though. I'd like to see one myself!

Couple things to keep in mind:
Be careful where you buy. there are a lot of fakes out there - especially of the Ergo and Butterfly II - and especially on Ebay. People do sell them used, but I think I would contact Beco before buying a used one to see if they can identify whether it's theirs or not. The fake ones may not be made of high quality fabric that will endure the higher weights and could possibly rip out and/or straps or buckles break.

Check the weight for the carriers. Some don't start until 15 lbs. Some have higher weight limits. Some carriers allow you front carry, back carry. Some hip carry. Some front facing out. Check the specifications of each you are considering. Also, someone who sells carriers can suggest carriers based on your build. Hope this helps some. Good luck!
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