When it comes to baby gear, we're all about the less is more philosophy—but we absolutely cannot imagine #momlife without our baby carrier.
Why? Because the best baby carriers are incredibly useful in the newborn days and well beyond. Have a colicky baby who just won't settle? Pop her in the carrier and hold her super close. Overtired little one needs a nap but refuses to sleep, and all you can do is think about the 22 things that need doing around the house? Strap him to you and get it done, mama. Don't feel like pushing a bulky stroller but still want to take baby along on your latest family adventure? Babywearing FTW yet again. 🙌
From wraps and slings to more structured carriers, there are a lot of baby carriers options on the market, and we know it can feel a little overwhelming to figure out which one is right for you.
For the purpose of this story, we did a deep dive into the soft, structured carriers (aka SSCs), which offer a great comfort and convenience. Probably the most popular babywearing option among parents today, SSCs can be used in lots of different carry positions, have adjustable, padded straps, and can often be used from infancy well into toddlerhood.
Lots of brands have how-to videos that show you exactly how to properly fit the carrier, how to take baby in and out, and more; they're a lifesaver and we can't stress enough just how helpful they can be. And, speaking of fit, be sure you're practicing healthy hip positioning whenever you're wearing your baby; the International Hip Dysplasia Institute can show you how.
Now that you know the basics, it's time to figure out which carrier is right for you. We've tested them all so you don't have to—and below are what we believe to be the six best baby carriers. Happy traveling, mamas!
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This article was originally published in July 2019. It has been updated.