There are many types of baby carriers, from buckles to slings to long pieces of cloth. However, a large number people find their way to babywearing through a carrier that attaches with buckles—maybe a Bjorn, Ergo, Tula or Beco. As current or expectant parents are leaning more and more heavily on recommendations from family and friends when buying baby products, one of the most common questions we hear as babywearing educators (or as babywearing parents!) is
“Which brand is best? What should I choose?”
I wish there was an easy answer to that question.
The short answer is that they’re all awesome and have similar functions.
So if all the carriers are basically equal, how do you know which one to pick? You need to try the carriers on. Think of it like jeans or shoes: just because it’s the right size or a brand you’ve liked in the past, doesn’t mean that it will fit comfortably on your body. Buckle carriers, more than any other type of baby carrier, have the widest range of comfort across different bodies. Can you pick based on looks? Sure. Will that be the most comfortable option? Maybe, maybe not. Is form or function your priority? Since they’re all safe, that’s something only you can know.
I prefer to recommend carriers that hold babies in a spread-squat position (also known as the M shape), so that they are sitting in the carrier instead of having their legs dangle down. Why? It will help the wearer be more comfortable with a better centre of gravity, so your back will hurt less if you’re wearing it for a long trip.
If you ask ten parents which carrier is their favourite, you’ll probably get ten different answers. And realistically, if you just pick any carrier off the shelf, chances are you’ll love it and be comfortable. But, to choose the BEST, I hope you’ll consider attending a meeting by your local babywearing group or visiting a knowledgeable store with a selection of carriers to try on options and see what YOU like best.