Being based in Australia, one of the most common questions being asked is which baby carriers are best to use in the warmer weather. Whether you’re preparing to wear during summer, live in a hot climate year round, or yourself or your baby overheat easily, these ideas will certainly be useful.
I’m going to start by being completely honest – wearing your baby is likely to feel warm in warmer conditions, even with some of these cooler suggestions. The fact is, you’re still going to have two warm bodies against eachother so not all of the heat can be avoided.
The good news is that many people find that babywearing tends to feel cooler than carrying their children in their arms; you don’t tend to get that feeling of their skin getting stuck against yours as you carry them in your bare arms and feel like you’re peeling them off of you when you put them down, and it also tends to use up less of your energy (which – let’s face it – can quickly decline when we’re out in the heat).
Which style of carrier is best for warmer weather? Ring slings, mei tai’s, woven wraps or buckle carriers?
If you have a preference for a particular style of carrier (ring sling, mei tai, woven wrap, or buckle/structured carrier), there are cooler options within each of these types so if you have a preferred type you can stick to that if you want to. Some people like to stick to their preferred carrier type and get a cooler option, whereas others see it as an opportunity to try a different style. It can be really useful to have a couple of different styles available to you, as they each have different benefits.
The important thing to consider with structured carriers is the fabric, as many of them are far bulkier and thicker than others. Try to look for something with thin fabric along the main panel (all of the carriers we stock here meet this requirement). Hint: most bricks and mortar baby retail stores sell thick/bulky carriers. Be cautious of some of the carriers that claim to be made specifically for summer – some of them are designed to fold away really small and as a result they don’t have thick enough shoulder straps to ensure comfort for carrying for long periods. You’ll be able to tell whether they have thick straps by looking at the photos.
Our most popular structured carrier for the heat currently is the Tula Carrier (Tula Free to Grow, Tula Standard, or Toddler Tula depending on your child’s age). The fabric is lovely and thin, and the carrier itself takes seconds to put on. Tula also have some prints available in a mesh option, called ‘Coast’ which has a mesh panel and can remain a bit cooler in Summer.
If you’re not sure which Tula is right for you, please refer to the following article: Tula Free to Grow vs. Standard Tula
Mei Tai’s/Meh Dai
Mei Tai’s (or Meh Dai – same carrier, different name) made from woven wraps (often referred to as wrap conversion Mei Tai’s) are supportive, breathable, and thin, making them perfect for babywearing in the warmer weather. The Fidella Fly Tai is wonderful because it doesn’t require an infant insert and adjusts as your baby grows.
Woven wraps are woven especially to carry babies comfortably. This means that you can tie it in a way so that all you need is one layer of fabric across the baby, whereas with some ‘stretchy’ wraps made from jersey fabric you’ll require 3 layers of fabric across the baby which can be quite warm. As lovely as stretchy wraps are for newborns, many people prefer to skip them all together and go straight for a woven wrap as they are cooler, carry for longer periods, and are more versatile – you can carry on your front, back and hip in a variety of ways using a woven wrap. If you do have your heart set on a cooler stretchy wrap, then I suggest the Hana Baby Wrap due to its bamboo content which makes it cooler
Any 100% cotton wrap is fine for babywearing so choose based on which one you love the best! Anything with hemp or linen is also cool for Summer.
Little Frog woven wraps are our favourite
Ring slings as an option are generally very cool as there is just one layer of fabric across the baby, and very little fabric wrapped around you. I suggest 100% cotton for younger babies, and a linen blend for older babies (Little Frog or Girasol)
Extra tips for baby wearing in the heat
Back carry if comfortable (and only if your baby is ready) – it ends up being a little cooler
Ensure baby and wearer are lightly dressed
Stay hydrated – both of you!
A piece of cloth can come in handy if your baby falls asleep – it can work as a barrier to stop getting sweaty if you put it between each of you
Hopefully these tips will help you to wear your baby even when it’s hot.
Do more of what you love, with the people you love.
Any questions? Feel free to contact our Certified Baby Carrier Consultant