31 answers

Need Advice on a Good Baby Carrier for Older Babies

we are adopting a baby, and she's already 6 months old and 15 pounds. She probably won't be here until she's around 9 months old- so I need a convertable (wear on back or front) carrier for an older baby, maybe 20+ lbs. Is a sling wrap better, or the traditional carrier? And, what brand is the best? I don't know that I feel secure enough to use the kind that is a long piece of fabric that you knot or slip through rings- especially with a baby that big and active. Thanks for your help!!

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This is another vote for the Ergo. It is so easy to use and comfortable. My 11-month-old son still loves it.

I second the recommendation of the Ergo baby carrier - my daughter never liked the other types and doesn't like the stroller but LOVES the Ergo - it can either be used on the front or back. I still use it and she is 2+ years old...I don't plan on stopping soon either. Good luck and congratulations!

My impression of a sling was the same. I had a nice Bjorn carrier. While I liked it pretty well, I used my sisters extra sling on a visit after my son was 1 and loved it. I also used it to carry my niece around as a infant. If I have more children a sling is what I will get.

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I have the mei tai baby carrier for my daughter and love it. You can wear it on the front, side, or back and it really helps distribute the weight, I know several people who use it with their toddlers, so it lasts a long time. I bought mine off of ebay but there are lots of websites that you can choose from. I also have the baby bjorn, but as they get heavier it puts a lot of pressure on my back.
Hope that helps and good luck with the adoption!

1 mom found this helpful

I made this mei tei (http://www.sleepingbaby.net/jan/Baby/bbo.html) to use with my youngest - he's 6 months and about 16 pounds. I love it - I have a Snugli too, but it hurts my back. Using the MT, he's practically weightless because it distributes the weight so well. I also like it because it is cozier than the Snugli, he can snuggle right up to me when he's on the front. We haven't done a lot of back carries yet because his legs are too short to wrap around me and he's too short to see over me, but it can be done even this little. It was super easy to make and cost me nothing but 2 hours of time because I used material I inherited - I call it my Sound of Music carrier because I made it out of canvas curtains left behind by the previous owner of our house.

Congrats on your adoption! I'm going to copy and paste the same response I gave to a mama recently about babywearing. I would definitely try out a mei-tai (thats a style, not a brand) carrier, they are asian inspired and are really versitile. I have a babyhawk and it is AWESOME! (www.babyhawk.com)

You should join the DFW babywearing group and attend one of their meetings, people bring tons of different carriers (wraps, pouches, asian style carriers, soft structured carriers, etc etc)
The next meeting is December 15 in Richardson (a bit of a drive for you, but would definitely be worth it to get some hands on experience and assistance before spending $$ on a carrier!)

Also, check out www.thebabywearer.com - they have some GREAT forums with tons of information to help you out!

I have a 7 month old who is over 16lbs and i use the "long piece of fabric" and love it. its called an Ellaroo Wrap. my friend is letting me borrow it, so i'm not sure how much they cost. on-line buying is your best bet. you can use the wrap all different kinds of ways and its VERY comfortable. i've done most carrying on my front and hip. i still haven't attempted the back yet...but am sure its easy.
Good Luck!

I loved my Hotsling! Go to Hotslings.com to see what they have to offer and to get your correct size. Then you can usually go to ebay and buy them for much less. I had 2 and both came from ebay. I didnt trust the one with slip rings either. The hotsling is comfortable and easy to wear. Good Luck and Congratulations!

Hi C.,
My 2nd child weighed close to 10 pounds when he was born, so I purchased the "One Step" carrier for larger infants (almost 7 yrs ago) It fits kids up to 40 pounds. I still use it for my other kids. It's lightweight and easy to put on and take off.

We also have an Evenflo backpack for longer trips, my 1 yr old LOVES the backpack!
Happy shopping!

This is another vote for the Ergo. It is so easy to use and comfortable. My 11-month-old son still loves it.

The Mei Tai type for sure!! I have a hotsling and a Baby Hawk mei tai... I loved the hotsling for when both my kids were a bit smaller. But for the bigger baby and then a toodler, the mei tai is the way to go! I just switched to the mei tai with my 7 month old (from the hotsling)...I used it for my first child until she was 3. I love that there are no rings, extra fabric flowing off, or sizing..anyone can wear it...front or back. Check out the website...
Good luck!

My impression of a sling was the same. I had a nice Bjorn carrier. While I liked it pretty well, I used my sisters extra sling on a visit after my son was 1 and loved it. I also used it to carry my niece around as a infant. If I have more children a sling is what I will get.

I use the baby wrap with my second child who is now 3 months. So far it has been wonderful! Way more comfy for her and me than those regular carriers. When I was pregnant I got the wrap and tried it out with my 2 year old on my hip...even though I had a big belly and he was 25lbs, it was still comfortable and surprisingly secure. My suggestion is to get one, mine is an ultimate baby wrap from babies r us, and keep the receipt. Try it out at home for a few hours and take it back if you don't like it...even better, if a friend has a child you can try it with then you'll know what you like before your sweet baby comes home. Best of luck to you!

I second the recommendation of the Ergo baby carrier - my daughter never liked the other types and doesn't like the stroller but LOVES the Ergo - it can either be used on the front or back. I still use it and she is 2+ years old...I don't plan on stopping soon either. Good luck and congratulations!

Ergo, hands down is the best carrier you will find for a baby over 15 lbs or so. Now don't get me wrong, I love my ring sling but for a baby that is big enough to hold up their head and everything the Ergo is great and you can wear it for hours, fits both mom and dad and has a great resale value!

My frined just adopted a baby back in June and she was 6 months old, she bought a Mei Tai and didn't like it, I let her borrow my Ergo and in 2 days she ordered her own!

I suggest you get a new one and then when you are done with it, you can easily sell it on eBay for almost as much as you paid for it.

My little one hated them all. My cousin however swears by the slings

The Ergo carrier is amazing and holds up to toddler size. It is the best thing on the market for your back, too. Go to ergobabycarrier.com I love mine and so does my kiddo.

The maya wrap is a great carrier for older babies. You can use it many different ways. I didn't get mine until my son was over one and I was able to use it with him for quite a while. I would suggest getting it now before you get your baby girl so you will have time to practice with it and get used to using it. It can be awkward to use until you get used to it. But after you have some time to mess with it and figure out the best way for you to wear the wrap it is very comfortable for you to wear. I hope this helps you out. I know I went through alot of different baby carriers until I found this one. My son was a baby that liked to be held alot so I fell in love with this sling!!

I use an ERGO baby carrier and I LOVE it! Easy to adjust once you get the hang of it. You can carry the baby on your front, piggyback, or on your hip. You can carry the baby up to 40 lbs - I saw it in NYC on a woman in the subway carrying her 3 year old on her back.

Front carry is very handy - they can hear your heart, and can even nurse in the carrier. Check out ergobabycarrier.com - click support, then instructions and you can see the video on how it works. They've also updated some features, so it's even better now.

I LOVE my OTSBH (over the shoulder baby holder) - it is one of the long ones with rings, but it has held everything from my 2 day old nursling to my extremely active 40 lb 3 year with ease.

I enjoy the fact that I can use it as a front carrier, for naps, a face out carrier, a hip carrier, or on my back - with ease.

It's seen me through three babies, and performs as well as the day I got it.

The Ergo is one that is becoming more well-known now. I have had one and tried it, but personally, I like the Kozy carrier better. http://www.kozycarrier.homestead.com/ It has a padded body, so I found it was easier and more comfortable to use for front and back carries. My daughter is two and weighs close to 30 lbs and I can still carry her comfortably for hours in this.

A Hapai baby carrier is another one that I would recommend over the Ergo. It has buckles like the Ergo, but the straps can be crossed, and the body has padding and the hood is easier to use. I use this one a ton too, and LOVE it! This one is made by local DFW moms, which is nice to support!!

There is a great DVD called "Tummy to Tummy" that talks about all the different baby carriers (pouches, wraps, ring slings, and mei tais (the Ergo, Kozy and Hapai baby are considered Mei Tais) and also has great tutorials and demonstrations. I know there is a link to it on the Kozy website.

A website I would highly recommend is called www.thebabywearer.com. If you click on the "forums" tab, it will show you lots of different forums for lots of different carriers. It can be overwhelming at first, since there is so much information, but I learned sooooo much from this site and now have been purchasing carriers from moms on this site too! They have a For Sale or Trade section where you can buy new and used carriers for a better price than new from the websites.

Also, there is a babywearing yahoo group, and they meet the third Saturday of every month in Richardson. Moms bring carriers to the meetings so that you can try them out with help before buying one. This way, you can find one that works best for you. (Which is how I found out about the Kozy!) http://groups.yahoo.com/group/DFWbabywearing/

Trust me... there are lots of great carriers out there, and also lots of moms wanting to help others find the joy of babywearing! And trust me, it's so much easier than trying to maneuver a bulky stroller at the mall or the grocery stores!!

Good luck! And feel free to email me if you have any questions!!

The Gerry Back Pack carrier worked great for us with our children at this age/size.
I loved the sling, but it is better for a younger baby.

I think at 9 months she is going to be really heavy for a sling or carrier. I used the baby b borne brand, I know I spelled that wrong, but it was $80. I couldnt used it after my son was 6 months because of the pull it would cause on my lower back and im very atheltic. At 9 months I bought a proper back pack carrier, metal frame. he had great body control, study, straps all over, i love it and still use, it my son is now 20 months old. It distributes his weight to my shoulders and waist and i can shift it when needed. cuz after hiking for an hour, it wears on you, so thats a great factor. I know I will be able to continue to use this for at least another 10lbs = 35lbs max. I found mine at a baby resale store for $60 maybe used once. I know they retail for $180. If u wnat the name of the brand, ill look. Good luck and congrats in ur new life, mommy.

Congrats on you new baby!
My vote is a Baby Hawk Mei Tai carrier! They are great!

Why don't you just by a cheaper stroller and save both your back and her legs???


Hi! I'm not too sure about the traditional carriers, but I can tell you about my experience with a ring sling. I bought it when DS was about 4 months old, and still use it, he's 16 1/2 months old and 25 lbs. I typically use it in hip carry position, and have always found it to be extremely comfortable and VERY secure. An added bonus is that its supposed to be good until about 35 pounds, and can be worn in various positions. I found a good one online that has a padded shoulder area and was relatively inexpensive at www.slingcarrier.com. As for the big and active thing... it helps! I kinda tuck DS's arms in under the sling fabric to keep him out of trouble while I try to get shopping done :)

Congrats on the adoption! I can only see benefits to baby wearing for you guys, holding your new child close to you all snuggled in will surely make her feel safe and secure in her new environment.

Good luck!!!!

I have used my ring sling with my 35 pound 2 year old with no problems, so it can be done. But, there is a learning curve, and some kids don't like them when they don't start out in one.

I would suggest an Ergo backpack. It can be worn in the front and the back. I do not have one myself, but have heard wonderful things about them.

Congratulations on your new baby!

I have the Moby Wrap and absolutely love it. It is a long piece of material that you wrap around your body. It took a while to get used to it, but I love it now! Watch the video that comes with it, and just practice with it a lot. You can wear your baby in the wrap up to 35lbs. I think you have to order it online. I recieved it as a gift. Good luck!

For her age and weight I would suggest a mei-tei. They are very versatile and easy to use with an older child. They enable you to garden, vacuum, cook, anything while the baby is attached to your back. Here's a great website for you to reference...


I used a pouch sling mostly- one with a little bit of stretch in the fabric - from Hotslings or lucky-baby.com. Also had a solarveil taylor made ring sling that I can still use with my 3 and 4 yr olds in the water or in a pinch when they need to be close to Mommy. With all carriers seek support from other babywearing parents in your area. The learning curve can be steep and without perserverence you might give up (like most mom's I know) before learning the true benefit of being hands-free but totally attached to your little one.

I would recommend also investing in an Ergo or Patapum Toddler (my preference) carrier that will be more of a backpack style carrier with front wearing options as well. Awesome investment and will work for husband as well, on hikes, trips to the zoo, mall, etc.

go with the ERGO carrier. It's got the best support for your back and you can wear baby on your hip, back or front. plus it's got a zip pocket for a diaper, keys, phone,etc.... and a sun shade/ head support if she want's to take a snooze.
My husband loves it too

I have an ergo baby carrier, it is kind of pricey $84 but it is a 3 in one. Front carrier, hip carrier and a carrier for the back. you can order it at www.cobaltcarriers.com and they several colors to choose from. When you go on to the web site choose soft carriers and then pick the New Generation ERGO Baby Carrier. Hope you enjoy yours to.

Best of luck with your new baby!1

Hi C.,

I just moved to NYC. I bought the Ergo baby carrier for my son who is 11 months old. He weighs 22 lbs. It is perfect for us. I take him in the subway and can walk comfortably for over an hour wearing him in the Ergo. They also have an Ergo back pack diaper bag that can be attached to the Ergo carrier if you are trying to consolidate. For the cold weather, I just found a peekaru vest to wear over the ergo baby carrier to keep you both warm.


The other baby wearing coat options on the market look a little frumpy. I loved this peekaru fleece vest.

Good luck with your decision.


We used our snugli (which is made for up to 24 lbs) all the way up to 24.5 lbs.
It is a good way to have the baby close to you and your hubby won't feel to girly wearing either.

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