Shopping for a Good Baby Carrier

Updated on July 15, 2007
S.S. asks from Sacramento, CA
32 answers

I am about to have baby #2 and was told that a "must have" is a front carrier for the new baby. Since there are SOOO many choices out there I was looking for some advice. I an trying to spend no more than $50.00. I know Baby Bjorn is supposed to be the best but they are pretty pricey. Please help.... Thank you

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M.P.

answers from Sacramento on

I used to think that the bjorn was great until I learned that there are so many more COMFORTABLE & LONG TERM options out there. I was only able to use the Bjorn comfortably until my eldest daughter was about 15lbs. My youngest is now 20lbs and I still carrier her regularly in my Mei Tai's and Ring Slings.

My eyes were opened to a vast selection of baby carriers at thebabywearer.com

I have several carriers now that are so comfortable.

I use a Maya Ring Sling for short trips with my daughter and a Babyhawk, Freehand and Sachi Mei Tai carrier for longer trips.

thebabywearer.com has a great For Sale or Trade forum where you can get carriers for a less than retail.

You may spend more for an Ergo or Mei Tai than a Bjorn but you will use be able to use the Ergo or Mei Tai for so much longer than the Bjorn. I know of several people that use their Ergo well into toddlerhood. My 4 year old sometimes wants to be carried in my Mei Tai and it holds up just fine.

Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful
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C.M.

answers from Salinas on

I have the Ergo and love it but I didn't get it until my baby was around 9 months. It apparently has a newborn insert but I'm thinking you might find a wrap or sling the best fit for a newborn. The Ergo is definitely a great carrier though with three positions (front, back, and side carry) and it's super easy to use and my husband is okay with wearing it as well. I would have loved to learn how to use a wrap or sling, but i didn't want to buy one unless i had someone to show me how to use it properly. i also bought an angelpack carrier (mei tei) style and while I did like it, it was very time consuming to do all the ties and if I didn't get it right, I'd have to try again because I couldn't walk around with a loose tie!

Good luck!

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S.K.

answers from Las Vegas on

I started with a sling, then had a Snugli, then an original Baby Bjorn, and now a Baby Bjorn with the lumbar support. I LOVE the lumbar support. With my growing girl, it's the only way to go!

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T.

answers from Las Vegas on

S.,

I have a Baby Bjorn and don't like it all that much. It works okay with a newborn but once they hit about 15 pounds, it kills my back and neck. And, yes, they are pricey. I've also heard that they are bad for the baby's spine because they put all of the weight on the baby's crotch instead of putting the baby in a more natural carrying position.

I also have an Ergo (also expensive). I thought it would be so cool. It is big and bulk and hot and not all that comfortable. I've been messing with it hoping I'll get used to it but so far, I'm not impressed.

I had a sling but my first son hated it and was constantly trying to slip out the bottom (I got it when he was close to a year old and by the time I had my second son, I can't find it - I think it got Goodwill-ed).

I would love to try one of the hip carriers but I'm getting tired of pitching out money on carriers I hate. None of them are cheap.

Oh, and I have a frame backpack too. My dh can use it but it is way too heavy for me. It is for babies who can sit up and by that time, the weight and angle makes it really uncomfortable.

I'll be curious to see the other responses.

:-)T.

1 mom found this helpful
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T.F.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hotslings!! I absolutely loved my hotsling for my newbaby. They can sleep laying down and it is healthier for them and very comfortable. Check out www.hotslings.com or they have them at Target now, too. But those will run you 40+ on their website.

The best place to get hotslings and other carriers for half price (because they were returns)is http://store.attachedtobaby.com/

Another great website to check out all different carriers is www.peppermint.com

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M.G.

answers from Los Angeles on

I have 2 baby bjorn. I loved them and didn't pay more than $40 for a brand new one and $20 for a slightly used one. They did not hurt my back at all. That was what got me hooked. Ebay is were I got my brand new one and Childrens Orchiard (second hand childrens store) is were I got my slightly used one. You can get on a waiting list for a baby bjorn at childrens orchard. It is worth hunting down at a cheaper price. You won't be sorry you hunted.....I sure was not...

Good luck,
M.

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M.B.

answers from Austin on

Hi S. :)

I've tried almost every carrier out there and Ellaroo is my favorite hands down. I have major back problems and they are non-existant with this one. It puts most of the weight on your hips and a bit of it on one shoulder. The only thing wrong is if you wear for over 4-5 hours, your shoulder starts to get a bit sore. lol
It runs about 80.00 but you can find used ones on ebay, craigslist, etc. ;)

Best of luck!
M.

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A.H.

answers from Modesto on

S.,
I am on baby #2 and am using a baby sling. I can NOT reccommend these enough. I can use it by myself (no one needs to help me get strapped in) and the kids LOVE them. I used a different brand last time but got the one I am using now from SlingLings.com.
Check out their website. The price is definitely in your range. The website also shows how to use it at different ages.
When I use the sling in public, I get tons of inquiries and compliments on it. In fact, a trip to the grocery store probably yields 10 stops by other moms (at a minimum!)

Good luck!
A.

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D.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi,
Baby Bjorn is the best. I have 2 of them. I found one at a Salvation Army Store and paid $1.99 and the other I purchsed on eBay, and I think it was around $12.00 because of shipping. If I were you, I would try eBay or start looking at thrift stores. It is amazing what people just give away. I use mine in my daycare, and they are great!

Good Luck

D.

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A.K.

answers from Los Angeles on

Have you tried looking at the Childrens Orchard stores, they always have anything baby, that your looking for, slightly used but almost new. Thier stuff is always half price or less then what you will find it at a store. Im not sure what area your in but you can find it online Childrens Orchard. Good Luck!
A.

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S.B.

answers from San Francisco on

IMO Baby Bjorn is no good at all. The straps aren't very wide and an dig into your shoulders.
My favorites are a pouch style sling, and a wrap.
The pouch slings are more pricey, but last FOREVER! And there are so many different positions they can be in. Here is a great site with pouch slings... www.Kangarookorner.com I just ordered the fleece pouch, and I LOVE it. :) http://www.kangarookorner.com/p-26-adjustable-fleece-pouc...
I made my own wrap by getting 4 yards of a t-shirt style fabric and cutting it in half, then sewing them together to make one long piece. It cost me only 20 bucks.
There are wrap instructions on this site... www.Mobywrap.com

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V.N.

answers from Sacramento on

Get a used Baby Bjorn from Craigslist. Just put a wanted ad in if you don't see one.

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A.R.

answers from Los Angeles on

The Bjorn is meant for a newborn because it pushes their hips out and doesn't offer much support. I believe the directions state not to use on a newborn. As a mom of two myself I found the Moby wrap worked best. I used a sling for 1 1/2 yrs with my first and found it comfortable and easy to nurse her in. The Moby allows you to have both hands free to attend to another child. It can be overwhelming to try but after a few tries it becomes second nature. I would put the wrap on before leaving the house and then when I got to where I was going all I had to do was put my son in. The Moby places the baby close to you and mimicks the womb allowing them to sleep endlessly and feel secure. I'm not sure where you live but I know of a few people and places in Orange County that sell Moby's and will show you how to wrap it on. Whatever you decide I hope you don't use the Bjorn.

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S.H.

answers from Bakersfield on

Hi S.,
I used the EvenFlo Snugli Comfort Vent Carrier, it's perfect for the price tag, we used it with our baby daughter since she was 1 month old. You could it until they're around 6-7 months, after that you will need a back carrier since they become more mobile and heavier.
Hope this helps!

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F.V.

answers from San Diego on

i do like baby slings because you can carry your baby in many positions, very comfortable if you are breast fedding and kruzing kids has one that will go from new born to 2 years for under 50 dolars. kruzin kids is a small buss run by a mom in san diego but see if you can find her web page.
F.

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A.C.

answers from Sacramento on

I don't care much for my baby bjorn (my son hates it, hard to get him in and out) but both I and my 3 month old son love my Jeep carrier, its so soft, the shoulder padding allows me to wear it for hours without aches and it is so easy to get him in and out. Go to Babies-r-Us and try on on yourself! =)

You can get them here:

http://www.toysrus.com/product/index.jsp?productId=226610...

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K.H.

answers from Los Angeles on

S.,

I used a Moby wrap when my daughter was a newborn which was great at the time, however, it is not a simple "put on and go" wrap. AND as she got older I wasn't able to put her in it by myself. If you google moby wrap I'm sure you can see what I'm talking about.... So I don't recommend it.... Good Luck!

K.

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K.F.

answers from Los Angeles on

Unfortunately, Baby Bjorn is the best and most comfortable. It's worth the extra $$ if you can manage it. They also have a nice mesh one that is best for summer as it breaths better! But if money is an issue, the Eddie Bauer one in Target will hold up well too, it's just a bit bulky! Try EBay for a used Baby Bjorn! Good luck.

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D.S.

answers from San Francisco on

I have an ergo and i LOVE it. I've been using it since my baby was about 6 months old or so (she just turned 1) and wished I had had it from the start. These days I usually use it so that she's on my back, it's very comfortable.

I know you only wanted to spend about $50 and the ergo is about $100 new, but maybe you could find a used one on ebay. It would be better to spend a little more on a better one than waste $50 on one you end up not liking. (I've done that too!!)

Check out the website www.thebabywearer.com it has tons of reviews on quite a few different carriers. There's a bunch of different ones out there, you aren't limited to what's available at Babies R Us or Target. :)

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P.S.

answers from San Diego on

I can vouch that the Bjorn is worth every penny. I barely used it with #1, but with #2 it was a saviour. My baby has gotten too big for ours (she's almost 10mos, but won't ride it anymore). If you are interested, I'd be willing to sell ours to you. You can contact me via my email and I can give you details.

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N.O.

answers from San Francisco on

Hi S.,

Congrats!! You have gotten A LOT of ideas....I JUST went through this with my 4 month old last week. I had an OLD front carrier that I used with my older 2 kids, but never really liked..Now, that I have 3 kids, it makes it SO easier to have the baby in a pack instead of in the stroller or the cart in her car seat!

First, I went to Babies R Us and tried the Baby Bjorn's and the other brands. The MAIN reason I do NOT like the carrier I have is that you have to "drop" the baby into carrier...and it is hard to do by myself or take her out. The Baby Bjorn opens up and you can place the baby against your body and then put the carrier around the baby and clip it shut. It makes it REALLY easy to lay the baby down when they are asleep, because you can open the carrier with the clips instead of having to pull the baby up and out of the carrier.

Second, after goign to Babies R Us, I decided I REALLY liked the Baby Bjorn Active Sport model instead of the original classic model. There is additional back support in the Active model and my husband who had back surgery at 21 and is a Physical Therapist, prefers the additional back support. The only problem is that it is more expensive, it retails for $120.

Next, I found the one I wanted Baby Bjorn Active Sport model, and knew it cost about $120...so, I came home looked on craigslist.com and there were about 4-5 listings for THAT model ranging from $40-75...so, I contacted all of them, found out which was the best condition and settled on one that was $50...I thought that was pretty good!!

So, good luck in your search and with the new baby!!

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T.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

I used s Snugli and the baby can face you or face the direction you are walking. It is wonderful. I know longer use it, so if you want it (I still have the box). It's in good condition. You can have it for $10. Email me: [email protected]____.com

I live in Moreno Valley.

Tammy

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J.D.

answers from Reno on

S., Congrats on the upoming birth of your baby! What an exciting time for you and your family. :)

With my 2nd child, I LOVED having my hands free to take care of my older child and a front carrier came in quite handy.

Don't forget, you can always check out places like Ebay, Overstock.com for bjorns, or there are now many knock offs that do the same thing, just without the bjorn name like Snuggly.

You also might want to check out slings, which are similiar, but are more snuggly and comforting for the baby. These are becoming quite popular in recent days, because they aren't just 'hanging ' there.

Have fun looking and big hugs to the soon to be big brother!!

~J.

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B.S.

answers from San Diego on

I have a Snuggli. And it was only about $20- so the quality might not be as great but it works and I love it!

good luck

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L.E.

answers from Honolulu on

I absolutely LOVE my Moby Wrap!!! You can wrap baby up so close to you and both of my daughters loved it!!! It takes awhile to wrap it up at first, but once you catch on it is great! I have the baby bjorn, but the wrap is so much more comfy (and less pricey) than the bjorn. The Ultimate Baby Wrap is the same thing too. Oh, and if you are breastfeeding, you can do that in the wrap too. Take care.

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C.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

S.,

I ended up getting a cloth sling. It works great and can be used from birth until the baby is 35 lbs. You can wear it in front, on your hip, and on your back. When you baby is little you can carry him in a cradle type of position. I had mine made with fabric that I picked out and it cost $40, but the girl that made mine usually only charges $25. If you want to check her collection go to www.myspace.com/paisleypieces

Congratulations on the soon arrival of your baby boy!

Peace & Blessings,
C.

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K.M.

answers from Sacramento on

If you are looking for a good back support carrier it has to be the ergo baby carrier - hands down. I own the active bjorn with back support and it is way better than the regular bjorn but the ergo carrier is great on your back and it is much more light weight - good for packing away in a suitcase or just throwing it in your diaper bag (my sister owns one and I am definitely getting one ASAP - I like it way better than the bjorn). It carries all the weight in your hips rather than your shoulders and lower back. It also converts to a backpack for toddler years! This is a pricey carrier but worth the money! You might be able to find it at Once Upon a Child or any second hand childresn's/ baby store. Here is the website to read more about it:
www.ergobabycarriers.com
Good luck & congrats!
-K.

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A.G.

answers from Las Vegas on

Get the Ergo! The Bjorn is not that comfortable and many professionals recommend not carrying a baby like that when they are suspended by their crotch. I've had a Snugli and a Hip Hammock too and they were horribly uncomfortable after a very short amount of time.

The Ergo is very similar to a Bjorn but the baby is in a sitting position and can also be used with newborns like a sling. The straps are padded and super comfy. Its also a hip and back carrier.. but doesnt have the hassle of a long sling/fabric to try and figure out

They are a bit pricey but you can use it for a loooooong time and its very versatile. If you buy one from http://www.myfavoritebabycarrier.com/ergo.html they offer a 90 day money back trial.. so try it for a couple months with your baby and if you or the baby dont like it you can send it back with no issues! A great deal!

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J.N.

answers from San Francisco on

I loved the Moby wrap for my newborn, hands down the most comfortable! The advantage of a wrap over a Baby Bjorn or other similar carriers is that babies don't hang by their crutch. They're also more comfortable for the person carrying, since your baby isn't dangling in front of you, which puts pressure on the back.
When you're baby gets heavier, you might find the Moby wrap less comfortable. Then you can get a mei tai or an Ergo (or Patapum, or Beco. The ergo is pricey at 92$ but the most comfortable carrier, both for parent and baby.
For more info on carriers, you can go to thebabywearer.com.
J.

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M.S.

answers from San Francisco on

You know I think people automatically think that because it is expensive, it MUST be the best one! I absolutely hated the baby bjorn carrier. I tried 3 different ones, and none of them seemed very comfortable for me and my husband to both wear. One would work for him, another would work for me. The Kolcraft Jeep 2-in-1 carrier was comfortable for both of us to wear and for our daughter. She is 9 months now, and still LOVES being close to daddy for trips to the grocery store, Costco, or the Monterey Bay Aquarium. And it's $39.99.

http://www.amazon.com/Kolcraft-Jeep-Carrier-Red-Black/dp/...

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I.I.

answers from San Francisco on

I couldn't find anything comfortable for my baby until I came across this site:
http://www.mamatoto.org/Default.aspx?tabid=36
You can get lots of info about different types of carriers and how to make your own (may be a good idea if you are on a budget). I like a wrap a lot (the ultimate wrap, moby, etc), it can be used with the newborns. My son also liked to be in a pouch type carrier which I made from a scarf just by tying the knot - he would sleep there for hours and it was a quick get in solution when wrapping was not practical. When my boy was around 7 mo, we got an ergo because his favorite scarf became a bit small for him and I needed something to put on and get him in easily. Ergo is great and IMHO its price can be justified by the 4 years you can use it with one child.

Warmly,

I.

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R.K.

answers from San Francisco on

I do love my Baby Bjorn...I actually bought a brand new one for my sisterinlaw off ebay for $60 which included shipping, etc. I'd check out prices on there before buying something different!

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