Top Pick for
Overall baby carrier
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For this list, we picked baby carriers based on key product features and actual customer reviews and ratings on Amazon. For every category, we carefully chose parameters based on our research and determined products with the highest review score within those parameters.
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For the best overall baby carrier, we picked the Ergobaby Omni 360, which has a rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars on Amazon.
The Ergobaby Omni 360 is suitable to use from birth and adapts as your baby grows. It has easy-to-use sliders that allow you to adjust the baby to face in or out. Apart from a large removable storage pouch, it comes with a UPF baby hood for sun protection and privacy for breastfeeding. It also offers padded lumbar back support and shoulder straps that can be used as regular or crossed straps.
Customers gave positive feedback on the carrier's lightweight fabric, durable construction and versatility. While it's on the expensive side, it's worth it for users. It offers superb back support and can be worn high or low, perfect if you've had a C-section. It also has an adjustable ergonomic bucket seat that the International Hip Dysplasia Institute (IHDI) acknowledged as hip-healthy. Several customers found the straps tricky to use at first, but this seems to be a minor issue.
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We recommend Boppy's ComfyChic hybrid baby carrier as the best front-facing baby carrier. It has a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon.
This is the perfect mix of a wrap and pre-assembled carrier. It offers 4 carrying positions, including hip carry and front face-in. It is machine washable and comes with a storage pouch for portability. A snuggle screen panel acts as a shade or nursing cover. The hybrid carrier can support a baby weighing up to 15.8kg as well.
Boppy's baby carrier offers the durability and versatility of more expensive models. It has the lightweight feel and breathability of a wrap and the multi-function of strap-in carriers. Users said you don't need an infant insert with this, while others found that the straps are comfortable and well-padded. The carrier is easily adjustable as well.
However, it doesn't offer tons of back support. Set-up is also a bit time-consuming according to some reviews.
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Our pick for this category is the KeaBabies baby wrap carrier. On Amazon, it has a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars.
KeaBabies' baby wrap carrier is made of specially designed stretchy fabric that the brand promises to carry your baby's weight without straining your back or shoulders after extended periods. It measures 514.86x12.7x54.86cm and can fit up to a 15.8kg baby. Apart from being machine washable, this wrap can be used as a postpartum belt, swaddle blanket or nursing cover.
Thousands of buyers were impressed by the carrier's thick material, ease of use and value for money. It is quite stretchy, offering enough security to keep your baby safe and snug without constant readjustment. Users also found the fabric smooth and lightweight.
However, they added that it's not the most breathable wrap out there. This may be a con if you sweat easily or planning to use the carrier for summer.
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With a rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars on Amazon, the Manduca sling is our pick as the best sling baby carrier.
The Manduca sling is made of 100% GOTS-certified organic fabric, offering breathable comfort for you and your baby. It is suitable for securing a baby in place from 3.5kg to 15kg. It can also be used as a pre-tied sling, a wrap cross-carry or on the hip. It comes in various stylish colours as well.
Customers praised the product's soft fabric, ease of cleaning and comfort. While it's a bit tricky to navigate at first, the carrier provides ample security and support to keep your baby in place without frequent readjustment. Users also said it is easy to clean and doesn't lose its vibrancy after multiple washes. But just like other elastic baby carriers, its fabric eventually gives when used regularly.
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With a rating of 4.8 out of 5 stars from more than 130 Google reviews, the stylish BABYBJÖRN Baby Carrier Harmony has a lot of fans thanks in part to its adjustability. This carrier is suitable for newborns with a minimum weight of 3.2kg and can support babies of up to 3 years or weighing 15kg. It can also be worn in 4 positions: newborn, facing in, facing out and back carrying.
It's designed with a waist belt that relieves pressure on the wearer plus padded shoulder straps and back support. As your baby grows, you can move the waistband down to your hips to help distribute the carrier's weight. Users say it's comfortable whether you're wearing it facing the front or on your back.
To better support your baby, it has adjustable head support and a seat that helps your baby sit in a wide-legged position. The 3D mesh also provides back support for your baby while being breathable enough for Aussie summers.
It's been included on the IHDI's "hip-friendly" list as a carrier that offers the proper support for your baby's hips.
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For hiking, we chose the WIPHA baby backpack carrier as the best option. It has a rating of 4.8 out of 5 stars on Amazon.
WIPHA's carrier is designed with a 5-point safety belt to ensure your baby is safe and secure during outdoor activities. It has a wide padded waist belt for support and a collapsible sunshade for protection. Apart from an insulated pocket, its paddings are removable to fit any needs. It also has pockets on the harness for storing small essentials.
Part of our list of the best hiking backpacks available online, this baby carrier offers tons of features at a reasonable price. Not only will it keep your baby in place during hikes, but you can also use the backpack for storing hiking gear and personal effects. The insulated pocket is particularly helpful for storing milk and other food as well. However, customers said it doesn't have the best lumbar support. This means your baby's entire weight would fall on your back and shoulder.
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We recommend MiaMily's Hipster Plus as the best baby carrier for dads. On Amazon, it has a rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.
MiaMily's Hipster Plus is made of high quality cotton designed to be breathable and supportive for both parent and baby. It is suitable for keeping your baby in place from 3 months to 24kg. Apart from a larger storage pocket under the hip seat, this carrier has a smartphone side pocket. It also offers 6 carry positions, including side carry, front-facing and facing out.
This baby carrier is durable and versatile, featuring an ergonomically designed hip seat to keep the baby's hips in the optimal position. It has a wide waistband that provides full lumbar support, ensuring you are comfortable for extended periods. The waistband is also adjustable up to 59" to fit both parents. One con for buyers is its bulky construction, adding that this isn't the most travel-friendly choice out there.
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For newborns, we selected Ergobaby's Embrace Cozy newborn carrier as the best one. It has a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon.
This newborn carrier from Ergobaby is made of soft knit fabric to help nestle your baby close to you. It has a snug fit and can support from 3.2kg to 11.3kg. It also features an adjustable waist belt and stretchable shoulder straps for added comfort and support. The brand says it easily rolls up for portability as well.
Customers gave positive feedback on the carrier's durable construction, smooth fabric and security. It has a 3-click system that ensures your baby is kept in place while you stroll. Crafted using Oeko-Tex-certified fabric, this carrier is made without harmful chemicals and is safe for human use. The wide straps also ensure the carrier caters to different body types, but some customers found the shoulder straps a bit slippery.
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Bebamour's baby carrier with hip seat is our best pick for toddlers. On Amazon, it has a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars.
This Bebamour carrier is suitable for toddlers up to 20kg, offering 6 carrying positions like a baby backpack, kangaroo and front-facing. The brand says it has a breathable 3D mesh air panel that can be zipped down for ventilation and zipped up for warmth, perfect for all-year use. It also has a clip-in and Velcro waist straps for added support and extra pockets for storing small essentials.
The general sentiment is that this is an affordable and versatile product made of durable fabric. It offers a snug fit that helps keep the baby in place while having extreme back and lumbar support. Customers found it easy to put on and comfy, even during extended periods. The straps and panel are well-padded but breathable as well. It measures 24.89x17.78x29.97cm, which is a bit smaller than your typical baby carrier. This may not fit those with a larger body frame.
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With a rating of 4.2 out of 5 stars on Amazon, the Moby easy wrap carrier is our best pick for summer.
Moby's easy wrap carrier is designed to be slipped on like a t-shirt and has an adjustable buckle at the sides for added security. It also features padded back support and a sash guide for comfort and ease. This can be worn inward-facing or forward-facing to fit any needs. It is suitable for babies from 3.6kg to 14.9kg as well.
A versatile and lightweight carrier, this carrying wrap has an easy 3-step wear system that ensures your baby is safe and kept in place for extended periods. Users said the smooth fabric is soft and breathable, perfect for humid conditions. The padded back panel is also well-ventilated, offering ample support, so your back remains stable and comfortable. But despite being advertised as a 1-size-fits-all product, several users complained that the wrap is too small for their body types.
Ergobaby is this year's best baby carrier brand, beating out the competition for comfort and support, durability and value for money.
Baby carriers can be a helpful alternative to using a pram if you want to keep your baby close to you while you're out and about or doing chores around the home.
There are 5 main types of baby carriers: sling, backpack, front carrier, wrap and Mei Tai.
The most common type of carrier on the market is a front carrier or pouch. They are typically suitable for babies under 18 months old.
The carrier is worn on your chest like a front-facing backpack with straps around your back and shoulders. Your baby faces you so you can keep a watchful eye on them while you move around. Some front carriers allow you to face the baby forwards as they get older so that they can observe their surroundings.
While they can help you feel close with your baby, they can cause back pain as your baby grows bigger.
A backpack carrier is designed for infants and can be used for infants who have started walking but can't do long distances by themselves yet. Your infant sits in a rigid frame on your back with their weight distributed evenly across your back and shoulders. They are able to see what is happening around them.
Backpack carriers can be suitable for those with back pain, although the high position can take some getting used to. However, they don't offer the same intimacy as a front carrier and you won't be able to keep an eye on your infant when they're in the carrier.
Sling carriers are more suitable for young babies. Slings are made mostly from stretchy supportive fabric and worn across your shoulder with baby sitting across your body. This creates a cosy position for your baby and feels intimate and safe.
A pouch sling has a loop of fabric that hugs your body with a pouch for baby to sit in, while a ring sling uses 2 rings to thread material through for more secure carrying.
Slings are not suitable for older babies and don't offer as much support or padding as other carriers.
Wraps are similar to slings in that they work well for younger babies and help you keep your baby as close as possible.
They are often designed with a single piece of material that wraps around both you and baby, and can be worked into different positions. It can be tricky to get the hang of the wrap configurations so you might need help getting into it until you get used to it.
While there are many different materials to choose from, some may cause you to feel overheated, especially in warm weather.
A Mei Tai is a soft-structured carrier that is also known as an Asian style carrier. It has a wrap and tie design and comes with a headrest and contoured shoulder padding. Some models come with a sun hood. They are suitable for babies of all sizes and can be carried on the front or back.
Mei Tais can help those with back and shoulder issues because the weight distribution is adjustable.
While there are many things you'll want to buy before your baby is born, a baby carrier should not be one of them. Wait to see when you want to start using it and how big your baby is to ensure you can pick the right type and size.
Choosing the right carrier for you depends on what feels comfortable for you and your budget. We recommend trying on a few different types of carriers to see what you like best. When you try on carriers, make sure that both you and your baby feel comfortable while walking and that baby is secured with a firm fit.
When comparing carriers, consider the following key features:
Depending on the style, baby carriers usually cost anywhere from $50 to $300. We know raising a baby isn't cheap, so it can be tempting to cut costs with a budget carrier. However, spending a little more can give you the peace of mind that your baby is safe and secure. Some cheaper models also don't offer as much durability as more expensive models.
Some types of carriers, especially slings, come in different sizes, while other styles are one-size-fits-all and adjustable as your baby grows.
Buying a one-size-fits-most carrier means that you'll only need one product as you can adjust it as your baby grows. They are also useful for when your partner or other family members take turns in carrying baby on your outings.
Padding in the right places can help make you and your baby more comfortable. Shoulder padding is particularly useful when wearing the carrier for long periods of time.
It's important to remember that your baby will get heavier the more they grow, so while you may feel comfortable at first, you might need more back support after a few months.
While some carriers suggest that they are suitable for newborns, many doctors recommend waiting until they are old enough to hold their head up by themselves.
Older babies tend to do better in a facing-out position so they can see what is going on around them.
While many carriers are suitable for babies of different weights, make sure to check the restrictions before purchasing. Some models are suitable for babies up to 20kg, while others are only recommended for those 12kg and under.
If you plan to use your baby carrier in hot weather, look for a breathable fabric that helps keep you and your baby cool. Keep in mind, you'll need to wrap them up with an extra layer for the winter months.
If you're worried about chemicals in fabrics affecting your baby's health, look for eco-friendly carriers that use unbleached fabrics with non-toxic dyes.
A quality baby carrier should last one to 2 years. Look for a carrier that is made from durable material with well-made straps or buckles and heavy-duty seams. This will help prevent it from breaking while in use or only lasting a short period of time.
Every parent knows how quickly things get dirty. Choosing a carrier that can easily be thrown into the washing machine can make life a lot easier. Framed carriers are often more difficult to wash due to extra padding and pockets.
If the carrier has straps, make sure they're easily adjustable with one hand. Check that your baby won't be able to adjust the straps or undo any buckles while they're in the carrier.
If you're still nursing, you may want to consider a carrier that is suitable for discreet breastfeeding such as a sling or wrap.
If you suffer from neck or back problems, check if the carrier provides even weight distribution. Look for baby carriers that have wide, well-padded shoulder straps and waist or hip straps to help take the weight off your shoulders.
Some baby carriers come with accessories or add-ons, and some brands give you the option of purchasing these separately. These can include sun shades, a wet weather cover, drool bib or teething pad.
While there is no Australian safety standard for baby carriers, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has published a safety brochure for slings. If you're purchasing an international brand, check for the US standard ASTM F2236 or the European standard EN 13209-2.
It's crucial to follow the manufacturer's instructions on how to use your baby carrier safely. Some types of carriers, especially framed carriers and slings, can cause suffocation, pinching and neck injuries when not used correctly.
Baby carriers are not recommended for any baby that has breathing difficulties or is under the recommended weight for the carrier. If you're unsure, seek advice from your paediatrician.
When you're trying a baby carrier for the first time, ask someone to help you get it on and make sure it is fitted correctly. Each carrier has different instructions on how to use, so refer to the instruction booklet for the correct way to put it on and adjust any straps. Once you get the hang of it, you should be able to take it on and off easily.
Three tips for wearing a carrier:
We update our data regularly, but information can change between updates. Confirm details with the provider you're interested in before making a decision.
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