Guide to carrying in all weathers.
So, a very common question I hear is, what do baby and myself wear when using the sling? Especially if its very cold or very hot.
Hopefully this guide will help to clear things up for you, I will cover carrying in the heat, cold, wet and general clothing for boring weather!
Carrying in the Heat
When the weather is warm , we worry that baby will overheat. This can be easily prevented if you follow these simple tips.
The sling is a layer of clothing. If you have a thick stretchy wrap it may count as two to three!
Use loose, breathable cotton clothing on your child
You can use a muslin between you to stop the skin on skin stickiness, a damp muslin can be cooling
Remember that you will get warm too - don't wear too much under the sling
Protect the extremities - long cool trousers, wide brimmed sunhat, draped muslin over legs/arms or an umbrella
Hip and back carries are cooler, if your child is old enough
Thinner, cooler slings are available if needed ( see below)
Use a one layer carry with woven wraps or try a ring sling
If using sunscreen, leave at least 30 mins before using the sling as it can stain
Stay in the shade where possible
Check your child often - feel their back - and if they're too hot, take them out and have a break
Both of you stay hydrated. Baby may want to feed more often, formula fed babies may need small amounts of water (none needed for breastfed babies under 6m)
Lastly - its ok to not carry if its very hot! you can use the pram. ( just DO NOT cover it with anything)
Some options for cooler slings below, all can be hired from me, some I can retail. Pop me a message if you're interested in trying one.
Melliapis muslin ring slings. £40-£42
Kahubaby sunshine carrier. from £99.95
Integra solar carrier. from £85 (in pic below)
linen or cotton woven wraps
Calin Bleu stretchy wrap. from £29
Imzi breeze carrier £80
Carrying in the Cold
It is very common for people to overdress babies and children when carrying in the cold, but it is not like them being in the pram. They are sharing your body heat so don't need as many layers. Here's my tips:
Thinner layers on you and your child. These can then be removed/added as needed
NO padded snow suits, especially on newborns*
Protect the extremities - socks/leg warmers/booties/hats
Keep babies airways/face clear of fabric (no loose scarves/cowl neck jumpers etc)
The sling counts as a layer of clothing, plus they're sharing your body heat!
Using a babywearing coat, oversized jumper/coat that zips around you both or a blanket tucked around the sling is a great way to keep warm
You can buy babwearing/sling covers if you wish
Check on baby - feel their back - if they're too warm remove something, if they're too chilly you can add something
Take care when walking on slippery/icy ground, snow grips for your shoes may be a useful investment
Here's some great options for carrying in the cold, I retail the socks & leg warmers.
Babywearing socks. £12
Leg Warmers from £8
Sling cover £39.99 (other brands are available)
H&M kids neck collar - brilliant for keeping little necks warm
Snow grips for shoes
Now there isn't one prescriptive answer because each child is different. *For example, a small newborn in a snowsuit can be dangerous because they can slump inside it or overheat. Whereas a toddler who is up and down a lot, in the middle of winter may be fine in one as they don't have the same airway risks.
Fleecy suits are a good alternative as they're not too thick but are a nice cosy layer on your child.
It will depend on the temperature, and how long you're outside for.
Everything always depends! Check your baby/child and remove/add layers as needed.
In non extremes of weather (spring/autumn) the leg warmers or socks are great as an extra layer. Add a hat and cardigan if needed. It may be colder in the mornings and evenings, so things that can be easily removed as the day warms up are great.
Carrying in the rain can feel like a momentous task, but with these few simple tips, you'll be dry in no time.
Umbrella - you have hands free to hold one! (I have fabulous a double umbrella - pic below)
The pac-a-mac hack (using a toddler rain coat attached to the sling)
Larger rain coat that zips around you both
Babywearing rain jackets or sling covers
If you have a stretchy or woven wrap - use a pre tied carry so its not dragging in puddles whilst tying
Pop baby in the sling whilst in the car or use the boot as a shelter
If you have any questions about carrying in any weather, please get in touch. I'm happy to help guide you.
Consultant at South Essex Slings