Keeping your baby close is one of the most wonderful gifts of motherhood, but carrying around a little personal heater sure isn’t! Our in-house babywearing consultants put together some tips to make babywearing this time of year as comfortable as possible!
1. “Can I even carry my baby in this heat?”
Babies have been worn in hot climates for centuries and indeed our bodies are well equipped to thermoregulate appropriately. So, don’t worry, you won’t overheat your baby by carrying him safely!
Baby carriers often offer more ventilation than strollers! Temperatures under stroller hoods or sun covers can rise very quickly, trap hot air and carbon dioxide due to the reduced air circulation, which can be dangerous for infants that are unable to express their discomfort. If you will be using a stroller, always make sure the seat isn’t too hot from the sun and provide as much fresh air as possible (especially in newborn bassinets!) Wearing your baby makes it easy for you to monitor their temperature and breathing, read their clues, enable frequent breastfeeding to ensure they stay hydrated and help them thermoregulate.
2. The clothing dilemma
Even when we’re not carrying babies, we like to wear (and dress our babies in) light and airy clothes, preferably made of natural fibers like cotton, linen or bamboo which allow for most breathability. Aim to have a layer of fabric between yourself and your baby to help make things feel less sticky.
Some parents like to keep a thin piece of muslin between them and their baby to absorb any sweat. This can easily be swapped out when it gets sweaty! If you’re using our Boba X, Boba 4Gs or Boba Air it’s especially simple - just reach between you and your baby from the side and replace the cloth - voila, instant comfort! Keep in mind that whatever carrier you are using acts as a layer! In the case of our Boba Wrap, it’s multiple layers, so you can easily keep your baby in a nappy only!
3. Don’t forget about sun protection
Stay in the shade whenever possible or try to schedule outdoor activities in the coolest part of the day - before or after the sun is at its peak!
However, that’s not always possible, so if there is no shade available, make your own - we love wide-brimmed hats (some can offer shade for the baby as well) or even parasols!
Be mindful of exposed little chubby legs and heads - use baby safe sunscreen or leg covers with UV protection on the exposed parts! Boba X, 4Gs and Air also have a practical hood that can offer sun protection for your babies head when they’re sleeping - it can trap hot air when completely closed, so be mindful that your baby’s airways are always visible and exposed.
4. Keep yourself and your baby well hydrated!
The better hydrated you are, the more you will sweat and as sticky as that may sound, sweating helps to lower our bodies temperatures by evaporating moisture. By wearing your baby you can actually help them cool down as adults are better able to thermoregulate than small children! Exclusively breastfed babies get all their fluid requirements by frequent feeding so you may notice an increased need to breastfeed in warm weather.
Did you know breastmilk is so magical, it adapts to the outside temperatures by becoming more watery to provide enough hydration for your baby? As babies will want to breastfeed more often, feeding in a carrier is a very valuable skill to have (to keep the hydration source available at all times). We have a little tutorial blog post ready for each of our carriers!
In case that doesn’t seem comfortable enough, just take a little break, sit down in the shade and let your baby quench their thirst.
5. Choosing your summer carrier
All of our wraps feature moisture-wicking loops on the inside and bamboo viscose wraps are generally more breathable, so we offer a lighter weight Serenity wrap which will feel cooler than the thicker classic Boba Wrap version!
Keep in mind that stretchy wraps are the warmest option because of the three layers going over yourself and your baby, so it might not be the best choice for hotter weather. A lot of fabric means more support but a bit less airflow.
As our Boba wraps are the ideal option for newborns and very small infants, many parents choose to still wrap their babies in the comfort of their homes or air-conditioned indoor settings and use a more breathable soft structured carrier like the Boba X for outdoor adventures.
The Boba X, Boba 4Gs and Boba Air will be very airy, because of the open sides and since the Boba X features an adjustable seat and panel it’s also a great all-around option for smaller babies.
If you have an older baby that fits the carrier comfortably, the Boba Air is THE carrier to adventure with! As it’s super light and packable it can be a great backup option if you’re generally using a stroller, it’s practical to throw in your bag if you’re biking with your baby in a bike seat or carriage and since it features an ultralight nylon fabric it’s the perfect beach carrier - easy to keep clean and dries super fast!
If your baby is older, try a back carry since if feels significantly cooler. Haven’t tried it yet? Now is the time to check out some of our instructional videos and give it a shot!
Know that you don’t have to give up the closeness in the summer heat - there are many tricks to make it enjoyable for both you and your baby. Take it easy, enjoy some breaks to cool down, be mindful of your comfort and your baby’s cues and you should be good to go!