Best Baby Carriers for Dad
For decades, the American Academy of Pediatrics has recommended babywearing, the centuries-old practice of holding a child in a carrier worn by a caregiver. Babywearing has countless benefits. It reduces crying, supports bonding, and promotes the baby’s ability to regulate their own physiological processes in response to their caregiver. Plus, having a hands-free way to carry your baby around allows you to get a lot more accomplished.
The best baby carriers for dad are comfortable, easy to adjust, and safe for his baby. Different carriers offer different holds, usually front-facing and/or with the baby carried in the back. Comfort for both dad and baby is critical, so choose a carrier that’s simple to adjust and able to grow with your child.
What to Look for in a Baby Carrier for Dad
When selecting the best baby carriers for dad, there are a few guidelines you’ll want to keep in mind:
- Safety. It probably goes without saying, but your baby’s safety is paramount. Always choose products that meet or exceed Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) standards.
- Dad’s comfort. Even if it’s the safest carrier on the planet for your baby, if dad curls up in pain afterward, he likely won’t be wearing baby again. Make sure straps are padded and large enough to accommodate the big guy.
- Ease of use. Most carriers are meant for multiple adjustments as your baby grows. In addition, the best ones are simple to take on and off (without the help of another adult).
- Durability. Carriers should be made of strong fabric that can easily withstand normal wear and tear.
- Value. Does it come with accessories? Will you be able to use it until your baby is much older? Is it within your budget?
Safety Considerations When Shopping for Baby Carriers
To keep both dad and baby safe and comfortable when wearing a carrier, make sure to follow these guidelines:
- When wearing your baby, do frequent checks to make sure their nose and mouth are not blocked by your body or by fabric and that their airflow is unobstructed. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, infants younger than four months of age are at the greatest risk for suffocation, especially those worn in a sling-style carrier.
- Purchase a carrier made from sturdy material that supports your infant’s back. Be sure the leg holes are small enough that they can't accidentally slip through.
- Examine your carrier regularly for rips and tears in the seams and fasteners.
- Backpack-style carriers should have padding on the aluminum frame. This helps protect your baby if they bump against it. An adjustable canopy or sunshade is a great added bonus to provide your little one with sun protection.
- Remember that your center of gravity changes when you’re using a baby carrier. If you need to pick something up while wearing your baby, bend at the knees, not the waist. Otherwise, you risk injury to both yourself and your child.
- Continue to use restraining straps on older babies. After five months of age, babies may become more active in the carrier and more difficult to safely manage. Make certain your baby is secure before you begin walking.
- Avoid using a backpack or other upright positioning device if your baby has respiratory issues or was born prematurely. The design of such devices may place these babies in a position that makes it harder for them to breathe.
- Different carriers work best depending on the age and weight of your child, so always read the manufacturer's instructions to make sure you’re using them correctly.
When choosing the best baby carriers for dad, opt for one that’s both safe, comfortable, and simple to adjust. If it feels like a straight jacket and requires help from other adults to get dad and baby situated, he won’t want to use it. Take a look at some of our favorites when it comes to the best baby carriers for dads.
Best Baby Carrier for Big Dads: ErgoBaby Omni 360 Carrier
The best baby carrier should give dad everything he and his baby need - security, comfort, connection, and freedom - and he can have it all with this all-in-one baby carrier. The ErgoBaby Omni 360 Carrier has both adjustable, crossable shoulder and belt straps, as well as padded lumbar support. That means dad will get the perfect fit, maximum comfort, and the support needed to relieve unnecessary pressure on his shoulders and back. This baby carrier also comes with a baby privacy hood for sun and wind protection, as well as a detachable pouch for handy holding of pacifiers, keys, a phone, and other small items. It can also be used from newborn to toddler, which means he’ll get plenty of use from it.
Best Baby Carrier for Fashion-Conscious Dads: CYBEX YEMA TIE Leather-Look Baby Carrier
While baby carriers really aren’t a fashion statement for most parents, the CYBEX YEMA TIE Leather-Look Baby Carrier is actually quite stylish. The leather-look has a more masculine feel for dad, but there is a range of other colors and patterns available as well.
This carrier doesn’t just look great – it’s super comfortable for the baby! It features ergonomic seating, an adjustable panel width, and head and neck support. Dad will enjoy it, too. It has a soft, padded waist belt that won’t dig into his stomach and padded shoulder straps that can be crossed for additional support. It’s super easy to put on and take off and can be used in three different carrying positions, up to two years of age.
Best All-Around Baby Carrier for Dads: DIONO Carus Complete 4-in-1 Carrying System With Detachable Backpack Features
This ingenious unisex carrier has a detachable pod for baby and a smart waterproof backpack, both of which can be positioned on the front or back of the harness. This design ensures dad always has optimal back support no matter what mode the carrier is in. It’s also acknowledged as a hip-healthy baby carrier by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute, with adjustable leg support to grow with the baby.
The DIONO Carus Complete is made from Oeko-Tex® approved and certified textile fabric and features a “close to me” touch pocket at the front to allow dad to comfort his baby. This carrier is designed to carry children from birth up to 33 pounds, with adjustable leg support to grow with the baby. They’ve even included an infant insert for babies weighing 7 to 10 pounds. The Diono Carus Complete is the ultimate baby carrier engineered for all dad and baby’s adventures, wherever life takes them.
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