Which Carrier is Better in Warmer Weather?
The most frequent question we receive at this time of the year is which carrier to purchase for warm weather wearing. This is a very subjective question because everyone has different preferences, tastes and tolerances. Kind of like clothes – what one person may wear in the warmer weather may be totally different what another person chooses to wear right down to colours, weight, length, cut and fibre.
Open side carriers such as the Didymos Meh-Dai, DidyGo Onbuhimo and DidyKlick are great options for warm weather wearing as the air is constantly flowing through the open sides. However, slinging and wrapping are also great options for babywearing in the heat!
In our years of experience, we have seen and heard from wearers all over the world and we think there may be a few general rules of thumb that wearers apply to warm weather wrapping!
- Generally speaking, most wearers may prefer a lighter weight fabric to wrap with. DIDYMOS wraps with a weight of 180 g/m² – 230 g/m² seem to be the most popular as the fabric feels lighter on the body and there is less bulk to contend with.
*Geekery Note: When comparing carriers of different fibre blends and weight, note that linen and hemp will weigh heavier than cotton. Therefore, a 100% cotton wrap and a linen or hemp blend wrap of the same weight may actually be thicker or thinner in hand depending on the fibre!
- Air flow circulation and breathability of the fabric can make a big difference when temperatures are high. A weave that is not too dense but that is woven with more of an open weave allows air to circulate easier and wearers will often feel cooler. Primas, Adas and Waves are fantastic examples of weaves that are more open versus dense weaves. These are particularly cooling as woven wraps and ring sling carriers.
- Carriers such as the Didymos Meh-Dai, DidyGo and the DidyKlick have great air circulation because the carrier is an open sided carrier and baby is not enveloped in fabric on all sides. These carriers tend to be great warm weather carriers because there is a constant air flow through the sides of the carrier.
- All Didymos wraps can be worn all year long, regardless of season. However, we do find that linen shines in the warmer weather and for good reason! Linen as a fibre has fabulous temperature and moisture regulating properties and is one of the most popular fibres for babywearing in warmer climates and for wearers who tend to hold heat within their bodies/have a tendency to perspire. Linen fabric is smooth and cool to the touch. Its coolness and ability to absorb up to 20% of its weight in moisture without feeling damp, makes it an ideal fibre for warmer weather wrapping and slinging. Our DIDYMOS 100% Organic Cotton wraps are lovely, breathable options as well!
Some (but not all) great recommendations for fabric weaves and carrier types are…
Are You Dressed for the Warm Weather?
What the wearer and worn child are wearing makes a difference! In warmer weather, try to stay cooler by dressing baby minimally and yourself in light, comfortable clothes.
All of the above suggestions can play a role in selecting a wrap. However, listen to your own tastes and preferences. For example, we personally love wool all year round! Wool helps regulate body temperature and wicks moisture (ie. sweat) away, which will help everyone feel cooler and more comfortable.
Most importantly, always remember to provide sun protection for both yourself and your baby.
General Babywearing Safety Guidelines for Outdoor Activities
During the warmer seasons, people often ask what activities can they do while babywearing. Depending on the carry and the age of the baby, babywearing can be hands-free however, hands-free does not necessarily mean that one can still do all of the activities that they would normally do when not babywearing. Generally, we like to recommend activities that would be done with baby in arms. It is important to evaluate any dangers or risks involved, and use good judgement. For example, would you operate a lawn-mower or dangerous yard tool with baby in my arms? No! Therefore, it is not advisable to operate yard equipment while babywearing. Would you participate in a salsa class on the beach with baby in my arms? Perhaps not however, a baby held in a carrier would make this a feasible activity and it would be an enjoyable time for the both so why not give it a try!
Common Activities People Do While Babywearing
- Hiking and walking
- Playing at the park
- Splash pads
- Shopping & browsing Farmers’ Markets
- Gentle to moderate exercise classes
- Gardening (with no dangerous tools)
Common Activities People Should *NOT* Do While Babywearing Outdoors
- Bike riding
- Horseback riding
- Climbing and hanging upside-down on playground equipment
- Intense exercise classes and inverted positions
- Operating yard equipment
Enjoy the warmer season! Happy babywearing!