14 Best Baby Carriers of 2021
Best Baby Carriers of 2021
July 22, 2021
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Best Baby Carriers of 2021

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Best Baby Carriers of 2021.
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This is by far the baby product parents say they love the most. Best Baby Carriers of 2021

No matter how cozy a swing or bouncy seat is, most babies like being cradled in your arms best. But toting your little one around all day isn’t really feasible unless you have arms of steel and an army of helpers to do your daily tasks. That’s where a baby carrier comes in handy.

In this article:

Do You Need a Carrier?

Getting a carrier isn’t a necessity—you could use a stroller when you’re out and about and a bouncy seat or swing at home. But a carrier is the only gadget that lets you do your own thing, hands-free, while your little one relaxes against you.

Many parents say it’s their favorite baby product, no matter the type or brand. It gives your arms a break and can easily sub in for a stroller, especially if your child gets upset when they can’t see you, or you need to navigate crowded spaces like airports and stadiums. It’s also great to use if you like hiking and want to bring your child along.

Some parents only use a baby carrier when their child is small—newborn through six months or so. Other parents continue to use a carrier well into the toddler stage. You’ll get the most out of it before your little one learns to walk and wants to roam free.

What are the Types of Carriers?

Most parents swear that baby carriers are a lifesaver, so you really can’t go wrong adding one to your registry. Baby carriers come in four basic styles:

Wraps: A super-long piece of stretchy fabric you configure and tie around your body, usually over your shoulders and around your midsection, to create a carrier. Wraps mimic the feel of the womb and are especially loved by newborns. Most come in one-size-fits-all and easily adjust to different body types, but can take a bit of practice to get the hang of.

Slings: A wide piece of fabric that goes over one shoulder and across your torso. Slings create a pouch for your baby to sit in and are generally simple to use. They’re also good for hotter climates as they are generally fairly lightweight. Slings don’t distribute weight evenly, however, so they may not be comfortable for long-term wear.

Hybrids: Hybrid carriers are combination carriers that provide the best of two different types of carriers: a wrap and a soft structured carrier. Parents like hybrids because they are generally very easy to use and comfortable to wear, however, it can sometimes be tricky to find the right fit on every body type.

Structured Carriers: Also called Soft Structured Carriers or SSCs, structured carriers are worn like a backpack with straps over the shoulder and a padded carrying “pack” that can be placed on your chest or back. SSCs are usually designed with older babies in mind but many can now be worn with younger babies, too. They offer lots of support and carry options (front, back, hip, etc.) and many can be used well through toddlerhood.

Carriers for Newborns vs. Carriers for Toddlers

Newborns: These carriers are ready for your little one as soon as they are born, without the use of an extra infant insert. However, your baby will most likely outgrow these picks sometime between 12 and 15 months old, so think about how long you plan on carrying baby when deciding on these.

Toddlers: Others carriers will work with your child from birth through the toddler stage. These often allow you to carry baby in many versatile positions. To be used with newborns, however, these carriers usually require an infant insert.

Choosing one depends on what you think will work best for your family.

And keep in mind that there is a bit of a learning curve with baby carriers, especially depending on which style of carrier you choose. Try not to get discouraged if you can’t figure things out on the first try (or two, or three). Get familiar with the world of babywearing, utilize your carrier brand’s video tutorials and practice, practice, practice—it will pay off!

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Wraps and Ring Slings

Best Wrap for Newborns

The Scoop
  • Great for the first few months (and beyond)
  • Perennial parent favorite
  • Lightweight, super soft sustainable fabric
  • Universal fit
What Our Experts Think

Over and over again we hear parents swooning over their Solly wrap—and we couldn’t agree more. The Solly is a wrap you’ll reach for again and again thanks to its super soft, lightweight fabric, ease of use and comfort factor, especially during those first few months of your baby’s life. It’s made in the USA from sustainably sourced material from Austrian Beechwood trees and uses environmentally friendly dyes for its (many) beautiful colors and patterns. It’s easy to fold up compactly in its self-encolosing pocket to store in your stroller or diaper bag.

What’s Worth Considering

The Solly only offers one carry position—front-inward. And although it works with babies up to 25 pounds, many parents like to use it while their baby is still young and then move onto a carrier with more positioning options as their little one grows.

What Babylist Parents Say

“Lightweight, washable, easy to learn, cute, packable…everything about this is great! I bought a second one even. It’s really not complicated, don’t be intimidated!” -Diana

Additional Specs
Weight limit Newborn to 25 lbs
Available positions for baby Front-inward

Best Ring Sling

The Scoop
  • Simple and stylish
  • Hand-sewn from heirloom-quality linen fabric
  • Fully adjustable
What Our Experts Think

Ring slings are a popular choice for many babywearing parents because they’re adjustable, fit most body types are pretty easy to get the hang of and wear comfortably. Wildbird slings are some of the best (and most beautiful) around. They’re made from premium Belgian linen that gets softer and softer after each wash and are made using low-impact, all-natural environmentally friendly dyes. This exclusive Babylixt x Wildbird collab sling can be worn four ways and comes in two lengths: standard (74 inches) and long (90 inches) for plus-size wearers or parents over 6’ tall.

What’s Worth Considering

There is a bit of a learning curve with ring slings. Wildbird has a great collection of video tutorials that will help you get the hang of wearing your baby in no time.

And if you like the idea of a linen ring sling but want to spend a bit less, check out the Kyte Baby. It’s made from pre-washed linen, rose gold rings and two pockets and will cost you about $60.

What Babylist Parents Say

“It is beautiful, my baby loves it. Easy to care for and clean. The community built around it is also amazing and supportive.” -Bethany

Additional Specs
Weight limit Newborn to 35 lbs
Available positions for baby Front, hip or back

Babylist Parent Favorite

The Scoop
  • Bestselling wrap in Babylist Shop
  • Good price point
  • Snug fit helps baby feel secure
What Our Experts Think

The Boba wrap is a popular pick among Babylist users. It’s made from one large piece of fabric and can be used in one position: front-inward. Because it’s made from 5% spandex, it does a great job of helping babies feel snug and secure. (This is especially great for newborns who love skin-to-skin.) We love that it fits parents of all sizes and can grow with your little one up to about 35 pounds.

What’s Worth Considering

One-piece wraps can get hot, so keep that in mind if you’re planning on wearing one in a warmer climate. And like lots of other wraps, this one takes a little getting used to; this video tutorial can help.

What Babylist Parents Say

“This wrap is great! Our baby loves it and settles down to people-watch while being held against me. She gets the safety of me being nearby and the tightness of a warm swaddle. Watch a video and read the instructions on how to tie it before tying it. There’s a bit of a learning curve but it’s a great product once you’ve figured it out.” -Lyssa

Additional Specs
Weight limit Newborn to 35 lbs
Available positions for baby Front-inward

Easiest to Use Wrap

The Scoop
  • Easy to get on and off
  • Soft, stretchy fabric
  • Sized for wearer
What Our Experts Think

There’s no getting around the learning curve that comes with most baby wraps. We love the Baby K’Tan because it has all the benefits of a wrap without requiring you to actually do any of the wrapping. (Win!) Made of a 100% natural cotton with a bit of stretch, the double-loop design evenly distributes weight across your shoulders and back in any of the carrying positions. Better yet, there isn’t an overwhelming amount of fabric to figure out—it goes on like a T-shirt in three easy steps. The included sash adds extra support and does double duty as a carrier storage bag.

What’s Worth Considering

The K’Tan comes in sizes ranging from 0-24, so you can find a good fit for your body. But the downside is that you can’t share it with a caregiver that isn’t your size. Some parents say the fabric gets a little too stretchy (but goes back to normal after it’s washed), so you may want to go down a size to ensure a snug fit.

What Babylist Parents Say

“Baby K’Tan is super easy to use and the baby feels snug and comfortable. It’s convenient to use even with a newborn with the ‘Kangaroo’ position. Even now that my daughter is getting heavier I feel that the support is great and there is minimal strain on my back.” -Mirena

Additional Specs
Weight limit Newborn to 35 lbs
Available positions for baby Front-inward, front-outward, hip carry

Best Luxury Ring Sling

The Scoop
  • Handcrafted in small batches by local artisans
  • Available in several different fabrics (including silk!)
  • Soft and luxurious
What Our Experts Think

Sakura Bloom ring slings are just as beautiful as they are functional. Made in California and crafted in small batches, these slings come in a variety of fabrics including bamboo, linen and even ultra-luxe silk. They work from the newborn days through the toddler years and are easy to store in your bag or stroller when you’re on the go with your little one.

What’s Worth Considering

Sakura Bloom has a whole section of their website dedicated to tutorials, packed with both tips for wearing your wrap as well as care and washing.

Additional Specs
Weight limit 7-35 lbs
Available positions for baby Front-inward, hip carry

Ready to Add a Carrier to Your Registry?

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Hybrid Carriers

Best Hybrid Carrier

The Scoop
  • Wrap + structured carrier hybrid
  • Made from comfy but supportive fabric
  • Not ideal for larger wearers
What Our Experts Think

If you’re struggling with mastering a baby wrap but are still looking for a carrier that provides similar closeness, check out the ComfyFit from Boppy. It’s a hybrid carrier that combines the comfort of a wrap with the ease and support of a more structured carrier and a good option for many parents. The carrier is made from soft, breathable fabric with a touch of spandex and goes on in three simple steps (we promise). There’s a padded waist belt for extra support and wide shoulder straps to help distribute weight. We also like the zippered pocket for stashing away essentials.

What’s Worth Considering

This carrier isn’t ideal if you have a larger body type, as many parents note the shoulder straps can be too tight and restrictive.

And if you like the idea of a hybrid carrier, you’ll also want to check out Boppy’s ComfyHug Hybrid (designed for newborns) and the ComfyChic, a more structured-style hybrid carrier.

What Babylist Parents Say

“Finally someone has figured out how to combine the convenience of a structured carrier with the comfort of a wrap! I wore this for a walk and found it to be a little too bouncy, but I really like it for around the house. I was able to put it on myself which is very convenient and I also really like how baby can face forward with their hips well supported.” -JM

Additional Specs
Weight limit 8-35 lbs
Available positions for baby Front-inward, front-outward

New Twist on an Old Favorite

The Scoop
  • Closeness of wrap + ease of a more structured carrier
  • Fits many sizes
  • Can be used from 8-30 pounds
What Our Experts Think

The Moby Classic Wrap has been a parent favorite and a popular choice among babywearers for years; however, since it’s just one long piece of fabric, it can be tricky to get the hang of and frustrating for some parents. The new Fit solves for this issue.

This t-shirt style hybrid carrier combines the closeness of a wrap with the ease of a more structured carrier. The two sewn-in rings in the back are how you’ll tighten and loosen the carrier so it’s customized to fit any size wearer. The crossed fabric panels in the front of the carrier provide a comfortable, ergonomic seat for your little one, and a sash wraps around your baby for added safety and security. We love how soft the fabric is and how the one-size-fits-all sizing adjusts to fit a large range of wearers.

What’s Worth Considering

Some users complain that the metal rings dig into their back and sides, so if you have the chance to try out this wrap before you commit, you should. You may also want to check the Moby Easy Wrap, another hybrid-style wrap that features side buckles instead of rings.

What Babylist Parents Say

“This carrier is so much easier to use than the original Moby! With my first son, I struggled with the original Moby wrap and eventually just gave up on using it. The Moby Fit is so much easier to use! And our new little guy loves being snuggled up in it!” -Kristen

Additional Specs
Weight limit 8-30 lbs
Available positions for baby Front-inward, front-outward

Soft Structured Carriers

Best Soft Structured Carrier for Newborns

The Scoop
  • Quick and foolproof
  • Geared toward needs of newborns and their parents
  • Inward and outward carry positions
What Our Experts Think

Ease is the name of the game here as the last thing you need to deal with when your newborn is screaming is to fumble around with a complicated carrier. The BabyBjorn Mini is simple, straightforward and brilliant and perfect for parents who want a quick, secure way to carry their baby during the early months. All it takes is a few buckles and you’re on your way. (It’s even simple to get your baby in and out if they’re asleep.) It’s light enough to toss in your diaper bag or store in your stroller basket.

What’s Worth Considering

Larger babies may outgrow the Mini sooner than you’d like. There’s no waistband, which some say leads to back and shoulder strain when wearing it for too long. (Check out the BabyBjorn One for a carrier with a waistband that offers moree carry positions.)

What Babylist Parents Say

“So easy to use. Not a lot of bells and whistles, but it’s easy for first-time parents to figure out.” -Mel

Additional Specs
Weight limit Newborn to 12 months and 24 lbs
Available positions for baby Front-inward, front-outward

Lightweight + Eco-Friendly

The Scoop
  • 30-50% lighter than most SSCs on the market
  • Eco-friendly linen
  • Gorgeous patterns and colors
What Our Experts Think

Just as stylish as they are useful, Happy! carriers are emerging as one of the favorite new(ish) brands in the SSC universe. This carrier’s best feature is its weight—or lack thereof. It’s made from linen and is about 30-50% lighter than other similarly-styled carriers on the market, which makes a big difference if you live in a warmer climate or are someone who easily overheats when you’re babywearing. Other features we love include the easy-to-adjust fit, comfort factor and that they’re handmade in the USA.

What’s Worth Considering

Less bulk and padding is what makes this carrier great, but also what some parents complain about—it can be a little less comfortable for longer babywearing sessions or with heavier babies.

Happy Baby also makes several other (just as beautiful) styles of carriers including the Revolution (forward facing option), a toddler carrier, a stretchy wrap and an Onbuhimo (a Japanese-inspired waistless carrier).

What Babylist Parents Say

“This carrier is so supportive, my hands are free to take care of my other children, and it fits easily inside my diaper bag.” -Kim

Additional Specs
Weight limit Newborn to 45 lbs
Available positions for baby Front-inward, back

Best Lightweight Carrier

The Scoop
  • Lightweight and breathable
  • 4 carry positions
  • Works through toddlerhood
What Our Experts Think

The Omni Breeze has so many great features going for it that it’s hard to choose just one. The first thing you’ll notice is probably the incredibly soft, lightweight fabric that Ergobaby used here. Covered in a special mesh, the Breeze is super breathable and comfortable to wear even when the temperatures start to rise. (Trust us, we tried!) That’s not the case with lots of other SSCs, so it’s a pretty big perk.

Just as amazing are all the carry positions the Breeze offers. Front-inward, front-outward, back and hip carries are all doable with this carrier. It works from the newborn days well through toddlerhood and, like all Ergobaby carriers, is really comfortable for both babies and babywearers thanks to the ergonomic design and tons of adjustment options.

What’s Worth Considering

SSCs can be tricky to get on by yourself, especially in certain carry positions, so keep that in mind.

What Babylist Parents Say

“This carrier is 100x better than the previous one I was using. I love the lumbar support and the cool mesh (especially living in Florida). It was a bit of a learning curve compared to my previous carrier but I cannot recommend this enough! 10/10!” - Julie

Additional Specs
Weight limit 7-45 lbs
Available positions for baby Front-inward, front-outward, hip, back

Most Comfortable Baby Carrier

The Scoop
  • So soft and comfortable
  • 3 carry positions
  • Ergonomic design
What Our Experts Think

Well known (and loved) for their baby carriers, the newest Harmony carrier from Babybjörn does not disappoint. It’s hands-down the softest, most comfortable structured carrier that we’ve tried, made from a unique 3D mesh that’s both breathable yet supportive. And like other Babybjörn carriers, it’s also ergonomic and easy to wear. There are three different carry positions and lots of padding so you can wear your baby for an extended period of time without feeling pressure on your shoulders or back.

What’s Worth Considering

There’s no hip carry option with this carrier. It also has a bit of a lower weight limit than some other SSCs at 40 pounds.

What Babylist Parents Say

“Easy to assemble and fit snugly. The straps adjust quickly to make changes when needed. Carrying my baby is actually quite comfortable with this carrier. When it fits appropriately, all the weight rests on my hips and doesn’t strain my back or shoulders. This is a great carrier that I highly recommend!” -Mimi

Additional Specs
Weight limit 7-40 lbs
Available positions for baby Front-inward, front-outward, back

Best Affordable Baby Carrier

The Scoop
  • Incredibly well-priced
  • Lightweight and breathable
  • Adjustable
What Our Experts Think

You don’t always need to part with a ton of cash for a great baby product. At under $25, the Infantino Flip is a fantastic deal and a fantastic carrier for the price. It fits kids and parents of all sizes thanks to the numerous points where you can adjust straps and buckles. The convertible seat can be narrow for newborns or made wider for bigger kids to keep legs in a hip-healthy position. And, there’s no overheating in this carrier—it’s lightweight and breathable for both you and your little one.

What’s Worth Considering

The only way to get your child into the back-carry position is with someone’s help. Also, some parents find this carrier works better for newborns when you add a rolled up towel or blanket to the bottom of the seat to act as a booster.

What Babylist Parents Say

“Affordable, easy to put on, distributes baby’s weight pretty well, has a removable bib to catch spit up and drool.” -C.B.

Additional Specs
Weight limit 8-35 lbs
Available positions for baby Front-inward, front-outward, back carry

Lots of Fun Prints

The Scoop
  • Can be used from day one through toddler years
  • Three carry positions
  • Fun prints and patterns
What Our Experts Think

Tula carriers come in some of the most fun, modern prints around. They’re versatile, long-lasting SSCs that are easy to use, comfortable for both you and your baby and have three different carry positions. The Explore is lightweight and can be adjusted in several different spots for a personalized fit. It’s made from 100% cotton and is machine washable so you can toss it right in the wash when it starts to get icky. And it’s got a high weight limit—45 pounds—so you’ll be able to babywear well into toddlerhood and beyond.

What’s Worth Considering

Some parents comment that the Explore is tough to get on solo, especially if you’re doing a back carry.

What Babylist Parents Say

“It’s easy to use and comfortable for long stretches. Also very easy to adjust, so my husband and I can swap back and forth with minimal hassle. I hesitated to spend this much on a carrier, but I haven’t been disappointed. Plus, it has a lot of versatility, so I’m hoping it’ll be the only one we ever need.” -Emily

Additional Specs
Weight limit 7-45 lbs
Available positions for baby Front-inward, front-outward, back

Best Baby Carrier for All Seasons

The Scoop
  • Six carry positions
  • Mesh panel for temperature regulation
  • Works from newborn to toddlerhood
What Our Experts Think

This all-seasons, six-position carrier has a unique feature to keep your baby comfortable, no matter the outside temperature. When the back panel is zipped up, the carrier creates a cozy cocoon. Getting hot outside? Unzip it and the inner mesh lining keeps your baby cool by increasing air flow. With a 45-pound weight limit and top-notch lumbar support, this carrier is a great investment that will last well into toddlerhood.

What’s Worth Considering

This carrier has a wider seat than most, which improves weight distribution and really comes in handy (for both of you!) as your kiddo grows. It also has a longer torso, which may not be the best fit if you’re petite.

What Babylist Parents Say

“The Lillebaby complete is amazing. I love the lumbar support, the head support for baby, the fact that you don’t need an infant insert and that it grows with your child. It’s easy to adjust between people wearing baby as well. Love it.” -Lauren

Additional Specs
Weight limit 7-45 lbs
Available positions for baby Front-inward (fetal, infant or toddler settings), front-outward, hip or back carry

Baby Carriers We’re Keeping an Eye On…

We’re always searching for new products that we think parents will love and are worth a look!

  • Ergobaby’s Embrace Carrier is especially designed for the newborn days (but can be used for up to 18 months) and combines the softness of a wrap and the structured support of a carrier. It’s soft and simple to use and designed to keep your hands free and your baby close.
  • The Loop Baby Carrier from Solly Baby is designed for older babies (15-45 pounds) and is inspired by the short front cross carrying style wraps. It features a sewn-in ring design and balances the ease of as ling with the support of a wrap.
  • The CUDL is parent favorite brand Nuna’s first-ever baby carrier, and definitely worth checking out. Featuring three carry positions, magnetic locking buckles, an integrated infant booster and adjustable shoulder straps and waist belt, this comfy carrier doesn’t come cheap but is already getting rave reviews from users.
  • Hip Seat Carriers are an innovative new category of baby carrier that help you distribute your baby’s weight when you’re carrying them on your hip, making it more comfortable and ergonomic. The TushBaby is easy to put on and to wear and features storage pockets for your stuff.
  • Artipoppe carriers are celeb favorites and known for their one-of-a-kind prints and materials. Just be warned, though—they come at a steep price!

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