I’ve only been a mum for three months but I’m already a bit of a sling addict!
I started with a stretchy wrap then decided to add a ring sling to my collection. Now my baby’s a little bigger and has better head control I decided to buy a mei tai as well because they look comfortable to wear for long walks. I chose Babyhawk because of the brand’s reputation. It’s not the cheapest at £60-£70 for a basic mei tai but as I go out for walks a lot I thought it was worth investing in a good quality carrier that will hopefully last me a long time.
Putting the carrier on for the first time was so simple. Don’t be put off by the fact it doesn’t have buckles as it really is very straightforward to tie and comes with clear instructions. If you’re still confused check out YouTube as there are plenty of videos showing how to put on a mei tai. Babyhawks (and most mei tais) are suitable from birth through to toddlerhood and you can fold over the bottom of the large square part to hold your baby higher at the beginning. You can also tie the straps behind your baby’s back when they’re small, rather than underneath them. Although my baby is a few months old, she’s pretty small still so I carry her like a newborn in the Babyhawk with her legs froggied underneath her and she feels well supported. As babies grow they can have their legs out of the carrier and eventually can be carried on your back, rucksack style. The padded straps are so comfortable, and distribute weight evenly making for a comfortable carry for parents.
I love the fact that you can feed easily in this style of carrier. I practised at home a few times before feeding my baby out and about but have now fed her several times on the go and it was easy each time. Once she started fussing I was able to quickly latch her on with a minimum of hassle and continue on my way. When she’d finished the motion of walking, and her being upright, helped her bring her wind up really easily and she just dozed off to sleep. Check out my article Breastfeeding in a Sling or Carrier for more information about how to feed in a mei tai.
One of my favourite things about Babyhawk mei tais is how customisable they are: between the different straps and fabrics there are literally hundreds of combinations! Because they are reversible, you could choose a pattern for you on one side and for your partner on the other side meaning you can both wear it. This carrier would fit most people as the straps are nice and long.
Babyhawk is an American brand but there are plenty of UK distributors. A good starting point is the list of wholesalers on the Babyhawk website here http://www.babyhawk.com/Wholesale/Distributors/ . Between these distributors you will be able to find a good selection to choose from but you can also design your own carrier directly through Babyhawk as they ship worldwide and have an easy to use design tool on their website. I decided to buy from a UK distributor because I wanted my carrier quickly and was happy with the designs in stock.
Overall I’d give the Babyhawk mei tai 10/10, I can’t fault it and I’d say it was worth every penny I paid for it, especially considering how long it will last.