Baby Wearing… something I didn’t know much about. Something I didn’t ever do with Sophie. With Charlie? I decided to give it a go! After reading lots of positive articles about the benefits of baby wearing, particularly in newborns, I was determined it was something I wanted to try.
Why Baby Wearing?
Research has shown that baby wearing has many positive effects on a newborn baby. Babies that are held more tend to cry & fuss less. In cultures where baby wearing is ‘the norm’, babies on average cry for only a few minutes per day. Comparatively, in Western society, babies can cry for hours releasing unnecessary stress hormones. If baby is being held & feels warmth & comfort, they can spend their time observing & learning about their environment instead. Wraps have also been shown to be especially effective when dealing with colicky babies.
Baby wearing also promotes excellent communication between the wearer & baby, allowing carers to recognise their child’s needs quickly & effectively by learning their different facial expressions & movements. This in turn creates a special bond between the baby & the wearer, alongside all those extra cuddles!
With these benefits (and many more!) in mind, I was really pleased when It’s A Sling Thing got in touch to see if I would like to try out their postal sling hire service.
It’s a Sling Thing – Hire, Try and Buy Our Spectacular Sling Selection
‘It’s a Sling Thing’ is the UK’s largest postal sling & carrier hire company with a library FULL of different baby wearing items to choose from. Items range from stretchy wraps, buckle carriers, woven wraps, baby wearing coats & much more. With excellent quality products & fantastic customer service, they provide an invaluable resource for anyone who wants to try a baby carrier before buying one.
If you do decide to purchase from It’s a Sling Thing, you can often pick up a bargain ex-rental buy. Their new website also has a large retail section where you can shop for a range of wraps, carriers and accessories.
Try Before You Buy
As part of my review, I was offered to test out the ‘Try Before You Buy’ scheme available on the website. Try Before You Buy gives you the opportunity to try out a brand new sling for 2 weeks, giving plenty of time to see if it works for you. To receive the carrier you will need to pay a hire fee and a small deposit, but it is so worth it as you can easily return it if you don’t like it OR you can pay a small top up fee & keep the item if you fall in love.
As a baby wearing newbie, I didn’t really know where to start as there are so many options on the site. However, this is where the owners of It’s a Sling Thing really helped out. Jenni took the time to phone me & go through all the different options. She gave me sound advice based on my needs & past experiences. At the end of our chat she sent me over some stretchy wrap options to choose from &, once my choice had been made, I received the wrap within days.
Baby Wearing Wrap: Lifft Slings Stretchy Wrap
The product I chose was a Lifft Slings Stretchy Wrap in blue. Made with cotton and elastene, this super soft two-way stretchy wrap has good stretch and elasticity. It enables you to keep your baby close and supported, in a natural, ergonomic position. I chose this wrap as it is suitable from birth, so a great introductory sling & ideal for baby wearing newbies like myself. The wrap can be used on older babies too, making it a good longer term investment.
We put the baby wearing wrap to the test within days of Charlie being born. Upon opening the box I was a little overwhelmed at how much fabric there actually is! Fortunately, the wrap comes with a set of well written & illustrated instructions. The large Lifft logo sewn into the centre of the wrap makes it easy to locate the middle marker. Also, with the high contrast overlocked edge, the edges are easy to find which helps to avoid twists in the fabric. Overall it was fairly easy to wrap around and I liked that you could pre-tie it, allowing you to place baby in and out throughout the day.
How Did I Get On?
It was really nice being so close to Charlie all the time, having little ‘chats’ with him & being able to sense immediately if he was about to cry. Having him so close meant I could respond to his needs much faster which I’m sure he appreciated.
Wearing the wrap around the house was one of the main benefits for me. It meant I could get on with any housework or toddler duties hands-free. It was also really useful when out & about, although I only used it when going somewhere I could walk to as I still need to put the wrap on at home. I don’t yet feel confident enough in navigating trying to tie the sling in my car & putting baby in whilst dealing with a toddler! I’m sure this is something that will come with time & practice. Another advantage would be the ease with which breastfeeding parents could use the sling to feed their baby discreetly & on the move.
If you are unsure as to whether baby wearing is right for you, It’s a Sling Thing provide the perfect opportunity to test it out first, before investing too much money. The amount of support & knowledge provided by the owners is invaluable & they even offer online consultations to help users wear their sling correctly & comfortably for adult & baby. As a new baby wearer, I am starting to see why so many parents do it. I love the feeling of having my baby snuggled into my chest & he was certainly happy!
**We received a Lifft Sling from It’s A Sling Thing in return for this baby wearing wrap review. All thoughts & opinions are our own.