Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Carriers Comparison

Before anything, just want to express my deepest gratitude to those who came up with the Internet. For a person who loves researching on almost anything and everything, I simply cannot live without it. Without it, I would not have discovered Babywearing. Without the Internet, I would not be wearing my baby... I might have simply stopped breastfeeding... I would not know that modern cloth diapering could be so easy and fuss free!

Well, as many have asked, there are, of course, many different type of slings around and with each type, depending on personal preferences, has its pros and cons.

Most of you are probably aware of this but what is found in the Malaysian market is mostly of the one-shoulder variety - the ring sling, the pouch and the selendang(usually seen used by Indonesian maids- no rings, no buckles, nothing... just tie a piece of selendang together and voila! a sling is made!).

As far as I know, the ring sling made its appearance about 5 years ago while pouches started appearing in about 2 years ago.

Personally, I have now tried the pouch, the ring sling and just recently, the Podaegi. So, here's my personal comparison on them. Again, these are my personal opinions, based on my personal experiences, which might not apply to you.
Pouch


What is it??

This is the one I started with. This is the one I fell in love with. This is the one I love most... guess that's why I am selling this and not others ;). Simply, it is two layers of fabric sewn together into a turbular sash-like carrier.

Pros

  • Easiest to use. No straps, buckles, no nothing that makes it difficult.

  • Great pop-a-bility... ability to pop my Little Arthur in and out in just seconds.

  • Nothing to hide away.

  • Many positions possible (up to 6!).

  • Light and handy enough to just pop into the bag and bring along.

  • Also great for the guys as this could be considered the least-fuss carrier ;)

  • Breastfeeding possible.
Cons

  • One shoulder carry only.

  • Might be necessary to switch to another side for long-term carry.

  • Back carry might not work for those who are not confident enough though those pictures of it being used in the back carry position is very tempting.

  • Accurate sizing is necessary - wrong size = wrong sling!

  • Difficult to breastfeed a toddler

  • While it is constructed safe enough to carry a child weighing up to 15 kgs, I am beginning to feel the ache on my shoulder if I carry Arthur for more than 2 hours now that he is almost 12 kg. Then again, it didn't stop my Sis from carrying her 12+kg DD when they go to crowded areas like fairs and pasar malam ;).. just to play safe...
Ring Sling
(prob should wear this again for a pic)

What is it??

Ok... I tried this and didn't really like it. Probably because I was spoilt by the convenience and the user-friendliness of the pouch to begin with. Similar to the pouch, it is a one-shoulder carry carrier, only difference is that it is adjustable with a ring/buckle and it has excess fabric for this.

Pros


  • Adjustable, one size fits most.

  • Breastfeeding possible, even for a toddler. Extra fabric provides ample coverage while breastfeeding.

  • Many positions possible (just like the pouch).

  • Pop-a-bility ok.. migth need to adjust a little every time, though.

Cons

  • Same as above for the pouch.

  • Steeper learning curve compared to the pouch... need to work out how to thread the fabric through the ring.


Podaegi

(aka the Pod)


What is it??

Ok, as Arthur is loving the back carry position and I am not confident enough to put him in this position for a long period of time (he wiggles so much as he is excited every time I carry him this way), I am looking into the two-shoulder carriers to provide a more secure back carry. Briefly, it is a Korean inspired carrier with a blanket and long straps.

Pros

  • Two shoulder carry. Weight distribution even better.

  • Good for toddlers... more 'weightless' than the pouch or the ring sling.

  • Good for back carries

  • One size fits most
Cons

  • Steeper learning curve than the ring sling. Really takes lots of practice with this one.

  • Difficult to breastfeed.

  • Not many positions possible.

  • Not as good for newborn... probably at least 6 months and up (with good head control)

Wanna know what other carriers are available worldwide and how they fare in comparison? Check these out:

http://www.theslingconnection.com/Site/comparison%20chart.html

http://www.thebabywearer.com/index.php?page=comparisonofcarriers

http://www.theslingstation.com/comparison-chart.html

http://www.pittsburghnino.com/types.htm

3 comments:

shida said...

im interested in ergo baby carrier. but the price soooo expensive. i think mei tai/pod is similar to that isnt it.

cant wait to get one if u manage to sew mei tai.

Peridot&Sapphire said...

thanks jess for your input... i may consider to invest in one of them soon...

Jess said...

Shida, the Ergo is what we call a soft structured carrier... closer to mei tai than a pod. It offers two shoulders carry for even weight distribution. It has received very good feedback though I must agree that it is pricey. ļ¼©haven't got the chance to try it out, though... still believe in pouches more as I am the kind of person who doesn't like to carry much things with me when we are on the go ;)

Sharine,great to hear that you are going to invest in a sling soon ;) We would love to read your blogs on that ;)