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As your little one is growing, they are always so eager to explore everywhere on their own two feet. However, those little legs tend to feel worn out quickly. Well, when you come to think of it, big legs do too! If only you had a carrier that could help you, when you’re out and about and trying to wrangle your tiny adventurer and would accommodate bigger kids too. Keep on reading and who knows you might find exactly what you’re looking for!
What Is A Toddler Carrier?
It is a soft-structured carrier that can carry your little ones beyond the baby stage. The toddler carrier comes with padded adjustable shoulder straps and a waist belt to evenly distribute your child’s weight and to reduce strain on your shoulders, neck, and back. They also provide a wide-seat, hip-healthy position that places your kid’s legs in a frog-like position. In most toddler carriers, you can find a hood that protects your little one’s head from the sun as well as a storage pocket for your everyday essentials. They are best suitable from infancy through the toddler years.
Do You Need a Toddler Carrier?
Most parents tend to start with a wrap or a ring sling for their newborns. This keeps them tight and close and also supports their neck. However, as your toddler grows, you’ll need more support if you want to carry them for long stretches. When you don’t want your little ones roaming free (for instance, the airport, street festivals, or the boutique with all the breakables) or when they get tired, it is helpful both for them and for you, if you have a place where they can safely sit to rest. Yes, a stroller checks all these boxes too, however, a carrier is a better option, if you’re going to be in a small or crowded space or if you’re craving a little extra snuggle time. Check the weight limit of a structured baby carrier with buckles or Velcro (if you already have one), it might work for the toddler years too. As a reference, a two-year-old is about 28 pounds, whereas a three-year-old is almost 32 pounds.
How To Choose The Best Toddler Carriers?
After collecting the reviews and opinions of real families about the baby products they love the most, and the top products that they shared with us, we added our research and insight to tell you all about the best toddler carriers available. Let’s go!
5 Best Toddler Carriers For You
1. LILLEbaby 3 in 1 CarryOn All Seasons Toddler Carrier
Unlike most baby carriers that can hold up to 45 pounds, this fabric carrier can hold from 20 pounds to 60 pounds comfortably. It also lets you keep your hands free and visit places you won’t be able to with a stroller.
You can use this carrier in three different styles: Firstly, you can keep it to the side on either hip, secondly, you can use it as a front carrier, or thirdly, you can carry it on your back. This carrier comes with three-way adjustable buckles in different places, which allows the carrier to grow with your baby. It has extra room for your baby’s comfort and a temperature control panel that ensures that your child doesn’t overheat. In addition to that, it has a removable hood and two pockets, and a wide padded band that goes around your waist to provide lumbar support. The added cushion on the back keeps the adjustable strap from digging into your skin.
For extra comfort as your toddler gets heavy, the shoulders are padded too. As it is made out of 100% cotton fabric, you can simply toss it in the wash for easy care, when your toddler spills apple juice or falls asleep and drools. With your baby’s hip development in mind, the carrier is made in such a way that it keeps your baby’s legs in an M-shape. It is made available in four colors, black, stone, dark gray, and dark coral.
Keep In Mind
Remember to use this carrier with a baby of at least 20 pounds and refrain from using it for smaller or younger babies. Moreover, the zip that allows airflow does not tuck into anything, so it can annoy you while walking around. It is a bit pricey than other brands.
2. Tula Ergonomic Carrier
This carrier is available in 18 different colors and patterns to suit everyone’s personality. Furthermore, it costs around half the price of other toddler carriers. You can carry it on the front or the back, although you cannot wear it on the hip like the other carriers. It is made out of a breathable and lightweight canvas which is 100 percent Oeko-tex standard 100 certified canvas. This carrier can hold somewhere between 25 to 60 pounds. It also has the M-position which supports the proper development of your little one and makes it a comfortable place for your baby to rest.
Besides, it includes dual adjustable padded shoulders to ensure comfort and support for your neck and shoulder and a removable hood which protects your baby from the sun. Finally, it provides all-around support for the mom with its wide adjustable front panel. Also, the band distributes your toddler’s weight evenly. It is meant for children that are 32 inches and up.
Check out our article on best baby sunscreen.
Keep In Mind
If a dad wants a more neutrally designed carrier, you might have to look for it. Also, it might be difficult to put on by yourself.
3. Beco Toddler Carrier
Although this toddler carrier costs a lot, it’s one of the best options available for a child who weighs around 20 to 60 pounds. Even dad would like to carry their children around in this carrier as it comes in a cool dark gray color. If you like fun patterns you can for their two available options, which are nebula, and geo teal, and white. The adjustable features are well-loved by parents, as you can fit extra small adults up to XXL in size. You can also carry it in three different ways, on either hip, front, or back. It has some added new features which you cannot see in other carriers, such as crossable shoulder straps and a waist belt pocket. The 3D mesh vented panel for added airflow is something that children 18 months and older will love. Besides, it has a built-in headrest and a detachable sleep hood that can also protect your kid from the sun. You can nurse in the carrier, that too hands-free! If there is a leak, you can simply toss it in the wash.
Keep In Mind
It is a bit on the pricier side which might deter a lot of customers. Otherwise, this carrier is great for any larger small children.
4. Piggyback Rider Explorer
This carrier works for moms, moreover, the camo print was made with dads kept in mind. Anyhow, your kids can stand on a metal platform attached to their parent’s backs, which makes this carrier all the more unique. It comes in two pieces, the first one for parents with a back anchor where you can hold the straps together and the metal platform for your child to stand on. The second one holds a back anchor with straps for a child to attach to their parent, this way you can keep your kid safe from falling off the platform. This toddler is best suitable for kids who are around 2-4 years old or children that are up to 50 pounds. Though it can hold more it depends on the parent and the child. This setup works better for parents’ back as the weight shifts with the child standing. Your toddler needs to stand to use this carrier and if they feel sleepy there is no option available to relax because their hands rest on their parent’s shoulders and their feet on the platform. If your little one spends a lot of time napping, then this is not a good option.
Moreover, the straps on this carrier are adjustable and you can purchase a HIP BELT for extra comfort. It is so far the lightest option available as it is under three pounds. In an included bag, you can store the small device easily. Besides, it comes with a six-point military-grade safety harness which ensures no one is injured at all times. Also, it has rear pockets that offer a little storage, and to optimize a child’s standing position, the metal platform offers non-skid.
Keep In Mind
It almost seems unfair that such a small device is so expensive. Nevertheless, with this price you are getting a tested device with premium parts meant to last for more than infant weights and works well too. Although it is a better option for parents back, it’s not that comfortable for children as they cannot rest on this device.
5. Little TiB Ergonomic Baby Carrier
You can get this baby carrier for a fraction of the cost of the other carriers listed above. This is the most affordable carrier for your little one. It is made out of 100 percent organic natural polyesters which makes it an amazing option for eco-friendly moms. Plus, it comes with a mesh over the front that provides ventilation for your toddler. After spills and accidents, you can simply toss this fabric in the washing machine. This carrier’s design provides support for a child’s natural neck and head posture and doesn’t put a strain on the hips or spine. While supporting the baby’s weight at the bottom, the M- position allows good circulation for your baby. Unlike the other carriers, this one can support from 8 to 55 pounds, which is a lot of weight for a parent to carry, hence why this carrier provides lumbar and back support.
Keep In Mind
It might run a little tight and could be difficult to put on. This carrier is best suitable for smaller moms and babies. Also, it works best if it is used as a front carrier.
Whichever carrier you end up choosing, it should be a safe and comfy resting place for your toddler. If you get a chance, head to a store and check out these carriers in person before you commit. After that, you are ready to set off on your next adventure, toddler in tow!