As a new mom, being able to breastfeed while baby-wearing is an invaluable tool. There definitely is a learning curve but with a little practice and finding the best baby carriers for breastfeeding, you will be a champ at nursing your baby in the carrier in no time.
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One of the best things that you can do for your breastfeeding relationship is to be able to nurse your hungry baby on demand while enjoying those sweet snuggles.
If you have multiple kids, you know that being able to breastfeed on the go would be so helpful. This is why I have made a list of the best carriers for breastfeeding.
From my personal experience of having a 3-year-old and a newborn baby, being able to nurse in the carrier helped so much. Babies nurse so much and my 3-year-old needed me more than ever. This kept my hands free and my baby so happy!
Can You Breastfeed In A Baby Carrier?
Yes! You definitely can! It might take a little bit of practice, but there are so many beneficial things to being able to breastfeed in a carrier that it is so worth it in the end. Later on, I will tell you step by step how to breastfeed in a carrier and which carriers are best.
Which Baby Carrier Is Best For Breastfeeding?
I love using a ring sling for when they are newborns. They are so happy being all wrapped up and close to your chest. It is so much like the womb for them and the sling is so easy to adjust. Plus I love that it takes up so little space in my diaper bag. It is the best start to breastfeeding in a sling because it’s quick to learn in.
For older babies and for older children a structured carrier is better to have support for your back, shoulders, and a wiggly baby or toddler. I also love that they are easy to adjust and my baby always feels so secure. The only drawback is they take up quite a bit of space in your diaper bag.
Are Wraps Better Than Carriers?
That depends on your baby’s size and the different ages you plan to breastfeed in the carrier. I personally prefer to breastfeed in a structured carrier because of the ease of adjusting the carrier and it can truly be hands-free.
Wraps are a great option for when they are newer but are old enough to breastfeed in an upright position. They love the feel of how snug they are on your chest. The only drawback is it can be harder to adjust.
What To Look For In A Baby Carrier
Wondering what to look for in a baby carrier? There are so many popular baby carriers now with so many different styles and different positions. Well, it all depends on your baby’s age, your body type, and how long you plan to use the baby carrier.
Different Types Of Carriers
There are many types of baby carriers. All have different benefits depending on what you need.
Soft Structured Carrier
These are more traditional carriers with great support. This one might be harder to breastfeed in the beginning. It typically comes with an infant insert to keep their head upright and supported. It’s great to have more of a structured baby carrier for when your baby starts to wiggle more and reach for things. They are also great for a mom that is new to baby-wearing because the buckles make it so easy to get on and stay on.
This is the best for hands-free nursing because of all the support and structure. I’ve personally used this style of carrier for hiking all over Zion National Park while breastfeeding my 6-week-old on demand. I think it is the best baby carrier for nursing and walking at the same time.
This is a long piece of fabric that is wrapped around your torso. This is a great option for petite moms and they are awesome for breastfeeding in. There is a lot of stretch to the wrap which allows some extra privacy. Another great thing about this style is you can use it as a nursing cover when it isn’t used as a carrier.
This is a great carrier for young babies because they love how snug they feel against your chest. The only thing is it can be difficult to adjust since you have to untie it to tighten or loosen it.
Ring Sling Carrier
Also known as a “pouch sling” and is one of my favorites for wearing my newborn baby. It is made with a thicker woven wrap that is long with two metal rings at the end. You lock the wrap in by sliding it through the rings creating a loop with the fabric.
You can leave the tail of the fabric down or wrap it around the metal rings. This baby sling is a great option to pop baby in quickly for when you are going in and out of the car or you quickly need a free hand but your baby doesn’t want to be set down.
It adjusts very easily by pulling on the tail of the fabric to tighten it. You loosen it by pulling the rings up towards the sky and tugging on the loop part of the fabric.
Meh Dai Carrier
Also known as a Meh Tai carrier. It’s a mix between a soft structured carrier and a wrap carrier. They have a more structured part for the baby’s back and long straps that have more padding in the shoulder straps and cross along the back then wraps around the waist and are tied in a knot to secure it.
This is a good option for someone that likes the wraps but wants a bit more support for their shoulders. There is a lot of versatility for being able to breastfeed in the carrier but will not be able to adjust as quickly as the ring sling and the structured carriers.
These carriers have the most support and are great for long hikes. They usually have a waist strap and shoulder straps with buckles. The baby is carried high on your back. This is a great option for hitting the trails but breastfeeding is not an option and they are quite bulky.
How To Breastfeed In A Carrier
It can be tricky to get the hang of breastfeeding in a baby carrier but once you know the steps and have you little bit of practice, you will get the hang of it.
How To Breastfeed In A Baby Sling
Ring Sling- This is the best for a newborn. Once your baby is in the sling, position the baby’s head on the opposite shoulder from the ring. If the metal rings are on your right shoulder then you should position the baby’s head towards your left breast.
Make sure your baby’s head is at the proper height at chest level. You can do this by carefully adjusting the ring. Have one arm supporting the baby while the other hand is moving the ring up towards the sky to loosen the sling.
Wearing a nursing bra and a shirt or nursing shirt will help with easy access to breastfeeding in the carrier. Once your baby is at the right height, turn your baby’s face towards your breast to start breastfeeding. Your baby should be in a cradle position and the nose should be pointed up towards the sky to allow enough space to breathe.
How To Breastfeed In A Structured Carrier
This is the best option for older babies that like to breastfeed in an upright position. Once the baby is secured in the carrier, support your baby’s weight with one arm while loosening the straps with the other arm. This will lower the baby to chest level to breastfeed.
Lift your shirt and lower your nursing bra. Turn your baby’s head towards your breast to start breastfeeding. Tighten the straps if needed. Some structured carriers have a hood that you can use for head support as well as some privacy. If not, use your hand to support your baby’s head.
How To Breastfeed In A Wrap And A Meh Dai Carrier
Breastfeeding in these carriers is better with smaller babies. Once the baby is secure in the carrier, support the baby with one arm while you loosen the knot with the other. It would be best to find a good place to sit down until you feel comfortable adjusting the carrier. Once your baby is chest level, you can tighten the knot and begin to breastfeed.
Best Carriers For Breastfeeding
This is a great carrier for someone that is new to baby wearing. It is very easy to put on and there is no tying or buckles to worry about. Simply put it over your head and through each arm like a shirt and place your baby into the carrier.
I also love that you can use it as forward-facing for when your baby gets a little older. The only thing is having a baby on your back or on your hip isn’t an option.
Grows with baby
Easy to use
Can Breastfeed in easily
Can’t use it on your back or hip
Not a lot of support for your shoulders and back
I have had this baby carrier for years. I wore it while I hiked all over Zion National Park and breastfed my baby very easily in it. It is very durable and easy to use. I love how secure the baby is so you don’t have to worry about them falling out if you bend over. There are a lot of different options for wearing a baby as well. You can also cross the straps on your back for added support or if you are a petite mom.
The only thing I didn’t love is how much space it takes up in the diaper bag when I wasn’t using it. This carrier is very durable but be sure to add a teething pad to the carrier to protect the straps if your baby likes to chew.
Easy to use
Easy to adjust
Bulky in the diaper bag
This is a great option if you are looking for a mei tai style carrier. It has the soft straps and wraps like feel for your baby but the ease of use with the buckle on the waist strap. I love that it is super compact when you aren’t using it and it is easily adjustable for breastfeeding
Wrap like feel
Easy waist buckle
The wrap can be intimidating for someone new to babywearing
Solly Baby Wrap
This wrap is a great lightweight fabric. It has a lot of stretch so you and your baby will be very comfortable even in the hotter months of the year. I had this carrier for my first baby and loved it so much. It’s a very soft fabric and it comes in different colors. Your baby will feel so snug and happy in this carrier and it can be adjusted for breastfeeding and is easy after some practice.
Very soft fabric
Nice for hotter weather
Takes practice to tie and adjust
This is such a cool ring sling! I absolutely love that it has a zipper pocket sewn on. The strap is extra wide for more support and comfort. It can also be adjusted to be more narrow depending on your preference. I love that the lining is made with spandex that grips your shoulder so you don’t have to worry about the fabric riding up. Ring slings are great for breastfeeding in. I love that you can use the tail of the fabric as a cover for some extra privacy while breastfeeding.
Adjustable back width
Grippy fabric to prevent the fabric from riding on your shoulder
This is a great option for calming a baby down and it comes with a lot of fabric. It is a thicker fabric for more support so it’s great for cooler months but not so great in the hotter months. The fabric measures a whopping 18 feet so it is great for plus-size moms or just growing with your baby. Once you get the hang of putting on the wrap there are 4 different holds you can carry your baby in.
Calming for baby
So much fabric can be overwhelming
This is a great baby carrier! It has mesh fabric so it is lightweight and breathable. You can use it from newborn to toddler, up to 45 pounds. You can wear your baby in all 6 positions, so it is very versatile. I love that it comes with an additional pocket for when you are wearing those leggings without the pockets and you still need to put your phone somewhere. It also comes with a hood for added head support and shade for your baby. It also comes with extra lumbar support for your back.
Added lumbar support
Mesh fabric can feel rough
I love that this sling is machine washable! It is easy to put on and adjust. You are able to carry your baby in two positions, the front carry and the hip carry. It is perfect for newborns and to breastfeed in. It comes in some really cute colors as well.
Easy to use
Great for newborns
Great for breastfeeding
Can use up to only 33 pounds
I love that this carrier has so much support. This is a great baby carrier for a mom that struggles with back pain. It is really versatile with 6 different carrying positions. The straps are all padded to feel comfortable when you are wearing your baby for long periods of time. There is great ventilation for those hot summer months. The buckles make it easy to put on and easy to adjust for breastfeeding.
Lots of back support
Easy to adjust for breastfeeding
Can feel bulky
This is a soft structured carrier. I love the pocket on the waist strap. It holds babies from 15-45 pounds but you can also add an infant insert if need be. Tula carriers are great for breastfeeding and give you a lot of coverage. They are easy to adjust and allow two carrying positions. They also are made with some really cute designs.
Comes with pockets
Lot of coverage for breastfeeding
Only two ways to carry your baby
This is a really beautiful ring sling. I love the colors it comes in. The fabric is made with luxury bamboo and linen that is super soft. I love that the company gives back to charity for low-income families with every purchase and that it comes with a lifetime guarantee.
Easy to breastfeed in
Can put more strain on one shoulder
This is a more structured style that Tula makes. I love the mesh fabric to make it more breathable for the hotter months of the year. This carrier allows you to wear your baby on the front and the back, including forward-facing when they are in the front. There is a lot of cushion and support for comfort. There is no infant insert required in this carrier and you can wear your baby from 7-45 pounds.
Easily adjustable for breastfeeding
Breathable mesh fabric
Won’t fit very well in a diaper bag when not in use
Being able to breastfeed while your baby is in the carrier is such a helpful tool. Be sure to find a local babywearing meet-up to find some peer support. This will help you see all the different positions you will be able to carry your baby in and you will feel more confident having support near. No matter what your baby’s age is, this will create an amazing bond between you and your baby.