By Maura Keating
Everyone wishes that they could go back in time to advise their former self: Don’t date that boy. Study harder for that test. Enjoy lazy Saturdays while you can! If I could go back to my former self, I would definitely advise her to try a wrap with her colicky infant. I think it would have made a world of difference.
My current self has a toddler of two and a half years and an infant of eight weeks. We have been wrapping our infant daughter since Day Two and she loves it, we love it, my toddler loves it. The wrap is a minor miracle. My daughter typically falls asleep within five minutes of being wrapped. If she is fussy, she calms down. The wrap enables me to interact with my son without worrying about the Babe, or if my son is sleeping or my husband is home, I can actually get something done around the house (like write this review). My husband uses the wrap and my babysitter uses the wrap now too. People stop me in public and ask about the wrap–amazed that I am able to carry my two children or that my daughter is content in such a variety of settings.
I tested two wraps for this review–the Sleepy Wrap and the Moby Wrap. At first glance, they are very similar. Both are long pieces of cloth with tapered ends that are designed to be wrapped around your body. The wrapping procedure can be a little daunting, but keep trying, watch videos online, and you’ll be a pro before you know it–probably because your child will demand your expertise! Both the Moby Wrap and the Sleepy Wrap come with great instruction manuals with detailed instructions and full color pictures. Both have carrying sacks that you can use to store your wrap (assuming you’ll ever want to take it off). Both wraps are machine washable and dryer safe–essential for any carrier that will be exposed to an infant prone to spitting up or diaper blowouts. Both wraps I tested were exposed to all sorts of stains and cleaned up great.
I tried the Moby Wrap first–theÂ wrap you’ve probably heard of before (Brad Pitt was pictured using it . . . it’s pretty popular). The Moby is very well made and fits snugly. It must be folded before you tie it around your body, and I found that a bit tricky, especially if the wrap gets unfolded in transit and you are wrapping in public or anywhere you don’t want the ends (or tails) of the wrap to touch the ground. The Moby wrap is versatile–there are lots of different carry holds that you can use. My infant daughter prefers to be upright, but she also like the cradle hold. My toddler son is used to being carried on my back or on my hip, and the Moby was good for those carries, but the slight stretch made it difficult to wear the wrap for long periods in these carries. I was surprised, though, that my son also liked to be carried in front with the Moby when he was feeling cranky or tired and this was much more comfortable.
The Moby comes in a wide array of colors and there are many Moby styles to choose from, including organic fabrics, batik designs, and UV protection for sunnier days. Moby also makes the Moby D with a decorative fabric panel that is designed to be tied on the side.
The Sleepy Wrap may be newer to the market, but it already has won some diehard fans. I can see why. It is perfect for babies. It is made from a lighter fabric and has more stretch to it. Unlike the Moby, the Sleepy Wrap does not need to be folded when you are tying it on. The secret to a good fit with the Sleepy is to tie on TIGHT, like a too-tight T-shirt. These two features make the Sleepy Wrap easier to put on, especially for new users. It also makes it easy to keep on. I can keep this wrap on all day without needing to re-tie it, taking my baby in and out for errands, nursing, etc. The lighter fabric also makes it more comfortable to wear as the weather gets warmer. My daughter seems to prefer the tighter hold of this wrap. She also appreciates the slight bounce that this carrier has when I move. I reach for the Sleepy Wrap first when I need my baby daughter to sleep or if we are running errands, but its stretch was not as good for my much larger son (it dragged a bit after wearing him for a while and was tougher on my back). The Sleepy Wrap also comes a wide array of colors.
The two months since my daughter’s birth have been almost easy and I think that using a wrap has made all of the difference. If you are pregnant or even if you are already home with that bundle of joy, do not hesitate. Try wrapping your baby. You’ll be glad that you did, and so will Baby.
Moby Wrap, $39.95.
To find a Moby Wrap near you, visit the “Purchase” link at http://www.mobywrap.com
Sleepy Wrap Baby Carrier, $38.95.
To find a Sleepy Wrap near you, visit the “Buy Now” link at http://www.sleepywrap.com