It’s warming up, and that means it’s time for outdoor festivals and all the babywearing that comes with them. I’ve often found that these events are crowded and on rough terrain. That makes strollers tough. And kiddos who get over-stimulated on crowds may also want to be held close. So babywearing is a great way to get through the events!
Don’t think you NEED to go by a specific carrier for summer. You can make what you have work. But…You will get sweaty! Your baby will get sweaty! But that’s OK. Summer is hot! Summer is sweaty! Strapping another human to you is hot and sweaty! Keep these tips in mind:
- NEVER use an ice pack either directly or covered to cool baby. Ice can burn the skin after 20 minutes on adults, and a shorter time period in babies or children.
- DO keep both baby and wearer hydrated by frequently drinking liquid.
- DO stay out of the sun.
- DO keep as much skin uncovered as possible. Bare skin will help the body cool itself.
- DO wear baby in a carrier that is breathable or made of breathable fabric,
- In dry climates, DO wet baby’s garments to assist in cooling.
- As always, use your best judgment! If the wearer or the baby are too hot, take the baby out of the carrier and cool down.
- You may also want to refer to some tips from the Beach Babywearing post.
In we cannot get out of the sun, I also make sure to have a hat for myself and/or baby (a wide brim hat for me will cover him some as well). I will also dress baby in UV protected clothing such as rash guard swim tops or UV treated baby legwarmers if possible. Make sure you both have eye protection.
Personally, ring slings of any fabric are my favorite summer carrier. Being single-shoulder and single-layer, they are about as cool as you can get when strapping a tiny human to you. But if you don’t like ring slings or don’t have one, use what works for you!
If you have an older kid who may want up and down multiple times, pick a carrier that you can accommodate that with. So maybe don’t whip out your fanciest wrap carry with a base +1 light colored wrap in the muddy parking lot, winkwink.
If you have multiple kids who may want up, bringing a carrier and a stroller that will both work for both kids is a great way to be able to switch out based on changing needs during the day.
As far as sunscreen, your favorite sunscreen should work just fine. Just make sure to rub the sunscreen in well so that it doesn’t leave white marks all over the carrier (especially for more natural zinc-based sunscreens) and be familiar with your carrier’s washing instructions should you need to toss it in the wash. You will likely need to wash (either spot clean or full wash) your carriers more during the hot summer months!
Thanks to all the Babywearing International of Southern Maryland members who shared photos for this post!