Babywearing in the heat
We know that Tula parents love an adventure but when the temperature creeps up babywearing in the heat can seem a little more daunting. Don’t worry though, as always we’re here to support you and share our tips on how to keep you and baby safe and comfortable in your baby carrier so you can stay active, and keep on exploring the world together.
Dress in thin layers when babywearing in the heat
Babies are naturally warm little bundles, which can lead to you both feeling a little uncomfortable when babywearing in the heat. Your carrier or baby wrap acts as at least one extra layer of clothing, so it’s important to keep baby lightly dressed.
Aim for breathable, natural fabrics like cotton or linen for you and baby, and remember to keep a layer between you to minimise stickiness. Sportswear that wicks away moisture can also be a good choice for parents who prefer it.
Some babies resist wearing a sunhat no matter what you do so wearing a sunhat with a wide brim yourself can help keep baby shaded too.
Stay in the shade when babywearing in the heat
We know what it’s like when you’re trying to get things done, whether it’s going about your usual errands on a sunny day or trying to explore somewhere new on holiday, but staying out of the sun between 11am-3pm when the sun is at its strongest, and staying in the shade as much as possible all day can make a big difference. Try to schedule your busiest hours in the early morning to make the most of the coolest part of the day - chances are you’re up anyway right?
Protect yourself and baby from the elements
1. Sunscreen: Sunscreen is a must for everyone, use an SPF (sun protection factor) of at least 30 as a minimum, and don’t forget to put it on under baby’s clothes too as it is still possible to burn through thin clothing fabric.
2. Sunhood: All Tula carriers come with an integrated sunhood which can be attached to either one or both shoulder straps to protect baby when you are out in sunlight. This hood can also be used for privacy during breastfeeding.
3. Muslins: Muslins/Tula Baby Blankets have a multitude of uses, and added sun protection is another one to add to the list. If you don’t want to wear long sleeves or long trousers then draping a muslin over exposed little arms and legs can help shield them from the sun.
4. Spray bottle: A spray bottle (extra points for one with a fan!) can do wonders for keeping you both cool when babywearing in the heat. Pulse points are a great place to spritz, think elbows, wrists and knees, or go for hands and feet if they’re more accessible.
5. Ice packs: Ice packs can also be wrapped in a blanket and used to keep baby cool, just be careful not to let the pack touch baby’s skin directly and monitor them for any signs it might be making them too cold.
6. Umbrella: A final piece of kit than can be a big help if you have a spare hand is an umbrella or parasol. They create shade for you and baby when there’s none to be found naturally.
Keep hydrated (and don’t forget about yourself!)
It’s important that both you and baby are drinking plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration. If you breastfeed, breastmilk will keep your baby hydrated. You may find that baby wants to nurse more often.
Bottle-fed babies can be given cooled boiled water throughout the day alongside their usual feeds. Make sure you are looking after yourself too by taking a bottle of water to keep up with the extra demands on your body.
Switch up your positions when babywearing in the heat
When it’s hot outside, wearing baby on your chest can feel like wearing a hot water bottle, so you might find that a different carry position is more comfortable for you both. All our carriers support a back carry once baby is old enough and if you have our Half Buckle carrier you could try a hip carry too. Remember to only use these positions once your baby is developmentally ready.
Consider choosing a Tula Coast Carrier
Many of our stylish prints are available in exclusive Tula Coast versions which are specifically designed for babywearing in the heat. If you’ll regularly be using your carrier in warmer weather, then it’s definitely worth considering. After all, it’s easier to warm up on a cold day, than cool down on a hot day.
Our Tula Coast Carriers are available in our Explore, Free-To-Grow, Standard, and Toddler Carrier styles and are designed to bring the feel of a cool ocean breeze to your daily adventures. Tula Coast Carriers are a reinterpretation of our original framed panel design into a ventilated carrier, perfectly suited for active lifestyles and warm weather. Each Coast Carrier is made with a high-quality mesh centre panel, a detachable mesh hood and our newer models also come with mesh on the inside of our arm straps for extra breathability.
Know Your T.I.C.K.S.
The T.I.C.K.S. Rule for Safe Babywearing are always important, but on a hot day or in warmer climates it’s even more critical that you monitor your baby for their cues and respond to their needs.
Further references and advice:
Summer Slings and Keeping Safe | The Sheffield Sling Surgery
Diet for a Healthy Breastfeeding Mum | Babycentre UK