Monday, August 26, 2013

Infantino Review & Giveaway!

* Disclosure:  While I was provided these carriers for review, this is not a sponsored post and my opinions are 100% my own.

If you've been involved in the babywearing community at all in the recent years - you probably have heard a bit about Infantino.  The Infantino brand is one of the most commercially available babywearing brands in the major big box stores, and it has been for quite some time.  In the past, I'd been somewhat hesitant to use Infantino carriers due to the release and then recall of the SnugRider carrier - however, my opinions on the brand changed somewhat when we purchased a used Infantino Mei Tai and it very quickly became DH's favorite carrier.  We'd never had a carrier that inexpensive make it into our daily rotation of carriers, and I was intrigued to hear about the more ergonomic options currently being made by the company.

When Infantino offered to send me a few carriers, I was really interested to see what they'd had in store.  And, I was not let down one bit.

For review purposes, I was sent three carriers:  the Ergonomic carrier {Support}, the Mei Tai style carrier {Sash}, and the Comfort Wrap carrier {Sync}.

Most days, as a friend is currently borrowing my wrap, I've been reaching for a SSC for Little Lady during this stage of her development {7 months} - so my first try of the Infantino carriers was the ergonomic Support carrier.

Support ergonomic, sync wrap hybrid, and sash mei tai carriers

The Support carrier offers two carry positions - baby facing you, tummy to tummy, on your front or baby on your back for a baby 8-40 lbs.  I tested this both with Little Lady at 18 lbs and with Little Man at 30 lbs, and found it to be a great option for either child.  The Support is a perfectly ergonomic carry, seating baby with the proper body alignment with baby's knees at or above hip level, and I found it to be just as comfortable as my other SSC's.  There was one difference between the Infantino Support, however, and some of my other carriers, as seen below:

Support ergonomic, sync wrap hybrid, and sash mei tai carriers

If you'll notice on the Infantino Support on the left, there are two extra straps {one on each side} connecting the shoulder straps to the waist belt.  There are definitely upsides and downsides to the extra straps.  I do feel like they allow you to distribute your support a bit more evenly, and can help you to keep the waist belt up if you're comfortable with a lower position but have troubles with it riding down.  But because of where those straps are located, it does take me just a little more time to put a baby in the carrier or start my back carry with a hip scoot.  It's not a deal-breaker for me - it just takes a moment or two more.

Support ergonomic, sync wrap hybrid, and sash mei tai carriers
Little Lady definitely felt the sleepy dust here!
Also, there is one feature that I'm kind of sad about but DH absolutely LOVES, and that is the print.  Infantino put a really pretty black and white, flowery print inside the carrier as seen above, where baby's body touches, but the outside is just plain gray fabric.  I was a little miffed about it at first - but as soon as DH saw it, he we extremely excited that he could wear a carrier without ANY pattern on it.  So if your husband doesn't love to wear your flower and heart adorned carriers, this may be the one for him!

Overall, the Infantino Support is a fantastic carrier if you're looking for reliable comfort but still want a great deal.  You're not going to get all the bells and whistles on this carrier {such as a nap hood or pockets}, but at the price point of just around $30, this carrier is almost a full $100 less than most of the other Soft Structured Carriers out on the market.  And for $100 less?  I can put my keys in my pants pocket.  The Support carrier is a really excellent option if you're looking to wear your baby in comfort but don't have a ton of cash lying around.

The next carrier I pulled out was the Sync.  The Sync is a wrap, but has a buckle.  It's honestly the first kind of carrier I've seen with this configuration, and I was very intrigued to see how it worked.  Basically, the carrier has a waist belt that buckles in place, and then two long rails that are partially woven and partially stretchy cloth.  The rails wrap around the baby just as a wrap would in the pocket wrap cross carry.

The Sync is advertised to be used with babies 8-36 pounds and in four positions: infant, front, hip, and back.  After using the Sync with Little Lady {who is currently over 18 lbs at 7 months old}, I beg to differ a bit.  Let's talk about the weight limit first.  Because the wrap is partially woven and partially stretchy wrap, I would not recommend it to be used past around 15 lbs or even lower.  This is for the same reason I wouldn't recommend a Moby wrap past that weight.  The wrap tends to be too stretchy and can sag with the larger weight of the baby, providing less support and requiring extra hands to be on your baby to be sure they stay where they're supposed to be.

Support ergonomic, sync wrap hybrid, and sash mei tai carriers
You know, just eatin' an apple.  Wearin' my baby.
Little Lady does not tend to be a back-archer in any type of carrier/wrap, but there were several times - like right after I took the picture above - I had to put out a hand for her in the Sync when she leaned back a bit to see my face.  Her weight at 18 lbs was really over what I felt comfortable for the Sync could handle.  Because of that, I did not even attempt to wear Little Man {30 lbs} in this carrier as I knew it wouldn't be able to take his weight.

Support ergonomic, sync wrap hybrid, and sash mei tai carriers

As you can see in my second picture of the Sync, Little Lady was very easily able to start working the fabric down by twisting and turning a bit and it did give when she pushed away from me - which led to me taking her out of the wrap.

If we're talking about the back carry, I'd recommend against it for the same reasons.  A stretchy wrap - even if it's only part of the panel that is stretchy - is not going to give you the support you need for a back carry.  Especially since babies need to be a bit older and able to sit unassisted - which means they'll weigh more - to be worn in the type of carries this wrap would provide.

That said, for a parent of a new baby who hasn't worn their baby in the past, the Sync proves to be a somewhat less confusing option than some of the other stretchy wraps on the market.  The Sync gives you the comfort of having baby close in a wrap with a little bit less fabric to figure out when you're wearing, and can be a great option for someone with a very small baby.

The third carrier I received was the Sash or Mei Tai style carrier.  The Sash is for babies 8-36 pounds with three positions: tummy to tummy in a front carry, a hip carry, and a back carry.

You guys already know we love an Infantino Mei Tai, and the Sash carrier even improved upon that love.  The new Sash carrier has a few features that make it a carrier I'll definitely reach for in the future.  The first part I love about it is the nap hood.  DH wears Little Lady in a Mei Tai frequently, but without a nap hood when she falls asleep - her head bobbles around.  I love that the nap hood is able to be snapped up and support her head a bit.  It's also pretty awesome that if you don't love it, it's totally detachable.

Support ergonomic, sync wrap hybrid, and sash mei tai carriers

Another detail that I love about the carrier is the print.  To me - it doesn't look like a $35 carrier.  The print is beautiful!

Support ergonomic, sync wrap hybrid, and sash mei tai carriers
Snuggled in for some late night rocking
Both Little Man and Little Lady spent some time in the Sash carrier, and it was just as equally as supportive and comfortable for both, with no troubles at either weight range.  I would definitely agree with Infantino's description that the carrier "grows with baby for years of comfortable use."

I found the Sash carrier to be extremely comparable to other Mei Tai's I've worn, only at a MUCH lesser price point.  And since wearing it around a bit, I've actually had several people actually mistake the Sash for a more expensive brand of carrier.  The Sash is a really awesome carrier at an awesomely low price.

Support ergonomic, sync wrap hybrid, and sash mei tai carriers

In the future, we will definitely continue to use both the Support and Sash carriers.  If we're lucky enough to have another small baby or if I can borrow a friend's infant, I'd also love to see how the Sync carrier wears with a smaller baby.  Overall, I think that Infantino has come up with quite a few really great carriers at a price point that makes safe, ergonomic babywearing available to those parents who don't have $100-200+ to drop on a more expensive carrier.  I would recommend sticking to either the Support, Sash, or Sync carriers out of what Infantino offers due to the fact that they still manufacture quite a few carriers that are not ergonomically correct.  But I really do believe the carriers I was sent are going to get used in our home just as much as some of my other well-loved options.

And here's the fun part for you - Infantino and I are pairing up to give three lucky TNO readers a carrier.  One of you will win a Sync, one will win a Support, and one will win a Sash carrier!  Get to entering below and let me know if you have any questions!

{Just an FYI - if you leave one blog post comment, share on Facebook once each day, or tweet once each day, I'll count that as just fine to enter for all three carriers each day.  Don't feel like you have to tweet three times a day, once for each carrier.  Well, I mean, you can if you want ;) But you don't have to do so!}

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54 comments:

  1. Eloise will be 8 months old at the end of this week!

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  2. Sherry m: my daughter is 22 months.

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  3. the youngest is just 9 months.

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  4. my son is 6.5 months old (how did that happen!), and loves to be carried, so I would be so excited to try out a different style carrier to see how they work for us!

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  5. I'll be wearing a baby pretty soon but my 3.5 year old still loves being carried, too.

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  6. With a baby girl due in less than 10 weeks, these would be life savers in those newborn days and beyond

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  7. I have a 2 1/2 year old who LOVES to be worn, and also a 9 month old who loves it :) -Jessie O.

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  8. I'll get your wrap back to you someday soon, I promise ;-)

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    1. Oh, and I'll probably be wearing my 5 month old in one of these, but the two year old still thinks it's a treat to be worn!

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  9. I will be having baby # 2 in early January and I'm going to try having a carrier of some kind. I didn't with my first and it wasn't too bad, but I figured with a baby and my little guy running around I'm going to need all the hands I can get! I plan on using it as soon as the baby is born.

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  10. My first LO is 5.5 months old and I love baby wearing. I am still learning different carries and trying to branch out into different wraps so this giveaway is awesome!

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  11. Little missy is 9 months old! I would love to try and wear her!

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  12. This would be a gift for my boss. She is due in December!

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  13. This would be for a gift for my cousin. He is due to arrive in September.

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  14. I really want to wear my 5 month old!

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  15. I will be wearing my newborn due in December! I did wear my son now 2 until he was about 1.5 years but then he started not being interested and was getting too heavy for me.

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  16. I have a 14 month old that loves to be worn, but I'd also be holding future babies. :D I'm not done, yet!

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  17. I would probably lend one or give a carrier to my sister, who just had her first baby!

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  18. I wore my 21 month old for the first 14 months of her life. Then I got pregnant again and it hurt to wear her. I look forward to wearing our newborn baby soon.

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  19. I'm due with number 3 in December and live to babywear. Would be great to try out a new carrier. :)

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  20. I was just looking at buying the Infantino Support so this is exciting! My baby is almost 6 months old, but he is a small guy(13.5-14 lbs now I think).

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  21. I have the Sync and it is amazing for newborns! My son would fall right asleep in it. The newborn pouch makes it great. But you are right, like the Moby it is limited to the first couple months. Good thing it is so in expensive.

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  22. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  23. I think the sash would be great for baby #2 from birth.

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  24. Emma is 2, but this is more for the munchkin I'll be giving birth to in February!

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  25. My daughter is almost 10 months

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  26. Right now I'd probably use it with my niece who is about 7 weeks. And hopefully I'd get to use it for my own kiddo, whenever they decide to come along.

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  27. My little one will be 13 months and she still LOVES to be worn. I would love to try one of these carriers!

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  28. My Mr. Parker is 9 months old, and I still love carrying him. Looking for one that will work for us now that he is over 20 lbs.

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  29. I would love to win this, I already have a wrap my little girl and I love it!

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  30. My daughter is 7 months. I don't really wear my 3 1/2 year old anymore. Only when he wants a ride around the house. I draw the line at regularly wearing a 40lber! But more power to the mamas who do!

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  31. My daughter is 4 months old!! This would be perfect. Thank you! denisekonkel@gmail.com

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  32. My 9 month old..I could still use this for him

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  33. my daughter will be a month old on August 30th :)

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  34. My 25-pound toddler still loves to be worn!

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  35. The child I plan to wear isn't born yet!!!

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  36. I'm having a baby beg. of next year so this would be put to good use!

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  37. Planning to wear my soon to be here munchkin!

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  38. I'm planning to wear my 11 month old!

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  39. my daughter will be 2 months old on Sunday!

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  40. I am planning on gifting this to a friend who is expecting twins in two months!

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  41. my two month old grand daughter. I would love to win because I think this would be great for outings.

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  42. He's 13 months :) He wants to be held 24/7 or else he screams all day. kind of inconvenient!

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  43. my son still loves being worn at 15months and we'll be wearing #2 due this winter!

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  44. my guy is 18 months old jenna_burris

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  45. I have 2 children that I plan to wear...an 11 month old and a 2 year old.

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  46. I plan to wear my daughter, she is 22 months! And we hope to have 2 more in the future!

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