Oh Baby K’tan how I love thee. This is one of THE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS to have for a new baby. I use mine literally hours every day for my baby, and it’s invaluable whether this is your first child or you’re chasing around other ones too! Read on for the ins and outs of the Baby K’tan Original Carrier.
I do have affiliate links here for products I’ve bought and love to use! I double-checked facts at www.babyktan.com and the opinions are my own, from oodles of personal experience.
So as I write this, I’m literally wearing my four month old in our purple eggplant original K’tan. This thing is a lifesaver and I’m so glad I jumped on board! Here’s a quick backstory…
I had my first kid in 2013, and attempted to babywear occasionally. We had lots and lots of issues breastfeeding and… yeah. I felt that babywearing was this nice thing I could try one day when I got everything else figured out. I wore him every once in a while in a cheaply made ring sling, and it wasn’t really enjoyable. I also had to go back to work when he was just a few months old so I didn’t have a ton of time at home with him.
When he got older, I did use my Ergo all the time, and it was great! I loved the concept of babywearing – keeping them close, safe, warm, and me being hands-free to do what I needed to do. (I’ll do a review of my Ergo one day soon). Here’s a stock image of what Ergo I have:
When I found out I was pregnant again, I wanted to make more of an effort to babywear. I was also able to quit my job and would be staying at home with two under three (whee!). How was I going to get anything done unless I could wear my baby?!
I was already pretty familiar with various ways to baby wear, but didn’t know what to use with a newborn. You can use an Ergo but it’s a structured carrier and I didn’t feel it would be the best bet for a brand-new squishy. I personally hated the Moby, wasn’t crazy about hubby’s mei tai, and knew about others but just couldn’t afford them. (Some ring slings, for example, show up for sale USED on my babywearing group for over $300…).
Enter the Baby K’tan Original Carrier. Super affordable, super comfortable, super versatile, and super easy to use. It is THE best beginner carrier in my opinion.
It’s 100% natural cotton and is machine washable. It does stretch a little bit, and there’s a sizing chart on the website. The K’tan comes in two parts: the main piece which is a series of sewn-together loops, and the belt piece which also doubles as the carrying bag. (In the photo below, the belt piece is super wide across baby’s back and has the white logo patch on it).
Unlike the Moby, you don’t have to be intimidated by seemingly endless pieces of fabric to fold, wrap, tie, flip over, etc. It’s all done for you. You slip the main piece over your head like an infinity scarf, split the two loops and put one arm through each one, and then you’re ready to carry your baby in one of many ways. (A video shows and explains much better than text, so look for it at the end of this post).
You can wear baby from 8-35 pounds; I actually started wearing my baby when she was less than a week old, and it was glorious. I loved it, and now at four months she looks forward to it. When it’s time for morning nap, she smiles as she sees me put it on and then goes right to sleep. We do this for almost all her naps, and whenever we are out in public.
For perspective: my son is over 2.5 years old and still under the max of 35 pounds. I would look ridiculous but I could totally still wear him too!
With this carrier, you can also wear your child in different ways. A newborn can be worn in kangaroo carry, and once they have head control you can start with some of the other ways.
Oh and did I mention everything you can do while wearing your baby? Drink coffee (or wine), read, do dishes, vacuum, read my blog, stalk ex-boyfriends on Facebook, watch bad TV. BREASTFEED. Yep you read that right – hands free nursing on the go! Woo! And your back won’t be killing you.
Now, this would not be an honest review unless I told you what I do not like – this is a small list and rather picky, but it is only fair.
My biggest complaint about the Baby K’tan is that in my experience, their sizing chart is way off. I had put one on my registry and size “large” as that is what it suggested. I ended up exchanging that for a medium, and exchanging again for a small. (Btw, BabyList is where I registered and did the exchanging, and their customer service was so kind and wonderful. You can read my full review of them here). But what an embarrassment! – and a waste of time. I was in contact with a super sweet rep at Baby K’tan, making sure I wasn’t crazy about mine being too big. When they heard what was going on, they’d agreed that I needed to size down.
Similarly, I feel that the carrier can change pretty significantly by stretching out (and shrinking back up quite a bit when washed). This is true even when I line dry it. K’tan does claim that its carriers will stretch with wear, but my baby droops lower by a good three or four inches when I can tell it’s time to shrink it again. She’s only 11 pounds now so I consider that to be pretty major.
A really tiny annoyance for me is that the fabric loops can sometimes get twisted. That’s a no-brainer since the K’tan is so simple and pre-assembled, so to speak, but it still bugs me. You don’t want your loops to get twisted up because it’ll be uncomfortable, and will make Baby sit unevenly. So I sometimes have to spend a few seconds fixing and straightening it before I put it on. Like I said, not a big deal but it bugs me!
So there you have it! Whether or not you decide to use a K’tan, I really hope you choose to babywear. Your child will benefit in so many ways, and it’ll make your life much easier and enjoyable!
Have you used a K’tan? What carriers have you used and enjoyed?