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Babywearing 101: Choosing Between a Ring Sling and a Stretchy Baby Wrap

There's truly nothing better than babywearing and having your little one cuddled close to your heart in the perfect kissing distance. Parents have worn their babies for thousands of years. An act promotes bonding and a sense of well-being for mother and child. If you've decided to use a baby carrier, let's start by saying, great choice! The closeness and comfort you and your baby will feel are beyond compare!

One question you will undoubtedly face is what type of carrier to choose, a ring sling or baby wrap. While there are similarities, there are also differences to consider; let's take a closer look at both, so you can decide which is right for you!

A woman wearing a baby in a ring sling and a woman wearing a baby in a baby wrapWhat Is A Ring Sling?

Just as the name suggests, a ring sling is a long piece of fabric containing two rings at the shoulder, which you can use to create a sling for your baby to sit inside. These safety rings allow you to safely and securely carry your baby without worry since they will not slip or unravel during use. Parents love them for their convenience, simplistic design, and ease of use while out and about. For more information on using a ring sling, check out this excellent article that will tell you everything you need to know!

What Is A Stretchy Baby Wrap?

A stretchy baby wrap carrier is a long piece of fabric with some stretch that you wrap around your body and tie to create a pouch to hold your baby. Many parents love using wraps in the newborn stage as it creates a “womb-like” feeling for their baby. Take advantage of this helpful article to learn more about using a baby wrap carrier!

Now that you know what a ring sling and baby wrap are, let's discuss some of their similarities and differences, which will help you develop a deeper understanding of which one best fits your lifestyle and needs.

  

Mother nursing her newborn in a tan baby wrap and talking with woman wearing her baby in ring sling carrier

The Similarities Between A Ring Sling And A Baby Wrap Carrier

Many similarities between a ring sling and a baby wrap carrier make them both excellent options for parents.

Hands-Free Carrying

A ring sling and a baby wrap allow for hands-free baby carrying, which can be a lifesaver for moms. Simply place your baby inside the carrier, and they will stay safe and secure, resting comfortably on your chest while you work, clean, and run errands.

Comfortable And Soothing

Babies thrive on physical touch, which allows for a powerful bonding experience. Whether you use a ring sling or wrap, you will quickly find that it instantly soothes your little ones, calming them down and helping them drift off to sleep. These carriers are comfortable to wear, evenly distributing your baby's weight and giving those tired arms a break!

Secure

Knowing your baby is safe and secure is of the utmost importance when using a carrier, which is why both ring slings and wraps are so popular. Both provide a secure hold that keeps your baby in place without restricting movement. Since they are adjustable, you can tighten or loosen both wraps to fit your and your baby's unique size and shape, creating a customized fit that gives ultimate peace of mind.

Flexibility

As we stated above, both a ring sling and a baby wrap are adjustable, allowing you to adjust them to fit your body perfectly. This flexibility is perfect for growing babies, allowing you to use your carrier from birth until toddlerhood and ensuring you get the most out of your investment.


Portability

One of the best parts about both carrier options is how portable they are, a necessity for parents! Since they are, in essence, long pieces of fabric, you can quickly and easily fold them up and throw them into a diaper bag, car, stroller, or luggage. They are also lightweight and easy to travel with, making them a perfect option when flying.

 woman wearing a ring sling and woman wearing a baby wrap

The Differences Between A Ring Sling And Baby Wrap Carrier

While there are many similarities between both carrier options, there are some key differences before deciding which one you'd like to use.

The Amount Of Fabric

The first thing you'll notice about a baby wrap and ring sling side by side is how much fabric there is with the wrap. Depending on the size wrap you choose, it will generally contain around six yards of fabric. A ring sling only has about two and a half yards of fabric. This difference in the amount of material is one reason some parents prefer a ring sling, as it is less fabric to maintain/store.

Complexity

A ring sling is an excellent option for parents looking for a more simplistic baby carrier that offers multiple carrying options. With the ring sling, you can simply thread the fabric through the rings and tighten, no muss, no fuss! On the other hand, a baby wrap does have a bit of a learning curve, as figuring out how to tie it can be confusing at first. Since there are so many different ways to carry your baby with a wrap, it will take some trial and error before you get it right, but once you do, wrapping is a breeze!

How Your Baby Is Secured

One of the main differences between a ring sling and a baby wrap carrier is how your baby is secured when being held. For the ring sling, the fabric is “threaded” through a set of two rings, which you can loosen and tighten to create the perfect fit. The fabric is tied around you and your baby on a baby wrap, tying in a knot either at your back or lower abdomen. While the method of securing your little one differs, it's important to note that when done correctly, both carrier methods offer a safe and secure way to hold your baby that you both will enjoy!

hope&plum baby carriers product box

Below are some answers to the most commonly asked questions about ring slings and baby wraps.

Do baby wraps come in different sizes?

We know that parents come in all different shapes and sizes, and we believe baby wraps should too! Our wraps come in two sizes to ensure the perfect fit for all bodies. Our short length is 4.3 yards and great for parents up to a size 10/12 US, while our long length has 5.3 yards and is comfortable for parents up to size 28/30 US!

Do ring slings provide enough support for my baby?

Ring slings provide ample support for even the littlest babies without the unnecessary bulkiness of more ridged carrier options. Your baby will have the necessary support on the neck, back, and hips when fitted correctly to stay safe and comfortable.

Can I use a ring sling and baby wrap for my newborn?

Both ring slings and baby wrap carriers are safe for newborn babies and an excellent way to comfort them as they adjust to the outside world. Since both options provide ample support, even the tiniest babies can benefit from the bond babywearing creates. Whether you're a new parent, learning how to juggle household chores and caring for a newborn, or have one or more children already and need to integrate your newest bundle into your existing routine, a ring sling or baby wrap can save the day!


Which carrier is best for my toddler?

One of the best features of our ring slings and baby wrap carriers is that they hold up to 35 pounds, which means you can carry your toddler! While our baby wraps can support toddlers up to this weight limit, most parents feel comfortable with a maximum weight of 25 pounds, given the stretchy material the carrier is made with.

There is truly nothing better than babywearing and the bond it creates. Whether you choose one of our ring slings or baby wrap carriers, we know you will love the freedom, security, and closeness to your little one they provide!