If you want to keep your baby close and are keen to try babywearing, a baby sling or wrap may be the best choice for you. As an alternative to baby carriers, they appeal to parents who prefer a way to carry their baby that’s a little less structured than a carrier, as they don’t use clips or buckles.


Slings and wraps use soft, usually stretchy, fabric that fits to the shape of your baby’s body and they can often be used for babies from newborn right up to toddler years. They are also ideal for both parents of all shapes and sizes, as they are adjusted to your body as you put them on.

We've spoken to sling and carrier expert Hannah Wallace, the owner of Wear My Baby, one of the UK’s leading baby carrier shops and advice service. She's outlined everything you need to know before choosing your sling or wrap, as well as how to choose the best one for you and how to use one safely.

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Best baby slings and wraps at a glance

  • Best wrap for easy cleaning: Close Caboo Baby Carrier, £77
  • Best warp for making a statement: Joy & Joe Rainbow Stretchy Wrap, £38
  • Best wrap for multiple children: Lifft Stretchy Wrap, £39.95
  • Best sling with supportive shoulder straps: AmaWrap Baby Sling, from £39.99
  • Best budget wrap: Izmi Essential Wrap, from £34.99
  • Best eco-friendly sling: Freerider Co. Eucalyptus Baby Sling, £58
  • Best wrap for hot weather: Ergobaby Aura Baby Wrap, £49.90
  • Best wrap for durability: Tag Togs Sa-Be Stretchy Wrap, from £34
  • Best lightweight wrap: We Made Me Flow, £45
  • Best wrap for upright breastfeeding: Bobo Serenity Bamboo, £48
  • Best ready-to-wear wrap: K'Tan Breeze Baby Carrier, £54.99

Why should I use a baby wrap?

Hannah describes the reasons why baby wraps and slings are a great choice.

“They’re incredibly practical – you have your hands free and a baby sling takes up far less room than a stroller. Plus, there's no upper limit to how many hours a day you can carry your baby, so long as they’re safely fitted in the carrier and their airways are protected (see the TICKS guidelines, below).

They can be comfier than baby carriers – though you can wear them for trips outside, the soft, stretchy fabric is ultra-comfy and there are no buckles or clips to dig in, so they are comfortable case for wearing them around the house.

A well-fitted baby wrap can help postnatal recovery – wearing your baby helps with bonding, as it promotes the flow Oxytocin (the ‘love hormone’) and can help alleviate the symptoms of postnatal depression. They can also gradually increase your strength and fitness after the birth, as you carry your growing baby.

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Babies feel happy and settled in baby wraps and slings – your newborn will feel calmed and comforted by your body’s movements and the sound of your heartbeat. It’s good for their physical, cognitive and emotional development too, as they’re able to engage with you and with the world around them. Being held upright is also great for their digestion, helps avoid colic and wind and has many of the same benefits as tummy time.

They're designed to be accommodating for different sizes – There's a common misconception that wraps are better suited to women but I’ve fitted them to thousands of men who love them and find them super comfy. You can even use them with twins!”

What to remember when using a baby wrap or sling

Hannah says:

“Baby wraps and slings can be used from day one – your baby can literally go from womb to wrap. Have a practice tying it (with a doll or teddy) before your baby arrives, then pop it into your hospital bag. Though they may look tricky to begin with, it’s easy once you’ve had a few practise tries.

Stretchy wraps can be pre-tied – tie one on at the start of the day and leave it on, like a piece of clothing. Then just pop your baby in and out as needed. Easy!

Baby wraps and slings are ideal for the first few months – though they are often safety tested to be able to carry a toddler, realistically once you baby gets heavier, parents tend to move on to a baby carrier that offers multiple carrying positions (parent facing, outwards facing, back and hip carrying).

You may need more than one carrier – a soft wrap for the early months, especially around the house, then a more long-lasting, multi-position carrier to last up to toddler years.

How to wear a baby wrap safely?

Babies should always be carried upright – so that their airways are open and clear. Babies should never be carried in a lying down, ‘cradle’ position.

Make sure it is well tightened – This is so that your baby cannot slump inside it. If your baby carrier is too big or too loose, your baby’s chin can drop down onto their chest, which could compromise their airways.

Always make sure you can see your baby’s face – Never cover your baby’s face with any fabric. Babies should be positioned high up on your chest and be close enough for you to easily kiss the top of their head without craning your neck.

Be sure not to overheat your baby – As a rough rule of thumb when carrying, your body counts as one layer of clothing, the baby wrap is at least one more and if you’re in a warm place that’s a third – so make sure they’re not overdressed.

Remember the T.I.C.K.S guidelines – This is a handy reminder of what to check for when using a baby carrier (Tight, In view at all times, Close enough to kiss, Keep chin off the chest, Supported back).

Here's is our pick of the best slings and wraps to buy in 2022

1. Close Caboo Baby Carrier, £77

– Best for easy cleaning

Collage of mother holding baby in the close caboo baby carrier, next to product shot of the carrier

Suitable from: birth to 2-3 years (3kg to 14.2kg) | Carrying positions: 3, front parent-facing, hip and back | Machine washable: Yes | Material: 100% organic cotton | | Award: MadeForMums Gold best wrap

The Caboo is a stretchy-hybrid sling with the closeness of a wrap and the structure of a ring-sling. If you feel daunted by a long fabric wrap, then the Close Caboo might fit the bill. Its material is pre-sewn into a cross at the back and adjusted at the sides with two sets of rings, so it’s as easy as putting on a t-shirt, then pulling to fit. It has very softly padded, wide straps that help distribute your baby’s weight across your torso.

MFM reviewer Sarah, mum of one, liked the position of her baby while using the sling. She explained, “It holds your baby high up on your chest, which gives her a sense of security without restricting your movements and provides lumbar support for you and your little one.”

The Close Caboo offers good value with three carrying positions compared with the similarly priced AmaWrap that just has one position. It’s machine washable and, unlike most stretchy wraps, can be tumble dried – a real bonus if you need it cleaned in a hurry. It holds your baby’s legs in the hip-health approved frog leg shape.

Parent tester Lianne tested this with her newborn and said: “If you want a super stylish carrier that you can wear not only around the house and out to the shops but sitting on the sofa, having a cuddle with your hands free - then get a Close Caboo. It's ideal for those early bonding months with your little one.” Read our full MFM review of xxxx

Pros: can be tumble dried occasionally, supportive, three carrying positions, easy for beginners
Cons: ring mechanisms can be uncomfortable

Read our full MadeForMums review of Close Caboo Baby Carrier here

Available from: Close Parent and Amazon

2. Joy & Joe Rainbow Stretchy Wrap Bamboo, £38

– Best for making a statement

Collage of Joy & Joe Rainbow Stretchy Wrap Bamboo next to picture of woman using it

Suitable from: birth to 3 years (16kg) | Carrying positions: 1, front parent-facing, | Machine washable: Yes | Material: 100% organic cotton or bamboo and cotton | Award: MadeForMums Silver best wrap

This brightly coloured rainbow stretch wrap is a real eye-catcher and it comes with an adorable matching hat, plus storage bag, too. It’s ideal for newborns and is very soft, with a choice of either organic cotton or a bamboo/cotton mix fabrics. Sling expert Katy Blundell loved the bright, vibrant colours, saying: “It felt well-made with good quality stitching and a lovely amount of stretch.” The material is machine washable and feels durable. As it is a wrap rather than a structured sling it will take a bit of practice to get it right, although it does come with video instructions to help. It's great choice for experienced baby wearers who want something that will really make a statement. Parent tester Kayleigh, who tested this with her two-month-old said: “So easy to wash, no bobbling or shrinkage and air dries very quickly on a clothes horse! It’s lovely material and looks gorgeous."

MadeForMums’ consumer editor Gemma Cartwright says “A very adorable take on the classic sling wrap. Having been shown how to fit it by our expert judge it seemed secure, comfortable and relatively easy to fit. I love the bright rainbow print and the matching bag and hat are adorable too. Bamboo and cotton fabric should keep a baby nice and cool and it definitely works for bonding and early days skin to skin. Although any sling is a learning curve in terms of fit, once mastered this is a real winner."

Read our full MadeForMums review of Joy & Joe Rainbow Stretchy Wrap Bamboo here

Available from: Joy & Joe

3. Lifft Stretchy Wrap, £39.95

– Best for multiple children

A collage of both a man and woman using the lifft stretchy wrap

Suitable from: birth to 2-3 years (2.5kg to 15kg) | Carrying positions: 1, front parent-facing | Machine washable: Yes | Material: 94% cotton, 6% elastane | Award: MadeForMums Bronze, best wrap 2022

The Lifft Stretchy Wrap is called stretchy for a reason – the cotton material has a two-way stretch, which helps make it supportive and snug. There’s a lot of fabric, which means it can be used with babies, twins and toddlers up to around three years old. “I love that I’m able to fit my newborn twins in this sling, as well as my chunky toddler,” says home tester Amy, mum of three (although, not all three at the same time!).

Like many wraps, if you’ve not used one before it may take a little bit of practice to get the knack, although our home testers and Awards judge and sling expert Hannah Wallace praised its easy-to-follow picture instructions. “There were step-by-step photos to show you how to put the wrap around your body and then how to put your child in,” said home tester Leanne, mum of two.

Scoring well in the ‘comfort for baby’ section of the MFM Awards 2022, the Lifft Stretchy Wrap was praised for being easy to put on, well made and featuring strong, supportive but stretchy material. This wrap gets bonus points for being designed by a babywearing consultant and ethically manufactured in Yorkshire.

Pros: stretchy, supportive for twins and toddlers, easy to follow instructions
Cons: excess material

Read our full MadeForMums review of Lifft Stretchy Wrap here

Available from:Lifft and Amazon

4. AmaWrap Baby Sling, from £39.99

– Best for supportive shoulder straps

A collage of two different people using the amawrap baby sling

Suitable from: birth to 2-3 years (3.5kg to 15kg) | Carrying positions: 1, front parent-facing | Machine washable: Yes | Material: 100% cotton

Manufactured in the UK, AmaWrap slings are used in UK hospitals to help premature babies to receive ‘kangaroo care’. The brand offers 12 different colours and prints, giving parents a choice of great colour schemes and designs compared with the plain block colours from many other brands.

MFM reviewer, Zoe, mum of one, was able to breastfeed while wearing the sling and liked that the: “Wide shoulder straps and head cover make it simple to do so discreetly.”

The one-way stretch can make it trickier to master at first but that means it’s less prone to sagging than the two-way Lifft Stretchy Wrap. There’s a matching bag for storage which is great, although unlike the Ergobaby Aura, it’s separate from the wrap so it doesn’t add bulk to the sling itself.

Zoe added: “I’d definitely recommend this product to those who have babies who don’t like to be put down, or who want a more flexible and comfortable way to carry their child.”

Pros: separate carry case, good colour and pattern choice, wide shoulder straps
Cons: not super stretchy

Read our full MadeForMums review of AmaWrap Baby Sling here

Available from: Amazon and AmaWrap

5. Izmi Essential Wrap, from £34.99

– Best budget wrap

A collage of a woman wearing the Izmi Essential Wrap next to a product shot

Suitable from: birth to around 6 months (2.3kg to 9kg) | Carrying positions: 2, front and hip | Machine washable: Yes | Material: 95% cotton, 5% elastane | Award:Gold – Sling/wrap, MadeForMums Awards 2021

Designed by British mum-of-two and experienced sling librarian Emily Williamson, the Izmi Essential Wrap is almost identical to the popular Izmi Baby Wrap, but it is made from 95% cotton rather than bamboo, making it slightly more affordable. In fact MFM Awards judge and sling expert, Hannah Wallace, calls it "THE quality budget wrap".

What made this wrap stand out with our home testers is the fact that it suits a variety of body shapes and sizes. They also liked the clear instructions, as highlighted by tester Katherine, mum of one, who said, “Safety and wrapping tips are shared in the box meaning those who haven't wrapped before, have quick access to helpful information.”

It has two carrying positions, front and hip, and the cotton material is super soft and breathable to wear. "The Izmi is very durable and a great fit," said parent tester Maidaa, mum of one. "Comfy for the skin and comfy for my son too.” However, it only comes in just two shades of grey, while the brand's Baby Wrap has a wider choice of colours.

Pros: good value, clear instructions, soft cotton material
Cons: very limited colour choice

Read our full MadeForMums review of Izmi Essential Wrap here

Available from: Jojo Maman Bebe, Kiddies Kingdom and Wear My Baby

6. Freerider Co. Eucalyptus Baby Sling, £58

– Best eco-friendly sling

A collage of two different women wearing the Freerider Co. Eucalyptus Baby Sling

Suitable from: birth to around 18 months (3.6kg to 13.6kg) | Carrying positions: 1, front parent-facing | Machine washable: Yes | Material: 100% Tencel

For parents wishing to shop sustainably, the Freerider Co. Eucalyptus Baby Sling is made from ethical, sustainable Tencel materials that are produced by extracting wood pulp from forests and eco-conscious tree farms. Parent tester Jen, mum of one, explained why she loved this sling: “It aligns with the values I hope to achieve as a new mum: fashionable, ethical, practical, beneficial for my baby and ergonomic.”

As with most stretchy slings, it is super-comfortable for newborns and our home testers liked how light and soft the Tencel material is. Parent tester Ella, mum of one, found the sling useful for wearing around the house. She said: “My baby feels well-supported, including his leg positioning and I find it very comfortable as long as you maintain good posture.”

The thin, breathable material absorbs 70% more moisture than cotton, according to Freerider Co. However, our awards judge and sling expert Hannah Wallace felt it overpromised on the maximum weight range of 13.6kg and suggested it'd be more comfortable for both mum and baby up to around 7kg.

Pros: eco-friendly, super-soft material, lightweight
Cons: pricey

Available from: Freerider Co., Natural Baby Shower and Wear My Baby

7. Ergobaby Aura Baby Wrap, £49.90

– Best for hot weather

A woman wearing the Ergobaby Aura Baby Wrap with a baby inside

Suitable from: birth to 2 years (3.6kg to 11.3kg) | Carrying positions: 4, front and hip | Machine washable: Yes | Material: 100% natural viscose

This really lightweight viscose fabric made from eucalyptus and acacia makes the Aura a good choice for use in the summer, or for parents who get hot easily. It’s one of the few wraps to come with its own inbuilt storage bag, a real bonus for stashing under the pushchair when you’re out and about, or if your toddler needs a rest in the buggy and baby can go into the sling.

As with several of the baby wraps, the five metre long Aura can be worn by most body types. MadeForMums reviewer Meena, mum of three, explained: “At just over 5ft tall, I end up with masses of extra fabric, which you just tie around your waist. It was also big enough and stylish enough for my husband to rock it for a trip to the park.”

The Aura comes with clear, illustrated instructions and links to online how-to videos. “I found watching the videos the best way to learn how to use this style of wrap,” said Meena. It also has a handy label and leading-edge stitching to help make tying a breeze.

“A wonderfully lightweight and stylish baby wrap that is easy to master. It supports both carrier and carried very well and is easy to clean,” added Meena.

Pros: lightweight, suits all body types, integrated pocket, variety of carry positions
Cons: high minimum newborn weight

Read our full MadeForMums review of Ergobaby Aura Baby Wrap here

Available from: John Lewis, Wear My Baby and Ergobaby

8. Tag Togs Sa-Be Stretchy Wrap, from £34

– Best for durability

Tag Togs Sa-Be Stretchy Wrap

Suitable from: birth to 2-3 years (2.5kg to 15kg) | Carrying positions: 1, front parent-facing | Machine washable: Yes | Material: 100% cotton

The handmade Tag Togs Sa-Be Stretchy Wrap was popular with our testers due to its comfort for both parent and baby plus its stability; however, the thick, double-layered material could be hot to wear in warmer weather. “On the first use, my daughter fell pretty much straight to sleep, so I think that speaks for itself that it’s comfortable for her,” said parent tester Bethany, mum of one.

With more than 20 colours to choose from and the option of a single block colour or a two-colour combination, there's sure to be a wrap to suit all tastes. Made from 100% jersey cotton, the sling is: “Really easy to wash,” and hasn’t “overstretched or sagged,” according to Bethany.

While parents need to read the instructions carefully to put on this wrap correctly, it is easy to use with practice according to our testers. As with most stretchy wraps, this is great for newborns but might not offer enough support and stability for toddlers. However, parent tester Matthew, dad of two, commented: “Our baby is particularly large but the Sa-Be makes carrying him comfortable and relatively easy.”

Pros: lots of colour choices, durable material
Cons: bulky and thick material, less supportive for toddlers

Read our full MadeForMums review of Tag Togs Sa-Be Stretchy Wrap here

Available from: Tag Togs

9. We Made Me Flow, £45

– Best lightweight wrap

A collage of a woman wearing the We Made Me Flow baby carrier alongside a studio image of the product

Suitable from: birth to 2-3 years (3.6kg to 15.9kg) | Carrying positions: 1, front parent-facing | Machine washable: Yes | Material: Nylon and spandex

We Made Me Flow lasts up until your baby is around 15kg (as with the AmaWrap and the Lifft). There’s just one carrying position but at 580g compared with an average weight of 800g, the Flow is lighter than many others, making it good to stash under a pushchair or in your changing bag. The mesh fabric is ultra-stretchy and promises to be breathable, although the innovative fabric takes some getting used to. There are clear online video tutorials to help get the best fit.

Comfortable for daily use, the Flow wrap feels durable and should last for more than one child. MadeForMums reviewer Ruth, mum of two, liked how cool the wrap was to wear: “The lightweight mesh fabric means you’re unlikely to get too hot – and the material is capable of self-regulating its temperature, according to We Made Me, to keep your baby cool too.”

The Flow wrap comes in four colours: midnight black, charcoal grey, lavender, and pebble. Ruth added: “Super soft, stretchy and lightweight, this wrap is a great way to carry your baby around and keep your hands free for cooking, running after a toddler or while out for a long walk.”

Pros: lightweight, breathable
Cons: man-made fabric, pricey

Read our full MadeForMums review of We Made Me Flow here

Available from: Amazon and Diono

10. Boba Serenity Bamboo, £42

– Best for upright breastfeeding

A collage of two different women wearing the Boba Serenity Bamboo

Suitable from: birth to 2-3 years (3kg to 16kg) | Carrying positions: 1, front parent-facing | Machine washable: Yes | Material: 68% viscose from bamboo, 25% cotton, 7% spandex

The Serenity Wrap comes in four plain colours and two patterned designs. MadeForMums parent reviewer Alex, mum of two, liked the gender-neutral colour choices and said: “The fabric felt incredibly soft, luxurious and breathable thanks to the moisture-wicking bamboo material. I also liked the colour – Rainforest, a darkish green... this one is particularly versatile and unisex.”

One slight issue our tester found was getting the tension of the material right, so you may need some practice to get used to it. “The fabric is surprisingly stretchy, so even though it would feel tight when I put it on, once we started walking, I often felt my son sliding down too low. And the nature of the wrap meant it was impossible to readjust it without having to take him out,” explained Alex.

The ergonomic design and upright positioning follow the TICKS guidelines and is recognised by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute as a ‘hip-healthy’ product. The wrap is also ideal for breastfeeding mums who want to discreetly feed on the go. “This was a revelation for me, especially as a second-time mum,” said Alex, who added that it was: "Extremely easy, discreet and convenient." However, she also said: “The wrap is designed for breastfeeding in an upright hold only and it’s best done standing up. This may not suit everyone as the latch is different to the standard cradle hold.”

Pros: breathable fabric, allows for upright breastfeeding
Cons: difficult to adjust whilst in use, very stretchy fabric takes getting used to

Read our full MadeForMums review of Boba Serenity Bamboo here

Available from: Amazon and Boba

11. K’Tan Breeze Baby Carrier, £54.99

– Best ready-to-wear wrap

A woman wearing the K’Tan Breeze Baby Carrier

Suitable from: birth to 2-3 years (3kg to 14.2kg) | Carrying positions: 3, front parent-facing or out-facing and hip | Machine washable: Yes | Material: 100% cotton

If the thought of learning how to tie a long fabric wrap fills you with dread, the K’Tan Breeze Baby Carrier might be just what you are looking for. This hybrid sling promises no wrapping or excess fabric – a great feature if you lack the confidence or time to master baby wearing. The double loops of fabric hold baby securely without the need for buckles or ring fasteners, and it’s available in a variety of block colours and patterned designs.

MadeForMums parent reviewer Hayley, mum of one, said: “It’s really simple to put on, as it goes on like a t-shirt. Then all you need to do is position your baby inside one of the loops and secure your baby by following the instructions for each of the six positions.”

The K’Tan comes in different sizes – XS, S, M, L and XL – to ensure the best comfort fit for the adult wearer. But this means different-sized adults can’t share the same wrap, so parents are unlikely to be able to swap. And if your body shape and size changes significantly post-partum, you might not get long-lasting use from it.

Pros: no wrapping or excess fabric, easy to wear, range of sizes
Cons: may not be able to share 1 wrap between different sizes


Available from: JoJo Maman Bebe and Amazon


Sally J HallContributor

Sally J. Hall has been a parenting and health journalist for over 20 years. She is a former Consumer Editor of Parenting & Birth magazine and former Editor of both Bounty (where she launched the Bounty Baby Product Guide) and Emma’s Diary, as well as contributing to many other parenting magazines and websites.