Manduca front, hip and back carrier review

Our rating 
4.3 out of 5 star rating 4.3
User rating
£99.00 RRP
manduca-front-hip-and-back-carrier_24526

In a nutshell

A comfortable and supportive baby carrier that will last from birth to pre-school age, once you've practiced the carrying positions.
Comfort for baby
5.0 out of 5 rating 5.0
Comfort for you
5.0 out of 5 rating 5.0
Ease of use
3.0 out of 5 rating 3.0
Design
4.0 out of 5 rating 4.0
Sturdiness
5.0 out of 5 rating 5.0
Worth the money
4.0 out of 5 rating 4.0
Pros: Comfortable for parent and baby, orthopaedically correct carrying position, easy to use in front carrying position, unisex design
Cons: Hip and back carrying positions tricky to master, sunshade encloses baby too much
Skip to view product specifications
The Manduca front, hip and back carrier is a fantastic all-rounder that will see you through from birth to pre-school age, although some of the carrying positions take time to master.

The Manduca carrier is a soft, structured baby carrier that can be used from newborn (3.5kg/7lb 7oz) to around 4 years (20kg/44lb), with three carrying positions: front, hip and back. There’s a newborn insert for tiny babies, and a zip-away extending panel so it will grow with your child.

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The Manduca carrier features a wide, ergonomic waistband and adjustable padded shoulder straps so your baby’s weight is distributed evenly, making it comfortable to wear. It’s also comfy for your baby or toddler, carrying her in an orthopaedically correct position. It has a 3-point waist buckle that can only be opened with two hands, and the buckles are also secured by elastic webbing to protect your baby if one accidentally came undone.

The integrated sunshade doubles as a head support if your baby nods off, and the carrier is lined with organic cotton. It’s available in four colours, plus four limited-edition prints, from £99.

What we love

I’m a big fan of slings and baby carriers, and the Manduca is one of the best I’ve tried. The comfort is unbeatable – the wide waistband and padded shoulder straps take 5-month-old Katie’s weight, and even after an hour’s wear, I don’t notice any strain.

In the front-carrying position, the Manduca is really easy to use. It’s much like putting a rucksack on your front. The buckles fasten easily and the shoulder straps are simple to adjust. Katie seems calm and happy in the Manduca, and while she’s too small for the back-carrying position (suitable from 8kg/17lb), it looks like a great way to carry a toddler, piggyback-style.

Although the Manduca isn’t cheap, it justifies its price tag. Not only will it last for up to four years, but it’s also ideal on occasions where using a buggy is difficult, such as on public transport. The unisex design and colours will appeal to dads, too.

What to watch out for

While using the Manduca on my front is a breeze, I found it hard to get Katie into the hip-carrying position without help. The back-carrying position also looks tricky to master, as you have to first sit your baby on your front and then shuffle her round to your back, although no doubt this would be easier with a toddler who could hop onto your back herself.

My only other real gripe was with the in-built head support and sunshade. While it would be useful if Katie was napping, it’s too enclosed when she’s awake, and she doesn’t like not being able to see. On sunny days, I preferred to put a sunhat on her. She also has a tendency to chew the shoulder strap when I’m carrying her.

Who is the Manduca front, hip and back carrier best for?

Mums and dads after a comfortable, supportive and easy-to-use carrier that will last from birth to pre-school age.

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MadeForMums verdict

The Manduca front, hip and back carrier is a brilliant buy that will stand the test of time. Comfortable and sturdy, it’s a pleasure to wear, and your baby will enjoy it too. Some of the carrying positions take practice, but it’s the perfect alternative to a buggy and has dad-appeal too.

Product Specifications

Product

Brand Manduca
Model front, hip and back carrier
Price £99.00

Suitable for

Child age (approx) Birth to 4 years
Child weight 3.5kg to 20kg

Features

Washing instructions Machine washable
Fastening Buckles/clips
Number of carrying positions 3
Features
  • Ergonomic waist belt
  • Padded straps
  • Two-handed unclasping action for safety
  • Organic cotton lining
  • Three carrying positions

Accessories

Head hugger Yes
Optional extras Fumbee: organic cotton shoulder strap protector; Manduca front pouch for carrying essentials