Tots Bots Papoozle
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The Tots Bots Papoozle was, like many baby slings, designed by parents who couldn’t find what they needed on the market. It’s comfy to wear, long lasting and versatile in the way it can be used and in the way it accommodates different sized wearers.
The team behind the fantastic Tots Bots range of reusable nappies has branched out into the slings market with the Papoozle.
Tots Bots started out when a mum and a dad had their second baby and couldn’t find their ideal cloth nappy on the market, so decided to design their own. The Papoozle was developed for a similar reason: their third baby needed major surgery when he was very tiny, so needed to be held close to mum at all times to keep him happy, comfy and safe. None of the other slings around seemed to quite hit the mark, so Tots Bots combined all the best bits of its favourite slings, and left out all the bits it didn’t like. The result was the Papoozle!
The Papoozle sling consists of a padded waistband that fastens with a buckle and is adjustable to accommodate different waist sizes. There are then two long, soft fabric straps that go over each shoulder, and you pop your baby inside, in whatever position you prefer. It comes with a drawstring carry bag and instruction booklet, and it’s machine washable.
What we love
The instruction booklet that comes with the Papoozle gives great step-by-step instructions on how to use it, and shows you lots of different positions, too. I couldn’t believe how many different ways you can use it – with your baby facing inwards or outwards, upright or laying down, or even on your hip.
The additional belly band offers great extra support for babies who can’t support their heads yet. And the padded waistband distributes the weight across your hips, to take some of the strain off your shoulders. The padding on the shoulders is great, too. I’ve had slings that leave red welts across my shoulders, and this doesn’t happen with Papoozle, no matter how long I used it for.
We use our Tots Bots Papoozle to carry both our toddler and the 8-month-old baby that I look after during the week, and the Papoozle really does the business. It’s also really handy that it packs away so small, and fits into a drawstring carry bag. I often take it out with me on walks, and put it on when my toddler gets tired. This also makes it ideal for holidays and camping trips, especially if you don’t want to take a buggy.
The Papoozle is also good value for money – slings are very expensive and this one is hard-wearing enough to last several children, without a scary price tag.
What to watch out for
The fabric is very soft and stretchy, and I found that one of the straps got a bit overstretched and became slightly longer than the other. This meant that the padding didn’t quite land on my shoulder any more, but it didn’t affect the performance of the sling.
Putting the sling on does take a little bit of getting the hang of, and one downside is that it isn’t recommended as a back carrier – some slings can be used on your back or your front.
Who is the Tots Bots Papoozle sling best for?
Families who want a sling for regular use that will last the distance from baby to toddlerhood
The Papoozle offers all the softness and multiple positions of a wrap carrier, but it also has the extra support of the padded waistband and the ease of use of a buckle fastening. And with its unisex, unfussy styling, dads will be happy to use it, too. While it doesn’t offer a back carrying position, a bit of patience getting the hang of it will let you use it in many different positions.