7 Reasons Moms are Babywearing (from Supermodels to the Mom-Next-Door)

When my little girl was a few months old, she would only sleep in her sling.  She needed the sense of familiarity that being so close to her mommy provided; to hear my heartbeat, to feel the warmth of my skin and to relax to the rhythmical movements of real life.

When wrapped against me, she would settle with the gentlest of rocking, a little swaying or even just a potter around the house.  And so, in a plain brown wrap, she nestled into my chest.  For us, this practise was simply a nameless necessity.  Back then, I didn’t even know that babywearing was a ‘thing’.

Now, 5 years later and ahead of the arrival of my second baby, I have more than maternal intuition alone convincing me to continue along this well-trodden pathway of carrying our little ones.  And I’m not alone, since the babywearing industry has more than quadrupled in that timeframe.  Each and every month, more and more wraps, slings and carriers are launched into this competitive market, many of which selling out within minutes.

And far from simple block brown stretch fabric, the sheer luxury of materials and designs now available wouldn't seem out of place splashed across the pages of Vogue.  In fact, high-end slings such as Artipoppe have actually already graced those elusive pages, wrapped around the babies of supermodels...it seems that slings are just as much a fashion statement as they are a practical component of our parenting toolkits.

Source: @elite_amsterdam, Twitter

One thing is certain; babywearing fever has arrived.  Yet there is so much more to this art form than beautiful fabrics alone.

Here are 7 of the top reasons that moms are wearing their babies, from supermodels to the mom-next-door...because the practise of babywearing is all-inclusive...
    1.  Babies that are worn are happier.  Evidence suggests that carrying our babies is directly correlated to decreased crying and fussing.
    2.  Babywearing helps meet an infant’s physical needs.  Scientists are linking the gentle movement that babies experience during babywearing to improvements in breathing, growth, physiological regulation and motor development (read more in Sears' book, The Attachment Parenting Book : A Commonsense Guide to Understanding and Nurturing Your Baby.)  To wear our babies also encourages increased feeding frequency and heightened contentment. 
    3.  Babywearing helps meet a child’s emotional needs.  Wearing our babies provides the comfort and security needed to help foster healthy attachment relationships.
    4.  Babywearing is beautiful.  It might sound clichéd, but it’s true.  The sheer intricacy and detailing of the fabrics available, alongside the tenderness of a mother’s love as she carefully wraps her precious baby to her own miraculous body highlights a raw, nurturing kind of beauty that this world needs to see more of.  Because motherhood and beauty should go hand in hand.  Whether that's the everyday 'real life' beauty that exists beneath burp cloths and maternity pants, or the ‘media-ready’ images of beauty that grace our screens and take our breath away...

We are translating age-old traditions into a fashion and lifestyle statement…We believe that mothers can feel more confident if they are carrying their babies close and safe in a loving way and remain stylish while doing so.

(Courtesy of Anna van den Bogert, founder of Artipoppe.)

    5.  Babywearing increases bonding.  Babies that are involved in their caregiver’s activities are taking the role of passive observers.  In this role, babies are able to snuggle into mom and focus on her familiar scent and heartbeat, or take note of the outside environment from a safe, secure and attached vantage point.

    6.  Babywearing helps babies learn.  Carrying our children increases the amount of time they spend in the state of quiet alertness.  This is the behavioral state in which a baby is best able to interact with his or her environment and has even been referred to as the “optimal state of learning for a baby.

    7.  Babywearing gives us more freedom to explore.  Trails that would leave a stroller stuck in the mud (literally) are more accessible to explore when baby is strapped safely to your back, or when little toddler legs get tired half way along the route.

My due date is fast approaching and with it, comes a million uncertainties.  Yet one thing is clear in my mind.  I will wear my son.  I will wrap him in cloth and trust in this age-old practise that is now being supported by science, common sense and fashion.  And while I may not be 'Vogue-ready', I'll honour every beautiful extra inch and glistening tiger stripe as I carefully position my newborn against my body.  Because whether they are worn during muddy hikes or through glamorous photo shoots, our babies only care about one thing: being close to mama.

Related articles:

If you'd like to receive new posts from Mama Bean Parenting straight to your inbox, just click here