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>> How to Sling in Cold Weather

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I found it tricky at first, but boy does my baby like it now! When I am out, if he gets tired I just put him in the cradle hold and he goes right to sleep! The sling is also great as it is so small and easy to pack. I will be travelling next week and am definitely taking it with us!!!
—J.E., Vancouver, British Columbia

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 >> How to Sling in Cold Weather

Baby, it's cold outside!

Every year once winter fully gets underway, we get enquiries about how to sling safely in cold weather. Having had a December baby, in a really cold city in Canada, and having taken public transit everywhere and not sitting in a luxuriously warm car all the time, we like to think that we're experts in babywearing and travelling in cold weather.

First off, if you’re concerned about your little one’s condition in this cold, rest assured that slinging keeps him warmer than being in the stroller: see point #3 about body temperature. Not only will you be able to keep baby warmer, but because you’re close at hand, you’ll be able to more easily and more quickly detect if any little body parts are getting numb with cold.

 So in case you missed it the first few times, here is a recap on how to wear your baby in cold weather:

1) First and most important: If you don’t absolutely need to go out in cold weather, don’t.

2) Before slinging, dress in layers. This refers to Baby, as well as you. Remember, you both don't have to be bulky, but have to be warm. Wool, silk, cotton, bamboo, and down are good natural fibres. Fleece (made of polyester) and synthetic, wind-resistant fibres like Gore-Tex are also good choices.

3) Over and under. Once baby is wrapped up warmly, use a layer to wrap over and around baby’s body, but under the slingThink of it as a blanket to wrap around Baby, but placed under the sling. This adds an easily removable layer once you've reached the indoors. Good choices that we’ve used in the past are wool and fleece, or you could use a favourite knitted baby blankie.

4) Tuck them in: most important to keep in mind are extremities like fingers, toes, and nose. If it juts out, it tends to get colder, faster. Tuck them in like little mummies.

5) Face them in. Don’t expose baby’s face and body to the biting wind and snow. When they’re facing you, they’re more sheltered. The Chest Hold and Hip Hold (facing in) are most recommended for cold-weather wearing.

6) Snuggle! Remember, your body temperature is helping to keep Baby warm, and vice versa. Hug, hold, rub Baby's back.

7) Be comfortable! This means:
    A) remember to spread the sling on your shoulder (bunched-up fabric leads to more strain and pain on the shoulder—see           photos above)
    B) see rule #2 about bulkiness
    C) a happy mama or papa = a happy baby. 

We hope that these tips help you to move about in the winter while wearing your baby.

Keep warm, keep safe, and happy slinging!

(Updated: January 2015)