Review: Boba Stretchy Wrap

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After a failed attempt with my first structured carrier (Part 1 here and Part 2 here) I started looking in to babywearing a bit more seriously. I got my google on, delved in to forums, and tried to familiarise myself with all the different styles of carrier and various manufacturers. A popular choice for squishy newborns seemed to be stretchy wraps, the Boba brand in particular. I was pretty happy with this, I did NOT want to have another go with a structured carrier anytime soon, plus I love anything stretchy. Stretchy = comfy! I scoured the Boba website, The Sleep Store, and YouTube until I felt confident I could figure out how to tie it and then ordered my first one in Navy. Cue the courier stalking. One, no, two things you’ll learn about me is that I’m a sucker for navy, and that I’m one of those people who aggressively tracks their online shopping orders until they literally hit the doorstep…

First Impression

It’s soft! The Boba wrap came nicely packaged and it felt soft when I first took it out of the box. It came with a nice clear instruction manual and I was able to put it on and tie it up straight away. The fabric is soft and stretchy, like a nice thick jersey T-shirt. There is quite a lot of material there which could seem overwhelming to a tired, less-than-patient new Mumma but I was committed to the idea of this stretchy wrap and made it work with pretty minimal fuss. If the tails are still too long after tying like the video says then just pass them around your waist once more. This is especially nice for a bit of extra warmth in winter.

Once tied on I faffed around for a bit un-bunching and spreading the rails out before I finally bit the bullet and got Harry to try it out properly. It does feel slightly like being in a straight jacket with free arms at first, but I actually quite liked the ‘locked in’ feeling it gave to my core which still felt a bit loose and rubbery only a couple of weeks after giving birth. So far so good, I like it!

The Trial

I have to admit it was slightly awkward getting Harry in the first time. I was so paranoid that I would get his leg stuck or he’d suddenly wriggle and I’d drop him. I installed the baby over the bed for this first try just to feel a little safer but it wasn’t too bad. It’s actually easier if you stand in front of a mirror so you can keep an eye on little legs and things. The first time is the worst and after that you pick it up and get more confident with the technique. I followed the guide and the video TO THE LETTER and within a couple of minutes Harry was happily bobbing up and down the hallway wrapped to my chest. There were a few minor gripes in the first minute or two until he got used to this crazy new thing, but then it was smooth sailing. He just went to sleep! I figured I was on to a winner here so I went about a few chores and just let him be.

The Verdict

I’m going to do some pros and cons here just to keep it simple. I definitely think a stretchy wrap has a place in a carrier collection, but if you can only get one thing it probably wouldn’t be my first pick. I used mine all the time up until a certain point, after which it has sat in a drawer.

Pros

  • Soft and forgiving material great for snuggling newborns
  • Comfy to wear – no straps or buckles to cut in
  • One size fits all, no need to worry about sizes or changing the straps for each user
  • Heaps of colours and patterns to choose from
  • Easy to wash in case of spills
  • Apparently you can nurse in it. Best recommended for those blessed with a more manageable set of milky mammaries.

Cons

  • Can be tricky to wrap properly – need to learn technique
  • Stretchy fabrics can relax over time – need to tie firmer than you think or you may find baby gradually scootches down your chest and out of the safe position
  • Difficult to tie on the go. Best to put it on at home and just go out with it already set
  • Really only feels best to me for those first few months when baby is still nice and light. I find when Harry got heavier (7+ kts) the fabric was too stretchy and he just kept slipping down.
  • Lots of fabric can take longer to dry in winter
  • Extremely difficult to nurse in if you have larger or droopier breasts. I attempted nursing in the Boba once but found it to be an impossible feat. That was a big fat nope from my G-cup dairy.

Despite the cons I feel like I got my money’s worth out of my Boba Stretchy in just the first 3 months alone. To know I could wrap my bubba up for cuddles and a decent nap was nearly priceless and I used it almost every day. I say nearly priceless because it did actually come with a price and believe it or not it was an affordable one. Under $100 even! If you have a squishy newborn coming in to your life soon then I would definitely recommend a Boba stretchy for those early days, as long as you have some patience to practice the tying technique. It’s really not that bad! Once they hit 3-4+ months and are a bit bigger and sturdier then you may prefer to swap to a soft structured carrier but the Boba can keep going right up to 15kgs. Below are the actual tech specs and a link to buy in NZ. Please note this is not a sponsored or affiliate link in any way. I purchased my first Navy Boba from The Sleep Store with my own money, I simply find they have a great range and some great specials and would like to support them as an NZ retailer.

Image: Boba Stretchy in Navy Boba.com
Boba Stretchy in Navy (www.boba.com)

Boba Specs:

  • Birth to 35 lbs (15kgs) or roughly 0-18 months
  • 2 ergonomic carry positions – newborn and love your baby hold
  • Breastfeeding-friendly
  • 95% French Terry cotton with a touch of Spandex to retain its shape
  • Bamboo fabric also available for warmer weather
  • Four way stretch
  • One size fits all
  • International Hip Dysplasia Institute – Certified Hip Healthy
  • Machine washable, tumble dry on low

You can buy one from The Sleep Store.

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