Fullbuckle, Halfbuckle, Mei Tai, Which Baby Carrier Is Right For Me?

Baby carriers are a great alternative to a stroller and your baby can explore the world with you at eye level.

Babies also love to be carried, so you can combine the beautiful with the practical with a Mei Tai, Fullbuckle or Halfbuckle baby carrier.

And that brings us to the topic, there are some different carrying systems that are basically relatively similar but still have a few crucial differences.

Therefore, in this article you will learn what differences there are between the Mei Tai, Fullbuckle and Halfbuckle carrier systems, what you should consider when choosing and what is important if you want to use the baby carrier with your newborn.

The basics of baby carriers

If you look around the baby carriers, you’ll notice that there are two main sizes.

On the one hand there is the baby-size carrier, which you can use from birth up to a weight of about 15 kilograms, and the toddler-size, which is designed up to 30 kilograms or even more.

Common advantages

No matter which carry system you choose, there are a few basic advantages that every baby carrier will bring you.

To give you just a brief impression, here are five of the many advantages:

  • You are incredibly flexible and mobile with your baby
  • The physical proximity soothes and relieves stomach ache
  • Carrying promotes your child’s development
  • You always have both hands free

If these five advantages have not convinced you yet, you will find my great guide with all the advantages of the baby carrier under the following link .

What you should always be aware of

There are three things to keep in mind when purchasing a baby carrier.

For one thing, you shouldn’t be lured by supposed test winners. Baby carriers are very individual products and every mom, dad and baby is different. That makes it impossible for there to be one stretcher for everyone.

See what suits you and your child.

If you are looking for a baby carrier for your newborn, and that is the second point, make sure that the bar, i.e. the part on which the baby sits, is adjustable. A good spread-squat position can only be ensured with an adjustable bar, and this is important in order not to damage your baby’s hips.

Note: A correct spread-squat position is even good for the development of the hips and can replace spreading pants.

The third important point concerns the back of the stretcher and your child. Newborns need a stretcher made of soft cloth so that they can curl up properly in the stretcher and create a rounded back.

A heavily padded stretcher that pushes your child into an upright position with a straight back is only recommended from the age of sitting. Before this, the back can be damaged.

Mei Tai baby carriers

The Mei Tai is the perfect carrying system for you if you actually want to use a sling but want to avoid the cumbersome tying.

The baby carrier, which comes from Asia, consists of a soft and almost rectangular back part.

The hip belt is usually padded and consists of two long straps that are placed around the waist and then knotted.

As well as the hip belt, the long shoulder straps are also made of cloth and are very long to be crossed on the back and then knotted under the child. In some cases, the straps are so long that they can be passed under the baby’s bottom and then tied behind the back.

From when and until when can the Mei Tai be used?

Thanks to the soft back part, which allows a round baby back, the Mei Tai can be used from birth.

When using it it is called Open End, because a Mei Tai can be used until the end of the wearing time, as long as there are no restrictions from the manufacturer. Some manufacturers offer against an age period in which the stretcher can be used. However, it is better to pay attention to the from-to information using body height or weight.

Children grow too differently to be tied to age as to when a stretcher can be used.

Note: From around 15 kilograms of your child’s weight, you should switch to a Mei Tai in the size of toddlers. Here, too, the manufacturer’s instructions must be observed.

Advantages of the Mei Tai at a glance

Due to the long straps and the long hip belt, the Mei Tai has some important advantages over the other models …

  • It is easy to put on and there is no need for complicated wrapping techniques
  • Flexible to adapt to child and carrier or different carriers
  • Enables the ergonomic spread-squat position and a rounded back for the child
  • Can be used from birth
  • You can carry it on your stomach or your back
  • Many different sizes and models
  • Can be folded up compactly and taken with you without much effort

The long straps and the hip belt, of course, have an important disadvantage: you tend to drag around on the floor when putting it on, especially outside you have to be a little careful.

Mei Tai recommendations

There are many good Mei Tai carriers and you are welcome to go looking for them yourself. As a guide, here are my three top recommendations.

Fidella Fly Tai

The Fly Tai is a classic among the Mei Tai baby carriers and its padded, fan-out shoulder straps make it more than comfortable. The Fly Tai can be used as a front or back carrier, if you want you can also use it on the side.

Hoppediz Hop Tye

Like all Mei Tai carriers, the Hop Tye is a combination of a sling and a baby carrier and can be ideally adapted thanks to the straps with which it is tied. If you want a carrier for your stomach and back at a fair price, then the Hop Tye is a good tip.

Didymos DidyTai

Quick and easy to put on, the DidyTai allows all carrying positions from the stomach to the side and back to the back. The diagonally elastic sling fabric offers a good hold and at the same time a lot of comfort for you and your baby.

Halfbuckle baby carriers

If the long waist straps are nothing to you and you would rather have a more comfortable solution, then the so-called halfbuckle baby carriers might be just right for you.

The base is basically a Mei Tai stretcher with the same rectangular back section, which is ideally made of sling fabric. Halfbuckle carriers are also often called half-buckle carriers and the difference quickly becomes clear.

In contrast to the Mei Tai, the hip belt no longer consists of long lengths of fabric that have to be knotted, but is significantly shorter and provided with a buckle or a wide Velcro fastener.

The hip belt, which is often stable, can be adjusted a little tighter thanks to the buckle or the Velcro fastener and takes more pressure off the shoulders as the child ages.

From when and until when can the Halfbuckle baby carrier be used?

As long as the stretcher has a soft back and the child can be bagged easily, i.e. has a nice, round back, the Halfbuckle can be used from birth without further ado.

Of course, the bar should be adjusted accordingly so that the mandatory spread-squat position is taken by your child.

As with the Mai Tei carriers, the Halfbuckle is available in different sizes. The baby-size sizes are suitable for children up to around 15 kilograms, after which it is worth switching to a toddler size, which can then be used until the end of the gestation period.

This rule of thumb basically applies to all baby carriers, but you should always take a look at the size and weight information of the respective manufacturer and if just to be sure.

Advantages of the Halfbuckle baby carrier

The difference with the Halfbuckle is the fixed waist belt, which once adjusted no longer needs to be tied, but it takes a moment longer when the carrier changes.

Otherwise, a halfbuckle stretcher offers the same advantages as a Mei Tai.

  • It is easy to put on and there is no need for complicated wrapping techniques
  • Flexible to adapt to child and carrier or different carriers
  • Enables the ergonomic spread-squat position and a rounded back for the child
  • Can be used from birth
  • Fixed hip belt relieves the wearer’s shoulders
  • Ties more tightly around the stomach
  • You can carry it on your stomach or your back
  • Many different sizes and models
  • Can be folded up compactly and taken with you without much effort

Like the Mei Tai, the Halfbuckle stretchers have a small disadvantage, the very long straps that can quickly drag on the floor when you put them on. With a bit of caution, this is not a major problem.

Halfbuckle recommendations

Like every carrying system, the Halfbuckle also offers a large number of carriers, these are my three favorites.

Kokadi Tai Tai

Our all-time favorite, the Kokadi Tai Tai, is super easy and quick to put on. The waist belt with buckle makes it super secure and comes in three different sizes.

Emaibaby Emaitai

Emaibaby carriers are still an insider tip, although they have so many great features. For example, it grows steplessly with you and can always be perfectly adapted to your baby. In addition, it can be used from birth and you can use it up to a child’s body weight of 15 kg.

Hoppediz Bondolino

It is hardly faster or easier than with the Bondolino. In contrast to many other Halfbuckles, this stretcher does not have a buckle, but an extra wide Velcro fastener and don’t worry, the thing is really tight.

Before I forget, I have one more tip and that is the 👉 BuzziTai . It’s super comfortable to wear, that’s for sure, otherwise I wouldn’t recommend it. The highlight, however, is that it can be used as a halfbuckle and also as a fullbuckle. So if you can’t choose between the two systems, you don’t have to.

Fullbuckle baby carriers

Last but not the least is the fullbuckle baby carrier, which basically also has a Mei Tai basic shape, i.e. the rectangular back part and is made of cloth, but no longer has long straps to tie.

The fullbuckle carrier is also often referred to as a full buckle carrier and is probably the most popular form of baby carrier.

Note: We also thought at the beginning and even if we like to use our fullbuckle carriers regularly, our favorite is the halfbuckle.

The shoulder straps, which are often wide and padded like a backpack, are adjusted with buckles and straps, as is the hip belt.

No long lengths of fabric, no unwinding and binding, but it takes a lot longer to adjust the various buckles and straps to a new carrier. However, if only one person is carrying the stretcher, the fullbuckle has the advantage that it is immediately ready for use if it has been preset.

From when and until when can the fullbuckle baby carrier be used?

As long as the carrier has a soft back made of cloth and an adjustable bar, a fullbuckle baby carrier can also be used from birth.

As with the other models, it is important to ensure a correct spread-squat position such as a well-battered, i.e. rounded back.

Since the basic form of fullbuckle baby carriers is the same for both carrier systems and only the number of buckles for closing changes, the same rules apply.

Fullbuckle carriers in a baby size can be used from birth up to a body weight of about 15 kilograms, then a larger toddler size should be used.

Precise information can always be found in the manufacturer’s instructions.

Advantages of the fullbuckle carrier

Probably the most important difference to the original form, the Mai Tei, is that the wider straps and straps distribute the child’s weight better and relieve the shoulders so that the main weight can be carried on the hips.

This can be a significant advantage, especially on long tours or when the child is heavier. Here again the most important advantages of the fullbuckle.

  • It is easy to put on and there is no need for complicated wrapping techniques
  • Can be flexibly adapted to the child and the carrier
  • Enables the ergonomic spread-squat position and a rounded back for the child
  • Can be used from birth
  • Fixed hip belt and shoulder straps relieve the wearer’s shoulders
  • Ties more tightly around the stomach
  • You can carry it on your stomach or your back
  • Many different sizes and models
  • Can be folded up compactly and taken with you without much effort

Fullbuckle recommendations

Men in particular like to use the backpack-like fullbuckle carriers, so if your man wants to carry them too, here are my recommendations.

Fidella Fusion

Your baby is quickly put on and safely packed in the Fidella Fusion. The fullbuckle carrier can be used as a front carrier and also as a back carrier and of course completely dispenses with long straps, but uses buckles.

Kokadi flip

After the Tai Tai, the flip is our most frequently used stretcher and of course this stretcher also dispenses with the long straps, but works more like a backpack that can also be carried in the front. You can find more about the Kokadi Flip in the linked review.

Emaibaby baby carrier

Emaibaby’s patented system gives you and your baby the comfort and convenience of a sling and the security of a buckled buckle.

Not every carrier is suitable for newborns

Even if the advertising and sales arguments of the manufacturers want us to believe that not all baby carriers are suitable for the smallest of the little ones.

A soft back and an adjustable bridge are the basic requirements for a baby carrier that should be used from birth. Some carriers have a fixed bar and a heavily padded back, and as comfortable as it is for the parents to carry, this position is anything but healthy for the baby.

The point here is not to make good and popular baby carriers bad (that’s why I don’t mention any brands here) but they are really only suitable when the child has reached the age of sitting and has enough torso stability.

Also the often and gladly advertised newborn inserts do not make the carriers a carrier that is suitable for newborns.

From birth to sitting age, it is better to use a Mai Tei, Halfbuckle or Fullbuckle, which is explicitly suitable for newborns (see recommendations) and, as soon as the child can sit freely, switch to a stretcher with a fixed bar and back section, if you can want.

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