Ergobaby Omni 360: My Review
Annabelle insisted on keeping her right arm out of the carrier while we took these pictures, but this is obviously not the normal position for baby’s arm! Normally baby’s arm goes under the strap like her left arm is.
When I became a mom of 2, babywearing became about survival and convenience! I nursed Judith for 20 long months, and spent countless hours sitting or laying down to feed her. I knew that would be impossible to do with my second child AND keep up with a toddler at the same time. I never tried nursing Judith in a carrier, but boy do I wish I had! I started nursing Annabelle in our Original Ergobaby when she was a few months old, and I have been able to hike, shop, travel, cook, clean the home, and spend more time playing with Judith because I can feed Annabelle in the Ergobaby. I feel so much more confident and free, and that is priceless to me! Right now there are hundreds of options for babywearing out there. Why do I like Ergobaby so much? I think of it this way – it’s ergonomic so my baby’s hips will be safe, comfortable for me to wear for hours, structured and secure for our hiking adventures, easy to use (because who needs to figure out one more complicated piece of baby gear?), and durable so I can use it every day AND hang on to it to use again with our next baby. If you’re looking for those features too, the Omni 360 will be a great fit for you!
As a mom whose baby’s favorite way to nap is cuddling with me, I can’t tell you how excited I am about using Ergobaby’s new Omni 360! Annebelle’s always been a cuddle bug, but when separation anxiety set in and she wanted to be close to me at all times, she really napped best in a carrier. This kept my hands free to clean, hike, or play with Judi while Belle napped. While she’s better at napping in her crib now, she still falls asleep very easily while being worn. My most used carrier is my Ergobaby Original, which I blogged about last year. I’ve made so many great memories with both my girls while wearing them in that carrier (climbing rocks in Canada with Judith, hiking among alligators here in Florida with Annabelle…good times!). Many nights dinner would have never gotten on the table without our Ergobaby – many nights Belle wanted to nap while I was cooking! (It’s not recommended to use heating elements while babywearing! Prepping food without heat while babywearing is much safer.)
When I first pulled the Omni 360 out of its box, I thought This is a totally different animal from my Original Ergobaby! I wasn’t expecting the two carriers to be so significantly different from each other! From the waist belt to the crossable shoulder straps, this carrier is even more versatile and customizable to your body and your baby than the Original. The waist belt is even adjustable on both sides with lumbar support in the back (it literally feels like a pillow for my lower back). As far as keeping baby’s hips safe, there’s a statement on Ergobaby’s site that addresses that, and all Ergobaby carriers keep baby’s legs in a safe M-shape.
The Omni 360 Baby Carrier has been acknowledged as a “hip healthy” product by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute.
The biggest difference (obviously!) is that baby can face outward! This was always the one thing I missed while using the Original. While Belle is content to snuggle in facing my chest most of the time, most babies get curious and squirmy when they can’t see the world behind them. To face baby outward, just switch the loops in front from the black buttons to the gray ones. This narrows the area between baby’s legs for more comfortable, ergonomic positioning. There’s also a new velcro adjustment in the waist strap to adjust with baby’s size. Move the base of the carrier outward (toward each of your hips) as baby grows to widen their seat. It’s clearly labeled and color coded so you know when and where to move the velcro pieces.
Good news: the Omni is still breastfeeding friendly (except when baby faces outward, of course), and machine washable. Thank goodness! We sweat like crazy here in the South, so special washing instructions would be a headache! The attached privacy hood is still there for use anytime baby needs extra coverage. Because of Belle’s long hair, lots of complete strangers like to touch it! The cover helps prevent that, and I use it while nursing her, too. Another perk: there’s a detachable pouch with one open pocket and one zipper pocket! It’s the perfect little spot to store cash, your phone, snacks, and essential oils. It goes under baby’s bum so it’s out of the way, but easy for you to reach. I even started using it on my jogging stroller’s handle when I take the girls out for a run because the stroller doesn’t have anywhere to store my keys or phone while I’m jogging. Problem solved!
One feature of the Omni that’s not ideal for me is that the latch for the waist strap is on the left instead of the right. In my Original, I’m used to shifting Annabelle’s weight to my left to unhook the strap from my right and take her and the carrier off at once. Now I have to unlatch the waist strap with my left hand, which isn’t my dominant hand so it’s a bit tricky. I’ll probably get used to it, but it threw me at first. The Omni also feels more structured/stiff than the Original, but with use and a few washes that may change as the fabric relaxes.
While Annabelle is 8 months old now, I love that the Omni doesn’t require an infant insert and can be used with newborns starting at 7 lbs! Only the Omni 360 and the Adapt come “newborn ready” like this. It’s one less thing for new parents to 1) figure out how to use and 2) lug around.
For added security and comfort, you may cross the straps in the back and secure your infant more closely to you. This is also a fabulous option for those of us who have trouble reaching the latch in the back between our shoulder blades! With the criss-cross straps, all latching is done in the front where it’s easier to reach. The Omni can carry toddlers up to 33 lbs. Judith got the first ride in our Omni before Annabelle did! She was so excited to try it – when we were on vacation she would ask to get in the carrier every time we went up the same little hill in the town of Midland, Ontario. The flat Florida landscape didn’t prepare her muscles for Midland! Haha!
Because of all the Omni’s latches/buckles/velcro/customization it does take a minute to set up the first time and figure out where to buckle the straps, but the directions have clear text and pictures. Once you’re set up, you can leave everything in place so next time it’s all ready for you.
Click here to take a look at the Omni 360, and remember official launch was early this month, so if you purchase now you’ll be one of the first to have this new carrier! Use 10% Off Code: jo8KbuYBBM to save! There are 4 color options available right now for the Omni. Don’t forget to use the #inmyergo, #lovecarrieson, and #ergobaby hashtags when you share pics with your Ergo on social media to connect with other babywearing parents. My favorites are the gorgeous photos of mommas and babes hiking out in the wild <3 Follow Ergobaby on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter. All photos of me in this post were taken by my sister, Lindy (@downfalldarling).
Full disclosure: I was sent a free Omni 360 to review. All opinions are my own. Affiliate links are provided for your convenience and do not affect your price <3