Today’s the day! The Boba X is officially shipping and ready for purchase. If you missed my first glimpse, go check it out here. Here’s what it looks like fresh from the box.
I had the opportunity this week (and this past weekend) to try out the Boba X myself, and help some mothers fit the new Boba X.
Here’s what we all thought of it:
Ashley and 4-year-old daughter.
My goofy gal is 4 years, 4 months and weighs 35 lbs:
I was very excited to pull the Boba out and start checking out the details of this carrier. I’ll share some tips and tricks in another post next week. Here’s what I loved though:
- First of all, the fit! It’s comfortable. It fits me well. It also fits my 4 year old well and keeps her in a spread squat position. This position isn’t as important for her at this stage but if she had special circumstances — especially low muscle tone — I feel this carrier would support her well. The height hits her just below the base of her arms, which is the perfect support for her back (plus it keeps her safe, so she can’t do a back bend right off of me).
- No stirrups: My kids had a love/hate relationship with the stirrups. I did as well. Let’s just say there often was one missing even though I always put them back in the same place. One would get knocked off the shelf or something would happen to them (I’m looking at you silly kiddos who like to hide things and make mom feel like she’s going crazy!). This carrier has zip in panels that are “toddler extensions.” They’re a little bigger than the stirrups so hopefully would be a little easier to keep in one place, or at least easier to find if they get temporarily lost.
- Adjustable height and body width: There aren’t specific settings either-it’s super flexible how you can adjust this carrier to fit different kids.
- Lots of flexibility of adjustment for fit: As with other Boba carriers, there are lots of possible adjustments including two ways to tighten the arm straps. This carrier also features two adjustments to bring in the front part of the strap (I think this adjustment will be wonderful for petite parents who find that other carriers gap away from their body) and to shorten the body of the carrier. A new feature is that you can criss-cross the straps while baby is in a front carry. This is a comfortable way to wear a little bit heavier baby longer term. The waist band is long enough that most parents will be able to wear it and easily switch between wearers.
- Great pocket for your phone: Just like on the Boba 4G, there’s a great pocket on the waist for your phone, some cash or a card, and or a lip balm (or other small non-poky object). I compared the pockets on the Boba 4G and Boba X, this one is a bit larger.
- There’s still a little flap that snaps down the strap of your purse, diaper bag, or backpack (there’s one on each strap).
- Right now the carrier is only available in grey but new prints will be released soon. This grey is a really beautiful color though and very neutral. I believe a mother and father (as well as the rest of baby’s family and caregivers) would be happy to wear this without complaint.
- A lot of thought went into the design: The zippers that you use to zip on the extra width panels are hidden (they won’t bug little legs). There’s a safety elastic strap that will hold the buckle on the strap if it somehow comes undone by accident. This is an extra measure to help keep baby safe that was integrated in the carrier.
- The instruction manual is very thorough. This is important if you’re a new wearer or don’t have experience with a Boba carrier. I always recommend looking over the manual before starting to play. This is how I learned this carrier offers an option of criss-cross straps for front carries!
The things I didn’t really like:
- I still am a bit worried that the toddler extensions that zip on to make this a toddler carrier will get lost. Since my youngest is an older toddler, I plan to keep them on the carrier except when I’m helping families try out the carrier.
- The zippers were SUPER stiff on the panels. It took a few times of zipping on and off and they’re still a bit stiff but I’m able to zip them on a quite a bit easier now.
- The webbing was much stiffer than I remember being on previous new Bobas that I’ve tried. This could be easily remedied by washing and laying flat to dry before playing or by loosening and tightening the carrier a few times before using.
- The “tabs” on the bottom of the adjusters (see picture below) were kind of short (especially the one that has the buckle). I like a little bit longer of a tab so that I can pull it up to release the strap to loosen it. It took a little hunting around while adjusting a doll in a front carry to find the tab to lift up to loosen. As I’ve played around with the carrier more, it’s gotten easier to hunt for these tabs and I can feel a little bit of a difference between them.
Overall, I would rate this carrier:
5 stars! The things I didn’t like were fixable or ok for me to look past and the way the carrier felt more than made up for these. This is my favorite Boba yet. I LOVE that this is made for newborn* through toddler (* You will see later why I put this here). I recently sold my lovely toddler soft structure carrier that I’ve worn two of my littles in. I also recently had surgery so my muscles aren’t as strong for babywearing as they used to be. I was a bit worried that this carrier may not distribute her weight as well as the toddler carrier that I had. Her weight was distributed well, however, and the only pressure spots that I got were on my lower back when I wore it for about an hour (pretty much every carrier including wraps does this to me when I wear them long enough). I was SO impressed with how light it made my 35 lb toddler feel on my back. BUT as LeVar Burton would always put it on Reading Rainbow . . .”You don’t have to take my word for it!”
Elly S. and her 16-month-old son
This sweet toddler is all smiles and giggles, is walking, and weighs 19 lbs 15 oz:
Elly’s son typically prefers ring slings. He hasn’t been much of a fan of soft structure carriers. The width of the carrier with the toddler extensions was a little too wide. As pictured, we tried to insert the hook portion of the Velcro in the loop Velcro portion with the body because the body without them was a bit too narrow in my opinion. They were designed to go in a separate portion. After this mother left, I figured out another trick that I think would have fit a little better. I will share this trick with you next week!
Elly’s main concerns were that usually an adjustable carrier is like a car seat, not easy to switch between two children. You have to keep getting them in and out of the seat to make sure it fits properly before getting baby fully buckled in. This could be a concern with this carrier, however, typically, the webbing will get a little indention so if you’re switching between wearing a toddler and an infant, you likely will be able to set the carrier pretty quickly based on the webbing “memory.” She also thought that it would be a great idea to have a different texture (somewhat like braille) on the different tabs so you know which one you’re adjusting when reaching behind you.
The carrier was really comfortable. Her baby prefers front carries so she didn’t try a back carry. He settled in well to the carrier and enjoyed snuggling with his mama. Elly did notice that she had a little bit of a pressure point under her arms, especially when her arms were tight to her body. This is one common complaint that some parents have when using a soft structure carrier.
Erynne M. and her 7-week-old daughter.
This sweet little baby weighs 13 lbs 15 oz:
Erynne enjoyed putting her little squishy baby into the Boba X. She said, “It feels like I’m wearing nothing.” She had previously mentioned that she had tried an Ergo with one of her other kids. The Ergo had burned her out on using a soft structure carrier. She was optimistic trying the Boba. Erynne has shorter arms and with the webbing being stiff, she had some difficulty adjusting the carrier. Once we got it adjusted on her, though, it was really comfortable. She mentioned the only pressure point she felt was her baby’s head against her body.
As a Certified Babywearing Educator, my main comment was that her baby fit very well into the carrier. We didn’t have to tighten the straps all the way down to make the panel as small as it could go. The placement of the hood in the pocket helps add some extra support to her baby’s neck. We adjusted the width down as far as it could go and it fit this baby really well. This carrier certainly has some sleepy dust. Baby settled right in for a nap in the carrier.
Emily H. and almost 3-week-old son.
This sweet baby boy has a twin sister who napped while we played. He weighs 7 lb 8 oz:
Emily is a busy mom with 4 children, including newborn twins. Her newborn daughter was sleeping while we played. Her adorable baby boy was happy to help us try out the Boba X. While the carrier felt comfortable and fit her body well, she commented that her son seemed a little too low in it. I agree. She likes the ease of a soft structure carrier. “Wovens and ring slings have scared me a little with the learning curve.” She didn’t feel any pressure points while wearing this carrier.
As a Certified Babywearing Educator, I believe that even adjusted all the way down, the panel was a little too wide for her infant. I believe when he’s just a couple more pounds and a couple inches taller, he will fit in this carrier great.
Bottom line on fit: As tiny as newborns are, it’s hard to fit a carrier to every tiny newborn through long-legged toddler. As for my asterisk earlier, I believe this carrier would fit a 9-10 lb newborn quite possibly. I would suggest checking for knee to knee support. Every baby is built a little bit differently. If this baby’s legs were just a little longer, he would have had wonderful knee to knee support. If you want to use this carrier birth to 45 lbs, I would suggest keeping an eye on the fit for both the height of the body of the carrier and the panel width. If it doesn’t fit well when baby’s BRAND NEW, give it another week or two. I may not call this a full birth through toddler carrier but it’s much closer than any other soft structure carrier that I’ve worked with putting a newborn in. The carrier didn’t gap from baby’s neck and gave great support. The Boba 4G seemed to fit and support baby’s neck better from about 2-3 months on. I believe this carrier will fit many babies from about 2-3 weeks on but I encourage you to try it with your newborn! I’d love to hear your experience with this carrier!
*For full disclosure I am a Boba Ambassador. I received this new Boba X carrier free of charge in exchange for my honest review. I became a Boba Ambassador because I love their products. They send me free products to review from time to time but I do not receive any other compensation from them. I like to offer my honest opinion and free products do not influence my views*