Buckle carriers are also called Soft Structured Carriers (SSC). They are patterned after backpacks with padded shoulder and waist straps. They are quick and easy to put once they have been adjusted to fit your body. Most dads prefer SSCs as they are easy to put on and secure!



A buckle carrier is usually made out of all canvas, has adjustable shoulder and waist straps and secures baby by snapping the buckles.



When looking to buy a soft structured carrier ensure that the panel is wide enough to sit baby on the panel with fabric from knee to knee. Panel should not be  so wide that it overextend baby's legs. Learn more about positioning here...

Soft Structured Carriers are available in one or more of the following sizes:

  • Infant
  • Standard
  • Toddler
  • Preschool
The panel of most soft structured carriers is too wide to allow a newborn to sit on the panel with legs out comfortably. There are some brands that offer inserts or an adjustable panel to allow baby to sit properly inside of the panel. See the table below for recommended fit based on brand.

Care Instructions

  • Spot clean with soap and water first. 
  • Machine wash only when necessary with in gentle cycle in cold water with a free and clear detergent
  • Use a large mesh bag to prevent the straps from tangling up in your washing machine. 
  • Do not bleach
  • Lay flat to dry. 


Here's also a video that shows how to buckle how to buckle a Tula Baby carrier

>> How to buckle a Tula Baby Carrier by BabywearingFaith




How to use your Soft Structured Carrier

Soft Structured Carriers can be used to carry baby on your front or back. There are some that can be used on the hip. Here are some tips and some of my favorite videos to get you started using your carrier. 

  • When you are starting out it helps to practice in front of a mirror you can see how the fabric moves as you are adjusting.
  • Babies are not always very patient when you are learning a new carry. Try practicing with a doll first until you a little more comfortable adjusting SSC.
  • When doing a back carry stand in front of a soft surface like a bed or a couch and have someone spot you until you feel confident doing it yourself! 

**Please note that this is just a guide to give you an idea of how you can use a SSC and does not take the place of a in person consultation or professional hands on help. Please schedule a consultation or register to take a class to learn more!

Front Carry

A Front Carry can be done from the time baby is born and up until you are comfortable carrying your baby on the front. Front Carries are the most secure and are easy to transition to a nursing position. Ensure that baby can sit on the panel with legs out without over extending legs. See below to find the right fit for a newborn. 

  >> Front Carry in a Tula by BabywearingFaith

Back Carry

Back carriers are great to allow you to be hands free and still give baby visibility specially when she does not want to be carried facing in. Please wait until baby can sit unassisted and can support her head before trying out a back carry for the first time. This is usually around 6 months
>> Secure Hip Scoot and Back Carry with a full buckle by
Sheffield Sling Surgery   


Did you know you can nurse in your SSC? Yes, you can! It takes a little more adjustments than in other types of carriers but it can be done. I recommend that you wait until you feel comfortable nursing without a carrier and comfortable using your carrier before you combine them. Give it a try when you're ready!  
>> How to nurse in your carrier by Boba Inc.


Newborn Support

If you are looking to carry a newborn baby in a soft structured carrier you need to find a carrier that will properly support baby's hips and spine. Look to see that that baby can sit in a deep squat with support from knee to knee, that he has neck support and horizontal back support. These are some of the options available to you.  

Adjustable Panel 

The infant size Kinderpack and the Emeibaby baby carrier offer an adjustable panel that can be made narrow to properly support a newborn. The adjustment also make the body of the carrier smaller to give baby the support that he needs.
>> How to use Emeibaby with a newborn 

Built-In Insert

The Boba 4G offer a built-in insert which is essentially a small pillow that snaps to the inside of the panel to allow baby to sit well supported in the carrier. When baby outgrows the insert you can simply detach it.
>>How to use the 4G with a newborn 

Separate Insert

The Tula baby carrier offer an insert that can be purchased separately to correctly support a newborn in the carrier.

>> How to use the Tula insert



Soft Structured Carrier Guide

Brand Carrier Infant Standard Toddler Preschool Body
Unique Features
Price Our Recommended Fit
Boba Baby Carrier 4G     15.7" 13.5" 25" - 58" 45 lbs Detachable built-in insert Detachable hood hides away in pocket
Waist Pocket
$128 Newborn (with insert) - 12 mos
[starting at 7lbs]
Ergo Original     13" 14" 26" - 55" 45 lbs Separate Insert Non-detachable hood
Pocket on panel
$120 Newborn (with insert) - 12 mos
Emeibaby Standard             Adjustable Panel Non detachable hood
Hybrid Carrier with woven wrap body
$205 Newborn - 18 mos
[6.6 - 33lbs]
Emeibaby Toddler Plus               Non  detachable hood
Hybrid Carrier with woven wrap body
$220 1 - 3 years
[up to 39.6lbs]
Kindercarry Infant
    15" 9" - 15" 26" - 54" 25 lbs Adjustable Panel Stuff and snap hood
Can Cross Straps
$174 Newborn - 18mos
[9-30 lbs
Kindercarry Standard
    16" 17" 26" - 54" 50 lbs   Stuff and snap hood
Can Cross Straps
$164 1-3 yrs
[starting at 20lbs/28"]
Kindercarry Toddler
    18" 19" 26" - 54" 50 lbs   Stuff and snap hood
Can Cross Straps
$164 20 mos- 4+ yrs
[starting at 25 lbs/32"]
Kindercarry Preschool
      20" 20" 26" - 54" 50 lbs   Stuff and snap hood
Can Cross Straps
$164 3-5 yrs
[starting at 35 lbs/38"]
Moby Moby Go     18" 14.5"
    26" - 54" 45 lbs   Detachable hood
    Can Cross Straps
    Front carrier only
    $79.95 18 mos - 3 yrs 
    [starting at 15lbs]
    Tula Baby Carrier     15.5"
      14.5" 21" - 50" 45 lbs Separate Insert Detachable hood
      Waist Pocket
      $149 Newborn (with insert - 20 mos
      Tula Toddler     18" 19" 23" - 52" 50 lbs   Detachable hood
      Waist Pocket
      $169 18 mos - 3 + yrs [starting at 25lbs/32"]


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