Love the idea of a snugly stretchy wrap, but daunted by tying and knotting? Since 2007 the Close Caboo has been a favourite of parents who want a soft stretchy newborn sling, without the worries of a wrap.
As a company, Close are constantly updating their fabrics and tweaking their design to give the best in comfort and ease of use. The Caboo has won multiple awards over the years, but what do our Carrying Consultants really think of it?
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WHY WE LOVE THE CLOSE CABOO
Suitable from Day One - and for Premature Babies
The Close Caboo really is suitable from Day 1; one of the few slings or carriers that is advertised as safe from only 5lb in weight, you really can use your Caboo from birth. It's a great option for parents of low birth weight babies or twins who want a slightly more structured sling from newborn.
You Can Use the Caboo for Twins!
Although not on the manufacturer's instructions, we've helped many families to safely carry newborn twins in Close Caboos. There are many videos online showing how this may be done, but if you're expecting or have newborn twins we'd strongly recommend getting some hands-on help from one of our team or an experienced, insured Carrying Consultant near you.
Super Snuggly Carrying
When correctly fitted in a Close Caboo your baby will be beautifully supported in the soft, stretchy fabric. There's gentle padding to support behind their neck, and no buckles to dig into them.
Caboo really is genius when it comes to sourcing fabrics - both their Cotton Blend and Organic Cotton carriers offer a lovely level of support and stretch, without being too thick or hot to wear. The 'Lite' version has slightly less fabric so is even lighter to wear; but as the fabric pieces are narrower than the regular Caboo versions, they tend to be outgrown once your baby is around 3months+.
Quick and Easy to Use
The Caboo comes in two parts - the first you simply pop over your head like a t-shirt, before adjusting the size using the two sets of rings. You then pop your baby into the cross of fabric made by the sling on your front, and lastly tie the support band around you both.
For most people, the Caboo is simple to learn and feels quick and easy to get on. For the best support for you and your baby, the key is getting the whole thing tight enough to hold your baby snugly against your chest.
Great for Supporting Breastfeeding
The Caboo is also very simple to adjust to use as a breastfeeding aid - without needing to take off the sling you can reposition your baby into a reclined feeding position, using the rings to loosen the fabric appropriately.
Please note that this is not a hands-free breastfeeding position as you will still need to support your baby's head with your hand or arm.
Once your baby can fully stabilise their head and latch unaided (about 4-5 months), you can simply loosen the Caboo and let them feed in an upright position.
Is it really simpler than a stretchy wrap?
We definitely agree that the Close Caboo is less daunting to most new sling users than a stretchy wrap. To a new parent, turning a long bit of fabric into a safe secure sling seems a bit like witchcraft, and the slightly more pre-done design of the Caboo is very reassuring.
However, the Caboo still requires the tying of one knot behind your back, so it doesn't completely take away the need to tie. When we teach people how to use both a stretchy wrap and a Caboo we quite often find that they prefer a wrap. It just depends on the individual - once you know how to tie a wrap it's never as hard as you'd think, and sometimes the two-part design of the Caboo seems more complicated than a simple wrap.
Is it better than a stretchy wrap?
In short, no. We don't believe that the Caboo offers a combination of features and performance that is better than a good quality stretchy wrap.
Once the Caboo is fitted to you, then it works in exactly the same way as a stretchy wrap. It offers the same carrying experience for your baby, and just like a stretchy wrap you can pop your baby in and out of the sling without having to take it off each time.
We also find that parents generally get more support for their back and shoulders when using a stretchy wrap than with a Caboo. This is because a stretchy wrap distributes the weight more evenly around the whole of your torso. The Caboo tends to hold the weight higher on your torso, with less lumbar support, which you may notice as your baby gets bigger.
However, if what your looking for is a quick sling that you can put on with minimal wrapping, then the Caboo definitely does this job nicely.
Anything else to consider?
As with all stretchy slings, you're unlikely to be using the Close Caboo as your only sling beyond 4-6 months. Your snugly newborn will love being carried in the Caboo, but once they get more aware and active they won't appreciate the swaddled up carrying position as much.
Whilst many families do still use their Caboo very happily for naptimes or around the house with babies up to 9-12 months, most will find that a stretchy sling like the Caboo doesn't feel sturdy enough for walking or days out past 6 months or so.
Compared to a stretchy wrap you may find that your baby starts to feel heavy sooner in the Caboo, because of the lower level of back support.