Tula Carriers have been loved by parents and babywearing enthusiasts for years. The classic Tula Baby and Toddlers Carriers are easy to use, fit almost all adults and come in a huge variety of gorgeous designs.
Their range has expanded to include the adjustable Tula Free To Grow carrier, and their first carrier to offer an outward-facing carry position: the Tula Explore Baby Carrier.
SIMPLE TO USE TULA
Like all Tula Baby Carriers, the Tula Explore offers just the right amount of adjustments that you’ll need to get a great fit. With no extra dangly straps, this gives a nicely streamlined carrier that performs really well.
Whilst multi-way, dual-adjustable shoulder straps are now becoming more common, the clever shaping and simple one-pull mechanism of the Tula straps gives a great fit without needing to get your head around which option to use. The Tula Explore has rucksack-style, ‘H’ straps, with a small clip to do up at the back.
The Tula Explore also offers simple seat width adjustments to adjust the carrier fit to suit your baby and the carrying position you’re using, The three width settings and two height settings are simply adjusted with poppers.
FITS NEWBORN TO TODDLER
The Tula Explore is described as suitable from 0-4years, for babies from just 7lbs (3.2kg) up to a whopping 45lbs *20.4kg). Just how realistic are those numbers?
A lot of adjustable buckles carriers claim to suit both newborns and toddlers. In reality, many work best from 2-3 months and above. Not so the Explore! Having tested the Tula Explore thoroughly, we’d say it is a good fit most full-term, average size babies by the time they are 2-4weeks old. How perfect the fit is will still depend on the baby’s height/length and how curled up they still are (the more curled, the less optimum the fit will be as there’s more risk of slumping in the carrier).
So long as your child is happy to ride with their arms out of the carrier, you could still get a good fit for a 3 or even 4-year-old. But if you want your toddler to be more ‘contained’ and able to snuggle down inside the carrier, you may want to move on to the generously sizes Tula Toddler Carrier once they reach 2-3 years.
TULA EXPLORE FITS PETITE TO PLUS-SIZE
Are you a petite parent who finds a lot of baby carriers too bulky? Or a larger wearer who find the straps too short on your current baby carrier? The Tula Explore really is for just about everyone! It has extra long webbing on the shoulder straps and waistband to easily accommodate taller and broader wearers. This extra length can be nearly rolled away into little elastic loops, giving a tight and tidy carry for more petite frames. The padding on the shoulders and waistband is cushiony without being bulky or stiff, and can be cinched down easily for petite wearers.
STRUCTURED YET SOFT
Our families are often surprised at just how soft the fabric is on Tula carriers. The Explore is no different. While it might look very similar at first glance to the likes of the BabyBjorn Carrier One – and even more similar to the Ergobaby Omni 360 – the fabric body panel is a whole lot softer. This means it can mould nicely around your baby. And feels like a big hug for your baby. It also has some gentle leg padding, to stop any fabric digging into your baby’s thighs.
ALL THE CARRYING POSITIONS
Carrying your baby on your chest facing you, from newborn? Yes. Carrying your baby on your chest facing outwards, from around 4 months? Yes. Carrying your baby on your back, from around 6 months (or whenever they can sit up well with some support?) Yes again.
ERGONOMIC OUTWARDS FACING TULA
This position is suitable from around 4 months plus, when your baby has full head and neck control and when they are tall enough to for their chin to sit about the top of the carrier. The Tula Explore has a really clever design, with panel-narrowing buttons to give a bucket-shaped seat. This gives an ergonomic position for your baby, even when facing outwards (aka world-facing/ front facing).
This means their pelvis will be tilted forwards, with their knees will be supported higher than their bum and their legs supported slightly forwards. In short, it will look and feel like they’re sitting in a very comfy deck chair!
This forward-facing position will still have the potential to strain your back more, as gravity will be working against you as their weight is pulled forwards and down. So try not to carry your baby facing out for extended periods, and not beyond 12 months at most.
COOL, BREATHABLE MESH VERSION
Tula Explore’s Coast version is designed both for warmer climates and for year-round use. Rather than just the usual cotton fabric body panel, Coast versions have a breathable mesh fabric panel. The increased airflow can help your baby a little cooler in very hot climates, though please still bear in mind our guidelines on safe babywearing in hot weather.
TULA EXPLORE HAS LOTS OF EXTRAS
The Tula Explore has a removable hood (handy popper again) for use at naptime and on sunny or windy days. We also LOVE the handy little pocket on the waistband, which is the perfect size for your keys and phone.
For those who want a bit of additional lower back support, you can also add-on an additional lumbar support pad.
Plus, you can now widen your carrier to more comfortably accommodate longer-legged toddlers with these clever pairs of Tula seat extenders.
AMAZING RANGE OF DESIGNS
From plain grey to rainbow stars and everything in between.
THE DOWNSIDES OF TULA EXPLORE
This really is an all-singing, all-dancing carrier, offering all positions for parents of all shapes and sizes. However, some people with less shoulder mobility can find it a little tricky to do up the safety clip on your back (when carrying your baby on your front). This important little clip is essential, as it secures the shoulder straps in place.
This little clip is attached to the shoulder straps on little sliding tracks, so you can shift it around to make it easier to reach. But be carefully not to position it too close to your neck, as this can alter how baby’s weight is distributed and lead to sore shoulders/upper back. Some people may find a carrier which also the option of crossed (‘X’) straps more comfortable, such as the Beco Gemini, Ergobaby Omni 360, Isara The One or the Manduca XT.