I have an Ergo and a Beco Butterfly II, both of which I love and use regularly. I often get asked by friends and family which carrier is better. More specifically, I often get asked, if I only could have one baby carrier, which one would I choose: the Ergo or the Beco?
The truth is, I bought the Ergo and Beco at the same time more than 4 years ago with every intention of keeping one of them and returning the other. But soon after my purchases, I got pregnant again and was very sick, which prevented me from test driving either carrier with my one-year-old. Months passed and my husband kept asking me when I was going to return one. I never did. And many years later, I'm glad I didn't. Because in some situations, I prefer the Ergo, and in others, the Beco.
But what if you really can only afford to purchase one? Which one is better?
- Beco Anatomy
- Front Carry with Newborn (using infant insert)
- Front Carry with a Young Child
- The Back Carry with a Young Child
And now on to my description and comparison of the Beco and Ergo baby carriers.
Beco Butterfly 2 Baby Carrier
Made in USA and China. Made of regular or organic cotton with polyester fill.
The Ergo also has a pocket that zips closed on the back of the carrier (same location but separate compartment from where you store the hood). This pocket is extremely handy for carrying keys and other very small items. But it also makes the carrier bulkier and less attractive. The Ergo also has a bunch of accessories (pouches, backpacks) that can be attached to the carrier for additional storage capacity. Personally, I've never felt the need for additional storage. If I need more than my car keys, I most often wear a small over-the-shoulder purse over my carrier.
Made in China. Made of cotton or organic cotton and filled with cotton batting (body), EVA foam (waist strap), "premium" foam (shoulder straps). Ergo's straps are more padded and bulkier than Beco's. I have no strong preference as far as comfort goes. However, I am not a fan of polyurethane foam, period, and prefer the polyester fill that Beco uses. I haven't found anything definitive on whether Ergo's foam has flame retardant treatment (although I happened upon this while googling). As a general rule, I assume foam has been treated. Your baby probably will suck on your straps (mine have). I try to remember to use sucking pads with the Ergo. The base of the strap, where baby is most likely to be sucking, has no padding.
- Going for a walk or just working around the house with a newborn baby: Beco
- Wearing a young baby for a nap: Beco
- Back carry with a 5-month-old: Beco. Life gets so much easier when you can put the baby on your back. To me the Beco is worth its weight in gold just for those 2 months (5 to 6 months) when I feel comfortable using the Beco but not yet the Ergo for back carries. The Beco is less scary to switch front to back because the baby is sandwiched between two pieces of fabric and the taller bodice also provides more neck support for a still slightly wobbly baby.
- Long hike: Beco
- Shopping with a 4-month-old: Beco
- Shopping with a 9-month-old: Ergo
- With any aged baby, rocking/ walking the baby to sleep in the baby carrier with the intention of transferring the baby to a bed once completely asleep: Ergo
- Older baby at the park, with many possible ins and outs for swing ride, diaper changes, eating: Ergo
- Going to the park, and may need to nurse baby to sleep and then immediately put baby into carrier to sleep: Ergo (nurse with carrier already fastened around waist, and then you only have to pull straps up and clip once baby is asleep and positioned correctly)
- Dad will be wearing baby: Ergo
- The Beco is more comfortable and more secure (especially for back carries), but a little more time-consuming to put on and off. For the first 6 months, I always grab the Beco, except for a brief carry to get the baby to sleep before laying her on the bed.
- The Ergo is a little less comfortable than the Beco, particularly during long carries, but faster and simpler to take off and put on. I usually grab the Ergo from 9 months onward for anything but the long (hour-plus) carries. And the baby goes on my back whenever possible.
Carrier Comparison Chart by The Portable Baby
Compare Baby Buckle Carriers by Carry Me Away