I loathe the hot weather, I sun hate like a vampire. Unfortunately avoiding it isn't an option; resistance is futile.
But just because the sun is out doesn't mean you have to put the slings away, on the contrary the pros of baby wearing still apply and in my opinion outweigh the cons. There are things you can do to ensure it's a little more comfortable for the both of you.
1. Stay hydrated.
Pop a bottle of water in your bag to drink regularly from and let baby feed on demand. If you're breastfeeding your clever milk will adjust and baby will get more of the watery, thirst quenching fore-milk. Breastfed babies (especially those under 6m) don't need any additional fluids besides your breastmilk. If you're using formula you may find offering your baby cool boiled water beneficial.
2. Dress appropriately.
Light loose layers favouring cotton/linen/bamboo textiles are best. Always remember a sling counts as one layer.
Even if you have to hold it on their head yourself, a hat is an absolute must. Wide brims keep the sun out of their eyes and can protect the back of their neck. You may have more success in the 'wear your hat game' if you use one that fastens under their chin.
4. Sun cream
There's a phrase that abroad, only mad dogs and englishmen venture out in the midday sun. Even health guidelines say children should avoid being out in direct sunlight between 11am-3pm when it's often at it's strongest. If you must go out try and shaded areas. Sometimes just simply crossing the road can significantly provide more shade. Start a trend; use a parasol.
You can place a folded Muslin between your chest and babies head to absorb sweat. Some people wet the cloth to act like a cool pad.
7. Type of sling & carry
It's not intrinsic that you invest in a sun friendly sling, it's perfectly do-able to wear your baby in your usual sling. However if you wish you can purchase a sling designed for warmer climates such as mesh slings or solarweave slings etc. Some examples are:
Calin Bleu Gauze wraps
Rhapsody Bali Breeze
Soul Slings (Linen or silk ringslings)
Fil'up mesh wrap
Generally you'll find linen, cotton or bamboo cooler.
Remember each spread pass counts as a layer of clothing, so if doing a FWCC don't spread the passes. If using a stretchy wrap you will have the equivalent of 3 layers of clothing from the wrap alone.
High back carries, torso carries and hip carries have less surface contact so may be cooler for you both.
It's common sense that the less fabric you wrap round you, the cooler you may be so it may be worth practicing with a shortie.
Mei Tais have open-ish sides so will allow air to circulate.
My go to is a Sakura Bloom linen ringsling, carrying Moomin on my hip.
8. Spray bottle
Some people find having a spray bottle in your change bag to lightly spritz yourself/baby/your sling can help cool you down.
You can pick up handheld fans from pound-shops these days or even make one with paper like when you were at school.
As always, when babywearing, above all else remember babywearing safety: TICKS regardless of the climate.
So is it worth babywearing in summer?
In my opinion yes. The last thing I want to be doing is lugging a buggy or pram around in the heat. Babywearing gives me much more freedom too when out and about. The benefits to baby are immense and I like baby close where I can keep an eye on her, especially in the heat. So long as, like any weather, you carry safely and think it through there is absolutely no reason not to babywear in summer.
What are your tips for babywearing in hot weather?