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I purchased the Mamas and Papas parasol from Argos around 9 months ago in preparation for a holiday we planned. Although we don't own a Mamas and Papas pushchair (we bought it to place onto a pushchair that we'd already bought), there are no accessories available for our particular pushchair, including a parasol, which I saw as a necessity for our trips in order to shade my daughter from the Sun. It cost around £20 at the time which I thought seemed quite expensive for what I considered to just be a small umbrella, but when I looked around it didn't actually seem much more expensive than more general non branded ones available.
The parasol measures around 92cm in length and 37cm in width. It's available in a variety of colours - ours is charcoal (like the one pictured) but there's also pink, blue, red, green and purple available too. It has a small 'Mamas and Papas' logo printed in white on one face of the umbrella.
The parasol comes in a plastic wrapper that I assumed was designed to keep it in after use, although ours went in the bin shortly afterwards because it ripped when removing the parasol from it on it's first outing! There's a large clasp clip at the bottom of the parasol that is for fixing it to the pushchair - this has a small twist handle on it that allows the clamp to be tightened in order to fit securely to the pushchair's frame. That was the reason I thought that this model would work sufficiently on our Chicco pushchair, although in the end it wasn't a perfect fit.
Although the clamp tightens really well and feels very firm on the frame when first fixed on, we have found that after around an hour of walking around with the parasol on, it usually falls forward as the clamp starts to become loose. This means we have to keep stopping as we're walking around to tighten it before carrying on. I'm not sure whether this is due to using it with another type of pushchair rather than one from the Mamas and Papas range, although it is supposed to be a 'universal' parasol and the description stated that it was for use on a wide range of pushchairs and prams.
It's a shame that the clamp has let us down, because the actual parasol is fantastic. It feels sturdy when it's put up - the six fibreglass spokes underneath the parasol material are strong and cover a wide area and shades a wide part of the pushchair which I've been happy with as I've felt that it's shaded my daughter very well. It does, as with other parasols, need to be moved around slightly to make sure that it's shading as much as possible from the Sun but that's really easy to do with a small coiled section towards the bottom of the parasol that makes it easy to bend and position correctly at the right angles. Again though - the clamp's tight fastening can be easily affected by this positioning; we found on our holidays that we had to keep tightening the clamp every time we positioned it differently via this coil as moving the parasol via the coil would start to impact on the fitting of the clamp. There is a quick release button on the clamp, which releases it from the frame fast rather than having to use the twist handle, although this isn't something we've ever bothered with.
Overall, I'm unsure as to whether I'd recommend this parasol. It might work perfectly on a Mamas and Papas pushchair as the clamp might fit more securely to it's frame, but I can't be very enthusiastic about it's use on another type of pushchair and as it's described as a 'universal parasol' ie suitable for all types, that is what I must base my overall rating on. I've rated it three stars overall as the actual parasol section is great, it's just such a shame that the clamp doesn't stay in place for long enough as having to stop every hour to keep tightening it is a pain and it's embarrassing when you're walking along and then all of a sudden the parasol falls over! It could also be quite dangerous to others as it swings suddenly away from the pushchair!
Thanks for reading :o)
Flexible arm allows parasol to tilt to maximise coverage of your baby. Easily fitted to your pushchair. General information: Manufacturer's helpline number 0845 268 2000. EAN/MPN/UPC/ISBN: 5031672867009.