Children are generally more susceptible to cold than adults. This is because their tiny bodies tend to lose heat faster. Additionally, children, especially the younger ones, may not be aware that they are getting cold, which means that it falls on you to ensure that they stay warm.
This post puts together some useful tips that might come in handy when selecting the most suitable winter gear for your little ones.
Tips for buying children winter wear
1. The importance of layering
It is important to layer different winter-appropriate clothing items to provide warmth for your child. Layers are great for children of all ages as they provide optimum insulation, and if it gets too warm, they can be easily peeled off. If your child feels cold, you can simply add another layer or two to warm them up and find the perfect balance for your little one.
2. Avoid overheating
According to The American Academy of Pediatrics, the general rule of thumb when it comes to layering is that kids should be dressed in one additional layer of clothing over what a grownup would need to stay warm in the same weather conditions.
Excessive layering could make your child colder. This is because too many layers cause your kid to sweat, which in turn makes their inner clothes become wet and allowing wind and cold air to bring their body temperature.
3. How to go about layering
There are three main layers that you should be aware of:
- Base layer
The base layer is in direct contact with the child’s skin. Clothes that make up this layer can be a fleece, polyester, or wool wicking base that ensures your little stays warm, and his/her skin also remains dry. A base layer should fit a child snugly.
- Middle layer
The middle layer goes over the base layer. The main role of this layer is to ensure that the body of your child retains heat. A middle layer should fit close to the body without affecting your child's movement. Materials for this layer include fleece and wool.
- Outer layer
This is outermost is meant to shield your child against snow, rain, and wind. This layer has to be waterproof to ensure that water does not penetrate through it and get into the inner layers. An outer layer should allow effortless movement and allow enough room for the middle and outer layers.
4. Winter clothes should fit properly
Children, especially toddlers and babies, grow incredibly fast. For toddlers and older children, you want to buy clothes that are a size up so that you can use the coat for at least two winters, but ensure that the coat isn’t too big to the point that it restricts your little one’s movements or looks sloppy.
Another important consideration is that while going for winter clothes that are a size bigger will allow your child to grow into it, any extra space means that insulation is less effective. Therefore, if you are purchasing a size up, ensure that your child has enough layers to keep them warm.
5. Winter accessories
Some accessories that will come in handy when dressing your child for the winter weather include:
A hat is essential for keeping your little one's head cozy and warm on cold days. A winter hat should provide ear coverage and be made of lightweight material. Depending on your needs, there a variety of materials that you can choose from, including acrylic, fleece, and Sherpa. This hat and scarf combo is a great option that you might want to consider.
A beanie that is machine-washable is considered a basic yet crucial winter accessory that will ensure that your little one’s head and ears remain warm during winter. This pom pom beanie is a cute unisex accessory that can be paired with a variety of outfits.
Ensure that your kid’s ears stay nice and toasty by accessorizing with earmuffs that are lined with faux fur.
Add a scarf to your child’s winter outfit to ensure that your child’s face and neck are shielded against cold temperatures and wind.
Mittens ensure that your little one’s hands stay warm. They are a better option than gloves, especially on particularly cold days, because they don’t separate your child’s fingers, and as result, more heat is generated.
- Snow boots
Snow boots designed for children should feature waterproof properties as well as provide adequate traction and support that is needed for when they are running around and playing in the snow. These fluffy snow boots are easy to slip on and keep your child’s toes warm in the snow. Additionally, they are non-slip for added safety.
6. Consider the ease with which you can take off and put on your child’s clothes
While full-body snowsuits might seem like the obvious choice when dressing your child, they can prove to be a bit inconvenient especially when it comes to a diaper change or a potty break. A fleece jacket or zippered winter coat will be easier to put on as well as take off.
7. Consider the weight of the clothes
While a thick, heavy coat may provide your little one with plenty of warmth during the winter, this type of clothing is more restrictive. Younger children tend to have a hard time moving around when they are dressed in bulky winter coats. Instead, opt to dress them in warm lightweight layers.
8. Thick winter coats and child car seats
A thick winter coat will undoubtedly keep your kid warm and toasty, but it might also be a safety hazard especially when worn in a car seat. This is because, in the event of an accident, a thick winter coat may end up compressing too much and create extra slack, and consequently allow your child to slip out of the secure harness straps of the car seat.
Instead of a bulky winter coat, you might want to use a light sweater or jacket in a car. Alternatively, you can simply shed the bulky outer coat before strapping your little one into the car, and then cover them with a warm, fuzzy blanket.
Whether you live in an area where winter temperatures tend to fall below zero, or you get to enjoy warmer winters, it is important to be prepared to dress your child in the right winter gear.
Before the cold season hits, you want to take inventory of all the clothing you have so that you know what you need to buy to ensure that your children stay safe, healthy, and warm all through winter.