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How to dress your toddler for the weather

Dressing a toddler for the weather can be a little tricky because their bodies don't work in the same way as an adult's body does. Generally, though, the rule of thumb is to always dress your toddler in one more layer of clothing than an adult in all weather conditions.

As you dress your toddler, remember they need lots of protection from the elements. Dressing them appropriately will ensure that they are comfortable in any weather condition.

This guide will give you a few tips and tricks to help your dress your toddler appropriately for the weather.

How to dress a toddler for cold weather

1. Mittens

When dressing your toddler for cold weather, go for mittens instead of conventional gloves. Putting a glove on a toddler’s hands such that every finger ends up in the right place can be super challenging. Mittens, on the other hand, are much easier to put on. They are also warmer since the fingers are in contact with each other.

Mittens are also made with thicker fabric that keeps your toddler’s fingers warm in the cold weather. Most come with a warm inner lining and are weather-resistant. This is why they are the best choice for those little fingers. 

2. Hats

Hats are important in regulating a toddler's body temperature. They lose a lot of body heat through their heads. A good hat will go a long way in preventing this heat loss. This, in turn, keeps the body temperature warm.

Hats are especially vital for toddlers who are yet to get a full head of hair. Even if your child’s jacket or snowsuit has a hood, a hat will do a better job of keeping their head warm. You can pull the hood over the hat for extra warmth. If possible, get a hat with ear mittens that fastens under the chin. This will keep your child’s entire face warm in the cold weather.

3. Safety

You should also get clothes with safety features when dressing your child for the weather. Clothes with zippers and snaps are excellent choices for toddlers. Avoid clothes with strings and ribbons. These might unravel and may end up being a choking hazard for your toddler.

If your toddler is yet to be potty-trained and still wears diapers, you would want clothes that make diaper changes easier. Outfits with zippers and snaps do just that. 

4. Snow features

Be sure to also get clothes with snow features when dressing your toddler for the cold weather. This is important especially if your child will spend some time outdoors during the cold weather.

Get snow pants for them, as well as jackets for toddlers that feature gear found in adult jackets that are helpful in the snow, like snow pass holders, reinforced cuffs, snow gaiters, and more.

5. Consider car safety

You should also be aware of the risks associated with your toddler’s winter jacket and the car seat. Although they may keep your toddler warm during the cold season, thick winter coats can be safety hazards when worn in the car seat. In order for your baby’s car seat to keep your child safe, the straps must be able to fit across your toddler’s chest. In case of an accident, thick winter coats may compress too much, allowing your child to slip through the harness straps of the car seat.

To avoid this, your toddler should wear a light sweater or jacket instead of a thick winter coat in the car. You should remove their winter coat before strapping them into their seat. You could then put their coat on backwards over their arms after you have already strapped them into the seat. This will keep them warm if the weather’s too cold.

6. Footwear

Don't forget to include footwear! If you intend to go outside, your toddler could wear a pair of boots. Otherwise, they can do just fine with a pair of sneakers. However, you should have an extra pair of socks just in case the ones they have on get wet. You do not want to get your toddler’s feet chilly.

A good pair of shoes and warm socks will go a long way in keeping their feet warm in the cold weather. If you feel that the weather is too cold, consider adding on a few layers of warm socks to keep their toes toasty.

How to dress a toddler for hot weather

1. Sun protection

When dressing your toddler, you also need to remember that kids have thinner and more sensitive skin than adults. You should always monitor their exposure to the sun’s rays when they are outside.

The clothes they wear are an effective way of providing protection from the harmful ultraviolet rays from the sun. You could limit their exposure to these rays by getting clothes with an Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) rating. These clothes ensure that your toddler’s skin is protected from these harmful rays.

Also, don't forget to use other protection methods like applying sunscreen on their delicate skin.

2. Eye protection

You should also not forget about eye protection when dressing your toddler on a hot and bright day. They may be hesitant and curious about wearing eye protection but sunglasses play a very important role in protecting their eyes from sun damage.

Also, your toddler may be tempted to look directly at the sun. Wearing sunglasses eliminates the risk of damage to their eyes. You should get sunglasses that provide protection from the sun’s UVA and UVB rays. 

3. Hats

Hats are an important outfit regardless of the weather. On a bright day, put a wide-brimmed hat on your toddler's head. The wide brim will provide them with some shade that will protect them from the sun’s harmful rays. Hats also protect their eyes from the bright sun.

Final thoughts

As you dress your toddler, pay close attention to their reaction. If they start perspiring heavily, remove a few layers until they are comfortable. If they feel cold, you should add more layers. Their comfort comes first. Good luck!

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