Baby it’s cold outside: when to use a baby snowsuit, when to avoid them, and what to use instead!

  • Ergobaby
  • Nov 3, 2023
how to prepare for winter with a baby

Winter is coming and even if winter brings more rain than snow these days, we still have our share of chilly weather! With that comes the question of what to dress baby in during the winter months. After all, young babies cannot regulate their own body temperature, they can cool down or overheat quickly. In short: our baby is dependent on our help. So how do we do it right? A baby snowsuit is super cute but is it always the best choice? Or is there a better way to keep baby warm but not too warm?  Today, let’s take a look at different everyday situations and explain how to dress baby for them.

Dressing baby for winter: what baby winter clothes do I need and when?

First of all, the magic word for preparing your baby winter clothes is: LAYERS! This is the only way to be prepared for every situation. Both indoors and outdoors.

Create a good base of long-sleeved bodysuit and tights, or a romper suit. Then – depending on the room temperature and age – a jacket or jumper and trousers. It’s best to choose fabrics made of wool or a wool-silk mix. They keep the baby warm but are also breathable. Then you can add socks or fur slippers. A baby hat is also a must in winter. After all, heat escapes most quickly through the head and feet.

If you’re going outside, a puddle suit is a good choice. Now you may be wondering which onesie is best for baby to wear in winter? Parents often rely on the temperature-regulating properties of wool or fleece fabrics, so a fleece lined puddle suit is a popular choice. They are super practical because you don’t really need much more than a warming base and the puddle suit. Your baby is already wrapped up warm and cosy. If you’re going outside, baby mittens and a snood can be helpful. Many overalls have extra fold-down cuffs to protect delicate hands from getting cold.

With this winter outfit, you can now react individually to temperature fluctuations and adapt your baby’s outfit accordingly.

Can a baby wear a snowsuit in a baby carrier?

A baby carrier is a parenting essential in winter. It allows you to be close to your baby and easily check if they’re too warm or too cold.

A padded baby snowsuit is a no-go in a baby carrier: the thick lining and restricted mobility mean that baby can overheat quickly and it’s much harder to achieve an ergonomic position.

So what should you use instead? Well, your baby carrier counts as an extra layer of clothing. Plus, your body also keeps baby warm, acting as another layer. This means that a simple base layer like a vest, and a woollen or fleece onesie (ideally footless so it doesn’t pull on baby’s legs) are a good idea. Pay special attention to the head, legs, feet and hands. A baby hat, baby mittens if necessary and booties or thick socks are a must. Then over the top we also recommend an Ergobaby weather cover either our All Weather Cover with a cosy fleece lining or our Rain and Wind Cover without the fleece lining.

You can read more about what to wear winter babywearing here and here.

What to wear for winter walks in a stroller – is a pram footmuff worth the investment?

Winter can be one of the best times of year for a stroll in your Metro plus stroller. There’s nothing lovelier than wrapping up warmly and exploring a winter landscape. Have you ever thought how cosy it would be to just slip into a fleece-lined, pram footmuff? We highly recommend it for cold winter walks. Even though the pram footmuff is great for keeping warm, you should still wrap your baby up thickly, depending on the length of the outing. Especially everything that peeks out of the top of the baby footmuff in winter (upper body, hands, head) and their feet too. 

Image by @laurasteamer

What does my baby wear in the car in winter?

In the car, “less is more”. Babies get quite warm in car seats anyway but the main concern here is safety. That’s why a snowsuit or jacket that is either thick or has slippery (waterproof) material in the car seat is a no-go. If it’s bulky it prevents the straps from being close enough to baby’s body to keep them secure and if it’s slippery then the car seat straps can slide off in the event of an accident. In an ideal world you would heat the car up before putting baby in, but if that’s not possible then start with a warm base outfit and then a blanket over the top once baby is buckled in. You can then easily remove the blanket once the car heats up, so baby doesn’t overheat. Baby should also never wear a hat in the car.

What to dress baby in at night: do I need a specific winter sleeping bag?

And it’s not just daytime, what to dress baby in at night during the colder months can be tricky to navigate too. We absolutely recommend a baby sleeping bag at night. While your baby can easily roll free under a blanket during the night, the sleeping bag stays in place and keeps your baby nice and warm. But now you’re probably wondering what you should wear under the sleeping bag for your baby in winter and if you need a specially designed winter sleeping bag. The answer is: it all depends on how warm it is in the room where your baby sleeps and how thick the corresponding baby sleeping bag is (usually indicated in TOG). The room temperature for an optimal sleeping environment is between 16 and 20 degrees. Of course, it is not always possible to regulate your house temperature to that point, because the outside temperatures also vary greatly in winter. That’s why we’ve created the following table for you to use as a guide.

baby sleep winter tog

An example: The room temperature in the baby’s room is 18 degrees Celsius at night and your baby has a TOG 1.0 (medium) sleeping bag. In this case, your baby should wear pyjamas with feet or a long-sleeved bodysuit complemented by trousers with feet. This way, your baby is perfectly prepared for the night.

So… when do you use a baby snowsuit?

While a baby snowsuit is extremely cute, they’re generally best saved for exactly what they’re designed for – baby being in snow! Dressing your baby in winter and keeping them warm (but not overheating!) is something that most parents Google at least 50 times, but once you get the hang of it, it becomes second nature!

And as you can see, no matter what you plan to do, in the end layers is almost always the answer to the question of what to dress baby in during the winter months. This way you can monitor baby and react quickly to changes in temperature – layers give you more flexibility to make adjustments when you need. Our final tip… because socks, shoes and baby mittens all tend to get lost when you’re out and about… it’s a good idea to have an extra pair of each in your bag. So what are you waiting for? Get outside and enjoy a winter wonderland!