Babywearing In Winter

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A perfect way how to avoid problems with pushing a pram through snow or slush of winter is to carry your baby. It will also allow you two free hands if you have an older child and you two want to enjoy a common walk and play in a snow. So how to practice babywearing in winter?

Babywearing in cold weather?

Babywearing in winter could open many questions: is it better to wear my baby over the coat or underneath? Is it worth to buy a babywearing coat? How many layers should a baby have? Wouldn’t I be too hot and the baby too cold? In this article we will try to cover all principles of babywearing in winter and clarify these questions.

Getting dressed in winter

There are many matter-of-fact reasons why to decide for babywearing underneath the coat, rather than over it. The first advantage is you don’t need to dress your baby in too many layers, as many children just don’t like being dressed. Moreover, it’s almost impossible to place such warmly dressed baby into a carrier or a wrap correctly.

As a second reason, when you enter a warmer environment (such as a shop, house, when you heat yourself up while walking) it’s much easier to take off one layer off you, than to take off your sweater or hoodie, or even to put down your baby and take off her clothes, especially when Baby is asleep. Also, after you come home, and you want to put a sleeping baby into the baby cot, it’s much easier when Babyis not dressed too warmly in so many layers and so you don’t need to worry about overheating her or waking her up by trying to take her clothes off.

The third reason is very practical, especially if you are worried about baby being dressed too much or too less. If you have her on your own body, you can warm her up more easily (and you as well), and you can check her body temperature anytime and even regulate it.

There are many different functional clothes or aids that will make babywearing in winter easy. Here is a brief overview:

  • Jacket extender

The cheapest way how to get a coat suitable for babywearing is to have an extender made. Based on the type of fastening, you can even use your extension with several coats and jackets. Be careful about the price, if your tailor asks for a lot of money, try to find another one or consider buying an original wearing coat/jacket which has many benefits comparing to extender. A pattern is very important so your baby is not exposed to the wind and also be careful about the zip; the one on extender needs to fit with the one on the coat/jacket.

Main disadvantage is that it can be used only for front wearing, as your coat/jacket is most probably not suitable for wearing at the back.

  • Protecting cover

Padded protecting cover is a universal aid for babywearing in cool weather. You will cover your baby in a carrier or a wrap and you wear your own jacket. Baby is kept warm and protected from wind. Many covers also have a hoodie for a baby, so it’s really practical in snow, rain or wind.

There are several types, padded, not padded, waterproof… a biggest benefit of a cover is that you can wear it with any coat; even your partner can use it. You can use the cover when carrying your baby at the back.

However, protecting cover does not need to be the best solution for you, especially when you are looking for a fast way to get dressed or if you are cold-sensitive. In that case you could mind the fact you are not able to zip your own coat/jacket.

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The most comfortable, but also the most expensive solution is to purchase a babywearing jacket designed for babywearing. It’s usually suitable also for wearing at the back, it has an extension for wearing your baby and sometimes even a section for a pregnant belly. Such solution is more convenient in case you wear your baby daily, in all weather conditions. Coat will keep both of you warm. When you buy a babywearing coat, you won’t have any issues with dressing up your baby into many layers and you will appreciate putting the coat on with ease.

There are many brands and types, or materials of babywearing coats/jackets. There are thin, soft-shell versions, where you can purchase also a fleece hoodie and so get a combination of three layers, suitable for hiking and freezing weather. Soft-shell jackets will protect you against wind and rain. Quilted or wool winter coats are an elegant version and will look beautiful during every day wearing. Benefit is their length as it covers your hips and keeps you warm. There are also various cotton hoodies or sweaters. Some types of jackets are suitable even for tandem wearing, if you are able to get an extra extension.

Big advantage of babywearing jackets is that they can be used even during pregnancy, when your belly is too big for standard jackets. After the baby is born, your jacket is ready to become a babywearing one. We can wear it even after your babywearing period is finished, when you take out the extension, especially when you buy the one you really like and suits your style.

When choosing the jacket, it’s important to pay attention to the correct size and pattern. Very narrow and fitting jackets could be uncomfortable when wearing a bigger child.

Clothes for your baby

Functional clothes could be a perfect choice for babywearing in winter season. The best option is wool or merino clothes. It has great thermoregulatory characteristics, one layer warms you up better then cotton and so you don’t need to dress the baby too much. Thanks to good sweat absorption you don’t need to worry your baby would sweat.

In general, those parts sticking out of the carrier or a wrap (as they are also a heat layers), should be covered the best, i.e. legs, arms and a head. Various high boots (soft-shell, fleece, etc.) are proved to be very efficient, as well as wool leg slips.  For hands, use simple mittens or gloves and for a head, a hood (soft-shell, fleece, merino, combined, etc.), which will nicely cover baby’s forehead, ears and neck, sometimes even the shoulders is very popular.

When getting dressed, follow a simple rule, dress your baby in one layer more than you would wear yourself! If you wear an extension, protecting cover or babywearing jacket, Baby won’t be cold.

Favorite version is thin fleece overalls, which you put on undress. It’s important that overall has enough space or openings for legs, so it won’t be pulling the baby when Baby sits up.

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