How to Dress Baby to Keep them Warm in Winter


The simple rule of thumb for dressing a young baby is “Plus One”: Your newborn/infant needs the same number of layers as you, plus one extra layer!

Layering is the best way to keep your baby warmly dressed during the winter months as layers help trap heat between the fabrics. Try starting with thin cotton as their base layer and adding to that as needed. Primary has a ton of wonderful options for simple, colorful and basic layering options, check out their “cozy” section today! 

Bunting Outfits

You can utilize these easy zip full-coverage ‘bunting’ for really young kiddos. This kind is even more like a cacoon! My husband has been known to stick our wee ones in these to go for a walk or run around the neighborhood in the cold early mornings as they are easy and efficient head-to-toe coverage. They should be used over baby’s layering clothing and you might need to add a hat or other element protection depending on the weather! 

Stroller Blankets 

If you are headed out of the house with your stroller or car seat, use a cozy stroller blanket to help layer your baby or toddler while they are staying put in one place. Blankets are an easy way to keep babies warm, while controlling temperature. Having a spare stroller blanket in your car is always recommended! You never know. 

Using blankets instead of tons of layers might help if you are moving from the outdoors to the indoors regularly and don’t want to wake your child when you need to remove layers to control their temp.

Stroller Buntings Footmuffs 

Multi-season stroller bunting like this Waterproof Extendable Baby Bunting Bag or this Waterproof Melange Stroller Footmuff  are super great ways to keep your little ones warm and dry during the winter months when you are out and about. Most stroller bunting are made with a waterproof outer layer and a warm and cozy interior layer. They are made to “fit any stroller” though if you already have something like the UppaBaby, it might be wise to just go with their specific bunting product for the perfect fit. You can find that here: UPPAbaby CozyGanoosh. Otherwise, search around for something that you like best like the Skip Hop Stroll and Go Three-Season Footmuff. For more on these products visit my post here

Hats, Mittens & Socks 

Young kids and babies need to be fully covered in cold weather. If you are debating a hat or mittens for yourself, they for sure need them. Primary has some really sweet, simple and basic mittens and hats for babies and toddlers, while you can find quite a variety elsewhere like these with warm fleece lining and ear covering or these sherpa style warm hats. If you live somewhere super cold/wet/snowy or plan to go skiing – you should be considering ski mask style hats (or this style!) that help cover your toddler’s face from frostbite. Playful toddlers might need waterproof mittens for outings, while young babies can simply go with regularly lined warm mittens

Sleep Sacks 

Keeping babies warm at night is also important. You can use an extra layer of clothing, like putting a long sleeve onesie underneath their regular pajamas, or adding an extra layer of soft and simple leggings to their nighttime attire. Try to keep the temperature in their room between 68-72 degree Farhenheit. Utilizing a sleep sack is also one of the very best ways to keep your child warm and safe during the colder winter months. Remember that infants cannot sleep with loose blankets in their cribs, so consider sleep sacks is a perfect option for both infants and toddlers. Also, even if your child is over one years old and can happily use a blanket now, chances are, it doesn’t stay on throughout the night. Instead, you can get warm, bulky and super cozy down sleep sacks for almost every age and size (0-6m, 6-18m, 18-36m). This amazingly soft quilted sleep sack also comes in three sizes and is perfect for cold weather. Lastly, this Aden winter sleep sack comes in a variety of prints and shapes for everyone! 

Stroller Shields

Using a weather shield on your stroller is a great idea for venturing out into the element. Not only do shields keep your baby safe from the wetness of snow, sleet and rain, but they block wind and help keep heat in. Check out the UppaBaby Rumble Seat Shield, or the protector for the rumble seat on the Baby Jogger or BOB! This Comfy Baby Universal Deluxe Twin Stroller Weather Protector is compatible with tons of other stroller shapes and sizes (and same here: LaChaDa Stroller Cover Weather Shield ). 

Car Safety 

Remove your child’s bulky snowsuit, coat or other thick layers when you are strapping them into their car seat harness. In the event of an accident, bulky clothing prevents your child’s car seat from fully doing its job since there is too much space between the harness and their bodies. To protect them well, ensure bulky items are removed when getting to the car and harness are tightly fitted to their body. 

Overheating Prevention & Safety

Dressing your child in too many layers of clothing can also be dangerous. Pay attention to your child and reassess their layers, blankets, stroller shield, etc. regularly. At night, you want to keep your babies warm but not hot. Overheating puts your baby at a greater risk for SIDS. Never leave your baby sleeping in multiple layers of heat and protection once you return home from the elements – bringing your child inside will immediately begin warming them up. Remove clothing and blankets as necessary and child on them regularly. 

Suffocation Prevention & Safety

Young babies should never be left alone to sleep with loose blankets or other materials. Use well-fitting and safe products specifically designed for their age and read the directions.