Babywearing in Winter: Top Tips to Keep Yourself and Baby Warm
24 October 2019 | Admin
Babywearing in Winter: Top Tips to Keep Yourself and Baby Warm & Safe!
Wearing your baby in a sling, wrap or baby carrier can be a lifesaver on many days. It’s an easy way to keep your little one close, safe and content while going about your daily tasks. During the summer babywearing opens up an entirely new set of possibilities for you and your family. With your child securely strapped to your chest or back, you are not dependent on buggy-friendly paths and facilities. Instead, you are free to explore the world with your children and go wherever your feet may take you.
When the days get shorter and the temperatures drop many parents refrain from putting their kids in a carrier or wrap. The reason is almost always the same: What to wear on those chilly autumn and winter days out? Between puffy jackets, scarves, hats, and woolly jumpers there is a lot going on even without adding a baby carrier into the mix. However, babywearing is just as possible on cold days as it is in the summer sunshine!
With our top tips on babywearing in the winter, you will rock your sling during the coming cold season!
Babywearing in Winter: Methods
There are several different ways of wearing your baby during the cold months. Either close to you and wrapped up with your own coat, over your coat or with the help of layering without using any jacket on you or your little one.
Snuggly Underneath One Coat:
When you are carrying a newborn baby or an infant who can’t walk yet, you will probably find it a lot cosier to have him snug in the carrier underneath your coat. While your maternity coat or even your regular one might close without any problems over you and your newborn baby, as your little one grows you might need to invest in a babywearing jacket or a less expensive insert that can be attached to any jacket. You can also get special winter covers for some carriers, like the Ergobaby. Other great alternatives are capes, knitted cardigans, and ponchos, just size up and make sure there is enough of an opening around the neckline to accommodate your baby’s head. Whatever you choose, make sure it is made from a breathable and ideally waterproof material!
Especially, when opting for a front carry underneath your coat, you should stay away from long woolly scarves. All that thick fabric around your neck might obstruct your little one’s airways. Instead, keep yourself warm with a snug loop scarf made from a thin but warm cotton type material.
Over Your Coat for Quick Ups and Downs:
As soon as your little one starts to walk and move about independently, you are probably forever lifting them up and putting them back down to walk another few minutes, before they want to be carried again. This might be manageable at home, but on winter walks the constant Up and Down can be tiring, especially when it involves opening jackets, rearranging clothes and tying wraps. In that case, carrying your little one over your coat might be the perfect solution!
Buckle carriers or ring slings make these many changes of being carried and walking independently a little easier on you but also on your baby. The clasps on your Tula or Boba Carrier are opened and closed again securely within seconds and while your little one is exploring his surroundings on his own two feet you can just keep it hanging around your waist, ready to go!
Deciding on what to wear can be difficult when you know you will have a human warm water bottle strapped to you half the time. One thing you should avoid for both of you are puffy jackets and snowsuits, especially when made from slippery materials. The straps on your carrier might not be able to be adjusted securely due to the massive amount of buffering those jackets provide and even if you manage to adjust them, they are likely to slip from your shoulders when you start moving. Puffy snowsuits also prevent very young babies from sitting correctly in your baby carrier, which might result in their airways not being supported properly. The solution: Layering with warm, thin and breathable materials.
Babywearing in Winter: Clothes & Accessories
As mentioned above Layers are your best friend, when getting yourself and your child ready for a winter walk with your sling. While keeping in mind that you will keep each other warm with your body heat and that your babycarrier adds another layer to the clothes your little one is already wearing, choose clothes that will keep the exposed parts of the body warm. For your little one this means: a warm hat, leggings, leg warmers, tights, and an extra pair of socks. For you, it means pretty much the same. Your upper body will be kept warm by your child and your coat, so make sure to wear warm pants and maybe layer them with tights underneath on extra cold days. If you are breastfeeding be sure to choose a top or jumper that will make it possible to feed while wearing your baby. Again, opt for thin but warm and breathable fabric and if your child likes to walk part of the way himself bring a snuggly overall or even a snowsuit to put on when he is not being carried.
Tip: Leg warmers don’t just keep little legs warm, but can also be used over arms. They don’t just make your little one feel warm & cosy but can also help to keep gloves in place!
When you are babywearing in the winter your wardrobe choices are not just supposed to keep you warm but also safe. This starts with your shoes! Especially when it is super cold or wet, walkways might be slippery. Make sure your shoes are flat, comfortable and have a good grip. Surefootedness is especially important when you are carrying your baby in the front, as your view to the ground might be restricted. Choose even and well-developed paths for your walk to keep the possibility of obstacles as low as possible.
Avoid excess and bulky fabric on your chest and neck. This includes scarves as mentioned above but also thick woolly jumpers or cardigans. You should always be able to see your babies face and your little one’s neck should be free from things like soother chains or tie strings (as you sometimes find on hats or scarves).
3. Changing Bag
If possible, avoid carrying a bulky and full changing bag, when you are babywearing. Instead, opt for a lightweight backpack and just pack what you really need, e.g. one cloth nappy instead of four. Even if you usually carry your child on your back, a backpack carried on your chest is still the most comfortable solution.
If you are just heading out for a short stroll you can keep things like your phone or keys in a small over the shoulder bag. Just adjust the strap so you can wear the bag across your body over yourself and your baby. Many babycarriers, like the Tula Explore, for example, have a little bag on the waistband, where you can keep small essentials safe when you are out and bout.
Wear All the Babies this Winter:
If your child is the most content when close to you and just doesn’t like sitting in a buggy, you don’t have to stay indoors once the summer is over. Try different methods, clothes and maybe invest in a babywearing cover or even a full on babywearing coat to find out what works best for you! Once you found your groove, head out and enjoy this cold, slow and cosy season, the sounds of walking through freshly fallen leaves and the magic of taking a stroll through a snowy landscape!
Do you find babywearing easier, when heading out with your little one? What are your top tips for the colder days?