How to Dress a Newborn Baby for the Weather

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Dressing Your Baby—for Whatever the Weather

A mother’s love alone can’t protect your baby from the weather—neither can cute bunny outfits. Every mother likes to take baby out to show her off to other mothers and her friends and colleagues at work. But, not at the risk of exposing the little one to the scorching sun or the cold winter chill.

When it comes to protecting your baby from the weather, think layers – layers of clothing will help keep baby cozy and are easy to shed if it gets too warm. Always follow your gut to assess how many layers of baby clothes you need to have on hand to keep him comfortable. You also need to be careful not to give your baby a heat rash by adding too many layers. 

Here are a few tips to make sure you are doing what’s best for your newborn.

Wrapping the right way

1. Winter cover

This is the time when you must take the word “bundle” in Bundle of Joy literally. Wrap your baby in extra warm clothing. Babies don’t regulate their body temperatures as well as you do—so layer up more than you would for yourself. Layers trap the heat and keeps baby warm. Start with soft cotton clothes, to allow the skin to breathe and avoid irritation. You could swaddle your baby, if he is less than 6 months old.

For babies who have grown out of the swaddle phase, you can choose from a range of comfortable choices, like bodysuits or footies. For long-distance travel, carry a couple of sacks too, so that your newborn can have a comfortable nap. 

Remember: if you’re chilly, then your baby definitely is too! If you need mittens, a hat, thick socks and snow boots, make sure your little one has them on too. While stepping out, place a blanket over all these layers.  

If you are in a car, remove the heavy woollies, blankets, and even coats as they pose a safety hazard when strapped in the car seat. Caps, mittens, and basic clothing can stay on.

As for bedtime, you’ll want to avoid blankets and loose bedding all together as they increase the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Wrap your baby in suitable sleepwear, like a warm bodysuit or PJ with a footie or a sleep sack and maintain the nursery temperature between 68 and 72°F. These will keep your baby safe and snug.  

2. Summer protection

While the summer sun can overheat a baby’s body, it’s important to cover up as it can also burn your baby’s skin or lead to them getting painful rashes. You need to protect their skin, eyes and all body parts from direct heat and light—without overheating. Layers are still a great option—just make sure you’re using light, breathable fabrics like cotton, bamboo, or muslin so your baby will stay cool, but protected!

Indoors, dress your baby in loose-fitting, light-weight, cotton clothes that absorb perspiration well. Don’t forget to sprinkle your baby’s body generously with gentle, talcum powder to avoid rashes and irritation. 

When venturing outside, it’s best to dress your baby in light-colored, light-weight garments that cover the entire length of the body, including arms and legs. Top it off with a wide-brimmed hat or ball cap that shields the face. Don’t forget the UV shades for his little eyes. It may not be sunny outside, but the harmful rays penetrate the clouds just fine.

But when it is bed-time (nights are generally cooler than day time), don’t forget the light-weight sleepwear. These will keep them comfortable and cool. 

3. In-between temps

When it’s not too hot, but not too cold go by this simple rule-of-thumb: dress your baby in as many layers as you would wear to feel comfortable, then add an extra. Remember: the beauty of layers is you can always add or remove to accommodate a change in the weather.

Make sure that humidity doesn’t make your little one perspire or make his clothes uncomfortably wet— he could catch a cold. Check his diaper regularly and don’t leave behind his baby cap and UV sunglasses when outdoors.

No matter how the weather is, it’s best to make sure your child is well protected. If you aren’t sure about the layering, make on-the-spot adjustments, and if necessary, rush indoors where the temperature is more controlled.

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