The idea to pull winter jackets, warm hats, gloves does not bring joy to kids! Adults might enjoy looking cozy and layer up though. Dressing up your baby might be easy but it’s a struggle.

For some of us, we revel in cooler temperatures. The very idea of being able to pull out your winter jackets, boots and scarfs can bring joy. But for your kids, that might not be the case when they start walking and talking.  

You wouldn’t want your child to freeze like Anna in “Frozen” or look like Randy in “A Christmas story”, so sharing a few tips to keep the layers on and how much to keep on.

“You plus one” rule

Please dress them with one more layer than what you would feel comfortable.  Children have a higher ratio of surface area which mean they lose heat at a faster rate than adults. For example, if you have a coat and shirt on, then your child in the stroller needs that PLUS a winter blanket.  

Layering, Layering and Layering

Layers allow pockets of air between clothing layers to help trap heat and keep kids warm. Layering also allows kids to remove a jacket or sweater when they are too warm to avoid sweating. Start with a lightweight, moisture-wicking material (long johns), snug.  Add a second layer of insulation with low to medium weight fleece or a wool sweater. Last layer should be wind, snow, and rain protector.  

Warm Accessories

When it’s cold outside, your child’s head, ears, hands, and feet are most prone to cold exposure. Extremely cold weather can cause two potentially serious conditions such as extreme low temp of the body and at risk for frost bites. Always carry, boots, heavy socks, earmuffs, or hats.  

Infants less than 1 year of age should always be covering their head, as they lose significant amount of heat from their heads. For older children and toddlers, have them wear a hat and gloves when the weather is 40°F or lower.  

Remove the third layer for car rides

Children should never be placed in a car seat while in a puffy jacket or heavy coat. The heaviest jacket you should have on your child while they are in their car seat would be a medium weight fleece.

Know when it’s getting too cold

Red, rosy cheeks are cute but can be a sign of frost bite starting. Check for ears, fingers, cheeks and if starting to look red and feels cold then it’s time to get inside. This can be a sign that it’s getting too cold!  


Always check weather ahead of time, carry extra accessories and a jacket, stock up on hot chocolate!

Dr.Ravneet Dhaliwal