My newest little addition was born on the coldest day of the year. As in single digit temperatures. In Georgia. To say that I was ill-prepared would be an understatement. In spite of my January due date, I never anticipated it would be that cold when it was time to bring baby home.
Thankfully, temperatures had climbed into the 30s by the time we left the hospital, but the situation made me consider whether we were properly equipped to take a newborn out into the cold. So when Walmart challenged me to share how we’re handling this unusually cold winter, I thought I’d share my top 6 cold weather essentials for babies:
1. Cozy Blankets
I found it almost impossible to find a coat to fit a newborn, and I knew a snowsuit would be overkill, particularly when traveling in the car. Infants overheat pretty easily, so warmth is best delivered in layers. When it’s really cold out, and the wind is icy, warm blankets are the Holy Grail of baby care. I’ve been dressing my little lady in layers, wrapping her in one warm blanket and using another to cover her car seat. All of these are easy to peel away once inside a warm car or building. I personally love this Garanimals zebra print fleece baby blanket. The pattern makes me smile, Juliza loves the cozy fabric, and it cost just $9.88. (aff)
2. Warm Hats and Socks
I would venture to say that all newborns will wear hats and socks, but during the winter, they’re really not optional even if you have an older baby. The challenge is finding both that will fit, and stay, on a brand new baby’s tiny hands and feet. My daughter has a habit of kicking off her socks, sometimes within mere seconds of me putting them on. These newborn socks from Gerber have a tight knit ankle, so they tend to stay in place better than looser knit socks that fold down. And when it comes to hats, be sure to buy the right size for your baby’s head. Juliza has a small head (good for mama, not great for fitting things). So it’s absolutely imperative that we buy newborn size hats like these cute ones from Gerber. (aff)
3. Swaddle Wrap or Sleep Sack
I hate the idea of my little one falling asleep in a cold sleeper without a blanket. But you can’t put a young baby to sleep with a blanket or any other type of loose bedding because of the risk of suffocation. When they’re a few days old, swaddling blankets work wonders for keeping them calm when sleeping. But Juliza likes to move her hands and legs, which means that no matter how secure the swaddle, it would eventually come undone. Instead, we switched to SwaddleMe wraps like this organic one for $12.39 from Walmart, which can be wrapped over the arms, or under them if your baby likes to use her hands like mine. We’ve also been using sleep sacks, which do not wrap as tightly, but still give her warmth throughout the night. For the moment, she prefers the swaddle, but when she’s a bit bigger, the sleep sacks will come in handy. (aff)
4. Moisturizing Skin Care Products
My own skin gets really dry in the winter, and Juliza’s skin was doing the same. It’s always a great idea to have some good, moisturizing baby lotion and ointment on hand. My favorites are from the Shea Moisture Baby product line. Their Raw Shea, Chamomile and Argan Oil lotion and head-to-toe ointment smell amazing, and they do a good job of keeping my little lady’s skin smooth and supple. (aff)
5. Wrap Carrier
I knew when I was pregnant that I wanted to take up babywearing this time around, but I never really thought about it in the context of keeping her warm. However, wearing your baby close to you is a great way to keep them not just calm, but cozy. This works well when we’re at home, but also when we’re out and about. In fact, she tends to sleep the whole time I’m wearing her, so it’s great for outings because she’s not fussy. My personal favorite is the Moby Wrap carrier, available for $48.79 at Walmart, because it’s extremely comfortable to wear and the weight is evenly distributed across your whole back and both shoulders and hips. (aff)
6. Nasal Spray and Aspirator
We’ve been using all the products above to keep Juliza warm since birth, but she still managed to develop a mild case of the sniffles. We obviously have no intention of giving her any medicine, but we do want to be able to ease her discomfort when she gets stuffy. The first line of defense is a good nasal aspirator, which does a great job of removing any loose mucus. But when that doesn’t help, we have some Little Remedies Little Noses saline nasal spray on hand to help loosen any secretions. We haven’t had to use it yet, but we’d rather have it and not need it than to wind up needing it, and not have it. (aff)
Did you have a winter baby? What are some of the products you relied upon to keep your little one warm and comfortable?
DISCLOSURE: As a participant in the Walmart Moms Program, I’ve received product samples and compensation for my time and efforts in creating this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.