Best Winter Gear for Kids for 2021-2022
Every year I like to pull together a round-up of the gear we are using and our thoughts on it. If you live in a cold climate, quality winter gear for kids is essential to have for both safety and comfort reasons.
This post will be updated throughout the winter of 21-22 as we continue to test new gear this winter, so check back often!
Don’t miss these winter gear for kids coupon codes!
I know that finding outdoor gear for your family can be a huge expense. My hope is the coupons below will help a little. You’re also welcome to post ISO and B/S/T in our Outdoor Family Chat Facebook group.
Also be sure you are signed up for our newsletter where we often share exclusive coupon codes. Sign up to receive our emails here.
- Ella’s Wool: “Tales89” for 10% off
- Iksplor base layers: “mtnmama20” for 20% off
- Reima gear: “mtnmama” for 20% off
- Shred Dog Gear: Use code “MTNMAMA25” for 25% off or “MTNMAMA35” for 35% off orders over $400
- Stonz: Use code “mtnmama” for 15% off
- WeeDo Fun Snowsuits: GO HERE and use code “mtnmama” for 15% off
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, we earn from qualifying purchases.
Best Base Layers for Kids
Base layers really are SO important for warmth from the inside out. We’re big fans of wool thanks to their cooling/heating properties which make them ideal for year-round use.
We consider them a staple when we are highlighting the best winter gear for kids….because warmth starts from the inside OUT.
But, I also included our favorite poly-pros too (which are awesome when it’s super cold out!)
>>>Use code “mtnmama20” for 20% off!<<<
This brand is a local one to us here in Jackson, WY and we LOVE them. They are just barely thicker than Wee Woollies and are thinner than Ella’s Wool, but also seem to hold up longer without holes in our testing. Our kids wear them nearly daily year-round for pajamas and base layers and they show no wear.
They are very soft, are easy wash and dry and fit great! I would say the fit is similar to Wee Woollies (below) – on the slim side. In our years of testing, I think they they are slightly more durable than the Wee Woollies (again, listed below).
I also love that the baby sizes have hand covers that fold off the sleeves. Brilliant for maximized warmth for baby.
Available in baby sizes 0-24 months and kids aged 2-12.
They also have neck gaiters and beanies available for kids and adults. Of all the wool beanies we have tried, these are my favorites. They stay on well, keep heads warm and fit under helmets.
These are a lighter weight wool, but ideal for most conditions and super soft on the skin. Our kids wear them for base layers and pajamas too. In fact, sometimes we will go days before I realize they haven’t changed them – whoops!
Oh and they can be thrown in the washer AND dryer with no issues – laundry queen score!
Ella’s Wool base layers are slightly thicker than Wee Woollies and Iksplor base layers, and incredibly soft. I especially love their baby hat – perfect for a tighter fit that won’t pop off. Available for kids aged 3 mo – 12 years.
They also wash very well and are more durable than Wee Woollies for long-term wear.
Use code “Tales89” for 10% off when shopping on their site.
The Shred Dog Foundation base layers could really be either a next-to-skin base layer or a mid layer (my kids layer them on top of their Iksplor wool on really cold days.)
They are very high quality, super soft, warm, and wear well. My kids have been wearing them a few times a week for over a year now and they show no wear.
The Foundation base layer bottoms also make awesome every-day leggings for girls.
Stripes are poly-pro and awesome for kids who aren’t a fan of wool. They dry much quicker than wool (really almost instantly) and are soft too (though admittedly not as soft as the wool). I think they are slightly warmer too. See our full review here.
My biggest gripe with Stripes is that you really can’t dry them in a dryer. They tend to shrink and lose their softness, so be sure to hang dry only. Truth be told, if you don’t have to wash them, don’t!
Waldo Thermal underwear are a lightweight base layer. Specially designed with no seams, they are comfy and do not cause rubbing or chaffing with movement. They are moisture wicking and quick drying so you can get back to play quickly.
Best Warm Socks for Kids
Don’t skimp on socks! They can seriously mean the difference between feet staying warm and frostbite or at least serious discomfort. If temperatures are cold, your kids (and babies!) NEED wool socks.
It’s very important that socks fit snug, but aren’t too tight to allow for good circulation and warmth. Avoid cotton socks at all costs, and choose wool or a wool blend instead.
It’s also important to remember that adding multiple layers of socks does NOT guarantee warmth since that can cut off circulation. Its best to just choose a well-fitting sock in a warm boot.
I love these socks for myself and think they are perfect for kids too. And the XS fits a preschooler (about a size toddler 6+). They hold up very very well and come with a lifetime guarantee! There’s a wide range of styles for kids available at Biddle & Bop.
Darn Tough makes incredible durable socks and their kids line is no exception. We love the fun designs and their guarantee! These are our top choice particularly for tall ski socks.
Woven Pear Wool Socks for Toddlers and Big Kids
Finding great wool socks for toddlers that fit well and keep them warm is really challenging. These Woven Pear socks are great for toddlers and come in a sizes 1 year – 10 year. They are lighter and have less pile than like Farm to Feet, but still are much better than cotton socks.
One thing to note is the toddler socks have grippers on the bottom of them for no slip, which can be tougher with layering in boots. However, most kids have no issues with them.
Best Mid Layers for Kids
Mid layers are the part of the layering that really can be “fudged” more than any other layer. Fleece, down, or wool is best, but it doesn’t need to be top of the line or super technical to be effective.
Here in Wyoming we opt for mid layers on the coldest of days or if we are layering for long days in the cold and want to be able to remove or put on more gear as the temperature changes.
The options below are our favorite mid layers. I also recommend checking out our post on best puffy jackets for kids for more options than we have room to outline below.
Available in sizes 4-16, the interior of the jacket is grid fleece which helps with warmth and wicking. The outer part of the jacket is a smooth jersey which makes it easier for layering too. This is my kids’ favorite fleece by far.
We love the zippered pockets for stashing snacks and extra gloves.
Available in sizes 4 – 16, we love this puffy jacket without the bulk. It can attach to the Elementor Shell for a full jacket system.
Our favorite wool pants for layering. The kids usually wear them over Wee Woollies on super cold days. They roll up easily and are super soft and comfortable! I just wish they came in bigger than a size 8 kids! Again use code “Tales89” for 10% off!
This jacket is really available for all sizes from infant to adult and is the perfect mid-layer when you just need a little extra boost of warmth.
I also love it because kids can wear it safely in car seats thanks to a low-loft design that still keeps them warm. Also available in a reversible version with a hood (which I prefer!)
Best Winter Jackets for Kids
Good jackets keep the wind and moisture at bay, breathe well and let kids move freely.
We love the Shred Dog shell – it’s completely waterproof, has great pockets and THE best hood out there for fitting over helmets. It’s also soft and pliable and isn’t noisy when kids move – perfect for children with sensory challenges.
As far as I know, they are the only shell that has pit zips for kids, which is particularly helpful for XC and backcountry skiing and warm days on the slope. This is truly the shell that can do anything.
Check out their insulator that works as a system with the shell.
I continually am so impressed with Obermeyer, especially as a ski brand.
Their jackets are warm, have an “I-grow” feature to extend the wearability as your child grows and lots of ski extras like mitten clips built into the cuffs.
They’re durable too and come in bright colors to help your kids stand out on the ski slopes (all the better to find them!) I truly recommend any of their ski jackets.
This down jacket really and truly is an all-mountain jacket. Kids (including our kids) wear them to school, on the ski hill, for XC skiing, around town and playing outside. We got our son one a little big and he literally wore it for 4 years.
It fits well, has a great hood and keeps kids warm. I am actually planning to get myself one this year too.
It’s down so requires a bit more care, but can always be fixed with Noso patches too….
>>For everything Reima use code “mtnmama” for 20% off!<<
Reima Ski Pants are 100% waterproof, reinforced and hold up to lots of hard play. I love that they come in bright designs and colors, have removable suspenders and have lots of adjustments to get the right size. See styles for more fitted or wider leg styles.
Shred Dog’s bibs are super unique because of a couple things:
- Their Adjust-a-Fit allows to lengthen AND shorten for the best fit for all kids in your family as they get passed down (or grown into)
- They are the only pants with a fully removable full bib.
Available for kids sizes 4-16, we love these bibs and find them of incredible high quality for the price. You can see our full review of them here.
We have had a pair of Obermeyer pants for a couple years now and they show no wear at all. They are super durable, fit over ski boots very well and are warm without being bulky. Adjustable straps and waist for a great fit.
They include Obermeyer’s “I grow” system which gives you an additional 2″ on the length when needed. Only downside is they do not have shoulder strap releases, which would make bathroom breaks easier.
Have a kid that hates bib snowpants? Yea, me too. These suspender pants have Columbia’s signature omni-heat insides (that really does work!).
We also love their “Outgrown System” which allows you to get another year or two as you extend the cuffs.
Warm Snowsuits for Kids
If you want your kid to stand out on the ski hill, these are what you want! Not only are they creative and cute, but they are also solid as far as construction and details. For the first time, they are now available for purchase in the US.
These are also the only snowsuits for kids we know of that has a zipper at the waistline to make potty breaks super easy. GAME-CHANGER!
Available in size 18 months – 10 years.
Features we love about WeeDo:
- helmet compatible hood with special grips to keep the hood on over the helmet
- hem lift system so they don’t drag
- 100% recycled insulation
- Snow skirts
- Toilet system for easy potty breaks!
Also don’t miss their matching mittens which are also super warm and durable.
>>For everything Reima use code “mtnmama” for 20% off!<<
Reima is another brand nailing the insulated, fully waterproof suits. I was so shocked when testing this one (and really all Reima gear) that they were staying warm in super wet, cold and slushy conditions. This may very well be THE warmest snowsuit you can buy for kids.
Also check out the Aapua for babies and toddlers, made with responsible down feathers.
As far as shell suits (with no insulation) go, this is our favorite hands-down. It is just thick enough to allow for a bit of warmth, is extremely well made, has a great hood, works for layering under if needed but also has a cinched waist for easy movement.
It’s not super packable (for like backpacking) but our go-to for everything else.
We love this snowsuit from Biddle and Bop! Firstly, it is effective at keeping kids warm: I have put our three-year old in this over merino wool and mid-layers for longer stints outdoors and have also just thrown it on over his pajamas for a shorter romp in the snow. In both cases he was perfectly comfortable in sub-freezing temperatures.
Unlike some other one-piece suits we’ve tried, this one is able to accomplish warmth without creating the “Michelin-man effect,” allowing my son to have freedom of movement and be able to hike and play unrestricted.
You can tell this suit was created thoughtfully, with little details like a soft-lined collar, lift-card pocket, and replaceable foot straps (they even include some replacement straps since that is sure to be the quickest place for wear and tear!).
This super high-loft bunting is perfect for kids that need warmth when you don’t need to worry about them staying dry (it’s not super water proof, though water resistant).
It’s fleece lined and has fold over hand and foot cuffs. In fact, the arms are a little on the long side to allow for tucking those hands in! My only gripe is the zipper doesn’t go all the way down a leg so getting them in is a little harder….
We had a different version of this for J 8 years ago, and this one is even better. The hood stays on well, but allows for baby movement and it’s completely fleece-lined on the head and torso for happy babies! Plus, I love that it zips completely down a leg for easy in and out.
Also check out their Infant Powder Lite Reversible bunting if you prefer it to be a little less bulky and not fleece-lined.
The Oaki one-piece snowsuit is perfect for kids who like to go all in when it comes to playing in the snow. The one-piece, waterproof design means you don’t have to worry a lot snow and wet sneaking into gaps.
It’s super easy to get on, so you can get outside with minimal fuss.
Best Winter Boots/Shoes for Kids
The Reima Orm winter boots are my favorite boots for snowshoeing, winter hiking and winter play. They have great grip, are warm, and are easy to move in.
For neoprene boots, I have come to trust Muck first and foremost. The Hale is a favorite for year-round play with a comfort rating from sub-zero up to 65 degrees F (4 mm neoprene).
But for my son with bigger heels, the Rugged II is a much easier on and off boot and is a bit warmer (5 mm neoprene – comfort rated -20 – 50 degrees F). We also have found it has slightly better traction.
Bogs has really upped their boot game in the last couple years and we are very impressed. Quite honestly I always used to direct people elsewhere in general for neoprene boots. No longer!
The Neo-Classics are now 30% lighter (yes, we’ve noticed!), are warmer and have better traction.
While there are a ton of fantastic boots for kids out there, we have had the best luck with Stonz Trek Winter bootz (for sizes toddler 10 – Youth 6). They are super lightweight and incredibly warm (comfort tested by the company to -58 degrees F, by us to -25 degrees F). Only downfall is that after about 3 seasons, the soles are slightly worn down and don’t have as good of traction. That said, the kids have never complained about them.
Note: Stonz also carries the “Scout” boot for smaller kids. It is a good boot, but the opening allows snow in more than I like and my daughters tend to slip in them more than the boys do in the Trek.
Lone Cone is a one-woman-show and has great affordable gear for families. Check out our full review here!
For new walkers, I have found the Baby Bogs to be the warmest (I always use a thick wool sock with them) and easiest to put on and walk in.
Need more traction? We recommend the Bogs B-Moc.
Best Winter Mittens and Gloves for Kids
>>For everything Reima use code “mtnmama” for 20% off!<<
These are our current favorite mittens for kids. They are 100% waterproof, warm and stay on. Available for kids aged 1-10.
They also have gloves that we are testing this winter for the older kids who prefer gloves for dexterity over mittens.
Our entire family is huge fans of these 4-Season leather gloves (and mittens coming soon!) The XS size fits our 9 year old and they keep him very warm and dry. NOTE: They’re leather so they do need some working in to make them perfect.
Initials are burned into them to make sorting out the entire family’s pairs easy!
Mtn Papa has been fans of Kinco for years and years now for himself, but this year we are getting to try out their kid’s collection. The gloves/mittens range from lightweight work gloves to fully insulated mittens.
J says these ones are the warmest he owns (though the leather does get stiff in the cold/wet). They are great for skiing, working or just playing. Our boys love these for shoveling the driveway. Plus, they’re cheap and you’re not heartbroken if they get lost!
Warm, keep the snow out and are perfect for layering under on really cold days. Every kid in our family has multiple pairs and we depend on them for keeping their hands warm.
The infant mittz are thumb-less and good, though I do wish they were a little more supple for small hands and stuffing them in snowsuits 😉
Our top pick for toddlers. They are thumbless, but with a shape that allows for hand movement. We also love that they are soft on the outside which makes them more pliable in the cold too! Plus, the designs are super cute!
We choose Hestra especially for our bigger kids that start really needing gloves for skiing. They keep hands warm, stand up to a ton of winter abuse and let kids move. We have used and loved both the Heli Ski Jr and the All Mountain C-Zone.
If you have a constant struggle with mittens coming out of your kids jacket sleeves, then you need to check out some wrist gaiters! The AdventureUS Snow Stoppers are stretchy, comfy, and come in some awesome prints for every kid.
Gaiters are also an easy way to get a little more life out of that jacket or pair of mittens that might be getting to small.
The one-size-fits-all is best for school age kids. They were too big on a toddler and too small over big winter adult mittens. They were a great fit on a 4.5 year old. They are not waterproof, but do dry quick once back inside.
The fabric is USA milled and they are made in northern Wisconsin.
What are your kids wearing this winter? Questions about how to keep warm? Feel free to leave us comments!
- How to Layer Kids in Cold Weather
- Best Rain Gear for Kids
- Best Winter Boots for Kids
- Best Puffy Jackets for Kids
The Best Winter Gear for Kids to Stay Warm in 2021
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