Guide: Choose the right summer or winter sleep sack

November 15 2022
Guide: Choose the right summer or winter sleep sack

Family doctors, pediatricians and other experts agree that babies should sleep in completely empty cribs, except for a mattress or fitted sheet. Blankets, comforters and quilts can potentially suffocate or overheat babies, leading to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).

Many parents, however, are concerned that their babies will be cold, uncomfortable, or restless without a blanket. That is why it is recommended that parents use sleep sacks. Newborn sleep sacks and sleep sacks for babies are the safest and best options to keep infants comfortable while sleeping. 

It is important to keep in mind that babies should have several sleep sacks available depending on the season, the temperature of their nurseries, and preferences, which can be determined if they wake up often and cry or perspire a lot.

We’ve put together this handy guide so that you can choose the best summer and winter sleep sack for your baby.

Sleep sack materials

Sleep sacks for babies, also known as wearable blankets, help to regulate your baby’s temperature and keep them both calm and comfortable. 

What are the best materials for baby sleep sacks in the winter and summer? It depends above all on the material as well as your personal liking.

Cotton sleep sacks

If you prefer using all-natural materials, organic cotton sleep sacks for babies are great for your baby, particularly in the summer or if they are often too warm. Organic cotton is extremely breathable, which allows heat to escape your baby’s body during the warm months. Cotton sleep sacks for babies are perfect  if their body temperature is high. Cotton sleep sacks are also durable, soft and ideal for infants with sensitive skin.

Bamboo sleep sacks

Bamboo sleep sacks for babies are also durable and breathable; however, they have a silkier and even softer feel than cotton. Bamboo sleep sacks tend to be more absorbent, wicking moisture away very quickly. As a top-rated material for summer sleep sacks, bamboo is also antimicrobial, which helps to reduce excess moisture and bacteria .

Muslin sleep sacks

Muslin sleep sacks for babies are one of the most popular options for the summer. Muslin is a lightweight, breathable and comfortable fabric made from loosely woven cotton. Like organic cotton and bamboo, muslin  is easy to care for. It allows air to flow freely so that your baby doesn’t overheat. And also like bamboo and organic cotton, this material will keep your baby comfortable and snug. Another summer hit!

Plush and velour sleep sacks

Plush and velour sleep sacks for babies are the preferred choices for the winter months or if your baby is always cold. Your baby will stay comfortable and warm, without ever overheating. Look for a sleep sack company that offers baby sleep sacks made out of recycled plastic bottles with a mix of polyester. Velour sleeping bags are made of polyester to add warmth, ease of care and comfort. Polyester, although a synthetic material, also speeds up drying time and allows a greater variety of textures and colors in the designing process

Other materials for sleep sacks

While the sleep sack materials we mentioned above are the best for newborn and baby sleep sacks, other products on the market are also available, such as merino wool, hemp, rayon, linen and broadcloth. Be sure to check for ease of breathability, maintenance, feel and price tag.

Thermal Overall Grade (TOG)

What is the Thermal Overall Grade (TOG)  of a sleep sack for babies? How does the TOG affect the summer and winter sleep sacks you choose for your newborn and infant?

In a nutshell, the TOG is a universal unit of measurement that quantifies the thermal index of a product—or the quantity of air that passes from a textile from inside outwards.

A rule of thumb to remember when shopping for the best seasonal sleep sacks for your little one is the following:

  • The higher the TOG, the warmer the sleep sack will be (cozier for the winter months)
  • The lower the TOG, the more air that will pass through the sleep sack (lighter and more breathable for the summer  or warmer babies)

Unfortunately, you should not choose your winter and summer sleep sacks based on the TOG index alone. It also depends on the nursery’s temperature. Also, remember that it is better for your baby to be a little bit cool (cooler hands and feet) rather than too hot. Check your baby’s temperature on a regular basis by feeling the nape of their neck. If it is dry, your baby should be fine. If the nape is damp, your baby may be overly warm. 

Another factor affecting your baby’s temperature as they sleep is what they wear underneath their summer or winter sleep bags. In the summer, dress your baby in just a diaper or sleeveless bodysuit before putting on the sleep sack. In the winter, you may prefer a long-sleeve bodysuit or long jammies.

Here is a handy table that can guide you as you shop for summer and winter sleep sacks for your baby.

What to wear underneath the sleep sack

Perlimpinpin baby sleep sacks

Perlimpinpin baby sleep sacks, designed in North America, can be categorized into three main TOG levels, which also correspond to nursery temperature levels and whether they are better for summer or winter.

  • Lightweight sleep sacks offer all the features you need for the best baby sleep sack for summertime.
  • Universal sleep sacks provide some flexibility for transitional seasons, like spring and fall, or if your baby needs some added warmth.
  • High-TOG sleep sacks take the effort out of finding the right winter baby sleep sack or sleep sack for babies who tend to be regularly cold.

Choosing the top sleep sacks for your baby in summer, winter and every season in between doesn’t have to be complicated. Your baby is actually the best indicator of just how warm or cool they want to be when they sleep!

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