Buying ski clothes for kids and packing properly for a family vacation is a challenge. You want to ensure that your children will stay warm in winter.
A comfortable day on the ski hill offers the possibility that kids might be eager to return for additional days of skiing. However, kids are less apt to zip up jackets or bear the discomfort of base layers and outerwear. Therefore, the planning stage is critical for the future enjoyment of a family ski trip. Follow these six packing tips for first time skiers!
Ski Clothes for Kids: Tips for First-time Skiers
Written by: Lily An Kim
Base layers may seem unimportant on regular winter days; but on the ski hill, the choice of base layer is essential to consider as you choose your ski clothes for kids.
Knowing the climate and terrain in which kids will traverse helps to decide the necessary base layer(s) for the occasion. Hot Chillys fit children in a variety of styles and colors, and Helly Hansen sells various base weights for every age category.
Three-quarter leggings are an ideal insulating layer to avoid the discomfort of tight ski boots overtop thick ankle-length base bottoms. Most base layers can be categorized as lightweight, midweight, and heavy weight.
Although smart wool or merino blends are a costly yet warm investment, they take longer to dry (and shrink easily) compared to synthetic blends of polypropylene.
Under Armour and Thermotech antimicrobial performance base layer tops—or even better, the coverage of a turtleneck or mock top—give parental peace of mind that kids may stay warm, even if they forget to zip their jackets.
Packing Tip: Merino wool socks and underwear are the best for comfort and dryness, and they help to limit odor, too.
Shells and Jackets
Different price categories of shells and jackets are available from multiple suppliers of performance wear. While L.L. Bean, Mobius and Spyder provide entry-level price points, they also offer stylish jackets for both sexes. Burton offers ski clothes for kids that prefer a husky fit, whereas Volcom is designed for thinner builds.
Learn more about layering for cold weather!
Mittens and Facemasks
Ski outerwear–especially gloves–should be water-resistant or Goretex, to guarantee comfort in every condition. For younger kids, Marmot mittens will keep little fingers toasty.
Burton is a particular brand that incorporates preventative safety, such as wrist guards, into waterproof gloves or skiwear for teens. Older kids will also like Air Hole, the authentic face mask company that provides wind-resistant protection to accompany ski goggles, yet prevent fogging of lenses.
While helmets and goggles will be essentials once on the mountain, poles and skis or snowboards should be personally labeled beforehand.
Helmets are also a good safety measure; POC helmets are suitably fitted to protect all sides of children’s heads. Giro makes helmets for all ages as well. Earbands and headbands that easily fit in jacket pockets will keep toddlers comfortable, while trudging to or from the ski lodge.
Travel Tip: Inner pockets of jackets can be stuffed with ski goggle cloths, a safety whistle, ski-locks and toe-/hand-warmers.
Clothing and Footwear
When planning ski clothes for kids, don’t forget a couple pairs of jeans or rain pants (over a base layer) to slip onto sore legs for après ski. They will love alternating hoodie sweatshirts and long-sleeved shirts under a vest to enjoy the evening after skiing.
You’ll also want to replace their ski boots with winter boots or sneakers and clean, dry socks. A swimsuit would also allow for a good diversion if a hot tub or swimming pool is onsite—perfect before bedtime with a familiar stuffed animal.
Babies will need at least one onesie and outfit per day, and a bunting bag or jacket with boots. Mountain Buggy Duet would give both baby and sibling (up to 5 years old) a lift from the slopes to wherever you’ll need to go, which will take a load off our your feet!
Travel Tip: A pack of cards or games will also help them pass the time while dining out and on travel days.
Skis and Boards
Renting skis is an easy way to travel with the whole family, but for longer trips, it’s only money-sense to pack individual skis. Burton and Patagonia manufacture durable, wheeled ski and board bags that can fit more than single sets of skis—each of which should be protected within a thin cover or sleeve.
For families that prefer Colorado mountains, rentskis.com delivers skis to lodging. It’s the easiest way to travel for the whole family.
What are the best ski clothes for kids and do you have any tips for first time skiiers? Comment below!
For more ski trip packing guides, please read:
- 5 Ski Trip Travel Gear Tips
- 10 Experts Help you Decide What to Pack for a Ski Trip
- Ski Trip Packing List for Fashionistas
- What to Bring on a Ski Trip
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Author Bio: Lily An is a Canadian educator and Vancouver-born nature enthusiast. When she isn’t working or traveling, she is likely to be skiing, diving, or mountain biking with her family.