Our Top 5 Thin Winter Coats for Toddlers & Buying Guide
Photo by Michael Podger
If it’s your little one’s first winter or has outgrown their old winter coats, it’s time to buy new ones. Thin winter coats for toddlers are ideal as it provides warmth without the extra puff that may limit their movements. And with various materials, design, construction, and options, it’s quite difficult to find which one is suitable for your child.
For this post, we reviewed five of the best options, together with a comprehensive buying guide to help you find the right one.
1. Columbia Girls’ Katelyn Crest Jacket
For little girls, you can consider getting the Columbia’s Girls’ Katelyn Crest Jacket. It’s made of a polyester shell, nylon lining, and polyester insulation. Overall, it has a 240 GSM synthetic insulation for the best heat retention.
The hood area comes with faux fur lined with taffeta for added comfort. It’s also adjustable to suit the head size of your toddler. In front, there’s a durable full-zip zipper closure to keep it snug on your child. We also like that the sleeve has an extra layer to fit little wrists properly. Also, it comes with zippered hand pockets to secure little things like candies.
- COMFORTABLE WINTER JACKET: The Columbia Girl’s Katelyn Crest Jacket are available in a wide range of colors and makes for a toasty winter shell she'll love to wear on super chilly days.
- WINTER PARKA STYLING: This stylish winter coat comes with a faux fur trimmed hood. The cozy fur trim is just snuggly fun, and is removable, tucking away neatly into any pocket when no longer needed.
Aside from that, the coat is machine-washable and available in a variety of colors. You can also get one in adult size to fit older children. Actually, if you’re a petite woman, this jacket will fit perfectly to you.
All of this looks good if you deem the design paramount in choosing the coat you’re going to buy for your child.
This will suit your child if your area doesn’t get temperatures below 32F. Overall, it’s warm, cozy, and comfortable, but for extremely cold places, you still need to layer up with this jacket. Still, this is thick and considerably warm.
Take note, though, that the waist area of this coat tapers in the middle, which can be a little snug on toddlers that are on a huskier spectrum.
Just a tip: make sure that you check the size of the jacket. Columbia tends to have big differences in between sizes.
- Warm yet lightweight
- Adjustable hood
- Ideal for 32F temperatures only
2. Carhartt Boys Active Tafetta Quilt Lined Jacket
If you’re looking for chic and thin winter coats for your little ones, we recommend the Carhartt Boys Active Jacket. It’s made of 100% washed duck cotton and a quilted flannel lining. You can also get this in a taffeta quilted lining, whichever suits your child well. This is moisture-resistant and warm, as long as your kid won’t stay in the snow for too long.
Aside from that, this comes with a full-zip enclosure as well as ribbed-knit cuffs and waistbands. There’s also a kangaroo pocket in front. All these keep the wind off your child’s wrists and hands.
- Washed-duck cotton active jacket with hood and zip front featuring split kangaroo pocket and ribbed-knit cuffs and waistband
- Quilted flannel lining
We also like that it comes in different colors like the Carhartt brown, asphalt, dark tan, mustang brown, and ivory green. Also, it has an attached hood with the same lining as the whole jacket.
What we really like the most about this Carhartt jacket is it fits true to size. And although it’s advertised as a body’s jacket, it will surely fit little girls as well. It’s also an excellent choice for rowdy toddlers that love rolling around. If your toddler outgrows it, your younger kids can still have the chance to wear this durable coat. It can be handed down to generations, making this a wise buy.
It may appear stiff at first, but a good washing should soften up the fabric. Also, the new Carhartt jackets now come with a sewn-in tag where you can write your contact number and your child’s name. This is a big plus if you take your child outdoors.
- Very thick and durable
- Free replacement if the jacket arrives damaged
- Comes with a sewn-in tag
- No string on the hood
3. Carhartt Girls Sherpa Lined Redwood Jacket
If you like the quality of Carhartt and looking for a jacket for your little girl, try their Redwood Sherpa Lined Coat. This is also made from 100% cotton with durable zipper closure.
What we like here is the Sherpa lining that makes it very soft and warm for toddlers. It also comes with triple-stitched seams to ensure that the jacket can take the beating of winter. Aside from that, it has hidden cuffs and wrist fitting to keep the wind off your child’s arms.
- Hooded jacket designed for warmth and comfort with sherpa lining in body and quilted taffeta lining in sleeves
- Weather-shielding drop tail hem and large pouch pocket
In front, there’s a large kangaroo pocket as well as a drop-tail hem for added weather shielding. There’s also an internal pocket with a name tag where your toddler can stash little whatnots. There’s also a lined hood sewn with elastic on the hems to keep it on while your child walks or plays.
The good thing here is that this Redwood jacket comes in a wide range of sizes that can fit older kids. It’s also available in a variety of colors to suit what your child prefers. And even if it’s marketed for girls, we think that it can also fit most little boys.
Although it’s thinner than most puffers, this jacket is comfortable for toddlers on the weeks leading to winter and the days after. It’s also very soft and won’t irritate your child. It also looks cute on toddlers. If your place gets really chilly, the jacket is roomy enough to fit a sweat under it.
Take note that some buyers recommend purchasing a size or two up. If your kiddo is on a bigger size, consider doing the same thing.
- Very soft lining
- Durable and warm
- Available in a wide range of sizes
- We wish there’s a drawstring for the hood
4. Amazon Essential Girls’ Hooded Puffer Coat
If you’re looking for a thicker jacket for your toddler, consider getting the Amazon Essentials Girls’ Hooded Puffer Coats. It’s made of polyester and ideal for cold temperatures with little snow. Also, it has a full-zip closure and overlay snap buttons to keep the jacket snug. The zip closes smoothly up to the chin for utmost protection from the cold.
What we also like about this jacket is its fleece-lined material that’s soft and excellent in retaining heat. You can also machine wash this for easy cleaning after a long day outdoors.
- A water-resistant, fleece-lined puffer coat featuring a snow skirt, reflective zipper and a stretch cuff with thumb hole to protect hands in the winter months
- Everyday made better: we listen to customer feedback and fine-tune every detail to ensure quality, fit, and comfort
Aside from the warm material, this jacket also comes with a thumbhole to protect your child’s hands during very cold months. It fits well on any mittens, so you have nothing to worry about.
This is available in a variety of colors like navy blue, heather grey, and pink. However, take note that the lining is only in pink and no other color.
We also dig the water-resistant nature of the polyester shell. It can withstand snow and a drizzle without getting into your child’s skin. Overall, it will keep your kid warm during winter, plus this jacket suits almost all pants.
Overall, it’s a solid and trusty coat that your little girl will love. And if your kid needs to layer up, this jacket provides enough room for a sweater beneath. This is also great for kids with sensory problems who tend to get irritated by garments easily.
- Comes with a thumbhole
- Double closures
- Limited color options for the lining
5. OshKosh B’Gosh Winter Jacket with Sherpa Lining
If the winter in your area gets really bad each year, you might as well get your toddler the OshKosh b’Gosh Winter Jacket. This comes with a durable Sherpa lining and a polyester shell. This is a solid puffer that comes with an equally durable front zip closure.
This has woven teddy Sherpa up to the hood for maximum warmth. Even if it’s thick, this jacket is machine washable and easy to clean. This sports a fully insulated body and functional pockets for extra storage.
- Heavyweight jacket coat
- Color block puffer coat with attached hood, sherpa in hood lining, fleece lined upper body and 2 pockets
We also like that this is available in a range of fancy colors and prints. This way, you can choose which one your child likes the most.
This OshKosh B’Gosh Winter Jacket is also water-resistant and can endure snow and light rain. Also, you may need to purchase a few sizes up as some buyers complain about the sizing being smaller than usual. Nevertheless, if you have a huskier and shorter toddler, this winter jacket fits well.
Take note that this is made for very cold winters. If you’re looking for something that’s made for milder temperatures, this could be a little hot for your toddler. Judging with the OshKosh’s quality, you’ll never be disappointed with this purchase.
- Thick Sherpa lining
- Fully insulated body and hood
- Sizing is a bit tricky
Buying Guide & Tips
Winter coats come in different sizes and types. It’s important to get one that suits your toddler’s needs.
Rain jackets are the most common. It’s ideal for cold, rainy days since it’s often combined with fleece. It also protects your child from wind chill and can be comfortable to wear all day. However, if it’s starts to snow, your child will need more than just a rain jacket.
On the other hand, you have the option to purchase lightweight jackets. This is a combination of fleece and another lightweight material that helps fight the chill on the last few days of winter. It’s also useful if mornings are cold and your child needs an extra layer to cozy up.
Moreover, fleece jackets are typically used during chilly winters. Many manufacturers use Sherpa fleece for the best heat retention. Depending on your choice, this can come with extra insulation to protect your child for lower temperatures. It’s also available in either full-zip or quarter-zip.
Lastly, there are softshell jackets. This is similar to fleece jackets, but it only offers mild insulation as well as wind and rain protection. During chilly winter days, this type of jacket doesn’t offer the best warmth.
Regardless of the type of jacket, you’ll choose, it may or may not come with a layer of insulation. Usually, it boils down to two types: the down and synthetic insulation.
The down insulation among winter coats work by trapping the warm air to retain body heat. It’s also lightweight and easy to pack, especially for a long trip. Down insulated jackets are also known as puffers and very popular among those on a budget.
However, you should know that down insulated jackets don’t dry easily. Also, it’s best for casual wear and activities that won’t require you to be in contact with a lot of snow.
On the other hand, we have the synthetic insulated coats. This provides excellent warmth, though heavier and more difficult to pack than down-insulated counterparts. Nevertheless, if you’re staying outdoors for a long time and performing strenuous tasks, you might as well purchase this type of coat. For toddlers, this may not be necessary as they are best kept indoors during the winter season.
Wool is one of the most sought-after materials in winter coat. It’s moisture and flame-resistant and it offers the best warmth. However, you have to be careful with wool might not always be healthy, especially for kids with a severe allergy.
You can also look for a combination of nylon, fleece, and polyester for added moisture-resistant benefit. Nylon toddler coats may have down insulation or wool for added warmth.
If you are to get polyester, make sure that it’s blended with other materials. A standalone polyester jacket can’t stand up to extreme cold.
For kids, you can look for tweed for a variety of color options. Faux fur is also great, but it could be painful to clean.
Winter coats need to keep snug while your child is outdoors. This is why you should look for one with zippers, buttons, snaps, and other closures that keep the jacket intact. For toddlers, durable zippers and a Velcro overlay would be enough to keep them warm during the winter season.
Almost all winter jackets come with thumbhole cuffs. If you are looking for a toddler winter jacket, make sure that it has a thumbhole cuff as it will allow you to adjust the sleeves without limiting your child’s hand movements.
Size (hood and fit)
Sizing is everything when purchasing any type of clothes. To get the proper fit, compare your child’s measurements with the sizing chart of the manufacturer. You can also try the hug test. Zip the coat up and ask your child to wrap his or her around on his shoulders. If the kid finds it hard to reach each side, you should look for a bigger size.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How should I dress my baby for snow?
A: Layer up as much as possible. Babies can wear thin jackets topped with a onesie or layers of blankets. Never bring your infant outdoors to prevent the potential damage of the cold weather.
Q: Is polyester good for winter?
A: When it comes to thin winter coats for infants, polyester is a great material together with other warm fabrics. It allows heat buildup from the inside so your little one will stay for a long time. It’s also great in heat retention, even for adult winter coats.
Q: Should you buy a coat a size bigger?
A: Many recommend getting a coat one size bigger. This will give your body enough space to retain heat, while making sure that your child can use the same coat for next year’s winter. However, avoid getting winter coats as it will be too baggy and uncomfortable to wear.
Q: At what temperature should a child wear a winter coat?
A: If it’s between 30 to 40F and it’s very snow, your child must wear winter jackets complete with mittens and a hat. This is to protect their young skin from frostbite and injuries. If the temperature goes down below 30F, a toddler must wear winter boots and other snow gears.
Q: Do toddlers get colder than adults?
A: Children lose body heat faster than adults that’s why they are prone to becoming too cold during winter. And since they have a prominent surface-to-mass ratio, toddlers are also prone to cold stress which could be very dangerous if not addressed right away.
Q: Can toddlers wear winter coats in car seats?
A: As much as possible, don’t let your toddler wear the winter coat underneath the car seat harness. In this case, the harness will become loose and won’t be effective during a crash. Nevertheless, some winter jackets are made to fit most car seats.
Winter coats for toddlers are helpful in keeping them out of the harsh cold weather. Just make sure that you pick the right one with the material and construction suitable for your child. Also, you have to ensure that your child is comfortable in it, regardless of how good the jacket looks. Besides, it’s your child who will wear the winter coat for the next months.