If you’re a new parent, I’m pretty sure you’ve googled “what should baby wear under swaddle or sleep sack,” leading you to this article.
Cause I sure did when I was a new mom! I lived with my in-laws before and it can be hot and humid in the morning and slightly cooling at night in their place.
So I was a little bit confused then about what my baby should wear. Especially when she needed her swaddle to be able to sleep well at night.
If you’re feeling worried if your baby is overheating or not, don’t worry, I’ve got you covered with the tips and guides in this article.
Let’s start with what you should consider before dressing and swaddling your baby.
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Key Points on Dressing Baby Under A Swaddle
If you’re in a hurry, here are the things you should take note of in this article:
When swaddling your baby, it’s essential to consider several factors to ensure their comfort and safety.
The clothing layers under the swaddle should be appropriate for the room temperature, ranging from just a diaper or short-sleeved onesie for warmer temperatures to a long-sleeved onesie or lightweight sleepsuit for cooler conditions.
Always check your baby’s skin to ensure they are neither too hot nor too cold.
If you have the time, let’s cover more of what to consider before dressing your baby under a swaddle.
Factors To Consider When Swaddling and Dressing Baby
Before you swaddle your baby, consider the following factors to determine the appropriate clothing layers:
Room Temperature and Humidity
The room temperature plays a crucial role in deciding how you should dress your baby.
You can use a room thermometer to gauge the temperature accurately. Especially if you have a younger baby.
Season or Temperature Outside
If it’s chilly outside, your baby might need more layers under the swaddle.
If it’s summer, your baby will need less clothing under their swaddle.
Swaddle’s Thermal Overall Grade (TOG)
TOG refers to the swaddle’s warmth level and how effective it can be to trap warm air close to the body.
TOG also takes into consideration the swaddle’s material, thickness, and construction.
If the swaddle has a higher TOG rating, that means it has more thermal insulation and it’s better suited for colder temperatures.
If it has a lower TOG rating, it’s more appropriate for warm temperatures.
But take note though that swaddle brands have different TOG ratings.
Check out some below:
- HALO Sleep Sack TOG ratings
- SNOO Swaddle TOG ratings
- Love to Dream Swaddle TOG ratings
- ErgoPouch Sleep Sack TOG ratings
Those TOG ratings should only serve as a guideline and you should consider other factors as well, such as how your baby feels to the touch.
How Your Baby Feels To The Touch
Feel your baby’s skin to check if they are too warm or too cold.
Feel the back of their neck, their back, and their chest.
That’s the best way to tell if your baby feels warm or cold.
Don’t base it on their hands or feet, as it’s pretty normal for babies to have cold hands or feet.
If their back or chest feels clammy or hot, then your baby is overdressed.
If they feel too chilly or too cold, then layer them or lower the AC’s temperature.
But take note that some babies can easily run hot or can run cold.
So adjust accordingly, depending on your baby.
What Should Baby Wear Under Swaddle or Sleep Sack
Here are some guidelines on how to dress your baby for a comfortable sleep, based on room temperature. Take note that some babies can get hot or run cold easily so take that consideration as well:
When Room Temperature is Warm (75°F to 81°F/ 24°C to 27°C)
If the temperature is a bit warm, a onesie may suffice. Just a short sleeve onesie or diaper underneath the swaddle or sleep sack will do.
When Room Temperature is Cool (72°F to 72°F/ 22°C to 24°C)
Consider dressing your baby in a cotton short sleeve onesie or long-sleeve onesie under the sleep sack or swaddle if you feel that the temperature is slightly cool yet still comfortable.
When Room Temperature is Chilly (Can Make You Shiver) (61°F to 68°F/ 16°C to 20°C)
In a mildly cold temperature, a baby in a short sleeve bodysuit/ romper plus a long-sleeved cotton sleepsuit/ romper OR just a short-sleeved or long-sleeved pajama should be comfortable underneath a swaddle or sleep sack, depending on how cold can your baby be.
When Room Temperature is Cold (<61°F/<16°C)
If it’s winter and the room is cold or freezing, it’s best to dress your baby in one more layer than you would wear in the same room.
You can add a long-sleeved onesie or pajama top underneath the swaddle.
Make sure that the swaddle is a bit thicker or has a higher TOG rating, to keep your baby warm throughout the night.
How Can I Make Sure My Baby Is Comfortable in the Swaddle or Sleep Sack?
To ensure your baby is comfortable in the swaddle or sleep sack, use a swaddle that isn’t too tight, has a soft, comfortable material, and is appropriate for room temperature.
Check your baby for signs of discomfort or overheating regularly.
Can a Baby Get Too Hot in a Swaddle?
Yes, a baby can get too hot in a swaddle. Overheating is a concern, so always monitor your baby’s temperature.
Make sure to check the swaddle’s TOG rating as well, if it’s suitable for room temperature.
Signs Your Baby is Too Cold Under Swaddle
Feel your baby’s back, chest, or back of their neck.
If your baby’s skin feels cold to the touch or they are shivering, add an extra layer of clothing or adjust the AC.
Signs Your Baby is Too Hot Under Swaddle
If you feel that your baby’s chest, nape of the neck, or back is hot or they’re sweaty, remove a layer, as they might be feeling too hot.
What Are the Best Swaddle Brands?
Here are the best swaddles that are popular and highly recommended by parents online:
- HALO 100% Cotton Sleepsack Swaddle TOG 1.5
- HALO Sleepsack Swaddle TOG 3.0
- Love To Dream Swaddle
- SwaddleMe Pod
- Ollie World Swaddles
Related Article: How Many Swaddles Do I Need? (Types, Pros, Cons, and More)
Safe Sleep Tips in a Swaddle or Sleep Sack
Dress your little one in clothing suitable for room temperature to ensure they stay comfortable and avoid overheating or getting too cold.
Always place your baby on their back to sleep in a swaddle or sleep sack.
Keep the crib free from any loose bedding, toys, or items that could pose suffocation hazards.
It’s best to avoid sharing your bed with the baby, as it increases the risk of suffocation and SIDS. Opt for a separate crib or bedside bassinet for safe sleep.
Swaddle or Receiving Blanket or Sleep Sack?
A swaddle is often preferred over receiving blankets as it keeps the baby snugly wrapped without coming undone.
Sleep sacks are another safe alternative to keep your baby warm without the risk of loose bedding.
Related Article: What To Do If Newborn Hates Swaddles
FAQ on What Should Baby Wear Under Swaddle or Sleep Sack
Should a baby wear clothes under a swaddle?
Yes, a baby should wear clothes under a swaddle. A light layer of clothing is recommended.
How many layers should a newborn wear under a swaddle?
The layers a newborn should wear under a swaddle would depend on the room temperature and how your baby can easily run cold or hot. Refer to the room temperature guidelines mentioned earlier.
What do babies wear to bed after swaddling?
Babies can wear just regular pajamas to bed after they’ve outgrown swaddles.
Do babies wear anything under sleep sacks?
Yes, a baby should wear something under sleep sacks. A light onesie or pajamas under a sleep sack should do, depending on the temperature.
Will a sleepsuit help keep my baby warm at night?
Yes, a sleepsuit can help keep your baby warm at night as it can add an extra layer of warmth.
Is baby warm enough in just a sleep sack?
Yes, a baby can be warm enough in just a sleep sack, depending on the room temperature.
Can I swaddle my baby with arms down?
Yes, you can swaddle your baby with their arms down. Some swaddles allow for arms-down swaddling, while others have options for arms-up or hands-to-face positioning.
What Should Baby Wear Under Swaddle or Sleep Sack: Final Thoughts
How to dress your baby for a comfortable sleep might be different from one baby to another. So check your little one. Touch them, feel them, see if they look happy and comfortable, and then trust your instinct.
If you feel cold or hot, then most of the time, your baby would probably feel the same.
Feel free to change their clothes or layer them up if needed.
I hope this guide on what should baby wear under a swaddle or sleep sack is helpful for you to plan your baby’s clothes for sleeping.
And if you like this article, then make sure to check out my guide on Best Baby Sleep Products To Help Your Baby Sleep, How To Get Baby To Sleep Longer Stretches At Night, and What To Do If Baby Sleeps Face Down In Mattress.