There are so many forms of infant sleep sacks around that it may be challenging to find the correct one (or ones) for your requirements. Here I’ll talk about examples of the functions you might want to keep in mind when making your purchase:
- Fabric—when your tiny bundle of joy will be wrapped up inside a sleep sack for as many as 15 hours per day, you would like to be sure that the material is not going to upset his or her skin. Natural fibers such as merino wool and cotton make good selections. They ventilate much better than most synthetic fabric and are naturally fire resistant.
- Weight—it is recommended to use an appropriate bag for the season. For example, should you use one that is excessively thick in summer, your child may get too hot. You may notice a number of sacks advertise their tog score, which is a unit of thermal resistance. The larger the number, the more heat the bag will retain. Usually a tog in the 1.5–2 range will work for the majority of months. But if your home is particularly hot in summer time you might like to think about one that has a lower rating. Alternatively, choose a tog score of up to 3 or 4 if your baby's room can be cold (or you’re camping).
- Sizes—one common brand is Grobag (previously called Bump to 3) and I can’t imagine a better name. I was continuously surprised by how fast our son grew in the months after he was born and we rapidly shifted up the sizing chart. In the beginning though, you’ll want to make sure there isn’t an excessive amount of material. This is to prevent bunching around the infant's face. As soon as you’re through that period (after 3–6 months) you can either continue to buying sizes specific for age and weight or look for one that adjusts to cover a variety of sizes, such as the Merino Kids 0–2 years.
- Style—although the overall shape of toddler sleeping bags is similar, there are a few functions that might help make your life easier. Newborn sleep bags often feature the capability to swaddle the infant and provide a reassuringly tight fit. They usually have large wings that you draw around the chest and fasten with velcro. An additional helpful idea is to buy a sleep bag with a pair of zippers. This makes it easier to open the sack just enough to change diapers without having to remove the whole thing.
- Use beyond the crib—depending on the climate where you live, you might like to make use of the sleep bag as a baby quilt when you’re out and about. Fortunately, some kinds of sacks have special openings that enable you to fit them into baby car seats or strollers. You can buckle your loved one as usual and then zip them up so they’re nice and cozy. We found it helpful to have a separate sleep bag exclusively for the car seat on those chilly winter days when the car takes longer to heat up.
- Brands—there are many different brands to select from when buying a sleep bag. Some of the more common companies include HALO SleepSack, Grobag, SwaddleDesigns, Merino Kids, Sleep Huggers, and aden + anais. Most of these producers make a variety of styles, weights and sizes so you’ll make sure to select one that suits your needs.