What should your baby wear to sleep to be both safe and comfortable? This was a little bit of mystery to me as a first time mom!

You have your baby’s onesies, sleepers, and pajamas and then you are potentially either swaddling or putting your little one into a baby sleeping bag. You need to consider these baby sleeping devices and how much warmth they provide when deciding what pajamas your baby should be wearing too.

In this baby sleeping clothes guide article I am detailing what my babies wore to sleep at various ages throughout the first year. After going through this multiple times as a mom of 3, I learned what worked best to help my babies sleep well and I am going to share my tips with you.

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What Should a Baby Wear For Safe Sleep at 68 Degrees F?

68-72 degrees Fahrenheit is the recommended room temperature for baby sleep. It is also a typical room temperature in people’s homes.

Your baby should wear pajamas or onesies that will allow him or her to be comfortable. You don’t want your baby to be too hot or too cold.

Additionally, you will likely be swaddling or using some type of baby sleeping bag in place of blankets. Remember, blankets are not safe for a baby’s crib. All you need is a fitted sheet in the crib and that’s it.

Depending on the season I would typically put my kids in either a short-sleeve onesie, a long sleeve onesie, or a zip-up sleeper. Then I would either swaddle them or put them in a baby sleeping bag.

Below, I will review which baby sleep device I recommend using at different ages. Each varies a bit in how heavy or thick it is. Basically, the more heavyweight the baby sleeping aid you use, the more lightweight you will want to dress your baby for sleep.

Baby Sleeping Clothes Guide For a Newborn to 3 Months Old (How To Dress With a Swaddle)

From the age or newborn to approximately 3 months old, I recommend swaddling your baby. Even if your little one tends to break out of it, it helps your newborn to fall asleep and prevents your baby from waking up due to the Moro reflex. There are a large variety of items available for swaddling your baby. I recommend the following:

Dressing your newborn in either a onesie or sleeper is appropriate to go along with a swaddle. Just keep in mind you do NOT want your baby to overheat. There is no need to dress a baby in super heavyweight swaddles or clothes – especially if the room temperature is typical (68-72 F).

If you notice your baby sweaty or too warm, try dressing her in lighter weight clothing or using a lightweight swaddle blanket. On the flip side, if your baby seems cold, dress her in warmer or heavier-weight pajamas.

Baby Sleeping Clothes Guide For Swaddle Transition (3-6 Months)

After the newborn stage, as early as 3 months of age, you will start finding that your baby is breaking out of her swaddle. This is your first cue that it is time to transition your baby away from the swaddle.

My absolute favorite baby sleep aid at 3 months is the Baby Merlin Sleepsuit. This device is marketed for swaddle transitioning. The Baby Merlin helps prevent your baby from waking up due to Moro reflexes, just like swaddling. All three of my kids slept really well in the Merlin sleepsuit!

Another reason I love the Baby Merlin is it’s perfect for transitioning from a bassinet to a crib. Since a crib is so much bigger, the Baby Merlin Sleepsuit can still provide a cozy, enclosed feeling for your little one.

I do want to point out that it could take a couple days for your baby to adjust to the sleepsuit. Don’t give up on it, if it’s not the best from day one.

Don’t forget, your baby is going through a big transition! No more swaddling and potentially moving to a crib at the same time as well. Be sure to have your baby both nap and sleep in the suit at night for at least 2-3 days, so she can adjust to this new sleeping arrangement.

As has been the theme throughout this article, you should dress your baby so she is comfortable with the Merlin sleepsuit on. You will notice that the sleepsuit is very heavyweight. For this reason I always put a short-sleeve onesie on my kids with this suit. You also might want to consider adjusting the room temperature a little cooler than normal if needed.

If you think the Baby Merlin Sleepsuit is not for you, then I suggest switching from a swaddle to a baby sleep sack (without the swaddle wings attached) around 3 months old. This is also what I recommend once you are done with the Baby Merlin sleepsuit, which will happen around 6 months old.

Baby Sleeping Bag Clothes Guide (6+ Months)

Once your baby is strong enough to roll with the Baby Merlin suit on, it is time to stop using it. For my kids, I don’t know that they ever rolled over with the suit on, but around 6-7 months old they were starting to get too big for the suit anyway.

Instead of purchasing the 6-9 month Baby Merlin sleepsuit, we decided to start using baby sleeping bags (aka baby sleep sacks). We made this decision because the Baby Merlin suits are expensive and I was worried my babies would start rolling over with it on and it would be a waste of money to get the next size up.

My personal favorite baby sleeping bag is the HALO 100% cotton SleepSack. If you make the switch when we did, you will likely want to get size medium. HALO SleepSacks are a great product that last a long time, and they are a very good value. I also like the cotton sleeping bags because they are warm, but not too heavyweight.

One thing that’s different with the sleeping bags is that they do not cover your baby’s arms. Once we made this switch, I often dressed my kids in long-sleeve onesies or sleepers.

Baby sleep clothes guide Pinterest pin.

How To Select The Correct TOG for a Baby Sleeping Bag

As has been the theme of this article, you will want to select a baby sleeping bag TOG that allows your baby to be comfortable (not too hot and not too cold). TOG stands for Thermal Overall Grade. The lower the TOG the lighter weight the sleep sack is, and the higher the TOG rating the heavier and more insulated a baby sleeping bag is.

This TOG rating guide is perfect for determining what will work best in your home. Personally, I opted for sleeping bags with TOG ratings on the lower end of the spectrum. That way I could just dress my baby in warmer pajamas if needed.

I hope this baby sleeping clothes guide has helped you figure out how to dress your little one for sleep.

To summarize my recommendations for your baby’s sleep outfits and sleeping gear, I recommend the following sleep gear based on your baby’s age:

To go along with these baby sleeping devices, I recommend clothing that is not overly heavy. A onesie or a lightweight sleeper is perfect for your baby’s naps and sleeping at night. Good luck and if you need more baby sleep help, check out the articles below.

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