Are you thinking about how to keep your kids busy, where to take them to? There’s a long list of places that the whole family can go to. Have you considered taking your kids for a swim? Then you should be thinking about how to buy baby bathing suits.
So, let’s say you listen to our expert advice (tongue-in-cheek) and decide to take the kids to the pool, the first thing that comes to mind is the appropriate pool or water outfit.
You may be thinking of a family swimming outfit with a pink panther theme. Cute!
But what you have not realized is that shopping for a baby swimwear involves considering other factors that do not come up when you are shopping for an adult swimwear.
Factors to Consider When Buying Baby Bathing Suits
What Factors Do You Consider When Buying Baby Bathing Suits?
Consider the following when buying baby bathing suits:
3. Ease of washing
5. UPF rating
7. Ease of removal
9. The type of fabric
This is the first factor you need to consider. You do not need bathing suits that will restrict your baby’s movements or suits with straps that will dig into their skin and make them uncomfortable. Straps can be very pretty, but comfort trumps when shopping for the little ones.
It is important to choose bathing suits that will not lose their sheen for at least a year. Frills, shiny beads, nets, and ruffles on baby outfits are beautiful, but how long will they stay on?
How long before the seams start to fray and the swimwear starts to look like they were sand-papered? So yes, you can go for lovely baby bathing suits, but ensure that they are durable.
Ease of Washing
At the beach, children are not expected to sit down quietly. They are expected to move around, play, and get dirty. Therefore, washing their outfits is usually stressful. So, it is best to buy bathing suits that are easy to wash.
Your baby bathing suit needs to offer some level of protection from the sun. We know that sunscreen can be used by babies that are older than 6 months. However, instead of exposing your baby to potentially harmful chemicals, you can select bathing suits that offer UV protection.
What Is UPF Rating?
UPF (ultraviolet protection factor) rating is an indicator of how much of the sun’s radiation is absorbed by a fabric. It can be seen on the outfit’s label. A UPF rating of 40 – 50+ indicates excellent UV protection.
Additionally, the 50+ rating means that the fabric will only allow 1/50 (two percent) of the sun’s radiation to pass through it. This protection is only conferred to the areas covered by the fabric.
Children are attracted to colors. So, you need to get swimsuits that have warm and vibrant colors with stylish prints.
Ease of Removal
Sometimes, in the middle of the fun, your child may need diaper change. This is where clip-on buttons, zippers, and adjustable straps come in.
Bathing suits for kids come with front zippers which make them easy to pull off. Some of them have zippers running through the entire length of the suit, from top to bottom. This means you can take out the diaper without pulling off the whole outfit.
Try buying suits with zippers rather than those with plastic clip-on. This is because, during active play, the plastic snaps may open, exposing your baby to the harsh sun. Sometimes kids play with the clip-on, snapping them open. Also, suits with zippers are easy to take off and your child’s skin will be protected at all times.
Buying a swimsuit that is a size bigger, with the hopes that your child will grow into it, is a big no-no. In fact, through the seasons, swimsuit fabrics can stretch and expand. While we do not advice tight swimsuits or loose ones, it is usually better to go with fitted ones.
Ensure that the straps are not too loose that the suit slides down the shoulder of the child. Also, they do not have to be so tight that they dig into the skin.
The Type of Fabric
There are a lot of options for fabrics and this is dependent on what your priorities are. Different fabrics have their pros and cons. However, most of the best and durable bathing suits are made from polyester, sometimes combined with Lycra. This is because the fabric retains its color and is resistant to chlorine.
How Do You Choose A Suitable Bathing Suit Fabric?
The following will guide you in choosing a suitable bathing suit fabric:
1. Resistance to chlorine (chlorine tends to fade out colors)
2. Comfortable and stretchy
3. Long lasting
4. Retains shape and fitting after a long time of use and several washes
5. Quick-drying and light
Types of Swimwear Fabric
What Types of Fabric Are Good for Kids Swimwear?
The types of fabric that are good for kids swimwear are:
It is important to have a blend of any two of these fabrics. Nylon and Lycra makes a great blend but you can also buy a blend of Lycra and Polyester.
Lycra material is used as a fabric for bathing suits because it is quick drying. So, you don’t have to worry about the beach sand clinging relentlessly to the material. This can be a nuisance during washing.
Lycra also moves well with the body and it is soft and comfy. However, it does not withstand wear as well as either nylon or polyester. Over time, it loses its form and becomes baggy.
Polyester is another good material to look out for because it is chlorine resistant and does not wash out as quickly as other materials. However, it is thicker and less breathable.
It is inexpensive, light, and strong. However, it fades when exposed to UV rays and chlorine. Over time, the elasticity tends to wear thin.
There is, therefore, no “best” fabric but combinations of the above will give you the best swimwear. And you can pick fabric based on what is most important to you. When in doubt, a polyester/spandex blend is a good choice because it is great for holding shape and is most durable. Lycra is a trademark for a type of spandex.
Types of Kids Swimwear
What Are the Types of Kids Swimwear?
The types of kids swimwear are:
1. One-piece swimwear
2. Baby bikini
4. Rash guard
5. Wet suit
6. Swim shorts
As the name implies, this swimwear covers both the trunk and the genitalia in one continuous piece, from neck to hem. It is mostly worn by female kids.
This is actually a two-piece swimwear. Hence the prefix “bi.” It has a top section separated from the bottom.
This offers the same coverage that comes with wearing a one-piece suit. However, it removes the inconvenience of pulling off the whole outfit when your child needs to pee. The tankini swimwear is a combination of a tank-top and a bikini bottom.
This swimwear is usually made of spandex, nylon, and polyester. Both the material and surface area of coverage are specifically to protect the skin from rashes caused by sunburn.
The material is designed to absorb only a specific amount of UV light and you can tell the extent of absorption from the UPF rating.
This is a close fitted garment usually made of rubber. It typically covers the entire body.
These are simple briefs or swim trunks for boys.
Check out these other detailed articles:
- Newborn Baby Clothes: What You Really Need
- Baby Bracelets: What To Look Out For When Choosing One
- Designer Baby Clothes: How To Buy At Affordable Price
- Convertible Baby Cribs – How Important Are They?
- Baby Nursery Furniture: What You Need
- Extra Wide Baby Gates Buyer’s Guide
How to Care for Your Baby Bathing Suit
How Do You Maintain Your Baby Swimwear?
To maintain your baby swimwear, do the following:
1. Wash according to the manufacturer’s instruction.
2. Rinse in clean water as soon as your baby is out of the pool. This will wash off the chlorine from the pool water.
3. Do not wring out the swimwear. When it is stretched, it can lose form and elasticity.
4. Allow the bathing suit to dry naturally. Do not use the machine dryer.
5. Never wash your baby bathing suit in hot water. This can damage the fabric.
6. Do not use detergent on your baby’s swimsuit as most of them are harsh. A mild soap, under running tap water, will do.
Baby Bathing Suits — Related FAQs
Which Baby Swimsuits Have Sun Protection?
The following baby swimsuits have sun protection:
- RuffleButts baby/toddler girls UPF 50+ sun protection long sleeve one piece swimsuit with zipper
- Kanu surf boys’ platinum rashguard
- Nautica girls tankini swimsuit with 50+ sun protection
- SwimZip UPF 50+ girls long sleeve sunsuit
- Calvin Klein girls two-piece swimsuit with UPF 50+ sun protection
- UV SKINZ UPF 50+ baby boys’ sun & swimsuit
- TAIYCYXGAN baby boys kids long sleeve UV sun protection rash guard swimsuit with hat
- ESTAMICO boys’ UPF 50+ long sleeve rash guard athletic swim shirt
- Simple Joys by Carter’s boys’ two piece swimsuit trunk and rash guard
- Karrack girls and boys one piece rash guard swimsuit with UPF 50+ sun protection
Can You Wash a Bathing Suit In the Washing Machine?
You can wash a bathing suit in the washing machine but this can damage it. Over time, the bathing suit will stretch and become saggy. Therefore, it is important to hand wash in order to maintain the elasticity and color of the fabric.
Furthermore, the detergent used in a washing machine can be very harsh for your bathing suit. Also, washing it alongside other fabrics can discolor it as a result of dye bleeding. However, if you have to wash your bathing suit in a washing machine, use a very mild detergent with a delicate setting.
Do You Size Up or Down for Swimsuits?
Swimsuits stretch when they are wet. So, if your baby will be spending much time in water, it is better to size down or stick to true size. Otherwise, size up as the swimsuits will not stretch when they are dry.
Additionally, when ordering baby bathing suits online, it is usually better to order a size higher because most of the suits for kids are a size smaller than advertised. They usually come in ranges. So, if your child is 3 months old, order the 4 – 6 months set.
These ranges are based on average baby sizes. So if your little one is a bit above the average size, do not risk it; go a size higher.
What Do Babies Need for the Beach?
When taking your baby to the beach, you will need the following items:
- A sunscreen that is suitable for babies and toddlers
- UV umbrella or sun tent
- A windbreak to provide privacy for your family and protection from wind
- A picnic blanket to sit on and to protect your baby from the beach sand
- A lot of snacks, drinks, and food
- First aid box
- Float suit, armbands, or rubber ring
- Beach ball, bucket, and spade
- A camera to keep fun memories
What Can a Baby Wear after Swimming?
You can wrap your newborn in a big towel after swimming. Do not forget to cover the baby’s head with a newborn baby cap. However, it is usually best to buy a baby hooded bath towel. Furthermore, if your baby wriggles excessively, covering with a towel will not be effective. In that case, you need to wear your baby a poncho towel or a dressing gown. This will keep your baby warm as soon as they are out of the pool. So, you need to have the poncho handy.
Can You Wash Your Swimsuit after Every Use?
You need to wash your swimsuit after every use. This is irrespective of whether it was used in swimming or just worn to spend some time at the beach. Your swimsuit comes in contact with various chemicals and harmful substances when it is being worn.
For example, applying suntan lotion or sunscreen on your body will protect you from harmful UV rays. However, the chemicals in the sunscreen can damage your swimsuit. Other substances like body oils, tanning oil, and deodorants can discolor or damage your swimsuit. Additionally, the chlorine present in pool water is very harsh on swimsuits. Hence, washing your swimsuit after every use will remove the chemicals and harmful substances before they can damage it.