Ensuring you have the correct ski gear for all conditions is a challenge in itself but when you have to think about your Little Skiers as well, it's enough to make the calmest of parents start to stress.
So we have pulled together a simple checklist at the bottom of this article which can be downloaded and printed and more details at the top in case you are a first - time skier - these are our most common questions we get phone calls on!Thermal or Base Layer:
Never use cotton thermals for skiing, you must have performance thermals or base layers. This is the most important first layer to wick away any moisture and prevent chilling when on chair lifts. Our blog Base Layers vs Thermals gives more details.Fleece and/or Skiing Micro-Fleece:
An important second layer and provides the warmth that you need under a ski jacket. Microfleeces are thinner fleeces, ideally suited to skiing as they are really warm yet not bulky or restrictive when skiing. They usually have a half zip neck that helps keep all the stored heat inside the fleece as well as acting as a handy way of allowing in fresh air when needed.Ski Socks:
The key to warm ski socks is the merino wool content which will provide the extra warmth needed under boots. The ski socks should also have natural anti-bacterial properties and be breathable. Barts and Smartwool do a fantastic range of kids ski socks that are completely child friendly in terms of their designs and most importantly they are warm and comfortable.Neck Warmers or Balaclavas:
These provide extra protection around the neck area against bitter winds at the top of mountains and on chairlifts. A microfibre tube can fit under a helmet for extra warmth and to cover more of the back of the neck without adding bulk under a ski jacket. Neck warmers are easy to pull up over the nose and chin for extra protection when on ski lifts or protection against the sun on high UV days. A skiing balaclava is ideal for higher altitude ski resorts or early skiing trips when temperatures can be consistently below zero.Thermal Glove Liners and/or Hand Warmers:
Ideal for high altitude skiing or early season skiing holidays - get a ski school set of 6 hand warmers to save money and keep all of the family warm on the slopes. Glove liners are also really useful worn on their own when back at home, on the football pitch or playground.Winter Hats
For colder resorts look for earflap designs, ideally fleece linings for extra warmth. Designs with a fleece lining prevent itching.Outerwear:
The most important features to look for when buying Kids Ski Jackets or Snowsuits are that they are breathable (to allow moisture to escape that has built up during skiing), critically taped seams (stops water getting in the sewing holes), ski pass pockets, snow skirts (stops snow going up your back if you fall over) and a feature like OUTGROWN is really worth paying a small bit extra for as you can let out the sleeves and legs to gain an extra size ready to use again next year.Ski Mittens or Ski Gloves:
These must be waterproof - the best skiing gloves have a waterproof insert in as well as a DWR coating on the glove. Longer cuffs are great for preventing snow entering the ski jacket sleeves and mittens are generally considered warmer than ski gloves. Barts Tec Ski Gloves and Hestra are two popular skiing gloves brand with good solid reviews for all styles.Skiing Goggles:
It is essential that you protect your children’s eyes from the glare off the snow - even if they are not skiing we would recommend you protect your child and ski goggles must offer 100% UV protection. UVEX is a German brand and Bolle is French, the two most popular ski helmet and goggles brands on the market and the quality and fit is second to none.Sun Cream Protection & Lip Salve:
Look for mountain formulas designed for freezing temperatures otherwise normal sun cream can freeze on children's faces and cause irritation.Small Childs Rucksack:
Ideal for a favourite toy, snacks and water or juice cartons when off to ski school. It is worth checking though as some ski resorts no longer allow rucksacks for ski school children so consider taking small drinks bottles or pouches that fit into pockets.Waterproof Snow Boots:
These must be thermal lined, waterproof and have sufficient grip on the sole for walking in icy areas around the resort. And most ski boots can be used for winter wear in the UK so its important to buy boots that are lightweight and easy to get on and off without parental assistance!Après-ski clothing:
The key here is not to pack too much – the children are likely to spend most of their non skiing time playing in the snow in their ski gear or relaxing in the chalet in their base layers and fleeces. So just a few extra items are all that’s required to bridge the gap when you head out for a meal in the evening.
A few other "Come In Handy" ideas:
- Slippers, Chalet shoes and/or crocs
- Toddler Plastic Skis - good for younger children not attending ski school or for apres ski fun in the snow
- HobbleDeHoo Skiing Harness - perfect for younger children learning to ski
- Ski Helmet Covers – these jazz up hired helmets and are perfect for identifying your child on crowded pistes
- Travel Toys – essential for passing the time on the plane and transfers!
Download our handy packing checklist :
Please add in the comments below if I have forgotten anything :)
Don't forget, we are a small independent ski shop and happy to help with any questions - just call!