Merino Wool Buying Guide - The Outdoor Nature Preschool

Merino Wool Buying Guide - The Outdoor Nature Preschool

Merino Wool Buying Guide: 

The Outdoor Nature Preschooler

So..  you've signed up for an outdoor nature preschool and were told to get merino layers for your preschooler. What is all this hype about? What do I really need?

We've got you.

It can be a confusing mess of information. The preschool recommends or even specifies certain merino layers, you need to get something but your preschooler is demanding time. Maybe you'll shop online late at night after they've gone to sleep or try and wake up early and shop (yeah - that one never happens!)

Time is precious, so here we go...


Think of these different season scenarios:

Scenario 1 - Sunny September in the Forest

It's a sunny September, and they are running around the forest path. They are sweaty and dusty. Your kiddo will probably be just wearing the merino base layer set, or just the set with a pair of shorts over top and a hat.

What the merino base layer set is providing here:

  • Long sleeve and long legs help prevent bug bites
  • Naturally protects against the suns harmful rays (30+ UPF)
  • Wicks away sweat when needed
  • Keeps them at a comfortable temperature in sun or shade - it is temperature regulating - even when wet


Scenario 2 - The Brisk Fall Day

It's a brisk fall day outside. The leaves are blowing, the wind has picked up, and your preschooler is going to be spending all day outside. It just rained a bunch last night....Nervous? Don't be - you've got merino on your side. They've got their merino base layer set on underneath the hoodie and pants, they've got a merino hat on, and with boots on, they are good to go!

What the merino base layer set providing here:

  • the insulating layer to help keep them warm
  • Wicks away sweat when needed (Having a Merino hoodie and merino pants at this point continues this wicking process away from the body)
  • Keeps them at a comfortable temperature - even when wet (mud puddles anyone?)
  • Dries super quick - remember that wicking away sweat? It also gets to work drying out quickly -> body heat in action!

Seriously though - when merino is wet, it doesn't have this clammy feeling of wet cotton. You really don't notice it anywhere near as much. So if you squeeze out the water and wear it, you might not realize when it is dry - it feels almost the same. 


Scenario 3 - The Snowy Winter Day

It snowed last night, you are dressing them to get going. You are kinda nervous about spending all day in the snow. Don't be - you have merino on your side. They got their merino base layer set on before all their other layers. You've dug out the felted merino mitts and hat you grabbed in the fall, snow boots are on, and they are off just itching to play in the snow!

What the merino base layer set providing here:

  • the insulating layer to help keep them warm
  • Wicks away sweat when needed (Having more layers of merino just helps this process - hoodie, pants, etc)
  • Keeps them at a comfortable temperature - even when wet (snow melts...and somehow always ends up in various cracks in the layers - I think my kids roll in the snow just to test it)
  • Dries super quick
  • If they have the felted merino mitts  - yes, they get wet in the snow - BUT - when merino gets wet - it still keeps them warm - and doesn't feel clammy like other winter gloves after hours of play - because it works to get moisture away from the skin - not trapped inside.
  • If they have the felted merino hat - they are alot less likely to take it off  and say to you "I'm hot" - why? It helps regulate temperature - less sweaty and more a comfy feeling.


The Super Basic:

What you can get away with to start


As you can see in the above scenarios - these are the super essential base. It is a base layer - but also a starting base for your ventures into merino wool wear and fashion. 


The Basic:

What we recommend as the basic based on experience and our laundry habits...


Why double the sets? In a word - laundry. While merino can be worn all week without needing a wash, and still be fine - I found my kids like things like mud... so one to wear, and one in the wash. Once worn underneath, it is less of a mud problem, but still... yeah it gets in there...


The Mid Range Add On:

(aka - The Grandparent Present List):

You found you like merino, and want to add more to your kiddos wardrobe. You've grabbed the stuff in the basic line up and the optional items. What's next?

  • A Merino Pyjama Set - seriously my kid lives in these if she can
  • 2 Merino Tops - You are going to start finding that these are really handy tops. on their own or as a layer! Mine even sleep in them...
  • Reversible Merino Jacket - it has the grandparent cute factor!
  • and more!  - seriously - you find you just start adding it all on...


Notes & Tips

Having two different kids in merino was an eye opener. My boy loved leggings until about 4 then preferred the looser fit of pants. My girl still lives in leggings, though I'm trying to get her to wear the brother's old pants...

Merino can feel itchy (regardless of the micron count) to some kids. This is why we developed the East Coast Merino Hoodie, and the Merino Pocket Pants - Organic Cotton is used in the places that are tighter to skin like the cuffs. I found this satisfied the itch factor enough for kids, and still got the benefits of merino. You can also get merino tops in a merino blend - it is my favourite to have on me!

If you ever have questions - feel free to ask! I'm a mom too!





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