The best kids ski gear. We ski multiple times a week with our kids. All of the recommended gear are all tried, tested and loved!
Both of our kids have been hitting the slopes the winter they turned three. We have been through a lot of different kids ski gear.
We ski several times a week with our two kids. The kids have also skied through many different types of weather. As such, the gear and equipment that I recommend below has been truly tried and tested.
There's a lot of behind the scenes planning and preparation that goes into getting a fun day on the ski mountain with kids. Making sure your kids have appropriate ski gear is one of the most important things you can do.
Best Kids Ski Gear
There is so much gear that is needed for skiing. It can seem overwhelming at first. But I'll break it down. If you are looking for a shortcut, I've linked directly to our favorite stuff in this list.
- Jacket - We love the Shred Dog System
- Snow Pants - Same as above, we love the Shred Dog System
- Mittens or Gloves - Our favorite warm, long, waterproof, zipper mittens
- Base and Mid Layer - Our kids like Little Sleepies and Posh Peanuts
- Ski Socks - Light wool socks work best
- Helmet - Here's a cool one with an integrated visor
- Goggles - Both kids use these Bollé goggles
- Ski Boots
Best Kids Ski Jacket and Snow Pants
Ski jackets for kids come in all varieties. Most important is a jacket that fits well, is warm, and is waterproof. Some other features our kids like are armpit vents and easy to access pockets, especially the arm pocket for a ski pass.
Ski Jacket for Older Kids
My favorite ski gear system is from Shred Dog. It's the same system that my son uses for his ski team. We use the Elevated Hardshell, the Elevated Insulator and the Elevated Bibs. You can see it in the photo above.
It's a great system because it's a wardrobe staple.
In the fall, he wears the insulator as a regular jacket. In the dead of winter, he wears the insulator and the hardshell together to ski. By spring, he uses just the shell when he skis.
The Shred Dog system also has a grow with me technology. So, it can be shortened and adjusted to fit the kid well.
Ski Jacket and Snow Pants for Younger Kids
For younger kids, I recommend a ski suit. It's less bulky, which means it's easier for them to move their little legs and arms around. Also, if they fall and slide and roll around (as kids do), snow won't get onto their backs.
We absolutely love our Legowear ski suits. Both kids have used them, and they have lasted for multiple seasons. It's the pink suit my daughter is wearing in the photos. They are a bit tricky to find in the US, but if you look around some smaller sellers carry them.
We also have Legowear Jackets and Snow Pants. It's the green and pink set in the photo below.
Columbia ski suits are also trusty, especially with their outgrown system.
Our Favorite Kids Ski Mittens or Gloves for Skiing
Our kids prefer mittens for skiing, and so do I. Mittens are warmer than gloves. Also, they are easier to put on little kid hands because you don't have to separate out little fingers.
It's absolutely necessary to wear waterproof gear when skiing. Even if the kids are only skiing in sunny weather, the mittens need to be waterproof.
Why? Because kids love picking up and touching snow at any chance they get! Wet and cold hands are also the worst for kids.
See the mittens in the photo below.
Best Base Layer and Mid Layers for Kids Skiing
There are a lot of options for base layers. Most importantly, avoid cotton.
Both our kids love to ski in viscose bamboo for base layers. It's super soft, and keeps them warm enough. The best part? They double as pajamas at home. So this is one way we save some money on gear.
When the weather is warm, a base layer underneath a jacket and snow pants is sufficient for our kids. But we layer when it's cold.
Recommended Ski Socks for Kids
Yes, kids need a lot of gear for skiing. But definitely don't overlook proper ski socks! Warm and toasty toes will keep kids happy on the ski mountain.
Skip the thick ski socks. They often make chubby little kid feet too bulky for ski boots. Also, make sure the ski socks go over the calf, so it doesn't fall down into the ski boot.
We always try to find merino wool ski socks. A thin merino wool sock usually can keep the feet toasty enough.
Find the Right Kids Ski Helmet
This might take some trial and error to find one that fits your kid's head. Smith and Bollé brand helmets have worked well for both our kids. Make sure to look a MIPS helmet.
Some other features that make a helmet comfy and safe:
- A liner system that allows for the helmet to grow with the kid
- Removable ear pads
Kids Ski Goggles We Love
Goggle that fit and work are crucial for a good skiing experience. We don't get super fancy ones for our kids. However, we make sure we get one that has an anti-fog coating.
Kids skis are fairly easy to buy online or buy used. There's lots of charts that advise what length skis to buy kids.
If you want to buy them used, I would recommend checking Facebook Marketplace. We've had lots of success buying used skis. Then we just bring the skis to a shop to get waxed and tuned.
For new skis, you can buy a previous year model to save some money. When kids are just starting out, I don't think the brand of skis matter too much. Just make sure to get the right ski length.
Kids skis usually come with bindings. If you aren't sure how to inspect and adjust bindings, bring it to a shop.
Kid Ski Boots
On the other hand, getting kids fitted for ski boots can be super helpful. That's because little kids have a hard time articulating whether a ski boot fits well.
Especially if a kid is new to skiing, they don't know how a ski boot should fit. Ski boots aren't supposed to feel like regular shoes.
If you take a kid to a ski shop, the shop can help measure the length and width of your chid's foot, as well as look at the arch shape.
From our experience, a ski boot can make or break a ski day. Boots that are too tight are just painful to wear. Boots that are too big don't give the kid enough control of their skis.
Until you have an experienced little skier who knows what it's like to wear a ski boot, the best bet is to take the kid to a ski shop to get them properly fitted.
Our Favorite Kids Ski Gear
I hope this post helps you find ski gear that your kids will love. Do you have other recommendations? Let us know in the comments below.