If you’ve got a summer baby, you might also need summer nursing cover. We’ve rounded up the best nursing covers for summer and done the research for you!
Hello, Summer Baby
I get it, okay? Being pregnant in those hot days of summer is tough. And then, you have the baby! Great news! But now you’ve got a newborn to take care of in those hot, hot days of summer.
Taking care of a baby is hard. You need to learn to comfortably breastfeed (sometimes on the go!), pump, and safely store breastmilk, ensure your baby is eating enough, and recover from birth. That’s a tough job in the best of times, but you’ll also do it while wearing the same pajamas or postpartum leggings for days on end, while forgetting to shower, while adjusting to life as a new mom.
And it’s all made slightly more challenging in the sweltering heat of summer (although TBH, getting your baby into a footmuff can be a challenge in winter, too).
If you’ve got a summer baby, you might also need some hot weather accessories like a summer nursing cover, sunshade for your stroller, and a stroller fan. I’m talking something that gives you the privacy you need as you figure this whole mom thing out. And it also keeps you and your baby cool and shaded from the sun.
My daughter was born mid-July. At the time, we lived in Central Europe, where daytime temperatures were in the mid 90s F on the regular. At first, I stayed home in front of the fan a lot (and also pumped the AC a lot). But as our baby got a bit older, I got a bit bolder. I wanted to get out, hit up the family-friendly beer gardens for a nice glass of homemade lemonade. I wanted to enjoy the city, sweltering as it was.
And so I had to get used to breastfeeding in public. Because I was still figuring things out, I wanted something to cover up a bit beyond what my nursing bra and nursing tank offered, protect my wee one from the sun beating down, and also provide a bit of privacy for her when she was in the car seat, stroller, shopping buggy, etc.
Enter: a good nursing cover.
My Picks for the Best Breastfeeding Cover for Summer
Just here for the most important parts? If you’re looking for a good nursing cover for summer and don’t have a lot of time to spare, here are my picks for the 4 best:
Types of Nursing Covers Good for Summer
Nursing covers come in a range of styles, fabrics, and prints, but the key to finding the best cover for hot weather is to consider the fabric and design.
You want something that’s lightweight, but not see through. You want something that provides 360 degree coverage, but lets you see your baby – and doesn’t cause either of you to overheat. And if you’re anything like me, you want a nursing cover that fits your style, so you actually want to use it, instead of just keeping it hidden in your baby bag.
A nursing apron is the most traditional style of breastfeeding cover. Basically it’s a big, long rectangle of fabric, with a way to attach it around your neck like an apron. Often, there is wire sewn into the top part, creating a rigid bit so you can easily see your baby, without the fabric collapsing down. And there’s no waist tie, like in a kitchen apron, making it roomy and easy to adjust as needed.
Apron style covers are big and comfy, and many of them offer good coverage when pumping too. If you’re out in the sun, the apron style will give your baby some comfortable protection from the sun and onlookers. And because the sides are open, it doesn’t get super hot underneath, either.
As a con, because the sides are open you may find nursing aprons don’t offer you enough coverage, depending on your personal modesty levels. Yes, I’m talking sideboob.
Loop Style / MultiUse
The loop style breastfeeding cover does quadruple duty, providing coverage for your car seat, buggy, and a shopping buggy. Why buy 4 things when you can buy 1 thing that does quadruple duty, right?
These covers are basically super stretchy wide loops of fabric, and typically made of a lightweight syntehtic fabric. They’re also super popular, and come in plenty of different fabric prints and colors, making them a nice accessory.
Beyond serving as a breastfeeding cover, you can use it on buggies, car seats, shopping carts, and high chairs, and can also just throw it on the grass as a make shift blanket or place to change a diaper.
That makes these wrap style covers one of the best nursing covers for parents who want something multifunctional that will last a few years.
I will caution you, a lot of these covers are made of synthetic fabrics which may or may not breathe well in the heat (depending on the particular fabric blend used). I’ve chosen covers for this list that get great reviews for being a good solution in the heat, but if you choose a different one, I recommend you search the reviews for words like “heat, hot” etc.
Infinity Scarf Breastfeeding Covers
I love scarfs, and wear them a lot. But whether the loop scarf style will work for you in the heat really depends on how hot it gets where you live.
When our daughter was born, we were regularly dealing with daytime temperatures of 95 F. There was no way I was going to put a scarf around my neck for a walk on days like that. But, it cooled off fairly well in the evenings, and I was happy to use my breastfeeding scarf then, to hit up a patio or a restaurant terrace.
To me, the beauty of the scarf style nursing cover is that it doubles as an accessory you can wear. When you have a hangry, screaming baby, there’s no digging through the baby bag or under the stroller in search of a nursing cover, because it’s already around your neck. If it’s too hot to wear the scarf and you have it stashed in your diaper bag, then it’s really not that much more convenient than the wrap around style or apron type of cover.
Worth noting, this style could also work really well if you have to go back to work in an air-conditioned space or office, and need a pumping cover.
Downside: can’t see your baby as well, and it’s not going to provide enough coverage for a double pump.
Poncho Nursing Cover
Personally, I’m a big fan of the poncho style. You wear it like a shirt over your nursing clothes to give you an added layer of protection and privacy. The key for this style is looking for something that’s super lightweight and also not see through!
Probably the best coverage of the bunch, and there’s no chance your baby is going to pull it down. As they get older, however, they might flip it up.
Muslin Receiving Blanket
For minimalist mamas who don’t want to start out with a dedicated nursing cover, throwing a muslin blanket over your shoulder is not a terrible solution. I’ve done this many a times in a pinch, and it works okay. However, I usually had to have my husband or a friend seated next to me, being constantly vigilant about ensuring it didn’t fall off my shoulder! If possible, the more dedicated types of nursing covers are much easier to manage, but this will do if it’s all you have.
Best Nursing Covers for Summer Reviews
This is a great example of a multi-use / wrap style coverage. It’s got soft fabric (it’s a rayon-spandex blend), which won’t irritate your skin or your baby’s, and is breathable and stretchy, without being see through.
Mamas confirm in the reviews it doesn’t get too hot for baby or mom when using this on steamy days.
Made out of naturally hypoallergenic bamboo fabric, this top is loose enough to slip your little one underneath to discretely breastfeed. And it features convenient arm holes so that your hands can be free while your baby is still feeding underneath.
As a bonus, it fits perfectly over car seats, strollers and shopping buggy seats as a light and airy shield from wind, sunlight and germs.
It is one-size-fits-all and comes in five different colors: black, black and white striped, grey, grey and white striped and pink. Also, because it is made with the high-quality bamboo fabric, it does have to be hand-washed and line-dried.
Measuring 70 inches by 26 inches when unfolded, it is more than enough to provide extra privacy while nursing in public, but is best suited for moms that aren’t worried about complete coverage since it takes some maneuvering to position.
Despite its size, it can easily be worn as a regular scarf when wrapped up and comes in four different stylish patterns like the colorful indigo design or whimsical white birds on a grey background.
This scarf is machine-washable and comes in one-size-fits-all.
At 35 inches in length, you won’t have to worry about any embarrassing peek-a-boo moments while feeding in public, and the rigid neck line will stay propped open so that you can maintain a clear view of your little one while they’re feeding.
As a bonus feature, it has a built-in burp cloth. That makes it easy to throw something over your shoulder to burp your little one after feeding.
It is machine washable and dryer-safe and comes in a cute navy blue and floral design. It also comes with a pouch for easy transportation. You can easily fit it into a diaper bag or even a purse with little effort.
A Few More Things To Consider When Choosing a Nursing Cover for Summer
- Fabric: Look for something that’s lightweight, but not see through. Muslin should work well in a lot of situations, a light jersey knit, or even a linen style. Many nursing covers are a bit stretchy, which means there’s some sort of synthetic fabric blended in. Before hitting the buy button, check reviews to see how it breathes in the heat.
- Privacy: This one’s up to you. In my experience, the poncho and the wrap style covers give the most coverage. I love that both are multifunctional (the poncho doubling as a wardrobe item long after your breastfeeding days are over).
- Your Baby: You can do a ton of research and choose the best option for you, and your baby may hate it. Some babies are just not down with having their faces covered while feeding. In this case, the apron type of nursing cover will probably work best. As your baby gets older and has better motor skills control, they may let you know what they don’t like. Expect fabric to pulled down or flipped up! Fun for your baby, who’s learning about cause and effect, but a shock for mom. Be prepared to experiment!
- Pumping Considerations: For a double pump, a poncho is the only thing that will provide full coverage.
Final Thoughts on Finding the Best Nursing Covers for Summer
Each of the 4 types of nursing covers offers a solution for hot days. The key is considering your own climate, and how much coverage you personally want from a modesty perspective.
I hope this article helps you in your search for the perfect nursing cover. If you know a new mama and found this article helpful, please share this article with her!