Best Life Jacket For Toddler

When it comes to toddler’s safety during swimming, every parent wants to use the best and verified products. It’s a rather difficult decision to choose a life jacket for your little kid, therefore, we have compiled a list of 10 best life jackets for toddlers. Below you can go through their different features and pick one that’s most suitable to your requirements.

10 Best Life Jackets For Toddlers

Right below is a table that compiles 10 best life jackets for toddlers – it offers a concise comparison between the top products acknowledging the most important features your kid need. I recommend you to read our life jacket buying guide for toddlers for further details about any of the following products.

Life JacketUSCG ApprovedMaterial
Stearns Puddle Jumper Basic Life JacketYesNylon and Polyester
Stearns Infant Hydro PFD, GoldYesStearns approved nylon
Full Throttle Child Water Buddies Life Vest.YesNo PVC
Stearns Infant Classic Series VestYesNylon with PE flotation foam
Lady Bug Body Glove Paddle Pals Life JacketYesDurable Polyester and Buoyant Foam
Child Classic Series VestYesNylon Shell with PE Flotation Foam
Full Throttle Infant Baby-Safe VestYes200 denier nylons 150 denier poly-twill
Full Throttle Infant/Child Nylon VestYesNylon
Stohlquist Infant Personal Floatation DeviceYesNylon with 200-denier oxford shell and liner
Floatation Jackets For ToddlersYesNeoprene with Lycra interior

Stearns Puddle Jumper Basic Life Jacket

Affordable and Most Popular With A Variety Of DesignsStearns Puddle Jumper Basic Life Jacket Review
Our first toddler life jacket is a Puddle Jumper by the infamous Stearns flotation outlet. Stearns provides a high-quality range of floatation devices for toddlers, youths, and adults.

This toddler life jacket comes in a variety of bright colors such as blue, green, orange and pink, available in 9 different adorable designs. The bright colors are really helpful for quickly spotting your toddler, while making it a kid-friendly.

One of the best features of this life-jacket is that it is approved by the US Coast-Guard and meets their set standards, which make it very reliable.

It consists of a durable nylon shell and woven polyester providing a softer and comfortable fabric. The nylon shell allows the life jacket to stay afloat.

 This life jacket is designed for toddlers weighing 30 – 50 lbs.  It includes an adjustable buckle snap at the back.

There are 18 more designs with different prices and most of them are approved by the US Coast-Guard.

This can be a long-lasting investment for anyone looking for an affordable, high quality and reliable paddle life jacket. It can effectively be used to train toddlers while providing them a secure outlet to practice properly in the water. It’s reliable and allows toddlers enough control to not topple over, so it doesn’t require constant adult supervision.

Pros
  • Adjustable rear buckles
  • 18 unique designs and colors
  • Durable Nylon Shell
Cons
  • Doesn’t have a grab handle

Stearns Infant Hydro PFD, Gold – Smooth Handling

Stearns Infant Hydro PFD Review
This is yet another high-quality, reliable floatation device from Stearns. The Infant Hydro PFD is made using high quality materials and has been tested to ensure its reliability and durability.

The streamlined, smooth body of the life jacket allows for easy movement through the water, while also providing a strong harness for toddler’s safety. It includes a grab handle at the collar to guide the toddler along while comfortably holding on to the life jacket, without putting the toddler into any discomfort.

The Infant Hydro PFD includes a zipper at the back, which makes it very easy to slide the toddler into the life jacket. It’s made in the USA and has been approved by the US Coast Guard.

This is a great life jacket for both infants and toddlers as it comes with an adjustable strap.  It has a very wide and comfortable head support that’s buoyant and can protect the toddler’s head by keeping it afloat in case of any accidental toppling over.  The body suit of the jacket completely secures the toddler’s body with the rear fabric and leg straps.

Pros
  • Adjustable straps and rear zipper
  • Streamlined body
  • Grab handle
  • Head support
Cons
  • Fabric leg straps are more comfortable than nylon straps.

Full Throttle Child Water Buddies Life Vest – Double Adjustable Front Harnessing and Leg Straps

Full Throttle Child Water Buddies Life Vest Review
Next up is the Child Water Buddies Life Vest for toddlers by Full Throttle. This life jacket comes in bright and colorful kid-friendly designs for easy-spotting. These designs include graphics of an astronaut, dinosaur, lady bug, princess, turtle and so on. It’s designed for toddlers weighing 30-50 lbs.

 It is also USCG verified, but it is important to note that it is a Type 3 life jacket. Those who are not aware, Type 3 life jackets for toddlers are designed to float the baby, unlike Type 1 and Type 2 which allow toddlers to swim holding them on their back or face up. Type 3 jackets require the presence of an adult in case the toddler needs help during use. 

It includes a comfortable uniquely shaped foam at the back to support the child. The flotation foam is light-weight and durable, and it does not contain PVC. It is open-sided with a zippered front including two safety belts that can be securely shut and prevents the life jacket from riding up.

The jacket features a very comfortable and secure design; the fabric is soft to wear yet rigid enough to maintain its purpose. Unfortunately, this life jacket does not include head support, so it’s not the best option for infants but it’s certainly well-suited for toddlers who do not require constant head support. The grab handle at the collar and the double harness buckles make the belt securer and usable, avoiding accidental breaking or losing of a strap. The leg strap ensures the child doesn’t slide down the jacket.

Pros
  • Adjustable double waist straps
  • Adjustable leg strap
  • PVC free flotation foam
Cons
  • No head support
  • Type 3 PFD

Stearns Infant Classic Series Vest – Secure with PE Flotation Foam

Stearns Infant Classic Series Vest Review
Ranked fourth amongst the best sellers, the Stearns Infant Classic Series Vest is a perfect life jacket for infants under 30 lbs.  It’s made of durable nylon shell with polyethylene (PE) flotation foam, which provides buoyancy with low water absorption into the material.  The nylon is a secure one-inch webbing, which is a method of binding nylons used for harnesses and belts. Needless to say, it’s approved by the US Coast Guard.

It comes with a comfortable head support along with a handle. The leg harness allows for securely strapping the toddler into the life jacket. It’s an open-sided vest so you can easily zip it up on the toddler and secure it further with the waist belt provided. It includes a secure 1” webbing, which is a strong and reliable nylon bonding used in belts and harnesses.

This highly recommended life jacket completely covers and secures the toddler’s body with its soft material. The belts are buckled, which are always securer as they cannot be opened by the toddlers and do not break under pressure. Additionally, the nylon belts are strong and do not slip lose, maintaining the adjusted body grip.

Pros
  • Head support
  • Adjustable leg and waist straps
  • Open sided with zipper
  • Includes PE flotation foam
  • One-inch nylon webbing
Cons
  • Single buckles are less secure than multiple ones.

Lady Bug Body Glove Paddle Pals Life Jacket – With A Shoulder Strap Support And It Doesn’t Deflate!

Body Glove Paddle Pals Life Jacket review
These Lady Bug Glove Paddle Pals come in 7 more designs ranging in price from $21 to $29.99. They offer a comfortable fit for toddlers between 30-50 lbs. USCG approved, this toddler life jacket comes with attached arm bands and a safety shoulder harness that is not only more comfortable to wear, but also prevents the toddler from removing the vest in the absence of an adult. It also keeps the vest from sliding off during use.

 The durable polyester material and multi panel design offers comfort and prevents chaffing. Unlike usual life jackets, these do not deflate and are made of buoyant foam constantly inflated and ready to use. 

It includes an adjustable chest strap at the back, with a quick release rear safety buckle. It’s a Type 3 life jacket, but owing to its design, it keeps the toddler’s head above the water while in use.

This is one of our favorites because of the unique shoulder harness incorporated into the design. This toddler life jacket is securer and well-adjusted without any belts, as it will perfectly sit on the toddler’s shoulder just like wearing a vest.

Pros
  • Unique shoulder harness
  • Durable polyester prevents chaffing
  • Doesn’t deflate
Cons
  • Type 3 life jacket

Stearns Child Classic Series Vest – Three Adjustable Secure Straps

Stearns Child Classic Series Vest Review
This is another jacket in Stearns’ Child Class Series with a few distinct features. This best life jacket for toddler is also U.S. Coast Guard approved and is recommended for use during boating, tubing, and swimming.

It is constructed of a durable nylon shell with PE flotation foam, providing more buoyancy. The nylon straps are bonded by one-inch webbing.

It is specially designed for toddlers weighing between 30lbs to 50lbs. It includes a leg strap and is open sided with three adjustable straps across the body offering a more secure fit. The extra straps prevent the life jacket from sliding up during use, due to its smooth material.

 Even though it’s not as creative with its graphics as the other designs, it still serves the purpose. The bright orange color makes it very easy to keep an eye on the toddler. It includes not one, not two but three nylon buckled belts running through the body, making it a very secure-fit for the toddler. The adjustable leg strap adds to its reliability.  
Pros
  • Triple secure body straps
  • Adjustable leg straps
  • Nylon straps with PE foam
  • One-Inch webbing
Cons
  • No head support

Full Throttle Infant Baby-Safe Vest – With A Unique Collar Design

Full Throttle Infant Baby-Safe Vest Review
This brightly colored Full Throttle Infant Life Jacket is designed to safely guard toddlers less than 30lbs. The safe and soft design of the life jacket allows for an amazing swimming experience for toddlers.

 One of the best features of this Full Throttle life jacket is the uniquely designed oversized collar, which provides a complete head support. The leg strap is made of elasticized fabric instead of the usual nylon belts, which makes it more comfortable for the infant to wear.  The collar buckles add further ease in putting on the life jacket.

It is constructed of lightweight, durable flotation foam made of 200 denier nylon and 150 denier poly-twill. This is also a U.S. Coast Guard Approved Type II Life Jacket. The highly recommended toddler life jacket provides a wide, cushion-like head support that will work for both infants and toddlers, alike.

Pros
  • Unique oversized collar
  • Lightweight durable foam
  • Fabric leg strap
Cons
  • Single buckled belt

Full Throttle Infant/Child Nylon Vest – Completely Secures the Toddler With Adjustable Straps

Full Throttle Infant/Child Nylon Vest Review
This Infant/Toddler Nylon Life Jacket by Full Throttle is USCG approved and comes with a grab handle and leg strap for reliably securing the toddler inside.

It’s designed to make it comfortable to wear for the toddler as there is a pop-up pillow providing added head support, while the grab strap offers additional safety for quick recovery if necessary.

 It comes in 3 brightly-colored, kid-friendly designs for toddlers up to 50lbs. The adjustable straps make enough space to form a comfortable fit. 

It is approved by the U.S. Coast Guard so even with a single belt and zippers, it is reliable for long-term use.

Pros
  • Head support
  • Grab handle
  • Adjustable straps and zipper
  • Colorful designs
Cons
  • No buckles on the body suit
  • Zipper could break

Stohlquist Infant Personal Floatation Device –< Double Padded Head Support!

Stohlquist Infant Personal Floatation Device Review
My next recommendation is Stohlquist’s Infant Floatation Device. Stohlquist is well-known for its craftsmanship.  Ranking fourteen amongst the best sellers, this toddler life jacket has a uniquely curved design, and a double padded head support combined with a grab handle. This feature is really useful as the head support won’t be compromised when the grab handle is in use. 

It’s brightly colored design helps in quickly spotting the toddler in the pool. There are three straps – two are used to secure the toddler around the waist; both back and front. The third is the leg strap, which can be used to position the infant securely into the life jacket and prevents the toddler from slipping through it.

The straps are made of nylon with a 200-denier oxford shell and liner. It is a Type 2 PFD with sea level buoyancy of 7 lbs. 6oz and is approved by the U.S. Coast Guard.

It is a very highly recommended toddler life jacket. The double padded head support is a unique design that not only supports infants but also provides them free head movement at the same time. The grab handle is attached to the second head padding, so it doesn’t cause the toddler any sort of discomfort when pulling through it.

Pros
  • Double padded head support
  • Straps for front, back and leg
  • Unique curved design
Cons
  • Only single front belt design

Floatation Jackets For Toddlers – Affordable with EPE Flotation Foam

Floatation Jackets For Toddlers Review
Our final recommendation is this compact and complete life jacket. Designed by Swimfree, it comes in two colors; blue and pink.  Swimfree has included 8 removable floats, which allow parents to adjust the level of buoyancy as the toddler progresses in their swimming experience. It greatly aids the toddler in their swimming experience allowing them to learn faster.  Another factor that adds to comfortable learning experience is that it is constructed of durable wetsuit grade neoprene with a soft lycra interior making the life jacket lightweight and comfortable to wear for longer periods of time. It does not include leg strapping because the unique neoprene construction prevents the jacket from sliding up on the child.

Pros
  • Eight removable floats
  • Buoyancy adjustment
  • Comfortable to wear entire day
  • Neoprene foam prevents sliding
Cons
  • Usually used for training only

Conclusively, these 10 best toddler life jackets are approved by the U.S. Coast Guard for their reliability and long-term use. However, these jackets are not a replacement for any parental support or guidance. Parents are advised not to completely rely on these jackets for their kid’s safety.

The nylon bindings are used in most belts and harnesses for security purposes. Additional features like PE flotation foam, PVC free material and multiple buckled belts should be considered for added safety.  It is suggest to choose your product according to your toddler’s size and weight.