This Airhead infant girl life jacket is one of the items on Amazon’s Choice, but is it right for your baby? It just might be! The Airhead WICKED Kwik-Dry Neolite Flex Life Vest meets all of our safety and comfort requirements, and it might be just right for you.
The Airhead Infant Girl Life Jacket Features
For a more detailed review of what we look for before we recommend an infant life jacket, check out our safety checklist. This life jacket meets all our requirements for safety, which is always the first consideration. However, because of course it matters to you and your baby, we also reviewed some of its comfort features. In addition, we gathered some tidbits from FAQs and reviews so you can read everything in one place.
Airhead infant girl life jacket safety features
Unless a seller meets this safety checklist, you might want to switch infant life jackets. The Airhead infant girl life jacket ticks all the boxes. Let’s show you what we mean.
The infant life jacket is USCG-approved. Without a USCG approval number on the life vest tag, you shouldn’t even be considering buying it. USCG-approved means it passed USCG’s quality check and is up to national standards on safety. For a Type II jacket in particular, this is crucial.
This is a Type II infant life jacket. In fact, any infant life jacketed marketed any less than Type I or II is not for you. The Type II PFD (personal flotation device) is engineered to lift an unconscious wearer’s head out of the water and point it face-up. That way, even if you lose hold of your baby in a boating incident, you know designers made the jacket to keep their head out of water. If your seller markets the life jacket without a “pillow-head,” it is not Type II and will put your baby in danger.
The infant life jacket is inherently buoyant. If the infant life jacket is hybrid or inflatable, you don’t want it. This is primarily a boating life jacket. When worn, it will save as many lives as possible in a worst-case scenario. Inherently buoyant means the material is foam, with multiple air pockets inside. When you toss the life vest into water, it should have no trouble floating even if you don’t inflate or blow into it. If you don’t have time to reach your infant if anything happens, you need to know they’ll float even without your intervention.
The infant life jacket is bright-colored. Blue may be classic, but bright colors save lives. You want to be able to see your baby the moment you look for them. The extremely bright pink of this life vest will shout your baby’s location no matter what happens. Even when you’re all on a boat, you’ll can pinpoint their position at any given time.
The infant life jacket zips up. While a child or youth life vest can use buckles only to keep their wearer snug, infants are a lot more active and a lot less understanding of straps and buckles. A good infant life jacket is snug against the baby, and only a zip-up guarantees that kind of fit.
The infant life jacket has a torso strap. A torso strap makes the Airhead infant girl life jacket even tighter. You can adjust and cinch it around the waist so the baby has less wriggle room. It buckles in the front, over the zipper.
The infant life jacket has a grab strap. The black strap growing out the top of the life jacket is called a grab strap. In case of emergencies, you can pull your baby out of the water with it, or keep your baby near you while still allowing them to float on their back. An infant life jacket without a grab strap is a safety hazard.
The infant life jacket has a crotch strap. Without a crotch strap, the infant life vest won’t stay on properly. The baby might slip out, or the jacket will ride up uncomfortably over the neck, preventing proper safety. The more your baby can struggle in the jacket, the less safe they will be if they enter the water with it on. An infant life jacket without a crotch strap is incomplete.
This infant life jacket has a pillow collar. We mentioned it a while ago when talking about the Type II rating of this PFD. The pillow collar is typical of Type II life jackets. It holds the infant’s head out of the water, pushing upwards and flat back so the baby lies back on the water. If it doesn’t have a pillow collar, it is a “fake” Type II infant life jacket and should not be used.
For those who live in the State of California, this infant life jacket falls under California Proposition 65.
Safety features (from the FAQs)
Which size should I get? Any infant life jacket is for babies 30 lbs and below. When choosing the Airhead life jacket, make sure you select the one for infants. Airhead recommends its product for babies between 15 to 30 lbs. As long as your baby is within that weight range, the life jacket should adjust to their size. Some have found that if their infant is too light, the infant life jacket will not respond the way it should.
Will it flip the infant onto their back? It should, as a Type II PFD. However, and the suppliers will use the same disclaimer, the life jacket has to be right for the infant so it will work properly. Don’t neglect to try the life jacket before taking it on an actual trip!
Airhead infant girl life jacket comfort features
Apparently, the Airhead is so comfortable that some infants enjoy wearing it even in the house! Let’s break down the elements.
The infant life vest is made of PVC foam. You probably know PVC foam as the ultra-dense, ultra-lightweight board used for displays and signs. Yup! It’s the very same one, adapted for infant life vests. This makes it both light and packed with air.
The infant life vest is hinged at every panel. So that the life vest can wrap close to the baby’s body, the panels are hinged on stitched cloth. This ensures a good fit without compromising the durability and flexibility of the flotation.
The armholes are large and easy to move in. So that your baby can have fun throughout the day, the arm holes are wide and large so they can easily move the way they want to.
Comfort features (from the FAQs)
Does the zipper ride up too high on the chin? Some parents were afraid it would be uncomfortable for the baby, but it turned out to be just right. Adjusting the crotch and torso straps can keep the infant life jacket from riding up too high to the point of discomfort.
Is the pillow-head uncomfortable? If your infant isn’t used to the thickness and feeling, they might object to its presence. However, it might be more a question of getting used to it rather than switching the entire life jacket.
Is the material around the face comfortable? The material around the face is soft and comfy, good for wearing inside and outside the water.
Is the Airhead Infant Girl Life Jacket Right for You?
Only you can answer that question. It meets all our requirements for safety and comfort. Does it meet yours?
Give it a try. We can recommend infant life jackets to the moon and back, but we know it really comes down to you and your infant. Don’t take our word for it! Test it out on your infant. Check the fit and their comfort levels. See how you can manage the straps and zipper. If it’s not the right kind, gift it to a family who might need it.
Dunk it in water. Even when you’re sure the infant life jacket is the right one for you, never take it out on a full trip without a full test run. Under full supervision, watch how it responds to your infant in the water. Make sure that when your baby is tipping forward, the life jacket tips them on their back. If it works in a pool, it should reassure you as to its behavior in the water.
Maintaining your Airhead Infant Girl Life Jacket
Good management makes the right investment go farther. When you have your infant life jacket at home, make sure you will be able to use it to its full extent.
Drip-dry after every use. Waterproof the life vest may be, but it will still retain some dampness in the hinges, strap, and against the material. The best way to make sure it dries properly is through drip-drying. Check the hinges and panels, and under the straps, before storing the life jacket.
Keep it in its own space. If you can’t hang it up like a coat, make sure you create space for the infant life jacket where it won’t have anything on top of it or pressing on its sides. The air pockets in the foam need space, or they might break and make the life vest less buoyant.
Check before and after use. Do a look-over for white mildew spots, ripping or fraying, or general fading. You don’t want to risk using that life jacket longer than it can safely be worn.
The Airhead Infant Girl Life Jacket Might Be Right For Your Baby
You’ve seen our checklist; we hope we’ve considered yours. This life jacket might be just what you were looking for.