• Top 10 Best Life Jackets for Kids in the UK 2021 1
  • Top 10 Best Life Jackets for Kids in the UK 2021 2
  • Top 10 Best Life Jackets for Kids in the UK 2021 3
  • Top 10 Best Life Jackets for Kids in the UK 2021 4
  • Top 10 Best Life Jackets for Kids in the UK 2021 5

Top 10 Best Life Jackets for Kids in the UK 2021

If your child enjoys being out in the water, or you're trying to encourage them to do so, you want to make sure that their experience is as safe as possible. No matter what their swimming ability, it's advised that your child wears a life jacket when out in open water. Life jackets aren't just limited to use in the sea though - they can also be a useful tool for teaching toddlers how to swim in the pool too!


There are so many water-based activities to get stuck into, from boat-based fun like kayaking and canoeing to something a little different such as paddleboarding, and a comfortable, supportive life jacket doesn't have to get in the way of the fun! So, we've prepared a top 10 list of the best ones to buy from trusted brands including Helly Hanson and Marinepool.

  • Last updated: 30-04-2021
  • 126 views
Table of Contents

How to Choose a Life Jacket for Kids in the UK - Buying Guide

Getting the right life jacket is all about balancing safety requirements with comfort. Some jackets can be considered a bulky inconvenience but with the right fit, your child will forget that they're even wearing one while they splash about.

Finding a Life Jacket That Fits Securely

There are a few things to check in order to judge whether a life jacket will be suitable for your little one. In addition to the level of buoyancy, the main factors are your child's weight, chest size, and age.

Keep Heads Above Water With the Correct Amount of Buoyancy

Keep Heads Above Water With the Correct Amount of Buoyancy

While all life jackets are designed to keep the user afloat, the weight that they can hold above the water will depend on how big the life jacket is and how much buoyancy the foam offers. Most life jackets will clearly state how many kilograms they can support, so you can measure this against your child's weight.


If you want to know more about the buoyancy offered by a life jacket, you can also check the label for a number with the letter N after it. This N refers to Newton, which is the scientific measurement of buoyancy. The basic level of buoyancy is about 40 to 50N, but some jackets will provide more. 

Measure Your Child's Chest to Make Sure Their Life Jacket Sits Right

Measure Your Child's Chest to Make Sure Their Life Jacket Sits Right

Life jackets not only provide buoyancy when your child is in the water, but the shoulder straps will allow you to pull your little one out if they unexpectedly fall in. For this to work without your child slipping out at the bottom, however, the chest part of the jacket needs to be tight enough.


It shouldn't be too tight, though, as this will be uncomfortable and mean that your little one is less willing to put it on. So, in addition to measuring their chest and picking out a jacket that'll fit snugly, check for adjustable straps that'll provide some flexibility as they grow.

Age Is Another Helpful Indicator of Suitability

Age Is Another Helpful Indicator of Suitability

While it's best to use the weight and chest measurements of your child when shopping for a life jacket, some parents find the suggested age provided by the brand useful too when trying to assess which one will fit them properly.


Unfortunately though, not all life jackets will say which ages they are suitable for, and some will suggest a rough range (e.g. 3-6 years) rather than giving a set number.

Additional Fastenings Allow You to Tighten or Loosen the Jacket as Needed

Additional Fastenings Allow You to Tighten or Loosen the Jacket as Needed

A zip at the front comes as standard on most life jackets as the main way of fastening them, but to make sure they are comfortable and stay on securely, additional fastenings are usually required.


The main one you'll come across is a belt (or sometimes two or three) around the waist. These are clipped together to keep them secure and can be adjusted according to your child's size as they grow. 


Other fastenings include string ties or velcro strips, which are normally found on the bottom or the collar of a life jacket. For young kids, a crotch strap is also a good idea as it will prevent them from wiggling out the bottom of the jacket.

Look Out for Extras That'll Give You Even More Peace of Mind

Look Out for Extras That'll Give You Even More Peace of Mind

Most extras that are added to life jackets are designed to enhance their safety. A whistle, for example, can be used by your child to bring attention to their whereabouts if they've fallen into water and can't be seen. The same is true of reflective patches, which make your child more visible in the dark. 


A handle on the back of the neck is something that you might see on jackets for toddlers and younger kids, as it makes them easier to grab and pull out of the water. Lastly, if you're using a life jacket to teach your kid to swim, look for removable floats which allow you to adjust the buoyancy as they improve. 

Top 10 Best Life Jackets for Kids in the UK

When you're buying a life jacket for a child, whether it's for staying safe out at sea or in the swimming pool, we understand how important it is to find one that's comfy as well as secure. To find a life jacket that your youngster will be happy to wear, take a look at our top 10 list.

10
Number of Sizes Available1
Recommended Weight of User30-40 kg
Buoyancy100 N
Chest Measurements65-77 cm
Age Range-
Additional Fastenings2 string ties, belt
ExtrasReflective patches
9

Leader AccessoriesSport I Buoyancy Vest

£29.99

Number of Sizes Available1
Recommended Weight of User30-50 kg
Buoyancy50 N
Chest Measurements66-76 cm
Age Range-
Additional Fastenings2 string ties, belt
ExtrasReflective patches
8

Splash AboutGo Kids Starter Float Jacket

£19.99

Number of Sizes Available2
Recommended Weight of User11-18, 18-30 kg
Buoyancy-
Chest Measurements48-53, 53-58 cm
Age Range1-3, 3-6 years
Additional FasteningsVelcro strap
ExtrasRemovable floats
7
Number of Sizes Available2
Recommended Weight of User10-20, 20-30 kg
Buoyancy100 N
Chest Measurements-
Age Range-
Additional FasteningsBelt, crotch strap
ExtrasReflective patches, whistle
6
Number of Sizes Available3
Recommended Weight of User12-20, 20-25, 25-30 kg
Buoyancy-
Chest MeasurementsUp to 56, 57-61, 62-66 cm
Age Range1.5-3, 3-4, 5-7 years
Additional FasteningsVelcro strap, crotch strap
ExtrasRemovable floats
5

ZeratySwim Vest Float Jacket

£23.90

Number of Sizes Available3
Recommended Weight of User8-18, 18-25, 25-35 kg
Buoyancy50 N
Chest Measurements-
Age Range1-3, 4-6, 7-9 years
Additional Fastenings2 belts, crotch strap
ExtrasHandle on back of neck
4

CasomeChildren's Life Jacket

£19.99

Number of Sizes Available6
Recommended Weight of User0-15, 15-30, 40-60, 60-70, 70-80, 80-100 kg
Buoyancy-
Chest Measurements-
Age RangeToddler - Adult
Additional Fastenings3 belts
ExtrasWhistle, reflective patches
3

GogokidsKids' Float Jacket

£19.99

Number of Sizes Available4
Recommended Weight of User12-15, 16-20, 21-28, 29-35 kg
Buoyancy50 N
Chest Measurements-
Age Range3-4, 5-6, 6-7, 7-8 years
Additional Fastenings2 belts, crotch strap
ExtrasHandle on back of neck
2
Number of Sizes Available3
Recommended Weight of User30-40, 40-70, 70+ kg
Buoyancy50 N
Chest Measurements76-86, 86-106, 106-127 cm
Age Range-
Additional FasteningsBelt
ExtrasAdjustable shoulder straps
1

Helly HansenSport II Buoyancy Aid

£24.99

Number of Sizes Available6
Recommended Weight of User30-40, 40-50, 50-60, 70-90, 90+ kg
Buoyancy35 - 50 N
Chest Measurements65-80, 70-85, 80-95, 85-105, 95-115, 105-130 cm
Age Range-
Additional Fastenings2 string ties, belt
Extras-

Compare the Best Life Jackets for Kids

Image
1
Helly Hansen Sport II Buoyancy Aid 1

Helly Hansen

2
Typhoon Buoyancy Aid 1

Typhoon

3
Gogokids Kids' Float Jacket 1

Gogokids

4
Casome Children's Life Jacket 1

Casome

5
Zeraty Swim Vest Float Jacket 1

Zeraty

6
SwimBest Swim Jacket 1

SwimBest

7
TWF Life Jacket 1

TWF

8
Splash About Go Kids Starter Float Jacket 1

Splash About

9
Leader Accessories Sport I Buoyancy Vest 1

Leader Accessories

10
Marinepool Buoyancy Lifejacket 1

Marinepool

Name

Sport II Buoyancy Aid

Buoyancy Aid

Kids' Float Jacket

Children's Life Jacket

Swim Vest Float Jacket

Swim Jacket

Life Jacket

Go Kids Starter Float Jacket

Sport I Buoyancy Vest

Buoyancy Lifejacket

Features

An All-Rounder That Can Withstand Anything

The Ideal Jacket for Water-Sport Enthusiasts

Perfect for Introducing Young Kids to the Water

Maximum Adjustability and a Wide Range of Sizes

A Lovely Looking Jacket That Keeps Them Warm Too

Several Straps Will Keep Everything in Place

Provides Plenty of Padded Support

Get Your Child Swimming Like a Shark

Simple Yet Stylish Safety Gear

A Comfy Option With a Soft Touch

Price£24.99£44.95£19.99£19.99£23.90£17.99£39.95£19.99£29.99£44.99
Number of Sizes Available6346332211
Recommended Weight of User30-40, 40-50, 50-60, 70-90, 90+ kg30-40, 40-70, 70+ kg12-15, 16-20, 21-28, 29-35 kg0-15, 15-30, 40-60, 60-70, 70-80, 80-100 kg 8-18, 18-25, 25-35 kg12-20, 20-25, 25-30 kg10-20, 20-30 kg11-18, 18-30 kg30-50 kg30-40 kg
Buoyancy35 - 50 N50 N50 N-50 N-100 N-50 N100 N
Chest Measurements65-80, 70-85, 80-95, 85-105, 95-115, 105-130 cm76-86, 86-106, 106-127 cm---Up to 56, 57-61, 62-66 cm-48-53, 53-58 cm66-76 cm65-77 cm
Age Range--3-4, 5-6, 6-7, 7-8 yearsToddler - Adult1-3, 4-6, 7-9 years1.5-3, 3-4, 5-7 years-1-3, 3-6 years--
Additional Fastenings2 string ties, belt Belt2 belts, crotch strap3 belts2 belts, crotch strapVelcro strap, crotch strapBelt, crotch strapVelcro strap2 string ties, belt2 string ties, belt
Extras-Adjustable shoulder strapsHandle on back of neckWhistle, reflective patchesHandle on back of neckRemovable floatsReflective patches, whistleRemovable floatsReflective patchesReflective patches
Link

Continue to Build Your Child's Confidence Around Water

Continue to Build Your Child's Confidence Around Water

A life jacket is a great way to introduce kids to the water, making them feel safe and in control. Once they feel comfortable splashing about and want to progress further, you'll need to invest in more gear - so here are some of our recommendations to get you started!

Summary

Even if kids don't encounter it all that often, it's important for them to feel confident in and around water. You can start to build this feeling of confidence from a young age with a life jacket - it will allow your child to enjoy splashing about in the sea or pool, while you can relax knowing that they'll be supported if anything unexpected happens. 

Author: Emma Cramp

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