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10 of the best buggy sunshades, covers and parasols for babies

These buggy covers, canopies and parasols provide shade and could help your baby to sleep better while out and about, while avoiding the safety risks of covering your pushchair with a regular blanket

10 of the best buggy covers

Many babies love having a snooze while being pushed along in the buggy. The movement can help them to settle and keep them asleep for longer, but they can sometimes get distracted by the sights and light around them.

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A buggy cover could be the answer, as it provides darkness and shade from the sunlight, using materials that are breathable and thin enough to allow air into the pram. Designed to fit most pushchairs, these covers are usually made from light mesh and come with zip pockets or panels so you can take a peek at your sleeping baby without disturbing them.

If you prefer not to cover your baby completely, parasols and sun canopies also offer protection from the sun and provide some extra shade – perfect if your pushchair hood doesn't block out as much light as you like. Again, many of these are now universal, designed to fit a number of different brands and styles of pushchair.

Best buggy covers at a glance

  • Best all-rounder buggy cover: SnoozeShade Original Deluxe, £19.99
  • Best budget buggy cover: Koo-di Pack-It Sun and Sleep Stroller Cover, £14.99
  • Best canopy buggy cover: Dreambaby Strollerbuddy Extenda-Shade, £19.99
  • Best buggy cover for sun and sleep: Outlook Sleep Pod, £19.99
  • Best buggy cover for umbrella pushchairs: Summer Infant RayShade, £40
  • Best for iCandy pushchairs: iCandy The Screen Pushchair Sunshade, £29
  • Best universal parasol: Clair de Lune Universal Pushchair Parasol, £9.99
  • Best buggy cover for twins: Outlook Shade-a-Babe Double Buggy Cover, £25
  • Best buggy cover for travel systems: Dooky Design Universal Sunshade, £17
  • Best buggy cover for British weather: Winload Pram Parasol, £26.99

What to look for when buying a buggy cover?

When shopping for the perfect sun cover, you'll need to bear a few things in mind:

Will it fit? – Most universal covers and canopies are designed to fit a wide range of standard prams or pushchairs and will stretch to fit with adjustable ties, poppers or velcro straps. You may need a different cover for your carrycot vs the seat unit of the pushchair, although some are designed to work for both. Parasols clip onto the handle or side of the frame, so check the size of the clip compared to the chassis of your buggy.

Will I need to adjust it? – Once it's fastened on, most canopies and covers don't need to be adjusted in any way, although you may wish to unzip certain panels at different times. Parasols, on the other hand, may need to be readjusted more frequently, if you change directions or as the sun moves across the sky during the day.

What's it made from? – Look for fabrics with ventilation, air holes, or mesh panels. Most sunshades will have layers of mesh to let the air flow through, and canopies sometimes have lighter panels on the side. Parasols are more likely to be made from a non-breathable fabric, but as they don't cover the entire area, air can still get to your baby easily.

Can I see my baby? – Some buggy covers come with zip panels or windows so you can check on your child. Others (particularly the more budget options) may need to be removed for this. Canopies may have a peekaboo window in the top. If you're planning to use a cover for naps, one with a window is preferable as you can make quick safety checks without disturbing your little one.

Does it have UV protection? – Check the product description (and our product guide below) to see if the cover provides UV protection, and how much. UV protection is particularly important when covering carrycots, as newborns can't wear sunscreen. Older babies (6+ months) should still wear high factor sun protection in sunny weather, even if you're planning to use a buggy cover or canopy.

Is a buggy cover safe?

Although the Lullaby Trust (which advises on safer sleeping for babies) advises that no cover at all is best, it agrees that if your baby needs protection from the sun, a clip on sunshade or parasol is the better option. It's important not to use a regular blanket or muslin cloth, as these could cause the temperature to rise so much in your pram it could put your baby’s life at risk. Look for a buggy cover from a reputable brand that has been rigorously tested for air-permeability. Good ventilation is key, as are regular checks on your little one.

Here's our pick of the best buggy sunshades, covers and parasols:

1. SnoozeShade Original Deluxe, £19.99

– Best all-rounder

snoozeshade original deluxe

Age suitability: From newborn | UV protection: 97.5% | Features: Zip front

Invented by a mum after the birth of her first child, the SnoozeShade launched in 2010 and is now sold worldwide. Perfect for use from birth, the SnoozeShade Original Deluxe blocks 97.5% of the sun’s UV rays, is made from an air permeable mesh, and has a zip front so you can take a peek as your little one sleeps.

The SnoozeShade Original Deluxe can be suspended over a carrycot / pram, or pulled down over a pushchair, simply by fastening the straps onto the chassis in different ways. SnoozeShade claims it'll fit all types of pram and pushchair, with handy demo videos to show you how to adapt it to different ones. There’s also versions for car seats (from £24.99) and for travel cots (£54.99), as well as a range designed specifically for older babies over 6 months.

Pros: Covers the entire buggy, good sun protection
Cons: Has to be unzipped to see baby

Available from: Amazon and SnoozeShade

2. Koo-di Pack-It Sun and Sleep stroller cover, £14.99

– Best budget buy

Koo-di Pack-It Sun Sleep Stroller Cover

Age suitability: From newborn | UV protection: 93% | Features: Pocket on hood

This good value buggy cover doesn’t have as many features as some of the others, but it is a cheaper alternative if you aren’t after something with too many bells and whistles.

It’s made from a ventilated mesh, and its Velcro fastenings allow it to be used on a 4-wheeler or 3-wheeler pushchair.

Washable at 40C, it packs neatly into the integrated pocket in the hood, and can be attached to your buggy.

Pros: Good value, has a storage pocket
Cons: No zip to check on your baby

Available from: Amazon

3. Dreambaby Strollerbuddy Extenda-Shade, £24.50

– Best canopy

Dreambaby Stroller Buddy Extenda Stroller Cover

Age suitability: From newborn | UV protection: UPF50+ | Features: Mesh sides, folds for storage

Ideal for parents who want shade rather than a full cover, the Dreambaby Strollerbuddy Extenda-Shade has an extra long canopy to protect your little one from the sun’s glare. It comes packaged as a small circle in its own bag, and pops open to become a flexible shade that'll fit over most makes of pushchair.

Made from a fabric with UPF50+ sun protection, it also has mesh sides, and velcros securely to the top and sides of your pushchair. Plus it comes in either black, or a funky Australian animal print, which we love!

Pros: Provides good shade, comes in cute prints
Cons: Not so good for sleep, very large

Available from: Amazon

4. Outlook Sleep Pod, £19.99

– Best for sun and sleep

outlook sleep pod buggy cover

Age suitability: From newborn | UV protection: 70% | Features: Viewing panel | Colour: Black, Grey

Offering both sun and light protection, the Outlook Sleep Pod can be used open – with a mesh window at the front that allows your child to see out while still blocking UV rays – or closed, which keeps out the light for uninterrupted naps on the go.

It should fit most carrycots, pushchairs, and car seats, with elasticated hooks that make fitting it really easy. This is a product that grows with your baby, and the sun protection window is great if you have a baby who refuses to wear a hat or sunglasses.

Pros: Works for sleep and sunshine, easy to fit
Cons: Some babies may not like being covered while awake

Available from: Baby Planet and Cheeky Rascal

5. Summer Infant RayShade, £9.99

– Best for umbrella pushchairs

Summer Infant Rayshade

Age suitability: From newborn | UV protection: 99% - UPF50+ | Features: Drinks pockets

Another option that won’t completely cover your pushchair, the Summer Infant RayShade is designed to provide maximum UV protection for your baby, whatever angle the sun is at. It works particularly well on umbrella-style pushchairs and those with a long, narrow shape.

The UV protective pushchair cover extends the stroller canopy coverage from head to toe, attaching quickly and easily to most canopied pushchairs. It doesn't create complete darkness for naps but pulled right down it should restrict light enough for an older baby to sleep.

The water-repellent fabric also keeps off the rain, and it has a hidden pocket to hold drinks, plus it folds into itself for compact storage.

Pros: Great shade coverage and sun protection, good for older kids
Cons: Design isn't as well-suited to carrycots

Available from: Plusshop

6. iCandy The Screen Pushchair Sunshade, £29

– Best for iCandy pushchairs

iCandy The Screen Pushchair Sunshade

Age suitability: From newborn | UV protection: 99% - UPF50+ | Features: Mesh netting

This buggy cover comes in a lovely compact storage bag and can be used on all iCandy pushchairs, strollers and carry cots. It has mesh netting in the centre which means you can see your baby without having to remove the whole thing.

Its mesh construction protects from the sun and insects, with UV protection of 99%. It gives a nice enclosed environment for naps, so if you're looking for something like this for your journeys with your iCandy stroller then look no further.

Pros: Folds up small, provides more room for wriggly babies
Cons: Takes up a lot of space when open, not good for naps, restricted to iCandy pushchairs

Available from: John Lewis and Direct4Baby

7. Clair de Lune Universal Pushchair Parasol, £9.99

– Best universal parasol

Age suitability: From newborn | UV protection: N/A| Features: Multiple colours, fits most pushchairs

If you don't fancy a cover that has to be fastened on, a parasol offers shade that can easily be adjusted throughout the day.

This universal style has a strong clamp that clicks onto most pushchair chassis', and the central section of the handle bends to allow you to move it with the sun.

The classic black should suit most buggies, you prefer something that's pretty as well as practical, there's also a white broderie anglaise version.

Pros: Simple to use, easy to store
Cons: May need to be adjusted a lot, blocks baby's view

Available from: Amazon and Samuel Johnston

8. SnoozeShade Double Stroller and Pram Sun Shade, £44.99

– Best for double buggies

Double Stroller and Pram Sun Shade

Age suitability: From newborn | UV protection: 97% | Features: Adjustable length

Fitting over most major brands of side-by-side twin buggies, this double version of the ever-popular SnoozeShade cover can be used to protect from the sun, or as an insect net or even for light showers. There are two layers that zip down independently, depending on the coverage you want.

It features air-permeable mesh across the front and has UPF50+ and claims to reduce UV by 97%. Home tester Ama, who tested it with her 2 sons, thought it was "brilliant for sun protection especially when they were asleep" and also loved that "it was really great for privacy and keeping hands away from the babies."

Pros: Great option for double buggies
Cons: Expensive, but it does do twice the work!

Available from: Amazon

9. Dooky Design Universal Sunshade, £17

– Best for travel systems

Dooky Design Pushchair Cover

Age suitability: From newborn | UV protection: Upf 40+ UV | Features: Split rings for fitting

The closest you'll get to draping a muslin over the pram – but with guaranteed ventilation – the simple design of the Dooky Design Sunshade features split rings on one end and tie strings, with velcro to roll it up and down. It's available in different colours and patterns, too.

The unique shape makes it a good option if you have a travel system and click your car seat into your pushchair frame, as it can be rolled up to create extra shade for those short walks, but also works on most carrycots and pushchairs. It's machine washable.

Pros: Easy to use, fits on car seat, pram or pushchair
Cons: No viewing window, baby may undo ties

Available from: Kidly and Amazon

10. Joolz Parasol, £39.95

– Best asymmetrical parasol

Joolz parasol

Age suitability: From newborn | UV protection: Upf 50+ UV | Features: Bendable handle | Colour: Navy blue, Gorgeous grey, Marvellous green, Awesome anthracite, Brilliant black, Premium pink, Modern blue, Timeless taupe, Canyon terracotta

Ever seen a parasol this shape? With an asymmetric shape to offer extra shade, this Joolz parasol is designed specifically to offer good coverage whilst still remaining compact enough to fold down when not in use. This generously-sized parasol clips onto your pushchair to keep your baby protected from the elements and is bendable to get the perfect angle for your baby.

The parasol comes in grey which is neutral enough to suit most Joolz pushchairs but also comes in lots of lovely colours to choose from such as marvellous green, timeless taupe and canyon terracotta.

Pros: Asymmetric shape ensures coverage, lots of colours to pick from
Cons: Restricted to Joolz pushchairs

Available from: Joolz

How we chose our 10 of the Best

When choosing and testing these buggy covers, sunshades, parosols we considered fit, material, being able to see your baby and UV protection.

Our 10 of the Best lists are compiled by qualified and experienced parenting journalists. They rely on a number of sources, including our independent reviews, testing undertaken during the MadeForMums Awards, and feedback from our home testing panel and Top Testers Club. Each year thousands of products are put through their paces by hundreds of parents across the country on behalf of MadeForMums, to ensure we’re bringing you honest and true reviews and recommendations.

Our list is not an ordered ranking from 1-10, instead it is a carefully selected group of tried-and-tested products, each of which we believe is best for a different situation or requirement. We don’t just tell you what is best, we help you discover what is best for your family.

About the author

Gemma Cartwright is Consumer and Commerce Editor at MadeForMums and has over 15 years experience in lifestyle and consumer journalism. She's also mum to a toddler and has tested parasols, covers and sunshades on a number of different pushchairs.

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