Updated January 7, 2020
I put a lot of thought into what I wear to the parks for many reasons.
I consider going to Disneyland a privilege and I dress like it. That doesn’t always translate to an actual dress and heels, but I do tend to wear my cuter clothes to the parks. It makes me feel more put together and when I feel like that, I’m a whole lot nicer to be around.
Why else do I dress up for the parks? For pictures. I take more photos in the park than I do at most events. Twice now I’ve ended up using a picture from a visit for our holiday card. I have several photographs framed and on our walls from Disneyland. I probably wouldn’t use them as much if we looked like a mess.
In this article
Shoes I Recommend
First, absolutely wear what you’re used to. Don’t break in a pair of new shoes at the parks. If you shop for your trip in advance, leave a couple of weeks to walk around in the shoes you bought.
Here are my favorite shoe options for Disneyland:
One of my favorite brand of shoes is OluKais. I wear their Ohana Flip Flops every day, in the park or not, and can’t say enough good about them. They’re podiatrist recommended and provide great support.
Pehueas by OluKai are just as good. Find those at this link.
Accessories I Recommend
- For sun protection, of course, a hat works well. But, I also feel like a hat keeps me looking pulled together. I don’t want to fuss with my hair throughout the day, so I often wear a hat. If I don’t start out with it, I pack one for later in the day.
- Minnie ears are not only cute, but functional. I wear them at almost every visit now because they serve as a headband to keep my hair back. They look cute in photographs, too! Check the Shop Disney app for lots of cute options.
- A colorful pashmina scarf is useful in so many ways, above and beyond wearing it to stay warm. If it gets chilly unexpectedly, you can use it as a blanket for a little one. It can cover a stroller for nap time. It stores easily in your backpack and can even be tied onto your stroller. The one I use most often is a bright turquoise which photographs well. These can be found at most department stores, online and in boutiques. Larger than a scarf, they can be used as a wrap. You’ll often see one of these tied onto my purse when I’m not wearing it.
My Bag and what is Packed in my Bag
First, which bag do I use?
I have several. My favorite is from RAREFORM. I love these bags because they’re affordable, eco-friendly, and loaded with many useful features.
Also, they’re made from recycled billboard. So, the material is easy to wipe clean. One more thing! No two are alike since they’re created for billboard material.
They have several awesome bags, but my favorite is the Classic Tote. I use it over my shoulder and then also as a cross-body, as it comes with a long, adjustable strap that can be attached and removed. Cross body bags are most ideal in the parks because many attractions will allow you to keep the bags on. If you prefer a backpack, no problem. But, they’ll have to be taken off in most cases.
Here is my Classic Tote, accompanying me on a ride at the Carousel of Progress in Disney World.
Want one of your own? Shop at this link and use code DAILYCASEY20 for 20% off everything they sell.
Also, in my bag, that is related to what we wear:
- A princess dress – For my daughter. Even if she leaves the house telling me she won’t want to wear it, she might want to later in the day and I’d rather be prepared than be tempted to indulge on-site.
- My makeup bag (with deodorant) – To freshen up throughout the day, especially if it’s a hot one.
- Essential oils – I keep several of these on hand for stress-relief and in place of perfume.
- Extra hair accessories – In case my daughter breaks a rubber band or loses a hair pin.
- Kids N Toddler ponchos – It rarely rains in Anaheim, but you don’t want to be caught without coverage for your cute clothes in case it does. Ponchos at the park are pricey!
My Favorite Outfit to Wear to the Parks
I wear leggings to Disneyland on at least half my visits. They’re so nice to have for chilly mornings and nights.
Wear them under a dress or tunic and then take them off mid-day if they get too warm. Bring a cardigan to wear over your dress and remove it as needed for the weather. Both leggings and a cardigan can be added or removed, depending on the weather.
Temperatures at Disneyland
Although SoCal is known for perfect weather, night time does bring chilly temps and you want to be prepared. We dress in layers and always have something on hand for cold weather – even during warmer months. Year round, you will almost always need a sweater for the evening hours.
Check out the lows and highs for each month in our area:
January – 48/71
February – 48/71
March – 51/73
April – 53/76
May – 57/78
June – 61/81
July – 65/87
August – 65/89
September – 63/87
October – 58/82
November – 52/76
December – 47/70
Ideas on What to Wear
*A simple, sleeveless dress can transform from morning to daytime to nighttime. I bring leggings to wear until it gets warm and then add them again at night when I’m cold. I also wear a sweater when it gets chilly.
*Here is a similar dress to what I’m wearing above, but with leggings and a sweater. It all works together and requires little packing on my part. Leggings are lightweight and don’t take up a lot of room in my bag and I usually tie my sweater onto my purse when I’m not wearing it.
Some other ideas for dressing:
- Yoga pants, long sleeve t-shirt, pashmina scarf and mary janes.
- Maxi dress, light sweater, and moccasins.
- Jeans, tunic, light sweater, moccasins, and hat.
- Leggings, casual dress, sweater, Keens and hat.
I can usually use one of these combinations for day to night wear, but I don’t get cold easily. Some might want a heavier jacket for night time.
Keep in mind, you’ll likely walk 10+ miles during a single day at the park, so a work out is included in your visit. That often keeps my body temperature up and I feel less of a need for a heavy coat.
Take a look at my post on the logistics of Disneyland to know where to find lockers in case you need to store coats or other gear.
Going the Extra Mile
I’m a big fan of over-doing things and dressing for Disneyland is no exception. Dapper Day comes and goes each year, but I’ve been told a few times that I dress like it’s Dapper Day every time I go. I can live with that.
Here are Lainey and me at Dapper Day in 2014:
And, with my super gorgeous husband a couple of years later:
And, while Dapper Day dressing isn’t for everyone, I do have some ideas on how to add a little extra to your outfit to look and feel cute:
- Minnie Ears – As mentioned above, they’re as useful as they are cute. And, I always feel put together with my hair pulled back out of my face.
- Jewelry – I wear earrings, a watch, bracelets and more to Disney. I know that’s not for everyone, so consider even just a cute statement necklace to add interest to your outfit. You can still be comfortable, but cute, at the parks.
- Hats – Men and women can wear hats for both comfort and style. The Mad Hatter (on site in three locations at Disneyland) has all sorts of fun options, or you can stop by Target prior to your trip for something a little more fashionable. A hat is the easiest way not to have to deal with your hair.
What Kids Should Wear
My children are almost always dressed in patterned clothing because we are messy and I can’t stand to see stains on their clothes. So, plaids or printed pieces work best for us. They also wear Star Wars or Marvel gear, of course.
I also recommend layering for children. My older son often wears shorts, a t-shirt and hoodie. He doesn’t get cold often. My middle son wears pants and a short sleeve shirt with a hoodie tied around his waist. My daughter wears jeans or leggings with dresses or tunics like me and then adds a sweater at night.
Shoes might be the most important selection you make for your children. If a little one starts his or day without socks, pack some. You’ll likely need them later. Comfy shoes make all the difference for tired feet that are walking, essentially, double what we are with their tiny legs.
Kids N Toddler has a huge selection of licensed apparel at a fraction of the cost of what you will find at the parks. They have free shipping and returns, too! Definitely check them out for kids’ clothes.
See the look on my daughter’s face here? This is the look of defeat. Of mom being right. Her furry kitten heels (Lord give me strength) didn’t make it out of Mickey’s Parking Garage. Good thing mom had Toms in her backpack. Why am I speaking in third person?
Check this out! We almost look like a normal family here.
Disney Bounding occurs when park guests wear clothes that identify with a popular Disney character without being in actual costume. Costumes are not allowed in the park – with the exception of special events – so Disney Bounding is a way to emulate your favorite character without the actual costume.
***Visit my Disney Style Board on Pinterest for other ideas on what to wear to the park, for Disney Bounding ideas and more.
What About When it Rains?
First, be sure to buy ponchos prior to your trip. Kids N Toddler sells well made, thick ponchos that will keep you dry on the rainiest days. They offer free shipping and returns. Check them out for sure! This page includes a link to their shop and a discount code for when you buy.
It rarely rains at Disneyland, but when it does, there are plenty of places to take cover.
And, if you know it’s going to rain prior to your visit, don’t panic. In fact, a rainy day at Disneyland provides you with the chance to ride and do more than what you would be able to on a bright and sunny day, so have no fear.
You should dress appropriately, however. Review my post on how to deal with the rain at Disneyland and consider what I suggest on how to be prepared. Water-resistant shoes are a must.
Recently, on a day with rain in the forecast, I wore this:
It was a chilly day and I knew I’d need the rain boots for later on. The leggings kept me warm and I had an extra pair in my bag should the ones I was wearing get wet from the rain. When jeans get wet in the rain, they stay wet. Leggings don’t stay as wet and with another pair to change into, I was set.
I absolutely adore my pair of Hunter Original Tall Red Rainboots because they’re just about the cutest thing ever.
Being prepared can make all the difference in your Disneyland visit. Looking good (which translates to feeling good for me) will make for a great day, too!
Bottom line: Be comfortable, but like what you’re wearing. Don’t put all your effort into your kids and forget about yourself.
Don’t stray too far from what you already feel comfortable in. I wouldn’t buy shoes just for your visit and throw them on day 1 hoping the work. Wear what you know works for you.
Layer, layer, layer. Can’t stress that enough. Leggings, a dress and a sweater typically work for me for this very reason. But, you can find your own version of that idea.
Don’t miss my “I Recommend” page for a list of companies that I suggest you consider while planning your trip. Many of those listed have apparel and many include discounts for Disneyland Daily readers. Be sure to find:
- Kids N Toddler
- Libby Tees and the Park Package
- Your Fairy Godmother Couture
- Bitts & Pieces
- Kathy’s Kreations
Hashtag your Disneyland outfits with #DISNEYLANDDAILY so I can see what you’re wearing. I’d love to get inspiration from you, too!