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How to Build a Snowman: 5 Tips for Perfection

Updated: May 17, 2023


Whether you'r partial to Olaf, Frosty or Old Man Winter, here’s how to make the perfect snowman every time.

Some of our guests experience snow for the very first time during their stay. Others are long-time snow lovers in search of cozy cabin vibes that let them experience the cold weather from their comfortable spot beside the fireplace. And some even strive to spend as much time in the snow as possible, skis and snowboards in tow.

No matter how many times you’ve experienced that white, magical, fluffy stuff falling from the sky, there’s something about it that always leaves us dying to build our very own snowman. Regardless of how old you are, some things just never get old, and building a great snowman in a winter wonderland is one of them.

But before you get started on this fun activity, it’s important to remember the 5 things that will help you build the perfect snowman - one even Frosty will be jealous of!

1. Location, location, location. The first thing you need to think about is where you want Mr. Frosty to live. The perfect spot to build a snowman is a flat surface, surrounded by plenty of fresh snow out of direct sunlight. You are hoping for packable snow, not powdery snow, and definitely not slushy snow. You don't have to be a snow scientist however the right kind of snow is important. Pick a location that can be enjoyed by yourself or others. It’s important that you’re able to admire your finished work, after all! Choose a spot that can be seen from the road, the back door, or those passing by to add an extra touch of joy to the winter season. Make sure your snowman is not facing the wrong way and can be seen from different directions.

2. Proportions are important. Whether you’re shooting for a giant snowman or a more humble-sized friend for Frosty, you’ll have to start with the bottom sphere. A good snowman is made up of three tightly packed balls of snow, with the largest one on the bottom. The traditional snowman is composed of three balls stacked on top of one another. The bottom round ball is the biggest. It forms the foundation. The bottom section of your snowman will set the stage for the whole man. So this is where it's important to put in the hard work. Why not enlist some family and friends to help. It will be much more fun than building a snowman alone. The middle ball forms the belly and that's the next biggest in size. To build a snowman with a traditional look, you stick branches into the belly for arms. The third ball is much smaller and forms the head, to which facial features are added to make up the snowman's face.

family making snowball

3. Roll your snowballs. First, you need to make a big snowball. packs some snow together, then put it on the ground and start rolling it around. As you push your snowball around, it will accumulate more and more snow. The rolling process is important. Don't just push in one direction or you will never get a round shape. Roll your ball one way, then reverse directions and roll it another way. Pack it down as you go. You will want to be wearing gloves. Make a tight ball and shave off uneven areas. Keep going until your snowball is at your desired size for the bottom of your snowman.

Repeat this step for balls 2 and 3. When crafting your snowman, make the second sphere or middle section about 50% smaller than the first, and the third sphere about 50% smaller than the second. This will not only help you create the best snowman shape, but it’ll also ensure that you aren’t overloading the bottom sphere with too much weight, keeping your snowman a bit more structurally sound. Before lifting your second ball on top of the base, the best way to ensure it sits securely is to scoop out some snow from the top of the first ball to make a rounded indentation, in which the next ball can sit. Careful when lifting your middle snowball. When working with heavy snow, having another set of hands will really help.


4. Pack snow tightly. It’s important that each piece of your snowman is consistently created in order to stand the test of time. Packing each snow sphere tightly with enough snow the right way will help them lock in the cold and stay frozen for a long time, standing up to multiple days of standing out in the sun. When rolling your snowballs, it's a good idea to give them a tight squeeze every once in a while in order to keep them tightly rolled.

4 snowman designs

5. Go wild with decorations. Here comes the fun part! While a classic snowman usually has coal eyes, a carrot for a nose, and a top hat standing tall, there’s no reason you can’t shake things up and make something totally unique to you and your family. For the coolest snowman, use some of your own hats and gloves or find things in nature that you can add to your snowman. Making pilot holes for the nose and mouth will help objects from popping out. Black rocks make great buttons and flower pots make neat hats. Try using a row of pebbles for the mouth.

Finally, be sure to give your snowman a name and write it in the snow. Add some more snow people and even some snow angels to the scene. Don’t forget to snap a photo of your expert snowman-building skills so you can remember your winter fun forever! After all, he’s bound to melt eventually.


After a fun day of snowball fights and snowman building, few things compare to coming home to your very own warm and cozy cabin—a cabin so nice your kids (and you!) might not ever want to leave.

Complete your mountain adventures in Big Bear with a blazing fire, warm apple cider, and an unforgettable cabin stay.

Midnight Moon Cabins offers an array of modern luxury dog-friendly cabin rentals right in the heart of Big Bear Lake. Bear Mountain and Snow Summit are just a short drive away, as are the many other fun activities in the village and surrounding area.

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