What is potty-training underwear?
This type of underwear is designed to allow toddlers (18-30 months) to feel uncomfortable wetness and control their bowel movements. It can help potty-train a toddler, as the child becomes aware that something has happened when there is a leak.
The best time to introduce potty training underwear is after your child starts walking and speaking (so around 18-24 months), but you should consult with your doctor if it's earlier than this age.
Different types of potty-training underwear
There are several brands on the market which provide useful information, but here are some of the options:
- Pull-Ups Learning Designs (for girls) - these are like regular Pull-Up diapers, but they tell toddlers there's something wrong if their pants get wet.
- Pull-Ups Learning Designs (for boys) - these have a blue area to show it's okay if the pants get wet so kids know when to go to the bathroom.
- GoodNites TruFit for Girls - this type of underwear is both stylish and functional.
These training pants are available in different sizes to fit your child.
The most important thing is to find a product that allows quick absorption and control of accidents, allowing the child to feel uncomfortable wetness. Also, make sure it's user-friendly when you’re out and about during potty training.
At what age should your child use this underwear?
You should consult your doctor, but 18-30 months is the best time to try this type of training.
Why to use potty training underwear instead of diapers?
The fact that not all children take naturally to wearing diapers makes parents consider other alternatives for keeping their kids dry at night or during naps. Some choose regular underwear, while others use pads. On market also exist reusable training pants, but they tend to be less absorbent.
Potty training underwear is a great choice, as it's not very expensive and takes advantage of the child's natural potty-training instincts.
How does potty-training underwear work?
They come in different forms, with or without absorbency gel to help contain accidents. Some feature a wetness indicator that changes color when the garment is wet (usually from yellow to blue), while others have been designed for nighttime use by adding extra padding in the front.
In general, these garments are made from breathable materials such as cotton or polyester, which allows air to circulate and keep your toddler feeling dry. Sometimes they even include an outer waterproof layer. There are also easy-to-dry training pants, so toddlers can start learning how to put their clothes in the laundry without your help.
How do you choose potty-training underwear for your toddler?
The most important thing is to get a size that fits well and is not too loose or tight, with adjustable side fasteners. Another option is pull-on pants, which also feature an elastic waistband and leg cuffs for a comfortable fit. However, they're not as good at preventing leaks since they don't have elasticized or snug-fitting bands around the legs and ankles.
What should you consider when choosing potty-training underwear?
There are some things you should take into consideration before buying potty training underwear for your toddler. First, make sure it fits well, with good elasticity and adjustable side fasteners. Also, keep in mind the product description, so you know if they're easy to clean by hand or machine (as this might not be possible with some models), if they contain gel crystals, or if you need to buy extra padding.
Potty training underwear is an excellent alternative for toddlers who don't feel comfortable wearing diapers or using traditional methods, but you should still try it out before making a final decision.
Good to know: Toilet learning charts can help your child follow the steps needed to successfully potty train. If they're too hard for your toddler then stick with pull-ups until they're old enough to understand them better.
As far as accidents are concerned, try not to get angry when there's one because negative reinforcement usually make kids fearful of doing "big kid" things like using the toilet.
How much does potty-training underwear cost?
This depends on the brand and type of product you choose, ranging from a low of $10 to a high of around $30 for a pack of 8. Potty-training underwear with absorbency gel can be slightly more expensive than those without it, but they tend to work better throughout the day.
The 8 best potty-training underwear variants
- Huggies pull-ups potty training pants
This option is one of the best when it comes to potty-training underwear for kids. Suitable for toddlers weighing 35 lbs or more, this product provides leakage protection while ensuring comfort and breathability thanks to its cottony exterior. It also features an internal wetness indicator that changes color, so you can tell when your kid needs a fresh pair.
- GoodNites bedtime underwear
GoodNites are the ultimate nighttime training pants because they come with extra absorbency gel at the front of the garment, making them suitable for children who wet the bed during naps or at night. The good thing about these training pants is that they're not bulky, unlike traditional diapers. They are easy to put on within seconds, which makes them convenient if you don't want to waste time preparing your toddler every morning.
- LUVS training pants with leak guard core
These are similar to Huggies, but they're more affordable and offer an excellent fit plus stretchable sides that allow easy movement for kids. However, they lack side fasteners, which can be inconvenient when you have a kid who moves around a lot during the day or night.
- Pull-Ups boys potty training pants
This product features Disney designs on the backside, which makes them ideal for little toddlers who love their favorite characters from cartoons. The worst thing about these products is that they only come in small sizes because this brand tends to prefer thin regular cuts.
- Goodnightes nighttime bedwetting underwear
These are similar to GoodNites, but they lack the wetness indicator because they're meant to be used only during bedtime. Also, these are much more expensive than similar training pants made by other companies, being sold for over $30 at the time of writing. The good news is that next-day delivery is available when you order in bulk, so if your child wets the bed every night then this product might actually save you money in the long run.
- Potty Patty potty training panties
This option comes with a step-by detailing how toddlers should go to the bathroom (similar to toilet learning charts ), which makes it easier for them to learn how to use it without getting confused or frustrated. It's suitable for kids weighing 32 lbs or more, so it can be worn by toddlers who are 30-40 lbs.
- Underjams absorbent training pants
Although they're expensive considering what you get, these products are made to fit your child perfectly well plus their super soft material makes them ideal for little kids who hate wearing things that feel stiff. The downside is that they don't work as well as similar products during long hours, but if budget isn't an issue then this might be the potty training underwear of choice for your toddler.
- The Honest company toddler training pants
This is the most expensive option on this list because they're made with organic cotton and other materials that make them better for both your child's skin and the environment. The downside is that they don't have a wetness indicator, so you'll have to check if they need changing more often.
How can you teach your baby to use a pot?
Introduce the potty early
You can either buy a potty chair or go for a more expensive option like one of those big potties with lids, but the choice is yours. The main idea behind this method is to allow your baby to get familiarized with the concept of using the potty before you actually start training them.
Also, there are some models that come with bells and whistles to make potty training fun, so your kid should be able to learn how to do it without getting stressed out.
Use disposable diapers as learning tools
If you're not sure if your baby is ready for something permanent yet, then you can test their reaction by putting them in disposables. This teaches them that when they wet the diaper, it gets dirty and needs to be disposed of in a way that doesn't stink up your home.
Some babies will get the hang of it right away, while others will need more time to understand how their body works. This is why starting early makes this process much easier.
Make potty training fun
You can purchase special lamps or rubber ducks for this purpose so your kid learns which items are meant for use in the bathroom instead of being treated like toys. You can also place some stickers on the bathroom wall so they become familiar with what each one does, but make sure you don't stick them directly onto the walls because spills happen during potty training periods.
Teach them about privacy
Although it may seem strange for babies, they need time to come around to the idea of doing something as private as this in full view of everyone. This is why it's important for you and your partner to be able to take turns watching them during training sessions.
That way, your baby learns that using the potty is not something they should be ashamed of or feel nervous about, plus you get a short break from holding them over it each time they need to go.
Reward good behavior
It doesn't matter if you use stickers or some other method such as positive reinforcement because the main purpose behind these approaches is to teach your child what behaviors are appropriate and which ones aren't.
You can also buy special books with pictures inside so they can associate the words used with the things they see because by doing this, it will be easier for them to understand what you expect from them as their caregiver.
Don't force your kid to use the potty if they refuse
Babies and toddlers don't like change because they've become accustomed to how their daily routines work. This means that if something suddenly changes, such as placing a diaper on them and then forcing them to sit on a potty chair, it's going to make them feel uncomfortable and prompt them not only to refuse to use the toilet but also not want to wear diapers at all. If this happens, then you should just stick with diapers until they're ready for another phase of life.
What are some tips for parents who are potty-training their toddler?
Make sure your child knows how to pull down her pants before she tries it without help. Make sure you have a limited number of accidents during one day so they know if they have an accident they will wet themselves again.
When your child makes a mistake, just ignore it and put on clean underwear. It's important that accidents don't cause frustration or shame for children or parents, as this will make it harder for the child to learn from his/her mistakes. Finally, remember that patience is key! Below are some resources with more information about potty training.