Baby Bath Tubs

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Bathtub for a toddler

Feb 2010

I need a recommendation for a Toddler Tub. Our apartment has only a shower, we've been using a infant/toddler tub for our 15 month old since she was born. She's very tall, and the tub we have is getting to be too small. We could use our kitchen sink, but it's not very big either. I've seen some inflatable models, but I'd prefer something more stable. I've thought about getting a large tupperware container, but a lot have sharp little plastic bits inside. What do you use?

We measured our stall shower and then went to the hardware store (Orchard, I think) and bought the largest steel wash tub that would fit in our shower. We got it when our son was about six months old and he stills bathes in it at 5.5 years, although he's getting a little big for it! We store the tub in the shower when we aren't using it and take it out when we take showers. Our toddler girl uses it too now. Andi

One Step Ahead has the largest tub we found and our 3 year old still uses it daily as we also do not have a tub. milena

We got a tub at Ranch 99 (Pacific East Mall) to bath our daughter when she was born. It's just a simple oval tub. When she was an infant and couldn't sit up, we just held her in our arms and bathed her. She's now 2 and sits comfortably in there. Sometimes she even tries to swim in it. I think it should fit in a shower stall as well. Someone I know bought a large tall plastic tub, kind of like what you'd buy to put drinks in at a party. Her kid is 2 as well and soaks in them. It's definitely smaller in terms of width but taller, which is great for soaking. For both, we do bath outside and then put the kid inside the tub to soak and play. I don't know how easy it would be to wash in the tall tub. anon

Which bathtub for new baby?

June 2003

Can anyone recommend a good bathtub for a baby? There are tons out there and I can't tell what is good and ends up being useful. I want to put it on my gift registry, but I don't know what to ask for. mom to be

I don't remember the brand name of the tub we used, but I'd recommend you get one that has a nylon/mesh sling insert to use in the first months. It cradles the baby nicely and suspends him/her in the water. Sally

I don't think you can go wrong w/ a baby bathtub. They are all generally the same, but it is really helpful to have some sort of fabric, removable sling in it so that whn they are really tiny they are supported. I think our tub is an evenflo. It has a plug in the bottom that lightens if the water is too hot, which is kinda nice. Molly G

I have and like The First Years' Sure Comfort Tub Deluxe. It has a sling for newborns, one side has a backrest for infants and the opposite side for toddlers. It fits in kitchen sinks - both the kind with one basin, or with two separate basins. My son is only 3 months though, so don't know if its still as great for older babies. anon

For a newborn, I don't have much of a recommendation. Most moms I know actually prefer not to use a tub, but one of those sponge things, in the kitchen sink. We had a baby tub handed down from a neigbor and it worked well for us, but I don't even know what brand or type it was. But for an older baby -- as soon as he or she can sit up -- and young toddler (who will outgrow it sometime around 20-24 months), there's no question that you MUST get an inflatable tub! SnugTub is the most commonly available brand, I think. Compared to using your regular full size bathtub, they're more comfortable and safer for the baby, and they save on water and energy. Compared to using a hard plastic baby tub, it's useful much longer and allows more room for the child to play with the water, and again the soft surface is more comfortable and safer. Plus, you can deflate it and pack it for travel. And they cost less than $20. What's not to love? We were very sad when our son outgrew his! Holly

The BEST Bathtub is made by SAFETY FIRST. It is bright blue and has a yellow interior. It folds up in thirds, which is great for storage. The yellow interior literally acts like baby glue. Best of all, you can get one at Toys R Us (I've seen them at Darla's too on occasion) for under $15. I think you can see it on line at Toys R US website Leslie

We like the inflatable bathtubs that you place in your own bathtub. They travel well, alleviating the late night trip to the target store at your destination. There are two sizes, one for infants and one for toddlers. When she was very small and wiggly we bathed her in the sink on a little mesh hammock that was a big help. As for plastic on the counter tubs, I think they are fairly interchangeable. Babies do splash a lot, so you want one with a decent lip and you don't need all the gizmos that come with some (pitchers etc.) Jessica

I just had to offer a contrasting opinion to the baby bath tub debate. I think they are unneccessary completely. We were given one with our first baby..maybe we used it twice. After her umbilical cord fell off, we just would either take her into the bath with us, or wash her in the regular tub. When they can sit up, what is the point of the little inflatable things? You are in the bathroom with them anyway, right? It just seems to be another baby ''product'' to have to buy and then store. You really don't need one. parent of two clean children, who never needed a baby tub

I think that the best bathtub was the Euro Bathtub by Primo. You can purchase it at or, I believe, at Babies R Us. It has 2 different positions that cradle both a baby and a toddler. It's great! Tunisha

We barely used our baby bath tub either. Our wonderful lactation consultant mentioned bathing with the little one and nursing. So our routine for a long time(til age 1 or so) was that I (the mom) would bath with our daughter, nurse her, then dad would pick her up, dry her off, put on diaper and get her to sleep while I would luxuriate in a reheated bath. I found it so lovely to have that close time WITH her (and then WITHOUT her). It saves your back too. Kristine

We borrowed a convertible bathtub from some friends, for our son's first few months. It is made by the first years and has a few positions. It was nice as it has a foam back and holds the baby in a seated position. The seat back folds into a lid, which is useful later on when your child needs a step stool. After our son was sitting up, we switched to an inflatable tub which we got at toys R us. It fits right into the tub, saving lots of water. Since it is soft, it cushions the baby so he can't bang his knees and elbows. We have also used it outside as a small splash pool for him. He loves it. SA

Bathtub seat for giving baby a bath in the tub?

Feb 2003

We give our 8 month baby a bath (almost) every night. It involves one of us getting in the bathtub with her. She is starting to get very active and I use all of my might to hold her. Can anyone recommend a bath tub seat that they think is effective? I want to have the option of not taking a bath with her but still be sure she won't squirm and be submerged in water. I've seen the inflatable ones and the ones that swivel and stick to the base of the tub. Can anyone discuss the pros and cons of each? I definitely want something that is geared towards the coming months -- rather than by another product that she soon might outgrow. Thanks. bath mom

We used a Safety First swiveling bath seat with suction cups on the bottom from the time my son (now 2 yrs. old) outgrew the baby bathtub until just recently. He was quite content to sit in the seat (we did make sure he could reach the toys he wanted), and it made bathtime a lot easier--we could use our hands for washing and playing, not restraining a slippery child! I think it helped him get the idea that the bathtub is a place to sit (not stand). He can get out of it by himself now (can't remember when that started), but hardly ever tried to do that until the water was all gone and it was time to get out of the tub anyway. We stopped using it in the last couple of weeks mostly in order to give him a little more freedom to play, since he is now quite good about sitting down when he gets into the tub. (His legs are getting long enough so that it's a little harder to get him into the seat without banging his shins, but it does still fit--and he's a bit taller than average.) I think the suction cups and the rigid shape are good--I never felt the swivel action was that big a deal. Can't compare it to the inflatable kind because I didn't try those. We hang it up on a towel bar at the end of the tub between baths (using a piece of cord and an S-hook), which leaves plenty of room for showering. Lisa

We used one of those rubber bath mats that has suction cups on the bottom. It gives much more freedom of movement than a seat which I agree would seem to be potentially much more unsafe. fiona

I have a bath seat you can have for free if you'd like. It is a First Alert, plastic with suction cups on the bottom (one of the three suction cups broke off, but we never had a problem with it moving or becoming unstuck). I can't remember what age we started or stopped using it, but it lasted quite a while. We found it very easy to use and the baby liked it fine. It doesn't spin around (a friend had warned me that those are difficult to deal with). Anyway, I can't bring myself to throw it out and add it to the landfill, but it is also not resaleable because of the missing suction cup, so I'd like to give it away as it is still perfectly usable! Please email if interested. Tracy

We had one of the small inflatable tubs -- a ''Snug Tub'', which we used from the time our son was about 7 or 8 months until we felt he was able to sit in the big tub alone (about 18 months). For us, it worked wonderfully well. My son seemed to find it comfortable, it kept him safe (the times he toppled over, he fell against the nice inflatable padded sides, with no problem), it was easy to clean, and it lasted just fine. Also, we could fold it up into a small package and take it with us if we traveled for more than a couple of days. Karen

We used an inflatable tub and LOVED it. I always thought the plastic seats seemed very awkward and never tried one, so I can't compare, but the inflatable tub worked great. It saves time and water since it's smaller than the regular bathtub, it keeps the toys contained, and provides a nice soft surface to sit on and cushiness in case of slips -- much nicer to bonk your head on an inflatable than on the side of the regular tub! And it's terrific for travel, too, since it can be deflated and packed easily; we used it at Grandma's house, in a hotel and at vacation rentals. We didn't usually bother to deflate and reinflate it for every bath at home; it's small enough to just be stashed in a corner of the bathroom when not in use. It's even cute. And it was inexpensive. I bought ours on eBay for something like $10, but they're available at Target and similar places for not a whole lot more.

He was about 5 or 6 months when we got it, and he started to look a bit cramped in it (not enough room for the bath toys, though I don't think he was actually uncomfortable!) at around 23 months, so we switched to the big tub. I think 18 months of regular use for $10 is a pretty good value for a piece of baby equipment, and it's still in good enough shape to use again for (as-yet-hypothetical) baby #2. Holly

A friend recommended this simple, yet brillant solution and it works great - a plastic laundry basket! Just put one of those bath pillows or even a folded towel in the bottom so baby can't slide around. She can safely splash around and play while you bathe her. The only problem, for me at least because I'm short, is that it is somewhat of a strain on my back. I got a very short stool to sit on, which helps some. She will eventually outgrow it, but there are many other obvious uses for it. Melanie

What we did when our daughter was that age (actually, since she was old enough to sit up on her own) was just to let her sit by herself in the tub with just a few inches of water. That way she could splash and there was enough water to wash her, but not to make her unstable. It goes without saying that we did not leave her in the bathroom alone... Gen

I can't speak to the inflatable tub seats because I never used them. But having used the swivel tub seat that suctions to the bath tub floor, I cannot stress strongly enough: DO NOT PUT YOUR BABY IN THIS SEAT. I was transitioning my son from an infant tub (that I placed on the floor of our tub) and was worried that he couldn't support himself on the slippery floor. So I bought this type of tub seat. Then came the day when he was 9 months old that he managed to slide down under the first bracket of the chair. I had been sitting there with him the whole time, and I still couldn't keep him from slipping. His head would not fit through the top opening. The only way I found to get him out was by unsuctioning the tub and drawing him down below the ''feet'' of the tub. But the tub was full of water, and I didn't want my baby to go under water. So I was bracing my son to keep his head above the water while I let water out of the tub while he was screaming bloody murder. I was scared to death. I am happy to report that I got my son out without any injury. I never used the seat again. If you're worried about slippage, I highly recommend putting a towel or two on the bath tub floor or buying a foam rubber bath insert to help give your baby some traction.

There has been a movement to recall and ban these types of tubs, but even though there have been more than 70 deaths associated with these seats (see, the CPSC determined the deaths were caused by parental neglect. The logic is that the babies drowned because the parents either left the bathroom or weren't alert enough. But to this day I never leave my son unattended in the bath (and he's 3 now), and still I had my own scare that could have turned out very badly. So I urge you not to get this type of tub seat. Gwynne

When looking for a tub, I checked (kids/family health diapers/bath) and the Primo Euro baby bathtub was highly recommended. We purchased it and it's great for both newborns and toddlers. It's $25 and usually sold out at Babies R Us (check back with them often). The only con is that it is large and it could be difficult to store. Pauline

We started using the blue, swivel seat in the bath (the one that sticks to the tub floor with suction cups)for our son when he first started sitting up, around 6 months old. He's over a year old now and we still use it and like it. It doesn't look like he'll outgrow it any time soon. I feel like he's very safe in there. I usually sit next to the tub while he splashes around happily with his toys. And the open design is nice because it doesn't impede access to critical washing areas. I also like it that he is in the seat because he can't reach the shampoo or any other thing (god forbid a rasor!)left accidentally on the side of the tub. Another nice thing is that its small enough to store under the sink, and acts like a container for his bath toys. I think we got the seat for a little over $20. It was definitely worth it. I've never used the blow up kind so I can't compare. a solo bather

I would borrow one of those plastic swivel seats before you purchase. My first child never wanted to go into it, and the second baby did, but for a short while (though I guess it was long enough for her to get a little more stable sitting on her own). With the first, we bought an inflatable tub from Right Start that fits in your own bathtub...we still had to be vigilant, but she had a lot of fun in it. We couldn't use that with #2 because they tend to bathe together, so we used the plastic seat for a while (maybe two months?), until she protested. However, by then we felt more comfortable with her just in the tub, with a parent close by. suzanne

June 1999

To the parent whose child stands up in the tub: There are little plastic bath chairs which have suction cups to stick to the tub. The child sits in the chair, in the water. It worked really well for me when my daughter was learning to stand and walk and wanted to keep practicing in the bath! They cost about $10 at Home Depot or Payless (or whatever it's called these days).

My 9 month old also loves to stand. He started to try it in the bathtub, so I went out and bought a bath seat. It is made by First Alert; Safety First also makes one, but it looks rather uncomfortable. Both models have suction cups, but the First Alert one has an adjustable tray and a smooth backrest. The Safety First just has a waist-high ring. One friend of mine uses a small laundry basket, which she says works fine. All of these options do not use an infant bathtub -- you just put the safety device directly in the big tub. Naturally, you still need to supervise your baby in the tub, but these seats mean you can breathe a little easier.

I would try to be creative in your thinking and figure out a way to allow your child to explore and practice new skills without it being dangerous. Can you stand right there and spot them? And then pick them up and help them to sit back down. So you are showing them they need to sit down, instead of saying, No standing. Are there other ways to help the baby get clean? Showering with them? Taking a bath with them in the bathtub so they could stand up and hold on to you? Hope these ideas help!

When my daughter was at that stage of constantly trying to stand up, I just took baths with her. That way I could support her when she tried to stand in the bath. I also told her over and over that this was only ok if I was there holding her, not if she was alone. At that crawling age, she definitely understood what I was saying, even though she wasn't talking much yet. Also, we got lots of bath toys to keep her entertained while she was in there. Before long, she learned that pulling up to stand was an outside-the-bath activity.

for the parent of the 9.5 month old who is trying to stand in the baby tub, try getting rid of the baby tub and bathing with her in the bathtub. my partner and i have been bathing with our son sans baby tub since shortly after he was born. he's now 12.5 months old. when he started to stand in the tub he would hold onto the adult in the tub or to the side of the tub. this felt safe since someone was right there to support and steady him. we also invested in a full length tub mat so our tub is not slippery. we bought one at bed bath & beyond across from cost plus in the jack london square area of oakland. it's longer than the standard tub mats and really takes care of the slippery tub issue, though it does leave circle marks on the tush! our son got accustomed to the bathtub in this way and now he can be in the tub alone (with an adult right there on the side of the tub of course). happy bathing.