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Everything You Need to Know About Training Pants

childs legs hanging from training toilet

­­If you’re reading this, you’re probably somewhere in the in-between. By that, we mean that your little one is or will soon be taking the big leap from diapers to potty. Her very first independent visit to the bathroom is a monumental milestone for potty-training parents, but it takes time and effort to reach that point. Along the way, you’ll be doing plenty of swapping back and forth between diapers and training pants, so it’s good to know a little bit about what you’re in for! This article will cover everything you need to know about this helpful potty-training tool so that you can make the transition as seamless (and maybe even a little bit fun) as possible.

What Are Training Pants?

Training pants are like the middle ground between a diaper and cloth underwear. Though they have a cloth-like texture to imitate the feel of regular underwear, they are made from more absorbent materials to help catch leaks before your little one reaches the potty. They not only help transition toddlers from one thing to another, they also encourage a gradual adjustment to independent dressing. They feature a pull-on style and are machine-washable so you can just toss them in the wash in the case of an accident and ­­­have a comfy, elastic band that makes your child feel totally grown-up. Some cloth pull-ups may also be waterproof for an extra layer of protection.

We recommend integrating training pants into your potty-training program for the following reasons:

  • Increased Independence—The elastic waist and pull-up style of training pants means your little one can go to the bathroom all by herself! They also teach basic skills like dressing and simultaneously help your child feel more confident about doing things on her own. When you opt for cloth training pants, your child will be able to feel if he or she has gone to the bathroom, which allows them to communicate accidents.
  • More Protection—Training pants feel like soft, comfortable undies but are much more protective and durable. That means that your toddler can wear them during the day and to bed and you won’t have to worry about cleaning up messes in the morning. Remember that children don’t have the best bladder control, so they will occasionally dribble even when they aren’t fully “going.” Training pants are great for those scenarios.
  • Gradual Transition—Pediatricians often do not recommend going straight from regular diapers to underwear due to the fact that the change may be a bit too overwhelming all at once. Training pants are like training wheels—they help your child get comfortable with the idea of potty training without forcing her to jump in head first. We all know that slow introductions can be very useful with cautious kids.

girls training pants

Girls Training Pants

What Kind of Training Pants Are Best?

In the quest for the perfect pair of training pants, you’ll find two main options: cloth and disposable. By and large, cloth training pants are more beneficial because they feel more like the real thing than disposable ones do. Of course, cloth training pants are also significantly more eco-friendly and will come at a greater cost savings over time. Experts recommend choosing a style made of a natural fiber (like our cotton training pants) so that your child can feel when they’re wet if they have had an accident. Cloth trainers are also great because they feel different, which helps children understand that they must do something different, too.

How to Introduce Training Pants

We recommend starting out your little one in waterproof training pants during those first few weeks of potty training before making the transition to all-cloth styles. Waterproof or plastic training pants are made for accidents and leaks, so they can handle all those oopsie moments while you’re mid-training. Make sure that, when you make the switch from diapers, you’re choosing only soft, comfortable training pants—you don’t want your child to reject them because they are irritating or fit poorly. It doesn’t hurt to pick out cute styles with fun patterns so that your child actually wants to get dressed! Make sure that your child exhibits signs of being ready for potty training before switching to pull-up diapers.

boys training pants

Boys Training Pants

Happy Potty Training

Potty training is challenging, rewarding and necessary, but you don’t have to stress too much over the process. With the right tools and strategy, you’ll be able to potty train with fewer accidents and more high-fives. Pull-up training diapers are a must for a successful transition!