We often wish our bubbas would stay little forever but time flies and before you know it, your baby will be showing signs of being ready to move out of nappies and into the world of potty training. This is a monumental transition for children and parents alike, so finding the perfect training pants that not only fit well and allow the child to feel wetness, but also help protect clothes is a must.
There will, inevitably, be accidents when learning how to use the potty or toilet for the first time and switching straight to wearing regular undies doesn’t leave much room for error. However, keeping nappies on and hoping that your child will alert you when they need to go will make the process of potty training far more arduous for all involved. Training pants are the ideal middle ground and great for using during the day as they help kids learn to associate the feeling of needing to wee with wetness, while providing some absorption to avoid a total soaking!
Wearing good quality training pants will encourage your child to tell you before they need to go therefore minimising accidents. And when they don’t quite get there in time? It won’t be such a big deal.
To help you choose, we’ve rounded up our favourite training pants that the whole family will love.
Is your child ready for training pants? Here are some things to look out for
- An interest in using the toilet or potty
- The ability to follow simple instructions
- Using words such as ‘wet’ ‘dry’ or ‘go’
First of all, it was a joy to find some training pants that offered a small size. Most brands start at 2+ and are often on the larger side, but we tried the 18-24 months and they were a great, snug fit for really little bottoms!
The outer layer is decorated with lively patterns (out tiny tester loved the farmyard theme!) which made getting them on a whole lot easier than normal. The inside is well padded, with a towelling organic cotton fabric which allows for decent absorption should there be an accident, and again the PUL layer hidden inside helps to keep clothes a little protected.
We liked the cross between slim-fit and nappy feel with these – the perfect middle ground. But really what pushed these into one of our favourites was the fact that these were the top pick from the toddlers themselves! Always good to have some co-operation when it’s time to get dressed.
They may be expensive but the Imse Vimse pants demonstrated their value pretty quickly! We immediately noticed how soft they were – considerably more so than the other pants we tried, inside and out. And also how well padded they are. For our testers who were new to the world of potty-training, this seemed to be quite a comfort as they feel as squishy and protective as a nappy.
The 100% organic cotton material means that these training pants are free-from chemical processing and also very breathable, despite the layer of waterproof polyurethane fabric concealed within.
As with all training pants, these won’t keep your little one dry if they have a big accident, but they will contain small leaks (although they will need changing), keeping clothes dry but still getting wet so that your child starts understanding the importance of getting to the toilet in time.
Just like nappies, but the next step up. These are the best eco-friendly disposable training pants we tried. The material is free-from latex, chlorine, perfumes, optical brighteners, lotions, dyes or moisturisers and there’s minimal use of absorbent gel tucked well away from your little one's skin. So great for sensitive skin! And they’re very absorbent and good at holding leaks, but as with all training pants they’re not really designed for overnight use, particularly with heavy wetters.
These are much softer than your average disposable nappy, making them comfortable to wear and a good first step towards big pants. And as an added bonus, Bambo’s production facility recycles 95% of its waste, making these an environmentally friendly option too.
Our little testers were delighted by the cute character designs on the back of each bright coloured pair of training pants, and parents were pleased by the slim fit and organic cotton material.
The fact that there is no waterproof PUL layer in these may be off putting for some, but having the extra breathability in underwear is a key factor for others. We love Zoochini for the kids who are nearly ready to fully switch to ‘proper pants’ – they’re lightweight, they’re hardly padded and they come up slightly large. Ideal for those children who need a tiny bit extra protection, just in case.
Older kids who are just getting to grips with potty training will feel really grown up in these big pants! They look and feel very much like regular boxer briefs but with a well-concealed layer for added protection against small leaks.
Our favourite bit about these was the clever little pull-up handles located on the hips, which makes it much easier for children to put their own pants back on once they’ve done their business. Great for encouraging independence.
The shape and designs are definitely aimed at older ages than our other choices, which appealed to children who didn’t want to feel at all like a baby. Overall, these offered the least protection against wetness but having an excellent option available for bigger kids who just need some reassurance is what swung it for us.