This post is sponsored by Kandoo Flushable Wipes, but all content, thoughts and opinions are my own.
Ahh, potty training is such a double edge sword. One part of me absolutely loves it because that means we don’t have to deal with diapers anymore, but on the other hand, potty training requires lots of time, energy and most importantly, patience, to get these little ones trained. Potty training is a huge milestone that varies wildly from child to child. You never really know what you’re getting into.
We were extremely lucky with our oldest because he practically trained himself at 2 1/2 years of age in less than a few days. He made up his mind that he was done with diapers, and we never looked back. With our youngest, it’s been a much different story. While she’s had interest in potty training, it’s been more touch and go and definitely a lot messier. With preschool on the horizon, we are anxiously working on potty training and are slowly making strides to being sans diapers!
I’ve compiled a list of some of the best tips, tricks and hacks to make potty training easier and more successful with the help of a group of amazing been there, done that mamas:
Make Sure They’re Ready
As much as you may want your kid to be potty trained (I totally get it), if they’re not ready you’ll likely be facing an uphill battle.
Have All The Supplies Ready To Go
When you’re ready to embark on the potty training journey, make sure to have everything ready to go! These are just a few of my must-have potty training products:
- Potty or potty seat: Let them pick out which one they want to build some excitement!
- Kandoo Flushable Wipes
- Potty inspired books
- Undies: Let them get excited to pick these out too.
- Paper towels and disinfectant wipes for cleaning up misses and messes
- Hand Soap: We love the fun, colored Kandoo foaming hand soap
- Optional, but well worth it: A carpet cleaner (it’ll get a lot of use beyond potty training too).
We love using the Kandoo Flushable Wipes because it allows them to have a bit more independence when wiping, as well as getting them cleaner. It took us awhile to get our oldest independent when it came to wiping after poo-ing, but these have been a huge help. Plus they clean up to 30% better than toilet paper and can be flushed away for less mess!
Another huge benefit is that Kandoo Flushable Wipes have a brand new, easy-to-open tub with a pop & lock lid that makes it super easy to use for even the most frustrated toddler.
We put one on the back of each potty for easy access (it has a no-slip base to keep it put), and the kiddos simply pop it open and grab a wipe as needed. The wipes pop up one at a time too – no handfuls of wipes and no longer having to worry about your kiddo unrolling half a roll of toilet paper per sitting.
Get Them Used To It
We’ve been pretty open about bathroom use in our home and especially when our kids began to become interested in potty training. Kids learn by seeing and letting them peek into how and when you use the bathroom solidifies potty use in their brain. Having older siblings (or cousins) that kiddos can see and replicate is great for potty training time as most toddlers want to be just like their siblings.
Celebrate like crazy when they do use the potty! Clap, hurray, dance…whatever you do, make a big deal of it! Nothing motivates more than positive reinforcement!
Get A Schedule
Those first few days, a schedule is a must. We were heading to the bathroom pretty regularly (like every 30 minutes) and I asked “do you have to potty?” ALL THE TIME. At young ages, they need a constant reminder at first, but soon you’ll find a natural rhythm.
Allllll The Treats (or Rewards)
Finding a reward system that works for your toddler is a great way to encourage potty use! We loved Skittles for our kiddos and they only got one if they actually went potty, not just sitting (stick to this otherwise you’ll be playing a game all day long). You can do candy, stickers, stars on a chart, or whatever excites your child.
Sh*t Happens & Are Learning Opportunities
There will be accidents. When they happen, acknowledge them and move on. Don’t shame your kiddos because it’s likely that they are already embarrassed.
Give Them Choices
Empower your learning kiddo by giving them choices. Ask them which potty they’d like to use (upstairs or downstairs), let them pick out which potty or undies to buy, etc.
Ditch The Kiddo Potties, Unless…
I’m personally a huge proponent of getting rid of the stand-alone potties and opting for the potty seats that sit on the normal toilet. This allows children to get used to using a “big kid” potty which is super helpful when you travel, much less work to clean and takes up less room. If your toddler doesn’t mind, stick to the seats! 😉 Tip: Get a stool to help them get up and down easily. Aim for one that they can set their legs on while going as it’ll making going #2 easier too.
Let Boys Sit
For little boys, wait to teach them to pee standing up. Let them get the hang of just getting to the potty and using it in time before you even bother with the standing up part. Just make sure they point it down otherwise you might have a mess to clean up.
Pack The Car
The first month or so, keeping a potty in the car is a great idea. In the early stages of potty training, children often can’t hold for too long so having it easily available while on-the-go is a must!
Go All In
My mama friends and I have found that it’s easier to go for it all the way. Instead of opting for in-between diapers, like pull-ups, going bare bottom or with a pair of undies is more successful. Pull-ups are confusing to many children because they feel just like a diaper (and function the same). Undies allow children to feel the wet sensation which helps facilitate using the potty.
Make It Fun
Make potty training as fun as you can to encourage your kiddo! We stock our home and bathroom with fun potty books to pass the time and a dry erase board is great for doodling while using the potty. Adding a little food coloring to the toilet bowl is a fun surprise too.
Leave The House
Don’t be afraid to leave the house (but do pack an extra set of clothes). Getting out is good and some kids love exploring new bathrooms (my kids loved using potties in every store we went in). Tip: Pack some post-it notes in your purse to cover automatic sensors to avoid unneeded flushing that can scare some toddlers.
Don’t Get Your Panties in a Bunch
If it doesn’t work the first time, take a break and try again a few weeks or months later. Potty training is much easier when children are ready so give them some extra time if needed.
For more potty training tips, tricks and hacks, be sure to check out KandooKids.com! They have a HUGE plethora of information and resources for all things potty training!
Do you have any potty training hacks to share? What did you struggle with the most?