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Bathing Twins

Wondering how bathing twins works? Have no fear. We’re here to help.

Bathing your babies is fun and fairly easy, though not quite as easy as it is with singletons. It’s okay…you’re going to do great. You just need a few items for a successful bath, many of which you probably already have lying around the house.

Some books, like The Baby Whisperer, give a very specific technique for exactly how to lower your baby into the bath… ahhnnnd it must be done * just * like * so * … nonsense! As long as the temperature is right (very warm but not burning), just slide them in! No need to over-engineer it.

bathing twins

The big question is: do you need double the gear?The short answer is: No. With newborns, until they are sitting WELL unassisted, you will most likely be doing an assembly line style bath routine. One baby in the tub, the other in the bouncer (or with mom, dad, partner or nanny)… and switch. Newborns are squiggly and slippery, especially when wet, so bathing one at a time is the safer and easier way to go. Plus, the solo-bath allows you to enjoy some one-on-one time with each baby. (A serious bonus for any twin parent!)

Baby Bath Tub

The majority of baby bath tubs are 3-in-1 tubs that serve newborns and up. These are the most economical and work well for the vast majority of the population, though you may opt to switch to the laundry basket technique for your twinnies (below).

Our favorite singleton 3-in-1 tub is the quintessential “blue tub” by The First Years ($19). There is absolutely no reason to spend any more money than thison an infant bathtub, I promise!

The blue tub (and those like it) can be used throughout all stages of infancy: newborns go in the newborn sling (below)…

Three- to six-month-old babies can use it in the reclined position (with newborn sling removed), and “sitters” (6+ months) can use the tub sitting upright (with “hump” removed). This tub does a nice job of “growing” with your babies (although you will probably not use it for more than a year, despite what it says on the box – just sayin’).

The big downside to the blue tub (and those like it) is that it’s harder to fit into your kitchen sink and such; you see, it is MUCH easier to bathe a baby-in-a-tub without having to bend over or kneel down. Thus, you maybe able to cram this into a larger kitchen sink if the geometry is right, but no guarantees.

Countertop and Sink Tubs

There are some smaller tubs that are easier to use on the countertop or in the sink. The most popular is a bucket-style tub, like the Original Tummy Tub (below), but save yourself some money and go with the more affordable Munchkin Sit and Soak.

bathing twins in the Original Tummy Tub

I’ll let you in on a little secret: these are just buckets! Why put a newborn in a bucket? For starters, it feels like the womb again. Babies dig this. Also, some babies prefer to be upright vs. laid back (as they are in the sling of a 3-in-1 tub). If your babies are fussing about being laid back in a sling, I recommend giving one of these tubs a shot. The only downside with buckets is that it’s hard to access and clean your baby’s nether regions, which usually get VERY…. let’s just say they need regular cleanings.

Bathing Twins: DIY Bathing Option

bathing twins in a laundry basket

Though a baby tub, like the Blue Tub or newborn tub, is fairly essential to have when your twins are newborns, as they grow, you can certainly toss the tub and go for some creative DIY options. Many MOMs I know are eager to start bathing their babes together once they are able to sit up on their own. The easiest, safest and most efficient way to do this is with a large laundry basket.

That’s right, you heard me: a laundry basket.

When my twins were about 4-5 months old, our nanny had the ingenious idea of clipping the slings from their Blue Tub to each side of the laundry basket so the babes had a semi-soft and cushioned surface to sit on. She put the laundry basket in the tub, dumped some toys in, sat the babes in the basket together, ran the water, and – voila! The babies had a blast bathing together, and the laundry basket kept them contained and supported so they wouldn’t wobble or fall over. Once they were stable enough (and craved more room to play), we ditched the laundry basket and just used the regular tub.

Towels and Washcloths

bathing twins, Pottery Barn baby towels

The advantage of buying baby towels and washcloths is that they need to be washed more frequently due to (ahem) frequent accidents. Washing little towels and washcloths is simply a matter of taking up less space in your laundry – sort of like the difference between washing twin sheets and king-sized sheets. Also, most baby towels have little hoods, which are nice for toweling off hair and keeping those little heads warm.

I don’t have a strong preference in this department, just get whichever ones make you happy 😉 The one pictured above is from Pottery Barn Kids, it’s an awesome towel (and a great gift!). Clevamama has a cool towel that keeps mom dry, too. Very thoughtful.

Bamboo is an amazing fiber for baby towels. It’s extremely soft and absorbent. Read more about baby towels here.

Soap

You’ll need some baby shampoo to clean out all those cracks and crevices. The quintessential baby shampoo is Johnson’s Baby Wash (now hypoallergenic and paraben-free), which is great because of the “no tears” feature.

One of our favorite all-around baby shampoos is Mustela Foam Shampoo for Newborns. Mustela is very gentle and won’t strip the oils from their soft hair.

bathing twins, Mustela

For something a little crunchier (and if you can afford it!), check out some of the “natural” favorites, such as Earth Mama Angel Baby Shampoo & Body WashCalifornia Baby Super Sensitive Shampoo & Body Wash, and Babyganics Baby Shampoo + Body Wash.

Personally, I would take “no-tears” soaps any day over these natural soaps that can burn baby’s eyes, but that’s just me.

Misc.

It’s nice to have a hand-sprayer type of shower head to wet and rinse baby’s hair and body. If you don’t have a hand sprayer, you can use a simple plastic cup (kinda like the ones you steal from the stadium after a football game).

How Often?

The frequency of bathing babies varies greatly from mom to mom: some do it every day and some do it once a week (yikes). The truth is, babies aren’t exactly rolling around in the dirt or getting sweaty at the gym, so you don’t need to bathe them every day.

That said, they do get kinda gross from daily grime (copious amounts of spit up, errant milk, and the occasional blowout). Also, many moms find it to be a soothing and relaxing end-of-day ritual.

Once your little milk-a-vores start eating solid foods (and are regularly coated with yogurt and carrot puree), you’ll be lucky if you only have to bath them once a day, so enjoy the relative cleanliness while you can. 😉

SO, just to recap, here’s what you’ll need for your twin bath:

  1. Baby tub (just one)
  2. Towels and washcloths (lots)
  3. Soap
  4. A plastic cup (if you don’t have a hand sprayer)
  5. Someone/something to hold one baby while the other is in the bath — or a bouncer

Splish splash!


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