Does my baby need a bathtime routine?

Lots of parents ask the question, does my baby need a bath time routine? Read on to find out how a good routine can help with baby bedtime and more.


Bathing your baby

Bathing your baby, especially for the first time, can be a daunting prospect. Not many parents are taught how to do it either, so the whole thing can often become way more stressful than it needs to be. Lots of parents feel anxious about when to do baby’s first bath, how to bath their new baby and how often they should do it too. Relax. We’re here to answer all your questions and to help you establish the perfect baby bathtime routine.

What do I need for bathtime?

Get everything ready before you start. The last thing you need is to have baby in the water and realise you’ve left the towel in the other room! In fact, if you’re wearing your Cuddledry handsfree towel, that’s one less thing you need to worry about! As a general guide, the equipment you need for baby’s first bath includes:

  • Soft towel to wrap them up in
  • Bath thermometer
  • Towel or cushion to kneel on
  • Sort bamboo washcloth or natural sea sponge for washing
  • Baby bath (optional)
  • Clothes and nappy for dressing afterwards
  • Equipment for a feed afterwards

Can I use soap in my baby’s bath?

For the first few weeks, your baby’s delicate skin is extra sensitive, so bubble bath and soaps aren’t needed, Plain water is all you need until your baby is at least 6 weeks old- although so parents wait longer. Read this post for more information on using soap in baby’s bath.

How can I stop my baby crying at bathtime?

If your baby seems to hate bathtime, don’t panic. It’s a new experience and some babies will take a little longer to settle than others. Make sure you follow our guide for making it all a little easier- we share some great tips on what to do if your baby cries at bath time.

Establishing a baby bathtime routine

Having a bathtime routine is an important part of the overall bedtime routine- and we all know how vital that is when it comes to getting baby to sleep! Once you have a good bathtime routine, the rest will be a lot easier to achieve.

Time your baby’s bath right

Timing is key! Don’t attempt to bath your baby when they’re tired or unwell, and wait at least 30 minutes after a feed too. Most babies won’t take kindly to skipping a meal in favour of a dip- so placing bathtime at the end of the day make sense for a lot of families too.

Choose a warm and safe place for baby’s bath

Make sure your bathroom (or whatever room you’re bathing baby in) is warm and baby-safe. Make sure you baby-proof your bathroom- and don’t forget to follow our bath safety guidelines too.

Have everything you need for bathtime ready to use

Get your checklist together and make sure it’s all ready to go when you need it. Some parents swear by a basket or tub dedicated to bathtime so that they can grab it when they need it and its all ready to go.

Will bathtime help my baby sleep?

We humans thrive on routine, and having a good solid bedtime routine helps us to relax and wind down after a busy day. More so for babies, who need a little extra help from us to be able to distinguish between night and day. But will bathtime help baby sleep? Absolutely!

Bathtime as part of the bedtime routine

Lots of families rely on bath time as a vital part of the bedtime routine, and that’s why most babies enjoy their splash at the end of the day. Bathtime is a wonderful way to sign off for the evening.

Bathtime is a sensory experience

Bath time is a wonderful whole body sensory experience for babies. Imagine yourself being totally immersed in a tub of warm water right before bed time- bliss!

Baby massage after bathtime

Baby massage is another great sensory experience for babies, and an amazing way to end bath time in preparation for bed. Read about the benefits of baby massage and how to get started to find out more.


Example of a baby bathtime routine

Looking to establish a good baby bath time routine? Keep it simple- especially when your child is very young. Keep bath time short and sweet, at the same time every time, and try to make it the same each day too. So, a good example routine could be:

  • Feed- then wait at least 30 minutes
  • Play some gentle music to set the mood
  • Undress baby slowly, maintaining eye contact and smiling to reassure
  • Wash baby’s face and nappy area
  • Lower baby into the bath
  • Gently wash baby
  • Lift baby from the water and cuddle them dry
  • Baby massage
  • Feed
  • Bed

Follow the same steps in the same order each day.