Potty Training Girls

It’s widely assumed that potty training girls is easier than toilet training boys, but that doesn’t mean it’s guaranteed to be a fast or easy process!

When to start potty training a girl

On average, girls tend to be ready to potty train three months earlier than boys; however, there is no ‘best age’ to potty train a girl.

Girls with older siblings might be ready as soon as 18 months, whilst others can take up to four years. The most common time to start potty training a girl is between the ages of two and three.

The most important thing is to wait until she is ready. What ‘ready’ actually means changes from person to person of course but commonly, if you look out for signals, such as telling you when her nappy is wet or taking an interest in when you go to the loo, it may be time to capitalise on that and get started. Avoid toilet training during large life events, such as when moving to a new house, changing nurseries or if a new baby joins the family.

 

How to potty train a girl

You might find the below useful to help you successfully potty train your little girl:

  • A potty: This is handy when training begins as it’s less daunting than the toilet.
  • Training seat: Some girls might be a little fearful of falling in the toilet, so this is useful when they’re ready to progress from the potty.
  • A stool or step: To help her get on the toilet and reach the sink to wash her hands.
  • Training pants: A product like Huggies® Pull-Ups® encourages your toddler out of nappies and nappy pants and into underwear. The fun graphics and stretchy sides mean they feel like underwear, whilst protecting her – and you – from any accidents
  • Training and reward materials: Try using stickers, books, charts or potty training videos for girls to help her learn, motivate her to master potty training and praise her progress.
  • Keep her occupied: Sometimes actually getting them to stay on the potty can be the toughest challenge. Keeping the child entertained to take their mind off the task at hand can work wonders in helping them to go. Try relevant videos and songs that encourage them. Distraction as a technique works particularly well with poo phobia too.

Encourage her to watch and learn

Introduce an open-door bathroom policy at home – when you don’t have guests, of course! Toddlers learn from imitation and encouraging her to watch close family can spark an interest in toilet training, and help teach her the difference between how girls and boys use the toilet.

When she starts showing an interest, use her favourite toys or stuffed animals to demonstrate how to use the potty.

When you start training, don’t wait for her to tell you when she needs to go. Instead, sit her on the potty every hour or so.

Teach her front to back

When toilet training a girl, it’s important you teach her to wipe from front to back to avoid infection – especially if she has a poo. If she struggles to understand, teach her to pat herself dry when having a wee and to call you if she’s had a poo.

Although UTIs aren’t common in kids, they are more likely to affect girls than boys. Look out for signs of an infection, including a sudden or frequent need to go, complaints of an upset stomach, pains when peeing, or if she starts wetting herself again after establishing good bladder control.

Take her underwear shopping

When she’s ready to start using Big Kid underwear, take her shopping so she can choose it herself. Make her feel grown-up and tell her it’s a special trip – just don’t forget to buy a few extra pants to allow for accidents.

Keep training consistent

Before beginning potty training, ensure everyone involved in her childcare is on board, including childminders, grandparents and those at nursery. This ensures she’s taught in the same way and that everyone remains calm and patient – unfortunately, potty training isn’t something mastered overnight.

Consistency is key when training for day and night. It can be confusing to take her out of nappies in the day and put her back in them at night. Huggies® Pull-Ups® for girls are available in day and night options to provide consistency when training.

Further potty training solutions

Here are some helpful tips to potty train girls:

  • Buy multiple potties: Put a potty in the bathroom and others throughout the house in case she suddenly needs to go.
  • Encourage her to personalise her potty: She’ll be proud to use her potty if it’s decorated with stickers, glitter or her name.
  • Summertime training can be less stressful: Summer dresses and skirts are much easier for your little girl to lift, particularly without tights to get in the way. It can also be useful to remove all clothes during your potty training, which is much easier to do when the weather is nice.
  • Use a doll to demonstrate: Try a doll that will drink ‘milk’ and wee, to teach her about toilet training. You can also sit the doll on a potty at the same time, so she feels like she has a potty training friend!
  • Carry a travel potty: This is useful when you’re on the go and can often be folded down and stored underneath your buggy.
  • Make it fun: Keep books or a tablet in the bathroom to entertain her when using the toilet. You could also try adding a drop of blue food colouring to the water – she’ll love watching it go green!

There is no quick way to potty train, however tips, tricks and knowledge from those who have experienced it helps. Whether it’s real-life stories from parents or advice from our potty training experts, we’ve got your back.