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How to Potty Train

Not sure when to start potty training? Read this useful guide from Huggies© which tells you how to potty train and how to spot the signs your little one is ready

Bringing up a little one is full of new and different stages, with one of the biggest being potty training. If you're wondering exactly how to potty train your toddler, then this essential guide from Huggies© can help you and your toddler get off to a flying start.

The Eight signs of readiness

If your little one is showing three or more of the Huggies PULL-UPS© eight signs of readiness then it's time to get the potty training essentials together and prepare your toddler.

Does your child:

  1. Stay dry for one hour or more at a time, or are they dry after their daytime nap?
  2. Tell you in words or behaviour that wearing a nappy is uncomfortable and needs changing?
  3. Ask to use the potty or the toilet?
  4. Show signs that they're about to have a wee or poo, or poo regularly at the same time each day?
  5. Ask to wear potty training pants or normal underwear?
  6. Understand and follow simple instructions like "Bring me the potty, please"?
  7. Show in behaviour, or use words to let you know they need a wee or a poo?
  8. Put on some of their clothes on their own?

Remember that there's no perfect time to start potty training, but if possible give yourself a clear window of opportunity when you have the time to devote to it, and when no big events, days out or holidays are looming on the horizon.

Making a start with potty training

Plan a suitable day when you will be able to start potty training. On the first morning switch from nappies to training pants, like PULL-UPS© and don't look back!


Here are Huggies© top five tips to get you started:

  1. Encourage your little one to visit the potty at regular intervals throughout the day and give them praise for trying (even if they don't actually do anything)
  2. Rather than asking if they need a wee (as they could say "no") simply say "It's time for the potty" and help your child sit on it
  3. Remember that boys often find it easier to learn to wee while sitting down. This is because they need to feel comfortable when sitting to do a poo
  4. Gently remind your child that the potty is there to be used to make them think about their physical feelings and make the connection
  5. Don't put pressure on them to use the potty and if there's an accident, don't make a big deal about it. Focus on learning and say something like "Oh, you've done a wee - let's get you changed. Next time, you can do it in the potty'

Wave goodbye to nappies

Switching from nappies to potty training pants can help your little one understand that a new routine is being introduced, as well as helping them feel like a "big" boy or girl.

  • Have unique fade-when-wet graphics to teach children the difference between wet and dry.
  • Can easily be pulled up and down to give children independence and control.

There are two different PULL-UPS© options that you might like to try:


Are absorbent enough to protect against little accidents and feature Easy-Open sides for quick checks and changes. They are decorated with fun boy and girl graphics to look and feel just like real underwear

PULL-UPS© Night-Time:

These offer all the benefits of PULL-UPS© but with extra absorbency for a good night's sleep

Huggies Range

It's really important to be consistent, so once you've made the switch to PULL-UPS© and PULL-UPS© Night-Time, it's best not to go back to nappies unless you feel your little one is not yet ready for potty training.

Keep going!

Potty training can be a frustrating time for both you and your toddler, but consistency is crucial, so start as you mean to go on.

They may have a few upsets along the way, but the best thing is to be calm and patient. Your child may sense your frustration and anxieties which can then make it feel like a chore for everyone.
Here are five top tips to help you stay the distance:

Here are five top tips to help you stay the distance:

  1. Get into a routine that includes your child using a potty before they leave the house, before a nap and before leaving nursery or playgroup - remember to give lots of praise when they cooperate
  2. Treat PULL-UPS© as pants and not as a nappy, both during the day and at night.
  3. If you're leaving your child to go to work or because they are going to nursery or school, always visit the toilet with them first, don't just rely on the training pants to keep them dry
  4. If your child goes to nursery or other child care, be sure to coordinate toilet training plans. A consistent approach will be better for your child and ensure everyone is helping in the same way
  5. Keep your little one motivated with little rewards, a progress chart with fun stickers and, of course, plenty of hugs and praise to give them a sense of achievement

Advanced training:

advtraining picture

When they're ready, think about introducing the following:

  1. Give fewer reminders and encourage independence by letting them decide when to use the potty or toilet
  2. Teach boys to wee at the toilet standing up; use a step or box to help them reach the right height. Toilet training balls and stickers may help with their aim
  3. Remind girls to hold up dresses and skirts so they don't hang into the toilet or potty
  4. Emphasise the importance of careful wiping and hand-washing. You will need to supervise these at first
  5. Move on to normal underwear for your child during the day, but continue with PULL-UPS© Night-time pants at night until you feel they are ready to stop wearing them

If you have any concerns when you are potty training, speak to your health visitor.

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