Answered: How Many Baby Bath Towels Do I Need?

Answered: How Many Baby Bath Towels Do I Need?

Shopping for babies is exciting, but it can also be overwhelming. When considering what special baby goods to buy, a common question among parents-to-be is "How many baby bath towels do I need?" The quick answer would be three to four bath towels—an amount that would allow you to have a couple ready to go at all times, even when the others are being laundered. However, the number needed depends on how often you bathe your baby, how often you do laundry, and several other factors. 

For adults, bathing is all about cleanliness. But for babies it serves many developmental needs. Your baby's bath time provides cognitive and emotional benefits like sensory development and a sense of structure. They are also necessary when messes occur—life with a newborn is unpredictable, and you’ll want a clean towel every time you bathe your little one. Before planning your baby registry or shopping for your baby, consider the connections you can make with your baby during bath time and the many benefits that bath towels for babies offer. 

So, How Many Baby Bath Towels Do I Need? 

It’s hard to know exactly how many baby bath towels you’ll need before your baby arrives, but learning more about interactive play during infant bath time and the many benefits of baby bath towels can help you get a good estimate. Baby towels and washcloths are essential to keeping your baby clean and healthy. When you consider this, along with how often you're likely to bathe your baby and your laundry frequency, you can get a better idea about the number of towels you'll use. 

The Value of Bath Time During Infant Development

During the first few months of life, babies don't have many ways to get dirty. A quick wipe of the chin after bottle feeding, and frequent, proper diaper changes will keep your little one fresh and clean. The American Academy of Pediatrics notes that three baths per week are often sufficient to keep a newborn clean. However, beyond cleanliness, there are some other advantages to baby bath time:

  • A bath can be soothing when your baby is distraught—parents quickly learn when their infant's cries mean they're hungry or need to be changed. Yet, babies sometimes seem inconsolable without an obvious reason. A warm bath can be a welcome distraction, soothe stress, and relieve colic symptoms.
  • Bath time provides distraction-free time with parents—there are many times you'll have to divide your time between your infant and the distractions of your life, but bath time calls for your undivided attention. While you're keeping your little one safe in the bath, you can bond through play, songs and conversations.

Related: What Are the Best Hooded Baby Towels?

  • Baths can help you develop a routine—life with a brand new family member can be a little hectic at first. When you integrate bath time into your day, your baby will learn to anticipate what comes next. Providing babies with structure helps them feel secure.
  • Bath time presents unique playtime opportunities—your baby is always growing and learning. A bath is a stimulating experience that engages all the senses. Using special toys to make baths more fun is common. Hooded towels and printed washcloths can become special characters that your child interacts with during and after bathtime. 

Keeping Your Baby Safe from Germs

Laundry is an unrelenting fact of life, and you want to keep those adorable plush towels clean and looking their best. Yet, once you wipe your clean baby dry, it’s easy to think that the towel doesn't look dirty at all. 

Unfortunately, this doesn't offer you a reprieve from laundry duties. Even when towels appear clean, they can harbor germs and bacteria. The damp, warm, and absorbent properties of towels make them the perfect environment for bacteria growth. As a result, experts recommend washing all towels after two days of use. Since infants don't have fully developed immune systems, you may prefer to wash them after each use instead. 

How Baby Bath Towels Are Different from Your Own

As a new parent, you may be wondering if special baby towels are even necessary. You already have plenty of thick, soft towels you could use for your baby's bath routine. Technically, you could get by without baby bath towels, but you probably won't want to. Babies are small and fragile. Their skin is delicate and far more sensitive than your own. They also lose heat rapidly, nearly 4 times faster than an adult, making them susceptible to getting chilly after a bath.  

Related: A Quick Shopping Guide for Baby Towel Wraps

Baby bath towels have the following properties that make them ideal for infants.

  • Extra soft materials—baby towels are often made of cotton, linen, microfiber, or bamboo which are extra soft against a baby's delicate skin.
  • A convenient hood—hooded towels have a small hood on a corner or side of the towel, making it easy to quickly wrap a little one after a bath. The hood size is also optimal for rapidly absorbing moisture from a baby's head and hair. These features are ideal for keeping an infant's body temperature regulated after a bath. 
  • Optimal sizing—when you wrap a tiny baby in a big bath towel, things can quickly get awkward. They don't fit a baby's body well and can make it difficult to hold onto a squirming infant. Baby bath towels are the optimal size to swaddle your baby and keep them warm. 
  • Easy washability—let's face it, you can easily wash 3 baby towels in the space it takes to wash one full-size bath towel. Using baby towels can cut down on laundry and allow you to have more clean towels available at once. 

Different Uses for Baby Bath Towels

As an expectant parent, you've undoubtedly seen countless pictures of adorable babies swaddled in hooded bath towels. Yet, there are many ways baby bath towels can make your life more convenient. Here are just a few ways you may choose to use bath towels beyond the typical drying-off period: 

Furniture protection

When you're drying, dressing, or changing your little one, a baby towel beneath him or her can make life much easier. Plush baby towels can add softness to a table or changing station or protect couches, chairs, and beds from unexpected accidents. 


Hospital nurses and grandparents can make swaddling a newborn look easy. Yet, forming a receiving blanket into that ideal baby burrito shape can be a challenge. When you have a fussy, squirming baby, a hooded towel can make swaddling much easier. 


Character towels make bath time so fun that your growing baby may not want to let it go after getting dried and dressed. As babies grow into toddlers, towels can become cherished toys that bring a sense of security.

Cover up

Little ones can enjoy a day at the lake, pool, or beach just as much as their older siblings. A hooded towel makes a great cover-up for babies and toddlers up to two years old before and after entering the water.

Adding It Up

Now that you know all the reasons baby bath towels are a great addition to your collection of baby gear, you're finally ready to answer the all-important question: How many baby bath towels do I need?

If you give your baby a bath three times a week and do laundry once a week, it's probably a good idea to get four. If you do laundry daily, you might get away with two. Yet, neither of these options considers the other uses for baby bath towels. It never hurts to have one more baby bath towel than you need on hand. If you make your baby's bath part of your daily routine, five towels are probably plenty—as long as you launder them frequently.

How many towels you'll use ultimately depends on the routine you become accustomed to. If you end up with more baby bath towels than you can use, they will make great gifts for other expectant parents. 

Other Bathtime Essentials

Now we have answered the question of how many baby bath towels do I need, we can take a look at the other essentials. Soft and cozy towels are just one of the many elements of a successful and enjoyable infant bath. You'll need a variety of other items on hand to prepare for the many baby bath times in your future. Add these items to your baby registry along with your baby bath towel count.

  • Infant bathtub—a baby bathtub cradles your baby, prevents slippage, and has a contoured headrest to keep the baby's head above water. Many even include a digital thermometer that helps you set your water to the right temperature.
  • Baby washcloths—like baby towels, baby washcloths are softer and smaller than the ones you use for yourself. They are the perfect size for washing your little one and the optimal texture for infant skin.
  • Baby shampoo and body wash—designed to be gentle on the delicate hair, skin, and eyes of infants, baby shampoo and body wash gently cleans your baby.
  • Baby lotion and baby oil—baby lotion free of dyes and perfumes is essential to help ward off issues like dry skin and eczema. Baby oil locks in moisture to take care of chronic dry skin and some types of rashes. It's also the go-to cure for removing cradle-cap when it's softened from the bath.
  • Bath kneeler—this one is for the parents, but it can make bathtime much more pleasant. A bath kneeler is a cushioned mat for you to kneel on comfortably while interacting with the baby in the tub.

Make Bath Time Special with Baby Towels from Elegant Baby

The real goal of baby bathtime is to make it comfortable, safe, and enjoyable. Baby bath towels can be used in a variety of ways to make baths comfortable and fun while regulating an infant's temperature after getting out of the water. 

At Elegant Baby, we've designed all of our baby bath towels and exclusive baby goods and apparel around the unique needs of infants under the age of 24 months. They're made of plush and absorbent cotton velour terry and feature adorable animal faces sure to delight your little one. They can even be personalized to add a special touch. Browse our collection of luxury baby towels today to choose a towel that will earn a special place in your bath time routine or make the perfect gift for parents-to-be.
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