Before you get started with potty training, a trip to the store can help ensure you’re prepared. Consider taking your child along with you and make a special trip of it. If possible, leaving siblings behind (with a responsible adult, of course!), so you can dedicate time just to your potty training kid.
And resist the urge to pick up other things on your shopping trip in order to help your child feel this is a special beginning. Focus on getting the potty training supplies on this helpful potty training shopping list:
Potty Training Shopping List
- Pull-Ups® training pants. If your child’s along on the shopping trip, let them pick out their favorite character.
- Potty or potty insert. There are two types of potty training seats. It’s good to experiment with both options to see what works best for your toddler, or you can ask them which they feel more comfortable with.
- Stand-alone potty seats. These seats are really just small chairs with a hole in them. That means they don’t flush, so you’ll have to dump the waste and clean the chair after each use. Some kids prefer potty training on this style seat because it doesn’t require any climbing or flushing. You can also move it between rooms or bring it to a relative’s house if you’re visiting.
- Toilet adapter potty seats. These seats fit over a regular toilet to make the seat smaller, so your child is more comfortable and won’t have to worry about falling into the toilet. If you choose this style, be sure to get a sturdy step stool so your toddler can climb up onto the toilet seat.
- Cottonelle® flushable wipes. These premoistened wipes can feel more comfortable than toilet paper (especially that scratchy stuff they have at public restrooms!) and make thorough clean-up easier for your potty training child too. They are safe for sewer and septic systems, so you can flush them just like toilet paper. Choose a wipes tub on your first shopping trip, and then purchase refill packs of wipes.
- Soap. Auto dispensers are great for little hands. Make it more fun with different colors, scents or foaming soaps, and be sure you know the proper way to wash hands. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends scrubbing for at least 20 seconds, so think about a song you and your potty training child can sing together that lasts long enough like “Happy Birthday” or “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.”
- Books. Your child’s favorite character may be a great potty-training example. You can also consider creating a My Potty Book potty training book with your child. Grab any book with blank pages such as a spiral-bound notebook, and create your child’s story together. You can write down the words — although let your child guide you — and then ask them to draw pictures. Get ideas for how to write the story here.
- Reward chart. Encourage your child to track potty training accomplishments. Many kids love a sticker chart, and some parents even let kids put the stickers they earn right on the potty. Or you can make a big chart (or a book) with stars or other little pictures for your child to color in each time they have a success. Have a toddler who loves dinosaurs, horses, puppies or other animals? Make your chart specific to their interests.
- Toys. A few new and bathroom-only toys may persuade some potty action. Consider making a little potty training treasure chest for your boy or girl out of an empty shoebox. You and your child can decorate it and store little toys in there. Some favorite toys for the bathroom include finger puppets, coloring books, inexpensive musical instruments and small stuffed animals.
- Small rewards. A tiny treat like a mini marshmallow, chocolate candies or jelly beans may be a good incentive for potty success. Give one at a time when your child experiences a positive potty training moment.
Just keep in mind you’ll only want to do this for a short period of time, so your child doesn’t think a sugary snack is the only reason for using the potty. That’s why it’s wise to have other rewards in mind as well like praise or stickers. Or, if you want to go the food route, consider heathier options too like crackers, raisins or pretzels.
- Disinfectant wipes. Accidents are sure to happen on your potty training adventure. Keep disinfecting surface wipes handy for any leftover potty-training surprises, so clean-ups are quick and easy. Just be sure to keep these wipes out of reach of little hands — and don’t mix them up with flushable wipes.
- Underwear. It might be months before your child moves from Pull-Ups® training pants to underwear, but it’s still worth taking a look while you’re at the store. Show your child what big boy or big girl underwear look like, and have them pick out their favorite styles, colors or characters. You can buy them right away and set them aside until your child is ready to wear them. Or plan to pick them up on a future shopping trip.
With that shopping cart loaded up and your toddler feeling the excitement, you’ll be all set to start potty training. Best of luck to you on the journey. It can — and should be — a fun one!