Should we bathe our baby every day?

No, once or twice a week is fine!

You do not need to bathe your baby every day or even every other day. Babies’ delicate skin secretes natural oils that keep them soft and serve as a barrier to the world.

Washing around the areas that get dirty (along the neck creases, the mouth, and the bottom) with a warm washcloth each day is sufficient. A full bath can be done as often as you'd like, but once or twice a week is just fine. Once your baby starts eating, the whole game changes, and you'll be bathing more often in an attempt to remove food particles from each little nook and cranny!

Reviewed by Dr. Sara Connolly, April 2019

Comments

  1. We do a daily bath (most of the time) on our 3 month old because it helps him to release gas. Winter time we do our 5 and 7 year olds 3-4xs a week and 6-7 days a week in the summer. Otherwise they get to dry even with lotioning them up. The key is getting “stinky parts” washed up daily with some warm water and a washcloth :).

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  2. i think some parents bathe their child way too much. i gotta copy this article for them lol

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  3. we do every other day unless needed because his skin gets dry

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  4. When I had my first I always just wiped her down. I never knew this!

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  5. This is good info to know… we’ve been doing it every other day, but sometimes, babies smell from formula/breastmilk spit up and lint btwn the toes! HAHA!

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    1. Yes, sometimes a sponge bath just won’t do the trick!

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  6. Great information!

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    1. Thanks Stephanie!

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  7. We do 2 times a week.

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  8. I give the baby 11 month a bath about every two days… Maybe three. My three year old and five year old gets a bath every other… When they start getting out in the world I feel they need it more. Lol

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    1. Agree! Especially in the warmer months when they are outside all the time.

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  9. I am so glad to find an answer to this I would have never known!

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  10. When my son was a newborn we only bathed three times a week, but as a toddler he is just to dirty by the end of the day.

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  11. Great article! Very helpful! I am concerned that I needed to bathe him everyday.

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  12. This is very good information. We always bathed daily.

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  13. My sister thinks I’m crazy for not bathing my 4 month old everyday so I sent her this article! Ill clean his neck where milk gets in the creases but I just don’t see the need to bathe him everyday. I wish I could get away with it like he can. Glad I came across this.

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  14. We do every other day – sometimes every three days! Thanks, Amanda Heck

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  15. Good to know, that way we don´t over bathe our baby if it is not necessary. Not that we wouldn´t want to, but not if it may affect their delicate skin. Water here is too hard on your skin so, the warm water and wash cloth is a great advice, thanks.

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  16. When my daughter was a new born we did every other day but as she got older we had to do it everyday! Kids can be messy!!!

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  17. I never knew about the oils! I wish i had know that!

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  18. Our little one can crawl now and so she’s all over the place and she does get very messy during meals … Plus my wife hates when her toes get stinky haha so we bathe her every other day and always before bed. It definanlty helps her sleep at night

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    1. I laughed out loud when I read your comment! When my five-year-old was a baby, no one believed me that her feet were stinky at the end of the day.

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    1. Completely agree. It’s a personal decision and what feels right for one family may not for another.

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  19. Glad to see this in writing! My little one gets bathed twice a week on average (though once we lost track, but he didn’t seem to mind…). With him napping and sometimes not waking until 5pm, I’m not sure how we’d fit in a bath with a bedtime that is around 7pm!!

    In the summer, I believe a bath by a hose is sufficient. I’m not the only one, right???

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  20. We do every other day, and sometimes every third day. I haven’t included bath in the bedtime routine in case it’s not possible for a bath that night, that way the routine doesn’t get thrown off!

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  21. I also do bath time as part of our nightly routine. She loves it and she knows once she’s all done it’s time for bed. 🙂

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    1. Exactly! My son even asks for a bath when he’s ready to go to bed! He signs “bath” and points toward the stairs. 🙂

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  22. We do a daily bath as part of our son’s bedtime routine. Also, it’s a little bit of Daddy time because bath time is my husband’s job! 🙂 It works for us. I’ve heard that some babies can get flaky, itchy skin from bathing too often, but we haven’t had any problems with a daily bath.

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    1. Now that my girls are two and four we have to bathe every night because they tend to sweat quite a bit now. I don’t necessarily wash hair everyday but usually every other. It is also a part of our night time routine and they look forward to it!

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