The best baby bathtub is safe, non-toxic, and easy for mom and dad to use. Out of 17 top baby bathtubs, we’ve highlighted our picks for the best 5.
Just here for the quick and dirty? Looking for the best baby bathtub and don’t have a lot of time to waste? We got you! Here are our picks for the 5 best baby bathtubs:
Bath time is a time for relaxation, fun, and one-on-one time with mom and dad. Unfortunately, not all baby bathtubs are made of non-toxic, safe materials.
I’m talking PVC, phthalates, BPA, foam, heavy metals, and formaldehyde. As parents, we want to give our baby the best start in life, and exposing her to toxic or potentially toxic chemicals doesn’t really fit with that whole ethos, if you know what I mean. Just as we use natural organic kids shampoo, non toxic conditioner and detangler, and natural baby lotion, check the water isn’t too hot with a bath thermometer, and generally do our best to keep the bathroom childproofed, so do we try to keep harmful chemicals at bay – both with our bath toys and our tub!
While I don’t pretend I can control everything when it comes to the dangers of everyday life, one thing I can control is the products we bring into our house.
Methodology: How Did We Decide on the Best Baby Bathtub?
Getting rid of the most dangerous types of plastics and foams from our children’s day-to-day lives seems like a worthy goal. And it’s entirely possible with a bit of research.
Because we know not everyone is as research obsessed as we are, we’ve done the research for you. We’ve scoured manufacturers’ websites, online shopping websites and forums, customer reviews, and peer-reviewed, academic studies to find some of the best non-toxic baths for babies on the market today.
Our goal is to offer a few choices for the safest baby bath tub. And by “safest” we mean a baby bathtub that is both harmful-chemical-free and safe in terms of its structure, design, and intended use.
We’ve only picked 5 non-toxic baby bathtubs to include in this list. But we considered a total of 17 baby tubs.
Baby Bath Tubs Considered in Our Research: Stokke Flexi Bath, puj tub, puj flyte, Primo EuroBath, Shnuggle, Original Tummy Tub, Prince Lionheart WashPOD, Skip Hop Moby 3-in-1, Blooming Baby Bath, First Years Sure Comfort Deluxe, FisherPrice Rinse and Grow, Boon Naked Collapsible, Summer Infant Newborn to Toddler Bath Center and Shower, Leachco Safer Bather, Summer Infant Comfort Height, 1st Custom Care Modular Bath, Munchkin Clean Cradle Tub
Our Picks for the Best Non-Toxic Baby Bathtubs
We considered 17 bathtubs for this list, but most fell short in one way or another, especially when compared to those products that came out on top.
The following bathtubs made the list.
Best Overall Baby Bath Tub – Stokke Flexi Bath – A Great Choice for Everyone
Manufacturing: Made in Denmark I Materials: Polypropylene (PP – Plastic #5) and Thermoplastic elastomers (TPE) I Non-Toxic Credentials: Free from heavy metals, phthalates, formaldehyde, BPA, and other harmful substances I Eco Credentials: Stokke creates products that are designed to last a lifetime, rather than disposable products. This means great resale value, and you’ll be able to pass it on or sell it, rather than bin it or send it off to recycling as a “one and done.” I Social Credentials: Member of the Ethical Trading Initiative Norway for ethical business practices.
(Click to Learn More & Read Reviews)
We love Stokke products – they truly are iconic and meant to last a lifetime.
The Flexi bath is a gorgeous European baby bathtub, made from polypropylene and thermoplastic elastomers. It’s free from harmful chemicals.
What’s great about the Flexi Bath is it’s foldable and lightweight, meaning it packs away easily and is easy for mum and dad to lift and use. It also has a built in drain, meaning it’s easy to drain after bath time without a lot of fumbling.
The plug actually doubles as a temperature check, giving you a quick visual guide to whether your bath water is warm, cool, or hot (with warm being the goal). You still need to double check by sticking your hand in the water to test, but it takes a bit of the guesswork out of it. There’s so much to think about when giving baby a bath – this feature means you have one less thing to worry about.
Stokke’s gear is meant to last a lifetime – or even generations. Once your little one is done with this (it’s good until up to 4 years old according to Stokke, although some parents say their kids outgrew it at 2 or earlier), you can store it away for more babies to enjoy (although if you do this, always check product recalls to ensure the bath tub meets current safety regulations).
For newborns and very young babies, you can buy and optional infant seat to put in the bath tub.
Because of the longevity of their products, Stokke argues their products are eco-friendly. Depending on how you define it, you could also consider this to be an eco friendly baby bath tub
Best Infant to Toddler Bath – PRIMO Baby EuroBath – The Only Baby Bath You’ll Need
(Click to Learn More & Read Reviews)
The EuroBath was really designed with safety in mind, with a shape that means your baby can’t slip under the water. This was my biggest fear when we started bathing our daughter, and I imagine I’m not alone on that!
This bathtub is big – while that doesn’t work great if you live in a small space, it does mean you can use it from day 1 (in a 0 to 6 months reclining position) all the way through to toddlerhood – until you’re baby’s 2 or so (in a sitting up position).
Best Sink Bath – puj tub – Perfect for C-Section Mammas, a Controlled Sink Bath Experience, & Small Space Living
Soft, foldable sink baby bath tub suitable for newborns through 6 months.
Manufacturing: Designed in Vancouver, WA, and Manufactured in Taiwan I Materials: Formamide-free EVA foam I Parent Run: Founded by Ben and Katie Richardson, a husband and wife design team with four kids I Non-Toxic Credentials: BPA and PVC Free (from the company website) / BPA Free, Phthalate Free, Latex Free, Lead Free, no flame retardant chemical additives (from Amazon)
(Click to Learn More & Read Reviews)
Puj actually started as a bathtub company, when founders Ben and Katie were giving their second-born a bath.
If you’ve ever struggled giving an infant a bath, you’ve probably come to a similar conclusion that Ben and Katie did: there had to be a better way.
As designers, they set out to come up with a better solution: a flat, foam “baby bathtub” that fits into and conforms to any sink. When it’s not in use, it hangs or lays flat, which is great if you live in a small space or have limited storage (or just don’t want an ugly baby bathtub taking up a massive amount of space).
The puj tub is BPA and PVC free – we love this! We wish they provided a bit more information about the foam used in the tub though. Some foam can be quite safe; other foam can be a toxic nightmare. We’d feel better if the company provided more information online, or opted for an independent certification, like Greenguard Gold.
Best Travel Baby Bath- puj flyte – Perfect for Families On the Go!
If you need a more portable solution, the puj flyte is the company’s travel tub, and meets the same safety standards as their other products. Learn More
Winner for Small Space Tub – Shnuggle Baby Bath Tub – Great for Keeping Baby Warm During Sink Baths
Shnuggle Baby Bath Tub
A compact, seat-style baby tub for use on the floor or in a sink. Suitable form 0 to 12 months.
Manufacturing: Designed in the UK I Materials: Non-toxic polypropylene (Recycling #5) I Parent Run: Yes, started by parents Adam & Sinead I Non-Toxic Credentials: All Shnuggle products are free of BPA, PVC, lead and phthalates. Recyclable: Likely
(Click to Learn More & Read Reviews)
The Shnuggle offers a cross between bucket style baby wash tubs (like the Tummy Tub, which we don’t recommend) and a traditional baby bath.
Using the Shnuggle, your baby still reclines slightly, which seems like a nice and comfy position for them. The “baby bump” built into the floor of the tub helps to keep the baby in position, preventing them from sliding down.
The Shnuggle is a great “small space” tub since it’s so compact. You can put it in the kitchen sink easily, or on the floor.
Compared to the puj tub, we like that the Shnuggle will keep your little one warm in the water. However, it’s also a bulkier to store.
What to Look for When Shopping for a Baby Bath Tub
If you’re just starting out looking for a bathtub for your new baby or toddler, we’ve pulled together a list of things to consider when evaluating the options.
Look for a BPA Free Baby Bath Tub
Bisphenol A (BPA) has been used in polycarbonate plastics since the 1950s or so. Within the last decade, however, scientists have found concerning links between BPA and human health, leading some governments and some companies to take action.
It’s important to purchase a BPA-free bathtub for babies and children. Research has found that fetuses and young children in particular have unique vulnerabilities when it comes to BPA exposure.
Many companies make BPA-free plastics now – you could even say it’s trendy to do so. However, it’s a bit more difficult to find BPA free bathtubs that are also free from other chemicals, including BPA alternatives.
Once you’re sure your tub is free-from, also look for non-toxic bath accessories, like bath toys and a bath spout cover, once you move into a full-size bath!
Beware the BPA Alternatives (BPS, BPF, BPAF, BPZ, BPP, BHPF, …)
Since BPA-free has become de rigueur, many companies have switched to BPA alternatives. Unfortunately, these alternatives may not be any better for our health.
They all have “BP” in their names because they share the same basic chemical structure of a bisphenol. Each new version has only slight differences, as if swapping a blue Lego block for a red one. (source)
Your best bet is to avoid these chemicals as well. Since most companies don’t yet disclose whether they use BPA alternatives, consumers have to figure it out for themselves.
Geneticist Patricia Hunt of the University of Washington has studied these chemicals, and has this advice for consumers:
Steer “clear of plastics with the recycling numbers 3 [polyvinyl chloride], 6 [polystyrene], and 7 [other – usually a mix of plastics], which all contain compounds of concern.” (source)
If you’re concerned about a plastic baby bathtub, ask the company if the bathtub has a recycling number, and what number it is. If it’s number 3, 6, or 7, find another bathtub for your baby!
Choose a PVC & Phthalate Free Baby Bathtub
I’ve combined these two, as they often go hand-in-hand (although phthalates are also found in other, non-PVC products, too).
Some phthalates come along with a range of health concerns, and young babies may be uniquely vulnerable.
Anything made from PVC (aka vinyl, recycling #3) likely has phthalates in it. Pretty much every inflatable baby bath tub we’ve seen is made from PVC – these are best avoided!
Buy an On-Brand Baby Bath Tub to Ensure it’s Lead Free
Lead can be found in some children’s products made of vinyl and plastic. And because young children are quite vulnerable to the effects of lead exposure – including brain and kidney damage – it’s worth double checking that your baby’s tub is lead free.
First, the good news. Because of regulations, you’re unlikely to find lead in major brand baby products.
Now here’s the bad news. Your kids can also get lead exposure from your “normal” adult bathtub. Because the effects of lead exposure can be quite devastating, this is another great reason to use a safe and non-toxic baby bathtub during the first few years of your kids’ lives.
Finally, avoid any “bathtub” that isn’t specifically intended to be used as one (i.e a laundry wash bin). These aren’t subject to the same “intended for a baby” safety regulations that proper baby bathtubs are – best avoided!
Double Check Any Textiles Are Formaldehyde Free
Formaldehyde is sometimes used in antibacterial items, and is found in some textiles. If you’re purchasing a newborn bathtub with a sling, in particular, it’s worth confirming the sling is formaldehyde free.
Make Sure Your Baby Bathtub is Also Flame Retardant Free
Flame retardant chemicals are added to some plastics, and are associated with a number of health concerns. Double check any baby bath tub you’re considering hasn’t had flame retardant chemicals added to it.
Baby Bath Tubs We Don’t Recommend
Not all bath tubs we considered for this article made the list. Some of the tubs just didn’t measure up when compared with the winners. However, there are also some baby baths we don’t recommend.
Bucket or Pod Style Baths Aren’t Recommended
We don’t recommend buying a baby wash tub, in which the baby sits straight up in the water. For one, these tubs make it pretty hard to wash you baby’s baby bottom. From a hygiene perspective, that’s not great news, especially after a diaper blowout.
However, it also seems like a serious drowning risk. According to Consumer Reports:
We … have concerns that it could tip over much too easily, especially when placed on the pedestal. More concerning, it’s not covered by U.S. safety standards that apply to baby bath seats and tubs. Finally, like any household pail, this one can pose a hazard to toddlers if left unattended with even a small amount of water in it. Because they are top heavy, little tykes can topple head first into a bucket and drown, as the Consumer Product Safety Commission often cautions.”
Don’t Use a Baby Bath Tub That’s Meant for the Countertop or Isn’t Super Sturdy
Without exception, placing a baby bathtub on the countertop is a bad idea.
It’s not difficult to imagine the bathtub falling off the counter, or imagine older babies squirming or trying to stand up, and falling.
Similarly, a baby bathtub with a detachable base, which puts your baby at a bit of a height, seems like a bad idea to us.
It’s not hard to see how an accident could happen.
We Don’t Recommend Using a Baby Bath From a Company That’s Not Transparent About the Materials Used (or Those That Use Concerning Materials)
In building this article, we considered a lot of popular and well-reviewed baby bathtubs that just didn’t make the grade because the manufacturers either don’t tell customers what the tubs are made of, or use materials that may come with some concerns, such as polyurethane foam.
Don’t Use a Bath Manufactured Before October 2, 2017
In the United States, the Consumer Product Safety Commission updated infant and baby bath tub safety standards in October 2017. While it’s now illegal to sell baby bath tubs manufactured before that date, if you get a used bath, you may not know when it was manufactured.