56 answers

How Often Do You Bath Your Kids?

I know this question has been asked before, but I like to get fresh opinions. I am a full time working mom of two under 2 and my husband is working at least 2 nights a week. I personally shower at about every other day, unless I run and then I have to shower.

My kids are another story. I dont know how often people bath and how some people find time to do it every single night! Where in the world do you find the time?!

What can I do next?

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Every night with very few exceptions. I don't want any of my kids to be known as the "smelly kid" at school! Their dad and I both usually shower twice a day, so bathing daily is just habit for us- it doesn't really take that long.

2 moms found this helpful

My kids are 2.5 and 5 so usually 2-3 baths a week. More if they get dirty, the toddler wants to comb her hair with a fork at dinner, etc. Occasionally only 1 bath in a week for my older one (his hair looks good for longer) especially in the dead of winter when I don't want to be cold at night.

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I work FT too, and my almost 4 year old gets a bath every night. It's just part of the routine, after dinner and before bed. I don't always wash her hair though, that usually gets done every 3 days, she has nice dry hair that only looks better the longer it goes without washing, lol.. but her bath routine is 10-15 minutes, I wash her quick and then she plays while I do dishes. Her bathroom is right next to the kitchen, so I feel as if I'm right there with her, yet I get to clean up the dishes from dinner too, win-win :)

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Daily. I also worked full time, with a husband who worked 12-14 hours a day. I found the time because it's important! No one wants to be around a smelly child (or adult, for that matter).

I've taught secondary school (7-12) for the last 19 years. Even in jr. high and high school, I STILL have kids who don't understand the value of a daily shower and we all suffer. With classes at 30+ students, I can't get the ventilation system to move air fast enough to compensate for a kid who thinks bathing every other day is ok. It's worse if it's a girl on her menses. Sadly, air freshener is disallowed because kids are sensitive to it. Thank goodness my classroom is right next to a door leading to the outside. When kids are particularly rank, I can open my classroom door and the door to the outside and hope for the best.

I once had to have the "shower and soap daily" talk with a bunch of 7th graders. One boy, bless his heart, raised his hand and said, "Mrs. F, I thought baths were what you took on Saturday night before church on Sunday! Do I really need to take one DAILY?!?!?!" Oh, my...

Last year, I had two students--a junior and a freshman--who were very smelly. The junior took pride in his awful smell. He's not very well liked to begin with and this compounded an already tense situation. He wore his smell like a badge of honor, goodness knows why. The girl...well, I don't think her parents ever shared the joys of daily bathing or deodorant. It was a sad day in class when this youngster choose to wear tank tops.

I guess the bottom line is we find time and means for the important things. IMHO, a daily bath is one of those important things.

4 moms found this helpful

When my kids were young, they didn't get bathed every night... it depended on what all they did that day, and whether or not they were actually "dirty".

Adults bathe/shower more frequently because the bacteria on their skin, as they reach puberty, produce more odor. Children really don't need to be bathed that frequently.... it can dry their skin. (Body odor is actually caused by the bacteria feeding on the sweat.) Here's an interesting article about the bacteria/sweat interaction....

http://www.askmen.com/sports/health/43_mens_health.html

As they go through puberty, you may want to encourage daily showers/baths. It is amazing how stinky middle school students can get, just in daily activities...not including sports or PE!

2 moms found this helpful

My kids are 2.5 and 5 so usually 2-3 baths a week. More if they get dirty, the toddler wants to comb her hair with a fork at dinner, etc. Occasionally only 1 bath in a week for my older one (his hair looks good for longer) especially in the dead of winter when I don't want to be cold at night.

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Every day.
Bath time was part of our bedtime routine.
After being at daycare/school all day it was great to wash away germs/muck to be nice and clean for story time/bedtime.

2 moms found this helpful

You should not bath your children every night, it's really bad for their skin. When my kids were that young, about every 3 days. Of course, it would also depend upon what their day was like and how dirty they got. Or in the summer if it was a really hot, sticky day they would either get a quick bath or a good wipe down.

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Every night with very few exceptions. I don't want any of my kids to be known as the "smelly kid" at school! Their dad and I both usually shower twice a day, so bathing daily is just habit for us- it doesn't really take that long.

2 moms found this helpful

I work FT too, and my almost 4 year old gets a bath every night. It's just part of the routine, after dinner and before bed. I don't always wash her hair though, that usually gets done every 3 days, she has nice dry hair that only looks better the longer it goes without washing, lol.. but her bath routine is 10-15 minutes, I wash her quick and then she plays while I do dishes. Her bathroom is right next to the kitchen, so I feel as if I'm right there with her, yet I get to clean up the dishes from dinner too, win-win :)

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My daughter is 4 and for us right now, it's Sunday night and Wednesday night. She has preschool Mon - Thurs, so the Sunday night bath is for before starting the school week Monday. Then Wed night she has a pee-wee soccer class that gets her pretty hot and sweaty, and by that time she is due for a bath anyway, so that's her Wed night bath. She did get them sometimes more often during the summer because she was playing outside and swimming more and getting dirty. She likes to play in the tub a long time - I swear she would stay in there for hours if I let her. Can't imagine going through that every night!

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when mine were that age it was about once a week or when they were dirty if it was before that .

1 mom found this helpful

I shower every morning or I don't feel right, and my hair would be a disaster because it's very unruly. Doesn't look well slept on, and I can't brush it.

HOWEVER, my six year old gets maybe 2-3 showers a week (more in the summer if she's outside playing, only 2 in the winter because of eczema) and my 17 month old gets maybe 4-5 a week because she's currently loving smearing food into her hair.

1 mom found this helpful

I have a 5 year old boy in kindergarten so during the week he has to bathe everynight otherwise he smells! On sat/sun night depending on what we do he may not bathe. I also have to take a shower every day even 2 times because I dont like feeling dirty. And I'm pregnant and just find it relaxing. I think the biggest reason I make sure my son takes a bath everynight is I grew up with 4 older brothers and Ewwww is all I have to say about that!

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I do NOT bathe them (the two older ones shower on their own) every night... unless they are particularly dirty. It is usually every other day, or every two days. I find that every day there ISN'T time, but mostly I don't find it necessary to dry out their skin with all the soap when they aren't even dirty. THEY DON'T GET SMELLY AT ALL... and they all have curly hair, so over-shampooing would be bad for their hair anyways.

ME? I have EXTRA OILY skin. I have to take a shower everyday. My girls have normal to dry skin.

1 mom found this helpful

Every 3 days - if we bathe him more often he gets horribly dry red skin. And of course if he is particularly dirty. He is now 5-1/2 - same frequency since he was born. I have no idea where people find the time.

1 mom found this helpful

Unless my children are sick or stay inside the house all day on a cold, rainy day, they get a bath and get their hair washed every day. Going to school or daycare means they get dirty and need a bath. This just has to be part of your routine like eating dinner. I, also, shower ever day.

1 mom found this helpful

Probably about 2x/wk, unless they needed it sooner (i.e. playing in the dirt, food on the hair, etc). I don't think it is good for their skin to do it much more often than that.

1 mom found this helpful

It's part of the bedtime and wakeup routine. (Kiddo's been showering in the morning and bathing at night since he was a toddler, and bathing every night since birth). I've worked FT, PT, been a student, a WAHM, and a pure SAHM. Routine in the morning and at night is the same.

We're an *active* family. You know how you said you "have to" after you run? That's every day for us, multiple times a day, and goes triple for my son. In fact, I'll sometimes have to hose him off midday. Especially when he was in awayschool for preschool & K... because he'd come home absolutely filthy. But even now... if he's been roughhousing with the dog and is half covered in mud and bits of dog fur and twigs... I don't let him stay that way all day tracking it all over the house. If we spend the morning hiking, we shower when we get home. If he's just done a few hours of ANY sweaty activity (much less sweaty and dirty), it's shower time.

My attitude is that it's FUN getting dirty. I in no way try to prevent rugby, rolling down hills, sliding on knees, wrestling, castle building, running, skating, sports... But while getting dirty is fun; Life's Messy. Clean it up.

The only time he doesn't get bathed twice a day is in the summer... if he's just spent 6 hours decontaming in a chlorinated pool... no shower needed. If that 6 hours was in a river or ocean or lake, though, it's into the shower before he's dry.

It's just different lifestyles. I'm sure you have time for things I could never or rarely squish in the time for!

((It's only bad for kids who have DRY skin, or skin problems. That's not us.))

1 mom found this helpful

We are very lucky. We have 5 full bathrooms, our typical rule is if they have had a sport practice or game, we have a formal function the next day, or if it has been 2 nights sense the last bath. That is with our children now. When they were younger normally ever two or three days. I am a dance teacher, so I need to shower just about everyday.

1 mom found this helpful

I bathed mine every night as well. Now she showers every morning before going to school.

Every single morning. My little lady gets red if I don't plus I love how she smells (at 4.5 I still lotion and baby powder her). My teen showers every morning too.

I never let the kids go more than every other day. It depends on what we did that day and how mucky they got though. I shower every day. You know it's been a horrible day if I don't get a shower! I shower during the day, I'm a SAHM. I will take my youngest in with me if need be or wait until nap time. When my boys were younger and began fighting naps I would put them both in the shower with me. I'd give them bath crayons and get us all cleaned at once and get it over with. I bring my daughter in with me now and do the same thing. By bringing them in with me I could get them cleaned pretty much every day.

We do every other day. After I gave birth in the hospital, we were given a travel sized Johnson's wash with instructions for every other day. So, that's what we go by. It's worked out pretty well and occasionally it gets stretched longer if we've had a busy day/weekend/trip, etc.

ETA: My kids will be 4 in Nov.

Bath time varies for my 4 year old. She has one a few times a week. And I won't hestiatate to give her an extra one during the week if she needs it of course. She has baths more frequently in the summer months as she's outside more often and sweats. In the winter, we cut out one bath or so a week just because she will get very dry skin. Even in the summer, too many baths equal very dry skin. That issue had definitely gotten better as she's gotten older, so I'm confident that by the time she's a little older, the daily bath/shower will be okay. I personally have to shower each day unless I'm bumming around the house on a Sat with no one to see or I'm sick. I think what you do is probably fine unless your kids are filthy before you bathe them. But I'm sure they're okay :)

My son gets a bath or shower EVERY night. That 10-15 minutes of time is a LOT better than having a sick kid.

Lord knows what he's bringing home from school. He also takes off his school clothes after he gets home. I much rather do more wash than clean up puke anyday.

The only time he doesn't get a bath at night is if he had swim lessons. He takes a shower after so I don't bother again later that night.

My son gets a bath/shower when he dirty/sticky/stinky OR when he's home and awake and I'm taking one. (I'm a single mom and it's MUCH safer to stick him in the shower with me than wonder what he's destroying while I take a shower!)

they bathe everynight....first goe the two year old girl who is usually covered with markers, food and whatever else she finds then shes in bed at 7 and the boy (7) showers because hes a very busy boy lol....on the offchance they're not completely grubby at night i may skip it.....but they are very routine oriented....you eat, shower, brush your hair and teeth, watch your tv then go to bed for 830

My kids shower each day in the morning before school. Nice and fresh before heading out to school for the day. It gets them clean and also helps wake them up.

Good lucy and best wishes!!

I shower every other night unless I work out and really need it more often. I usually bathe my kids about three times a week unless they really need it more, but honestly only make sure they bathe Saturday night so they don't seem gross at church. :)

Kids don't need baths often, only a few times a week. I sometimes clean the bathroom a bit when they're in the tub so it doesn't really take much time. My husband and I also work full-time (opposite schedules) so this is part of my evening routine with the kids a few nights a week. I just let them play a bit and if they're happy and I don't feel like cleaning I just sit in there with a book.

My daughter who is four gets a bath every night!! She's in school & we are always at the park, zoo!! Every adult & every child should be bathing every day in my opinion.

i have a six year old,he gets a bath every morning before school.... wakes him up and also i am sure it makes him feel alot better. i know i feel better if i take one daily,they need to feel the same.

My kids only sleep well when I bathe them. It is part of their night time routine and goes a LONG way in soothing them. I bathe them every night (mine are 5, 2, & 6 mos -the baby gets bathed every other day for now, but when he starts to crawl it'll become daily.) It is not a big, elaborate thing for us--about 15 min start to finish--I bathe them together.

Every night. =) 4 of mine bathe themselves and it only takes 5 minutes to bathe my 17 month old. When my older ones were little, I'd bathe them together. It really doesn't take that long. HTH =)

Every night before bed. My 9yr old has eczema and psoriasis and a nightly shower is required to keep this skin clean and slough off any scales or dry skin.
My little two get nightly baths too. I feel that I take the luxury of a shower or bath daily, they should get that too. Kids get stinky butts just like adults. LOL!

Every night, but remember it is hot and dusty here 90% of the time. When our daughter was in elementary school they ran track everyday, so she would sweat every day of school.. As she got older, she refused any possibility of BO so she wanted to bathe every day..

We also used to do "races" with bath. We would see who could bathe her the quickest.. Then the next night the other would try to beat the time.. The rule was hair had to be washed, and all body parts cleaned.. No cheating. She used to laugh and laugh and of course we loved getting in and out as fast as possible.

I bathe my kids everyday. And as an adult, I bathe everyday, as well. I am a work at home mom, right now, but I used to work outside of the home, at a daycare. I assume your kids go to a daycare. I can assure you that your kids, going to a daycare, need daily bathing too. They play in the sandbox, they play in paint, they play in the dirt, they get around other kids who come to day care sick. They just get good and messy. You really should bathe them every day. And as their parent, they should be able to follow YOUR lead, bathing every day. It is your job to set in place good hygeine habits, like bathing everyday, brushing their teeth after every meal, and brushing their hair.

she gets a bath about ever other day. The other days we wash up at the sink.

I bathe my kids every other day unless they have gotten into something gross or lathered up with sunscreen.

My oldest (10) takes one every morning and after soccer practice my youngest (4) takes one after soccer practice, the mornings he has school (only 2 days a week), and whenever I feel he needs one. He has eczema and it gets much worse when he bathes everyday especially in the winter during the winter the most he gets is every other day.

my older son bathed every other day (at the most) until he was school age...unless he'd been particularly active. This was based on the dr's recommendations. & his "take" on it was that it was healthier for kids to go without daily bathing. He also told me not to use powders on him...at all.

my younger son has super-sensitive skin. Up until toddler years, we could only bathe once a week or so. From toddler to school age, we worked hard at preventing allergic reactions while still maintaining cleanliness. Even then, a rash was usually present somewhere. Very seldom were we able to bathe more than twice a week. Oh, & there wasn't a bathroom cleaner out there that we could let him come in contact with.....every single surface had to be rinsed before he could touch it. Totally sucked! We even had to rinse down the shower/tub after our turns....because our bathing supplies would break him out! aaaargh....

Once he hit school, things eased off. Chlorine pools were a nightmare, tho'. He could use them only minimally...but lakes/rivers didn't bother him! He's a teen now....& still occasionally breaks out. So far, acne has been minimal....so we'll see what's next!

I try to either bathe/shower daily....but as I'm aging, my hair will not take daily shampoos. I rotate shampooing with conditioning, & it makes all the difference!

As for fitting it into your schedule, life does get easier as the kids get older!

It varies -- my 10 yo is beginning to get to the point where he needs to bathe more often. He generally alternates between a quick rinse-off and full showers, but he just started doing that. I suspect that it will stay that way because he seems to have inherited my extremely dry skin. If I shower with soap every day, my skin gets so dry it feels like paper, so a lot of the time I just use water and only soap the parts that need it unless I've done something that has gotten me extremely sweaty.

My 6 year old and 2 year old probably bathe 2-3 times a week, more if they do something that gets them particularly dirty or if we're doing something that I want them to be shined up for.

Every night before bed, in the summer. When the weather turns cold, every other night. In the winter, bathing really does a number on my boys skin - even with moisturizer, so unless they're really dirty we skip a night.

You know those parents who do not bathe their kids every day are use to their smell and do not realize they are subjecting the smell to everyone else. Mine takes a shower every night before she goes to bed. When she was little she took a bath. If we had time for both of us to take showers in the morning I'd move her to mornings. But I need to get ready for work and we have only the one shower so it has to be.

As soon as I get home with my kid from the preschool, we go straight to the bath tub and he gets a nice warm bath (wash hair only once a week though) and then a moisturizer. I just cannot stand the idea of playing and eating around the house with all that dirt and grime from the whole day at preschool! I have been lucky with a close job and a nearby preschool. If I had to commute longer than half an hour each way, may be I would have skipped doing it once in a while!

In the summer and when playing outside, every day. Come winter, when they really need it, or on Wed and Sundays. My kids are both under 4.

My hubby does it, right after dinner. On Fridays they get a giant bubble bath.

If it makes you feel any better, I'm a SAHM with one child (2 years, 4 months) and I still only bathe her 2-3 times a week. I've never once noticed her being smelly or looking dirty.

With all respect to the hygenically motivated out there, I really don't think daily baths are necessary at this age, unless the child has been rolling around in dirt or smeared butter in her hair. In that case, I'll hustle her off to the bathtub as fast as anyone!

I think daily bathing is particularly unnecessary in the winter, when skin is more prone to becoming dry or itchy.

I have a 15 month old and from the time he was 10 days old I give him a bath twice a day and always moisturize afterward with a good moisturizer like cetafil and he has never had any dry skin issues.

When my son was younger, I probably didn't bathe him every night. Now , at 7 , especially during the weekdays he showers every night. He may miss a friday night or saturday night one, but during the week definetly.

We bathe them 5 or so times a week and if something needs to give we only wash hair 2 x week.

We hose him off with the shower head every night, and actually scrub him/wash his hair once a week (or twice if needed for some reason)
It's part of the routine and he goes through periods of time where there is always dirt, food, marker, glitter and so on to deal with!

Every night after dinner or before it depends on if we have an event to attend after school.But for the most part since bedtime is no later than 8:15 on school days I like to have all 3 showered by 7:30.I keep to a schedule no need to write it down for us we all know mommy's time schedule.We practice hygeine habits this goes with brushing teeth,combing hair,clipping nails

my kids bath every other night, unless we did something very dirty that day

I'm a SAHM, so I definitely have more time than you do when it comes to stuff like bathing my kids. My hat goes off to you for working full time and contributing to the househould. I could not imagine working full time, raising kids, and running a household. It gives me a panic attack just thinking about it. My older son has to bathe daily because he sweats pretty bad. Any little activity makes him sweaty. My little guy who is 2 loves to bathe, so it's usually daily for him unless we get too busy.

We mostly base it off of what they've done that day. If they've gone out somewhere (store, dr's office, played w/friends) they get a bath. Or if they've played outside, they get a bath. If they haven't done those things, they don't need a bath, but sometimes we'll still give it.

We've made it sort of a part of the night time routine. It really doesn't take a long time to bathe them. We'll bathe all four in about 15 minutes if we're short on time. That does mean there's no time for playing, but they can always play in the bath during the day, if they want.

Your kids are little. I don't think they need to be washed every day:-) As they get older, I find it's more important. Unless they are in daycare, then you might find it a good idea to bathe them everyday.

every other night.....unless they are dirty, then every night that happens. But if they arent dirty then i skip days. This is the rule for myself also.

In an average week they will miss 2 baths. Because we usually do outdoor activities.

I grew up in a family where we had to be clean and in PJ's before daddy gets home from work.. So I bath my son every day just before bed. It relaxes him, gives him time to wind down and get sleepy. Then he knows the day is done and it is time for bed.

When he was a nb I struggled with this same question. Seeing as the belly button has not healed when they are still new.. and being a first time mommy and no help whatsoever, no mom to show me, no close friend whom I could turn to... yeah.. my son got the sponge down every 3rd day or so.. or whenever it was needed (after nappy changes, when things got a bit... eew!)

In the winter I have heard people don't take as many baths/showers, I guess I can understand, but sheesh I don't thing going to bed with filthy bottoms and feet are sanitary. I try to have our whole house be done with bath before bed every night.

Updated

I grew up in a family where we had to be clean and in PJ's before daddy gets home from work.. So I bath my son every day just before bed. It relaxes him, gives him time to wind down and get sleepy. Then he knows the day is done and it is time for bed.

When he was a nb I struggled with this same question. Seeing as the belly button has not healed when they are still new.. and being a first time mommy and no help whatsoever, no mom to show me, no close friend whom I could turn to... yeah.. my son got the sponge down every 3rd day or so.. or whenever it was needed (after nappy changes, when things got a bit... eew!)

In the winter I have heard people don't take as many baths/showers, I guess I can understand, but sheesh I don't thing going to bed with filthy bottoms and feet are sanitary. I try to have our whole house be done with bath before bed every night.

My kids are 11 and 5 and half. The older one takes a shower every night, and I bathe the little one every night also. In Summer they sweat and get dirty more often and there are days when they have to bathe or take a shower twice a day. Actually, kids smell if they do not take a quick shower or bath even if they're little ones. When I know that I will be busy at bedtime, I bathe the little one earlier. We, my husband and myself take a shower every single morning or more during Summer or after exercising.

When my daughter was that age I would give her a bath every other day, sometimes every two if we got busy. (Unless she was at the playground, swimming etc.) She did not go to daycare or preschool. If she seemed sweaty or dirty she would get one more often. Babies and toddlers don't get stinky like adults. I would wipe her face, feet and arm pits with a washcloth in between baths. Now that my daughter is in school she gets a bath/shower every night. She comes home from school sweaty and dirty from playing in the playground.

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