Inside: Easy tips to create a calming bath time routine to put your baby and toddler to bed in less time each night.
This is a sponsored post in partnership with Baby Magic. All opinions are 100% my own.
Each night we begin the bath time routine in our house with the same goal: get the kids nice and clean in the bath tub and ready for bed.
In theory, it sounds doable. But trying to wind down little children is quite the challenge when they see bath as a time to just splash about and play in the water with favorite toys.
Many nights the plan to get everyone to settle down for bed, can often backfire.
Babies and toddlers in particular, need to start with a structured routine to get them ready to calm down at night in the bath.
How to use bath time to prepare your baby or toddler for bed
Keep a consistent schedule
One thing that should be at the top of your list in a bath time routine plan for children is a consistent schedule to set expectations each night. Babies and toddlers need to learn what a schedule feels like in order to truly adjust to the circadian rhythm they use to regulate sleep-wake cycle. Try to keep the same day and time each week for bath time. If your bathing every other evening, at 6pm for example, that will help your baby know what is coming next.
We like to use the 4 B’s of bedtime our pediatrician introduced: bath, brushing, books and bed to help our kids associate everything the bedtime routine entails.
Choose soothing bath products
One of the easiest ways to start winding baby down for bed during baths is to use products that soothe baby. Bath wash, shampoos and lotions that are baby-safe and gentle on delicate skin are a must. Parents should also look for shampoos and body washes that use lavender, chamomile or aloe scents to relax, and lotions that moisturize without any harsh chemicals added to keep baby’s delicate skin comfortably moisturized all through the night.
Baby Magic, the iconic baby skin care brand of over 65 years, understands how important innovation is. You may remember their original baby scent product line and clean fragrance: gentle, tear-free and hypoallergenic. But the family brand also recently reformulated their products to address concerns about chemical-safety, using wholesome ingredients free of sulfates, mineral oil, dyes, parabens, phthalates, talc and lanolin. So moms and dads can worry a little less about all the things on their list when it comes to their baby’s safety.
We love the array of options within the Baby Magic line including:
- Original Baby Scent (Cleansing Gel, Lotion & Creamy Oil)
- Best for bathing and hydrating little ones with normal to dry skin
- Features Camellia Oil and Marshmallow Root to help moisturize and soothe dry skin while calming any inflammation
- Lavender Lullaby Scent (Calming Wash and Lotion to prepare for bedtime)
- With soothing ingredients like lavender, chamomile and aloe to keep skin hydrated and moisturized to lull baby to sleep
- Best for nighttime cleansing and moisturizing normal to dry skin
- Lavender scents to help calm and relax baby for sweet dreams and shorter bedtime routine
- Sweet Buttercup Scent (2-1 Body Wash and Moisturizing Lotion)
- With Calendula Oil, Coconut Oil and Shea Butter for soothing and comforting
- Best for cleansing and moisturizing dry or sensitive skin
- Hypoallergenic, dermatologist tested and safe for baby’s new, precious skin
Visit BabyMagic.com to learn more about the enhanced formulations and baby care solutions, featuring the brand’s new look and mascot!
Create a calming environment in the bath
Along with choosing calming bath wash, parents can incorporate additional bath time tips to further promote an overall calming experience in the tub and make sure little kids associate it with winding down time, not just splashing about and getting active.
Skip the over-stimulating toys during nighttime baths
Instead of loud, busy water toys, try to choose toys that get your child to relax such as stacking cups to sift and pour water gently back and forth.
Check water level and temperatures
Keep water level low to avoid big messes. And make sure the temperature is luke-warm to warm to create a soothing bath time, as hot water can dry irritated skin and cold water can be a bit abrupt, preventing kids from relaxing.
Stick with simple activities
Have your child blow bubbles, lie on their back and float (with support as needed) or simply swirl the water around in a soothing manner.
Include a bath massage
When washing hair, include a gentle scalp massage to relax the whole mind & body and really get your toddler ready to fall asleep in their bed.
Making simple bath time changes with a consistent schedule, soothing baby care products and a calming wash, can really make a big difference when it comes to settling your kids down at bedtime, and give you a much-needed break at end of a long day with small children.
Remember to check out the line of reformulated baby products from Baby Magic to help get you started
Ana, a mom to three rambunctious little boys, has supported thousands of women throughout their pregnancy and motherhood journey since 2012 as a prenatal and postpartum educator at MommysBundle.com.