One of the most useful elimination communication supplies is a small potty. However, it can be tricky to find a potty or toilet seat reducer that is the right size for your baby to use while practicing elimination communication. This blog posts will present the best elimination communication potties for use at home, while traveling, and during the newborn phase. There is also a section on recommended toilet seat reducers. These recommendations are based upon my personal experience practicing EC with my two children, and responses I received through polling an elimination communication support group.
Considerations when choosing an elimination communication potty:
- Narrow enough for a baby or younger toddler to straddle comfortably;
- Short enough to allow for a squatting position;
- Splash guard (especially for boys);
- No extra bells and whistles (music, characters, etc).
Born Ready has an informative post on choosing a potty for EC, written for the UK audience. She mentions to just buy a small cheap potty at the supermarket. That made me stop and think. Here in Thailand, where I am currently living, I can buy a tiny potty at Tesco Lotus. But in the USA? I can't remember seeing a potty in the grocery store back home. There's a row full of disposable diapers, that much I can remember. But for a potty, I think you'd need to head to Target, Ikea, or Babies-R-Us, if you aren't ordering online from Amazon. Plus, most potties in the USA are designed for three-year-olds, so the challenge is finding a small potty that fits a baby comfortably.
Continue reading to see comparison photos of small potties, or you can skip ahead to the best elimination communication potties for:
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Comparison Photos of Elimination Communication Potties
Before we dive into the best elimination communication potties for home, travel, and newborns, here are some comparison photos of some of the smallest EC potties available in the USA.
First of all, from left to right: chamber pot; Potette Plus with reusable liner; Ikea Lilla Potty; and BabyBjorn Smart Potty. We'll discuss more details about these potties below.
Goldilocks and the Just Right Potty
Have you seen the book Goldilocks and the Just Right Potty? It's on my wishlist! Sounds like the story of my EC'ing life...always searching for the perfect potties for my babies. I'm doing what I can to make that search a bit easier for you.
My son used the BabyBjorn Smart Potty from the time he was a newborn (just the insert in my lap) until he was 3-years-old. It's still one of my top recommendations!
We've been trying out some other potties with my daughter so that we can figure out which ones are best for babies practicing elimination communication. Here's my daughter at 8-months-old demonstrating four different small potties.
Here are the potties my daughter has mostly been using so far on her elimination communication journey which started from birth. Shown are the top hat potty, Potette Plus, and discontinued BecoPotty. The top hat potty worked best for the first two months.
Best Elimination Communication Potties for Home
If you plan to only purchase one potty to use for your child's entire potty learning journey, I recommend getting a BabyBjorn Smart Potty. It is a useful tool from the newborn stage through toddlerhood. The compact Smart Potty fits babies who are sitting up unassisted and young toddlers. It is a two-piece potty with a removable insert that allows for easy cleaning.
The removable insert can also be used alone as a top hat potty. This is especially helpful during the newborn phase and for nighttime EC. Hold the potty insert securely between your legs and then hold your baby over the insert. For pottying while breastfeeding, it works well to hold your baby in the cradle hold with one arm and use the other hand to hold the potty insert below your baby's bottom. Tilt the front of the insert (with the splash guard) up for boys!
My son used the BabyBjorn Smart Potty since he started EC at one-month-old. Even when he was three-years-old and potty independent, he still liked to use it for pooping. He would dump it in the toilet, rinse the potty with the toilet sprayer, and flush the toilet. He preferred to stand to pee into the big toilet and squat to poop in the small potty, which is more ergonomic.
When I asked other EC'ing parents which was their favorite potty, the second most popular response was the high-backed BabyBjorn Potty Chair. This model is not my favorite, since it is wider and also higher off the ground, making it harder for the baby to firmly plant their feet on the floor.
The Baby Potty -Mini Potty is designed especially for babies practicing elimination communication and young toddlers who want to get onto the potty independently. It is a similar size to the discontinued BabyBjorn Little Potty, which was smaller than either of the two BabyBjorn potties currently available. It has a high splash guard to help keep pee in the potty. There is a handle on the back to make it easy for toddlers to empty it into the big toilet, however, both the handle and the bottom edge of the potty are sharp. It doesn't have any non-slip grippy material around the bottom edge like the BabyBjorn potties have. This is a very thin potty, so it's probably best for EC away from home.
You can receive $5 off your order with coupon code ECPEESYTINY.
The Ikea Lilla Potty, which many refer to as "the little green potty" is an economical option, especially if you are near an Ikea store. The Lilla Potty is a nice small size for babies. It is one solid piece, so when it's time to dump and rinse the potty, you will need to take the entire Lilla Potty along to clean it.
The Lilla Potty works for EC at home and is also a popular choice to keep in the car or trunk, for practicing elimination communication away from home. Unfortunately, the Lilla Potty is too big to fit in a medium size Planet Wise Wet Bag, so it would not work as well for carrying along with you on-the-go.
Another favorite elimination communication potty is the BecoPotty. It is made of biodegradable plant-based plastic, so after you are done using it as a potty, you can allow it to break down in your yard. I was so happy when I discovered this eco friendly option. Unfortunately, the BecoPotty is no longer manufactured, so it is getting harder to find. If you see one, you might want to snatch it up, before they are all gone! For size comparison, here is a photo showing the Potette Plus with reusable liner, the BecoPotty, and the BabyBjorn Smart Potty.
And the new Mini Potty next to the discontinued BecoPotty. They are a similar width, but the Mini Potty is shorter. The bioplastic from which the BecoPotty is made is much thicker and heavier than the super thin and lightweight Mini Potty.
Best Elimination Communication Potties for Travel
It is helpful to have a compact folding potty for trips around town. A travel potty is especially useful for the toddler stage, when your child is too heavy to hold over a public toilet. I was so happy to have the Potette Plus for road trips when my son had recently switched to wearing underwear and would only give us short notice when he needed to potty.
For extended holiday travel or while traveling abroad, I recommend bringing your child's favorite potty from home. Even if it seems big, get a tote bag to carry it along. We took our son traveling in SE Asia for a year when he turned one-year-old. We left behind our beloved BabyBjorn Smart Potty and brought the Potette Plus. I really regretted that decision. The Potette Plus was too wide to use in my lap for nighttime EC and the reusable insert was too flimsy to use alone as a top hat potty. If you are traveling somewhere long-term (weeks, months, years...) bring along your baby's favorite potty. It's worth it!
For errands around town or a weekend get-away, a folding travel potty can be carried along in your diaper bag, backpack, or large purse. As you can see from the photo below, the BabyBjorn Smart Potty is much larger than the folded Potette Plus.
One of the best travel potties for elimination communication is the Kalencome 2-in-1 Potette Plus. It can be used either as a stand-alone potty or as a toilet seat reducer. When it is used in the potty configuration, it can be used with disposable liner bags or a collapsible reusable liner. The potty configuration is useful for using at a park or beach, when there is no bathroom nearby.
I purchased the Potette Plus for my son when he was a baby, but soon realized that it was too large for him. He almost slipped right through the middle into the toilet. Good thing I was holding onto him! For my son, who has always been small, the Potette Plus worked best once he was a toddler.
My daughter, who is much chubbier, started using the Potette Plus at 3-months-old. She fit well on it with the reusable liner and was also able to use it as a seat reducer on public toilets.
The main feature I love about the Potette Plus is that it can be used with a reusable liner. If I'm not near a bathroom where I can rinse it out, I put a preemie prefold into the collapsible liner to soak up the pee. Then I put the wet prefold into my wet/dry bag along with the other wet diapers. It's a great zero-waste solution!
The OXO Tot 2-in-1 Go Potty for travel is a great option for using as a toilet seat reducer in public bathrooms. It can also be used as a small potty with disposable liners. Unfortunately, there is no reusable liner available.
If you are reading this OXO Tot, please offer a reusable liner for your travel potty! Then it would be, by far, my favorite potty for packing in my diaper bag.
The OXO Tot travel potty has a more comfortable seat design with a smaller opening than the Potette Plus. The legs release with a button and are much easier to fold and unfold. (The legs tend to fall off the Potette Plus if you pull too hard.)
Comparison of Potette Plus and OXO Tot 2-in-1 Go Potty
Disposable liners are available for both the Potette Plus and the OXO Tot 2-in-1 Go Potty. Or you can improvise and use a plastic bag lined with a paper towel. Disposable liners are useful when you are on-the-go and don't have access to water to wash out the potty. You simply tie the bag shut and toss it in the trash. (If it contains poop, I suppose you technically should dump the poop in the toilet and then dispose of the bag in the trash. Did you know you are supposed to do that with disposable diapers too?)
A collapsible reusable liner is available for the Potette Plus, but not the OXO Tot 2-in-1 Go Potty. The reusable liner is particularly useful if you use the Potette Plus at home, in the car, or in a hotel room. It also makes the rim of the seat more comfortable.
Kalencom Potette Plus
- Outer measurements when folded: 8.75" W x 8.5" L x 2.75" D
- Opening in the center: 5.75" W x 7" L
- Height when unfolded: 5" (to the top of the splash guard)
OXO Tot Go Potty for Travel
- Outer measurements when folded: 10" W x 11" L x 2.8" D
- Opening in the center: 5.25" W x 6.5" L
- Height when unfolded: 6" (to the top of the splash guard)
When folded flat, the outer dimensions of the OXO 2-in-1 Go Potty are larger, so it will take up more room in your bag. However, the opening in the middle is smaller, making it a better fit for a baby or young toddler!
Best Elimination Communication Potties for Newborns
When practicing elimination communication with a newborn, one option that I mentioned above is to place the insert from the BabyBjorn Smart Potty in your lap and hold your baby over it. During the newborn phase it is also common to hold your baby over the large toilet in EC hold, or sit backwards on the toilet with your baby.
If you want a separate potty to use specifically during the newborn phase, you can use a top hat potty or chamber pot. These are also useful for nighttime EC or traveling.
A top hat potty is the classic newborn potty. It is shaped like an upside down top hat, with a wide rim. You can place a top hat potty between your legs and hold your baby over it. Top hat potties work well for nighttime EC, nursing while pottying, and travel. I enjoyed using The Baby Potty: a top hat potty with potty cozy and non-slip band while practicing EC from birth with my second baby. You can receive $5 off your order of a top hat potty from Tiny Undies with coupon code ECPEESYTINY.
Old fashioned chamber pots are great for EC! This enamel chamber pot is a darling option. I purchased it from Nova Natural, but they no longer seem to carry it. You might be able to find something similar on eBay.
Best Toilet Seat Reducers for Elimination Communication
A discussion of the best elimination communication potties just wouldn't be complete without mentioning some toilet seat reducers. A toilet seat reducer sits on top of an adult sized toilet seat, to shrink it down to baby or toddler size.
My son started using a toilet seat reducer when he was about six-months-old. It was especially useful for catching his daily morning poop, since it went straight into the toilet.
With my daughter I tried to skip using a plastic toilet seat reducer and go straight to a built-in adult/child toilet seat. That didn't work out, since the hinges came loose on the toilet seat. Now I'm back to researching seat reducers.
Prince Lionheart weePOD Basix - Discontinued
With my first baby we mostly used the Prince Lionheart WeePod Basix (pictured with Baby above). This model is made from a soft squishy foam. The shape of the Basix raised my son's knees and helped put him in a position similar to squatting. One drawback with the WeePod Basix is that it has a tendency to rip in half, especially if your baby likes to pull up on the front of the reducer.
*I no longer recommend this reducer in light of the class-action lawsuit alleging injuries to toddler boys when their genitals stuck to the Prince Lionheart WeePod Basix.
OXO Tot Sit Right Potty Seat
We purchased the OXO Tot Sit Right Potty Seat when my daughter was 9-months-old. We've been using it almost exclusively now that she's almost 12-months-old. She really likes that it has handles she can hold onto while sitting on the big toilet. At first she would stick her hand through the handle and get it stuck, but she stopped doing that. My daughter practices trying to put it onto the toilet herself.
I like the rounded shape of the OXO Tot toilet seat reducer. We also tried the Ikea toilet seat reducer, but that one was so flat that it didn't elevate her knees at all. This one doesn't exactly create an ergonomic squatting position, but it is pretty good for a seat reducer. It's hard plastic but still comfortable. I like the non-slip grippy material along the bottom edge.
Here are some comparison photos of the OXO Tot 2-in-1 Go Potty for Travel and the OXO Tot Sit Right Potty Seat. The OXO Tot travel seat reducer doesn't have a ledge that extends down into the toilet, preventing pee from spraying out between the seat reducer and the toilet seat, but the OXO Tot Sit Right Potty Seat does.
Bumbo Toilet Trainer Seat
I am always keeping an eye out for recommended elimination communication supplies! I've heard in the EC circles that the Bumbo toilet seat reducer is a great shape for babies practicing EC. If you have tried it with your baby, please let me know in the comments section how you like it!
Squatty Potty Kids Potty Pet
The Squatty Potty Kids Potty Pet is a dual height step stool and toilet seat reducer. It looks like an awesome combo for toddlers. The adjustable step stool would raise a toddler's knees, creating an optimal squatting position. I'm just not sure if this would work as well for a baby, since their feet probably wouldn't reach the step. If you try it, please let me know how you like it!
I had high hopes for the Top Seat Tiny Hiney built-in adult/child toilet seat. I was hoping to avoid purchasing a plastic toilet seat reducer for use at home with my second baby. I liked the idea of a wooden toilet seat that was securely attached to the main toilet seat. That way I wouldn't have to worry about the reducer slipping off the toilet.
We used this option for a few months, but we ended up taking it off of our toilet. Unfortunately, like some of the reviews say, the hinges come loose, so the entire child and adult toilet seat slips around on the toilet. I was afraid someone might smash a finger under the slipping toilet seat. The magnet that holds the child seat up is also super strong, making it difficult to pull down while holding my baby in my other arm.
If you have tried a similar built-in adult/child toilet seat, please let me know in the comments if you like the brand you tried. Thanks!
That wraps up our recommendations of the best elimination communication potties for home, travel, and newborns, as well as the best toilet seat reducers for EC. You may also want to view our list of Elimination Communication Supplies.