can 1 year old wear pull ups

Wondering if your lively 1-year-old can wear pull-ups? It’s a big question for many moms and dads. In this guide, we’re talking about pull-ups for little ones. We’ll explore if these cute diaper twins are right for your tiny explorer.

Let’s first understand what are pull-ups and why they are made.

Understanding pull-ups:

Let’s chat about pull-ups! These special pants are a big help during potty training. 

But here’s the real deal: they’re not meant to keep your little one super dry. I’ve noticed some brands claim they’re like magic sponges, but from my experience, that’s not true. They are not as absorbent as diapers.

Pull-ups are designed to catch accidents while letting your kiddo know when they’re wet. 

So, if you’re on the pull-up journey like me, keep in mind – it’s more about learning and less about staying extra dry!

Can a 1-year-old wear pull-ups?

Typically, 1-year-olds are not ready for potty training. Pull-ups are designed for this transition phase. If your 1-year-old isn’t actively potty training, it’s best to stick with traditional diapers. Consider your child’s developmental readiness and family preferences when choosing the right diaper type.

What about the night? 

Can a 1-year-old wear pull-ups at night? Well, not unless they’re on the potty-training mission! But if you’re giving it a go, throw in an extra mattress shield because those pull-ups might not be as absorbent as they boast. Change them often to keep your little one cozy.

Let’s talk about the pros and cons of using pull-ups for a new toddler. 


  • Pull-ups are designed for quick and easy changes.
  • Pull-ups serve as a transitional step from diapers to underwear, preparing your child for potty training.
  • Designed to catch small accidents while letting the child feel wet, aiding in the potty training process.
  • Ideal for on-the-go changes, especially with a wiggly or active 1-year-old.


  • Pull-ups may have less absorbency compared to traditional diapers, leading to potential leaks.
  • If not changed promptly, pull-ups may pose a risk of rash as there’s no barrier between the urine and the baby’s skin.
  • They can be more expensive than regular diapers, impacting the overall diapering budget.
  • Some children may become confused about the purpose of pull-ups, hindering the potty training process.
  • Pull-ups may not be as effective for overnight use, potentially leading to discomfort and disrupted sleep.
1 year old

Can a new toddler pull up and pull down the “pull-ups”?

According to aapf,The ability to pull up underwear or training pants is typically the last skill mastered, occurring around 29.5 months of age in girls and 33.5 months in boys.

Mastery of developmental skills required for successful toilet training typically occurs after 24 months of age.

Parents who overestimate their child’s readiness may inadvertently start training too early, potentially leading to prolonged training or toileting challenges.”

Considering the facts, your 1-year-old is likely not ready to use a pull-up on their own.

When your little one needs a pull-up instead of a diaper?

While 1-year-olds are generally not in the active phase of potty training, there are specific situations where pull-ups might be useful:

Beginning Potty Training (inactively):

If you’re starting to introduce a potty training journey around the age of 1, pull-ups can be a transitional option between diapers and underwear.

On-the-Go Changes:

Pull-ups are convenient for busy parents, especially during outings or travel, when quick and easy changes are necessary.

Child’s Interest in Potty:

If your 1-year-old shows early signs of interest in the potty or imitates bathroom behavior, pull-ups can be introduced gradually.

Preparing for Potty Training:

If you plan to start potty training in the coming months, using pull-ups can help your child get used to the idea of using the potty.

This post may contain affiliate links. Full disclosure here.

1-year-old sitting

What size pull-ups for 1-year-old?

For 1-year-olds, finding pull-ups can be a bit tricky, but Huggies comes to the rescue! 

Unlike many brands, Huggies offers pull-ups designed for this age, starting from 12 months. 

Specifically, the Huggies Size 3 pull-ups, being the smallest, are the perfect size for a 1-year-old.

Remember, sizing may vary, so check the packaging for precise recommendations.

Check out Huggie’s smallest pull-ups for boys, here. 

Check out Huggie’s smallest pull-ups for girls, here. 


As I don’t recommend pull-ups for 1-year-olds (unless you are trying to potty train), I have to offer an alternative as well. 

Pampers cruisers 360° diaper size 3 is by far the best option available for 1-year-olds. This can offer you all the good features of pull-ups and diapers; convenience, absorbency, and cost savings (it’s cheaper than a similar pull-up). 

Designed for active little ones, Pampers Cruisers offer a flexible fit, allowing for easy movement while providing excellent leakage protection. 

These diapers boast a 3-Way Fit to adapt to your baby’s shape, ensuring a snug yet comfortable experience. 

With easy-to-tear sides for quick changes and a soft, breathable material, Pampers Cruisers offer the best of both worlds; pull-ups and diapers. 

Click here to find out more about Pamper Cruisers 360° diaper on Amazon.


In the pull-up puzzle for 1-year-olds, it’s all about finding the perfect fit for your tiny explorer. From those first steps to the potty, every child’s journey is unique. Whether it’s diapers, pull-ups, or a mix of both, the adventure is yours to shape. So here’s to the giggles, the wiggles, and the endless love that makes every diaper change a tiny celebration.

Did you like the information above? Here’s more:

Pull-ups vs. Diapers (A parent’s guide)

Pull-ups vs. Diapers at night 

Can 1-Year-Old Sleep With A Blanket? (Safe Alternatives)

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