The 7 Best Step Stools For Potty Training, According To An Expert

Plus, tips for knowing when your kiddo is ready.

The best step stools for potty training
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If your toddler is showing signs that they’re ready to drop their diapers and start using the toilet, you may be wondering what the best way is to set them up for success. Scary Mommy reached out professional potty training expert and published author Allison Jandu to learn about the best step stools for potty training and how they encourage independence while setting up toddlers (literally) with the prime position for the job. Read on to find out what the classic potty training readiness signs are and Jandu’s personal favorite potty products.

The Expert

Allison Jandu is the founder and owner of Potty Training Consultant. She’s completed over 5,000 hours of research on all things potty training and has helped thousands of families with their potty training needs. She is also a four-time published author on the topic and a mom herself. She developed her passion for potty training when training her own two kids and has been bringing reliable, science-based potty training resources to families all over the world. She holds a BS from the University of Baltimore.

What Age Do You Start Potty Training?

Most children are ready to begin potty training around the age of 2. But Jandu says being aware of tell-tale signs that a child is ready to begin potty training is more important than age, as all children develop at their own pace. “Your child may exhibit one or all of the [following] signs, and it's important to remember that they are signs, not requirements!” explains Jandu. “For the kids that don't ever seem interested or ready, it is perfectly okay for parents to introduce the process when they are physically capable of doing so.”

Developmental Potty Training Signs:

  • Possessing basic communication skills (These can be either verbal or non-verbal but we need the child to be able to express their needs to us in some way)
  • Having the ability to understand and follow basic directions
  • Mimicking the actions of adults
  • Wanting to please and/or seeking adult or peer approval
  • Sitting, standing, and walking independently (Fine motor skills such as dressing/undressing can come later)

“Potty-related” Potty Training Signs:

  • Having a general interest in the bathroom
  • Staying dry for longer periods (typically an hour or more) throughout the day
  • Waking up dry
  • Asking for a diaper change when they are wet or soiled
  • Hiding to poop

What Is The Prime Potty Position?

Small potty training potties are great because they’re kid-sized and portable. Jandu says that while these tiny potties aren’t necessary, ensuring that kids are in the right potty position is. “If using the standard toilet alone, it's important to have your child's feet supported and not dangling so they are in the optimal physical position for releasing their bladder and bowels,” she said, adding that potty training step stools are a great tool.

Ready to find the best step stool for potty training your toddler? Scroll down to shop our top Amazon picks.


Expert’s Choice: A Toddler Step Stool With Rails & An Adjustable Footrest

Little butts can fall right through the toilet seat if not careful, making this toddler step stool — with rails and a seat reducer — a great option. It fits all standard toilets — even elongated models — and the sturdy construction and anti-slip base help keep it in place. Importantly, an easy-to-adjust footrest helps keep kids in the comfiest position possible.

Expert Review: “I ordered this for Shawn Johnson East when they were looking for recommendations for potty training their daughter, Drew, and she absolutely loves it!” — Allison Jandu

Dimensions: 26 x 15.6 inches (L x W) | Maximum Weight: 150 pounds | Available Colors: 2


A Folding Step Stool To Save You Space

This multi-functional step stool is lightweight and easy to move from one place to the next with the pop-up handle. The height is great for potty training and the surface is covered with grippy dots. But the best thing about this stool is that it folds away for quick space-saving, making it ideal for small or shared bathrooms. Plus, it has a sturdy weight limit of 300 pounds in case you need to use it to reach something in a pinch. Choose from seven fun colors.

Helpful Review: “I initially purchased this stool for our small bathroom, which needed something that was space saving when our child was washing hands and potty training. We have since moved and keep the stool around for our main bath, but I purchased a second one that I keep upstairs to reach tall closet shelves. I love that it folds up and can be tucked away, and isn’t merely for children!”

Dimensions: 8.5 x 11 x 9 inches (L x W x H) | Maximum Weight: 300 pounds | Available Colors: 7


A No-Frills Toddler Step Stool For A Great Price

An essential toddler step stool that comes backed by more than 10,000 perfect five-star ratings, this pick proves that sometimes simple is better. This Dreambaby step stool is lightweight, the perfect potty-training height, and super affordable. Both the base and footrest are non-slip, and reviewers love its contoured, space-saving design that’s easy to clean.

Helpful Review: “I did a lot of debating when picking a stool for my little one to use while potty training. I have very little space and wanted something easy to store that was ALSO easily accessible for emergencies. This one fits perfectly on the curve of the toilet base and doesn't even have to be slid in front for my little one to use it. It's pretty sturdy too, I would have no qualms in using it myself.”

Dimensions: 10 x 14.5 x 6.5 inches (L x W x H) | Maximum Weight: 176 pounds | Available Colors: 2


A Squatty Potty Designed Just For Kids

Squatty Potty started as a small family business with a single product and has grown into a viral phenomenon. This kids-size Squatty Potty now brings the benefits of its ergonomic design to the littlest poopers. It features two non-skid steps and the cutest floppy-eared design (those ears double as handles) that kids will love. A matching kids' seat is available to purchase separately or as a set.

Helpful Review: “I love the ease of using this stool for potty training our daughter. She can easily carry it from the sink to the toilet so she can reach on her own. The cute puppy really attracted her to using the big potty on her own. We love this stool.”

Dimensions: 13.75 x 14.63 x 10.75 inches (L x W x H) | Maximum Weight: 250 pounds | Available Colors: 1 (also available as a base and seat bundle)


A 3-in-1 Potty Training Step Stool That Doubles As Storage

This 3-in-1 step stool is going to be your kid’s potty training pal by helping them reach the toilet (and sink) all on their own. The slip-resistant grip will help keep them safe and the lightweight design will allow them to move it around on their own. As they grow, the stool can be separated and used as either three different stools or as handy storage (think: toys, cleaning supplies, and other bathroom essentials).

Helpful Review: “We LOVE THIS! It’s so easy to move yet very steady to stand on. My 3 yo granddaughter uses it at my house and in our RV….potty or washing hands or helping in the kitchen. It’s perfect! Love that it can be separated for different heights.”

Dimensions: 10.7 x 13.4 x 9.4 inches (L x W x H) | Maximum Weight: 300 pounds | Available Colors: 5


This Kids’ Wooden Step Stool That Blends In With Your Decor

This 2-step wooden toddler step stool is an eco-friendly choice and great for the whole family since it can hold up to 300 pounds. It’s easy to assemble and comes with optional stick-on carpet liners that add a non-slip surface to the thick step boards. Reviewers say it’s made well and sturdy. Use it for potty training, teeth brushing, and even in the kitchen.

Helpful Review: “This is a great little step stool for the kids bathroom! It's a great height for both sink and potty so they can easily get to either. Easy to assemble, and super sturdy.”

Dimensions: 12.8 x 13.4 x 12.9 inches (L x W x H) | Maximum Weight: 300 pounds | Available Colors: 1


This Versatile Toddler Learning Tower

Learning towers are great for helping kids safely access everyday surfaces and items around the house — kitchen and bathroom counters, high beds, and yes, even the toilet. The tall handles on this two-step learning tower provides kids with a sturdy place to hold tight, whether climbing, standing, or sitting. And the lightweight construction means they can tote it around on their own.

Helpful Review: “This is a great step stool for potty training. Was looking for something with sides that my little one could learn how to turn around without falling off the step stool. Took me about 5 minutes to assemble, and it’s light weight enough my son can move it if he wants to.”

Dimensions: 24 x 17 x 15 inches (L x W x H) | Maximum Weight: 200 pounds | Available Colors: 4


Also Nice: The Expert’s Book To Get Toddlers Excited About Going Potty

Written by potty expert Allison Jandu, this adorable children’s book helps toddlers get excited about the task at hand with fun illustrations and a catchy song. It’s earned more than 3,000 perfect five-star ratings on Amazon and parents report that little ones love the rhyming verse. The best part? Your toddler will want to read this book on the potty.

Helpful Review: “I bought some seven or so books about using the toilet for toddlers, and this is by far the most flexible and useful. The storyline works, there's a lot of detail (although I think it would be even better with a picture of the pee or poop in the potty) and the illustrations are great. The child is brown with dark hair and not clearly a boy or a girl which is nice. The little song is the best part!”


Worth Considering: This Editor-Fave Potty Training Book

The expert tips featured in this fan-favorite (and editor-approved) potty-training book are a great way to start the journey, so you’ll be fully prepared and do just like the title suggests: Do It Once and Do It Right. The proven six-step plan was written by a potty training expert and social worker, Jamie Glowacki, better known as the “Pied Piper of Poop.”

Editor’s Praise: “When it came time to start potty training my daughter, this was my guide — and I’ve since recommended it to all my new-parent friends because it just works. The advice and recommendations are accessible and easy to grasp, and it’s so nice to have a book that breaks it all down for you.” Kate Miller, Scary Mommy Editor


Allison Jandu, founder and owner of Potty Training Consultant.