Shopping for a new baby is pretty exciting. Most parents tend to fill up trolleys or carts with items such as cute baby clothes, blankets, and sheets. What about burp cloths? And how many burp cloths do you need? Unfortunately, more often than not, burp cloths are bought as an afterthought or left out entirely!
So, exactly how many burp cloths do you need? Today I want to discuss why burp cloths are a must-have and what’s a good number to buy. I’ll take it a step further and discuss the recommended number of burp cloths to buy in relation to your baby’s age, and if there are other alternatives. I’ll also include a few recommendations based on my research.
Let’s get started!
How Many Burp Cloths Do You Need?
A good number of sources will tell you that you’ll need at least four burp cloths for your little one. I beg to differ. I say the more you have, the better. Burp cloths are used for much more than only burping your little one. How many? Between 10 and 12 is a good number.
These nifty cloths will come in handy when you have to wipe spit-ups and vomit. Also, on occasion, some babies may suffer from acid reflux or colic as I discussed in depth in this article. Aside from purchasing comfortable feeding bottles that minimize the amount of air inhaled during feeding, you’ll need to buy a bunch of burp cloths too.
You may ask: why so many to buy? Sometimes the spit-up can be intense. One big burp is enough to soil the entire cloth. Skimping on the number of burp cloths you have on hand at any given time will have you washing them every couple of hours. Not to mention the risk of eventually running out before the day is over.
Another way to determine how many cloths you need is to figure out the number of feeds you give your baby in a day. Ideally, every feeding session needs a fresh new burp cloth. It’s The healthy thing to do.
How Many Burp Cloths Do I Need for My Newborn?
On average, a newborn baby feeds around eight times in a 24-hour day, especially during the first few months. So to be safe, you’ll need at least eight burp cloths in a day for your newborn, maybe more.
Make sure you invest in quality burp cloths designed to effectively absorb liquids such as the Keababies Organic Baby Burp Cloths which feature 3 layers of soft and plush fabric.
Or, you get your hands on the ARNZION Baby Burp Cloths which are also soft, absorbent, and wide enough to protect your baby’s clothes.
How Many Burp Cloths Will I Need for My Baby’s First Year?
During the first year, a lot of spit-ups will happen. It shouldn’t be cause for concern if happening in small amounts. Simply stock between 20 and 30 burp cloths during this time. It’ll save you a lot of cleaning.
What are spit-ups and why do they occur? Spit-ups and acid refluxes are more apparent during the first year of your baby’s life. Why? Your little one’s muscle located between the stomach and esophagus which serves to keep food down hasn’t fully matured yet. It’s only after your baby’s first year of life does it become fully developed.
Will I Need Burp Cloths After My Baby’s First Year?
Burping ceases to be necessary as your baby gets older and their digestive system matures. But some older babies will still need burp cloths especially if they suffer from conditions such as acid reflux. Parents can budget for at least 4 burp cloths for 1 – 2-year-olds to be on the safe side.
Even if you don’t necessarily burp kids older than a year, it’s not uncommon for them to vomit if their little tummies are too full. Burp cloths will come in handy then.
Summary of the Number of Burp Cloths You Need
Here’s a summary of how many burp cloths you need per baby age or stage of their life. Hopefully, this will help you plan and budget accordingly.
|Age||Number of burp cloths|
|Newborn – 6 months||20|
|6 months – 12 months||15|
|1 year – 2 years||4/year|
Of course, you may need to replace burp cloths after 6 months of usage, so the above figures should only be used as a benchmark.
What Are Burp Cloths Used For?
You’ll learn soon enough that no feeding session is complete without burping your little one especially during the first 4 to 6 months of their life. Babies tend to swallow air while feeding. Burping your baby helps get rid of air which is known to cause great discomfort for your child.
Below is a video outlining the different safe burping techniques you can try out.
You could choose not to burp your child after each meal. But be prepared to deal with a cranky and squirmy baby because of all the gas in their little tummy.
If you’re lucky, only gas is produced during the burp. In some cases, small amounts of milk are regurgitated. No need to panic when this happens. It’s coined a “wet burp” in the medical world and is pretty normal. What you need to have is a burp cloth handy. Simply drape this small piece of cloth over your shoulder and burp your little one.
While burp cloths are specifically designed for use when burping your little one, you’ll realize how versatile they are. Babies are cute and adorable but can be very messy. Burp cloths will effectively clean up messes such as the following:
- Remnants of baby milk from your baby’s mouth
- Spit-ups from your baby’s clothes and yours too
- Wipe off vomit from your baby’s face
- Wipe off drool
Do I Need to Get Burp Cloths?
I’ll admit there are certain baby items you can do without. I can assure you burp cloths aren’t among them. You can decide to skip using burp cloths altogether during the burping process. The alternative is having your shirt soaked up with your baby’s spit-up. You decide. I still remember those artistic decorations on my black T-shirt whenever that happened.
These multi-purpose little cloths will soon become your go-to fabrics whenever you have to clean up little messes on your baby. And trust me, that’ll happen A LOT. Rather play it safe and be prepared.
You could argue you can use any towel, the nearest baby blanket, or some sort of cloth to wipe off these messes. But the reality is that burp clothes are specifically designed for this task. This means they’re made using soft materials which are effective at absorbing liquids. And also keep smearing to a minimum. The same can’t be said about regular towels or other random pieces of fabric for the mentioned purpose.
What is the Right Size for Burp Cloths?
We’ve gathered that burp cloths are small pieces of cloth. But how small is small? In other words, what is the ideal size for a burp cloth? Ideally, burp cloths should be small, but not too small, or else you’ll wind up with most of the milk, vomit, or drool on your hands or shirt. A 44 to 45 inches wide cloth is a safe size.
Do Cloth Diapers Make Good Burp Cloths?
If you do decide to use alternatives to burp cloths, consider cloth diapers. Cloth diapers are made using soft materials making them safe and gentle to use on your little one. Some parents also reckon swaddles make good burp cloths. This is because they are large enough to cover your entire shoulders and chest.
The key lies in making sure the material is soft, absorbent, and won’t cause harm when you wipe your baby’s delicate face.
Burp Cloths vs Washcloths vs Bibs: What is the Difference?
Many parents are confused when we talk of burp cloths, washcloths, and bibs. Some even use the terms interchangeably. This is because all three serve more or less the same purpose. The main difference is with burp cloths and washcloths: you can drape them on your shoulder to protect your clothes from baby spit-ups or messes while burping. Or use them to wipe your baby’s face. Bibs on the other hand are used by infants.
- Burp cloths are usually larger, thicker, and more durable than washcloths and bibs. Plus, they have excellent adsorbent properties.
- Washcloths are slightly smaller and thinner than burp cloths. They are usually small squares and made of soft cotton such as these Spasilk Terry Baby Washcloths.
- A bib is a garment that goes around your baby’s neck and hangs on the chest. It’s used when your little one is consuming messy foods to keep their clothes clean. An excellent example is these adjustable Upsimples Baby Bandana Bibs.
Whether you’re planning how many burp cloths to buy or request on your baby registry, hopefully, you now have a clear number to work with. Remember you’ll need more during the first year of your baby’s life since a lot of burping and drooling will be happening then. This way you’ll only need to launder burp cloths once a week leaving you to focus on more important things such as raising your baby!