Skip to main content

The difference between baby drool bibs and feeding-time bibs

Here's how to know if your little one needs feeding-time bibs or baby drool bibs

A young child wearing a bib sitting in a high chair.
LightField Studios / Shutterstock

A common thread among newborns and toddlers is they know how to make a mess. To help keep your baby and home a bit cleaner, it’s good to know about the different types of bibs. Bibs are a baby essential, and even when you have a toddler, they are a great thing to have. From spit-up to mealtime messes, it’s handy to have a little help catching those oopsies only little ones know how to make. Let’s discover what makes baby drool bibs and feeding-time bibs different from each other and why you should invest in both for your little one.

A baby sticking out their tongue and wearing a bib.
New Africa / Shutterstock

The reason to grab a drool bib

Babies can’t help but make a mess with all of that constant drooling. Until they’re a year and a half to two years old, they haven’t developed oral muscles to control their drool, but this excess drool helps them digest food when they start solids. When they’re teething, their drooling intensifies. A drool bib prevents neck rashes that develop by letting you wipe away dribble around their mouth before it reaches those adorable chin folds.

The main features of a drool bib and what to look for when shopping for one

The size: Drool bibs are smaller than feeding-time bibs. Their main purpose is to keep the front of your baby’s shirt dry. The bib is just large enough to cover your baby’s upper chest and neck. If your little one has started crawling, drool bibs will help your floors and other surfaces stay drool-free.

The fabric: These bibs are usually made of absorbent fabrics that wash easily and dry quickly, like flannel, heavy cotton, and even bamboo, or you’ll find a fabric blend like cotton knit jersey or microfleece. Most bibs are made with two layers for optimal absorption and these fabrics should withstand heavy washing.

The styles: Since drool bibs are meant to be worn all day, they should fit snugly. You have multiple options with snaps, Velcro material, or buttons. The most common are adjustable metal or plastic snaps to keep the bib on your baby even when they’re playing.

You might also opt for bandana-style bibs, which are less bulky than the traditional rounded shape. Bandana bibs have a higher collar, which keeps drool off of your baby’s chest and neck. Some bandana-style drool bibs have a silicone arrow tip for teething babies. These two-in-one bibs are helpful from birth until toddler age. A bandana bib is also a little more difficult to take off, so it stays secured, even if your child tries to pull it off their neck.

Besides bandana-style bibs, you may opt for traditional styles with a plush collar. These catch drool, milk, food, and prevent neck rashes.

Happy baby in highchair eating
Catherine Delahaye / Getty Images

Why feeding-time bibs are a must-have

Whenever your baby begins to self-feed, a mealtime bib will help keep food on their plates and off their clothes a little bit better.

The size: Feeding-time bibs are typically larger than drool bibs and offer wider coverage to protect your baby’s clothes and skin from mealtime messes. A feeding-time bib should cover your baby’s chest and shoulders, but larger bibs that cover their stomach and arms are a plus.

The fabric: Mealtime bibs are made of waterproof or almost waterproof fabrics, which makes them easy to wipe off or clean after their meal. At the end of the day, you just toss them in the washer or hand-wash them and air dry.

Feeding-time bibs are often made of silicone that wipes down quickly and of food-grade silicone to ensure they’re safe to use, especially for younger children.

The styles: Feeding-time bibs come in various styles. The scoop bib looks like a traditional bib but with an added pocket at the bottom. This pouch catches food, drool, and other debris during mealtime.

Try a long-sleeved bib or a smock bib, as these bibs are like open-back long-sleeved shirts that are easily taken off after a meal. The added coverage keeps even the messiest baby food-free. Baby smocks offer a short-sleeved option if that seems more comfortable.

One disadvantage about long-sleeved bibs is they’re often a specific size. Unlike traditional bibs, which are adjustable and could be used for months, your little one may outgrow their pair of long-sleeved bibs more quickly.

Baby in highchair eating avocado puree.
Mcimage / Shutterstock

Other factors to consider to find the right bib

Whether you’re shopping for drool bibs or a heavy-duty feeding-time bib, opt for products with adjustable neck fasteners, as bibs that have a wide use age range are more practical. For instance, a bib for 6-24 months is more ideal than a bib for 6-12 months. It also guarantees a comfortable fit for your baby because you can adjust the fasteners accordingly.

Besides fit and comfort, you want to think about colors and patterns. This is where the fun comes in! Bold designs are not only visually pleasing, but they hide stains, so consider purchasing bibs with prints when possible. Smaller, absorbent drool bibs are excellent for all-day use, while larger waterproof feeding-time bibs are fit for food messes.

Baby in a highchair at the table eating.
Catherine Delahaye / Getty Images

The need-to-knows about bibs and your baby

Does every child need a bib? Do you need both kinds? That’s up to the wonderful world of each baby being completely different and unique.

When you should buy bibs, too

Most babies start their drool school around 6 months of age. That’s also when most babies are eating a pretty good diet of solid foods and will make mealtimes their personal messy time. While having everything for the first year by the time baby is born is great, you don’t need bibs right away.

There’s no proper number of bibs you need

Whether you want a bib for every single day, two for each day in case of big messes, or you’re going to wash constantly and only need a few of each kind, that’s going to be up to your lifestyle. If your child is prone to rashes, change their bib multiple times a day and give their neck time to air out. Once you know how messy and drooly your child is, you’ll be able to adjust how many bibs you need. Start with a few and grow your amount from there to make sure you don’t purchase too many.

You could always get cloths instead

If you just aren’t a fan of bibs for whatever reason, there are plenty of burp cloths out there to get instead. If your baby doesn’t drool a lot and barely makes a spill when they eat, keep a couple of burp cloths around the house to help you keep your baby clean.

While some messes can’t be avoided, the right set of bibs may help prevent rashes and stained clothes. A handful of drool bibs and one or two feeding-time bibs should be fine, as long as they are durable enough to survive even the biggest of baby messes. We can’t guarantee using both bib styles will keep your whole house cleaner, but they will protect your precious little one from their own handiwork.

9 beautiful fantasy girl names for your baby
Get inspired with these fantasy choices
Baby girl at a birthday party

If you love all things fantasy -- from books and movies to video games and beyond, you may have considered a fantasy-inspired girl name for your baby. Thanks to the emerging popularity of this genre, fantasy names are becoming more and more common. Consider names like Arya, which took off after the premiere of Game of Thrones, or Arwen, which was popularized by J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings series. Names from fantasy books and movies can be an endless list to choose from.

If you've been thinking of a fantasy girl name for your little one, you have a lot of choices. We've compiled a list of nine beautiful fantasy girl names for your baby that are out of this world and that can help you narrow down your options.
Meaning "dawn," Aurora is well known for being Sleeping Beauty's given name. It is also the name of the mystical aurora borealis, otherwise known as the Northern Lights, which much of the U.S. was able to witness recently.
The name alone evokes images of fair maidens and fantastical settings and was also the name of King Arthur's Queen. The name was often translated into Jennifer, but we think Guinevere is a beautiful option for someone looking for a fantasy-inspired name.
From Latin meaning "youthful" or "queen of the gods," this name would be ideal for any little girl. Despite the name being around for centuries, it has grown in popularity over the last two decades or so.
A fantastical take on the traditional Sarah, Seraphine is less common than Seraphina, which is also a stunning name option, making it a great name choice for those who want something unique but not unheard of.
Another name popularized in The Lord of the Rings books, Eowyn, pronounced "ay-oh-wyn" is a nontraditional name rooted in the fantasy genre.
Another name that gained attention is Melisandre, which is of Old German and Old French origin and means strong in work and brave strength. The fantasy series Game of Thrones featured a character named Melisandre.
Fans of the 1988 movie Willow will recognize the name Sorsha as the name of the princess in the film. Meaning "bright" or "freedom," this is a beautiful fantasy name for a girl.
Evoking images of royalty, Dauphine is the name you're looking for if you want a fantasy name with some French flavor.
Give your little girl the moon with the name Luna, the choice of Chrissy Teigen and John Legend for their eldest daughter.

Read more
When do babies start walking? This is what you should expect
This is when you should have the house baby-proofed
Toddler boy walking around

We bribe. We beg. We will set that baby up for those first steps any way we can. But your little one will not start walking before they're ready. When is that? When do babies start walking? It's the next major milestone after crawling, and parents cannot wait to capture the moment their baby discovers they have two feet that will take them anywhere. If you have a baby who's about to become a walker, this is what you should expect before the first step is attempted.
Look for clues to tell when your baby will start walking

First things first — there are markers to watch out for to know your baby is about to walk. If you keep an eye on that little human of yours, they give hints as to when they're ready to start walking. By then, you can obsessively watch them so you don't miss a step.
Your baby will hit these milestones when it's almost time to walk

Read more
Unisex baby names: These are our top picks
Take the stress out of baby naming with these unisex name options
Baby girl with a "hello my name sign is" on her onesie

Unisex baby names are gaining in popularity as parents realize they have more options than ever when it comes to naming their baby. Some parents choose a unisex baby name because they love the name regardless of the gender of their baby, while others choose a unisex name because they are looking to distance themselves from those traditional "boy" or "girl" naming conventions.
Why we love unisex names

Although gender reveals are still incredibly popular, choosing a unisex baby name allows parents to give their baby a name they love, regardless of their sex. Many unisex baby names fall into the less traditional category, which is perfect for parents looking for something a little more unique for their child. If you're making a list of potential names for your baby, here are our favorite unisex baby names for consideration.
Atlas is the ideal name for any parent who wants their child to travel the world! This name of Greek origin has swiftly begun to climb the ranks of popularity in the U.S. since 2015. Celebrities like Edward Norton and Shay Mitchell have used this unisex name for their children.
Although Blair originated as a Scottish surname, it has grown popular as a unisex name in North America.
This name was more popular among boy names, but now Chase is often used by parents looking for a cool, unique unisex name for their daughters. Chase is giving us those athletic vibes.
Like Chase, Dylan was once primarily used as a boy name but has grown in popularity in recent years as a common choice for girls. The Welsh name means "son of the sea," but we can all agree that this is the perfect unisex name for any water baby.
Kai, often seen as a form of Kaia, is a name of Hawaiian origin dominating unisex name charts. It's simplistic but far from basic and is a beautiful choice for any parent looking for a dreamy unisex name.
Mackenzie is another name of Scottish origin that has been adopted from the surname and is almost equally popular as a name for both boys and girls.
Paris is known as the City of Love, making it the perfect name for your baby. Thanks to public figures like Paris Hilton, it may be known more commonly as a girl's name, but it is commonly used for both genders.
Morgan is one of the most traditional unisex names, making it great for parents who want a combination of the two. You could probably name as many girls as you could boys Morgan, making it a very popular unisex baby name choice.

Read more