Review: Three Toddler-Friendly Toilet Seats

Note: See our updated article written two years later.

I own three new toilet seats, which is two more than I’d like… though I really do appreciate them all. That’s right, I’m writing about toilet appreciation. What has become of me?

My sorry plight began a couple months ago when I began searching for a toilet seat that combines adult and toddler-size seats in the same unit.

There are inexpensive colorful plastic alternatives such as Flip-N-Flush that you install between your existing toilet seat and lid. I poo-poo’d the idea of a neon red or blue piece of plastic on a toilet our visitors may use.

More importantly, I prefer toddler accessories which blend into a normal household, treating my kid as an equal to mom and dad, rather than as a special case. My 27-month-old daughter is aware of product distinctions between kids and adults. For example, she wants to eat with our metal utensils rather than her toddler-size plastic ones. Why should a toilet seat be any different?

Here are three integrated toilet seats that have a child seat which stores compactly between an adult seat and the toilet lid.

Two marketing images stacked vertically showing the Xpress Trainer toilet seat opened and closed.Xpress Trainer by BP Solutions is the first seat I purchased. Unfortunately, it was only available for elongated toilets at the time of sale and we have standard-size toilets in our home. *cough* Don’t trust your wife to know your toilet type before you make an online purchase.

Xpress has a unique design. It is double hinged. The toilet lid nests on top of the toddler seat. An adult using the toilet can lift the two in a single action. The parts are made from hard plastic and feel durable.

The bad news: I bought the seat via the manufacturer’s eBay store which is not active as of this writing. I’ve been told the company is working to bring a standard size seat to market, and one would assume the seats will then be sold online.

Marketing photo of the PottyPal toilet seat opened.Dr. Merry’s PottyPal has a concave lid which conceals the toddler seat when closed. This seat is the one my daughter currently uses. She has no trouble lifting the lid and sitting down, but an adult lifting the lid would have to lift the toddler seat out of the way as a second motion. PottyPal is sold in both standard and elongated formats.

My beef with this product, and it’s quite minor, is that the seat’s plastic feels too thin. It’s perfectly fine for its intended use, but it has that “might crack” feel if I were to stand on the closed lid while trying to hang a picture on the bathroom wall. Also, all parts of the product, including the hinge and screws, are plastic.

I bought PottyPal because I was looking for a seat I saw at a brick ‘n’ mortar Target store and PottyPal was the only seat of its kind sold on Target’s web site. Whoops, it’s not the same seat. But hey, now both of my bathrooms will be kid-friendly.

Footnote: Dr. Merry’s web site, pottypal.com, is listed on the product’s box and literature, but visiting the web site reveals the domain is for sale. I called Dr. Merry’s toll-free line and was informed the web site “is down at this time,” but PottyPal is alive and well.

Photo of the Bath Basics Child and Adult toilet seatChild and Adult Toilet Seat by Bathroom Basics is manufactured by Target and sold in its physical stores. We discovered it by sheer accident while browsing an innocuous in-store display that contained toilet seats hung on a wall. Until we noticed the word “child” on a price tag, we didn’t know a child-friendly seat was in front of our eyes. Just like PottyPal, the child seat nests within a concave lid.

This seat rocks for two reasons. First, although it is painted white, it is made of wood and has a sturdy feel. Second, the toddler seat attaches to the lid with two hooks which prevent the seat from falling when the lid is lifted. The toddler seat is as out-of-the-way as possible for an adult.

On the flip side, a toddler might need help unlatching his seat. So this product works best in situations where you will leave the latch on or off most of the time. I purchased the seat on clearance for $14.

Note: In October 2008 Target began selling a new version of this seat with a thicker locking clip.

Close-up photo of a plastic clip held by a screw that keeps the child toilet seat nested in the toilet lid of the Bath Basics toilet seat.

Comments

26 Responses to “Review: Three Toddler-Friendly Toilet Seats”

  1. kj says:

    Glad you wrote these up. I’m completely on board with wanting, “toddler accessories which blend into a normal household.”

    I too, came across the Target model by chance (most decidedly NOT on sale). Oh joy! We wouldn’t have to cram another baby item (especially a yucky-to-clean potty chair) in our one tiny bathroom.

    Unfortunately, it didn’t work with our toilet. Our tank doesn’t sit back far enough for the lid to stay up. Since I’m not about to move the wall or the outflow pipe, the seat went back to Target.

    Likes: Very sturdy. Attractive chrome hinges. Seemed well made. Good customer service (It came with the wrong size nuts. I called the mfg. and they sent the correct parts right away.)

    Dislikes: Lid is very heavy. Probably would get dropped a lot by the butterfingers around here (me).

    Guess we’ll try the XPress trainer when it comes out in standard size (elongated size is available on Amazon). I like the configuration of the lid/toddler seat better. However, I wonder if our toilet lock (KidCo) will work on that model.

    Oh, and, uh, *cough*, I am the wife. And I not only know the size of our toilet, I installed it. Wax ring, flush mechanism and all. ;-)

    September 29th, 2006 at 2:53 pm

  2. HH says:

    As of October 3, 2006 can anyone tell me if this seat is still available at Target and, if it is, the code number? Thanks.

    October 3rd, 2006 at 4:44 am

  3. AJ says:

    The number on a red clearance tag and in fine print on my box corresponds to the following number I found on the store shelf tag: 097 08 0704

    It’s being sold as of October 3rd, but that’s just my particular Target store. Merchandise can vary from store to store, especially if Target is discontinuing this product.

    October 4th, 2006 at 3:12 pm

  4. LI says:

    I bought the Bathroom Basics one at Target today-it has been clearanced out at 9.98 and had to call a few stores to find it. I like the fact that the child seat fits inside the lid. The biggest drawback for me is that it doesn’t have any kind of splash guard for my son who is learning to go sitting down right now. He also has no intrest in using it right now either-but I’m sure in a few months he will be fine with it.

    I also bought the Target brand 3 in 1 potty chair that runs $10. I really like the fact it has a removeable cup that is easy to take out without getting pee thrown up in your face! My son weighs about 43 lbs and it seems to hold him fine. I started out with a Safety 1st 3in1, and it was not good for my son bcs it leaked pee on the floor since the splash guard is not long enough to cover the crack where the chair and the cup meet-and also everytime I’d take the cup out, it would get pee everywhere!

    October 6th, 2006 at 7:46 pm

  5. SG says:

    Can anyone tell me if this is going to be discontinued or if maybe they will be updating packaging. (They tend to do that, clearance out items, you think they won’t be selling it anymore, then – boom – it’s on the shelves with new packaging and some changes/improvements.) I called my Target and the shelf tag number above doesn’t read as anything. If it was the original code on the product, their system should be able to pull it up in case of returns. For at least 90 days…you’d think.
    Any help would be appreciated.

    November 29th, 2006 at 7:01 pm

  6. Karin says:

    I too accidentally happened upon the Target seat a few months ago and put it in my daughter’s bathroom. We love it. Now my downstairs toilet seat has broken!?! And I want to replace it with another child/adult seat, since we’re really into potty training now. But it has disappeared. The only comparable seat I can find is made in England and would cost me somewhere around $70! Any suggestions on where I could find another one?

    February 4th, 2007 at 1:23 pm

  7. Don says:

    Thanks to AJ for providing that number. My wife and I saw this seat on display and have tried and tried to get one; however, our Target had none in stock and the display had no identification on it. I’m still unable to get one, as it appears there are no more available…and we can’t seem to convince them to let us have the display. But it was nice to know that the thing existed outside of the local store…

    June 29th, 2007 at 3:13 pm

  8. Colin says:

    Just in case anyone is still looking “Onestepahead” also sells the Family Seat Potty Seat in either wood or plastic with a clip to hold the potty seat in place when not in use…………..just found it after doing a google search and about to make a purchase of a respectable $29.95……….ley you know how it goes.
    C

    July 16th, 2007 at 6:50 pm

  9. celeste says:

    I bought the Target toilet seat w/integrated toddler seat about two years ago, and it’s now broken (the plastic nut cracked). Does anyone know if it’s still being sold?

    August 5th, 2007 at 6:10 pm

  10. Sherry says:

    I have 2 of the Bathroom Basics Target seats that I have had for just over one year. On both of them the “chrome” hinges are green and corroded and the paint keeps chipping off the adult seats. The paint chips for 2 reasons: 1) the clips that hold the toddler part of the seat broke off immediately and now the toddler seat keeps falling down and hitting the adult part of the seat (the toddler seat is pretty heavy too, so it has scared my toddler); 2) The paint is also coming off right where the toddler seat rests and rubs on the adult seat when the toddler is seated.
    I hope this helps. I like these seats, but the quality is not good.

    September 4th, 2007 at 10:38 am

  11. DK says:

    Does anyone know if the XPress Trainer is available for purchase and if so where? Thx!

    September 24th, 2007 at 3:45 pm

  12. Jacky says:

    I bought a Bathroom Basic child/adult toilet seat from Target at clearance. When I tried to install it I found that the stem was broken. I called the manufactruer and told the item was discontinued. I f anyone have the hinge for that model, I will buy it or I can sell my new seat with broken stem if anyone interested.

    October 19th, 2007 at 9:19 am

  13. jessica says:

    For a good combo adult/kid potty seat, try toiletseatsource.com, where you’ll find the Magnolia Progressions seat ($44.99 + shipping). The kid seat is built into the toilet lid. I like the design, & it’s safer for little hands than lifting a big heavy lid. Good luck!

    October 24th, 2007 at 10:33 am

  14. CV says:

    Hello,

    I have been searching the internet for people with comments on potty training devices like you all here.

    Some of you may be pleased to know that I am the manufacturer of the Xpress Potty Trainer mentioned in this article. We are currently seeking out retailers for our product. In the meantime, we have put our website online. It is not a high-tech site but I think it will be effective for the time being. You can purchase the Xpress Trainer there.

    Please feel welcome to contact us anytime. We will be happy to hear from you all!
    Visit http://www.xpresspottytrainer.com for more info.

    Thank you,

    Charlie

    November 2nd, 2007 at 11:38 pm

  15. Granny says:

    I have one of the seats from Target and love it, but the clips broke and I cannot find out where to get new ones. Does anyone know?
    Thanks much.

    January 3rd, 2008 at 10:54 am

  16. yoyo says:

    if someone can tell me where can i find this specific toilet seat. i look every target store and i can’t find it

    January 21st, 2008 at 3:00 pm

  17. Kandalyn says:

    Thanks for this discussion. Wanted to let you know that I bought a Family Seat – Plastic by Trendy Kid on babycenter.com and it broke within two weeks. Cheap plastic hinges just broke apart. I’ve been reading online and it sounds like Dr. Merry’s Potty Pal may also suffer from cheap plastic hinges. I’ve seen a Kohler model but can’t tell if the hinges are good. I may write the company. Or I’ll try a FlipnFlush with a pretty color since I have to buy a new seat now and therefore could buy one with the requisite vertical hinges that my online readings suggests are necessary. Keep sharing!

    January 29th, 2008 at 11:47 am

  18. Janie says:

    Help. We have five grandsons…4&1/2 yrs and younger. I would like to find a toliet seat that stays up when “hurriedly” pushed up by young boys and doesn’t come crashing down on them. I would be very grateful for any information . Our plumber said he had seen toliets seats that stayed up at any angle. Does anyone know about such a seat? …and where to buy it???
    Thank you.
    Grandma “B”

    April 12th, 2008 at 9:26 pm

  19. Xpress Trainer Pro says:

    Grandma “B”, Our seats do stay up and are very easy for the little guys to lift. You and your grandkids will love this product!
    Our product is now available in both standard and elongated models. We are currently offering them on Amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/s?ie=UTF8&search-alias=baby-products&field-brandtextbin=Xpress%20Trainer%20Pro as well as eBay.com http://myworld.ebay.com/xpress_trainer_pro

    Please read the product reviews on Amazon.
    We have improved the design by adding a quick release for easy cleaning. It is very stable and durable. Designed to eliminate a child’s fear of the toilet and give them complete independence. Full money back guarantee if not completely happy.
    Thank you,
    Ken
    Cool Bath Design LLC

    April 30th, 2008 at 8:18 pm

  20. toddleratplay says:

    I got the Mommys Helper – Contoured Potty Seat and it seems to be simple and comfie for my son. The only thing I don’t like about it is the adhesive hook that came with it doesn’t stick to the wall so it’s a pain to store. The seat itself is great.

    August 31st, 2008 at 8:01 pm

  21. Shelley says:

    I’m in Canada and am wondering if anyone can tell me where/how to purchase the Xpress Potty Trainer. I have tried to order it through Cool Bath Designs (via Amazon) but it tells me that no shipping is available to Canada. Can anyone get me a telephone number or webpage that will ship to Canada….Thanks

    September 2nd, 2008 at 12:38 pm

  22. jamieburn says:

    Strange I’d come across this posting as we ran into the same thing just two days ago. Although their website isn’t up and running yet, you can order from CoolBath directly by sending an e-mail to coolbathdesign@msn.com. We’re waiting for ours to arrive with disturbing levels of excitement :-).

    November 6th, 2008 at 2:31 pm

  23. jill says:

    Excellent to come across while searching for toilet seats that are small bottom compatible! I actually saw them on some DIY show on tv and found mine later in Home Depot. At 30$ or so I was ok with that price, since the alternative was the plastic seats that sit in the regular seats. Excepting of course that those only really work on standard seats and all of ours are extended. For some time now two of our three toilets have had standard seats on extended toilets, which looks very odd to say the least. The one I found at the Home Depot has magnets that hold the toddler sized seat into the lid when not in use and my four year old has no problem lifting the lid and pulling the seat inside down. In the store it looks exactly like a regular seat and I almost didn’t realise what it was, the only saving grace was that I was looking for it specifically.

    April 25th, 2009 at 1:52 pm

  24. Judith says:

    Thanks so much for the advice (and the advice in the comments)! I am looking for a hidden seat right now for my son. The Kohler one seems to be the best reviewed but I can only find it for elongated toilets. I’ll go to home depot and target this weekend!

    August 10th, 2009 at 3:44 pm

  25. Annie says:

    There is an all-in-one adult/kids seat on the One Step Ahead site called the Family Seat Potty Seat. It comes in pine or white-painted wood for both round and elongated toilets ($50) and in white plastic for round toilets ($35). I cannot vouch for these, but their products tend to be well made. http://www.onestepahead.com.

    November 30th, 2009 at 3:37 pm

  26. Charissa says:

    Thanks for writing this post! I’m probably going to get the Xpress Trainer since it’s back in stock in the regular size.

    January 29th, 2011 at 12:05 pm