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How Many Bibs Do I Need for My Baby? [For Burps & Spit-Ups]

How Many Bibs Do I Need

Nowadays, there are so many different materials, sizes, and types of bibs available to suit their child’s needs.

With so many bibs to choose from, you may find yourself wondering, how many bibs do I need? We suggest you keep yourself engaged with this article to find out.

SPOILER ALERT: You’re going to need MANY to keep your baby’s clothes clean!

Table of Contents
Table of Contents

The Answer

The Answer

So how many bibs will you need exactly?

The required number of baby bibs varies for each family, but you should consider having at least 10-20 drool bibs and 3-7 feeding bibs as an average starting point.

This amount allows a mother to use 3 baby bibs per day before washing the whole set. There should be more drool bibs since they can act as feeding bibs as well.

Why Do You Need Baby Bibs in the First Place?

How Many

Babies are known to be little bundles of joy, but any parent knows that they leave a lot of drool and leftover food, too. And that’s why it matters how many bibs you have.

But even so, parents love to dote on their children, and cleaning up after them is no problem with a handful of bibs.

Baby bibs keep the mess at bay. These include: 

  • Spit up from burping
  • Baby food that just missed your baby’s mouth
  • Drool buildup

To better protect your baby’s outfits, a single type of bib is NOT ENOUGH. This is the reason why baby product makers have come up with their own features and special material.

So for each kind, how many bibs do you need? Read on to find out:

Types of Bibs and Cloths for Babies

Just how many bibs do you need anyway?

You don’t necessarily need all types of bibs right away, though you may go through them as your child grows and his needs change.

It’s best to let your kids try wearing one first and see how the bib works before buying more.

1. Drool or Dribbler Bibs


Drool bibs are your first choice for bibs, which you will need the most as your children start teething or if your kids drool A LOT! And so you can never have enough bibs of this kind.

Dribbler bibs are typically cloth bibs since the soft cloth material does the following:

  • Absorbs your baby’s drool.
  • Wipe’s excess drool from your baby’s face.

This is why the material should be soft enough for the baby’s skin. Plus, since they’re ultra-soft, they’ll fit right inside your baby bag or diaper bag no matter how many bibs of this kind you get.

2. Feeding Bibs


Feeding bibs are a MODIFIED VERSION of your typical bibs with a wide lip at the end that acts as a crumb catcher for baby food and other food solids that messy eaters might miss.

Feeding bibs often have a plastic material that helps prevent stains from spreading to your baby’s clothes underneath.

They may be made of completely SILICONE or PLASTIC as well.

3. Smock Bibs


Smock bibs are also known as long-sleeved bibs. They cover from the baby’s neck until the knees, providing MORE COVERAGE for their baby clothes.

You would use them when your children are wearing those nice, organic baby clothes that would be difficult to get cleaned.

The full coverage also helps with easier cleanup when you’re feeding your baby at a restaurant or someone else’s home.

4. Disposable Bibs


Disposable bibs are good for when you don’t have extra bibs on hand while, for example, attending an event or while on vacation.

You can easily get rid of food and other messy things since disposable bibs can be thrown into the trash after a SINGLE-USE.

These things are your MOST INEXPENSIVE option if your babies don’t need to wear many bibs too often.

Some children have MORE DIFFICULTY keeping clean when it comes to certain food and stuff, so their parents only need to let them wear these bibs when they eat messier food.

5. Burp Cloths


Burp cloths fall under a different category of baby products, so they are not bibs, considering the baby does not always wear them.

You place burp cloths over your shoulder as you get your baby to burp. The burp cloth is there to catch babies’ spit-up that may sometimes happen.

Burp cloths are also considered multi-purpose bibs since you can drape the burp cloth over your baby’s shoulders to act as a bib as well.

We should also add that there are a number of cloth diapers that you can re-use as a burp cloth once your baby outgrows them.

At What Age Does My Baby Need a Bib?

At What Age

Your baby requires many bibs, usually when they start teething and produce more drool. However, it is also common for your baby to start drooling earlier on, as a newborn of 2-3 months.

Why So?

TEETHING stimulates the salivary glands of your child at this age, which were not as active during their milk-feeding.

This would be a good time to start buying more drool bibs if you already have some before the teething phase. Also, have some teething toys that your baby can gnaw on to soothe his gums.

A Timeline of Bibs You Should Buy

  • 2-3-month old baby: DROOL BIB
  • 4-month to 1-year old baby: FEEDING BIB
  • 1 and a half-year-old baby: NO BIB NEEDED 

Initially, drool bibs SHOULD BE your child’s first type of bib.

These things work well as feeding bibs for now since a newborn baby only drinks milk, which this cloth-type bib can quickly absorb.

Once the baby gets older, they use fewer drool bibs, which means you will need to switch them to a feeding bib when they learn to eat solid foods.

To summarize, the drool lessens once your baby reaches the age of six months old. And he/she is likely to stop using bibs altogether when they are a year and a half old in age.

Still, the actual timeline WILL DEPEND on your baby and vary across families.

Do Newborn Babies Wear Bibs?

Drool typically only becomes an issue when your baby starts teething.

However, if your newborn is a messy milk-drinker or tends to drool a lot, you can let your newborns and babies start wearing bibs.

How Many Bibs Do I Need for My Children?

How Many for Children

There is NO EXACT ANSWER to the question, how many bibs do I need?

That is because very young babies develop at their OWN PACE.

However, you can better estimate the optimal number of required bibs once you learn how to use each kind.

Expect to use all types of bibs only ONE TIME because it’s unlikely you have time to wash the others right away. This is why many bibs tend to be sold in sets.

Drool Capacity

Drool is one of the main reasons for using bibs, so expect to use them as early as the first few months.

If your child is a heavy drooler, you will have to use them all the way until they reach a year old.

Even if your baby doesn’t drool as much, it’s convenient for parents to have a soft cloth placed within arm’s reach of their child so they can use it to wipe accidental smears and smudges right away.

Feeding Time

The amount of both feeding and drooling bibs also depends on how often your kid eats. As you get to know your baby’s eating habits, you can start to increase the number of bibs accordingly.

While some can get by with a single bib, babies who don’t eat cleanly need to use up multiple bibs for every feeding session.

Laundry Day

The total number of bibs you need is greatly affected by how often you wash them.

It’s a tad idealistic to expect that you can wash a whole laundry set of bibs every day, so make sure to prepare EXTRA BIBS just in case you exceed your daily laundry limit after a messy day.

AND OF COURSE, make sure to use laundry detergents that are safe for babies.

More Tips for Mom and Dad

More Tips

On Wearing a Bib

Something you should keep in mind the most is to never let babies wear a bib while sleeping.

Wearing a bib during your child’s bedtime can easily become a choking hazard as your toddler rolls around, even if the appearance seems loose.

If it uses a tied ribbon, ensure that it is TIED SECURELY so the baby cannot play with it.

Bibs should only be worn when the baby is sitting up properly or held by an adult nearby.

What Should You Look for in a Bib?

What Should You Look For

Apart from the types of bibs, there are some factors you can take into consideration when deciding the type and quantity of bibs you need to buy:

Ease of Cleaning


Not all bibs are created equally, meaning some of them will be MORE SUPERIOR in terms of absorbency, gentleness, and cleaning efficiency.

Here are the recommended materials for each bib type:

  • CLOTH BIBS: Cotton/organic muslin
  • FEEDING BIBS: Plastic/silicone

For cloth bibs, make sure they are made of either cotton or organic muslin so they won’t irritate your baby’s skin.

Feeding bibs must be easy to clean because they are made from plastic or silicone. You can wipe or wash them quickly without taking too long to dry.

Both materials for feeding bibs work well, though silicone bibs catch the most foods since they’re more flexible than plastic bibs.

You can also check out our guide on washing baby clothes to help you keep your bibs in tip-top shape.



Normal bibs SHOULD cover the neck and upper chest of the baby to catch whatever doesn’t make it to the mouth.

However, smock bibs have sleeves that can be long or short and reach toward the arms.

Though having greater coverage is the best way to clean up food and mess, long sleeves can be uncomfortable to wear in warmer temperatures.

And so usually, a baby’s mother would check whether the occasion calls for a smock bib, such as during parties or events, or when a normal bib suffices.

Basically, the more coverage the better, but that also means you should be ready to get rid of those baby stains ASAP.

Quick Securing

Quick Securing

Bibs are fastened around the neck of your baby. This can be done by a hook, button, or Velcro strip.

Specifically, cloth bibs come in many designs.

Bandana bibs are examples of such. These bandana bibs are wrapped loosely around the neck area.

You may want to consider a type of bib that a baby can’t loosen too easily.

However, as your child grows older in age, you can use fastener ones so they can learn to remove them on their own.



Bibs come in all sorts of designs, and you can easily customize some.

You can choose an eye-catching one so your baby will like wearing them. Some women, ESPECIALLY mothers, embroider their babies’ names on the bib, so it’s easy to tell who owns it.

It’s better to use a unique pattern because

  • Your children will outgrow bibs someday.
  • You may have to lend it to others eventually.


The bib is one humble thing indispensable to parents of newborns.

Giving your baby a bib is one of those milestones to be remembered, so buy ones that are GOOD QUALITY so they last long once you pass them on.

They’re a great idea for baby shower gifts, and any mother-to-be will appreciate being given a hand with acquiring more bibs for her children.


July 23, 2021 – updated article links

About the author

Angelica Graham

A few years ago, Angelica found out about all the plastic and toxic ingredients that got into most children’s products. And this worried her to no end. Because of this, she began to research what the best ingredients and materials were for children and made it her mission to share this information with other mothers.