I was very excited when I was asked to review the FlexiBath, it is something that really appeals to me. Being a busy mum of two with little space in the house for anything but toys (it certainly feels like that a lot of the time!) a bath suitable from 0-4years that folds flat for storage sounds fantastic!
The FlexiBath is described as follows:
Bathrooms aren’t known for being the most spacious rooms in the house, so wouldn't it be great if you could just fold up your baby bath and stow it away when not in use? Now you can! The FlexiBath from Whitestep is the brainchild of Danish designers and is the first and only hard plastic children's bath tub that folds up flat in seconds.
It’s soft and pliable to the touch, very light, but remarkably strong, and suitable for children from 0 to 4. The Flexibath is ideal for holidays and travelling, and is also free of phthalates and other harmful materials.
When the FlexiBath arrived the delivery lady commented on how light my parcel was even though it was quite large (by large she meant long, as it was quite thin), and when she passed it over to me I totally agreed! In fact I was wondering what it could be, I was expecting the FlexiBath but hadn't imagined it to be SO compact!
I quickly unpacked it, and was pleased that it was a lovely bright red colour (it comes in a choice of 6 bright colours). The first thing I noticed is how thin it was! In fact it was so small that I was a little worried that my 3 year old would not fit in it at all!
So I unclipped the bath (it has a very simple, but clever clip attached to one of the side's of the bath) to unfold it. It was ready to use in literally seconds and I couldn't resist putting Millie into it straight away! She is 5 months old and at that stage where she can sit up but needs a little help, so I propped her up with the sides supporting her. It seems to be very stable, and not in any way flimsy! Obviously I had not put water in to it just yet though, I just wanted to see how she fit in! She is a very long baby but seemed to sit into it fine, I layed her into it and as she is so long she filled it!
The FlexiBath came just in time for us as it was the weekend we were off to Disneyland Paris (without Millie *sob*) so my parents we looking after her. Perfect time to try out the bath on our travels!
We had a very packed up car, I still do not know how we ended up with so much stuff for just a weekend away! But most of it was Millie's so I knew it would get off loaded once we got to my parents! The FlexiBath was the last thing I put in the car, and as it folds so flat it layed on top of stuff in the boot and took up next to no space!
My Mum bathed Millie in the FlexiBath whilst we were away, overall she could see the benefits of having such a compact bath. She said that Millie loved laying in the bath, she obviously felt secure and was happy to kick her legs and splash about. The problem she had was when bathing Millie in it whilst she was sitting up, there is not really any grip on the bottom of the FlexiBath so she slid all over the place and it was hard for my Mum (who already has a bad back) to keep her upright. I checked this out on the website and the spec claims to have non slip surface to prevent any accidents, so maybe this is something that needs to be reviewed? My Mum used the FlexiBath inside her own bath tub, it filled to the level she needed in seconds and removing the water with the rubber plug in the base was easy enough for her as an adult. She also pointed out that it would be hard for my son to take the plug out (a massive plus in my opinion!). Another point she made was that she would not be able to lift it with the water in it, so it would have to be used somewhere that the plug could be pulled out where the FlexiBath is placed.
When we got home back to our house I was excited to try the FlexiBath with my son as well as my daughter, so I placed in our bath tub, filled the FlexiBath with water and bubbles and let my son Chester get in first. He loved it! Sat in it well and was able to fit some toys in too! Its safe to say he was in there for longer than when I normally bathe him! What also occurred to me was that by bathing him in the FlexiBath I was saving water, fantastic! I am always looking of ways to save money, so this is a massive plus for me! We then put Millie in the FlexiBath, they both fit in with room to spare, but Millie had to sit up. This was a down side because just as my Mum had told us, it was hard to keep her sat up without her sliding all over the place. So she was out of the FlexiBath quite quickly. Again it was easy to empty, then once dry I folded it down and put into our airing cupboard with all the fresh towels.
Once the kiddies were tucked up in bed I started to think of other reasons I would use the bath. So I got it back out of the cupboard (it is so easy to unfold it took seconds), went to our en suite and placed it in the bottom of our shower cubicle. To my amazement it fit! So this meant that if we were to go away for a break away and the place we were staying only had a shower (quite often rooms with just showers are cheaper) we could take the kids and the FlexiBath and would not have to worry about how we would bathe them.
I also think it would be fab if you were going on a camping holiday, the water could just be drained away onto the grass. Another great use, which I have not been able to try out because of this awful British weather is in the garden! I would say as soon as Millie can confidently sit unaided I could use it instead of a baby paddling pool for her.
So in conclusion, Its a baby bath tub with a difference. I do think that the FlexiBath is worth the rrp of £29.95 if you are a family who spend time travelling, going on holidays, visiting relatives and have little spare space in your home. We are a family who fit into those categories so for us the positives far outweigh the negatives. Personally I would use it for a newborn to lay into, and then a child that was able to sit unaided. I do think that the fact it claims to be non slip needs to be looked at, with 2 separate family members finding out that it was not non slip with our Millie! I also think that once your children were beyond an age that they would fit into the FlexiBath that it would have other uses. For instance you could use it as a toy box, a laundry basket or even as a washing up bowl when you are camping! I know we will be making use of it for many years to come, it is so durable and I am confident that it will last a very long time!