You might be surprised how useful a portable bathtub actually is. If you are in the middle of a bathroom remodel, a portable bathtub is a life-saver because it allows you to stay clean, even when your shower has been ripped out.
We rate the 7 best portable bathtubs for performance, cost, portability, and overall quality.
- Suitable for toddlers, twins, and petite adults
- Folds almost entirely flat, easier to store and transport
- Durable PP and TPE material are BPA-free, ideal for children
- Super-lightweight design (weighs just 6.29 lbs)
- 30'' deep, immerse your entire body
- 3-layers of materials, including 2 PVC and a mesh foam layer
- One of the lightest bathtubs on the market(4.69 lbs)
- 3 layers of material, including insulating flocking and waterproof PVC
- Holds over 26 gal of water, ideal for adult use
- Made from eco-friendly PVC, is non-toxic, won’t pose any threat to the family
- Lightweight and easy to store and transport
- 110V electric pump, which inflates the bath in 3 minutes flat
- Fits 2 adults with ease
- Doubles up as a kid’s summer pool on hot days
- Electric pump to make inflating it easier
- Fits under existing mattresses, lying entirely flat
- Inflate it with a foot pump and it fills via a bag attached to an IV pole, the bed frame or another mount
- Wash and shower in the comfort of your room
- Folds down for easy storage and portability
- 4 layers of material for increased insulation and durability
- Strong support poles and a detachable drain valve
Benefits of Portable Bathtubs
If you are in the middle of a bathroom remodel, a portable bathtub is an ideal alternative if your shower and bathtub have been removed. You can also convert a shower enclosure by placing the portable tub in the shower tray and filling it like a bath.
You might like taking a bath in the open air, to make the most of a view from your veranda. A portable bathtub allows you to do this, and when you are done, the prize roses get a good watering.
If you are camping and want to bring some of the luxuries from home, a foldable bathtub gives you that option. Plus, if you or a relative are recovering from an illness or surgery, a portable bathtub next to their bed makes it easier to bathe without all the hassle.
How To Choose the Best Portable Bathtub
There are so many factors that make up the perfect portable bathtub, but what are the crucial elements you should be looking for?
Let’s Talk About the Shape
Not all shapes suit all people. Most portable bathtubs are barrel-shaped, so you can immerse yourself in the water. So, do you want a deep soak or to stretch your legs? If you want a deep soak, a cylinder-shaped bathtub is just fine, but you are restricted with legroom.
Just bear in mind that getting into a deep bathtub is not that easy, especially if you are recovering from a medical procedure or you have elderly relatives who have mobility issues.
If stretching your legs is a priority, look for a rectangular bathtub, but be sure to check the dimensions because even then they can be pretty small.
If the tub is going inside your shower cubicle, check the measurements to see that it fits. It is more likely you will need a barrel-shaped model for the shower unless you have a super-luxury enclosure that is big enough.
What Do You Put in the Water?
Whatever additive you pour in the water will likely penetrate the bathtub lining. Bubble baths and soap are the biggest culprits, so check with the manufacturer before adding them.
Plus, soap suds make the floor and sides of the bathtub slippery. Epsom salts are generally okay, but for soapy bubbles, maybe consider a bath liner.
Check the Drainage
Once you get the water in, you have to get it out. The tub will be very heavy when it is full, so maneuvering it is impossible. Some tubs drain from the button, but if you are emptying it into a shower tray, be careful it doesn’t overwhelm the pipes and cause flooding.
Tubs with side taps located at the base are more convenient, especially those that allow you to connect an extension pipe to reach a nearby outlet.
Let’s Talk About the Material
Most of the bathtubs featured are made from 3 layers of material, with PVC or polypropylene being the most common. Check that your favorite tub is BPA-free. It means that the plastic is free of Bisphenol A, a compound that can damage the human body and cause serious side effects and diseases.
It was banned in 11 states in the USA in 2012, and since then, manufacturers have removed it from their products.
The Best Portable Bathtubs of 2021
We chose the 7 top-performing bathtubs for usability, price, construction, and quality.
W WEYLAN TEC Foldable Bathtub for Toddlers
If you want a foldable bathtub that is suitable for toddlers, twins and even petite adults, this model hits the mark. It is constructed from polypropylene and TPS, so it is durable and foldable and yet is BPA-free.
You also get superior heat insulation to keep the water hotter for longer and a non-slip rib to stop falls in the bathtub. The material has been tested to be used up to 15,000 times before you experience any defects. That’s a lot of bathing.
This tub folds almost flat, so you can pack it in the car and take it with you for family holidays or overnight stops. It only weighs 14.55 pounds when folded and empty, so it is lightweight too. And thanks to the slimline design, it stores away easily too.
- Suitable for toddlers, twins, and petite adults.
- It folds almost entirely flat, making it easier to store and transport.
- The durable PP and TPE material are BPA-free, which is ideal for children.
- It can be used up to 15,000 times before you notice any defects with the material.
- Not suitable for larger adults, which restricts the use.
- It costs a lot compared to other portable bathtubs.
|Dimensions (inches)||37.8 x 22.83 x 3.94|
|Material||PP and TPE|
|Suitable for||Toddlers and small adults|
G Ganen Unisex Foldable 3-Layer PVC Spa Bathtub
This is a barrel-shaped portable tub, enabling the user to immerse themselves in water up to the shoulders. While it may not be as comfortable as other bathtubs, it is an excellent portable option.
It stands almost 30 inches tall and 30 inches in width, so it only fits one person at a time, but it is super-lightweight, at just 6.29 pounds. You also get 3-layers of high-quality materials, consisting of 2 layers of PVC and a layer of mesh cloth.
The rim is inflatable for added comfort, and the drain tap is detachable, and you can extend the drain reach to about 30 inches, so you drain the water into an outlet.
The company claims you can fit two adults in this tub, but looking at the dimensions, that’s stretching it a bit. On the plus side, it is cheaper than other models to feature, especially the W WEYLAN TEC model.
- Its super-lightweight design means it weighs just 6.29 pounds.
- The tub is deep, at 30 inches, which means you can immerse your entire body in the water.
- You get 3-layers of materials, including 2 PVC and a mesh foam layer.
- It has an Inflatable rim for added comfort.
- The barrel shape is awkward for some to enter and exit the tub.
- Not as comfortable as some models because you need to sit cross-legged.
|Dimensions (inches)||29.5 x 29.5 x 33.46|
LUCKUP Portable Freestanding Bathtub
Like the G Ganen model, this one has 3 layers of material. You get a layer of insulating and wear-resistant flocking fabric, a layer of reinforced cotton, followed by a waterproof coating of PVC.
This bathtub measures just 27.5 x 7.87 x 1.97 inches when folded, making it a breeze to store away and transport in the car. It holds a maximum of 120 liters of water, or about 26 gallons, which is more than enough for an average-sized adult to immerse themselves up to the shoulders.
This model has a bottom drain as well as a side drain tap, so you can choose, plus you get a tubular high-support frame with thickened PVC brackets.
Thanks to his portable bathtub’s dimensions, it is the ideal model to fit into your shower enclosure to turn it into a bath, and because one of the drain valves is on the base, you can let the water flow down the shower drain.
The company doesn’t state whether this material is BPA-free, which is something that will require further investigation before you purchase.
- It only weighs 4.69 pounds, making it one of the lightest bathtubs on the market.
- You get 3 layers of material, including insulating flocking and waterproof PVC.
- It holds over 26 gallons of water, so it’s ideal for adult use.
- It folds away to make it easier to store and transport in the car.
- The barrel shape is awkward for some to enter and exit the tub.
- Not suitable for children because it is too deep
|Dimensions (inches)||27.6 x 27.6|
CO-Z Inflatable Adult Bathtub
This bathtub is different, because unlike those features so far, where you have to sit in a barrel-shaped tub, this one is more traditional in shape. You can lay down and soak as you would in your bathtub at home.
It is entirely inflatable, which means that it should be lightweight when deflated and take up minimal storage space. For that reason, it also scores highly for portability and maneuverability, plus erecting it just takes a pump rather than joining poles and brackets.
You get a covered bathing area to protect your modesty, a cup holder, inflatable headrest, and pillow, plus a bottom and side drain valve to empty faster. It only takes 3 minutes to erect, thanks to the included electric pump. The only issue is it is rated at 110 volts, so it won’t plug into your 12V car socket.
The material is eco-friendly PVC, which is non-toxic, so it is safe for all the family.
- It’s made from eco-friendly PVC, which is non-toxic, so won’t pose any threat to the family.
- It’s lightweight and easy to store and transport.
- You get a 110V electric pump, which inflates the bath in 3 minutes flat.
- No construction is needed. Just attach the pump, and you are done.
- It’s better suited to adults because of the covered bathing area.
- Inflatable baths are not as durable because they develop punctures.
|Dimensions (inches)||63 x 33 x 25|
PPBathtub XL Inflatable Bathtub
If you like sharing your soak under the stars on the campsite, this 2-person inflatable tub is the ideal choice. You get a backrest at both ends, and because it is inflatable, it deflates to a tiny size, making it suitable for the trunk of the car or for storing under a cabinet in the home.
It has 2 cup holders to keep your beers steady and a ridged floor with anti-slip qualities. Like the other inflatable model, it comes with an electric pump, so inflating it should be a breeze. The drain plug is on the bottom, but you get a pipe that extends the reach to the nearest outlet.
The downside with this bathtub is the size. You might struggle to find space for it indoors. On the plus side, it does double-up as a kid’s summer pool.
The other black mark against this tub is the company doesn’t state whether it is BPA-free plastic. This is crucial for peace of mind, especially if you have kids.
- It fits 2 adults with ease, making a great sociable space.
- It doubles up as a kid’s summer pool on hot days.
- You get an electric pump to make inflating it easier.
- It packs down to a small size for better storage and portability.
- It takes up a lot of space, so you might struggle to inflate it indoors.
- There is a lack of clarity about whether the material is BPA-free.
|Dimensions (inches)||62.99 x 47.24 x 23.62|
|Suitable for||2 Adults|
MESINURS Medical Inflatable Bathtub
When you are looking after elderly relatives, getting them into the bathtub can be a challenge. This inflatable model lies entirely flat so that you can store it under the mattress and the water filling comes courtesy of a bag that hangs from an IV post, the bed frame, or another mount,
It also doubles as a portable shower, so when your uncle or aunt are settled in the bath, you can bathe them in gentle water. This system removes the need for bed or sponge baths, and it turns a bed into a bathtub, meaning they never need to leave their room to stay clean.
It’s why it is the clear winner as a bathtub for elderly, infirm, bedridden, and disabled relatives.
- It fits under existing mattresses, lying entirely flat.
- You inflate it with a foot pump and it fills via a bag attached to an IV pole, the bed frame or another mount.
- It allows you to wash and shower in the comfort of your room.
- Ideal for the infirm, bedridden, disabled, and mobility-challenged.
- Only suitable for a specific audience, making it unsuitable for everyone else.
- Expensive compared to other inflatable bathtubs to feature.
|Dimensions (inches)||18.27 x 9.21 x 6.61|
|Suitable for||Elderly, infirm, disabled and bedridden|
KELIXU Foldable Portable Bathtub
Nothing quite beats bringing the creature comforts from home when you are out in the back and beyond. This barrel-shaped bathtub has 4 layers, including an outer suede material, a thermal coating and pearl cotton, plus a layer of internal PVC to make it waterproof.
You also get strong support poles and a detachable drain valve, plus a simple folding action to easily transport or store it away.
Unfolded, it measures 27.6 inches by 27.6 inches. When folded away, it only measures 27.6 x 7.87 x 1.97 inches. This model packs down and quickly assembles when you reach your destination.
The maker claims the material is safe, but they don’t go into detail about whether that means BPA-free or non-toxic. Sometimes a little bit of clarity makes you feel more confident when buying.
On the plus side, this tub is incredible value for money, so if you are making your first portable bathtub purchase, this is a wise investment.
- It folds down for easy storage and portability.
- You get 4 layers of material for increased insulation and durability.
- It has strong support poles and a detachable drain valve.
- The great price makes this an ideal entry-level portable tub.
- It’s only suitable for adults due to the depth of the bathtub.
|Dimensions (inches)||27.6 x 27.6|
|BPA-free||Only stated as “safe”|
|W WEYLAN TEC Foldable Bathtub for Toddlers||Best for Toddlers||14.55 lbs||37.8″ x 22.83″ x 3.94″||PP & TPE||Foldable||Toddlers & small adults||Yes||$$$$||1-year|
|G Ganen Unisex Foldable 3-Layer PVC Spa Bathtub||Best Foldable||6.29 lbs||29.5″ x 29.5″ x 33.46″||PVC||Foldable||Adults||Yes||$$||Not stated|
|LUCKUP Portable Freestanding Bathtub||Best for Adults||4.69 lbs||27.6″ x 27.6″||PVC||Foldable||Adults||Not stated||$$||1-year|
|CO-Z Inflatable Adult Bathtub||Best Inflatable||7.48 lbs||63″ x 33″ x 25″||PVC||Inflatable||Adults||Non-toxic||$$$||1-year|
|PPBathtub XL Inflatable Bathtub||Best for Couples||9.04 lbs||62.99″ x 47.24″ x 23.62″||PVC||Inflatable||2 Adults||Not stated||$$$$||Not stated|
|MESINURS Medical Inflatable Bathtub||Best for Elderly||6.95 lbs||18.27″ x 9.21″ x 6.61″||PVC||Inflatable||Elderly, infirm, disabled & bedridden||Not stated||$$$$$||Not stated|
|KELIXU Foldable Portable Bathtub||Best for Camping||6.54 lbs||27.6″ x 27.6″||PVC||Foldable||Adults||Only stated as “safe”||$$||Not stated|
How To Drain a Portable Bathtub
Getting water in is easy, but getting it out is another conversation. Some have drain holes in the base that allow you to open a valve, and the water runs out. This is great for when you are camping, and the tub sits on the grass, but not effective in a shower enclosure.
Other models have a drain tap on the side near the base, so the principle is the same; open the tap and let the water run free. If you need to reach a drain or other outlet, some come with extendable pipes you can attach to increase the drainage span.
Just remember that when you are draining the tub using a side tap, there will always be a small amount of water you will need to tip out of the tub.