Tips on Telling Newborn Twins Apart

By Susan Revermann
Though they're cute, identical outfits make telling newborn twins apart more difficult.
Though they're cute, identical outfits make telling newborn twins apart more difficult.

Although each of your newborn twins is wonderful in his own distinct way, it can be hard to tell them apart at first as you get to know them. Until you can tell those little ones apart with just one glance, you may have to resort to other identifying methods to help you out. Once you remove this little parenting hurdle, you can focus on more important aspects of raising twins, like convincing them to let you get some sleep.

Identifying Marks

Part of getting to know your babies is checking over their little bodies. Look at each of your twins and take note of any identifying marks, such as birthmarks. Some newborns have a small red birthmark called nevus simplex, also known as a stork bite or salmon patch. According to MedlinePlus, these red blotches occur in one-third of all newborns. These are usually temporary, commonly disappearing by 18 months, but they can help you identify your newborns.

Weight Difference

It is unlikely that your twins had the exact same weight when they were born. This weight difference may be small and hard to notice just by looking at them or the difference may be apparent to the naked eye. If your twins are the latter, this gives you an advantage in telling the twins apart in the early weeks. Just look at the hospital records to double check which baby weighed more at birth.

Hospital Bands

The neonatal staff at the hospital is trained to run through a certain protocol when a baby is born, including attaching an identification band to the baby soon after birth. These hospital bands can help you distinguish which is Baby A and which is Baby B. Keep these hospital bands on your baby as long as you can to help you tell the newborn babies apart. Once you’re home and find another means of distinguishing those babies apart, or the bracelets start to get too small, simply snip the bands off with scissors.

Nail Polish

You can also use fingernail polish on your babies’ nails to make a distinguishing mark. Look for a non-toxic, hypoallergenic, water-based nail polish for this purpose. You could use different colors on each baby or only use the polish on one of them. This can be done on those tiny fingernails or toenails. Even if your little ones are boys, you can find “manlier” colors, such as blue and green, to use.


You can also assign a certain color of clothing to each baby. For instance, if you have twin girls, one can have yellow and the other pink. Boys can use blue, gray or green. If you always dress each baby in that specific color, you will know just by a glance which baby is which. Just make sure to dress each at separate times and tell others to do the same.