As a mother or father who bathes your baby, there comes the happy day when the little one is old enough to be aware and to play with toys even during the bath. This is usually the time when the question of how to clean baby bath toys comes up, and for good reason.
If you are wondering how to clean baby bath toys no matter what shape or kind they are in, this article will provide you with several efficient methods for cleaning them quite quickly, so that your baby can safely and joyfully enjoy playing with his or her toys.
Why Is It Important To Clean Baby Bath Toys Well?
The fact is that there can be numerous bacteria hiding inside these toys, which may lead to multiple ills.
Bath toys are usually made of rubber, plastic, or vinyl materials, and it’s likely that mold grows on them if they remain wet for too long, and even though mold is usually not dangerous in and of itself, the spores it releases may be the cause of some health issues.
How To Clean Baby Bath Toys In 4 Easy Steps
- Take them out of the bathwater and rinse the toys
Take all the toys out of the water. It’s very important to rinse them before cleaning. Otherwise, some soap that remains on them will not let the cleaning agent penetrate deep enough to be effective; for this reason, you should first rinse each toy under running lukewarm or cold water without scrubbing them with your hands (this is to avoid damaging them).
- Gently brush each toy separately
Using a toothbrush or dishwashing brush, dilute some liquid soap in lukewarm water and use a soft-bristled toothbrush or a regular dishwashing brush to clean the toys.
In this case, you should also rinse the toys thoroughly under running water before scrubbing them. You can use your bare hands to gently scrub them if it’s easier for you.
If the toys are made of any material except rubber, such as vinyl or plastic, you can also use a soft cloth dampened with hot water and some mild dishwashing liquid (avoid using this method on PVC toys as they may become deformed). After gently brushing each toy, you should rinse it one more time before letting it dry on an absorbent surface.
- Deep Clean Baby Bath Toys With Baking Soda And Vinegar
* This is a very efficient method for cleaning not only baby bath toys but also other items made of rubber, plastic, or vinyl.
After the toys are brushed and rinsed as described above, mix together in a bowl one cup of baking soda powder with 3/4 cup vinegar.
Mix well until you get a rather thick paste.
With your bare hands (or using latex gloves), rub the toys with the paste from top to bottom until they are entirely covered in it.
You can leave them in this mixture for a few minutes or if they need deeper cleaning, cover them and let them sit overnight.
- Rinse the toys thoroughly
Remove the toys from the solution and let them dry on a dish rack or an absorbent surface.
And that’s all there is to it!
For rubber only
Alternatively for step 3 above:
Rubber bath toys can be disinfected using rubbing alcohol.
* Do NOT use alcohol with other materials. If you aren’t sure, skip this step.
After gently brushing each toy, don’t rinse them again but soak them in a solution of 10% to 20% rubbing alcohol diluted with water for a few minutes, or put them in a container and pour rubbing alcohol inside so that the toys are covered with it.
How Often To Clean Baby Bath Toys?
First, apply your discretion: if you see that the toys have gotten dirty, if they are showing ANY signs of mold or mildew, then it’s time to clean them.
Otherwise, clean them thoroughly as described, every 2-3 weeks, and dry them thoroughly before allowing your baby to play with them again.
It is recommended that you clean them daily using the method below for between baths:
Cleaning Toys Between Baths
You should clean bath toys thoroughly between baths, as their exposure to water encourages the growth of bacteria.
The easiest way to do this is to set up a cleaning station between two bathroom sinks or even in your shower or tub—just make sure that you are always above the sink where your child will not be able to reach the toys or the cleaning solution.
For regular in-between baths, use dish soap solution (one part regular liquid dish soap and three parts water) or any cleaning solution or mixture recommended by your child’s pediatrician.
Avoid Harsh Cleaning Agents
Never use bleach (bleach is too harsh for a baby’s skin) or any cleaning solution containing bleach or ammonia – these are not appropriate for children.
Make sure that all the soap residue is rinsed off of the toys before putting them back in the bath. You do not want your baby to swim and wash in this solution, and certainly not to swallow even a tiny bit of it.
When you’re done cleaning your baby’s bath toys, put them in a mesh net bag and hang them in a well-aerated area, to avoid their coming in contact with water.