There’s nothing quite like watching your little one play with their toys. So adorable! The layer of saliva and snot sitting on top of those toys, though? Not so much. But you love your little’un to bits, so you’ve just gotta love their mess too – whichever end it comes out of!
You know that the gross stuff is really just their sticky seal of approval for how much they love the toy, but it’s also important to know how to clean teething toys, trucks, trains and teddy bears properly. And we’ll show you how right now.
How to clean baby toys – the why of it
Just because you’re ok with their gloopy goo all over their toys (you might even go as far as to say you love it), you know that learning how to sanitise baby toys is important. But why is that? Well, it’s because of bacteria – the bad kind!
Toys pick up all sorts of grime off the floor, your pets and other surfaces. Not to mention the drool and other gloop that comes direct from your baby’s mouth. As a new parent you might be unsure about how to clean baby bath toys, teething toys, soft toys… etc. But once you’ve got a method in place, you can keep them in the best possible shape and help stop your little one getting poorly from playtime.
How to disinfect toys
When it comes to figuring out how to sanitise baby toys you’ve got two main types to consider. 1) Snuggly soft toys. 2) Those plastic toys that they can really bite down on. While the intention is the same – rid them of snotty gloop – the methods are slightly different. Whether it’s discovering how to clean teething toys made of the soft stuff or how to clean baby bath toys made of the harder stuff, it’s an easy but important task.
How to clean soft baby toys
Fabric toys can very quickly become grimy, especially the ones they grow really attached to. Although it can be hard to extract a favourite soft toy from the clutches of your loving bub – it’s probably best to leave it until they’re asleep – it’s super important to make sure that all that lovely gloop doesn’t turn the toy into a bacteria-fest.
In terms of knowing how to clean soft baby toys, there may well be a label that’ll point you in the right direction. If they can go in the washing machine, great! If not, you can still get them clean with the following process:
- Grab a bowl or bucket of warm/hot water and squirt a few drops of washing up liquid in.
- With a cloth or sponge, gently work the solution into the cuddly toy. Alternatively, if the toy is really grubby, you can submerge it in the water and give it a good massage. Add a cup of white vinegar to help deal with bacteria, but do a spot-check first on a small, discrete area of the toy to check the vinegar doesn’t affect the toy’s colour.
- Rinse really well and gently squeeze until the water runs clear, then leave to dry naturally. Ideally in the sun – but again, watch out for discolouring.
How to clean and disinfect toys made of plastic
With plastic toys you can employ the same method, but you have a couple of other options too, including:
- Hot washing them clean in the dishwasher.
- Using disinfectant cleaners. Always follow the instructions.
- With bath toys, wash in a solution of hot water and soap. There’s often a little hole, which will take in water. Particularly with the ‘fun’ squeezy ones. The key with these is on-going and swift cleaning – i.e. make sure the water is fully squeezed out when they’re used. If you see black flakes coming out, it’s time to buy a new one. If the water is clean when you squeeze it out, it’s survived… until the next bathtime, at least.
After using any of the above methods, you can then:
- Use a soft brush to get into all the nooks and crannies.
- Rinse thoroughly. This goes for all toys, but if you’re cleaning teething toys, be ultra careful to thoroughly rinse them clean, whichever cleaning method you’ve used.
- Dry completely.
Another top tip is to act quickly, whether you’re cleaning soft or plastic toys. And if they spit up on a toy, that’s an immediate response job.
Tip: You need something absorbent and super strong even when wet when dealing with baby goo on toys. Plenty kitchen towel is more than up to the task of wiping off snot and dribble without breaking down and causing even more mess... on the toy, the floor and on your hands. Phew.
That’s it! Now that you know how to clean baby toys there’s no need to worry. After all, you love watching them have fun, grow and goo!