Babies put toys up by their faces, in their mouth, and up their noses, so it is super important to keep them clean! I would recommend having a routine to clean them because otherwise, it is super easy to forget. I would recommend cleaning the toys every couple of weeks, but also anytime your little one has had a playdate where the other baby might have been sticking toys in their mouth. You will also want to disinfect anytime that any family or friends that you spend time with regularly are sick.
How to Clean Baby Toys
The Little Stuff
Take the easy route if you can! For little toys that have no batteries, I would recommend just putting them in the dishwasher. You can just add a couple of drops of dish soap and run a quick cycle with hot water.
Rinse your baby’s toys with soapy water in your sink until the water runs clear to clean them. Fill a 1-gallon bucket with water (you can find these at hardware stores super cheap and they will come in handy for cleaning many things with this same method!) and 2 tablespoons of bleach. Let the toys sit in the bleach solution for a couple of minutes and then set them out to air dry. This second step will do the disinfecting!
Cleaning Bigger Toys
Your baby is probably not putting bigger toys, like a walker or a play piano, in their mouth quite as often. However, it is still super important to clean toys like this off. You can rinse use the bucket method above for toys without batteries, but you will need a different method for everything else. My recommendation for toys with batteries is to use one of the disinfecting wipes we have listed below to simply wipe the toys down.
Plush and Fabric Toys
You will definitely need to know how to clean plush and fabric toys, especially if your baby becomes attached to Mr. Bunny or Teddy and cannot sleep without him. Luckily, you can just throw these toys in the wash with a little soap and hot water. They come out looking as good as new (at least for the first year or so)! If the toy is getting worn down or seems fragile, I would stick to hang drying. As for newer toys, they can be tossed right into the dryer. It also helps to throw some tennis balls in along with the plush toys to keep the inner stuffing fluffed up all around.
Safe Cleaners to Use on Your Toys
Obviously, you want everything in your home to be clean and disinfected, but when there’s a baby around you also want to use safe nontoxic products. Here are some of our favorite soaps, wipes, and detergents to aid you in cleaning your baby’s toys.
This plant-derived clean is tough on food and grease, as well as any grime that might end up on toys. It comes in 3 different scents, all naturally derived, or a scent-free option.
Another popular brand that makes safe products for babies is Babyganics. This foaming dish soap can be used to clean your bottles as well as dishes and toys. It is plant-based, free of toxins, and has been tested by both pediatricians and dermatologists.
Elysium is another soap that can be used to clean your baby’s toys. It is antibacterial and organic, as well as being completely free of parabens, alcohol, phthalates, and sulfates just like the other soaps on this list. This soap is also vegan if we have any mamas out there who are looking for that!
You need all kinds of wipes with little ones in the house! These Clorox Free and Clear are perfect for wiping down both big and small toys. You can also use them on your counters, high chair, car seats, and more. They do not have any bleach and are fragrance-free.
Dreft also makes great cleaning wipes that are safe to use around little ones. These are very similar to the Clorox Free and Clear above, but they are not fragrance-free. They have a gentle, light scent.
As for the baby toys you will be tossing in the laundry, Babyganics 3X Baby Laundry Detergent works great to clean them! It is fragrance-free and formulated from plant-derived ingredients. It is totally safe for your baby, nonallergenic, and has been tested by dermatologists. However, it still has good stain-fighting power!
The Honest Company also makes a great fragrance-free laundry detergent that you can use to clean toys in your washing machine. Just like Babyganics, it is hypoallergenic and made of plant-derived ingredients while still providing stain-fighting power.
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