In my nine years of experience living with a kid-friendly bathroom and tub, I’ve developed some very strong opinions about what’s good and bad in bath toys. Allow me to share four lessons with you.
- Your squirty toys areÂ nasty, mildewy, and gross.Â I’m sure there’s some recipe for regularly cleaning with bleach and then making them baby-safe again, but c’mon! I say: buy ’em cheap and replace them often.
- That fishing toy is fun and will break within a week. We have bits of various fishing toys that still get play, but man I wish the whole rod ‘n reel still worked.
- You gotta drain. The boon frog is a popular solution because it scoops up sudsy toys and hangs them from the shower wall allowing full drainage. People love it. We use a plasticky holey basket for the same effect without the wall sticking.
- Hard plastic toys are your friend. We have a Tomy dolphin musical toy that is going strong without incident for NINE YEARS. Whut?! My conclusion is that the less porous material invites less bacteria.
Here are my top picks for bath toys that will last. Hope you like ’em.
- Tomy musical dolphins. Did you hear me before? We’ve had these in good shape for nine years of regular use in the tub. About $20.
- Sassy squirty toys. Buy them and replace them as needed. More than 400 very happy reviewers on amazon. Get them for less than $9. These are cute, but I’m not brand loyal.
- Nuby splash stacking cups. Scoop suds, pour, splash, repeat. Only $4 but your regular cups will also work.
- Munchkin white hot duck. This non-squirty floating rubber ducky will help rookie parents to know when the water is too hot. About $2.50 for a toy and safety indicator.
- Alex magnetic floaty boats. Includes tugboat, fishing boat and speedboat that you can link up in any combination. 3 boats for $9, not bad.
- Green Toys tugboatÂ or submarine. We love these recycled plastic toy boats in and out of the tub. A few different color combinations, about $9.
- A containment device like the Boon Frog PodÂ or OXO tot bath toy bin so you can scoop and drain. The frog is about $30 and the OXO doohickie is $16 and doesn’t scream “A kid took over my bathroom!”
4 Honorable mentions:
I haven’t tried these on my family of testersÂ but they caught my attention because they’re cute, clever, and well-reviewed. Let me know what you think.
- Yookidoo Flow ‘N’ Fill Spout. Holy cuteness! Too bad I don’t like baths for myself because I would totally play with this.
- Alex bathtime hoop toss. A favorite among hundreds. Is it really that good?
- Alex water flutes. They look like fun but I’d need some real toddler feedback to be sure.
- Nuby octopus ring toss. So cute, right?
Did I miss your favorite? Do tell in the comments.
PS I’m opposed to bath toys like crayons that make you more messy, so don’t even.