How to clean baby toys safely – Stuffed, rubber, plastic & more

We all know that we shouldn’t put dirty objects into our mouths because they may carry bacteria that could make us sick. Unfortunately, curious babies and toddlers – who are busy using their mouths to discover the world around them – don’t understand this rule, and aren’t great at following it. This is why knowing how to clean baby toys safely is important for keeping your little ones safe.

There are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to keeping your baby’s toys squeaky-clean. Here are our tips for cleaning baby toys safely.

Schedule regular cleans every two weeks

While our adult immune systems can fight off most germs, babies are still developing theirs. Regular cleaning of all their favourite toys will help to keep them germ-free. 

We suggest cleaning baby toys every two weeks, or more frequently if:

  • your baby or toddler is sick, or has an infection;
  • the toys are shared with other kids;
  • you have a pet, who may have licked or bitten the toys;
  • your baby or toddler has allergies;
  • the toys can retain a lot of bacteria, such as stuffed toys.

Regular cleaning is important, but to get rid of all bacteria, every clean must cover those hard-to-reach places. This is why basic wipes often won’t do the trick. 

Here are our tips for choosing the right products to clean, as well as instructions on how to clean baby toys safely. You won’t even need to visit the shops: most of these are home recipes!

Cleaning plastic and rubber baby toys: Vinegar and dishwashing liquid

Mix equal parts white vinegar and warm water before adding a few drops of dishwashing liquid. Pour the solution into a spray bottle and spray the toys, leaving the liquid on for at least a few minutes. Alternatively, put the solution in a large bowl or container and soak the toys for a few minutes.

Then, use a scrubbing brush to work the solution into every inch of the toy and lift dirt, grime and bacteria before leaving the toys to dry.

How to clean fabric, soft and stuffed toys: Baking soda

Baking soda is known to be effective in cleaning carpet stains, but did you know it can also clean baby toys? Soft toys can retain a lot of bacteria, and can easily fade or start to smell without regular cleaning. To remove stains from stuffed toys, create a paste with a pinch of baking soda and water, put on a toothbrush and rub gently. Then, simply leave to dry and dust or vacuum off the powder.

Or, to make stuffed toys look and smell fresher, lay them on a towel and sprinkle baking soda over the top until they’re totally covered and leave for 15 minutes. Do both sides then dust or vacuum off.

Cleaning rubber, plastic, wood or electric baby toys: Hand sanitiser or rubbing alcohol

We’re all well acquainted with hand sanitiser after 2020. So if looking for a way to disinfect baby toys, look no further! Rub thoroughly over the toy and leave for at least 30 seconds. Ensure you use a toothbrush to reach finicky places, and rinse thoroughly with water to remove the solution afterwards.

Germs are often closer than we think, but with these tips, you can keep them far away from your baby!