All About Sanitizing Bath Toys Naturally
Your little one loves to play with bath toys, and since they are played within the bathtub, around bath bubbles and water, there is no need to clean them, right? Wrong! The bathtub can be the perfect environment for fungus and mold to grow.
Once the water drains and the toys sit with warm water still inside, the bacteria is just waiting to grow. But you do not want to clean your child’s bath toys with harmful chemicals that not only sanitize, but leave harmful residue behind on the toys which can make your little one sick.
Your child’s bath toys should be cleaned at least once a month but can be done on a weekly basis as well, depending on how quickly mold or mildew accumulates in your home. There are some natural cleansers you can use to clean and sanitize the bath toys that won’t risk the health and safety of your child.
Natural ways to sanitize toys without harsh chemicals
Vinegar rinse/soak—this is the best natural way to sanitize your child’s bath toys, however, the vinegar can leave a strong odor behind. If you add a few drops of tea tree of lavender scented oils to the vinegar and water mixture it can take away the harsh vinegar smell.
Natural soaps– If there has been mildew or mold allowed to build up inside the bath toy, you can use a simple homemade mixture to clean it out. Use “three-quarters a cup of chlorine bleach to a gallon of warm water”—put this mixture in a large bucket and allow the toys to soak in it for several minutes. After the bath toys have soaked in the mixture, suck out all the water from within the toys and rinse in warm water; then allow them to dry in the natural sun-light.
Boiling the toys in a pot of water—One of the best ways to sterilize bath toys, (or any toys for that matter that don’t have hair or batteries) is to boil the toy(s) in a pot of water and let them air dry in the sunlight. Boiling water is the most natural way to remove bacteria from an object and no chemicals are needed. Just be sure if you are boiling your child’s toys, your child is not around. You don’t want a horrible accident to occur by the child trying to reach for the hot toys after they have come out of the water, or worse yet, while still in the hot water.
The dishwasher—As long as the bath toys are “dishwasher safe” they can be easily cleaned and sanitized by placing the toys in the dishwasher and running them through a normal wash cycle. Just ensure after the cycle is through you squeeze all remaining water out of the toys, if you don’t then mold growth can accumulate inside the toys and contaminate the bath water. The best way to wash your child’s bath toys in the dishwasher are to place them in a lingerie bag or some sort of dishwasher plastic box, this will ensure they stay together and the smaller parts don’t get lost within the mechanisms of the dishwasher should they come apart. Just use regular dishwashing detergent and the heat cycle to dry the toys.
Just washing in the dishwasher isn’t going to ensure the toys are sterilized, however. If your dishwasher has a sanitizing cycle, make sure you run the toys through this cycle as well just to make sure any germs (particularly in cold and flu season) have been disinfected from the toys.
Do-it-yourself sanitizing spray– An easy way to ensure your child’s bath toys and other toys are always sanitized is to make some “do-it-yourself sanitizing spray.” This spray you can keep on hand to spray the bath toys with after each use, in between weekly cleanings. It is very simple to make with many of the supplies you have in your home.
You will need 1- cup of distilled white vinegar; 1 cup of distilled water; and 30 drops of lavender essential oil—just combine all ingredients together in a large spray bottle, and you have yourself some sanitizing spray!
So now you have five ways you can sanitize your child’s toys and bath toys and keep him or her safe from harmful cleaning chemicals, as this is always a concern for new as well as existing mothers. Keeping our children safe from germs is a number one priority, whether it be playtime with other children or bath-time by themselves.