How to Clean Bath Toys – Get Rid of Mold and Bacteria

Bath toys are kids’ cute little companions, and they make their bathing sessions much more enjoyable, fun, and easier for parents. However, similar to the bathroom walls, these toys are at risk of growing mold and can be potentially harmful to kids, so today, we are going to take a look at how to clean bath toys.

Bathwater can be a source of various germs, so cleaning kids’ bath toys properly is a must. Children love to put these toys in their mouths, and initially, you will likely think that this is not a problem, but long-term, it can be the cause of diseases and very dangerous. Hygiene is very important, so let us start with tips and tricks for the thorough disinfection of bath toys.

Why Are Moldy Bath Toys Harmful?

mold build up

Before we start talking about effective methods to clean bath toys, let us walk you through why it is so important and why moldy toys can be harmful to your child’s health. Built-up mold and germs on toys are very dangerous for people of all ages but especially for kids that have a weak immune system.

Fungi and bacteria can build up on these toys and cause respiratory problems, allergies, and various other issues. A lot of these bacteria are associated with human infections, so whenever you notice this type of build-up, remove it as fast as you can.

How to Prevent Mold Build-Up?

how to clean bath toys and to prevent mold

If you did not notice any mold on toys so far, this is a great piece of news, but you are not yet safe and should take the necessary precautions to prevent it from forming. Start by squeezing as much water as you can from them after each bath and setting them aside on the spot where they can dry quickly.

Turning the bathroom exhaust on for twenty to thirty minutes after each bath will really help, as it will draw humidity from the bathroom more effectively and help toys dry much faster. The mold generally forms inside the toys, where it is much harder to spot, thus making it more dangerous.

As children love to squeeze the water out of bath toys’ holes, traces of mold might get into the water, so it is of the essence to dry these toys appropriately after each bath your child takes.

Effective Ways of Cleaning Bathroom Toys

Use the Bleach


Using diluted bleach is one of the most effective ways to get rid of mold and bacteria that come alongside. To get the best effect and fully disinfect toys with bleach, use a 1:10 ratio and fill all places on which the water can penetrate inside the toy.

After the disinfection process, make sure to drain the toy carefully in order to avoid your child ingesting chemicals from the bleach mixture before the next bath. Rinse repeatedly and let the toy dry completely.

Use the Vinegar

vinegar disinfectant

In case you do not like to use bleach and consider that its chemicals are too harmful, vinegar is a great alternative for getting rid of mold and bacteria. Although it is a bit hard on the nose, it is nothing compared to bleach. Use the vinegar at its full strength as it is weaker than bleach. It is also important to soak the toy fully to get the best effect.

Use the Dishwasher

cleaning bath toys in dishwasher

In case your day-to-day schedule is packed, and you do not have time to clean the bath toys thoroughly, you can put them in the dishwasher. It is an easier and quicker solution and only requires you to put the toys in the top rack in the dishwasher, run the hot cycle, and you are good to go. However, you should check the materials used in the manufacturing process of the toy since some of them are not compatible with dishwashers.

Boil the Toys in Hot Water

boiling toys in hot water

Boiling toys in hot water is a rather effective way to get rid of harmful build-ups. It is a method that you can use on hard plastic toys and, at the same time, is the best way to clean them thoroughly from the inside. Pour some water into the pot, get it boiling, add toys carefully and keep them inside for a couple of minutes. After you are done, take the toys out and put them in the sun or some other place where they can dry thoroughly.

Use Disinfectant Wipes

disinfecting wipes

As long as the toy you are cleaning does not have a hole in which the water can pour in, use the disinfectant wipes. These wipes can also prevent mold build-up and keep the toys sparkling and clean. To keep the cleaning with wipes effective, you should wipe down toys after each bathing session.

Use Hydrogen Peroxide

hydrogen peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is a disinfectant that is completely non-toxic, anti-fungal, and gets rid of mold effectively. This is another fast solution for cleaning hard toys, as you only need to spray 50/50 water and hydrogen peroxide and wait for ten or fifteen minutes before rinsing and drying.

Use Tea Tree Oil

tea tree oil

This is a somewhat unusual but very effective and natural way of getting rid of mold and harmful bacteria. All you need to do is add around ten drops of tea tree oil to a quart of water and spray on the toy. Afterward, wipe it and put it away on the spot where it can dry completely.

Use Vodka or Some Other Strong Spirit

vodka for cleaning

It should not come as a surprise that vodka and strong spirits can get rid of harmful bacteria, as they are natural disinfectants. To get the best effect, pour vodka into a spray bottle and spritz it on the toys. Afterward, make sure to remove any residue with a cloth or dry tissue, rinse, wipe and dry.

How Often Should I Clean Bath Toys?

To effectively keep mold, mildew, or any type of harmful bacteria at bay, you should clean your child’s toys at least once a week. In case you cannot get rid of mildew after using all the methods we have listed above, it is much smarter to throw the toy away and avoid unnecessary health risks.

What Is the Most Effective Way to Clean Foam Bath Toys?

foam bath toys

Cleaning foam bath toys is a rather simple task, and it is much easier to clean them than plastic or rubber ones. Simply wash them with soap and water, squeeze all the soap out, and let them dry. Also, make sure to do this after each bath. You can also clean them using a dishwasher or washing machine.

Final Words

There are numerous productive ways to get rid of mold. In order to make this whole process much easier, it is important to prevent it from forming in the first place. So do not be lazy; clean the toys after each bath, as it will save you some extra time and keep your child happy, clean, and healthy.

Look for natural disinfectants to ensure the toys are safe to use after you end cleaning them up, but if you choose some chemical-rich disinfectant, rinse the toy repeatedly after you clean it. We hope you will find our tips helpful and use some of our methods, as your child’s health is the most important thing.