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So you are thinking about cleaning those stuffed toys in your home? Stuffed animals can be great since they not only decorate your home but are also excellent playmates for kids.
However, once they get dusty, they can cause harbor bacteria, lice, and other varmints. Are you wondering how to clean them?
3 Simple Methods To Wash Stuffed Animals
Maybe you don’t know the detergents to use or after how long you should wash them.
In this post, we will show you how to wash stuffed animals with simple and clear steps. There are various ways of cleaning stuffed animals.
However, the state of each toy determines how it will be washed. For example, if a toy is old and fragile, you cannot wash it using a washing machine. Let’s analyze each washing method.
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Method 1: Cleaning gently
Here is how you can gently clean toys that need extra care.
(i) Sterilizing toys
Some toys are too delicate to be cleaned with other methods. Those toys that children play with need extra care while washing.
The truth is that most kids put toys in their mouth while playing with them. You might need to sterilize them first.
The best way is putting them in hot water in case they cannot withstand other vigorous methods of cleaning them
(ii) Get rid of odor and dust
This step is not a must, but it can help you clean them. However, if you have toys that need extra gentle care, it would be the best way to clean them.
Below are steps of removing dust from your stuffed animals.
- You can remove odor from the toy by putting in inside a paper bag that has baking soda.
- Coat the toy by closing the bag and shaking it.
- Allow it to stay that way for half an hour then use a dry towel to brush away the baking soda.
- Wet a piece of cloth with water and rinse it. Use it to wipe the dust from the toy.
- Use dilute soapy water
You can use mild wool and baby shampoo to clean the soft fur of your toys. Wet the wool with soapy water then dab it on the dirty areas of the toy. Allow it to dry.
- Dampen a clean cloth
Take a clean piece of cloth and dampen it, then remove excess water from it.
- Wipe the toy
Wipe the toy and focus on dirty places. Always wet and wring the piece of cloth as you clean so that it can stay moisturized and will not reapply dirt to the toy.
- Rinse the toy by wiping it with clean water. This is the final step of cleaning it.
- Dry your stuffed animal gently with a towel
- Now that you have cleaned your toy dry it with a clean towel.
- Allow the toy to air dry
Allow the toy to dry in a well-ventilated place that has direct sunlight, if possible.
Method 2: Using a washing machine
You can use a washing machine to wash stuffed animals. However, you need to check on the following aspects first before using a washing machine.
Make sure that the toy is suitable to be washed by a washing machine first, as some are too delicate.
Which stuffed animals can’t be put on the washing machine?
- Vintage or antique toys, as they are very delicate
- Those with a sound box or music box
- Stuffed animals with delicate features
- Toys which are threadbare or have rips
Washing the stuffed animal
After finding out the toy can be cleaned with this method, here is how you can do it.
(i) Separate removable parts
There are some removable parts of the toy that can be washed separately. This is because they might get loose after washing.
Make sure you remove things like clothes and bows, among other accessories, and clean them alone.
(ii) Put the stuffed animal in a pillowcase or a mesh
You now need to get a pillowcase or a nylon mesh that can accommodate the toy and put it inside. It should have enough space to move within the container.
(iii) Use some yarn or twine to tie the open end of the pillowcase.
This should help to close the pillowcase firmly so that the stuffed animal will not fall out.
(iv) Put the pillowcase inside the washer.
After completing the tie, place the pillowcase in the washer and set the water to a warm setting.
(v) Wash it gently
You should wash the toy in a gentle cycle.
(vi) Remove it from the washer
After the washing cycle, remove it from the machine.
Dry the stuffed animal gently. You can put it in the porch away from direct sunlight or in the laundry to drip-dry it. Avoid placing it in the dryer, as the synthetic elements might melt.
(viii) Finger-sweep the nap or brush it once it is dry
The stuffed animal will likely be misshapen after washing. With a baby brush or your fingers, you can return it into its original form.
Method 3: Using your hands
You can as well use your hands to wash stuffed animals. However, you should keep an eye on its delicate areas first.
Washing with your hands tends to be safer than any other method. Keep in mind that you cannot submerge toys with electrical components that can’t be removed.
You also avoid submerging leather toys and those with paper stiffeners in water. Below are the steps.
- Steep the toy in water and squeeze it. Repeat this step three times
- Add a soft detergent to the water, then stir to form suds
- Scrub the toy with a clean, soft toothbrush as you squeeze it periodically to remove dirt
- Squeeze the toy, then drip-dry it.
- Hang it to dry for a few days
Washing your stuffed toys shouldn’t be stressful anymore. There are various ways of cleaning them. We have analyzed three of them.
You can use your hands, a machine, or use the gentle cleaning method. However, you should first observe whether the toy is eligible for the cleaning method.
Remember, some toys are too delicate and need a gentle cleaning method. Others can’t be submerged in water. Depending on the condition of your stuffed animal, make the right choice.