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DIY Natural Toy Cleaner

By Fredrica Syren:

Kids — they’re just so cute and so … so unhygienic at the same time. Now we’re getting into flu and cold season accompanied by pinworms and pink eye. There’s very little you can do to protect against it all, but one thing we can do is make sure to clean their toys on a regular basis to remove as many germs and bacteria as possible. Now let me make this very clear: I do believe our society is too scared of germs and tends to disinfect everything, and I believe that is wrong. Germs are good and build the immune system; however, since my kids play with their toys and have friends over who play with them, I do believe that cleaning toys occasionally is a good idea to reduce the chances of picking up bugs.

Using commercial cleaners is not an option. If you wish to avoid harmful chemicals such as bleach, ammonia or other solutions that could harm your kids, the question is how can you clean those drool-covered, crumb-embedded toys safely?

Of course there are safer cleaning products on the market these days, but there are super easy nontoxic methods of toy cleaning.

Spray:

A spray made with water and distilled vinegar is a great way to clean any hard surfaces. Just spray it onto, then wipe down the toy. I don’t like the smell of vinegar, so I add essential oils that not only smell good but also help clean the toys and kill germs. My favorite essential oils for cleaning include thieves, lemon, lavender  and Tea Tree oil.

  • 1 Cup Water
  • 1 Cup Distilled White Vinegar
  • 6 Drops of Essential Oils

Mix together in a repurposed spray bottle and either spray directly onto toys or spray onto a soft cloth to wipe things down.

Soaking:

Any plastic and water safe toys can be soaked in either warm water and vinegar or warm water and baking soda. Again, you can add some essential oils.

Boiling water:

Boiling water is known as a very simple way to kill germs. Naturally, it works only on water safe toys.

Laundry:

Soft toys like dolls and stuffed animals may harbor dust and dust mites. To get rid of the dust and mites, put the toys into the washing machine. Another method is to put the toys into an airtight bag, then stick the bag into the freezer for a few hours to kill any dust mites.

About Green Mom

Fredrica Syren, the author and founder of Green-Mom.com, was born in Sweden. Her mother was a classically trained chef who introduced her to many eclectic flavors and skills at a young age. Her mom’s passion for the outdoors and gardening planted the seed for her own love of nature and healthy eating. She received a degree in journalism and has worked as a print, Internet and broadcasting journalist for many years with big businesses within Europe and the United States. After her mom was diagnosed with terminal cancer and she with pre-cancer, Fredrica changed her career to become a full time yoga teacher and activist. A longtime world traveler, foodie and career woman, she was exposed to many facets of life, but nothing inspired her more than becoming a mom. After her first-born, Fredrica began a food blog focusing on local, seasonal, organic & vegetarian dishes. Years of food blogging developed into the cookbook Yummy in My Tummy, Healthy Cooking for the Whole Family. Upon the arrival of her second child, Fredrica founded Green-Mom.com. Her vision was to establish a site providing insight about gardening, home and personal care, baby & child, and of course food & nutrition. Green-Mom.com hosts many talented writers shedding light on ways to incorporate eco-friendly and nutritious practices for busy families. She is an advocate for organic, local and sustainable businesses. Fredrica hopes to inspire social change through her lifestyle, passion and business. Fredrica lives with her husband James Harker-Syren and their three children in San Diego, CA.

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