Are you concerned about the dust and germs that can accumulate over time on your child’s favorite plush animal toys? As lovable and huggable as these stuffed toys may be, furry objects can attract a lot of dust. But, of course, you don’t want to damage your child’s plush pal! There are a few simple ways to clean, disinfect, and refresh plush animals without destroying any of their charm. To start, you need to carefully read the label on the toy, or, if it is missing, you need to determine what material the plush animal is made from and how delicate it may be.
Sturdy Toys – Washer and Dryer
Many plush toys will say right on the label that they are machine washable. If the label says to hand wash only, or if you are not certain, try one of the other methods below. The majority of toys with no label could probably survive a washing machine cycle, but you should check the type of material. There are a few key differences between a load of laundry and a plush animal or a group of stuffed toys. Make sure to use the most delicate cycle with only cold water to keep the colors bright. Add some fabric softener to keep the toys soft and huggable. It’s important not to stuff the machine too full – plush animals absorb water like a pillow and become heavy. When you put the plushies in the dryer, use the fluff/air or tumble dry cycle. You might want to use extra dryer sheets as stuffed toys can create a lot of static and a soft feel and fresh scent never hurt a teddy bear!
More Delicate Toys- Home Dry Cleaning
If your toy is a bit more fragile, consider using Dryel or another reputable brand of at-home dry cleaning bag. Put a small number of toys in the dryer on a low setting, as per the instructions, and you will soon have a fresh teddy bear or other stuffed toy. If your toy has plastic parts such as eyes or noses (many plush dogs, stuffed cats, or other toys have glued-on plastic,) you might want to use the dryer method. Plastic can melt and glue can loosen under heat and a regular run through the washer and dryer might damage them.