How to get rid of the black stuff from bath toys


The gunk from just one bath toy

What’s the best way of getting rid of the black gunk in your bath toys? You know, the little black flakes which pops out of your five little ducks and your squirty bath toys when squeezed.

At first you think you can’t have cleaned the bath properly. Then with one firm squirt, you witness the gunk pour out of your baby’s beloved duck. Disgustingly, it’s mould. I’ve thrown a few of the offending ducks out but I’ve gone through so many now that I’m convinced there’s a way of reviving them. So I’ve done my research and here are my results to getting rid of the bath toy black stuff.


One of the offending creatures

1. Dishwasher: don’t bother, this did nothing. Although my toddler thought it was vaguely amusing seeing them in there.

2. Soak them in cola: squeeze out the air and suck up the cola into the duck until it’s full, then leave to soak.
Some people swear by this but it couldn’t persuade the ducks to clean up their act for me. It was slightly old Coke but I did try leaving it for 24 hours. No impact.

3. Soak them in Milton: I read that you can soak them in a solution of bleach and water but I worried about the bleach residue so I opted for Milton instead.
This worked a treat! The ducks do smell a bit Milton-esque but a good rinse and a trip on the dishwasher ride sorts that out:


Happy clean duck and his dolphin pal

4. Vinegar: If you don’t have bleach or Milton, try soaking them in a solution of 80% white vinegar and 20% water. Can’t vouch for this as I’ve chucked the rest of the gang in the Milton bucket. I’m a mum, I don’t have THAT much time to waste. Anyone else tried it? Let me know.

5. Stab them: take out your frustration by stabbing the hole in the toy a little bigger – or cut it carefully with a scissors. Then you can use a toothbrush to give it a scrub and it also means the water drains out of it easier in the first place to stop the mould building up.

6. Glue gun them: best to do this on new toys to prevent the problem in the first place. Dab the hot glue over the hole to make sure they’re fully sealed. No water will get in and the toy will float. This is fine for ducks but kind of defeats the object for your squirty toys.

7. Life too short? Don’t have the time to scrub a duck and you’re not crafty enough for a glue gun? Send them to ducky heaven and buy some more. Invest in non-squeezy toys or, if ducks are a must, keep a look out for ones without a hole – such as the Munchkin Bath Ducky which are a bit more expensive but they come in lots of different characters and they also tell you if the water temperature is too hot (by a sensor on it’s bottom – not by quacking!)

Going to try this? Has this worked for you? Got your own tips? Add a comment below 🙂

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4 thoughts on “How to get rid of the black stuff from bath toys

  1. I hope you take care of him and his grubby ways! Funny how they notice isn’t it? We had a night without any ducks or squeezy toys while I soaked them – there was much confusion! Good luck, let me know how you get on 🙂


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