How To Clean Squishies: Safe Methods for Kids’ Toys 

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How To Clean Squishies: Safe Methods for Kids' Toys

Squishies, the colorful, soft, and often scented toys that have taken the world by storm, have become a staple in the hands of children and adults alike. Initially hailing from Japan, these stress-relieving novelties are more than just a playful squeeze; they’re intricately designed with a variety of shapes, sizes, and textures, making them not only lovable but also prone to getting dirty. Given their porous surface and the propensity for attracting dust, grime, and bacteria – especially after being handled frequently or dropped on various surfaces – understanding how to properly clean them is crucial for maintaining both their allure and the health of their users.

As parents and caretakers are well aware, maintaining the cleanliness of children’s toys is a task that lies at the intersection of health and preservation. This makes the knowledge of safe cleaning methods an invaluable part of toy maintenance. In the next part of our article, we will delve into the gentle, yet effective techniques to wash and care for squishies without damaging their material or structural integrity. From natural cleaning solutions to tips on drying and storage, we’ll ensure that your beloved squishies are not only sparkling clean but also remain a safe and enduring part of playtime. Stay tuned as we guide you through these key takeaways, offering peace of mind with every squish and squeeze.

Key Takeaways

1. Squishies are often made from materials like foam that can absorb water and dirt, making it important to clean them gently to prevent damage. Before cleaning, it’s vital to check the manufacturer’s instructions for any specific recommendations or warnings to ensure the appropriate cleaning method is used.

2. For general cleaning, using a mixture of warm water and a gentle soap is recommended. Create a soapy solution by mixing the soap with the water, then use a soft cloth or brush to lightly scrub the surface of the squishy. This helps to remove dirt and grime without saturating the toy with water.

3. If a squishy becomes stained, spot cleaning is the preferred method. Apply a small amount of the soap and water solution directly to the stain and gently rub it with a cloth or soft brush. Refrain from using harsh chemicals or heavy scrubbing techniques, as these can degrade the squishy’s material or remove the paint and decorations.

4. After cleaning, it’s important to let squishies air dry completely before use. Squeeze out any excess water gently and place them in a well-ventilated area away from direct sunlight or heat sources, which can cause the foam to warp or lose its shape.

5. To maintain the squishy’s condition and cleanliness, it’s encouraged to store them in a cool, dry place and avoid exposing them to substances that can cause stains or attract dirt. Regular cleaning after use can help extend the life of the squishy and ensure it remains safe and hygienic for kids to play with.


What Are the Best Practices for Cleaning Squishy Toys Safely?

Identifying the Material of Your Squishies

Before you begin the cleaning process, it’s crucial to know what material your squishies are made of. Most squishies are made from polyurethane foam, which is sensitive to heat and harsh chemicals. Make sure that the cleaning methods you choose are compatible with this material to avoid damaging your squishies.

Basic Surface Cleaning for Squishies

Start with a gentle approach by wiping the surface of the squishy with a soft, damp cloth. Avoid using hot water as extreme temperatures can affect the foam. For visible dirt or marks, use a mild soap solution, apply it with a cloth or a sponge, and carefully dab the affected areas. Rinse the cloth with clean water and go over the toy to remove any soap residue.

Dealing with Stubborn Stains

For more stubborn stains, consider creating a paste with baking soda and water. Apply it onto the stain and gently rub it in with a soft toothbrush or cloth. After a few minutes, wipe the area clean with a damp cloth. Be sure to remove all the baking soda mixture from the squishy’s surface.

Drying Your Squishies Properly

After cleaning, it is important to let your squishies air dry completely. Avoid wringing them out as this can deform the foam. Instead, pat them gently with a towel and leave them in a well-ventilated area, away from direct sunlight and heat sources, which could cause them to fade or decompose.

Sanitizing Your Squishies

If you’re concerned about germs, especially if the squishies are shared among children, a safe sanitizing method is to use a cloth dampened with a disinfectant suitable for children’s toys. Natural options such as diluted vinegar can also be effective and are less likely to cause irritation or allergic reactions.

Storage Tips to Keep Squishies Clean

Proper storage is key to keeping squishies clean. Use containers or bags that will protect them from dust and dirt. Educate children to store their squishies after play, minimizing the frequency of cleaning required.

Maintaining the Shape and Texture of Squishies

Avoid cleaning methods that involve heavy scrubbing or pulling. Gentle cleaning preserves the squishy’s original shape and texture. If the squishy becomes misshapen, set it aside and let it slowly regain its form, resisting the urge to squish it until it’s fully dry.

Is Using Washing Machines or Dishwashers a Good Idea?

It is generally not recommended to clean squishies in washing machines or dishwashers as the agitation and high temperatures can break down the foam. Stick to hand cleaning to ensure your squishy’s longevity.

What Should You Avoid When Cleaning Squishies?

Avoid using strong chemicals, bleach, or abrasive cleaners that can deteriorate the squishy material or cause color fading. Additionally, do not submerge squishies in water as they might absorb it and develop mold from the inside out.

How Can I Keep My Child’s Squishies Germ-Free?

  1. Regularly wipe squishies with a solution of child-safe disinfectant or use a mixture of vinegar and water.
  2. Encourage children to wash their hands before and after playing with squishies to reduce the spread of germs.
  3. Perform spot cleaning as soon as stains occur to maintain a clean toy surface.
  4. Create a cleaning routine, possibly incorporating it into the child’s responsibilities, to ensure that the squishies are sanitized on a regular basis.


Can you clean squishies with soap and water?

Yes, squishies can generally be cleaned with soap and water. Use a mild soap and gently scrub the surface of the squishy with a soft cloth or sponge. Rinse thoroughly with water to remove any soap residue.

How often should squishies be cleaned?

Squishies should be cleaned whenever they become visibly dirty or have been in contact with food or dirty surfaces. Depending on the frequency of use, a good rule of thumb is to clean them every few weeks to maintain hygiene.

Is it safe to use antibacterial wipes on squishies?

While antibacterial wipes can be used on some squishies, always check the manufacturer’s instructions first to ensure that the material is compatible with the chemicals in the wipes, and avoid excessive scrubbing which may damage the surface.

Can squishies go in the washing machine?

It is not recommended to clean squishies in the washing machine as the harsh cycle can damage them. Hand washing is the safest and most gentle method to clean these delicate toys.

How do you get stains out of squishies?

For stain removal, gently dab the stained area with a cloth soaked in soapy water. If the stain persists, you might try using a stain remover that is safe for the squishy’s material, but check the manufacturer’s instructions first.

Can you use vinegar to clean squishies?

Vinegar is a natural cleaning agent that can be used on squishies, but it should be diluted with water. Make a solution with one part vinegar to two parts water and gently clean the squishy, then rinse thoroughly.

What is the best way to dry squishies after washing?

After washing, gently squeeze out any excess water from the squishy and let it air dry completely before use. Avoid direct sunlight or heat sources, as these can warp or fade the toy.

Are there any cleaning solutions to avoid when cleaning squishies?

Avoid using harsh chemicals, bleach, or abrasive cleaners on squishies as they can break down the material and cause damage to the texture and color of the toy.

Can squishies harbor bacteria?

Squishies, like any toy that is frequently handled, can harbor bacteria over time, especially if used by multiple children or has been exposed to food or unclean surfaces. Regular cleaning is important to prevent the build-up of bacteria.

Is it necessary to sanitize squishies, and if so, how?

If squishies are shared among children or have been in contact with germs, sanitizing may be necessary. Use a gentle, kid-safe disinfectant, following the guidelines on the product, and ensure the squishy is thoroughly rinsed and dried.

Final Thoughts

Cleaning squishies is an essential aspect of maintaining your child’s play environment safe and hygienic. While these toys provide immense joy and stress relief to kids, they can become breeding grounds for bacteria if not regularly and properly cleaned. Adopting a gentle, effective cleaning regimen ensures the longevity of the squishies and the health of your children. Remember to always use kid-friendly cleaning methods and to verify any cleaning solutions for compatibility with squishy materials. In essence, a clean squishy is not only more appealing but also a safer companion for your child.

In conclusion, the safety of our kids remains paramount in all toy-related activities, including cleaning. Understanding the proper care for their squishies empowers parents and guardians to make informed decisions about the products and methods they use. Not all toys are created equal, and as squishies continue to captivate the hearts of children worldwide, equipping ourselves with the knowledge of safe cleaning techniques will contribute to a healthier playtime and a more joyful childhood experience. Happy cleaning!

Keith Anderson

Keith Anderson is the founder and passionate force behind SqueakyCleaner Homes. With a keen eye for detail and a love for all things clean, Keith shares his extensive knowledge to help you transform your spaces into spotless sanctuaries. Join him in his quest for a cleaner world!