Non-toxic bath toys are a must keeping your baby safe in the tub. Here’s our expert (parent) guide to the best chemical-free bath toys. BPA, PVC, Phthalates Free!
Bath time is A LOT of fun in our house.
We introduced the bath-book-bath sequence into our baby’s bedtime routine quite early on. And we try to stick with it as much as possible.
The result? Whenever we start to run the bath at night, she gets excited. She knows it will be a whole lot of fun and she’ll get to play with her favorite bath toys.
Bath time also means spending high quality, undistracted one-on-one time with her parents. With me (for her bath) and her dad (for the post-bath reading of her favorite baby books, pyjamas, and settling in on her crib mattress).
Sounds pretty great, right?
Bath time brings predictability to our evenings. As parents, that’s awesome. The fact that it’s almost always followed by 11 to 12 blissful hours of sleep doesn’t hurt, either.
However, bath time is also a source of some anxiety.
We always offer our daughter a ton of baby bath toys to choose from. Toys, after all, are crucial to a baby’s development. But we’re always wondering and worrying. Are the toys and bath products (like kids shampoo, conditioner, detangler, and lotion) we use safe? Or are they filled with potentially harmful chemicals, like phthalates or fire retardants?
Unfortunately, not all bathtub toys (or baby bathtubs) are good news for your baby or the planet. Especially the plastic ones.
Besides being unsustainable and a major source of pollution, plastic requires a lot of chemicals.
And babies and young kids are uniquely vulnerable to those chemicals. Putting toys in their mouths and sucking is one way babies ingest chemicals (we also recommend using fragrance free cleaners or baby safe dish soap to keep your toys clean). Toys can also leach chemicals into the bath water – and is more likely to do so at higher temperatures.
So what’s the solution?
Happily, there are a few companies out there making fun, safe toys for your baby and the planet.
Here are some of our favorite companies. We followed up our company list with top picks for the best bath toys that are also safe and non-toxic.
Non-Toxic Bath Toy Brands You Can Trust
There’s a few companies out there that are committed to making 100% safe and non-toxic products, across their entire line of toys.
To me, those are the companies that deserve our money. There are other companies that make some non-toxic bath toys, whereas other items in their line include potentially harmful chemicals.
I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to spend my time sifting through a company’s website to find out which toys are toxic, and which are safe. I’d much rather shop knowing ALL THE TOYS ARE SAFE, right?
As parents, I really think we need to vote with our wallets. That means spending our money to buy from those companies that have made the decision to put our kids’ safety over their own profits or convenience.
Those are the companies I’ve chosen to include on this list.
Liewood and Konges Sløjd (on Scandibørn)
Scandibørn offers high quality Scandinavian kids products to customers in the USA and UK. According to founder Grace, the store “was born from a passion for Scandinavian inspired design. When our little boy, Harry, was born in 2015 we just couldn’t find the decor and accessories for his nursery that reflected our passion for this style. So in early 2016 we decided to follow our hearts and Scandibørn was born.”
Scandibørn is a fabulous online store for getting beautiful and high quality baby and kids products.
“Oli & Carol is a fun, young, creative and happy brand specialized in designing cool natural toys for modern parents and their kids offering a wide variety of retro designs inspired from the 60s and 70s in pastel and monochrome colors.”
Manufacturing: Designed in Barcelona, made in Morocco I Materials: 100% natural rubber from Hevea Brasiliensis trees (aka: rubber trees); hand-painted with food-grade dyes I Family Run: Started by 2 sisters, Olimpia and Carolina I Non-Toxic Credentials: PVC, BPA, Phthalates and Nitrosamines free
These toys are gorgeous, and come with a sense of vintage whimsy. They look cool enough that you won’t have to hide them from site when guests come to visit, and they may even strike up a conversation, since they have a comforting old-timey look to them.
There’s no worry of mould growing in Oli & Carol toys. The company seals them to prevent water from getting in. And they’re all PVC, BPA, Phthalates and Nitrosamines free.
One of my favorite things about the Oli & Carol products is they have really cute shapes: an elephant, an avocado, kale, and coconut slices are a few examples of their offering! They’re all super adorable.
“As parents and toy designers, we have had enough of cheap plastic toys”
Manufacturing: Made in the USA I Materials: Plastic-free play, removing oil-based plastics I Parent Run: Created by toymakers and parents David Bowen & Chris Clemmer I Non-Toxic Credentials: Made naturally without any petroleum-based products. All Begin Again toys are PVC, Phthalates, and BPA free
BeginAgain Toys are made in the USA, at the company’s workshop in Colorado. The company is all about helping families create plastic-free play, and, more specifically, eliminating oil-based plastics from play.
Instead of oil-based plastic, BeginAgain uses materials like rubberwood, natural rubber, cornstarch rubber, Maine rock maple, and eco-friendly, water-based stains (on their wooden toys). All their toys are PVC, phthalates, and BPA free.
Their bathtub ball and shark set is a great starting place to try out this company!
“HEVEA began as a question that needed an answer: how to take care of our children and our planet just a little bit better.”
Manufacturing: Danish-design, made in Malaysia, Morrocco I Materials: 100% natural rubber from Hevea Brasiliensis trees (aka: rubber trees) I Parent Run: Founded by Terese shortly after having her baby I Non-Toxic Credentials: BPA, PVC, Phthlatae Free
Hevea products are non-toxic and easier on the planet compared to plastic, and are made from FSC certified natural rubber trees. They’re all sealed, meaning there’s no holes for water to get into. I’ve had to throw out more than a few bath toys in my day after seeing black water sloshing around inside, so appreciate when toy makers go to the effort to prevent mold from taking root.
According to Hevea Communications Director, Torben Hoffeldt:
The latex we use is 100% natural and all our products are throughly tested with internationally acclaimed testing agencies. Whenever we enter a market, we naturally meet all the safety standards. Since all our products are made from natural rubber, our products per definition “contains no plastic, BPA, petroleum, phthalates, PVC, or artificial additives”.
“We pride ourselves on creating products that we feel comfortable giving to our own child”
Manufacturing: Designed in Vancouver, Canada I Materials: 100% natural rubber from Hevea Brasiliensis trees (aka: rubber trees); I Parent Run: Started by Tanya and Olek, and inspired by their daughter Nicole I Non-Toxic Credentials: Food-grade paints are certified non-toxic and heavy metal free; toys are certified non-toxic BPA, PVC, Phthalate, and Nitrosamine free.
CaaOcho has a line of ocean-themed natural rubber toys, that use bright colors and fun, cartoon-like designs kids will love. The company only sells hermetically-sealed bath toys. As such, they’ll stay mold free on the inside – one less thing to worry about (and clean). Because they’re BPA, PVC, and phthalate free, you won’t have to worry when your kid sticks this in their mouth (which they inevitably will).
“We transform recycled milk jugs into imaginative playthings”
Manufacturing: Designed and made in the USA I Materials: Recycled milk jugs (100% recycled post-consumer high-density polyethylene [HDPE]) as well as recycled polypropylene and recycled low-density polyethylene (LDPE) I Non-Toxic Credentials: California-based company meeting some of the USA’s most stringent safety and chemical regulations; surpass USA and international standards for BPA and phthalates (they contain no BPA, PVC, phthalates, or coatings).
As a parent, it’s hard not to fall in love with Green Toys and their commitment to making today’s toys out of yesterday’s garbage. For every pound of used milk jugs the company uses to make a toy, they’re saving enough energy to power a laptop for an entire month! While your kids probably won’t care about the company’s environmental impact, they will love the toys. These things just look like a good time, and it’s easy to see yourself taking them from bathtime to dryland and back again.