How to Clean Wooden Toys

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Cleaning wooden toys are important especially for the safety of children against diseases and bacterias that can lurk around in dirty areas. Wooden toys should be treated properly especially during the cleaning process since it is prone to deteriorate if exposed in certain liquids. Here’s how to clean wooden toys and maintain them.

Colorful wooden toys on table

Why Choose Wooden Toys?

There are several types of materials–such as plastic and synthetic ones–that toys are made of. While you can choose other materials for your children’s toys, wooden toys can be a good choice for them due to their natural and eco-friendly materials as well as other health-related factors incorporated to it.

Wooden toys help with children’s creativity and social skills. Wooden toys require imagination and creativity compared to spoon-feeding vibrance of plastic and battery-operated toys. These are mostly blocks and puzzles which can also be a good way for them to connect with other children in terms of problem solving and building skills.

Things You Need for Cleaning Wooden Toys

Cleaning wooden toys is simple and easy to do and having the right materials and cleaning agents with you will make it a lot easier and time saving. Cleaning wooden toys is much more delicate compared to cleaning other types of materials. With that in mind, here are the things you need for cleaning wooden toys:

  • Proper liquid cleaning agent such as vinegar and water solution, mild dish soap, plain warm water, or non-toxic multipurpose cleaner and water solution
  • Bottle spray
  • Wash cloth
  • Sponge
  • Mineral or olive oil

Different Methods in Cleaning Wooden Toys

There are different methods in cleaning wooden toys. Since wooden toys are made of natural materials, they are prone to deterioration especially when soaked and exposed with water. With that, it’s best to maintain them with cleaning depending on what kind of dirt they have accumulated over the past days and weeks.

Overall Cleaning

If the wooden toy needed an overall cleaning, you can do that by choosing your preferred cleaning agent and apply it all-over the wooden toy using a sponge or a washcloth. You can also do that through a spray bottle to cover a bit more areas and gently wipe the toy with a damp washcloth or sponge to get rid of the solution.

Little kid playing with his wooden toys

If the wooden toy is varnished and painted, you can choose a more thorough cleaning process by using a mild dish soap. This soap is similar to what you use for cleaning your wooden comb, your lava rock beads. Additionally, a sponge to clean the dirt and rinse it with water.

Varnished and painted wooden toys can be used as bath toys, and tend to be more resilient in water because of the water resilient layers painted in their exterior.

After the cleaning process, the best way to dry the newly cleaned wooden toys would be putting them in the sun for a natural drying method. Also, this can help with preventing bacterial and dirt build-up during the drying process since bacterias and germs tend to stay in moist areas.

Dry Cleaning

You also clean your wooden toys by simply wiping them out with a dry clean towel and washcloth everyday. Children tend to put toys in their mouths and suck on their toys whenever they have the chance so there is a big possibility of bacterial build-up if the saliva stays in the wooden toys.

Wiping them with a dry cloth everyday is actually necessary just like regularly cleaning your treadmill belt when you exercise. Not just to maintain the wooden toys in its top shape but also to prevent diseases. It can also prevent conditions obtained through bacterias in germs that might lurk into children’s unchecked and unclean surroundings, things, and toys.

Cleaning will help them to maintain their good health and safety during playtime.

Stain Cleaning

Overall cleaning of wooden toys is a must, but they should be done in moderation since too much cleaning will compromise the integrity of the wood. You can get rid of specific and stubborn stains in wooden toys by spraying vinegar and warm water solution to the area. Vinegar is also helpful in cleaning your wood blinds in your home.

Wooden Toys Care and Maintenance

Wooden toys need to be maintained in order to have a longer life span. Toys with natural materials such as wood are durable and will withstand the test of time if given the proper care. Thus, it is important to know what type of care, maintenance, and safety reminders you need for wooden toys.

Care Tips and Reminders

Wooden toys are natural and eco-friendly items that children absolutely adore. However, there are things that you need to look out for whenever you purchase a new wooden toy or let children play with some. Despite known for being harmless, here are the care tips and reminder about wooden toys:

Curvy wooden toys playing by a kid
  • Newly purchased wooden toys tend to have a strong smell of either paint and varnish in them. You can remove this smell by spraying them with cleaning agents and wiping them with clean cloth.
  • Wooden toys have come in different shapes and sizes which can only be applicable in certain ages. For instance, wooden puzzles and build-type wooden toys are more applicable in children ages 7 and up since they come with small parts that can be chokable for toddlers. Go for big wooden toys for toddlers and children ages 6 below to prevent choking hazards.
  • Thoroughly inspect wooden toys before buying them for children. There are a few wooden toys in the market that have rough and pointy edges that are not child-friendly, especially in toddlers.
  • Always have supervision during play times to avoid and prevent any possible wooden toy related accidents. Wooden toys can be hard and heavy for certain age groups which causes small yet manageable accidents for them.

Wood Replenishing and Maintenance

Wooden toys and other things that are made of wood should be maintained. So, it can retain its integrity and quality for a long time. With that, proper moisturization is needed in order to avoid cracks, roughness, and brittleness.

You can use olive oil, mineral oil, and beeswax polish to moisturize them.

Drop a bit of your preferred moisturizing agent to the wood and gently wipe it using a clean washcloth. The reason is to help the oil spread evenly on the surface. You need to do this regularly when wooden toys look dull and dry in color.

Also, you need to moisturize them every after overall cleaning to retain its good finish.


Cleaning wooden toys is important and easy to do. You can clean wooden toys by spraying and wiping them with a non-toxic cleaning agent. Also, drying them under the sun to prevent bacterial build-up caused by moisture.

After drying, apply olive oil using a washcloth to moisturize the wood for maintenance.