Kids’ Soft Toys
Kids’ soft toys are also known as plush toys or plushies, some people may call them stuffed animals or cuddly toys. These are famous and ageless toys that are sewn with an outer fabric from a textile such as cotton cloth, stuffed with flexible materials. They are soft, flexible, and usually, they are made in various cute animals and cartoon characters.
Kids’ soft toys are popular to be used as comfort objects for babies and children. They cuddle them when they sleep or when they are scared, to reduce the anxiety due to separation or night fear. Who can resist soft toys? Even some adults keep their soft toys as companions since childhood years. They can appear in many sizes, as small as a palm-size or as big as a human size.
In this article, you will learn about soft toys, safety tips when choosing soft toys for your little one and how to care for them.
Kids’ soft toys
Kids soft toys are still great toys for small children even though we are having much more modern toys and digital gadget for our little one to choose from. Soft toys are not only soft and cuddly, children often use them during their pretend play, talk to them and play with them as if they are real human.
Soft toys are not only meant for kids, but adult too. Soft toys are usually given as gifts during festive seasons, or in any special events such as wedding, baby showers, Valentine’s day, graduation and birthday. Some people even have a hobby keeping soft toys as collection.
Soft toys can be a great toys for small children but there are certain points need our close attention when choosing soft toys for your little one. Small children like to bite and suck on toys, they will basically grab anything and put them in their mouth. Therefore, they must be safe from chemicals, choking and strangulation hazards. We will help you with important safety tips when choosing soft toys for your little ones.
Safety tips when choosing soft toys
Soft toys are sewn with an outer fabric from a textile. They can be cotton cloth, fake fur, hair or wool. Fake fur, wool and hair will fall off and your little one will bound to expose to these choking hazards. Avoid soft toys with stick-on or sewed-on features such as buttons, ribbons, other small and prickly shinny objects. You don’t want them to fall off or easily pried off by the little hands and end up in their mouths.
Young babies like to chew on toys, make sure you choose ones that are made from cloth and easy to clean.
Do not take for granted that all toys that are made for children are always safe. As these soft toys in the market are usually come from mass production, it is safer to check for any defects before buying one home.
Always inspect the soft toys visually, and feel it by pressing it whether the filling may contain any sharp objects which may be harmful to children. Make sure they are securely sewn and no tear at the seams. Synthetic fiber or plastic pellets that leaks out from soft toys may pose choking hazards to little children. Check also any loose and long thread, as it will cause strangulation and choking too.
Some soft toys are battery operated. Make sure the battery compartment is secured with a screw and it is not easy to pry open by the little hands.
For parents, safety is the first priority when it comes to children toys. Besides visual inspection for any small parts or loose part that may cause choking and strangulation hazards, we also need to concern about whether there are any chemicals existence during the toys production. If toys are complied to safety standard, that it has been assessed, by series of mechanical / physical testing, chemical and flammability, we can be assured that this toy is safe for our children.
In Malaysia, all the toys that are sold in the market, must be affixed with the MC mark. This MC mark is an indicator that this particular toys are sold has been checked with prescribed safety standards. This is under the Consumer Protection ( Certificate of Approval & Conformity Mark of Safety Standards) Regulations 2010, for toys safety. Besides the MC mark, you will also find registration number on the product label or on the packaging. The soft toys will also have a proper packaging labelling the manufacturer, importer or distributor, and some will also accompanied by warning and information on precautions where necessary.
Do not buy any soft toys where you do not know where it was manufactured. You can’t be sure whether the soft toys are really safe for children as it has never tested before.
Some soft toys are given away from carnivals, expos or vending machines, these soft toys are not required to meet safety standard. Always check these toys for any defects, loosing parts or sharp objects before you give to your child.
How to care for them?
Kids soft toys do get dirty. How do you clean them? Do you need to toss them into the washing machine or hand wash them every time after they play? Some soft toys are washable. Some may not be able to toss in washing machine.
Not sure what to do? Here is what you can do – dry cleaning them. You just need a vacuum cleaner, brush, baking soda and a bunch of plastic garbage bags.
- Pour in some baking soda into a plastic garbage bag, half cup or one cup depends on how many soft toys you want to clean. Put your dirty soft toys inside the garbage bag and squeeze out the excess air out of the bag. Shake the bag for a couple of minutes so that the soft toys are able to get contact with the baking soda.
- Keep the toys in the bag for at least 15 minutes or so. The use of baking soda is to deodorize the toy and bind the dirt and grime from the fabric.
- Open the bag and shake off the excess baking soda from the toys. Discard the bag in the trash.
- Remove the residue of the baking soda using a vacuum cleaner. Use a brush to brush off the the remaining baking soda residue and dirt.
- Let the soft toys air dry at least an hour before you offer it to your child.
Play is the work of childhood and toys are an important tool for playing. Kids have much shorter attention spans than adults, so they get bored easily. You don’t need to own every toy in the market, you just have to own the right toys for your kids to enjoy playing while learning. In this...