18 Best baby bath toys: The best buys for babies and toddlers

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  • Choosing from the huge variety of best baby bath toys to keep your child engaged enough to stay in the water can be tricky, there’s a lot to consider.

    A 3-month-old might love to watch you sprinkle water, while a 3-year-old will be more focused on scooping and pouring themselves. With that in mind, we try and test a whole load of bath toys with a range of children under the age of 4. We also get the pros and cos from parents to find out which bath toys will keep the little splashers happy and engaged the most.

    Baby bath toys are great fun and can offer a number of psychological benefits. Dr. Amanda Gummer, a child development expert and psychologist, highlights the top thing to bear in mind when buying baby bath toys; “One of the major safety concerns is the mould that can grow in water toys. So look for easy-to-clean, and then do it regularly. It’s essential.”

    Best baby bath toys

    1. Cuddledry Babysafe Bath Duck

    Best for mould-free fun

    split screen image of teether polka dot duck bath toy and in the bath

    Credit: CuddleDry / Future

    Age suitability: 0-6 months | Batteries: Not needed

    After you’ve chosen from the huge range of best baby baths add a few toys to it. And this award-winning rubber ducky is a go-to. It comes in a beautiful pale pink/blue or a more neutral beige polka dot style. Touted as a mould-free as the all natural rubber toy has no holes, so no water can get inside to create the mould. Pthalate free and non toxic, child safe – conforms to EN71. Each sale supports the regeneration of the world’s oceans.

    Mum-of-one Michelle says: “I originally bought it because it went with the colour scheme of our nursery, I didn’t even realise the pros to it. And now our little one is here and 5 months old, he loves it when it bobs in the bath with him. We named ours Nigel as he just had that vibe.”

    VIEW AT NOTHS | £12.99

    2. Munchkin Float and Play Bubbles

    Best for stimulating senses

    close up image of turtle baby bath toy

    Credit: Amazon

    Age suitability: 0-6 months | Batteries: Not needed

    Once you’ve chosen bath products for your baby; like the best bubble bath or bath seat the next is fun toys and this is an ‘Amazon Choice’ with an impressive 4.6 out of 5 stars and over 8,000 ratings. These bath toys stimulate baby’s early senses – sight, hearing and touch. The bubbles float and are easy for baby to grasp, each pack contains two different bubble characters.

    Mum-of-four Louise tells us; “Munchkin has been around for over 25 years, it’s one of my go-to brands for all toys. These bubbles float, spin and rattle my 6 month old loves reaching out for them in the bath, Plus these are easily cleaned so no threat of mould building up.”

    VIEW AT AMAZON | £5.17

    3. Zoggs Kid’s Seal Flips Pool Water Toy

    Best for building water confidence

     

    three colourful floaty discs for best bath toys round up

    Credit: Amazon

    Age suitability: 3-6 months | Batteries: Not needed

    These clever flip toys help to build confidence around water from 3 months old. They’re light and easily bob around the pool. And the shape encourages your child to blow and make the seal head flip, instilling the important aspects of breathing techniques when in water. They’re perfect for the bath and – as they get older – the swimming pool.

    Swim instructor at Medway Pools, David says: “We use these in our lessons. They are very light so they float, if you don’t get quite a perfect grip on it, it just flips around and floats away. And the babies tend to splash to show they want to get closer, while toddlers will try to walk after th em – both ways build up confidence with water.”

    VIEW AT AMAZON | £12

    4. Infantino Senso’ Plug and Squirt Baby Bath Toys

    Best for switching it up

    four neon coloured squirty bath toys

    Credit: amazon

    Age suitability: 0-6 months | Batteries: Not needed

    Super cute set of 4 16cm-high squirty bathtime friends, including an octopus, sea horse, turtle and frog. Not only do they bob and float, your little on can also pull them apart and snap back together in different combinations; an octo-horse, or turog. And it means you can pull them apart and make sure they’re completely clean and free of mould.

    Dad-of-twins, Matt says: “Milo and Felix loved these and their squirtiness. They loved swapping the colourful heads and bottoms to create silly ‘octohorses’ and ‘frogtles’. They feel durable, well-made and soft to the touch.”

    VIEW AT AMAZON | £10

    5. Nuby Fun Watering Can Bath Toy

    Best for learning cause and effect

    neon green plastic watering can for bath play

    Credit: Nuby

    Age suitability: 6-12 months | Batteries: Not needed

    This baby watering can has an impressive 4.8 out of 5 star rating on Amazon, with over 5,500 reviews. It’s colourful, fun and great value. The handle is shaped just right for baby hands and, though the wide opening makes it easy to fill, it sprinkles water out very gently. Mum of one Lucy says: “This one is a double whammy for us as we use it in the bath and the garden. My one year old loves sprinkling water pretty much everywhere. Plus Nuby is such a go-to brand for us.”

    VIEW AT AMAZON | £6

    6. Bathtime Pirate Boat

    Best for longevity

    brightlyblue and red bathtime pirate boat

    Credit: John Lewis

    Age suitability: 6-12 months | Batteries: Not needed

    This bath toy secures to the side of the bath with suckers. It has lots of moving parts and buttons to press to keep little ones positively mesmerised.  As your little ones grow it will support their imagination development and communication skills.

    One John Lewis fan says; “I bought this for my niece Christmas three years ago and it’s still going strong! She loves all the different moving parts and it’s great for her parents too as not too big and doesn’t create lots of splashing!”

    VIEW AT JOHN LEWIS | £15

    7. Underwater Disco Lightshow

    Best for calm sensory fun

    dark image with a water proof bath disco light

    Credit: NOTHS

    Age suitability: 6-12 months | Batteries: x3 AAA

    A disco in the bath is a sure fire way to keep your little one in the bubbles. This ingenious floating disco light simply bobs in the water and projects multicoloured light sequences on the bath and ceiling. Battery operated and water resistant.

    Mum-of-one, Tanya says: “I really wanted my 10-month old to have a relaxing bath, and this delivered just that. He was so mesmerised by the lights and reaching for them he was all zenned out and ready for bed.”

    VIEW AT NOTHS | £19.95

    8. Green Toys Tide Pool Bath Set

    Best for eco-friendly families

    green basket bag with collection of beach -themed toys

    Credit: Green Toys

    Age suitability: 6-12 months | Batteries: Not needed

    This cute tide set comes with 7 separate items – a starfish, scallop, abalone, snail, squid, and jellyfish, as well as a seaweed-patterned storage bag – all 100% recycled plastic. There are holes throughout the sides and bottom of the bag so water can drain out and it can all dry between uses. Plus, the whole set is also dishwasher safe and contains no BPA, phthalates, or PVC. It’s an all-round winner.

    Mum-of-two, Jasmine tells us; “My two love playing with this set. They are so focused on scooping and pouring water between the items, it means I can quickly get their hair washed!”

    VIEW AT AMAZON | £22.94

    9. Munchkin Colour Mix Fish

    Best for water bobbing

    three colourful fish to play with bath

    Credit: Jojomamanbebe

    Age suitability: 12 -24 months | Batteries: Not needed

    These colourful fish will blow your little one’s mind when they slowly start to change colour in warm water (recommended temperature from 37°C-37.8°C). These are fun to play with and perfect for teaching cause and effect, as they gradually change back while drying, so little ones can play, rinse and repeat the next day. Plus, they are uniquely designed to float upright when dropped into water. And another plus is that they are easy to keep clean and free from mould.

    VIEW AT JOJO MAMAN BEBE | £7.49

    10. Toomies Tomy 7 in 1 Activity Octopus

    Best for exciting engagement

    orange octopus bath toy with colourful friends

    Credit: Amazon

    Age suitability: 12 – 24 months | Batteries: Not needed

    Works with fine motor skills, boosts water confidence and can help with counting and lots of shape sorting fun.

    Mum-of-two Lynsey says; “My two love playing with this so much. The scooping, and pouring and squirting. The only thing I’d be aware of is to really squirt the water completely out after each use as they did get mould after a long time. And I had to throw them away. But before then, the kids loved it.”

    VIEW AT AMAZON | £15

    11. VTech Splashtime Submarine Bath Toy

    Best for honing motor skillsVtech submarine to stick to side of bath

    Credit: John Lewis

    Age suitability: 12 -24 months | Batteries: X3 AA

    It’s an all singing, all dancing bath toy. This cool submarine suckers to the side of the bath and has a rotatable periscope which water pours out of… in four different ways – all teaching cause and effect. Your little one will love to see water sprinkle out of the search light. spin out of the engine roller, fill up the porthole to make the starfish float and shower down on the gears to turn them. Plus they can press the light-up goggles for fun phrases, and music.

    Mum-of-two, Lisa says; “I love V-Tech it’s such a strong brand, they really focus on helping to develop skills in babies. My little one loves this and ‘seat dances’ to the music.”

    VIEW AT JOHN LEWIS | £24.99

    12. TOMY Toomies Peppa Pig George’s Dinosaur Float

    Best for Peppa Pig fans

    Peppa pig in a dragon inflatable as part of our best bath toys roundup

    Credit: John Lewis

    Age suitability: 12 -24 months | Batteries: Not needed

    While Peppa Pig isn’t every parents favourite character, she seems to be a hit with the kids. This clever bath toy brings her and her little brother George together in an inflatable dinosaur. Made up of three parts, there’s a circular base, a dino that sits on top and collects water plus a soft squidgy George character. This versatile toy will grow with your child as they discover new ways to play, and build their confidence around water.

    Dad of two, Chris says; “I can’t stand Peppa but my youngest loves her so this was a great buy. He loves to squirt water out of George’s mouth into the dino’s.”

    VIEW AT JOHN LEWIS | £10.49

    13. Single Wilko Wind Up Bath Toy

    Best for staying on budget

    Various colourful wind up water animals as part of our best bath toys round up

    Credit: Wilko

    Age suitability: 12 -24 months | Batteries: Not needed

    Simple plastic lightweight wind up bath toys. You can choose from purple turtle, green crocodile, blue whale or a ‘nemo’ fish. Be warned, if you order on line it will be surprise which one you get!

    Mum-of-one, Shirah says; “We got these as a stocking filler at Christmas. My daughter loves them, even though they’re not the best at actually swimming on the water, she loves trying to wind them up.”

    VIEW AT WILKO | £2.25

    14. Sunny Patch Louie Lobster Claw Catcher 

    Best for coordination and hand strength

    red lobster and his colourful friends

    Credit: Melissa & Doug

    Age suitability: 36 months+ | Batteries: Not needed

    This is a great squeeze and grab toy in a bright-red lobster shape. Louie the lobster comes with three fish sinkers and game ideas.

    Mum-of-three Dionne says; “While this is suggested for older children, my two and a half year old loves it. She is able to squeeze the handle with ease and squeals as she tries to catch toys with it. We also use it in the paddling pool, it’s always a hit with other kids too. Definitely recommend.”

    VIEW AT AMAZON | £11.99

    15. Floating dinosaur foam bath toys

    Best for story telling

    multi coloured foam dinosaurs

    Credit: Jojomamanbebe

    Age suitability: 36 months+ | Batteries: Not needed

    Dino fans assemble! All 36 shapes will be part of an illustrious bathtime story, we promise. These foam dinosaurs will go on adventures both in and outside the bath as they can stick to the tiles or side of the bath as well as float on the water. Plus, parent win – they come with they’re own scoop and store net that suckers to the tiles. A game-changer when it comes to draining the bath.

    Mum-of-one, Kiran says; “I bought these almost a year ago and my son plays with them every night – all this time and still no mould. Plus they’re much  better quality than similar products – where they started to peel and flake – I would buy these again. Definitely recommend.”

    VIEW AT JOJO MAMAN BEBE | £13.50

    16. Munchkin bubble blower

    Best for bubble lovers

    grey elephant with b lue face

    Credit: jojomamanbebe

    Age suitability: 24 months+ | Batteries: Not needed

    As best baby bath toys go, this it ‘toddler operated and toddler approved’ as described by Jojo Maman Bebe. You simply wet the blue cloth circle, add soap or shampoo, and blow through the one-way mouthpiece to create a magical bubble stream. The clever design lets bubbles blow out of the trunk without your child sucking anything in. It teaches cause and effect and helps kids practice hand-eye coordination, too. Its ring-shaped body is easy for children to hold too.

    Mum-of-one Lynn says; “At first my son thought it was a ‘baby toy’ but when I had a go, he wanted it for himself. He loves trying to blow bubbles out of it – though don’t expect clear round singular bubbles. It’s more like clump of smaller bubbles that all come out together – a mass of bubbles. But the litte ones will still love it.”

    VIEW AT JOJO MAMAN BEBE | £6.49

    17. New Kids Childrens Baby Bathtime Boats

    Best for simple and effective fun

    stack of colourful boats

    Credit: Amazon

    Age suitability: 24 months+ | Batteries: Not needed

    Colourful and lightweight boats, great for pouring, stacking and floating. Size: 10cm x 5cm x 3.5cm. It’s an ‘Amazon Choice’ and has 4.4 out of 5 stars with one reviewer saying; “My 2 year old was desperate for boats! I bought these as a quick fix to her interest and to support her growth. These are great as it helps promote a fun bath and aid in h2o, learning colours and words such as sink, float, hollow, etc. The fact the boat pack is stackable compact and light proves useful to bring any where-even the paddling pool for opening the imagination further. Ahaa mateys this be a recommended buy! Small, simple, effective!”

    VIEW AT AMAZON | £3.85

    18. Green Toys Bathtime Ferry Boat

    Best for easy-cleaning

    blue plastic ferry b oat with a red and yellow car as part of our best bath toys round up

    Credit: Green Toys

    Age suitability: 24 months+ | Batteries: Not needed

    As best bath toys go, this is up there in the God tier. And they’re created from 100% recycled plastic while being completely dishwasher safe. This toy will keep your little one completely engaged with it’s two storey ferry, it comes with two cars and an extendable ramp to drive up and down.

    Mum-of-one Steph says; “This was an impulse buy from TK Maxx and it was such a hit! It bobs on the water and is great for my little one to tell travel stories. And, I didn’t realise it was dishwasher proof until a year in – THAT was a game changer. No mould here.”

    VIEW AT JOHN LEWIS | £26.99

    Do babies need bath toys?

    Bath toys can be a great way to help with visual and spatial development, as well as water confidence. Dr. Amanda Gummer says, ‘Bath time with young children is a lovely bonding opportunity. The safety aspect means that it’s automatically a great chance for some quality parent-child time. Bath toys can help parents feel more confident in playing with their children and can promote all sorts of development.

    ‘Boats can form the props for a high seas adventure, toys with numbers, shapes and colours can be a fun way of including some school learning and fish or other sea creatures can help children think about the underwater world and gain water confidence.’

    Are battery-operated bath toys safe?

    Dr. Amanda Gummer adds, ‘Bath toys should have the same safety certification as other toys so do look for the CE stamp or Lionmark. Children do put things in their mouths in the bath so choking is something to watch for – avoid things with small parts for young babies. The other major safety concern is the mould that can grow in water toys, so regular cleaning is essential.’

    Most bath toys have recommended ages on the packaging. Of course, bath time can get messy, so you don’t want toys adding to the clean-up operation, too. We’ve included bath crayons on our baby bath toy list, but there’s no need to panic…

    What are bath crayons and will they damage your bathroom?

    Fear not, bath crayons have been designed with parents in mind. Most are water soluble which means they are easy to wipe clean off the side of the tub or tiles on the wall. However, they shouldn’t be used on porous surfaces, like grout, or older showers as they may stain the surfaces.

    They are also perfectly safe for children. The ones in our selection are made from New Zealand beeswax and soy wax.

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