If you have children you are bound to have bins full of stuffed animals. My children have quite a few, but they love and play with them. They of course have their favorites and usually those stuffed animals get dragged all over the house picking up the dirt and grime. I have washed a couple hundred stuffed animals because of my kids being sick and when I also sold on eBay stuffed animals were one of my top sellers.
What types of stuffed animals can NOT be washed?
- Stuffed animals with computerized parts or the animals you squeeze a hand or foot to make a sound or move.
- Stuffed animals with music boxes are tricky, because when I sold the stuffed animals on eBay I did wash any plush with music boxes inside and most of the time they survived. It is a toss-up on whether you care if the stuffed animal gets musically ruined verses clean.
- Very old or well-loved stuffed animals – we have several of these kind of stuffed animals that are 30 and 40 years old from my husband’s and my childhood.
- Any stuffed animal with parts that are not sewn on, but glued like clothing pieces, jewelry, shoes, hats, or hair.
- My daughter has several girly stuffed animals with lace, sequins, and glitter that cannot be washed.
- Stuffed animals with Styrofoam stuffing similar to what is found in bean bags.
How to wash your stuffed animals:
Place your stuffed animal in a pillow case or lingerie laundry bag this will help to not scratch the eyes and if you have an agitator rip off any limbs or tails.
I have a high-efficiency (HE) front loader machine with no agitator which is better for your stuffed animals because of the wear and tear agitation can do. If you do not have a HE machine like me and worry about your stuffed animals I would take your stuffed friends to a local coin laundry business and use one of their washing machines.
When it comes to detergent I use whatever I normally use on my clothes. I have washed my stuffed animals with home made powder laundry detergent or commercial brands like HE Tide Free and Clear. If you have a very special stuffed animal you worry about I would probably only surface clean or use Woolite.
When I wash stuffed animals I always do it on cold because I do not want colors to bleed. Depending on the animal I may wash it on gentle, but most of the time I do it on a normal cycle.
Washing your stuffed animals is not hard and I recommend washing them at least once a year especially if your children play with them. When finished hang them to dry or lay on a laundry rack. Depending on the fabric or faux fur of your animal it may or may not look the same, but a cleaner toy pet is a better than a dirty one in my opinion.
Hope my washing tips for stuffed animals helps you take the guess work of how to do it and may your stuffed animals be clean. Have you seen my post on How to Get Pee Stains Out of a Mattress this is another great post for those messes children can make in their beds.