22 Bath Toys for Good, Clean Fun

Ready for some fun in the tub? Shop our favorite bath toys for toddlers and babies.
save article
profile picture of Danielle Halibey
Updated June 16, 2023
Image: Ground Picture | Shutterstock
We have included third party products to help you navigate and enjoy life’s biggest moments. Purchases made through links on this page may earn us a commission.

When bathtime rolls around, your mission is clear: Get baby clean from head to toe. While scrubbing food off that little face or paint off their fingers might feel like a chore, bathing baby can actually be a splashing good time. The key to an enjoyable experience for all? A collection of exciting bath toys to offer up when the going gets tough—or better yet, before baby turns into a squirming, slippery mess! Below, we’ve rounded up some buying tips, plus a list of the best bath toys to keep babies and toddlers entertained.

How to Choose the Best Bath Toys

Ready to start shopping? Check out our top tips for choosing the best tub toys for babies, toddlers and kids.

  • Choose a toy that’s age appropriate. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), baby bath toys aren’t necessary for young infants—the water itself is thrilling enough. That said, once baby is old enough for the bathtub, toys are a welcome addition. When shopping for baby and toddler bath toys, always defer to the manufacturer’s age guidelines to guarantee they’re suitable for your little one.

  • Look for sensory bath toys. The more fun your child has in the tub, the better! Bath toys will keep babies and toddlers happy (and distracted!) while you get them spick and span. Sensory toys, in particular, help encourage healthy development and learning that can strengthen key motor skills. Options like stacking and draining cups or light-up baubles are great for rousing their senses.

  • Pick toys that are easy to clean and dry. To prevent mold and mildew, bath toys should be air dried between each use. Soap scum and grime build up over time, so regular cleaning post-use should be a priority. To make life easier, purchase bath toys that dry fast or are dishwasher-safe.

  • Avoid squeezable toys with holes. These types of bath toys are notoriously hard to clean and can harbor mold. Moreover, opting for bath toys that are hermetically sealed—meaning they’re designed without holes—and are resistant to water retention (the culprit of mold proliferation) is the way to go. If you have trouble finding no-hole playthings, set your sights instead on toys with large openings or those that come apart, as they “can be easily drained, cleaned and dried,” says Emily Neese, co-founder of Bubbles & Joy, a bath toy subscription service.

  • Pay attention to materials. Babies and toddlers put everything in their mouths (both food and toys alike), squeezing and biting as a way to learn and explore—so when you’re on the hunt for entertainment, “it’s especially important to know what the bath toys you give your child are made of,” Neese says. She recommends looking for toys that are BPA-free and made from non-toxic materials like natural rubber.

Bath toys may be designed to keep babies and toddlers engaged and occupied, but they should never offer an excuse to leave your child unattended in the water. For safety reasons, always stay within arms reach of your little one during bathtime.

Best Bath Toys for Babies

Ready to shop for baby bath toys that’ll have your little bather giggling with glee? Here are some of our favorite options for the first 12 months. From floating boats to plush washcloth characters and more, here you’ll find bath toys to delight the youngest children.

Classic rubber duck with a twist

When it comes to picking out the best bath toys for babies, start with (modernized) basics, like the rubber ducky. This version of the classic toy serves as a temperature indicator for the bath, thanks to a blue disc on the bottom that tells you when the water is too hot for baby’s sensitive skin—not bad for just a few bucks! Plus, the infant bath toy is easy to grab and hold, not to mention watertight (see ya later, mildew).

Age: 0 months+

Interlocking caterpillar cups

Munchkin Caterpillar Spillers
Image: Munchkin

Stacking cups are a baby-approved activity out of the tub, so adding water just takes things to the next level. These baby bath toys come in eye-catching colors, and your little wave maven can connect them to create a cute caterpillar or stack them to build an impressive sea tower—learning hand-eye coordination along the way. Baby will undoubtedly have loads of fun scooping, draining and stacking this sweet bath toy set, and you’ll be able to nest it all together for compact storage once bathtime is over.

Age: 9 months+

Color-changing bath book

Mudpuppy Marine Life On the Move Color Magic Bath Book
Image: Walmart

Color-changing bath book Mudpuppy Marine Life on the Move Color Magic Bath Book If you have a little bookworm at home, then you’ll need to start building your bath library too! Mudpuppy has a number of tub-time titles that we absolutely love for their quirky illustrations and easy-to-follow storylines. All of the bathtime friends in this marine life page-turner perk up when their colors magically appear after getting wet.

Age: 0 to 4 years

Floating bath boat

Sophie la Girafe So'Pure Rubberwood Boat
Image: Maisonette
Buying Options

Sophie la Girafe is known for their teethers, but did you know the beloved French brand makes bath toys too? Made from unfinished hevea wood and natural rubber, this little sailboat will bob along on baby’s bath water. And, thanks to the baby-safe material, it’s safe for teething babies to chew on too. Bonus: Shop this item on Maisonette and take 10 percent off orders of $75 or more with code BUMP10 (valid for new customers only).

Age: 0 months+

Penguin puppet washcloth

Manhattan Toy Penny Penguin Scrub-a-Dubbie Washcloth and Bathing Mitt Puppet
Image: Maisonette

Narrate bathtime with this sweet penguin puppet. It’s made from cuddly cotton, and doubles as a washcloth, making it a perfect bathtime buddy for infants who start panicking as soon as they catch sight of soap and a regular cloth. Use it to both clean and comfort baby, and once the sudsy session is over, squeeze out the excess water and hang the arctic comrade up to dry using the convenient fabric loop. Best of all, it’s totally safe to throw in the washer and dryer.

Age: 0 months+

Scoop and spill boat

Babies love to explore their environment, especially when in the tub—and this boat bath toy lets them do just that. It’s designed with a spout, allowing baby to scoop and pour water during aquatic adventures. It’s also made from recycled plastic and free of BPA, PVC, phthalates or external coatings, making it both eco-friendly and completely safe for infants.

Age: 6 months+

Best Bath Toys for Toddlers

Neese says that “at around the one-year mark, children become curious—exploring and examining everything,” so at this point, it’s more important than ever to start lathering up their learning opportunities and love for the bath with some of the best bath toys for toddlers.

Best bath toys for 1-year-olds

By one year old, most babies can begin developing fine motor and problem-solving skills that they’ll use for the long haul. In order to foster this, Neese notes you’ll want to seek out “purposefully designed products with a child’s concentration and critical-thinking skills in mind.” Whether it’s a “bauble that comes apart and screws back together, cups with holes for sifting or sprinkling or vessels that pour and transfer water back and forth,” these simple-trick toys are wonderful basics to add to any bath.

Hungry whale bath toy

Looking for a bath toy that’ll spark their imagination and help strengthen hand-eye coordination? This BPA-free set includes three brightly colored sea creatures that don’t stand a chance when they’re eyed up by your toddler. Have them squeeze the tail fin to see the whopper mammal gobble everything up in its path. What we love even more than this fish-frenzy feast is how easily the toy opens up and dries after use.

Age: 12 months+

Water slide penguin toy

Fat Brain Toys Waddle Bobbers Bath Toy
Image: Walmart

Searching for an interactive bath toy? These adorable little puffins have weighted bases so kiddos can spin them, float them and send them zooming down the slide into the bubbles below. Since both the penguins and the iceberg are sealed, you don’t have to worry about them becoming waterlogged. What’s more, your little one will learn about buoyancy and motion in the midst of their imaginative play.

Age: 12 months+

Light-up bath toy

ZOO Light-Up Baby Bath Toy
Image: Skip Hop

Do unicorns like bath time? They sure do when they’re splashing around with your own little magic maker. Featuring water-activated multicolor lights, this adorable toy is soft and squeezable, and lights up when it gets wet. If your little one happens to prefer prehistoric creatures, SkipHop also has a dinosaur version that’s restocking soon.

Age: 12 months+

Sprinkle bath toys

Ubbi Cloud & Droplet Bath Toys
Image: Target
Buying Options
Target |$9.99

This whimsical raindrop and cloud team up as the ultimate scrub-a-dub duo for one-year-olds. Toddlers can fill up the toys by submerging them in water before uncovering the sprinkle holes to create a mini rain shower. Not only are they impossibly cute and perfectly sized for little hands, but with proper care, these bath toys won’t mold—just open them up and plop them in the top rack of the dishwasher for easy and effective cleaning.

Age: 12 months+

Bath tub basketball hoop

WowWee Pinkfong Baby Shark Official Bath Basketball
Image: Amazon
Buying Options
Amazon |$6.99

Basketball? Inside? With toddler bath toys like this, you might just become the coolest parent in town. The Baby Shark basketball hoop secures to glass or tile with suction cups and comes with three floating balls. Thankfully, if you end up misplacing any of the balls, you can easily sub in a ball or two from a ball pit if you have them lying around (that’s real-life advice from a happy mama!). The toddler tub toy also folds up for easy storage. If you ask us, it’s nothing but a slam dunk.

Age: 12 months+

Best bath toys for 2-year-olds

Bath play, as we’ve reiterated, is great for enriching toddlers’ development. It can encourage motor skills and nerve connection-building and even segue into language development. For this stage, Neese recommends sensory play and toys that engage your little one’s sight, touch, smell and more. She’s a big fan of “bath stickers that allow for play along the side of the tub or foaming bubble bath powder that can be scooped and mixed by your child to turn the water bright colors.”

Fishing rod bath toy

Munchkin Fishin’ Bath Toy
Image: Munchkin'

Whether or not your toddler goes on to love fishing, they can at least strengthen their hand-eye coordination by “catching” these super cute (and air-tight) magnetic bobbers with a mini fishing rod. The magnetic fishing hook easily attracts sea creatures (which can bob along in the bath on their own), and the handle is thoughtfully made to fit toddler hands. Listen for the fun clicking sounds when they reel in their catch!

Age: 2 years+

Foam bath stickers

Who else remembers foam bath stickers from the ‘90s? (Can’t just be us!) These wet-and-stick foam forms, in shapes like toucans and koala-climbing trees, allow children to create their own imaginary worlds right on the bathroom tiles. When wet, they’re easy to grab and stick to any smooth surface. The zebras and giraffes can gallop right on the edge of the tub too—whatever your kiddo desires.

Age: 2 years+

Washable bath crayons

Honeysticks Bath Crayons
Image: Maisonette

Drawing on the walls is usually frowned upon, but not when it happens in the tub! Made from a blend of pure New Zealand beeswax, soy wax and plant-based emulsifier, these jumbo crayons come in seven vibrant colors. Store them in the handy canister (equipped with a drain hole) that comes along with the set. Your amateur artists can get daring and doodle while their older siblings practice spelling or math, and when they’re done for the day, simply wash their creations away—yay for washable wizardry!

Age: 2 years+

Stacking cups

Green Sprouts Sprout Ware Stacking Cups
Image: Green Sprouts

Sometimes the simplest bath toys truly are the best. Case in point: These stackable cups by Green Sprouts. Made from plant-based plastic, the cups fit neatly inside one another and are numbered to encourage early counting skills. Plus, holes on the base let your kiddo create their very own sprinkler right there in the tub. While they can be used by babies as young as 6 months old, these cups will be a sure-fire hit with toddlers as they have the strength to fill them up before tipping them out.

Age: 6 months+

Playful pipe bath toy

Nuby Wacky Waterworks Interactive Bath Toy for Baby
Image: Amazon

Introduce your little one to STEM principles with this engaging bath toy by Nuby. This bath toy set attaches to tiles with nifty suction cups and includes a series of interlocking valves and pipes. Simply fill up the main reservoir and let your kid experiment with the water pressure by twisting the valves. Genius!

Age: 18 months+

Best bath toys for 3-year-olds

Imaginative play has been proven many times over to help boost children’s emotional, creative, linguistic and cognitive development. In the bath, a child is in the perfect setting for their “imagination to go to work,” says Neese. This is a great time to introduce “fun items like bath crayons or paints that allow them to flex their creative and autonomous muscles.” It’s also a wonderful turning point to channel some of their out-of-water engineering abilities and DIY prowess.

Scuba diver bath toy

Boon Marco Light-up Toddler Bath Toy
Image: Amazon
Buying Options

How cool is this color-changing toy by Boon? Let Marco the diver plunge into the water and watch as his helmet lights up to illuminate deep sea missions. Your busy 3-year-old will have tons of fun with this floating bath toy.

Age: 3 years+

Astronaut bath toy set

Nuby Awesome Astronaut Mirror Interactive Baby Toy Set for Fun Bath Time
Image: Amazon
Buying Options
Amazon |$12.05

The best bath toys for toddlers breed independence while still making bathtime fun. That’s why we’re all kinds of star-eyed over this astronaut-themed bath toy set for kids. It comes complete with a mirror, a robot “razor” and a spaceship toy. The mirror promotes self-awareness and good grooming habits, while the toys keep things playful.

Age: 3 years+

Lathering sponge animal

Spongelle Duck Sponge Animal
Image: Walmart
Buying Options
Walmart |$14

Speaking of independence, by 3 years old, your child might start saying, “Hey! I can do it myself!” when the time comes to scrub up and rinse off. If that’s the case, they can take things into their own hands—literally—with these fun animal-shaped sponges. Infused with a gentle, nourishing formula that includes chamomile extracts (and smells amazing), these brilliant buffers just need to be placed under water, squeezed to absorb and activate the lather and then massaged into the skin in a circular motion. Once they’re done, make sure to squeeze out the excess water and lay it out to dry—it’s good for up to 14 uses!

Age: 3 years+

Foam building blocks

Blockaroo Magnetic Foam Building Blocks
Image: Target

As your little one gets a little older, their curiosity and abilities are bound to grow—especially if they’re into building blocks. These expertly engineered, STEM-enriching foam bricks float and give kids the tools to build anything they set their minds to. Thanks to their innovative magnetic system, the pieces always connect and never repel—alleviating the frustration every threenager is known for. They even make a satisfying “click” sound when they’re put together, which helps them foster an understanding of cause and effect that transcends basic tactile learning. And whenever they need to be cleaned or sterilized, just pop them in the top rack of the dishwasher and they’re as good as new!

Age: 3 years+

Glow cubes

Glo Pals Water-Activated Light-Up Cubes for Sensory Play
Image: Target
Buying Options
Amazon |$34.95

We’ve watched the Toy Story Toons: Partysaurus Rex short on Disney+ enough times to know that a rave in the bath is just right on a school night (a preschool night, that is). Throw in a few of these colorful cubes (in purple, green, yellow and red) to turn your toddler’s tub into a riveting light show. Each Pal has a face and a different personality, and when placed in liquid, the faces project onto their surroundings, making for a series of fun interactions. Best of all, you’ll never have to use the “you’re going to turn into a raisin” ploy to get them out of the tub again—just drain the tub and the toys will turn off automatically.

Age: 3 years+

Bubble whisk

HABA Bubble Bath Whisk Blue
Image: Target

Whisk up some fun with this bath toy by HABA. Simple yet sturdy, this toddler-sized mixer can be used to make some whirlpool fun in the tub. Submerge the whisk in water, turn the crank handle and watch as the bubbles start to emerge and pop.

Age: 3 years+

Expert sources:

Emily Neese is a mom of three and the co-founder of Bubbles & Joy, which offers bathtime box subscriptions featuring hand-picked, age-based bath toys and activities that are mold-free, BPA-free and made of natural ingredients and materials.

American Academy of Pediatrics, Bathing Your Baby, March 2020

save article

Next on Your Reading List

Article removed.
Article removed.
Name added. View Your List