10 of the best bath toys

We pick the most fun toys for splashing around the bath with – suitable for boys and girls from 3 months up

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How do you choose which bath toys are best for your child’s age and stage – and which ones will keep your little one entertained for more than 3 seconds flat?
While a 3-month-old will love watching you make bubbles pop and water sprinkle, a 3-year-old is going to be more focused on things they can stack and build, and fill and pour themselves.

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With that in mind, we’ve been testing a whole load of bath toys with a range of children under the age of 4, as well as with parents and toy experts, to find out which ones kept them smiling – and splashing – the most.

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1. Skip Hop Zoo Stack and Pour Buckets, £12 – best for simple all-round fun

Age: 9 months+

Awards: MadeForMums Toy Awards 2019 Best Bath Toy – Gold

What it is: A set of colourful buckets that can add all sorts of fun to the bath.

Why we love it: Sometimes the simple toys are the best, and that’s certainly the case with these fun bathtime buckets from Skip Hop Zoo.

Bright and engaging, they feature jolly smiley animal faces on their sides and cute little handles. They easily fit together and pull apart and are suitable for children of all ages from 9 months.

Lauren, MFM tester and mum to 11-month-old Cienna, said: “These are great for the bath or beach. My little girl loved playing with them and exploring them with her hands and mouth. The fun zoo patterns are great to use for entertainment and teaching animal noises too.”

If you’ve got older toddlers, these buckets may not keep them entertained for a huge amount of time, and you may prefer to buy something like the Vtech Splash & Play Elephant (see lower down our list) which has more going on. But for little ones they are a great purchase and a handy addition to your arsenal of toys.

Available from: Amazon, Boots and Early Learning Centre

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2. Tomy Spin and Splash Octopals, £12.99 – best for splashing

Age: 12 months+

Awards: MadeForMums Toy Awards 2019 Best Bath Toy – Joint Silver

What is it: A bright toy that you stick to the side of your bath, featuring spinning octopuses which pour water in different ways.

Why we love it: Things that spin and splash water are always a hit with little ones and Tomy’s Spin and Splash Octopals is certainly a good buy.

Our judges for the 2019 Toy Awards loved how their children engaged with the spinning octopals and learnt how the toy worked.

MFM tester Alysia Leigh, who’s a mum to 16-month-old Hallie, said: “We loved this toy and really enjoyed testing it. I think it’s very good value for money and a lovely bath toy for little ones. The bright colours really engaged my daughter and she got very excited when playing with it and squealed with delight.”

Just bear in mind that it may get a little repetitive for older babies though, who may prefer something like the Toomie Turtle Bath Salon.

Available from: John Lewis, Smyths Toys and Very

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3. Vtech Splash & Play Elephant, £21.99 – best for added value

Age: 12 months+

What is it: A singing elephant that sticks to the side of your bath and squirts water from its trunk. It has all sorts of accessories, from manipulative beads, a spring back seahorse, a spinning starfish and a wobbling water container to a twisting foot, a sliding leg and a scoop accessory.

Why we love it: There’s so much to love about this toy – with all its added elements, your kids are bound to be amused every bathtime.

Our testers were fascinated by the light-up snorkel button that you press to hear phrases and sounds and as it features 4 sing-along songs and 15 melodies, you won’t find yourself getting too frustrated at having it on repeat.

This elephant has got much more going on than some of the other toys on this list (such as the stacking cups and teething toys mentioned), but it does come at a higher price – in fact, this is nearly £10 more than the Tomy Spin and Splash Octopals.

If you want all-singing, all-splashing bath play, though, this is it.

Available from: Amazon, Boots or Argos

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4. Infantino Plug and Squirt, £9.99 – best for easy cleaning

Age: 6 months+

Awards: MadeForMums Toy Awards 2019 Best Bath Toy – Joint Silver

What it is: A set of 4 bathtime characters which you can pull apart and snap back together in different combinations.

Why we love it: Your little ones will love squirting water out of these fun bathtime characters, which encourage all sorts of imaginative play. Switch and swap the colourful heads and bottoms of the turtle, octopus, sea horse and frog and create silly characters for endless delight.

Our judges in the 2019 Toy Awards raved about these toys, which resulted in them scooping a silver accolade.

MFM tester Lyndsay Daw, mum to 9-month-old Grace, said: “I think they are great and the fact they come apart is brilliant. Bath toys generally only have a small hole and so quickly become mouldy but you can open these up to air them and keep them fresh. They also feel durable, well-made and soft to the touch.”

These are fairly simple toys (they’re not like the all-singing and all-dancing Vtech Splash & Play Elephant or Toomie Turtle Bath Salon), but they will keep little ones occupied.

Available from: Amazon

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5. Splash About Splash Jacks, £9.99 – best for teething babies

Age: 3 months – 12 months

Awards: MadeForMums Toy Awards 2019 Best Bath Toy – Bronze

What it is: A teething bathtime toy made from all-natural rubber.

Why we love it: Specifically designed for teething babies in the bath, this colourful toy stands out from the crowd. It showcases plenty of thoughtful touches – it’s made from all-natural rubber and free from toxins, and has a unique ergonomic shape ideal for little fingers, with nodules perfectly designed for sore gums. It also has no air hole – which stops water entering the toy and mould from building up.

MFM tester Laura, who’s mum to 8-month old Lola, said: “My daughter really enjoyed bopping these under water in the bath and trying to catch them as they floated around her in the paddling pool. They work fantastically as teethers out of the water and are obviously very satisfying to chew on as she can get the little nodules right to the back of her mouth.”

Just bear in mind, they are quite a simple toy and they don’t provide quite as much entertainment as, say, the Spin and Splash Octopals.

Available from: SplashAbout and Swimbabes

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6. Toomie Turtle Bath Salon, £19.99 – best for role play

Age: 18 months+

What is it: A hairdressing turtle with a little water-squirter octopus friend. Put the octopus in his seat, pour bubble-bath foam into the turtle’s flip-up head and then pull his arm to give the octopus a silly hairstyle. Comes with cup, comb, and suction cups.

Why we love it: It’s very colourful and action-packed. There’s always laughs to be hard with bubble foam – and this turtle definitely got our testers giggling.

Chantelle, mum to Scarlett-Rae, 23 months, said: “My daughter loves this and even wanted to play with it out of the bath. She knows the word brush and says, ‘I brush my hair’ and makes the sound the spray would make! She loves bubbles, so likes that she can produce them through pulling the arm down.”

Like the Vtech Splash & Play Elephant, there’s lots going on and it’s definitely better for slightly older kids who may need more to entertain them than just buckets or squirting toys.

Available from: AmazonMothercare and Boots

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7. Jumbo Games Peppa Pig 4-in1 Bath Time Jigsaw Puzzles, £10.98 – best for Peppa fans

Age: 3+

What is it: A set of 2-piece, 3-piece and 4-piece shaped foam jigsaw puzzles, featuring Peppa and her friends.

Why we love it: These foam tiles are big and bright and easy to stick to the bath tub – and just as easy to peel off again. They’re simple to clean and come in a plastic carry case with a drip hole at the bottom.

Puzzles aren’t necessarily toys you associate with bathtime (unlike those which require water to play with like the Infantino’s Plug and Squirt toys), but this is a great way to keep little ones occupied, and, well, it’s Peppa… (enough said!)

Available from: Amazon

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8. Skip Hop Full Up Bee Fountain, £10 – best for a cute design

Age: 9 months+

What is it: A great fill-up-and-spill water shower toy with 2 easy-to-grab handles in a super cute bee design.

Why we love it: We really rated this toy’s friendly face and grazable handles and the very gentle spill of cascading water that comes out. The fact it’s made from PVC and phthalate-free materials is also a huge bonus.

It’s lovely and soothing and looks really cute too. You could probably get the same sort of fun from stacking cups, but the design makes this product stand out.

Available from: AmazonJojo Maman Bebe and Kidly

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9. Water flutes, £4.95 – best for musical kids

Age: 3+

What is it: A colourful set of plastic flutes that you can fill up to different levels with water and then then blow through to ‘play’ different notes. Comes with 5 colour-coded waterproof music sheets.

Why we love it: Our child testers loved the whole process of filling up the pipes and then playing the notes. Most of them found playing an actual tune (following the music sheets) pretty tricky and said, actually, just tooting around ‘freestyle’ is way more fun.

It does require a bit more brain power than some of the other toys listed here, so is better suited to older toddlers, but musical kids will love it.

It’s also a really reasonable price – at only £4.95, it’s the cheapest bathtime toy in this list.

Available from: Amazon and Mulberry Bush

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10. Bloopies, £12.99 – best for imaginative play

Age: 3+

What is it: A 19cm bath-time doll kitted out in swimming costume, snorkel and flippers that squirts water from her or his mouth and snorkel when you press her or his tummy. Choose from 6 different characters (4 girls; 2 boys).

Why we love it: These fun characters offer lots of great opportunities for imaginative play and we were overwhelmed by the hugely positive response from our child testers on this one. There’s obviously something slightly very exciting about a doll squirting water from its mouth.

Maseline, 3, said: “This is awesome. I love her – she’s going to be my best friend.” This is good option for slightly older children who may soon get bored of more simple toys such as stacking cups or teething toys, but bear in mind that they’re not as easy to keep clean as other bathtime products like the Infantino squirting toys.

Available from: Amazon, Argos and Smyths Toys

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