In Depth Baby Product Reviews Led by a Pediatrician

The 4 Best Bath Toys

We tested bath toys from Munchkin, Green Toys, First Years, and more to find the best for bath time
gearlab tested logo
Best Bath Toy
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Our Top Picks

By Molly Bradac ⋅ Senior Review Editor
Friday May 5, 2023

Want to boost your child's bath time fun with a new bath toy? Check out our lineup of today's top 8 bath toys. Beyond washing up, bath time can be another way for your child to learn and explore through play. However, if you're like us, we don't want to sacrifice convenience and prefer bath toys that are easier to clean and dry and don't take up too much space in the bathroom. While hands-on testing the competition, we kept these elements in mind, plus the fun factor for kids. So, bring on the shriveled fingers and toes, and enjoy some fun in the tub with an exciting bath toy that meets your child's needs and your budget.

Complete your baby's bathtime routine with the best baby shampoo, baby lotion, our favorite baby oils for baby massage, and the best baby nail clippers.

Editor's Note: We updated this bath toy review on May 5, 2023, to ensure all of the baby bath toys are available and reflect accurate pricing.


Best Overall Bath Toy

Munchkin Fishin' Bath Toy

Age: 2+ years | Material: Plastic
Three sea creatures to catch and release
Sea creatures sealed from water
Fishing pole and bobber have holes and small nooks
The line does not reel up

Catch and release with the Munchkin Fishin' Bath Toy. Using the colorful fishing rod, your child can catch the three magnetic underwater sea creatures that float around the tub. The reel makes an audible clicking sound when in use, making it sound similar to an actual fishing pole and amping up the bath time fun. We appreciate that this bath toy can help strengthen hand-eye coordination as your little one endeavors to catch the "swimming" sea creatures. And we love that you can also use it in a water play station outside of the tub.

While the sea creatures are sealed and prevent water from entering, the pole and bobber have holes that collect water, which isn't ideal. From our experience, a good shake will help the water escape, but with nooks and crannies, we think there is a possibility that the remaining water may grow mold. Also, depending on your little one's knowledge of fishing, they might be disappointed that the line does not reel up like a real fishing pole. Overall, we think your toddler will be "hooked" on this bath toy, and we recommend it to those ready for some bathtub fishing.

best overall bath toy
Catch and release with the Munchkin Fishin' Bath Toy and three adorable sea creatures.
Credit: Abriah Wofford


Best Eco-Friendly Submarine

Green Toys Submarine

Age: 6m+ | Material: Plastic
Can float or submerge
Handle easy to hold
Propeller spins
Cannot dismantle sub vessel to clean

Explore the depths of the tub with the Green Toys Submarine. This sub can submerge or float, the propeller spins by giving it a turn, and water can pass through the toy's portholes and nose. The top handle makes it easy to hold and maneuver around the tub. It is 100% recycled plastic, free of BPA, PVC, and phthalates, plus it contains no external coatings. We appreciate Green Toy's commitment to manufacturing products from recycled material, keeping some plastic from ending up in the landfill.

The packaging states, "Toy opens for easy cleaning," and we did not find this to be the case during testing. The blue handle on top opens, but we were unsuccessful at opening the sub vessel. With limited view inside the ship, we feel this hinders proper cleaning and inspection of potential mold. Rinsing and thoroughly drying this product after each use and an occasional deep clean will help prevent mold growth. Despite the lack of access to the ship's inside, we think an older baby or toddler will appreciate this sub for bathtub adventures and imaginary play.

bath toy - best eco-friendly submarine
The Green Toy Submarine can float or submerge, plus offers a propeller that spins.
Credit: Abriah Wofford


Budget-Friendly Bath Toy

The First Years Stack Up Cup Toys

Age: 6m+ | Material: Plastic
Fill, pour, stack, or nest
Easy to dry
Nest for easy storage
Eight cups to keep track of

Don't be fooled by this toy's simplicity; The First Years Stack Up Cup Toys are a classic toy that will satisfy your child's desire to fill, pour, stack, and nest in the bathtub. The set includes eight colorful cups; each container has one or more holes to scoop up water and create a waterfall. We also appreciate that the cups are quick to clean and dry and take up minimal space when not in use.

We don't see any significant drawbacks to this option, except that there's more to look after with multiple cups. Fortunately, the set includes a flower-shaped clip to help keep the cups together and reduce the chance of misplacing one. Nevertheless, this toy is budget-friendly and offers endless possibilities for fun. We recommend this inexpensive option to any family with babies or toddlers.

budget-friendly bath toy
The First Years Stack Up Cup Toys come in a variety of colors and sizes to satisfy your child's desire to fill, pour, stack, and nest.
Credit: Abriah Wofford


Best for STEM Education

Boon Cogs Water Gears

Age: 12m+ | Material: Plastic, Silicone
Spin individually or link together
Turn by hand or with water
Suction power is not always dependable
Nooks and crannies to clean

The Boon Cogs Water Gears are five colorful gear-shaped toys that suction to the bath or shower wall and turn by hand or water. They can spin individually or link together. Our preschool-age tester had fun creating various gear configurations and learning how to suction them to the wall. To clean, rinse the gears after each use and allow them to air dry completely. Occasionally, wash them with warm soapy water, and we suggest keeping an eye out for mold.

Sometimes the suction power can be weak, and one or two gears will fall to the floor. The gears also have some nooks and crannies that require occasional cleaning, and we think a small brush helps with this task. We recommend this product for a budding engineer or a curious youngster who will enjoy getting these gears to spin.

bath toy - best for stem education
The Boon Cogs Water Gears are colorful and can spin individually or together.
Credit: Abriah Wofford


Best Mold-Resistant Toy

Munchkin Bath Bobbers

Age: 6m+ | Material: Silicone, Plastic
Simple yet entertaining
Easy to clean and quick to dry
May float out of arms reach depending on tub size

Colorful and adorable, the Munchkin Bath Bobbers come in a set of two, and they float, bob, and spin around the tub like a synchronized duo. Our baby and toddler testers enjoyed playing with these creatures, bringing smiles and giggles to bath time. We also appreciate that the bobbers are sealed, meaning there are absolutely no holes, nooks, or crannies for mold to grow - score! So if you're in the market for an easy-to-clean bath toy, this one is worth consideration.

Although we don't see any significant drawbacks to this bath toy, our only observation is that the toys can easily float away in a large tub out of the child's reach. Our toddler was able to scoot after the toy, but our baby could not. We recommend this toy to families with babies or toddlers looking for a fun toy that is easy to dry and clean for parents.

bath toy - the munchkin bath bobbers are adorable and completely water-tight.
The Munchkin Bath Bobbers are adorable and completely water-tight.
Credit: Abriah Wofford


Best Stackable Boats

Boon Stacking Boats

Age: 10m+ | Material: Plastic
Float, scoop, pour, or drain
Stack for easy storage
Easy to dry
Some children may need help stacking

Instead of stacking cups, consider the Boon Stacking Boats as an alternative. These boats (a set of five) float, scoop, pour and create a waterfall effect for endless entertainment. They're super easy to keep clean, thanks to no cracks or holes for mold to grow, and the plastic material makes them quick to dry by air or towel. Plus, as a stackable toy, they don't take up much room and are easy to stash when bath time is over.

This toy has no significant drawbacks, and our only observation is that some children may need help to differentiate the sizes to stack. We recommend the Boon Stacking Boats to families with babies or toddlers interested in an alternative to stacking cups.

bath toy - the boon stacking boats bring a pop of color and fun to bath time as...
The Boon Stacking Boats bring a pop of color and fun to bath time as they float, scoop, and drain water.
Credit: Abriah Wofford


Fun Bath Toss-Game Toy

Nuby Floating Octopus

Age: 18m+ | Material: Silicone
No holes for mold to grow
Easy to clean
Toss-rings too small for young babies

Play a toss game with the Nuby Floating Octopus. This toy is water-tight with no holes, nooks, or crannies for mold to hide, making it easy to clean and dry for parents. We believe this toy is fun for imaginary play, and we appreciate that this product will help your little one practice hand-eye coordination as your toddler places or throws the toss-rings onto the octopus's legs.

In our opinion, the hoopla toss-rings are too small and not suitable for young babies as our baby tester tried putting the fish in his mouth, which concerned us as a potential choking risk. The manufacturer states an age range of 18 months and older. We recommend using this fun toy without the toss-rings initially until your baby has passed the stage of putting objects in their mouth, and, of course, even later, only under close supervision. We think the octopus is fun and whimsical, so we don't consider the toss-ring part essential for your toddler to enjoy this bath toy.

bath toy - the nuby floating octopus has no nooks, crannies, or holes to cause...
The Nuby Floating Octopus has no nooks, crannies, or holes to cause concern about mold growth.
Credit: Abriah Wofford


Good Pull and Go Toy

Skip Hop Pull and Go Submarine Monkey

Age: 12m+ | Material: Plastic
Zips across tub
Cannot see inside holes
Requires extra effort to make sure fully dry

The Skip Hop Pull and Go Submarine Monkey will zip across the tub with a pull of the string. The submarine does not fully submerge. Instead, it floats. The sub's bright colors and adorable captain monkey is eye-catching for cuteness. This toy entertained our toddler tester, particularly with its ability to zip and zoom through bubbles. Our baby tester, too little to pull the string to activate the propeller, watched with a smile. The manufacturer mentions that this toy is excellent for strengthening fine motor skills needed to pull the line and teaches them cause and effect.

The toy has holes to let water through and allow the toy to sink a bit. However, we cannot access or see inside the holes to monitor potential mold growth. When you remove the toy from the tub, water collects in the holes, and it may need a good shake or flip from side to side to help water escape. Therefore, we think this product requires extra air-drying time compared to other products in our review. We believe babies or toddlers will enjoy watching this monkey ride around the tub if you don't mind the extra effort to clear it of water.

bath toy - with a pull of the string to activate the propeller, the skip hop...
With a pull of the string to activate the propeller, the Skip Hop Pull and Go Submarine Monkey will cruise around the tub.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Tip: Unfortunately, mold and mildew love moisture, and they can develop quickly. Once bath time is over, first rinse, squeeze or drain water from bath toys. Plus, allow them to dry thoroughly.

bath toy - each product in our review was purchased and experienced hands-on...
Each product in our review was purchased and experienced hands-on testing.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Why You Should Trust Us

The BabyGearLab team has been testing various baby gear over the past decade, purchasing and testing each product with real families and children. Our extensive knowledge and unbiased analysis provide the information and details you need to make an informed decision. For baby bath toys, we used our prior experience with our little ones to choose toys we knew would be compelling and fun for little ones in the bath. We gave special consideration to those with engaging designs and innovative materials.

Leading our review is Molly Bradac, Senior Review Editor, as well as a nanny and Newborn Care Specialist with over 14 years of childcare experience. To assess which contenders are real standouts for bathtime play, we also enlisted the help of multiple little testers, ranging in age from six months old to preschool.

The Nuby Floating Octopus with 3 Hoopla Rings has three smaller...
The Nuby Floating Octopus with 3 Hoopla Rings has three smaller rings that would not be suitable for a younger child that still puts objects in their mouth.
The Skip Hop Pull and Go Submarine Monkey is easy for a toddler to...
The Skip Hop Pull and Go Submarine Monkey is easy for a toddler to pull, but may be challenging for a younger child.

Analysis and Test Results

We evaluated each product's performance to rank the competition, paying close attention to ease of cleaning, looking for areas that may trap moisture, and easy storage when not in use.

bath toy - each product in our review differs in dry time as some have holes...
Each product in our review differs in dry time as some have holes that trap water and require extra effort.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Ease of Cleaning and Drying

The perfect breeding ground for mold and bacteria is a wet and warm environment, and depending on a toy's design and care, they can become mold victims. Therefore, we prefer a simple bath toy to clean and quick to dry.

Some toys in our lineup that fit this profile include the Munchkin Bath Bobbers, Boon Stacking Boats, and The First Years Stack Up Cup Toys. These toys are of one-piece construction with few nooks or crannies, making visual inspection for grime simple, plus towel drying quick. However, toys that trap water despite an effort to shake and remove moisture, or toys with nooks, crannies, and inaccessible areas, can make cleaning more challenging and potentially lead to mold growth. Some toys in our lineup that leave us questioning cleanliness include the Green Toys Submarine, Munchkin Fishin' Bath Toy, and the Skip Hop Pull and Go Submarine. These toys either lack accessibility and visibility to adequately clean or have parts that collect and trap moisture. While we believe cleanliness is essential, we understand that some children are attracted to toys with more parts. We suggest keeping ease of cleaning and drying in mind when selecting a toy, and regardless of which one you choose, try your best to allow toys to dry thoroughly after bath time, decreasing the chance of mold growth.

bath toy - the green toy submarine has an inaccessible inside that is...
The Green Toy Submarine has an inaccessible inside that is challenging to clean by hand.
Credit: Abriah Wofford


For this metric, we want to know which products are easy to store, an essential bit of information for families with small bathroom spaces or those who would like to take back their bathtub space for a spa night. Of all the contenders, we tip our hats to the Boon Stacking Boats and The First Years Stack Up Cup Toys, which are champs in this realm. They nest within each other and conserve storage space. However, the Green Toys Submarine is one of the largest, followed by the Munchkin Fishin' Bath Toy, which is long yet slim and includes three sea creatures to manage and keep together. Alternatively, the Boon Cogs Water Gears suction to the bath or shower wall, requiring no storage space.

Warning: Never leave your baby unattended during bath time. Plan your bath ahead of time and ensure that you have everything you need before starting the bath. If you forget something, take your baby with you to get the missing item.

bath toy - the munchkin fishin' bath toy is one of the longest toys in our...
The Munchkin Fishin' Bath Toy is one of the longest toys in our review, yet slim, with three sea creatures to keep track of.
Credit: Abriah Wofford


A baby's full-time job is to play, and bathtime is a super fun playground for little ones to learn and explore. From imaginary play with water-loving creatures to filling and pouring with cups, we feel confident there is a bath toy in our lineup that will meet your needs and budget, providing ample fun every time your baby hits the water. Soon enough, your little one will be splish-splashing and enjoying bath time, no matter which toys you choose.

Molly Bradac