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How to Clean a Decorated Pacifier

Kaida Heart PHPacifiers Tutorials

Would you throw a leather jacket into a washing machine? How about putting grandma's good china dishes in the dishwasher? Of course not! These are specialty items that require special care and cleaning.

Believe it or not, so are decorated pacifiers. Whether you didn't know this or already were aware but weren't sure where to start, this article is for you. In this guide, I will be outlining a few methods to care for and clean decorated pacifiers. However, these methods can also be used for similarly decorated items.

To start, let me tell you some of the things you should never do with decorated pacifiers.

  1. Do not store them in very high or low temperatures. - both temperatures that are too hot and temperatures that are too cold can be incredibly damaging to the decorations on the pacifier. Hot temperatures can cause paints and adhesives to warp or melt off. Cold temperatures can cause paint or adhesives to dry out, shrink, and flake off. You want to store them at room temperature, which is defined as between 15 °C (59 °F) and 25 °C (77 °F).
  2. Do not use a chemical solvent or any substance that is toxic to humans - a chemical solvent is a chemical that can dissolve other substances. While solvents may be useful in cleaning grime in your tub, you do not want to put them on your pacifier. They may not only dissolve the paint or adhesive but the plastic as well. Examples of solvents include bleach, vinegar, and ammonia. As for the use of cleaners that are toxic if ingested, just remember that the pacifier will go in your mouth.
  3. Do not submerge or soak them in water, or expose them to steam - if left in water, the water can be absorbed into the paint or adhesive and push it away from the surface of the pacifier. This will cause it to warp and peel off. Steam can do this with paint and adhesive as well. Additionally, material decals such as bows or fake flowers can grow mold if not dried properly after soaked.
  4. If it has decals, do not attempt to disassemble it - rhinestones, bows, charms, and other decals can be accidentally pulled off when disassembling a pacifier. Of course, this wouldn't apply if your pacifier is only painted and doesn't have any decals on it.
  5. Lastly, do not try to scratch or pick at decorated surfaces - you could accidentally scratch or pick off paint and/or decals. Be gentle with your pacifier, okay?

Now that we have covered what not to do, we can move on to what you can do when cleaning a decorated pacifier. There are a few different methods you can use depending on how dirty it actually is and which part of the pacifier needs to be cleaned.

Method 1: If your pacifier just needs a rinse, go ahead and run the teat under some lukewarm water. Make sure not to use water that is hot enough to create steam and be careful not to get the front of the shield wet. Afterward, you can use a towel to dry it or let it air dry.

Method 2: Perhaps you dropped it on the floor. Or maybe it just hasn't been cleaned in awhile. Whatever the case, you find yourself needing to sanitize it. In this case, you can simply dip the teat in a nontoxic, antibacterial solution for 45 - 60 seconds. Examples are hydrogen peroxide or rubbing alcohol.

After you've sanitized the teat you can rinse it the same way described in the first method. Then you can dry it with a towel or let it air dry. Remember to keep the front of the shield from getting wet.
If you would like to clean not only the teat but the area around it as well then you are looking for the third method. For this, you will need to find a soft-bristled brush such as a makeup brush or toothbrush.
Method 3: Take your soft-bristled brush and then do one of two things. Either wet it with plain water or with the nontoxic, antibacterial solution mentioned before. After you've done this you can brush the back of the shield, being careful not to get the front of the shield wet. Re-soak your brush as many times as needed. If you used a nontoxic, antibacterial solution, brush the back of the shield again with plain water to rinse it. Once clean you can carefully towel dry it or let it air dry.
This wraps up your general cleaning methods. However, there's still one thing that needs to be addressed. The front of the shield.
I know I've been saying not to get the front of the shield wet, and really, you shouldn't. It does have to be cleaned at times though. The front is not a magically dust or dirt free zone, as cool as that would be. But with the front of the pacifier being where all the decoration is, you should only clean it if you have to and be careful when you do.
Cleaning the front: you are going to want to get that soft-bristled brush from before. This time you will only use plain water. Gently brush the front of the shield to remove any dust, dirt, or grime. Do not scrub at anything. The dampness of the brush will remove whatever it is if you gently brush it enough times. Just have patience. When it is clean you can "dab" it with a towel to dry it or let it air dry.
Congratulations, you have successfully cleaned your decorated pacifier without causing any harm! You can also keep your pacifier clean by keeping it in a case or small box when not in use to prevent it from gathering dust.
If you have any other questions or concerns about the care and/or cleaning of your pacifier, you are welcome to contact me and I will do my best to address your concerns and guide you through the cleaning process.


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