Soap and water still the best.

While I am unsure of the necessity or even the effectiveness of Universal Toy Cleaner, I see no reason not to use it, and it is a relatively cheap 'insurance' policy against germs. While I would, and have, used only soap and water, I would NEVER use only Universal Toy Cleaner for my toys. "Insurance" and the fact that this is so similar to all the other cleaner is not enough for me to give more than 3 stars.
Published:
Pros:
Easy to use and control
Seems to be effective or at least has ingredients known to be effective.
Cons:
Some fairly harsh ingredients.
Not convinced a dedicated toy cleaner is necessary.
Rating by reviewer:
3
extremely useful review
While it is rather hard to get excited and write a review about a toy cleaner, Cal Exotics Universal Toy Cleaner is a fine choice if you want a secondary cleaning method for your toys. You should still use warm soap and water to thoroughly clean your toys, and it's also a very good idea to do a simple rinse after using the toy cleaner to help rinse off the chemicals and to help prevent any irritation they may cause. This is especially true with an insertable toy.

Still, I am torn on this product (and all dedicated toy cleaners for that matter) as I am not convinced it is necessary or even if it actually works. I would be happier with this product if they called it "Supplemental Toy Cleaner" as it seems inefficient to use this product when I am still going to wash our toys with soap and water at least once after each use anyway. That being said, I see no reason NOT to use it as the possible risks are, in my opinion, outweighed by the possible benefits. Frankly, it only takes one lonely little bacterium missed by soap and water to cause an infection and if there is a remote chance this product will zap that little bugger, I am going to use it. The price is negligible so why not?

The product comes in a small spritzer/spray bottle with a very effective spray head. I have had very little problem spraying and no leaks with this bottle, and it gets stored laying flat on its side in our toy box. The bottle very clearly states "Universal Toy Cleaner" so I would not call it discreet, but I would bet this is an item that could sit on your vanity with other toiletries and people would not even look twice at it. The ingredients (listed below) are also clearly listed on the bottle which is a nice touch.

The product itself is clear and colorless with a faint odor that reminds me of glass cleaner (that's probably the propylene glycol). The product does show a very slight propensity to bubble/foam when sprayed on the toy but that is a non-issue for me as everything gets rinsed off immediately.

Cal Exotics claims this is safe for all toys and I have no reason to dispute this claim although I have not tried it on all of the common toy materials.

Product Ingredients:
Sodium C 14-16 Olefin Sulfonate
Disodium Lauroamphodiacetate
Sodium Trideceth Sulfate
Cocamidopropyl Betaine
Propylene Glycol
Triclosan (Antibacterial)
Tetrasodium EDTA
Citric Acid
Methylchlorisothiazolinone
Methylisothiazolinone (Biocide)

You may want to search Wiki for these ingredients to get a better idea of what (as claimed by Wiki authors anyway) these ingredients do, etc. I do suggest that you remember that the toxicity and irritation levels of chemicals are very, very, very concentration dependent. Most, if not all, of these ingredients are found in other products like shampoos, soaps etc. which you may already be using. A quick glance at the other toy cleaners available here at EF shows practically identical ingredients (some variation) across the products.

I am somewhat concerned about some of these ingredients and the possibility of helping develop antibacterial resistant bacteria (especially the Triclosan), but I think the possibility is slight. Still, it is a concern that everyone should consider when thinking about using an antibacterial agent of any kind for any purpose.
Experience
We have had no issues with this product. We have not had any irritation (and I didn't think to rinse the toys after the first few uses) and the cleaner has not harmed any of our toys.

Our typical usage....

1) Wash toy with warm/hot soapy water
2) Spray with Universal Toy Cleaner
3) Let sit for a few seconds
4) 'Massage' Universal Toy Cleaner into/onto toy
5) Rinse with hot water (I have also rewashed with hot water and soap again, depending on my mood)
6) Let dry.
Follow-up commentary
It is perhaps harsh to say I no longer like the Anti-bacterial Toy Cleaner; I think 'ambivalent' is a more accurate way to describe my feelings. I rarely use this as I believe warm soapy water is just as, if not more, effective as this toy cleaner. This is especially true since I end up washing the toy a second time with warm soapy water anyway to ensure the toy cleaner has not left a residue behind.

It just does not seem worth the trouble anymore.
This content is the opinion of the submitting contributor and is not endorsed by EdenFantasys.com
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Comments
  • Eva Schwaltz
    Eva Schwaltz  
    Very good review, thank you.
  • married with children
    married with children  
    thanks for the review. I dont really see a point to toy cleaners. We have not had one problem with soap and water.
  • Buffgator
    Buffgator  
    My questioning the usefulness of toy cleaners in general, not just this specific one, made this a really tough review to write.
  • SiNn
    SiNn  
    awesome informative review i am courious about toy cleaners too seems antibacterial soap and a rag would work just as well
  • The Mother of a SiNner
    The Mother of a SiNner  
    great review
  • Blooddragon
    Blooddragon  
    Nice review!
  • Apirka
    Apirka  
    Thank you for sharing! I find that soap and water work best as well.
  • Ivy Wilde
    Ivy Wilde  
    Thanks for the review.
  • Michelle Conner
    Michelle Conner  
    nice review
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