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Tips on Buying Coloring Materials for Toddlers

by T Akery | October 7th, 2011 | Infants/Toddlers

Toddlers love to color. It doesn’t matter whether it is the furniture, walls, paper, or themselves. They will leave their mark upon the house. However, those creative marks don’t have to be permanent if you are aware of what you are buying. Sometimes, the cheapest crayons aren’t always the best ones for easy clean-up.

Crayons should be non-toxic and washable. Unfortunately, manufacturers have different definitions of washable. Before you automatically believe the advertising on the packaging, check out the reviews by other parents for the product. You want something that is easily removed with soap and water. Be sure to read the fine print on the packaging for specific instructions regarding removal. If you aren’t sure, test out the crayons beforehand on an unseen surface and then see how easy it is to clean. You don’t want to give your toddler any crayon that you personally can’t clean off.

Markers at this age are best avoided. But if they come as presents or they are needed for an older child, you may need to store them on a very high shelf. Avoid buying smelly markers. Those are far too tempting for toddlers to put in their mouths. Anything that contains the word permanent should just be put back on the shelves. But if you really, really need a permanent market, pick up a bottle of clear hair spray like White Rain. The hair spray can erase most of the marks left by a permanent marker if you catch it early enough. Stick with markers that color only on certain paper.

Colored pencils should be washable as well. An eraser should eradicate most marks. However, the eraser itself can leave some residue. You will need to find an eraser that erases cleanly. The kids’ erasers aren’t always the best type to use for this type of clean up.

Paints should be washable as well. It is best to clean up paint while it is still wet. A wet rag usually does the trick. The best policy is to make certain things are covered prior to uncapping the paint lid. Be careful with clothes as well. Not all washable paint will come out in one washing. If the paint is still evident, don’t put the clothes in the dryer. You might want to check the online reviews for ease of clean up — and always check the fine print on paints to find out if they are truly washable.

Toddlers love coloring all over the place. But their marks don’t have to be permanent if you know what coloring materials are best for them to use. The biggest tip on buying coloring materials is to find products you can easily clean up after the damage has been done.

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