It is a fact that the most loved dolls in everyone's doll collections get played with the most often – and at some point need a good clean. Luckily, vinyl is one of the easiest materials to care for and keep looking fresh.
One of the best (and easiest) ways to clean your doll is with a baby wipe or a damp cloth. If your doll has been particularly well loved and needs a bit more attention to bring her sparkle back, you can also use a soft tooth brush to remove some of the more stubborn marks. Make sure it is a soft one, though, as harder bristles may scratch the vinyl. If your doll is a vintage doll, make sure to do a patch test first on an unobtrusive area so make sure you don't damage the surface,
If marks still remain, use a small amount of bicarbonate of soda on the tooth brush. Be careful around painted sections because even a mild abrasive can rub off paint. Once you are done with the bicarbonate of soda, wipe it off with plain water and make sure to gently pat dry.
Never use a rough kitchen sponge on your lovely doll; it can scratch her and could even remove the paint.
We all know that playing with hair is one of the best things about having a doll. But even a few costume changes can render a beautiful coiffure into a frightful mess.
Get all of your things together first - if you can, get a wig brush with small, metal teeth or natural boars bristles; ideally one that does NOT have metal or plastic balls on the end of the bristles. A brush such as this will ruin acrylic hair. Get a small spray bottle of water or, if your doll’s hair is especially tangled, get a leave-in conditioner.
Divide the hair into manageable sections. Spray with either a mist of water or leave-in conditioner. Now carefully start to comb, one section at a time, starting from the BOTTOM of the hair and working your way up. Remember to hold the hair in your hand, near the top, so you do not place too much tension on the wig. Keep the combed sections separate from the rest of the tangled hair with a clip. If your doll has curly hair, remember to wind the curls around your finger, section by section, and gently brush either with a hair brush or even with your fingers.
We recommend you don’t use a comb or brush that has been used on people hair – human hair has oils that will adhere to the doll hair and end up attracting more dirt.
If your doll's hair is still looking dull, you can carefully put a 5p squirt of baby-oil into your palms and work it through the hair. Make sure to pay attention – not too much or it will get greasy. Now you can dress your doll's hair any way you like. A toothbrush used around the hair at the front is a good way to tidy any remaining loose strands away from the face.