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Toy Safety Standards in the UK

By: Sarah Clark (ILEX) - Updated: 1 Jul 2020 | comments*Discuss
 
Toy Safety Safety Standards Toys Uk Toy

All toys supplied in the UK must meet a list of essential safety requirements which are set out in the Toy (Safety) Regulations 2011 (previously the Toy Safety Regulations 1995 - updated in 2010 - and now revoked) and to prove that these requirements are met, all toys should also carry a CE Marking.

What is the Purpose of a CE Mark?

The purpose of a CE marking is not actually to certify to you that a toy is safe to buy, it’s predominantly there for the authorities who regulate toy safety in the UK, and it’s designed to show them that the toy is intended to be sold within the European Community and that it conforms to a list of essential safety requirements.

Having said that, if there is no CE Mark then you are better off not buying the toy, because you won’t know whether the toy has been made according to EU toy safety regulations without it.

British Toy Safety Standards – and EN71

There are seven British Standards which apply to toy safety standards, in addition to a separate standard which covers the electrical safety of toys.

Toy regulations in the UK are governed by a Europe-wide toy safety standard EN71 which governs the safety all toys sold in the UK and within the European Union. These toy safety standards have been in place since 1990, and were updated in 1995.

EN71 covers the safety standards for all toys for children up to the age of 14 - products that are not intended as toys but look like toys (e.g those made for decorative purposes) are still included under the directive. It also divides toy suitability into age ranges and warnings for toys that are unsuitable for children under three. The legislation is in six parts and covers aspects of safety that include flammability, toxicity and safety marking.

If any toy is found to be unsafe according to the regulations, then the producer can be found guilty of a criminal offence. The producer can claim that in principle all reasonable steps were taken to ensure the toy’s safety to avoid prosecution, fines or even imprisonment, but the toy gets no such reprieve and will be withdrawn from sale across the EU straight away. All member states are automatically notified that there is an unsafe toy, and the toy is recalled.

What Types of Toy are Excluded from Toy Safety Legislation?

Some types of novelty can be excluded from UK toy laws – and these are:

  • fashion jewellery for children
  • Christmas decorations
  • sports equipment.

Although these exclusions can make the toy safety situation look more complicated, it doesn’t make a great deal of difference because even though they are not classified as toys, they must still comply with all the other UK consumer safety legislation, namely the Consumer Protection Act 1987.There is also an EU wide General Product Safety Directive which provides safety standards for physical and mechanical properties.

  • flammability
  • chemical properties
  • electrical properties
  • hygiene
  • radioactivity.

What Should I do if I think a Toy is Unsafe?

If you have bought a toy for your child which has caused an injury, or if you have reason to believe that it might even be in breach of the toy safety regulations it’s a very serious matter. You should contact your local Trading Standards office straight away so that they can take the toy and carry out tests, and if necessary arrange for the toy to be recalled.

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I make crochet play food do I need to get it safety checked before I sell them
Sarah - 1-Jul-20 @ 7:45 PM
Hi, I want to start selling sensory bottles for infants. I’m using VOSS water bottles, but wondered if using gorilla glue to seal them shut would be safe enough? Would these need to be tested. Thanks
NC - 27-Jun-20 @ 10:13 PM
Hi there I am looking to make and sell play dough kits. I am looking for any recommendations of a lab to send the play dough to so it can be tested. I would really appreciate any advice you have on this. Jo
Jo - 27-Jun-20 @ 7:04 PM
Hi I would like to make silicone teething rings and wooden bunny ear teething rings for babies. How do I get my products tested before I sell them? All materials I buy are from specialist places which have been certified and meet standards. Do I still need to get my finished products certified and how do I go about this? Thanks in advance
Emma - 21-Jun-20 @ 9:54 AM
Hi, I'm buying sand for my son's sand pit. It complies with toy safety standards but nothing specific on being crystalline silica-free sand. It claims to be non-toxic and safe, does this mean silica free? Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks Elaine
Elaine - 19-Jun-20 @ 6:10 PM
Hi I want to make teethers for young children and those older with special needs.I can buy the materials from a specialist shop which states the beads/materials required etc have been certified. How do I go about having mine CE approved once completed and ready to sell please? There is a website page I found but they want membership fees etc in order to help you.
Cath - 17-Jun-20 @ 5:00 PM
Hello. I bought eva foam playmat on ebay. On the package was written down to wash it before use and leave it open for few hours. I washed it few times and it still has oily surface. My baby keeps slipping on it. Is nor able to crawl. When I took it away it left on my floor oily surface and I slipped on it. Also it smells like something toxic. How does it work to check the product if it meets all criteria of being safety for babies? Best regards. Alex.
Aleks - 11-Jun-20 @ 2:29 PM
Hi I bought stuffing for a soft toy I crocheted for child. The stuffing was purchased online advertising that it confirmed to you safety standards DINEN71-3 . HOWEVER it's not written on the packaging is this chemically and fire retardant safe to use. Many thanks Deborah
Deborah - 10-Jun-20 @ 5:03 PM
Hello I want to make dummy clips using wooden, silicone and crochet beads I have had sellers tell me they are food grade silicone the wood is untreated and am using 2mm nylon cord for the string are these safe?
eric23 - 3-Jun-20 @ 6:00 PM
Hi, do lavender bags count as soft toys if they have soft-fill padding?
Joanie - 27-May-20 @ 11:43 AM
Hi,I want to start making dummy clip chains, teething rings made out of silicone, wooden and crochet beads. I would like to purchase the beads from China and it does say on their website that the beads have been tested. Would I still need to test my finished product here in UK and where should I have it tested? Thank you
ij - 18-May-20 @ 6:43 PM
Hi I am looking at making personalised wooden toy boxes and memory boxes. Would these be classified as toys? Would they need to adhere to EN71
Jen - 13-May-20 @ 8:39 PM
If a soft cuddly toy has the CE label does that automatically mean it will be safe for children under 3 years or does it need a separate label saying this?
Julie - 10-Mar-20 @ 12:13 PM
With regards to childrens Puzzles, what safety cert do you need to pass?
Mark - 29-Feb-20 @ 7:42 AM
Hello, i would like to know please what are the "ce" conditions for outdoor toys please such as pickler triangle, ladders... (all home made using wood by a joiner). I did researches but i can't really get those conditions. Thanks
Momo - 19-Feb-20 @ 12:19 PM
Hi, I'm making dummy clips and teething rings with silicone beads and wooden rings. All the materials have been brought from A company that specialises in beads for dummy clips which have been tested. Can you please advise where to have my products tested or what I need to do in order to sell the finished products? Thank you
Chan - 11-Feb-20 @ 4:34 PM
I have a thought if I provide a service which includes a play tent frame(EN71-1), foam mattress, tent cover made from material bought at a local fabric shop and general bedding( keep away from fire). The cumulation of these parts = a service. So is there a need for being in accordance with CE marking if I highlight highest risk in service( bedding). Therefore if tent cover is = bedding I can highlight risks to customer and therefore As low as reasonably possible I have identified risk?Therefore to finalise no risk in altering tent cover from EN71-2 to non validated fabric as long as it meets lowest denominator in the bedding? Any thought.
Crashburitto - 10-Feb-20 @ 9:19 PM
Hi, I paint song and story props with ce tested acrylic paints and sealed with ce tested toy sealant, do I still need to get the wooden spoons tested again? They are ce tested and purchased from amazon and hobby craft? Thank you
Gg - 15-Jan-20 @ 8:38 PM
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tinky winky - 11-Dec-19 @ 12:40 PM
hi i am currently suffering from bored-o-phobia and this article is really triggering me, please take this down as soon as possible i am from the FBI and i am part of the NDL(niko defence league) also please subscribe to niko omilana, he saves lives on the daily thank you from shush
shush - 11-Dec-19 @ 12:32 PM
Hi, I'm making dummy clips and teething rings with silicone beads and wooden rings. All the materials have been bought of amazon which have been tested. Can you please advise where to have my products tested or what I need to do in order to sell the finished products? Thank you
Chris - 27-Nov-19 @ 10:05 AM
I want to start selling crayons in different shapes,I will use crayons already ce certified and melt them but what do I need to do to be able to sell them.im confused with all the directives and what they come under.
Roxy - 23-Nov-19 @ 10:09 PM
Hi I would like to make sensory boxes for babies and young children containing a range of sensory toys and items, how would I go about making sure they comply with standards, some will be homemade others bought from a supplier?
Bridie - 10-Nov-19 @ 3:19 PM
i want to make poodle rockers (rocking horse but with poodles) do i have to get them CE tested ? also is normal oil based undercoat and topcoat of eggshell ok to use or do i have to get specific paint for that sort of project thank you
jum - 18-Oct-19 @ 11:49 PM
I really want to make wooden poodle rockers and paint them . What is he best paint to use? Can I use normal oil based undercoat and normal eggshell paint
Juliet - 18-Oct-19 @ 6:26 PM
Hi, I would like to get into crafting to sell.Would the following items need to be CE testEd? Canvas Bags, Paper bunting and make-up bags. I wouldn’t class any of these items as toys but the bunting maybe in a child’s room as decoration so I am not sure if this would require testing.I wouldn’t know where to start with this so any help would be appreciated.
KateD - 12-Oct-19 @ 8:07 AM
Hi. I am looking into making chewelry for children with the tendency to chew clothing. They will be made only of recycled tshirt materials. Is there a test I need to do for safety. Thank you.
Missmonty80 - 5-Oct-19 @ 12:47 PM
Can anyone tell me the toxitity of fabric paint specifically glow in the dark.
Cal - 24-Sep-19 @ 8:48 PM
Hi, I am looking to handmake and sell Taggie blankets for children. I don’t class these as a toy but now am unsure whether they would need to be tested! If anyone could give some advice I’d be very grateful thank you
Loumeg123 - 31-Aug-19 @ 4:33 PM
What is the legal requirement for ribbon length on a babies toy?
Claire Grant - 24-Aug-19 @ 9:50 AM
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Latest Comments
  • Sarah
    Re: Toy Safety Standards in the UK
    I make crochet play food do I need to get it safety checked before I sell them
    1 July 2020
  • Emma
    Re: Toy Safety Standards in the UK
    Hi I would like to make silicone teething rings and wooden bunny ear teething rings for babies. How do I get my products tested…
    21 June 2020
  • Elaine
    Re: Toy Safety Standards in the UK
    Hi, I'm buying sand for my son's sand pit. It complies with toy safety standards but nothing specific on being crystalline…
    19 June 2020
  • Cath
    Re: Toy Safety Standards in the UK
    Hi I want to make teethers for young children and those older with special needs.I can buy the materials from a specialist shop…
    17 June 2020
  • Aleks
    Re: Toy Safety Standards in the UK
    Hello. I bought eva foam playmat on ebay. On the package was written down to wash it before use and leave it open for few…
    11 June 2020
  • Deborah
    Re: Toy Safety Standards in the UK
    Hi I bought stuffing for a soft toy I crocheted for child. The stuffing was purchased online advertising that it confirmed to…
    10 June 2020
  • eric23
    Re: Toy Safety Standards in the UK
    Hello I want to make dummy clips using wooden, silicone and crochet beads I have had sellers tell me they are food grade…
    3 June 2020
  • Joanie
    Re: Toy Safety Standards in the UK
    Hi, do lavender bags count as soft toys if they have soft-fill padding?
    27 May 2020
  • JLB
    Re: What is This Toy Safety Mark?
    Good evening, I am looking at a product concept consisting of learning flash cards for children. Please may I ask whether this…
    14 May 2020
  • Jen
    Re: Toy Safety Standards in the UK
    Hi I am looking at making personalised wooden toy boxes and memory boxes. Would these be classified as toys? Would they need to…
    13 May 2020