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Best kids' camera 2023: recommended by parents

Whether they're three or 13, inspire your child's creativity and help capture precious memories with our guide to the best kids’ cameras UK 2023.

By Lucy Cotterill | Last updated Sep 26, 2023


Integrated cameras on phones and tablets have made photography more accessible to children than ever. But the best kids' camera is a great way to level up their creativity and photography skills. Plus, much like the best travel games, they're a small but crowd-pleasing addition to any family holiday.

Whether you’re looking for a simple first camera for your five-year-old, a camera designed for action, an instant option for a party or even a video camera for a budding YouTuber, our list has got you covered.

We know that choosing tech for your child can be tricky, especially when you need to factor in longevity and the risk of damage little ones might cause. That's why we took to the Mumsnet forums - home to the UK's largest online network of parents - to find the best kids' cameras real parents and their children have tried, tested and loved. We cross-referenced these recommendations with cameras approved by tech experts and analysed consumer reviews across the media to develop our guide to the best kids' cameras for every need, age and budget.

The Best Kids' Camera: at a glance

VTech Kidizoom camera
Overall best kids' camera

VTech Kidizoom
Duo Camera 5.0

Buy now from Amazon
Best kids' camera on a budget

Kids Camera

Buy now from Amazon
Best instant camera for kids

Instax Mini 11
Instant Film Camera

Buy now from Amazon

If you've found what you're looking for here, why not check out our age-related guides to the best toys for four-year-olds and six-year-olds? We have an extensive guide to the best LEGO sets available this year too.

1. Overall best kids' camera: VTech Kidizoom Duo 5.0 Camera

Price on writing: £45 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

User level: 3-9 years | Megapixels: 5 | Lens: Fixed plus digital 4 x zoom | LCD screen size: 2.4 inch | Max video resolution: 320 x 240 | Waterproof: No | Battery: 4 AA batteries required (included)

What we like

  • Robust and sturdy to protect against drops - perfect for toddlers

  • Frames, filters and effects add some extra fun

  • 4GB SD card included

  • Front and back lenses

  • Takes videos and photos

What we don’t like

  • Image quality reduces significantly when filters are applied

  • Older models of the Kidizoom have 2.0-megapixel resolution so make sure you get the latest model

What Mumsnet users say

Our five-year-old has a Kidizoom and loves it, particularly the video and frame functions.” (Recommended by Mumsnet user gg96cgp)

"Ours have had them for the last four years and they're still going, so are good and durable. Easy for kids to figure out and control. Pic quality isn't brilliant but the kids don't care." (Vetted by Mumnset user Vanpod)

Our verdict

If your little one is always grabbing your phone and handing it back to you with dozens of blurry photos, the VTech Kidizoom Duo 5.0 is a great alternative to help them channel their creativity.

Specially designed for younger children (three- to nine-year-olds) the new, improved Kidizoom Duo 5.0 has a brightly coloured design, large-sized buttons for easy handling and simple menu navigation. Great for parent peace of mind, it also has a rugged, shockproof shell that makes it the best kids' camera for even the clumsiest of preschoolers.

On the tech front, it has both front and rear-facing cameras, captures high-quality photo and video, and even includes built-in, easy-to-use editing software to allow your child to add fun frames, filters and various effects. With five built-in games including fast-paced road racing, a classic brick game and a memory challenge at the crazy café, there’s also plenty to keep children entertained during travel or family holidays.

Although the five-megapixel camera isn’t as high-definition as some of the cameras on our list, lots of Mumsnetters have found the Kidizoom to be a great option for children who are just getting started and we like that it has a 4X digital zoom to help children capture details in everyday life. Just don’t forget that you’ll need to buy disposable batteries to keep it charged up.

Read next: Keep the fun and the learning going with the best family board games and the top-ranking online tutoring services for your kids.

2. Best budget camera for kids: ITSHINY Kids' Camera

Price on writing: £33 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

User level: 3-10 years | Megapixels: 3, 5 or 8 | Lens: Fixed | LCD screen size: 3.5 inches | Max video resolution: 1080P/720P | Waterproof: No | Battery: ‎1 lithium ion battery required (included), but charged by USB

What we like

  • Super lightweight

  • Large LCD screen

  • USB-chargeable

  • Comes with a 32GB micro SD card

  • Has 12 extra special-effects frames for images

What we don’t like

  • No zoom feature

What Mumsnet users say

"We bought this one a few months ago [...] It was really good." (Recommended by Mumsnet user JellyBellies)

Our verdict

While not every child wants a toy in pink or blue, the ITSHINY Kids' Camera is a great budget-friendly contender for the title of best kids' camera.

Recommended for children aged three to 10, this kids’ camera is super lightweight and portable, with a sturdy, shockproof shell to protect against drops and falls.

Offering additional functionality to make it feel a little less like a toy, the ITSHINY Kids' Camera comes with an extra-large LCD screen for easy shooting, captures images in a range of quality levels from three to eight megapixels, has a nifty self-timer for photos with family and friends, and records high-quality HD 1080p video.

A positive for parents, it’s also fully chargeable by USB, so there’ll be no scrabbling around hunting for batteries.

Read next: Discover the latest must-reads with our guide to the best books for 8-year-olds.

3. Best instant camera for kids: Fujifilm Instax Mini 11

Price on writing: From £74 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

User level: 10+ | Megapixels: 3.7MP | Lens: Optical with selfie mode | LCD screen size: None | Max video resolution: None | Waterproof: No | Battery: 2 AA batteries required(included)

What we like

  • Slim, lightweight and easy to use

  • Instant prints are great for parties or special events

  • Customisable design to express their individuality

  • Includes a hand strap

What we don’t like

  • Instant film can be expensive

  • Not the highest quality images

What Mumsnet users say

“I love my Instax and it has been a hit with children at family 'dos. One advantage is I can give pics to my dad (and other older relatives) that he can physically show people, but I could do that with a printer. The cost of the film has come down a lot too.” (Recommended by Mumsnet user sashh)

Our verdict

With kids getting more screen time than ever before, you might be thinking about photography options that don’t rely on yet another digital device. The best kids' camera for instant prints, the Instax Mini 11 prints a 54 × 86mm snap, providing a nice memento of the special moment to share with family and friends, pop in an album or display in their bedroom.

With a dedicated selfie setting to help capture close-ups, the Instax Mini 11 also offers automatic exposure and flash to automatically adjust the lighting, making sure no one gets lost in the gloom, especially when shooting outdoors.

This camera comes in a choice of five muted colours with two customisable shutter buttons to allow your child to really express their personality. It’s worth taking into account that, as the camera doesn’t come with film, you’ll need to purchase the required Instax Mini Instant Film separately, which unfortunately doesn’t come cheap.

Read next: Check out our guides to the best games console and the top laptops for kids as rated by Mumsnetters.

4. Best Polaroid camera for kids: Polaroid 9030 Instant i-Type Camera

Price on writing: From £95 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

User level: Age 6+ | Megapixels: None (analogue) | Lens: Dual-lens system | LCD screen size: None | Max video resolution: None | Waterproof: No | Battery: 2 AA batteries required (included)

What we like

  • Original Polaroid

  • Auto-focuses

  • Double exposure option for really unique pictures

  • Produces larger square-sized photos than the Instax Mini 11

What we don’t like

  • Cost of film is high

  • A little bulky

What Mumsnet users say

Three of mine have them. They are taken out on occasions and especially if there is a sleepover. Mine love theirs.” (Recommended by Mumsnet user Nutsabouttopic)

Our verdict

Another popular instant camera choice for kids is the Polaroid 9030, a Polaroid ‘point-and-shoot’ camera that captures sharp, vivid colours.

With an integrated auto-focus, flash and self-timer, this is the best kids' camera for capturing instant selfies and group photos of friends, even offering double exposure options to frame two moments within the same shot. Perfect for budding photographers.

Available in seven different colours, the Polaroid 9030 is a bold, bright statement camera that is practical as well as fun but, as with any instant camera, the cost of film can considerably increase the running costs.

(It’s also worth knowing before you embarrass your child with a rendition of Outkast’s ‘Hey Ya!’ and ‘Shake it like a Polaroid picture’, that you no longer have to shake the images to help them dry.)

Read next: The best kids' headphones according to Mumsnetters.

5. Best camera for 10-year-olds: KODAK PIXPRO FZ45 16MP 4x Zoom Digital Compact Camera

Price on writing: £95 | Buy now from Argos

Key specs

User level: Age 6+ | Megapixels: 16MP | Lens: 27mm wide angle lens | LCD screen size: 2.7 inches | Max video resolution: 1080p | Waterproof: No | Battery: 2 AA batteries required (included)

What we like

  • Intuitive and easy to use

  • Compact and lightweight

  • Face recognition and red eye removal

  • One-touch video

What we don’t like

  • Runs with AA batteries (so stock up)

Our verdict

This lightweight and compact digital camera is the best kids' camera for both beginners and tweens thanks to its super simple, intuitive controls. The menu and interface are very straightforward to navigate, allowing your child to start snapping pics and recording videos in mere minutes.

With 16 megapixels and the ability to record high-quality video footage, it offers surprisingly good functionality for the price point, even allowing your child to automatically remove any red eyes that may otherwise occur in low light.

While it would be great to see a rechargeable battery, the Kodak PIXAPRO is the best kids' camera for all those looking for a smartphone-alternative for their budding photographer.

Read next: Keep little hands busy with the best fidget toys.

6. Best camera for younger kids: Oaxis myFirst Camera 2

Price on writing: £71 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

User level: 3 years+ | Megapixels: 8 megapixels | Lens: Single | LCD screen size: 2 inches | Max video resolution: 1920 x 1080 | Waterproof: Yes (in case) | Battery: 1000 mAh rechargeable battery

What we like

  • Waterproof case is ideal for holidays

  • USB charging

  • Includes 16GB MicroSD card

  • Customisable block design

What we don’t like

  • Parents will need to check waterproof case is securely fastened before use in water

  • Older kids may find the design too babyish

What Mumsnet users say

“There's only about £10 difference between kids’ cameras and cheaper adult ones, but I think my daughter prefers the appearance of this kids’ one!” (Recommended by Mumsnetter MakeMineALargeProsecco)

Our verdict

The Oaxis myFirst Camera 2 has a fun, block-like design that is not only super appealing to kids but can be fully customised with the accompanying stickers. USB-rechargeable, with an eight megapixel definition, full HD video and fun features such as preloaded photo templates, this is the best kids' camera for younger children looking for an all-rounder.

One of the best kids' cameras for holidays and travel, it also comes with a unique waterproof case, allowing it to be taken for a half-hour dip in the pool or sea at a depth of up to three metres.

Read next: Up your kids' gadget game with the best kids' smartwatch.

7. Best action camera for kids: AKASO V50 X Action Camera

Price on writing: £89 | Buy now from OnBuy

Key specs

User level: Ages 8+ | Megapixels: 20 | Lens: Fixed, wide angle with adjustable view angle (from 70 degrees to 170 degrees) | LCD screen size: 2-inch IPS touch screen | Max video resolution: 4K Ultra HD 3840 x 2160p | Waterproof: Up to 40 metres | Battery: 2x 1350mAh batteries (included)

What we like

  • Durable design

  • Waterproof up to 40 metres

  • 4K ultra HD video capabilities

  • Comes with two rechargeable 1350mAh batteries

What we don’t like

  • Quite bulky

  • It works best with a 100MB micro SD card (sold separately)

What Mumsnet users say

“If you don't want to go for a GoPro brand, this is a pretty good option…” (Recommended by Mumsnet user CandyLeBonBon)

Our verdict

If you’re heading off on holiday and want your child to be able to capture some really unique shots, a waterproof action camera may be a good place to start, offering the ability to capture fun shots both in and out of the water.

The AKASO V50 X Action Camera is the best kids' camera for just this; it's sturdy and durable with an easy-to-use touch screen (or it can be controlled using a remote-control wristband with buttons) and the ability for your child to set the view angle depending on what they’re doing.

Waterproof up to 40 metres in depth, the camera has a protective case and special diving mode features to filter the red light underwater. Plus, with a high 20 megapixels image quality even in low light, image stabilisation to avoid blurry pics, auto-focus and smile detectors, this camera captures 4K Ultra HD video with slow motion and time-lapse effects. Not only one of the best kids' cameras for durability, it's the best kids' camera alternative to the pricey GoPro brand.

Related: Discover the best Nintendo Switch games for kids.

8. Best drone with camera for kids: DEERC D20 Mini Drone for Kids

Price on writing: From £40 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

User level: 8 years+ (supervision required) | Megapixels: Unspecified | Lens: 80° wide angle | LCD screen size: N/A | Max video resolution: HD1280 x 720P | Waterproof: No | Battery: ‎2 lithium ion batteries required (included)

What we like

  • Aerial photos and videos capture angles like never before

  • HD pictures and live videos

  • Can see the images via the free smartphone app

  • Low power alarm and emergency stop

What we don’t like

  • Quality of shots can vary

  • Each battery will need recharging after 10 minutes of flight

  • Supervision is required, plus you need to make sure you're meeting official safety requirements while using

Our verdict

While capturing photos from the ground can be fun, taking aerial photos can be really exciting and quite literally allows your child to explore the world from a completely different view.

There are some stipulations about when and where you can use a drone outside, which you’ll need to be aware of, but the DEERC D20 Mini Drone for Kids is an affordable option that can capture high-quality, dramatic 720p video footage of the scenes below - not many of the best kids' cameras can offer the same!

Easy to use via either voice control or a one-key stop and start, this remote-control drone can recognise hand signals to take spectacular selfies and also do an impressive loop-the-loop for unique action shots.

Read next: For more toy inspiration this year, our guides to the best toy cars and best toys for seven-year-olds have you covered.

9. Best kids' camera for shooting video: VTech Kidizoom Studio

Price on writing: From £50 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

User level: 5-12 years | Megapixels: 5.0 | Lens: Unspecified | LCD screen size: 2.4 inches | Max video resolution: 720p | Waterproof: No | Battery: ‎1 lithium ion battery required (included and chargeable)

What we like

  • Fun video effects and green screen options

  • Portable tripod

  • Flip-up lens

  • Child-friendly video editing

What we don’t like

  • Separate SD card is recommended to expand the internal memory

  • The instructions advise that the camera should only be charged via a laptop and not through a standard USB

What Mumsnet users say

“My six-year-old daughter loves her Kidizoom. She doesn't use the games, just the camera and the editing part.” (Recommended by Mumsnet user Moonflower12)

Our verdict

Does your child love to make videos? The VTech Kidizoom Studio is the best kids' camera for every budding YouTuber - featuring everything they need to bring their videos to life, including a HD video recorder, mini tripod, wrist strap and green screen.

Offering high-quality 720p HD video recording and a large 2.4-inch colour LCD screen for easy viewing, it also has a flip-up lens for recording in selfie mode, so your child can record a wide range of fun video footage.

With built-in, easy-to-use video editing, children can choose from 20 different backgrounds for their videos, including TV show sets, beaches and outer space scenes. They can even create illusions or green screen effects using the sheet included.

Read next: For more Mumsnet-approved toy ideas, check out our guide to the best dinosaur toys.

10. Best kids’ phone camera: SIM Free iPhone SE 5G 64GB Mobile Phone

Price on writing: £347 | Buy now from Amazon

User level: 10+ | Megapixels: 12 MP | Lens: Six-element | LCD screen size: 4.7 inches | Max video resolution: 1080p | Waterproof: Water-resistant depth rated IP67 (maximum of 1 metre up to 30 minutes)  | Battery: Lithium‑ion battery

What we like

  • Compact size ideal for small hands

  • Retina HD display

  • 5G capabilities

  • 12 MP wide camera and 4K video

What we don’t like

  • Costly compared to beginner digital cameras

  • Smaller size than other iPhone models

What Mumsnet users say

“I have an SE and am really happy with the camera. And have tiny hands!” (Recommended by Mumnsetter Rainallnight)

“I have the SE. Really good and great for small hands.” (Vetted by Mumsnet user Norachance)

Our verdict

These days, phone cameras are often as good as, if not better than, stand-alone cameras, making them sometimes the best kids' camera option for tweens and teens who may prefer a phone camera to a separate ‘digi’ cam. They also come with the added bonus of being able to link up with in-phone apps to add fun filters or upload straight to social media.

iPhones can be extremely expensive, especially if you opt for the latest model. The SE is a more affordable option for children and is both compact and slimline for small hands.

With a toughened screen and 5G capabilities, this phone features an impressive 12MP camera with a variety of photo styles including a portrait mode and 1080p video recording. This camera is packed with features to improve your child’s photography including image stabilisation, auto focus, red eye correction and burst mode.

Read next: Boost your child's learning with the best online learning resource.

11. Best kids’ DSLR camera: Canon EOS 2000D

Price on writing: £362 | Buy now from Amazon

Key specs

User level: 12+ | Megapixels: 24.1 | Lens: 18-55mm IS II lens (included) | LCD screen size: 3 inches | Max video resolution: Full HD 1080p | Waterproof: No | Battery: LP-E10 (Re-chargeable)

What we like

  • Perfect for a novice

  • Shoots full HD movies

  • Built-in Wi-Fi

  • Professional-level photos

  • Auto-focus

  • Easy to share via Canon Camera Connect App (iOS and Android)

What we don’t like

  • Expensive

What Mumsnet users say

"My wife has a Canon EOS and the entry-level cameras are good starter DSLRs at around £500." (Recommended by Mumsnetter CruelAndUnusualParenting)

Our verdict

For artistic teens, a DSLR camera is the best kids' camera to take their photography from smartphone amateur to novice professional. However, deciding which one to choose is tricky. There are a lot out there, and many come with hefty price tags. Never fear; we're here to recommend the Canon EOS 2000D, which is perfect for beginners and has a price point significantly lower than its competitors (although not entirely insignificant).

The Canon EOS 2000D has a sizeable 24.1MP sensor, a 4+ processor and rapid auto-focus that will enable your teen to take quick, detailed photos day or night. It'll work for novice directors too, with its ability to shoot Full HD movies with a 1080p resolution.

Sharing content is simple. With built-in Wi-Fi and NFC, kids can connect to the Canon Camera app and upload photos when and wherever they wish. Oh, and the app lets them control the camera remotely for self-portraits and filming.

Easy to use, lightweight and jam-packed with assisting features, this is the best kids' camera to give your teen a chance to express themselves creatively and blow you away with the pictures it produces.

Read next: Our guides to the best toys for 8-year-olds, toys for 9-year-olds and 10-year-olds have you covered this year, whether you're looking for gift inspiration or just a refresh of the toy cupboard this year.

Read next: Looking for a homework-friendly tablet for primary-aged kids? Check out our Amazon Fire HD 8 Kids and Kids Pro Review here.

What is a good first camera for a child?

The right first camera for your child will depend on what age they get started with photography. We think the Oaxis myFirst Camera 2 is the best beginner camera for kids aged three to eight years old.

The Canon EOS 2000D is a great option for older children aged 16 and over thanks to its more powerful features that produce professional content.

At what age should a child have a camera?

With technology becoming smarter and more advanced every day, children as young as three years old have the opportunity to start photography using the multitude of toddler-friendly cameras on the market. These will generally be really easy to use, have a sturdy exterior to withstand accidental drops and feature fun effects to spark the imagination.

What is the best camera for a 12-year-old beginner?

If your 12-year-old is after something simple, lightweight with the ability to record high-quality videos, we like the KODAK PIXPRO. For more action-orientated kids looking for a GoPro alternative, the AKASO V50 is also a great choice for waterproof durability.

What is the best kids' camera for a three-year-old?

We think the Vtech Kidizoom Duo Camera 5.0 is one of the best cameras for a three-year-old. It has plenty of fun games and filters and, best of all, comes with a shockproof case and easy-to-grip handles.

What are the benefits of the best kids' cameras?

  • They enrich their understanding of the world around them.

  • They allow children to explore their curiosity and ask questions.

  • They expand your child's vocabulary through storytelling.

  • They create opportunities for a detailed look at nature through the lens.

  • They add depth to your child’s STEM learning.

  • They will enhance your child’s memory and recall skills as they discuss photos.

  • They are an excellent introductory tool to tech and the digital world.

What should I look for in the best kids' camera?

The world of cameras comes with a bewildering range of different features. Thankfully, specially designed cameras for kids strip away some of these complications and, if you choose the right one, it will focus on the most important thing – having fun.

Here are some things to consider when making your choice:

  • Age: Some models are brighter, more toy-like and harder to break, and these can be suitable for children aged three and above. Preschooler cameras might not have the most powerful definition, so older children who want higher quality photos may need a higher spec.

  • Is it a toy?: Cute-looking kids’ cameras and toy-like designs can include built-in games and funny filters, but they might not shoot pictures that are as sharp as you are used to seeing on the average modern smartphone. If you’re looking for something more serious, there are models aimed at beginners that would be more suitable as a kids’ camera for older children.

  • Cost: As a general rule, the more sophisticated features on offer, the more you will need to spend. If your child is dabbling in photography and simply wants to have fun, you don’t need to break the bank. If you’re looking for HD video, high resolutions and zoom capabilities, you may need to spend a little more.

  • Is it portable?: Some cameras are small and compact, fitting in a pocket like a smartphone, whereas others are more bulky and substantial in size. Smaller cameras are more suitable for travel and outdoor use, whereas dimensions are less important for use in the home.

  • Does it need video?: Most (but not all) kids’ cameras can also shoot video, but the quality can vary substantially from one camera to the next. If they’re keen to capture action shots and high-speed videos without blur, you may need to spend more for HD 5k video capabilities.

  • Does it need to be waterproof?: A waterproof camera is not only great for peace of mind, but allows your child to capture some really unique images on holiday or at the pool. The depth they are waterproof to also varies from one manufacturer to the next, so make sure you read the specifications to avoid breakages.

  • Photo output: What will they want to do with the photos after they’ve taken them? Some digital kids’ cameras have easy-to-use photo editing software, enabling the photos to be transferred to another device. Another option – which can be great fun – is a Polaroid camera that prints physical pictures instantly.

  • What extras are required?: Extras can be costly, whether it’s batteries, memory cards, film or special tripods and mountings. Take into consideration not only the cost of the camera, but the ongoing running costs and additional purchases you may need to make.

Read next: Amazon Fire 7 Kids vs Amazon Fire HD 8 Kids: Which is the best kids' tablet?

What is the best camera for children's photography?

For younger photographers, the Vtech Kidizoom Duo Camera 5.0 is the best camera for kids on the market right now. Parents highlight its fun filters and say that it’s given their children hours of fun, with the included games being an extra bonus.

It has a child-friendly design, a shockproof case, easy-to-hold handles and great usability, as well as front and rear cameras and an impressive three-inch screen. It also takes pictures up to five megapixels – enough to spark the imagination of a young beginner photographer.

In terms of older kids, the Canon EOS 2000D is a great entry-level DSLR and the VTech KidiZoom is a good option for any budding YouTubers.

How we chose our recommendations

Recommendations from parents

Because we know there’s nothing like a recommendation from a real parent, we first headed to the Mumsnet forums to find out which cameras discerning Mumsnet users had bought for their kids. We compiled a list of cameras they recommended, noting how effective they found them and what ages they thought they were suitable for.

Experts' best buys

We then did significant research across the wider web, looking at which kids’ cameras had won accolades or been featured in ‘best buy’ lists across retail sites including Amazon, Jessops and Currys, as well as trusted, independent print media and tech specialist sites.

Honest customer reviews

Lastly, we thoroughly researched authentic consumer reviews. We looked for positive and negative reviews and dug deeper to identify any consistent pros or cons.

About the author

Lucy Cotterill is a mum of two and Content Writer at Mumsnet, specialising in baby/child and lifestyle product reviews and round-ups. Having written product reviews on her own blog Real Mum Reviews since 2012, Lucy loves to research and explore the pros and cons of baby and child products, scrutinising reviews and consumer feedback to help parents make confident purchases that benefit their families.

Why you should trust us

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