The 25 top Christmas toys for 2020
30 October 2020
Luckily Santa is exempt from lockdown, so it’s once again time to write that letter and get those requests in. Don’t worry if the children in your life are lacking inspiration. We’ve rounded up the top Christmas toys to buy this year.
Whether it’s for a newborn or a teen (or any age in between), there’s something for everyone here in our list of must-have Christmas toys for 2020.
Best Christmas toys for babies
1. Fisher-Price Rollin’ Rovee
Lights, sounds and music. What more could a baby want? Rollin’ Rovee may not be for life, but he’s certainly not just for Christmas either. Suitable from six months all the way up to preschool age, there are four play modes to choose from, which makes Rollin’ Rovee the ideal toy for a growing child.
Little ones will love the light-up face and soft arms, while bigger kids will enjoy learning the alphabet, opposites and following directions. Just don’t forget to buy five AA batteries (not included).
Age: 6 months+
2. Grimm’s Rainbow
“I bought it just after DS was born and DD who was 3.5 fell in love with it. She plays with it all the time and guests always want to play with it too.”
“It’s an open-ended toy. It can be anything. Even my nine-year-old plays with it."
Grimm’s Rainbow has long been a favourite with Mumsnetters thanks to its colourful design.
Each rainbow is cut from a single block of lime wood and naturally stained using non-toxic, water-based colour, which means it’s totally safe for babies.
While it’s definitely on the pricey side, it’s surprisingly versatile. Babies love the tactile wood and colours, while toddlers can balance the rainbow in a variety of different ways and make elaborate creations – think shelters for animals, tunnels for vehicles and cots for dolls.
Age: 6 months+
Price: £68.94 for 12-piece set (£24.49 for six pieces)Buy now from Babi Pur
3. Olli Ella Dinkum Dolls
These soft, poseable dolls are made from natural recycled materials and come in a range of skin and hair colours. Each one is around 36cm tall.
Choose between Roo, Poppet, Peanut, Pumpkin, Sprout and Tiny. While soft and cuddly, Olli Ella Dinkum Dolls are also robust enough to cope with little hands. Plus, they have clothes that you can remove and a rainbow over their hearts (very appropriate for 2020).
Age: 6 months+
Price: £48.95Buy now from Babi Pur
4. Bilibo Sensory Toy
“They are fantastic. Not just for balancing and spinning, but as monster helmets, as Grand Central Station when building train tracks, for water play in the garden, and many other things – only limited by the DC's imagination. A good buy IMO.”
“We've just taken both of ours to the toddler group (at the insistence of DS2) and they've all had great fun playing with them. The mums really like them too!”
Described on Mumsnet as a “funny shell-shaped piece of plastic,” this is the ultimate imagination toy.
Perfect for pretending to be a tortoise or a sailor, or rocking dolls to sleep, most older toddlers will also use it to spin around really fast.
Recommended for toddlers aged two upwards, the Bilibo also gets good reviews from parents whose children have Special Educational Needs (SEN).
5. Triclimb Single Rainbow
“DS is two now and still uses it every day. Sometimes for climbing, sometimes for den building, and uses the slide for loads of things too. It's expensive, but in terms of cost per use, we've definitely got our money's worth.”
It can be tricky to find gifts that are suitable from birth but, believe it or not, this baby climbing frame is.
Designed to help babies pull themselves up and eventually learn to climb, it works really well as a den too. The Triclimb is beautifully designed, it has rainbow colours on one side and is made from natural wood.
Age: From birth (with different levels for older toddlers)
Price: £230Buy now from Babi Pur
Best Christmas toys for preschoolers
6. Top Trumps
“DS knows ALL the cards off by heart and so, if you have a number, he knows which card you have. Very exciting too, even for me.”
There really is a pack of Top Trumps for everyone – Awesome Animals, Minecraft, Dinosaurs, Dogs and now a special edition for NHS and key workers. Whatever your children are interested in, you can find it in a Top Trumps pack.
If you’ve never played Top Trumps before, this game is all about picking the category on your card with the most points. Some packs are easier than others so look out for ones with helpful cues, such as colours, for children not yet old enough to read.
Age: 3+ (depending on the pack)
7. Little Live Pets Gotta Go Flamingo
A flamingo that sits on the loo and does a poo. Yes, really!
Sure to be a hit with preschoolers with a penchant for toilet humour, feed Sherbert the Flamingo the special powder, watch it sing the ‘Gotta Go’ song and then wait for the result. Just be careful not to lose the powder as you can’t buy replacements.
8. DesignaFriend Sisi doll
“DesignaFriend dolls are lovely and come in beautiful packaging which makes them feel slightly high-end.”
“My daughter loves DesignaFriend dolls. Great quality and they get played with A LOT!"
Exclusive to Argos, DesignaFriend Sisi Doll already features on many a Christmas list.
The soft-bodied doll wears a blue cropped sweatshirt with a silver 'Dance till you drop' glitter print and matching silver trainers. Sisi is 45cm tall and comes with a charm bracelet too.
Children love the doll’s smiley face, which look friendly and not too grown-up, and Mumsnet users report that Sisi is good quality and can withstand a lot of play.
9. Draw with Rob
Were your children among the millions who followed Rob Biddulph’s online art classes during lockdown? One session even earned him a Guinness World Record.
Whether your children joined in or not, this book is great for budding artists and will make an excellent stocking filler. They can learn to draw their favourite characters like Penguin Blue and a very Hot Dog. It also has perforated pages so you can display their works of art on the fridge once they’re done.
10. John Lewis & Partners Waitrose Supermarket
Stereotypically Mumsnet? Maybe. Extremely cute? Definitely. Your kids will get hours of fun out of this role play checkout, which comes with a built-in calculator, pretend credit card, Waitrose paper bags and a range of toy groceries (including croissants, obviously).
Age: 3 years+
11. Hatchimals Pixies
It’s not Christmas without a Hatchimal! The new Hatchimals Pixies have launched just in time for 2020. Choose from Krystalina Rose or Violet Onyx (the main difference is colour).
There’s an auto-stop feature, so the wings will safely stop if, or when, they get touched by accident. They also come with a crystal egg display case and base. And, for once, the battery and USB charging cable are both included.
12. Paw Patrol Dino Rescue Team Vehicle
This toy combines two things that most preschoolers say are their absolute favourites – dinosaurs and Paw Patrol. It’s the first-ever motorised PAW Patrol team vehicle. Just push the button and watch the truck go, then launch the nets and catch the dinosaurs. What’s more, batteries are included.
Even though there is room for all six pups, it only comes with Chase (as well as one dinosaur figure and two projectiles) so, despite the high price, you unfortunately still have to buy the rest of the Adventure Bay crew separately.
13. LeapFrog Scoop and Learn Ice Cream Cart
“My three-year-old loves his ice cream cart and so does anyone who comes to our house to play.”
“For anyone looking for a good present for a three-year-old, we got this LeapFrog ice cream cart for our son. It’s been played with constantly, and any friends who come over like it too.”
This ice cream cart may be suitable for children aged two and over, but we think it’s the ideal toy for slightly older toddlers as it comes with 20 pieces that help children to learn about colours, numbers, matching and memory.
Good news for parents – it also has tonnes of storage to make sure all those small accessories don't get lost.
14. Poopsie Dancing Unicorn
If you managed to escape the viral Poopsie music video ‘My Poops’ on YouTube, which has had over 40 million views, then you might not immediately understand the appeal of this toy.
Poopsie dances and sings along to her own hit track. There’s also a cloud brush for brushing her rainbow hair. Perfect for unicorn-obsessed children.
Best Christmas toys for primary school children
15. Baby Yoda
“Forget the children. I want Baby Yoda for my ‘inner child’."
Star Wars may have spent $50 million animating baby Yoda this year, but you can buy him as a gift for a much more reasonable £60. Star Wars The Child Animatronic Edition (to give Baby Yoda his full name) is bound to be a top toy this Christmas.
Not only is he animatronic, but he’s also very cute. Baby Yoda’s head moves up and down, his ears move back and forth, and his eyes open. He can also, unsurprisingly, ‘use the Force.’
16. Lego Super Mario Adventure Starter Course
The computer game comes to life! At under £50, this toy is on the expensive side, but the set contains 231 pieces and a Mario character that has colour sensors, as well as LCD screens in his eyes, mouth and stomach. He can also display over 100 different instant reactions to movement.
Like the 90s game (how well do you remember it?), the aim is to earn virtual coins as you send Mario round the course. For the fully authentic experience, it comes with a speaker that plays the Mario game sounds.
17. Laser 33298 Battle Hunters Vehicle
A brilliant gift for siblings (not least because it makes it much more affordable), each pack contains two controllers and two Laser vehicles – although they do work separately too.
The aim is to hunt your enemy, take aim at the rear of your opponent’s vehicle and fire. Do so three times to win. Vehicles move forward, reverse, spin and turn at super-fast speeds. Top speed is an impressive 4.3km per hour.
18. Sock Unicorn Craft Kit
Arts and crafts are a brilliant way to secure a bit of peace and quiet over the festive period. This kit contains a pair of stripy socks, stuffing, needle and thread, and instructions on how to create your very own stuffed unicorn.
Some younger children might need a little bit of help from an adult but, at only £10, this is a budget-friendly gift that’s sure to offer hours of entertainment.
Price: £10Buy now from Amazon
19. Dobble 360
“It's magic. That's all you need to know. Dobble is the Best. Game. Ever."
Whether your children already love Dobble – the hit matching card game – or not, this 2020 update is inspired. Hello, 360 degrees!
Like the original game, every card is different and has just one picture in common with every other card in the deck.The aim is to match one of the pictures on your card with a picture on the main card. Sounds easy? No. The pictures are different sizes and in different places on every single card, which makes them hard to spot.
Dobble 360 adds another layer of difficulty as now the cards are moving. If it sounds too tricky, there are versions for younger children too, including matching letters and numbers, and one for Harry Potter fans.
20. Artie 3000 Coding Robot
This hi-tech robot is more than just a sweet face. Artie makes learning programming, geometry and maths fun for children aged seven to 11.
21. Elasti Plasti Clay and Dough
Elasti Plasti is, essentially, just goo. Non-sticky goo that expands, bubbles and stretches according to your child's every whim. But goo nonetheless, meaning it should go down a treat with kids of all ages. A great stocking filler.
Best Christmas toys for older children
22. LEGO Harry Potter Hogwarts Clock Castle
Keep them busy on Christmas morning by building this three-level LEGO version of Hogwarts Castle.
This set includes mini figures of Harry, Ron, Hermione, Fleur, Cedric, Viktor, Dumbledore and Madame Maxime. It even features a clock-changing mechanism to create time-turner time travel adventures and a ‘dance’ function to get the Yule Ball really moving.
23. RockJam RJ361 61 Key Keyboard Piano with Sheet Music Stand
For the teen who is hard to buy for, many parents suggest a keyboard. This RockJam version includes a music stand to help with practice. It has 200 rhythms and tones and Simply Piano app content for both IOS and Android.
Age: Ideal for teens
Price: £43.97Buy now from Amazon
24. Urbanears Plattan 2 Bluetooth Headphones
“They are fab. They do not fall off when running, and they clean easily.”
Most teens love to be plugged in, and over-ear headphones are hugely popular. These Urbanears Plattan Bluetooth headphones are a Mumsnet best buy.
Connect your device and enjoy a massive 30+ hours of uninterrupted listening at a 10-metre range, and collapse for packing convenience. These headphones also come with a navigation knob so you can skip tracks or easily adjust the volume when on the move.
With seven colours to choose from, and the ability to share music (you can plug another pair into the set), they make a great gift for any music-lover.
Age: Ideal for teens
25. Fortnite Nerf Blaster
The Nerf Blaster combines two key interests of many children and tweens – Nerf and Fortnite. It's a replica of the real blaster from the game, with a detachable barrel that can be customised. Take cover!
Verdict: top Christmas toy for 2020
When it comes to the best toy to buy this Christmas, there is strong competition. For babies, the Grimm’s Rainbow has enduring appeal so will last for several years to come and look stylish. Win-win.
The best toy for preschoolers has to be the Paw Patrol Dino Truck (Chase is on the case!). Baby Yoda is sure to be the talk of the playground at primary schools and, for teens, the Urbanears Bluetooth Headphones will keep them happy, and give you a bit of peace and quiet. Happy Christmas!
How we chose our recommendations
We believe that, when it comes to products for children, the real experts are parents who’ve already been there and tried them out. As a result, most of our recommendations for Christmas 2020 have come from Mumsnet users themselves.
Of course, Christmas is a time when lots of new products are launched, so we also scoured the new releases lists from the likes of Argos and Hamleys to come up with gifts that are related to products they already loved – like the new version of Dobble or the Paw Patrol Dino Truck.
Some organised Mumsnetters have already started their Christmas shopping so we were able to check their views on the quality of the items.
We then divided the products by age range and made sure there we covered a range of price points and interests so there really was something for everyone.
Why you should trust us
We work hard to provide unbiased, independent advice you can trust. We do sometimes earn revenue through affiliate (click-to-buy) links in our articles. This helps us fund more helpful articles like this one.
Mumsnet carries some affiliate marketing links, so if you buy something through our posts, we may get a small share of the sale, more details here).
Header image by Hobbycraft