What are the most popular Christmas toys for 2023?


Retro toys

These appeal to parents born in the Eighties and Nineties and inspire grandparent-led purchases, explains Rachael Simpson-Jones, editor of Toy World Magazine. “They’re collectible – and they’ve only got better with age.”

They certainly have. Classic toy car maker Matchbox’s Lego City Arctic Explorer Ship has a working crane with telescopic arm to deploy a ROV submarine and can be built using the Lego Builder app. The new Furby, meanwhile, has 600 responses to speech and touch (some sassy, apparently) and a meditation mode.

Wholesome toys 

Simpson-Jones says parents prefer brands that promote good values and teach important lessons. This is why Spider-Man is still so popular and why newer names such as Paw Patrol, Gabby’s Dollhouse and Bluey that promote kindness and inclusivity are bestsellers. “It’s a competitive space and the most wholesome brands are dominating,” she confirms. 

Sensory toys

Simpson-Jones predicts the interactive CoComelon Boo Boo JJ Doll, which was a bestseller last year, will be back in the charts. “Parents have grown more interested in tactile toys and the effect they have on their children.”

Educational toys

If Simpson-Jones had to guess which toy might be the runaway surprise bestseller, she’d pick Bio Beasts Beast Lab Shark, a chemistry set where children must add the correct measurements of potions including fossil fragments and skin scrapings to create a roaring shark beast. 

“It’s a proper wow toy – it’s so theatrical; when you see it in action it’s genuinely cool,” she says. “But it also has tons of play value: role play, education, immersion, creativity and surprise reveal – how can it not be massive?”

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