Top Toys for 2019
Holiday Toy Watchlist
Get’em Before They Are Gone Gaming Checklist Owleez Blume Dolls Candy Locks LoL Surprise OMG Swag Fashion Doll Kindi Kids Nintendo Switch Lite SEGA Genesis Mini Pokémon Shield/Sword Shenmue 3 Jedi Fallen Order Death Stranding COD: Modern Warfare
This holiday season will be jam-packed with dolls, games, collectibles & electronics that will be flying into peoples online carts
BOPIS (Buy-Online-Pick-Up-In-Store) is an Effective Tool For Conversion
- Top toys and toy trends for 2019
- Retailers toy plans for 2019
- Best toys for ages 1 to 3
- Best toys for ages 3 and up
- Best toys for ages 5 and up
- Best toys for ages 9 and up
- Best toys for ages 14 and up
Retailers’ toy lists are some of the earliest insights into the Black Friday season. More than a month before the first official Black Friday ads drop, Walmart, Target and Amazon release lists of the top toys of the season, to drum up shopping hype and get parents thinking about their kids’ wishlists.
They toy list hype got started early this year, despite Black Friday falling nearly a week later, compared to 2018:
- Walmart released its toy list (40+ toys chosen by kids) on Aug. 29 (a day earlier than in 2018)
- Target released its Top Toys for the holidays list on Sept. 3 (a day earlier than in 2018)
- Amazon dropped its Top 100 (116 to be precise) holiday toy list on Sept. 9 (five days later than in 2018).
These lists provide an early sneak peak of which toys are likely to be in high demand — and possibly sell out — this year.
Top toy trends for 2019
Target, Amazon, and Walmart differ on which toys are the hottest. But the similarities in their lists reveal these top trends for holiday season 2019 and the types of toys kids are going to want (prices below are subject to change):
1. Interactive/nurturing toys are back in a big way
Over the past few years, we’ve seen the rise of Fingerlings, FurReal Friends and other toys that interact to touch and sound and act as a stand-in for actual pets. The category is getting even more crowded this year, with toys such as:
- Owleez, Flying Baby Owl Interactive Toy Pink ( $124.99 ): This toy, featured on Target’s list, won’t even be released until Oct. 4, so it’s very much a holiday newcomer. The toy literally flies, and your child needs to teach it how.
- Juno My Baby Elephant ( $77.00 ): Train, love and play with your very own baby elephant, Wildluvs Juno My Baby Elephant! With an astonishing animated trunk, floppy moving ears, highly expressive eyes, a wagging tail, plus interactive accessories, Juno comes alive! From the moment you switch Juno on, you’ll be amazed at this realistic baby elephant over 150 lifelike movements and sounds! As you interact and play with Juno, her silly personality will unfold. Using her cute peanut and mouse accessories, you can teach her special tricks and even play games together! Feed Juno her peanut and she may eat it or throw it; give her her toy mouse and she may swing it around as she sings sweet songs to it! The more you play with Juno, the more tricks and games shell reveal. With your help, Juno will learn how to eat peanuts, bow, play music with her trumpeting trunk, play peek-a-boo, dance and more! After a fun-filled day of play, fold Junos legs and cuddle with her pet her trunk and shell even give you a kiss! Bring home your perfect best friend, Wildluvs Juno My Baby Elephant!
- Hatching Toothless Interactive Baby Dragon ( $83.96 ): Hatch and train your very own baby dragon Toothless! Your favorite dragon from How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World comes to life with light-up eyes, movements and interactive sounds! Become the best of friends with Hatching Toothless as you teach him how to fly and plasma blast, feed him and play games with him! To encourage baby Toothless to hatch, rock his egg back and forth to hear him growl; tap to hear him tap back, and shake and tilt the egg to get him aggravated once he’s agitated enough, he’ll be ready to hatch! Outside of his egg, Toothless is ready for fun and adventure. Establish your riders bond with baby Toothless by placing your hands on his head, then teach him how to fly and plasma blast! As you guide Toothless through the sky, his ears move and wings flap, and he lets out dragon roars! Charge up the plasma blast by holding his belly, and let go to release his mouth glows as he charges and blasts. If Hatching Toothless gets hungry, feed him a snack with his fish accessory. This playful baby dragon loves to play games with you! Ask him questions and hell respond with head and wing movements, and lights and sounds; see who wins in a roaring competition; pass him around in a game of hot potato as you avoid being the one holding him when he plasma blasts; and play music to see him rock back and forth to the beat! At the end of an action-packed day, place your baby Toothless back into the egg base for a dragon nap. Bring your own baby dragon Toothless to life and build the bond of a lifetime with Hatching Dragon! Hatch, train and play!
2. Gaming consoles and tie-ins invade the toy lists
Gaming systems are poised to be top toys of the 2019 season. We saw popular gaming bundles sell out last year, and some consoles and video game tie-in toys made the toy lists this year:
- Nintendo Switch Lite (Choose a Color) ( $258.75 ): Nintendo Switch Lite, a new version of the Nintendo Switch system that’s optimized for personal, handheld play. Nintendo Switch Lite is a small and light Nintendo Switch system at a great price. With a built-in +Control Pad, and a sleek, unibody design,
- Sega Genesis Mini – Sega ( $92.99 ): The iconic SEGA Genesis console that defined a generation of gaming returns in a slick, miniaturized unit. The SEGA Genesis Mini console is loaded with 40 legendary games and is plug and play ready right out of the box! Games will be announced in four waves of 10 games.
- Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Trilogy [3 Discs], This COD Modern Warfare compilation will include 3 of Activision’s all-time most popular titles in one collection. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare Modern Warfare 2 Modern Warfare 3 PLUS there will be DLC content included with the Modern Warfare 2 content that will include 5 maps. PS3 product details: 2 Amaray Cases enclosed in an O-Sleeve 1st Amaray will contain MW1 & MW2 2nd Amaray will contain MW3
3. Kid influencers expand their reach
Parents know just how much of an influence that kid influencers (and their YouTube presence) can have on their own children’s toy wish lists. And retailers are taking note. Walmart, for example, is offering 40 new toys from kid-influencer brands this year. Examples include:
- Tic Tac Toy XOXO Friends Multipack ($9.98): From Walmart’s list, we have this toy from the Toy Makers XOXO YouTube series creators. There are 12 unique packs to collect, each with eight boxes. Inside the boxes are various surprises, including toys, wigs and other goodies.
- Ryan’s World Mega Mystery Treasure Chest (Target Exclusive, $79.99): From Target’s toy list (and from the popular YouTube toy review channel Ryan Toys Review), comes this treasure chest. It’s all about the unboxing experience with this toy, which contains secret compartments, all containing mystery toys.
4. Unboxing/Surprise Toys show no signs of slowing down
This genre of toys is called Unboxing toys, Mystery Toys, Surprise toys and other names.
What these toys all have in common is that kids won’t know which toy they’re getting until they’ve removed it from its box or shell. What’s the appeal in getting something for your child when you don’t even know what it is? It’s all about the unboxing experience for kids, the element of surprise and the collectibility of these toy lines.
Parents may remember Hatchimals and L.O.L. Surprise! balls from recent years, and these toys still exist. This year, there are a few newcomers:
- Poopsie Surprise toys (price varies): This line has many iterations and is featured on all three toy lists (Amazon, Target and Walmart). Your child receives a kit that could contain one of several collectible dolls and/or customizable slimes (extremely popular in their own right). In the case of the Poopsie Rainbow Surprise Dolls line (on Amazon’s list), your child can use the kit’s slimes to customize the dolls’ clothing. The sheer number of objects and compartments in some of these kits create an unboxing experience like none other.
- Blume Dolls ($9.88): From Amazon’s and Walmart’s lists, these dolls arrive planted in a flower pot. When your child adds water, the doll “grows” out of the pot like a plant. The pot also contains unique accessories for the doll.
5. Beloved characters are still popular
The holiday season’s top toys often reflects what’s cool in kids’ entertainment, and movie/TV tie-in toys are well represented in the retailers’ toy lists:
- PJ Masks Super Moon Mega Rover ($29.82) and PJ Seeker ($54.99): Amazon and Target have a few toys from the popular kids’ show. The PJ Seeker is a bit more involved and includes more moving parts, but both light up and shoot projectiles.
- PAW Patrol Super Mighty Pups Lookout Tower ($99.99): Featured on Target’s and Walmart’s lists, this toy is almost 3 feet tall and serves as a mission control center for six PAW Patrol figures. The tower has elevators, lights, car launchers and other bells and whistles.
- Barbie Malibu House ($99.99) and Barbie Dream Plane ($74): Barbie’s house was one of the top toys last year, and her two-story Malibu pad made Target’s toy list this year. The Dream Plane, meanwhile, is on Walmart’s list, seats three dolls and features working overhead compartments, a snack cart and other air travel fixtures.
Retailers’ holiday toy plans
Toys ‘R’ Us’s exit in 2018 has left a vacuum for the major players (Walmart, Target and Amazon) to step into. While Amazon competes on convenience and selection, Walmart and Target are making a play for brick-and-mortar shoppers by doing the following:
Expanding their selection: Walmart is offering 25% more exclusive toys this year and 40 new toys from kid-influencer brands. Target, meanwhile, says it’s expanding its online and in-store toy selection by more than 10,000 toys. This is after expanding the square footage of its toy aisles back in 2018.
Offering exclusive toys: Walmart and Target (as they did last year) are offering select toys you can’t get anywhere else. Walmart, for example is exclusively offering a Harry Potter Invisibility Cloak and a Hover-1 Hoverboard and Kart Combo. Target, meanwhile, will announce several exclusive toys later this fall, including toy tie-ins to “Frozen 2” and “Star Wars.”
Improving the brick-and-mortar shopping experience: As it did last year, Walmart will host National Play Day (Sept. 14, 2019), offering kids and families a chance to try out the season’s hottest toys. Target, meanwhile, is starting to roll out Disney pop-up stores at 25 locations on Oct. 4. Forty more locations will open next year. These Disney pop-up stores will offer an experience similar to shopping at a Disney store and feature merchandise from Disney, Pixar, Marvel and Star Wars (including some Target-exclusive toys).
Toy-buying guide by age
Any parent, relative, or friend knows how difficult it can be to buy the right toy for the right child. One of the first descriptors when shopping for toys during the holiday season is age, and for good reason. Buying a gift too complicated for a young one, or a gift too childish for a preteen, can be a surefire way to ruin the holiday.
We’ve broken down the best gifts to give this year, specifically for each age group you might be gifting for. Some of these toys are on our list of top toys above. However, we chose others simply because they’re a good fit for an age group.
Prices below are subject to change:
Best toys for ages 1 to 18+ months
One of the hardest shopping age demographics is children under two years old. Kids at this age love to put anything and everything in their mouth, which means shoppers have to be extra diligent when it comes to picking out just the right gift. Child electronic toys work well, as long as they’re designed to handle the occasional chew, along with the occasional toss or throw.
This Elmo doll loves receiving hugs, and reciprocates with hugs. It also talks and sings, and understands English and Spanish.
Linkimals (price varies)
This line of interactive toys features a sloth, moose sheep and more. Kids can press the buttons, which produce lights and sounds to help babies learn the alphabet, numbers and colors. Linkimals can also be linked to interact with each other.
Melissa & Doug Turtle Ball Pit ($58.90)
This toy, from popular brand Melissa and Doug is a zip-up turtle ball pit filled with 60 balls. Babies can sit inside or use the zipped-up turtle as a pillow. The turtle also features holes to push the balls through, as well as different textures and attachments to encourage motor skills.
Best toys for ages 3 and up
As a parent of a child in this age group, the “Baby Shark” song is inescapable. If you’re willing to tolerate it on constant repeat, this puppet (also available in Mommy and Daddy Shark forms) sings the song when your child moves the puppet’s mouth.
Dinosaurs fascinate this age group, and this playset combines dinos, fossils, a tree house and a seaplane. Begin with this starter set for the holidays, and add on additional dinos and figures for birthdays.
LeapFrog RockIt Twist ($49.99)
This age group may not be quite old enough for regular console gaming. Bridge the gap with this hand-held gaming system, which features 12 kid-friendly games that teach literacy, math, creativity and other skills. Plus, hatch and care for three virtual pets.
Best toys for ages 5 and up
This interactive baby owl toy will be released in October. Your child will teach it to fly (yes, it can fly) and can also coax it to dance and sing.
Kindi Kids Dolls ($24.97)
Designed to help kids navigate kindergarten, these dolls interact with the various snack accessories they’re sold with. You can also buy various playsets, and your child can follow along on the Kindi Kids’ adventures via a dedicated YouTube channel.
Hot Wheels Colossal Crash Track Set ($99.99)
This set will keep your child entertained for hours with all its possibilities and configurations. It’s the biggest boosted Hot Wheels track set ever made and is more than 5 feet wide. Designed specifically to maximize collisions.
Best toys for ages 9 and up
Poopsie Rainbow Surprise Slime Kit ($69.99) and Poopsie Rainbow Surprise Dolls with DIY Fashion Slime ($54.99)
If you have a kid in elementary school, you know how fascinated they can be with slimes — and creating them. The Poopsie Rainbow Surprise Slime Kit includes 35+ surprises (DIY slime included), plus makeup. The Poopsie Rainbow Surprise Dolls with DIY Fashion Slime includes transparent clothing that can be customized with slime.
Toys that foster science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills are becoming very popular. This set allows your child to create a marble track that requires them to gravity, magnetism and kinetics to move their ball through the course.
Really Rad Robots Turbo Bot ($49.99)
This toy might also become your kid’s friend. Your elementary-school aged kid can use the remote to control the robot’s movements and use voice commands to get it to spin or dance. Best of all, the robot can be your child’s personal spy and record conversations.
Best Toys for ages 14 and up
This complex building set has 6,020 pieces and includes figures of the original founders of Hogwarts, 27 other microfigures, five dementors and other magical beasts. When assembled, it becomes an impressively detailed replica of Hogwarts Castle that measures almost 2 feet tall.
Pictionary Air ($19.99)
Your teens might even play this game with you. This cool Pictionary upgrade allows you to draw in the air via augmented reality and see your creations on phone, tablet or TV screens.
If you’re not sure what to get your middle-school or high-school-aged child, Nerf weaponry is a safe bet. With this model, your child can practice their Nerf skills with the included target. The entire kit includes 10 Nerf Rival rounds and adjustable monopod.