You may not have a kid yet, but that doesn’t mean you’re not in the market for a kids’ toy this holiday season.
We checked dozens of retailers’ top toys lists, talked to a toy expert and did our own digging to select nine of the hottest toys.
Any item on this list is sure to help you knock the socks off your niece, nephew, godchild, or any other kid you may be want to spoil this year.
For ages: 6 and up
Price: From $US14.99
The Cra-Z-Loom isn't just for friendship bracelets. Kids have also made sandals, dolls and tons of other unexpected art projects out of rubber bands. It'll keep the kid in your life creative without the mess of markers or paint.
The kit comes with a loom and 600 multicolored rubber bands. Its sale numbers have been on the rise since the summer, according to Adrienne O'Hara, the director of consumer public relations at Toys 'R' Us.
For ages: 4 - 12
Price: From $US34.99
'Despicable Me 2' was a huge summer blockbuster for kids. For Halloween, the famously adorable yellow minions from the film became a top costume, and now that the holidays have rolled around, a talking minion toy is sure to be a hit with the little ones.
In the movies, Dave loves ice cream and excels at playing video games. As a toy, Dave comes with 55 minion sayings and sound effects performed by the same guy who provides his voice in the movies. You can also press his tongue down to feed him, which eventually leads to his super fart.
For ages: 5 - 9
Price: From $US43
Forget those boring square forts you used to make by throwing a sheet over the back of some living room chairs. Crazy Forts let kids' imaginations go wild. The kit comes with 25 balls to connect 44 plastic rods.
You may want to get two kits or more if you're thinking of getting it as a group gift for siblings, and you have to provide your own sheets.
But kids can build everything from an igloo to a castle with Crazy Forts. There are easy-to-follow instruction guides on their website.
For ages: 5 - 12
Price: From $US53.99
Give the kid in your life a reason to go play outside.
The Fun Ride Zip Line lets kids up to 100 pounds slide between backyard trees up to 35 feet apart. Longer zip lines can be purchased for a higher price.
It's a fun way to exercise, plus builds an adventurous spirit.
For ages: 5 and up
What little kid doesn't want a puppy? This no-muss, no-fuss robot dog will learn his own name and respond when called. He can obey commands in English, Spanish or French and barks happily when you rub his tummy.
Zoomer comes with a USB cable for charging and you can download a free Apple or Android app to monitor the dog's training and care taking.
For ages: 4 - 12
LeapFrog LeapPad $US79.99 - $US149.99
Nabi $US99 - $US200
Tabeo From $US129.99
Kids love gadgets too. Major retailers are now stocking their toy aisles with the tech brands we all drool over. Android operating system mainly partners with tablets targeted at kids.
Some of the bigger selling points include a closed network for the device's Internet access and dozens of free preinstalled apps like the game Fruit Ninja along with storytelling and language learning apps.
Getting kids a tablet eases them into the connected world they live in. 'It creates a safe space for kids to explore the Internet,' Adrienne O'Hara, director of consumer public relations at Toys 'R' Us, said to Business Insider.
For ages: 8 - 14
Price: From $US98
LEGO released a whole line of toys in conjunction with its hit cartoon show 'Legends of Chima.' The animals in the land of Chima are at war over a mystical energy source known as Chi.
The Lion Chi Temple is one of the more extravagant locations in the show and toys in the series. After kids build the temple, they can deploy eagle tribe drones or fire a rotating tower cannon to defend the Chi.
You can also cash in on the Legends of Chima popularity at a lower price point. Figurines start at $US14.99, video games start at $US19.99 and vehicles start at $US39.99.
For ages: 3 and up
Price: From $US149.99
The Barbie Dreamhouse is a staple of the holiday wish list.
In its latest incarnation, the home has three stories and two working elevators, making it the largest Dreamhouse yet. It comes with fully furnished rooms and working lights and sound effects.
The revamped closet is the new home's biggest selling point. It's extra large to hold extra accessories, and kids can send their fashion choices from the closet on the third floor to the bathroom on the second floor using a separate 'fashion elevator.'
For ages: 9 and up
Price: From $US399
This go-kart is specifically made for easy kid-handling. It drives backward, forward and drifts to the side with 360-degree steering capabilities.
The Crazy Cart runs on two 12 volt batteries and can reach speeds of up to 12 miles per hour. The battery charge holds for up to 12 hours or 40 continuous miles.
Plus, you can steal a ride on it yourself whenever you visit. 'Every adult I talk to secretly wants it on their holiday wish list too,' said Adrienne O'Hara, the director of consumer public relations at Toys 'R' Us.
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