Best stocking stuffer for kids

Holiday & Costumes

Stocking stuffers are small and affordable gifts that add to the magic of the holidays.

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Which stocking stuffer for kids is best?

Prepping for the holiday season can be hectic, and it’s easy to neglect the little stockings hung from the mantel on Christmas morning. Let your kids know they made it onto Santa’s nice list with stocking-sized gifts.

Before you make your list and check it twice, learn more about the key considerations and features to look for in a stocking stuffer for kids. Play Visions Crayola Bathtub Crayons with Crayola Color Bath Drops are fit for any holiday wish list and are sure to enchant a kid on Christmas morning. 

What to know before you buy a stocking stuffer

Size

Stocking stuffers come in a range of sizes. You’ll want to pick a stocking stuffer that fits in a stocking, but don’t confine yourself to stocking stuffers that fit into a stocking with zero visibility. Oversize candy canes, rolled up magazines and medium-size toys all fit within a stocking but stick out the top for an exciting teaser of the stocking’s contents. 

Age group 

To determine if it’s a good choice for the kid in your life, you should always look at a toy’s age rating. 

Young children and toddlers love opening up stockings on Christmas morning because they’re naturally inclined to explore with their hands. When shopping for toddlers, choose items too large to pose a choking hazard. Pick play-inspired gifts like teething toys, finger puppets, board books, bath toys and tiny stuffed animals. 

Elementary school-aged kids will love gifts like art supplies, bath products and bandaids themed with their favorite cartoon characters, silly putty, temporary tattoos, water bottles, tech gifts, walkie talkies, binoculars, grade-level appropriate chapter books and card games. 

Selecting stocking stuffers for tweens and teens can be challenging, as you’re up against discerning tastes (aka pickiness). When in doubt, stick to a tween or teen’s hobbies and interests. Makeup, travel-sized toiletries, temporary hair color and self-care products are all great gifts for this age group. Phone accessories, new headphones or earbuds, and gift cards are all definite wins for gifts for tweens and teens.

What to look for in a quality stocking stuffer

Classics

It’s hard to beat the classics. Since stockings are a tradition steeped in history, it’s fitting to slip at least one nostalgic gift in. 

One of the most traditional stocking stuffers is fruit, specifically citrus fruit like oranges. Oranges were a luxury during the Great Depression, which made this stuffer a bright and special treat. Nowadays, kids may be accustomed to eating fruit all the time, but it’s still a fun treat to receive. Teaching a kid the tradition behind what goes into their stocking can add even more meaning to the holidays.

Other classic gifts you may have grown up with in your own stocking include new socks, cute children’s themed toothbrushes, headbands, hairbows, mints, gum and lip balm. 

Candy 

What kid wouldn’t be thrilled to receive their favorite sweet treats on Christmas morning? Candy canes and Hershey’s Kisses are classic choices, but you can’t go wrong with your youngster’s favorite candy, such as  Sour Patch Kids, Reese’s Pieces, etc. 

Books

Think reading is a dying art? Not if you can help it. Gift a child an age-appropriate book. “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom” and “The Hungry Caterpillar” are favorites for small kids. “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” and “Judy Moody” are beloved among grade schoolers. For middle schoolers, “Hatchet” by Gary Pauslen and “Brown Girl Dreaming” by Jacqueline Woodson are great picks. For high schoolers, pick books in their favorite genre or go for hits such as “Catcher in the Rye” or “The Hobbit.”

Tech

Tech-based stocking stuffers aren’t quite as economical as most of your options, but they’re sure to make for a memorable gift that a youngster will use often. Look for tech small enough to fit into a stocking, like new earbuds, a Nintendo Switch, a smartwatch or even a small reading tablet. 

How much you can expect to spend on a stocking stuffer for kids

You can easily stuff a stocking with gifts for less than $30 altogether, with many small toys and sweet treats costing only a couple of dollars each. Expect to spend more if you’re buying larger toys, new tech gadgets or gift cards for older kids. 

Stocking stuffer for kids FAQ

Do toiletries make good stocking stuffers? 

A. Toiletries are a classic stocking stuffer for kids and make for affordable, practical and versatile gifts. Just be sure to appeal to young ones with toiletries that have fun themes. For example, a plain tube of toothpaste or mini bottle of shampoo won’t elicit the sheer joy that a Paw Patrol, Spongebob or My Little Pony version will.

How can you lower the amount of waste you create with stocking stuffer trash? 

A. Choosing low waste stocking stuffers is a noble goal that’s totally doable. Try baking your own cookies or candy from scratch and wrapping them in reusable beeswax wrap for a gift whose wrapper won’t end up in a landfill. Gift your child brightly colored reusable straws; zero-waste food storage in their favorite color for lunch; books from bookstores committed to sustainability; and socks or other garments made from recycled materials. 

What’s the best stocking stuffer for kids to buy?

Top stocking stuffer for kids 

Play Visions Crayola Bathtub Crayons with Crayola Color Bath Drops

Play Visions Crayola Bathtub Crayons With Crayola Color Bath Drops

What you need to know: For the kid who loves arts and crafts, this set of bathtub crayons and crayola color fizzy bath drops will renew bath time with delight. 

What you’ll love: Sixty fizz tablets add pigment to bath water, and waxy, washable color crayons allow young ones to doodle on the surface of the tub. Clean up is easy.

What you should consider: Some porous tub surfaces will stain from the crayon pigment. If your tub’s finish is porous, it’s not a good idea to risk it.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top stocking stuffer for the money

Scratch Art Rainbow Mini Notes

Scratch Art Rainbow Mini Notes 

What you need to know: A cute and small stocking stuffer, kids of all ages will enjoy using it.

What you’ll love: Create fun and creative designs with these scratch notes.

What you should consider: The scratch stylus is pointy and isn’t safe for toddlers and younger. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Mad Libs Christmas Carol Mad Libs

Mad Libs Christmas Carol Mad Libs 

What you need to know: A classic gift, it provides hours of fun and engagement for kids who enjoy word play.

What you’ll love: An affordable stocking stuffer ideal for kids who love games, it’s just like the Mad Libs from your own youth, only featuring new Christmas-themed stories that appeal to all generations of players.

What you should consider: If a kid isn’t big into reading and writing, they may find this game unappealing. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon 

 

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Evelyn Waugh writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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