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The Best Toys for Infants That Are Engaging and Fun
Last updated: 6 Oct 2023
When it comes to nurturing a young one, toys play an undeniable role. They're not just playthings, but vital tools that stimulate a baby's development and make learning fun, right from infancy.
Our carefully curated list of the top-rated toys for infants in 2023 is not only sure to light up your little one's eyes but also cater to their diverse growing needs. Exceptional quality, safety standards, and the ability to engage and entertain make these products stand out in the bustling toy market. And instead of a mere listing, we've created a comprehensive guide, full of valuable insights and tips, to help you discover the perfect toys for your precious bundle of joy.
The Ultimate Buyer's Guide for Choosing Toys for Infants
Choosing the perfect toy for your little bundle of joy can often seem like a monumental task. With countless options available, how do you sift through them all to find the toys that are not only fun and entertaining, but also safe, educational, and suitable for your infant’s developmental stages? But you don’t have to worry for much longer since we’ve got you covered with this comprehensive guide. Below, we’ll carefully break down the key features you should be considering when you’re in the market for toys for your infant.
Your baby’s safety is paramount, so you’ll want to be extra careful as you search for products. Avoid toys with small, detachable parts that could be potential swallowing hazards. Also, make sure the toys use non-toxic materials because, let’s face it, everything a baby gets their hands on will inevitably end up in their mouth. Steer clear of toys with sharp edges, points, or long cords that could pose a risk of injury or strangulation. And remember to check if there are any product recalls or safety warnings associated with the toy you’re thinking about purchasing.
Toys aren’t just about fun and games. They’re also about development. The age range specified on a toy’s packaging is not merely a suggestion, but a guideline for safety and developmental appropriateness. Toys designed for older children may contain small parts unsuitable and unsafe for infants. So aim for toys that align with your infant’s age and developmental stage, so they not only entertain but also stimulate your little one’s growth.
Infant toys that offer a rich sensory experience are a fantastic tool for their development. Engage your baby’s senses with toys that boast a variety of textures, colors, sounds, and shapes. Musical toys, soft toys, bright and colorful toys — the options are endless. Multi-sensory toys are great at encouraging exploration and helping the little ones understand the world around them.
Motor Skills Development
Toys that encourage babies to utilize their hands and fingers are fantastic at developing motor skills. Opt for toys that your baby can grasp, squeeze, or move around, like soft blocks or rattles. These toys not only entertain but also foster the development of those motor skills as well as hand-eye coordination.
Infants aren’t always very gentle with their toys. This is why your chosen toys need to be durable enough to withstand some rough handling, chewing, and even the occasional throw! In addition to ensuring safety, durable toys also provide more bang for your buck as they last longer.
It’s never too early to start learning. Toys with educational value are a great investment in your baby’s development. Look for toys that introduce basic concepts, like shape sorters or simple puzzles, to help your baby begin to understand shapes, colors, and cause and effect.
Easy To Clean
Infants and mess go hand in hand. Choosing toys that are easy to clean ensures that your baby’s items remain hygienic and saves you a great deal of cleaning effort. So try to find toys that you can wipe clean easily or ones that are machine washable.
Embark on an adventure of fun and learning with the Melissa & Doug GO Tots Wooden Schoolyard Tumble. These whimsical characters offer a world of movement, tumbling and twirling in a colorful wooden schoolyard. This versatile haven features a lively playground on one side and an interactive classroom on the other, complete with desks and a built-in handle for easy transport. Watch as the tots slide, seesaw, swing, and spin, igniting a world of kinetic play that opens doors to exploring cause and effect through charming motion-driven moments.
This five-piece set — which includes eight collectible characters — not only encourages exploratory, skill-building play but also promotes fine and gross motor skills. The relatable diverse characters, appealing shapes, and enticing textures foster connections and ignite a sense of curiosity in children aged 12 months to two years. Presenting more than just a toy, this product uses FSC-certified materials, supporting responsible forestry and offering environmental, social, and economic benefits. And thanks to all these incredible features, this infant toy is our top pick overall.
Experience the revolution of playtime with the Bright Starts Oball Easy Grasp Classic Ball — the most perfect ball ever created. Designed to enhance your infant’s motor skills, this 4-inch diameter ball features a flexible and award-winning design. It comes with 32 large finger holes, allowing babies of all ages to grip, catch, and throw the ball with ease. Babies will love the soft construction that’s perfect for their little hands to grasp and play.
The Oball, with its easy-care material, wipes clean effortlessly, helping to keep germs and dirt at bay. Lightweight at just 1 pound, this is a great, affordable toy for both travel and at-home play. It’s also packaged in a compact size of 6.7 x 5.5 x 3.9 inches. Plus, there are three different color combinations to choose from, all of which are sure to engage your little one.
Unleash your little one’s musical talent early on with the Fisher-Price Newborn Toys Rattle ‘n Rock Maracas. These charming maracas are perfectly designed for tiny hands to hold, shake, and explore with ease. They come as a set of two, each adorned with soft, fabric pom-poms that are delightful to touch. But the real fun starts when your baby gives them a good shake. Colorful beads hidden inside each maraca create an enchanting rattle sound that encourages your baby to keep the beat going. They’re suitable for babies three months and older, making them the ideal playtime companion during those crucial first stages of sensory development.
But these maracas are not just toys — they’re also instruments that offer shared fun for the whole family. It’s a fantastic way to introduce your child to the world of music and rhythm, all while boosting their motor skills and auditory senses. Plus, the vibrant blue and orange colors of the maracas are sure to keep your baby visually engaged. So, if you’re in search of a toy that’s both fun and beneficial for your infant’s growth, this one is a brilliant choice.
Immerse your kiddo in a symphony of colors, textures, and languages with this multi-textured Baby Einstein Octoplush. Exceptionally soft to the touch, this huggable friend helps enhance tactile development while your infant enjoys a good cuddle. It’s more than just a plush toy — each squeeze of its head releases classical melodies, adding a layer of auditory stimulation. The octopus is also a language tutor, teaching your young ones (ages three to 36 months) to recognize colors in English, Spanish, and French.
This educational playmate comes with colorful satin patches stitched on velour legs, designed specifically to help your child understand color through repetition. For added convenience, this octopus includes a volume control, allowing you to adjust the sound level to your preference. What’s even better is that the language selector switch lets you choose the language your baby learns.
Help your child discover a world of wonder with this Tummy Time Baby Mirror from Thremhoo. This infant toy will stimulate your baby’s curiosity and cognitive development. With its mirror and soft book, your little one can discover and connect with their surroundings during tummy time. The high-contrast patterns are ideal for developing eyes and adapting to your baby’s visual evolvement.
This toy is a great tool for brain development, which strengthens leg and arm muscles, preparing your baby for their crawling journey. A unique feature lies in the sensory toy book, combining the joy of a crinkle book with the benefits of a teething toy. The interactive elements (rattle, squeaky, and crinkle paper) inside will surely captivate your toddler’s attention. And you can utilize this versatile toy during tummy time or in a sitting position, fostering parent-child interaction. Be it at home or on the go, this lightweight and foldable toy is perfect for strapping to a rear-facing car seat, stroller, or crib. Ideal for infants aged 0-12, you’re sure to get good use out of this affordable toy.
A: Infant toys are typically designed for babies aged 0 to 12 months. However, some can be suitable for toddlers as well. Just be sure to check the manufacturer's age recommendation before purchasing.
Q: How do I clean infant toys?
A: You can clean a lot of infant toys with mild soap and warm water. Ensure they are completely dry before being giving it back to your baby to avoid the growth of mold. Some toys are also dishwasher or washing machine-safe, but make sure to check the manufacturer's cleaning instructions prior to using these appliances.
Q: Are infant toys safe for my baby to chew on?
A: Most infant toys are safe to chew since toymakers know babies often explore with their mouths. They are usually made from non-toxic, BPA-free materials. Of course, you'll still need to supervise your baby while they're playing to ensure they don't choke on anything.
Q: What should I consider when choosing a toy for my infant?
A: When choosing a toy for your infant, consider their developmental stage. Look for toys that stimulate their senses, are safe for them to chew on, and are free of small parts to prevent choking. Also, consider the toy's educational value and durability.
The Mighty Moms Reviews Team’s product reviews and in-depth guides are here to help you tackle motherhood and everything that comes along with it. The content is created by The Mighty Moms Reviews Team. Mighty Moms’ editorial staff is not involved. Mighty Moms is reader-supported: When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.