It’s the holiday shopping season, and consumers plan to spend an average $967 on gifts, according to the National Retail Association.
Kids likely account for a hefty chunk of that change, most likely after asking Santa for that special, and especially hot, holiday toy.
So, which toys are hottest this season? Toy expert Chris Byrne, content director for Toys, Tots, Pets and More, revealed to Fox News the three most popular gifts topping this year's Christmas lists.
“Some of the big news this year are some of the smaller toys that might have been once considered stocking stuffers in the past, but are now part of the main event,” says Byrne.
One such toy is Zing’s Tumblstix: a hand-sized, light-up wobble toy. Byrne says it’s "replacing the fidget spinners" in the quirky, mesmerizing gadget arena, as kids simply “tumble [them] end over end.” Retailing for $7.99, the Tumblstix takes the trend of everyday carry toys — or “everyday play” toys — online, meaning that kids are already uploading videos of themselves pulling off impressive tricks.
The next hottest trend are squishies, says Byrne. These spongy toys trace back to Japan, where they're sold on streets or in novelty shops, but Redwood Venture’s "Smooshy Mushy" helped bring them mainstream. Sold exclusively in Wal-mart for anywhere between $2.99 and $14.99, these squishy toys can be stuffed into tiny spaces or flattened with the palm of your hand, only to slowly rise back to their original shapes. "Kids love the animals and they love collecting them,” says Byrne. But what makes squishies so satisfying and sought-after? Byrne says it’s all about the “slow-rise.”
And the biggest must-have this season? WowWee’s Fingerlings, which are hand-held, interactive monkey toys that climb and coo on your finger. “The really cool thing about that is, when you get these hot trend fad toys, they don’t do that much,” says Byrne, but that's OK — they're still super fun. But be warned, the “Fingerlings” should retail for around $14.99, so don't fall victim to online scammers charging much more. “We recommend you don’t go out and spend $100 for a $14.99 toy,” says Byrne. “I have it on good authority Santa will send an IOU, and these will be back in stock right after the New Year,” jokes Byrne.
Be sure to check out the video above to see some of these hot holidays toys in action.