If you’re the person who obsessively clicks your pen or taps your fingers during meetings, you may benefit from a fidget toy. They’re huge among kids and adults today because of their ability to provide focus, stress relief, and soothing sensory experiences in a pinch. With so many features and functions on the market, it can be difficult to choose the right fidget toy for your specific needs. We did the research and found these fun, top-rated toys that can help reduce stress, improve coordination, and satisfy the senses.
Why invest in a fidget toy?
Whether you’re 9 or 99 years old, these unique little toys can help improve concentration and learning by allowing your brain to actively focus on the task at hand through small, repetitive movements and manipulations to avoid overwhelming distractions. This can be especially beneficial for overworked adults with full plates and children who live with ADHD, autism, or other developmental disorders that make it more difficult to retain information.
What should you know before buying?
Keep these key factors in mind when shopping for fidget toys:
- Preference: Think about what you (or the receiver) want in a fidget toy. Not everybody finds the same sensations engaging and relaxing. Some are overwhelmed by too much variety, for example, while others enjoy having different options. Think about activities and motions you enjoy, and choose a toy that supports that passion.
- Desired Outcome: Looking to calm anxiety and ease stress? Or does your child need help developing motor skills? Sensory toys can help focus and distract minds, depending on the targeted issue, so keep in mind the receiver’s needs and challenges when shopping.
- Variety: If you want a cornucopia of toys, you can have it. Want something simple? Perhaps a reliably satisfying stress ball will do the trick. With just a bit of research, you’ll find tons of toys with various functions and purposes.
Is there any psychology or science behind fidget toys?
According to a study conducted by Scientific American Magazine, fidget toys “aren’t just a hype.” Scientific research suggests that people require different stimulations and environments in order to completely focus on a given task and produce their best work. What’s considered optimal conditions can change throughout the day. That’s why these small, handy toys are much more than toys, as they can provide just the right amount of physical and mental stimulation, whether at work or school, to help keep your mind clear, calm, and on track.
BunMo Poppin' Pipes Sensory Toys
Tons of ways to pop, stretch, and connect.
Pros: These colorful Poppin’ Pipes from BunMo are a fun, imaginative way to keep fingers busy, especially for kids and adults with special needs. Pop tubes let you pop, stretch, and connect to your heart’s content for tons of attention-grabbing fun in the classroom, at home, or on the go—simply stretch or compress pipes and listen for an engaging pop sound! Poppin’ Pipes are designed to help those living and learning with autism and ADHD, helping form and encourage fine motor skills and satisfy sensory processing disorders.
Cons: Tube construction wears quickly with rough play.
Bottom Line: Pull and pop your way to a happier, calmer mind and improve motor skills in children with these easy, entertaining, textured fidget tubes.
Yeetec Wacky Tracks Snap Toys
Create endless, colorful lines and shapes.
Pros: Snap and click your way to calmer days with these Wacky Track fidget blocks from Yeetec. Made from durable, smooth plastic in bright colors that boost interest and energy, these bendable block toys include 24 links that pivot and lock into five different positions. Create any shapes you want, including letters, numbers, and symbols. Wacky Track helps children and adults reduce stress, increase focus and attention, and boost intelligence and imagination development.
Cons: You may need to help younger children snap these blocks together, as it requires a little force.
Bottom Line: You’ll experience endless bending and building options with these connectable cubes that encourage focus and imagination.
DoDoMagXanadu Dodecagon Fidget Cube
Perfect to flick, click, roll, and spin.
Pros: Curb wandering minds and idol hands with the 12-sided fidget toy from DoDoMagxanadu that helps reduce stress and anxiety for a calmer, more focused mindset. The soft, fun-filled cube boasts a smooth, surprisingly durable surface rich with clicking, spinning, and rolling options and multiple fidget features, including gears, buttons, silicone balls, and a joystick. It’s a contemporary, thoughtful cube, designed pocket-sized and lightweight so you can easily keep one handy at home and work whenever stress and anxiety strike.
Cons: Clicking features on this cube are a tad loud, but the noise should decrease with use.
Bottom Line: Looking for a new cube toy? Ditch the classic and invest in a creative, complex cube that doesn’t easily tire or bore anxious hands.
Finger Rock Magnetic Toy Set
Release stress with rotation games.
Pros: Build motor skills and coordination with Finger Rock’s magnetic fidget rings that also target anxiety and distraction. These multicolor rings can even help curb unwanted habits, like nail-biting and smoking, by providing much-needed distraction through soothing, repetitive movements. Each high-quality spinner ring features a convenient magnet that allows you to connect and spin all three rings at one time, on a single hand, for a satisfying sensory experience. Tired of spinning? Separate your rings for a game of table hockey or billiards.
Cons: Rings may get stuck on fingers if pushed down too far, so be careful when inserting fingers.
Bottom Line: Take these therapy rings for a spin, and enjoy the benefits of a more calm, focused mind within minutes.
ZALIK 4-Pack Pop-It Fidget Toys
Creates a satisfying feeling and sound.
Pros: Pop away anxiety and restlessness with these popular fidget sensory toys from ZALIK. Each of your four, new Pop-It toys are made from soft, flexible, 100% environmentally friendly silicone (great for physical sensory needs) and boast bright rainbow colors that help keep your mind alert and interested. Similar to bubble wrap, pop boards help active kids and adults stay focused and entertained at the sound of each pop, relaxing your mind and stimulating your senses all at once. Plus, Pop-Its are easy to clean and can last for years!
Cons: Though it doesn’t affect functionality, the consistency of rainbow colors may be different than advertised.
Bottom Line: There’s a reason these little guys are so popular among adults and kids. Squish, push, and pop to help improve motor skills and create a more peaceful state of mind.
Power Your Fun Arggh Stress Balls
Soft and malleable for sensory satisfaction.
Pros: Watch the Arggh ball from Power Your Fun change colors as you squeeze and stretch away stress—just squeeze, focus, breathe, and repeat. Each of the three squishy stress balls is designed to allow you to safely vent anxiety, stress, and anger in any environment, helping redirect negative feelings in a healthy, productive way. They also double as exercises for your hands, fingers, and wrists, as each ball is filled with a malleable, nontoxic gel that encourages the consistent opening and closing motions. They’re easy to clean and come in multiple colors and designs, including glitter and snow.
Cons: Be careful not to squeeze or pull too hard to help preserve your new fidget toys for as long as possible.
Bottom Line: Love a good stress ball? These are soft, soothing takes on harder, more traditional versions, providing extra comfort and sensory satisfaction.
Features fun tasks for the whole family.
Pros: Find your new favorite fidget toys in this huge variety pack from Hhobby Stars. With 61 toys and 31 different fidget configurations, entire families can enjoy interactive playtime together that helps calm busy minds and wiggly bodies. Choose from unique options that help you focus, like the magic rainbow ball or maze puzzle cube, or soothe your senses with classic cubes, tubes, and spinners. There’s a sensory toy for everyone! Each piece is tested and approved for your kids’ safety, so no worries over harmful materials.
Cons: This pack includes small parts, so be sure to store them away from younger children when not in use.
Bottom Line: No fussing over favorites with this expansive offering—there’s a little something for every age with tons of opportunities to bend, twist, squish, and roll.
Gain literal peace of mind, better coordination, and satisfied senses with one of these top-rated fidget toys. Pick your favorite functions, whether it’s popping, squeezing, clicking, or spinning (or all at once), and find the perfect option for your busy life.