Activity Plush Toys

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A pile of plush toys on the bed is an idea of heaven for many little children (and quite a few adults), but if your customers are looking for a cuddly toy that has a more proactive role in playtime, an activity plush toy is the answer.

According to the latest research, manufacturers are focusing on product innovation, as there is rising demand for plush toys that are more than just a cuddly bedtime companion. With the global stuffed animal and plush toys market valued at USD 7.98 billion and set to rise at 7.61% up to 2025* it’s certainly a category you don’t want to ignore.

So what constitutes an activity plush? Well, it’s a cuddly toy that has another purpose - it might be a pull-along toy, or include lights and sounds to encourage learning. As always, Baby Brands Direct has chosen a selection from much-loved brands such as Leap Frog, VTech, Little Bird and Lamaze, to appeal to a range of ages.


Why do activity plush toys sell so well?

Most of us are drawn to plush toys - they are very appealing after all. But a child may have a plethora of soft toys, so finding one that is a little bit different is the key. For customers buying a present, choosing a soft toy that has a distinguishing feature is important if they don’t want it to become lost in a pile of cuddly toys. The other benefit is that many activity plush toys have an educational element, which particularly appeals to parents. We all know that during the coronavirus pandemic, while children were not at nursery or school, there was a massive rise in demand for educational toys. Indeed, the global educational toys market is predicted to increase by $ 24.30 bn up to 2024 - a 15% increase.**

Mindfulness and mental health

The focus on children’s mental health has also been a major focus during the pandemic, as children have been separated from friends and their usual routines, and people are recognising that ‘school learning’ is just one part of a rounded education. Some of our activity plush toys acknowledge that. For instance, My Pal Scout and My Pal Violet are adorable puppy pals from major brand LeapFrog, each introducing children to words, numbers and feelings through 14 activities. VTech’s Hope, the Rainbow Husky, meanwhile, encourages nurturing play. Understand her barks using the magic stethoscope and find out if she is hungry, ill or has hurt her leg through the way she talks and moves. Then use the accessories including syringe and bandage to make her feel better.

Developmental benefits of activity plush toys

While plush toys encourage nurturing behaviour - so are important for both boys and girls - activity plush toys have an added bonus. Pull along plush toys can help with gross motor development - encouraging a small child to grab the ‘lead’ of their Little Bird dog or unicorn, for example - as well as fine motor skills. The Lamaze Octivity Time is a lovable octopus that babies will love, but with his spinning starfish, mirror, squeaky head and more, he encourages babies to use their senses, learn about cause and effect and lots more. Older children, meanwhile, will love to have VTech’s Myla the Magical Unicorn in their bedroom. She is a lovely plush animal, who will appeal to a budding make-up artist, as her horn, eyes and wings can change colour with her magical make-up palette. When she’s looking great, pick up the magic microphone and sing songs with her.

Benefits for retailers

Activity plush toys have plenty of shelf appeal - after all, who wouldn’t want to take home some of these cuddly characters? The added play and educational value means that kids will be able to convince their adults to let them have just ‘one more cuddly toy’, and adults will see the added play value in toys with additional educational benefits for their children.