Best Princess Toys

Updated January 2022
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Buying guide for Best princess toys

Young children take on many roles when they play, from explorers to heroes, and one of the most popular is undoubtedly the princess. Most children come across princesses at some point, with many glamorous and headstrong characters portrayed in pop culture, particularly in fairy tales and Disney stories. 

Youngsters like to play with and act like princesses, which allows them to explore worlds of fantasy and creativity. Fortunately, there is an abundance of options when it comes to princess toys: some are specifically modeled after traditional and new princess characters in film and TV, and others are more generic, embodying the spirit of a princess and leaving the details up to a child’s imagination.

With so many choices in princess toys, deciding which one to buy can be overwhelming. Our buying guide includes pointers on what to keep in mind as you shop, how to narrow down the options, and a few ideas about how princesses can be educational and inspiring. Don’t forget to take a look at a few princess toys we think are among the best.

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Princesses are a diverse bunch in pop culture, offering children a range of personalities to look up to. Some are magical, some are warriors, and they all have skills ranging from archery to swimming.

Key considerations

Type

Princess toys come in a variety of forms, from those that are meant to be played with to those designed to be displayed. Here are the main options.

Dolls: These are the most popular choices when it comes to princess toys. Dolls come in various sizes, from a few inches to a foot tall and larger. These are typically made of plastic with fabric costumes and synthetic realistic hair. Most dolls have some articulated joints so kids can position them in various ways. Collectible dolls intended for display may have fewer points of articulation. Many princess dolls come with different outfits and accessories.

Playsets: These toys are slightly more comprehensive and typically feature movable characters, accessories, and an interactive environment. Playsets tend to be easy to store and transport. Some come in a box that opens up for playtime and closes for storage as needed. Playsets can be big or small, which largely determines the price. You might decide that buying a playset is preferable to buying lots of individual toys. In addition to playsets, there are also elaborate playhouses that kids can turn into their very own princess castles.

Wearables: Plenty of children love to dress up and play pretend, and there is no shortage of tiaras and other princess-themed wearables that add to role-playing games. These tend to be more suitable for older children because they include small parts such as earrings and necklaces that could pose a choking hazard for very young kids.

Plush toys: Some children prefer softer toys for playtime or simply want something to cuddle at bedtime. There are plush princess toys, and some include built-in recordings that let the doll sing or speak words or phrases.

Activities and games: Some princess toys appeal to those kids who enjoy crafts. These may involve activities such as coloring, decorating, or drawing to foster creativity. You can also find princess-themed playing cards and board games.

Trademarked vs. generic

Princess toys can be modeled after a specific princess from a popular story or movie or be a generic toy with no tie to popular culture. You know best what your children prefer. They may love one character for a while but grow tired of it when they discover a new character. Generic princess toys allow children to create their own characters and offer many creative playtime possibilities.

Age range

It’s important to match the toy to your child’s age so that playtime is fun, engaging, and safe. Most toys indicate a recommended age range and a minimum age guideline. If you have very young children, watch for toys that include small accessories that can be easily lost or become a choking hazard. 

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Did You Know?
Children can adorn their world with princesses if they desire. In addition to toys, children might enjoy princess decorations, clothing, and linens.
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Features

Collectibles

Not all princess toys are for playing; some are for display. For slightly older children and even adults, there are collectible dolls, action figures, and figurines for decorating a room and showing off on a shelf. These tend to be highly detailed and may include accessories too. They often cost more than princess toys meant to be played with.

Brands

There are a few popular companies and brands that offer princess toys in their specific styles.

Barbie: One of the most iconic dolls, Barbie offers a variety of princess-styled figures for children to play with. These Barbie dolls typically include a variety of colorful, elegant costumes with elaborate hairstyles, tiaras, shoes, veils, and other accessories.

Funko: This maker of countless iconic 4-inch vinyl figurines mines both current events and pop culture for inspiration. Funko offers a range of princess-themed toys, most based on Disney animated films, including Ariel, Tiana, Moana, and Merida, among many others. Vinyl figures are not intended for interactive play. Rather, they’re eye-catching, stylized toys designed for display. Funko also makes a line of plush toys that includes Disney princesses. 

LEGO: The Danish toymaker has partnered with Disney to offer a series of building sets geared toward youngsters and featuring popular mini-dolls inspired by animated films. Mini-dolls are larger than minifigs, with rounder features and bigger eyes. Notable Disney princesses available in these sets include Belle, Rapunzel, Cinderella, Anna, and Elsa.

Snow White was the first Disney princess, appearing in the film Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs that debuted in 1937. It took 13 years for the next princess, Cinderella, to make her appearance.

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Accessories

Disney princess playset: Disney Princess Pop-Up Palace
This Disney-inspired playset offers children a chance to engage with some of their favorite characters. Though it’s a bit pricey, it is high quality and features decorations and accessories inspired by Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, and Cinderella.

Disney princess costume: Disney Moana Adventure Outfit
For those seeking a costume for parties, celebrations, or playtime, this officially licensed Moana outfit is a top pick. This unique, high-quality costume is inspired by the tenacious 16-year-old adventurer who serves as a terrific role model.

Disney princess doll: Mattel Disney Princess Tiana Bath Doll
This reasonably priced Tiana doll is made by a trusted name in toys and is a great choice for youngsters who want a fun Disney princess to play with in the pool or bath. 

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Did You Know?
Pets can enjoy princess toys too! Dog owners can find princess toys for their canines as well as princess costumes for their pets to wear at Halloween. 
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Pricing

Inexpensive: Simple dolls or plush princess toys, including Funko vinyls, cost $15 or less.

Mid-range: Most princess toys cost between $15 and $40, including more elaborate dolls, playsets, and role-playing attire. Some collectible Funko vinyls and smaller LEGO builds are also available in this range.

Expensive: For over $50, you can find collectible princess toys, playhouses, and comprehensive playsets. More elaborate LEGO Disney sets fall in this range as well.

Tips

  • Buy princess toys for any child. All things princesses are mostly marketed to young girls, but toys, colors, and playtime aren’t regulated by gender. Boys can enjoy playing with princess toys too.
  • Buy princess toys from trusted retailers. Princess toys are very popular, which unfortunately leads to disreputable sellers trying to scam consumers into buying lesser-quality products. Only buy toys from trusted manufacturers and retailers to ensure safety and quality.
  • Clean toys periodically. Regularly disinfect or wash toys to prevent odor and bacteria buildup, especially if the toys are frequently played with outside or shared among kids. Keeping them clean will also help the toys last longer.
  • Store toys when they’re not in use. It helps to have a dedicated storage space for toys where they can remain safe and out of the way. While some might be put on display, kids can learn responsibility by caring for their toys and storing them properly.
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All children enjoy playing with toys. When your child moves on to something new or grows out of a toy, consider donating it to a local shelter or charity. 

FAQ

Q. Are princess toys educational?

A. Playing with toys encourages creativity, particularly wearables, playsets, and playhouses that allow children to explore the limits of their imagination. Princess toys can teach independence for those kids playing by themselves and encourage sharing and cooperation when playing in a group. They can also instill a sense of responsibility for those children who are ready to care for and maintain their toys.

Most princess toys don’t tend to fall under the STEM category of educational toys, but LEGO builds can enhance dexterity, coordination, and spatial awareness. They also reward planning and patience.

Q. Who are the most popular princesses?

A. Disney boasts some of the most popular princesses that children love to play with and emulate, including Ariel from The Little Mermaid, Belle from Beauty and the Beast, Pocahontas, and Mulan. 

However, there are other noteworthy princesses from pop culture that children may enjoy that don't fit the normal Disney princess mold. One of the most iconic princesses in the galaxy is Princess Leia from the Star Wars franchise. Wonder Woman also holds the title, known in her homeland as Princess Diana of Themyscira. What’s more, the Super Mario Bros. franchise features Princess Peach and Princess Daisy. The long-running Sailor Moon franchise revealed the titular heroine to be Princess of the Moon Kingdom. And one of the most popular films for youngsters is The Princess Bride.

Q. Are princesses good role models for children?

A. As the term “princess” has various connotations, they aren’t a uniform bunch, and many pop culture princesses display distinct personality traits and attitudes. While Disney animated fare has been incredibly popular and beloved, many fans have criticized some of the depictions and narratives involving princesses. Disney has sought to change the standard script with recent animated and live-action films that give its princess heroines more agency. Notably, the film Frozen did not end with a romance between a princess and a charming prince suitor but ended with the two young women at the center of the story triumphing due to their sisterly love and loyalty. Disney, along with other toymakers, has also sought to make Disney princesses more diverse and representative of the fans who love them.
 

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