Did you know that some parents plan to spend £108 on stocking fillers this Christmas? A study conducted by Charters Savings Bank in 2019 found that parents are collectively spending £2.45 billion on stocking presents for their children.
If you want to cut down how much you're spending this year while being environmentally conscious about what you're buying, then we've found the best toddler stocking fillers for your family.
Here at Mother&Baby, we had the chance to speak to KIDLY - a modern kids' store who are currently tracking their journey to becoming a more conscious brand (find out more about this here).
KIDLY said, "We’re striving to lessen the impact that we have on the environment. Whether that’s through finding innovative, conscious brands to fill our store with, or eliminating plastics from our packaging (which we did last year).
"We’ve also taken these values and applied them to our own collection of kids' essentials, KIDLY Label, which is made from planet-friendly materials - and when there’s not a viable eco-option we opt to make things as long-lasting as possible - so they can be handed down and reused."
We love this! Don't forget to watch out for our pick from KIDLY later in this guide.
How to make sure stocking fillers are eco-friendly:
Want to do your bit this Christmas and ensure that all your toddler stocking fillers are eco-friendly? Here are some easy ways that you can make sure your stocking fillers are kinder to the planet.
1. Create your own gifts - The best way to ensure you have an eco-friendly stocking filler is by making it yourself. Think homemade treats like cookies and more.
2. Stay away from plastic toys - Except for recycled plastic toys, avoiding plastic is a must to ensure any gift is eco-friendly.
3. Ensure packaging is recyclable - Many listings or retailers will have information around whether or not their packaging is recyclable.
4. Re-gift presents - Have you thought about re-using your child's stocking fillers from last year or opting for toys that their older siblings have grown out of?
What are traditional stocking fillers?
According to our friends over at Closer, "Traditional stocking fillers are a variety of small treats which are fun or useful, and inexpensive. Things which usually went into a stocking back in olden times were cheap, easy presents which were seasonal. So there was always a satsuma at the bottom, some gold coins added a little sugar rush and a couple of little toys would usually end up in there too. Sometimes a new toothbrush was given!"
Find out more about Christmas stocking fillers - traditions and ideas here.
Where to buy stocking fillers?
Are you unsure where you can find toddler stocking fillers that are both kind to the planet and your budget? Here is a list of some of the best online retailers that offer sustainable options to include in your child's stocking filler.
Not On The High Street
Instead of scrolling for hours to find the perfect wooden toy, a game using recycled plastic or a sustainable clothing item, here are our top recommendations for the best toddler stocking fillers under £25.
Best toddler stocking fillers under £25
Shortlisted for the Mother&Baby 2021 Awards, we're expecting great things from the Classic World Crocodile Balancing Game. Not only is this a fun toy, but it'll also allow you to teach your toddler skills like turn-taking, hand-eye coordination and shape recognition.
- Colourful wooden blocks
- A friendly crocodile
One of our expert parent reviewers, Nicola, had this to say, "This product is a great family activity or an activity for just you and your little one to enjoy. The design of the product ensures your little one can have fun, whilst learning colour recognition and developing their motor skills. It is very competitively priced and well worth the cost when considering the benefits the toy has to offer."
Read Classic World Crocodile Balancing Game full review here.
Teach your child about the importance of recycling thanks to this water play toy from KIDLY. Not only will this gift's message last a lifetime, but the plastic used to create this toy would have otherwise headed straight for the ocean.
- Six green ocean bound tide pool toys
- A green toy bag
One reviewer said, "These ocean-inspired recycled plastic toys are great for teaching kids about the importance of looking after our planet."
If you're worried about your baby chewing on crayons, then look no further than these beeswax crayons. So, the beeswax used to create these fun honey sticks is a natural by-product of honey production. We're over the moon that this sustainable process causes minimal impact on the environment and gives the crayons a wonderful honey scent.
- 12 colours in the box
- Includes a money-back guarantee
One happy reviewer said, "Bought these crayons for my two-year-old grandson who has severe food allergies. Normal wax crayons contain animal derivatives, which make him sick.
"These are brilliant. He can happily use them with no adverse effect. They are just the right size for small hands, and they smell amazing. More expensive than normal wax crayons, but worth every penny."
Nothing quite says Christmas like waking up early to the sound of your little one playing on their new xylophone toy. This traditional gift is the perfect stocking filler because it's a small bundle of joy.
- Made from pine wood
- Can be personalised with up to 12 characters
- Suitable for ages three and over
One reviewer had this to say, "Fun, brightly coloured, educational and personalised for a special touch. Can't fault this product."
If you read a story to your toddler at bedtime, then we've found the best stocking filler for you. It's a little book of nursery rhymes and modern poems that puts your child at the centre stage of its pages. Not only are the stories cute, but the illustrations are too.
- Handmade to order
- Every nursery rhyme can be personalised with your child's name
- 34 fun pages to enjoy
One Amazon reviewer said, "A beautiful children's book, with their name on every page - very impressive. Lovely rhymes and stunning colours. Love the fact that you can include pets name and street name etc. A truly amazing book that will be cherished for years to come."
Remember Buckaroo? Well this stacker tower from JoJo Maman Bebe feels like a mixture of the 1989 toy (we know we couldn't belive how old it was either) and the classic Jenga game. The aim of the game is to stack the wooden animals as high as you can, before they tumble down.
- Nine adorable wood animals
- Includes drawstring storage bag
- Suitable for ages 12 months and over
One lovely review about this toy says, "Our first child loved these, I’ll be taking them out again soon for our second little one to play with." How sweet!
Are you looking for a toy that introduces problem-solving skills? This 3D shape puzzle reveals an adorable zoo animal hidden beneath each chunky piece.
- Five chunky wooden puzzle pieces
- Designed with non-toxic water-based paint
- For ages 12 months and over
A traditional pull along toy with a Peter Rabbit design is the perfect stocking filler gift this Christmas. Its charming design is dazzling for little ones over the age of 12 months.
- Handcrafted wooden toy
- Hand-painted with non-toxic paint
One reviewer said, "Lovely gift, excellent value for money. It seems very well made. As far as I know, my nephew liked it."
Does your toddler love to shout, "I see a rainbow" every time the seven colours fill the sky? If the answer is yes, bring the magic to them with this incredible rainbow wooden block toy.
- Seven wooden blocks
- Made from wood
- Designed with waterborne paint that is non-toxic and odourless
One review says, "I got this wooden rainbow for my young toddler daughter to play with as the others are so pricey. It’s lovely! Wonderfully bright colours which she enjoys naming out loud and matching to other items around our house. She also enjoys stacking it, which is a great skill for her to learn and practice."