Last updated: August 19, 2021

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This time we will talk about cuddly toys, those adorable plush toys that never go out of fashion and are still chosen by children (and not so young) as a must-have accessory.

We will tell you about all the characteristics and qualities of these cuddly toys that, despite their age, have managed to modernise and adapt their designs and formats to current themes and trends. Without a doubt, cuddly toys are more fashionable than ever.

In this article we will provide you with all the necessary content for you to make the best choice of purchase, according to your tastes, interests and budget. It is important that you pay attention to every detail, as there is a lot of information ahead that will be of great help to you. Don't miss it!




Summary

  • Soft toys are plush toys with a soft and fluffy texture, mainly used by babies and toddlers, although there are also cushions and other accessories made of this material designed for all ages.
  • There are different models, formats and styles of soft toys, adapted to the different stages of life. There are the classics and the most innovative ones, as well as those for rest, used for relaxation and home decoration.
  • There are also different soft toy materials, such as polyester, jasmine fabric, plush fabric and polar fleece, among others. The covering and filling materials of the soft toy (which can be cotton, wadding, foam rubber, etc.) affect its texture, quality and durability.

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Buying Guide: what you need to know about cuddly toys

The main purpose of this buying guide is to tell you about all the features and advantages of soft toys. We will also discuss certain aspects to take into account before you buy, so that you can choose the perfect soft toy for you according to your interests.

Despite their age, cuddly toys never go out of fashion. (Photo: Cherylholt/ Pixabay.com)

What are cuddly toys and what are their advantages?

Stuffed animals are plush, soft, cuddly toys that come in a variety of sizes, shapes and designs, although the most classic and popular are animals. These cuddly personalities are children's favourites, but there are also cushion designs for all ages.

You can also find key rings, backpacks and bags made with the same materials as the cuddly toys, as well as rattles, ideal so that the baby doesn't bump into them when moving them. The accessories made with these materials are original, fun and personal.

As you can see, soft toys have been modernised over the years, adapting their classic models to new commercial trends, as well as adding accessories and functionalities such as lights and sound. However, the classic and adorable bears never go out of fashion.

For small children, cuddly toys provide numerous benefits, not so much for what they are but for what they represent, as they are often adopted as an object of attachment for sleeping, just like a dummy or a blanket.

Among their main benefits, we could highlight that they are extremely safe toys, that they offer flexibility and durability, that they do not generate violence, that they develop empathy and intercommunication between the little ones, and that they provide them with containment, among many other advantages.

Advantages
  • They promote a state of peace
  • They are soft and fluffy to the touch
  • They provide containment and security to children
  • They produce empathy
  • They improve social skills
  • They are flexible and durable
  • They benefit emotional development
  • There is no risk of blows
Disadvantages
  • They can produce too much attachment
  • They can generate isolation in the child
  • They can produce allergies
  • They can produce suffocation in babies

Soft toys - modern, sleep or classic - what should you pay attention to?

Soft toys can be divided into three types: modern, lounge and classic. Below, we will mention the most relevant characteristics of each of them so that you can choose the most suitable one for you, depending on your tastes and needs.

Modern. We know that technology is here to stay, and that children are the ones who use it the most, as they were born with mobile devices integrated into their lives. This implied a challenge for the classic and cute cuddly toys, which had to reinvent themselves to stay in the market.

To survive in the industry, soft toys incorporated technological accessories such as sounds and lights, and adapted their models and formats to animated characters; however, they managed to maintain their original texture and softness.

For resting. These cuddly toys are used as pillows and cushions suitable for relaxation, as their soft and fluffy texture allows for a peaceful and relaxing rest, both for children and adults. They come in a variety of sizes and designs, suitable for all ages.

These cuddly toys can be incorporated into any room in the house, as they offer a variety of themes, and many models are very similar to traditional cushions. Others maintain the original look of children's cuddly toys.

Classics. The classic cuddly toys are animals, especially bears, represented in an adorable, tender and soft way. There are also dice, balls and other geometric figures, designed for babies and very young children.

Nowadays, there have been certain variations in the making of the traditional dolls; for example, in some cases the materials of the eyes, nose and mouth have been modified. However, the appearance is very similar, and they are still one of the most popular dolls.

Type Modern Relax Classics
Materials Polyester Xena fabric, Polar fabric, Plush fabric Jasmine fabric
Clothing Industrial Industrial and handicraft Handicraft
Age Children 4 years and older All ages Babies and toddlers

Allergy-proof soft toys

There are already soft toys on the market that are certified by the Asthma Foundation of America and Allergy Standard Ltds, called Asthma Friends. These soft toys have been designed with fewer creases, so that dust mites do not accumulate, and are made of hypoallergenic materials.

Their fabrics and fillings are completely natural, and they can be washed and dried without risk of spoiling. The instructions recommend freezing the soft toys once a month at a temperature of -18°C for 24 hours to eliminate any allergenic substances.

There are many different styles and designs of soft toys. (Photo: Alexas_Fotos/ Pixabay.com)

How much do cuddly toys cost?

There is a wide range of prices for cuddly toys, as they come in many shapes, sizes, materials and brands. Below, we will tell you the approximate costs of this product, taking into account the aforementioned characteristics.

The following values are for reference only, but they will give you an idea of the prices. The smallest and most basic cuddly toys start at 100 MXN, and the most expensive ones reach 4000 MXN, and even more depending on their characteristics.

Buying criteria: factors that allow you to compare and rate the different models of abacuses

In this section you will find the main buying criteria to take into account before choosing your soft toy, as we will list a series of important factors when evaluating which soft toy is right for you. This information will help you make the best purchasing decision.

Sizes

There are many different sizes of soft toys, so it's important to consider the dimensions if you don't have a lot of space in your home to store it. Also, if it is too big it will be uncomfortable to handle, especially if it is used by small children.

On the other hand, if you want a cuddly toy as a decorative element for the bedroom for example, the mobility aspect will not be a problem, as you will not need to move it from one place to another. You will have to think beforehand about the space you have available to place it.

To give you a reference, from 50 centimetres onwards, we can be sure that the cuddly toy is significantly large. Keep this measurement in mind to calculate the surface that the doll will occupy if it is very large.

Cuddly toys are loved at any age. (Photo: Pexels/ Pixabay.com)

Materials

Soft toys are usually made of soft, cushioned materials, which offer strength and durability. These include cotton, plush, polyester, fleece, angora fabric and jasmine fabric (among many other materials) of varying densities.

Polyester. Industrially manufactured plush toys are generally made of polyester, which is the same synthetic fabric used in many cases for shirts, t-shirts and trousers. One of its main advantages is that it is lightweight, dries quickly, does not wrinkle, and is resistant to moisture.

Angora fabric. It is characterised by its low pile and soft texture. This fabric, which comes from Turkey, is very similar to a fine woollen garment, and is widely used for the manufacture of soft toys and warm garments, as it is really very delicate and pleasant to the touch.

Plush fabric. Plush fabric, properly speaking, has the characteristic shaggy texture of classic or traditional plush toys. It is also used for coats, cushions and accessories, as its irregular cut gives it a rustic and handmade look, typical of these dolls.

Jasmine fabric. It is similar to sheepskin, and is used for handmade clothes, such as cushions and handmade dolls. It is a fabric of excellent quality, but not very economical; that is why dolls made with jasmine fabric tend to be a little more expensive.

Fleece. It is widely used for pillows and handmade dolls, as it is soft and at the same time gives a realistic look to the stuffed animal. It is a thick, thermally insulating fabric, which is why it is also widely used in the manufacture of warm clothing.

Xena fabric. This is one of the most commonly used fabrics for industrial cushions, as it is malleable and hairless. You probably won't recognise it by its name, but if you pay attention, you will see a lot of decorative cushions made from this material.

As for the fillings, wadding, cotton, polyester, foam rubber, wool, dielcro and PVC granules, among many others, are commonly used. The filling is clearly a key factor, as it will determine how soft and comfortable the product will be.

Toxicity

Children are constantly in contact with their soft toys, which is very pleasant and enjoyable for them. But you should consider certain aspects before buying a soft toy made of this material if your child suffers from allergies or respiratory problems.

Soft toys, even if they are new, can harbour dust mites because of the dirt they quickly accumulate, and these tiny insects are harmful to the respiratory tract. It can also happen that the fur of the doll itself can cause allergies in small (and not so small) children.

Ideally, it should have as little hair as possible; this also applies to cushions and any products made of the same materials. For children and adults with asthma, respiratory problems or allergies, it is preferable to look for a hypoallergenic alternative.

Another factor to take into account in relation to toxicity is batteries. Modern soft toys often contain batteries, so it is preferable for children aged 4 years and older to use them, as they will not put them in their mouths as small children do.

Many young children use cuddly toys as objects of attachment. (Photo: RetyiRetyi/ Pixabay.com)

Safety

You may wonder what danger a soft and cuddly cuddly toy could pose. The reality is that because of their soft, pliable texture, cuddly toys are particularly safe, and they have no hard or sharp edges that can cause cuts or bumps.

However, there is one key factor to consider when babies sleep with cuddly toys: the risk of suffocation. The time when children most need their cuddly toy is at night, before bedtime. But it is dangerous for babies up to 1 year old, without the reflexes to move and turn over, to sleep with cuddly toys.

From the age of 12 months, the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) decreases considerably, so until then it is advisable for babies to sleep in a cot that is clear of objects, especially cushioned objects in which they can sink their face and block the entry of oxygen.

On the other hand, it is also not advisable for small children to have soft toys with tiny accessories attached, as the most modern ones tend to have, as they can swallow them. You should also check that the eyes, nose, mouth and other elements attached or sewn on are well positioned and reinforced.

(Featured image photo: Pezibear/ Pixabay.com)

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