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As we learn more about the world and the environment, it's only natural to want to make the best eco-friendly choices that we can - and that includes with our children.
Most of the toys that fill the shelves are heavily packaged, contain lots of plastic, are battery-powered, and contain other harmful materials, but a great way to help and do your bit is by introducing toys with as little environmental impact as possible. If you've decided that's the way you want to go, you may be struggling with where to start - there aren't exactly many eco-friendly toy shops around.
Another thing you may notice is that eco-friendly toys also seem to be a little bit more pricey than regular ones, but we believe that you get what you pay for and the benefits of environmentally-friendly, ethical, and sustainable toys well out-weigh their costs.
With that in mind, we've researched and rounded up 13 of the best eco-friendly kids toys that you can purchase online for different ages and interests, all made with either the environment in mind in terms of materials and how they're made, are sustainable, or encourage little ones to consider the environment themselves - check them out!
Our Top Choice
Green Toys Recycling Truck
This Green Toys recycling truck has so many great aspects to it that both you and your child are sure to love. Not only is the large and sturdy truck made from 100% recycled milk cartons and free from BPA, PVC, and Phthalates - but it's also a great toy to teach your little ones about recycling whilst they're still young. The unique truck can be opened, closed, and filled up with items at the rear, pushed around on the floor, and is a great way to experience imaginative play. A fabulous environmentally-friendly and educational addition to a toy collection for both boys and girls!
- Price: £24.39
- Size: 38 x 16 x 18 cm
- 12 months +
Best Doll Accessory
Plan Toys Baby Feeding Set
This baby feeding set may be a new toy, but it's already a bestseller - and for good reason. Ideal for playing with dolls, the set includes a bag, two bottles, a bib, a spoon, and a pot with a lid for feeding. The wooden playset is one of the many eco-friendly products that Play Toys produces, and all materials used are either non-toxic, wooden, and/or using water-based colours that are completely chemical-free. The set is great for imaginative play, and is also sustainable in that it can be used and passed down for years!
- Price: £29.89
- 6 items included
- 2 years +
Best Educational Toy
Petit Collage Multi-Language Alphabet Wooden Tray
This multi-language alphabet tray includes 26 removable letters that can be lifted and placed back onto the wooden tray. Fun and educational, the toy also includes language sheets for English, French, Italian, and Spanish to help with learning. It's great for developing motor skills, letter and shape recognition, hand-eye coordination skills, and will also help children with their ABCs. The tray itself is made with FSC-certified wood and non-toxic water-based paints and varnish for the adorable illustrations - a sturdy toy that can be passed down for years to come!
- Price: £20
- 3 years +
Best For Younger Children
Grimm's Pastel Semi Circles
These eleven gorgeous and colourful wooden semi-circles come in a range of varied sizes for endless play. Children can enjoy stacking them, balancing them, using them for building, making a rainbow - the possibilities are endless. The natural toy set is made with birch plywood from sustainably managed forests in Europe, and is painted with a non-toxic, water-based stain. It's also great for your little one's hand-eye coordination, balance, and fine motor skills.
- Price: £55.99
- L38cm (largest piece)
- 1 year +
Best For Animal Lovers
Petit Collage Jumping Jumbo Elephant Wood Pull Toy
Made with FSC-certified wood and decorated with non-toxic paints, this colourful elephant wooden toy is a great addition to a toy collection. It comes with a natural cotton string and is on wheels so that it can be pulled along for a walk. You'll also be able to enjoy watching it bob up and down as it moves. Safe and sturdy, kids can take it everywhere with them - and it's especially great for younger children!
- Price: £18.51
- 18 months +
Best For Family Fun
BigJigToys Wooden Crazy Golf
This wooden crazy golf set is so much fun and a great way to ignite their love of the sport. The toy comes with two wooden clubs, a selection of courses to set up, and various obstacles - all in bright colours. Not only is it a fun form of active play that will occupy little ones for hours, but it'll also improve their skills and the whole family can get involved with the score sheets included. Made with high-quality responsibly sourced materials, this toy is one that you can't go wrong with and is sure to become a firm favourite.
- Price: £39.99
- 3 years +
Best For Building
Little Dutch Blue Stacking Blocks - Trouva
These new blue-themed stackable blocks enable children to get creative whilst building their own little village. The blocks come in all different shapes and sizes with individual cute prints, and stack in different ways that allow kids to get imaginative whilst playing. The best toys are those that can be used over and over again - and this one appeals to those from a year old and over and so is sure to get plenty of use over the years. The wooden blocks are made with environmentally-friendly paint with zero toxic substances, and so are both safe and harmless to the planet, and can be passed down for years so are also sustainable.
- Price: £19.45
- 16 pieces included
- 1 year +
Classic World Crocodile Balancing Game
This crocodile balancing game is exciting for the whole family to play, with the aim being to balance as many of the multicoloured pieces on top of him as you can. It's a great way to learn strategy and improve skills, along with helping hand-eye coordination, shape recognition, and fine motor skills. The game also includes a dice that will tell you which colour piece to place on the crocodile next when you roll it. The game pieces are made with natural, eco-friendly wood and non-toxic paint - all made with an environmentally safe process of production and using sustainable methods. Kids of all ages will love this game!
- Price: £9.95
- 3 years +
Best For Sounds
Djeco Baby Raini Shaker - Jojo Maman Bebe
Not only does this rain stick look mesmerising, but it's so much fun for children to shake and makes lots of nice sounds. Whether it's shaken, rolled on the floor, flipped upside down to listen to the soothing rain sounds, or you simply want to peer inside to look at the multicoloured beads, this toy is sure to have your little one's attention for a good while. Made with sustainable wood that will last for years to come, it also makes for a great first instrument and is sturdy enough for younger children to handle without any breakage.
- Price: £12.90
- 1 year +
Best For Bathtime
Wooden Submarine PlanToys
PlanToys makes fantastic eco-toys, and this one is no exception. A great toy for bathtime, this small yellow submarine comes with a blue removable scuba diving character that is plenty of fun to splash around with and enjoy imaginative play. Made with sustainable PlanWood through responsible production that is safe for both the children and the planet, the toy also comes in recycled packaging and uses water-based colours that are non-harmful. Watch your child's face light up as they zoom their new submarine around the tub!
- Price: £14.39
- 1 year +
Best For Pretend Play
Little Dutch Toy Cash Register With Scanner
This cash register wooden toy set is painted in a variety of water-based pastel colours that make it both a joy to look at and to play with. The adorable set is perfect for a pretend shop or restaurant and includes a machine with pushable buttons, a cash drawer, a scanner, a credit card, and plenty of toy coins and notes. Ideal for when they want to use their imagination, this toy can be played with over and over again - and the child-friendly materials used make this one a great addition to the collection. It's also far less harmful and much more sustainable than a plastic alternative. Hours of fun are sure to be had with these cute wooden toys!
- Price: £17.99
- 4 main items + extras
- 3 years +
Best For Artistic Children
Natural Watercolour Paintbox - ÖkoNORM
If you've got an artistic child in the family, this is the one for them. The watercolour paintbox consists of 12 plant-based colours that are made from plant extracts and food colouring, all materials being non-toxic. While the colours initially look rather pale, they become much more vibrant when used with water and are a great way for kids to get creative and design their own masterpieces. All packaged up in a reusable tin - the paint set will get plenty of use from your little artists, whilst being safe for the environment.
- Price: £16.95
- 12 colours
- 3 years +
Best For Cuddles
Violet The Fawn - CuddleAndKind
The silver winner of the MadeForMums toy awards in 2019 for the best sustainable, eco-friendly, and ethical toy - this adorable Violet the fawn toy is one that is sure to be well-loved. Handmade in Peru from premium organic cotton and with sustainable and fair-trade practices in place - you'll be able to pick from two different sizes of the cute handcrafted soft dolls, dressed in pink tutus. Each toy is safety certified and comes with a description of Violet and her personality, and is ideal for cuddling and play. She's the perfect size to take along everywhere. An added bonus? With every purchase, you'll be giving 10 meals to children in need. It doesn't get better than that!
Kidadl Best Buys selects the top parent-recommended products across the web for families of all ages. If you liked our suggestions for environmentally-friendly and ethical toys, why not take a look at our 15 best toys for 3-year-olds, or for something a little different - our best kids bike helmets?
- Price: £54
- 13 or 20 inches
- 0 years +
Rachel grew up in Switzerland and currently lives in north-west London. She is an avid reader, writer, and a real foodie and loves discovering new hotspots and trendy places to go in the city. She also enjoys planning days out for her family, she especially loves taking her little cousins swimming and to the park. When she has some free time she loves going to concerts, baking, or visiting her family at their home in Essex. She can sometimes be found travelling a bit further than Essex and loves meticulously planning and researching a trip before heading off to explore new places in Europe and further afield.