After 50 hours of research evaluating 300 products, we picked Barbie Dreamhouse as our top choice.
Christmas is exciting when you’re a kid. If you have a special little girl in your life, she’s probably kept you busy baking cookies, writing letters to Santa, and circling toys in catalogs.
Even with all the crayon-colored catalogs strewn across your kitchen table, you may still find it difficult to find the best Christmas gifts for girls.
You have to figure out whether she’s old enough to play with it and whether it’s built to last. You need reassurance that she won’t get bored with it quickly, especially if you’re spending big bucks.
Speaking of big bucks, the average parent shells out $271 per child when Christmas rolls around. We don’t know whether or not you consider yourself average (or if you’re even a parent), so we’re including gifts ranging from $10 to $200+ on our list of the best Christmas gifts for girls. We’re confident you’ll find something that’s a perfect fit for her - and your bank account.
Nontoxic, washable formula is gentle on hands - and clothes. Encourages age-appropriate STEM activities with safe materials.
Doesn’t come with everything you need to make slime. Luckily, the other ingredients (baking soda and contact lens solution) are common things you might already have at home.
Why she’s gotta have it: The slime craze is still going strong! Making homemade slime is a fun activity that she can do alone or with siblings and friends. It’s easy to make slime with this kit, so you don’t have to scour the Web for the perfect recipe.
Shopping for a kiddo on the spectrum? Slime is popular with kids who have autism or sensory processing issues, but neurotypical girls also love it. Kids often find it relaxing to squish and squeeze the slime with their hands or roll it flat across a tabletop.
Price: This slime kit costs around $15, and it comes with nearly everything your favorite girl needs to get started. For a few more bucks, you can include some baking soda and contact lens solution so she can enjoy her gift right away.
Fun, engaging poems capture the interest of readers of all ages, from elementary school girls to tweens and teens.
A handful of adults complain the poems are dark. Eh, so are most fairy tales - but that doesn’t stop parents and teachers from reading them to kids.
Why she’s gotta have it: If she’s an avid reader, Where the Sidewalk Ends deserves a permanent spot on her bookshelf. Make sure you add a personal note inside of the cover because this is the kind of book she’ll treasure for years.
Simple black-and-white sketches bring the whimsical poems to life. Your gift recipient will giggle as she reads silly poems about the sinking homemade boat and Terrible Theresa picking the middle pancake. The poems are geared toward kids age 4 to 10, but they’re fun for all ages.
Price: As of November 2017, this book is only around $13 on Amazon. However, the list price is $19.99. You get free shipping if you’re a Prime member.
This plush unicorn is nearly as big - if not bigger - than your little girl. The faux fur feels soft and smooth.
You can’t stick this giant stuffed animal in the washing machine when it gets dirty. You have to clean it by hand.
Why she’s gotta have it: Because what girl doesn’t need a stuffed unicorn that’s approximately 4 feet long and 3 feet high? She’ll have hours of fun embarking on adventures with this magical creature, whether she’s exploring the forest with fairies or saving the world while gripping this unicorn’s sparkly horn.
This unicorn is soft, shimmery, and beautiful. Expect to find it next to your little one’s bed if she can’t fit it on the mattress each night.
Price: You’ll dole out $80 to $100 for this giant unicorn, but parents report their kids still love this cuddly creature long after Christmas ends.
Forget the flimsy utensils that come with play kitchens - this is real cookware that she can actually use to prepare meals. Includes recipes for all levels of experience, so your kiddo can develop new skills or master existing ones.
A handful of reviewers complain the pieces are cheaply made, but kids don’t seem to mind.
Why she’s gotta have it: This cooking set helps her develop confidence in the kitchen, whether she dreams of leaving Gordon Ramsay speechless with her amazing recipes or simply wants to learn how to make a few basic meals. It includes common kitchen essentials, like measuring cups and a spatula, as well as recipe cards and an apron.
Parents love that these MasterChef cooking tools are dishwasher safe as long as you keep them on the top rack.
Price: This junior chef kit costs around $40, but there are cheaper kits available. Get the pizza set or the breakfast set if you’re looking for something cheaper for your mini chef. Those kits each cost approximately $25.
Durable design makes it perfect for inside or outside play. Glows in the dark so your little one feels safe.
Not big enough for older kids - it’s best for girls age 3 to 8.
Why she’s gotta have it: If she dreams of living life as a princess, this castle is just what she needs. She can hide from commoners inside the pink walls of this pop-up castle or invite a fellow princess inside for royal tea and cookies.
It’s super simple to set up this tent; in fact, some kids can even do it without a parent’s help. The outside is covered with bright hearts and glowing stars, making it clear that this is a princess-worthy dwelling.
Price: Anywhere from $20 to $40 depending on whether you buy it on sale.
Includes everything your gift recipient needs to decorate 6 sparkly headbands and 4 hair clips. Girls love showing off their glittery accessories when they’re done gluing on feathers and bows.
Lots of small pieces that pose a choking hazard for kids under 3.
Why she’s gotta have it: You want her to keep her hair out of her face during school or activities, and she wants to rock hair accessories that showcase her personal style. It’s a win-win situation for everyone.
Rhinestones, ribbons, feathers, and bows make it fun and easy to bedazzle headbands and hair clips. The kit includes glue and double-sided adhesive, so you don’t have to worry about buying extra supplies.
Price: For around $20, your creative crafter gets 10 custom-made hair accessories for her wardrobe. That’s more than a week’s worth of accessories!
Perfect as a single gift or as individual stocking stuffers. Much cheaper than buying canisters of Play-Doh separately.
The set contains some duplicate colors, but it’s nice to have extra Play-Doh on hand for friends or siblings to share.
Why she’s gotta have it: What kid doesn’t love Play-Doh? She’ll unleash her creative side as she rolls this soft dough into different shapes, combining different colors for one-of-a-kind designs. It’s generally nontoxic (not that we recommend letting her eat it), but if you’re shopping for a kiddo with allergies, keep it mind that Play-Doh contains wheat.
Maximize her fun by including some plastic tools, cookie cutters, or an activity set like the Play-Doh Kitchen Creations Frost ‘n Fun Cakes.
Price: You get 36 colors for $25. That’s less than $1 a canister!
Authentic UGG boots with an official logo (parents love this because there are lots of knockoffs on the Web). Super-soft interior keeps feet warm and cozy on chilly days.
These boots come with a hefty price tag, but can you really put a price on a little girl’s happiness?
Why she’s gotta have it: Her BFFs probably own the same pair (and if not, there’s a good chance they’ll find these boots under the Christmas tree). These boots pair well with everything from leggings to skinny jeans, and we’ve also seen them with boots and dresses.
Fashion talk aside, these UGGs are a solid investment. They’re made from soft yet resilient sheepskin, so they last a long time - well, unless your fashionista’s feet grow quickly.
Price: We’re not going to sugarcoat it: UGG boots are expensive. However, numerous reviewers say they’re worth every penny. Expect to spend anywhere from $100 to $160 for these trendy boots.
Includes a gig bag for easy transport to band practice and concerts - or from her bedroom to the basement. Reusable decals make it simple to create an instrument that’s truly hers.
A couple reviewers complain about shipping-related issues, but there are no major complaints about this glittery guitar.
Why she’s gotta have it: Taylor Swift loves Daisy Rock guitars and has helped the company design some of the instruments she’s owned. This model is very similar to the glittery guitars she’s been photographed with over the years.
Even if your junior guitarist isn’t a Swift fan, she’ll have a blast strumming along with her favorite rock or country songs. This guitar really works - and it works well, according to reviewers.
Price: You might want to put this gift on your credit card. The guitar costs around $200, and you’ll spend more than that if you include a cute strap or a kid-approved guitar pick.
Contains more than 20 secret agent accessories. The fingerprint powder doubles as a shimmery body powder.
Numerous reviewers gripe that it’s tricky to open and close the case.
Why she’s gotta have it: Whether she loves eavesdropping on older siblings or spying on your next-door neighbors, this kit will keep her entertained for hours. She can check for clues with a hidden flashlight while pretending to paint her nails or send secret messages with a tube of lipstick.
This secret agent kit also contains enough supplies for several science experiments.
Price: The kit costs $40, which some parents feel is too much. If you don’t want to fork over two Andrew Jacksons, you can purchase pieces from the spy kit separately.
Encourages development of fine motor skills through play. Cosmetics look real, and the brushes really work.
Some reviewers are upset that the makeup isn’t real, but it’s advertised as pretend makeup. Personally, we love that it’s fake because real makeup makes a real mess.
Why she’s gotta have it: She wants to look her best and be just like Mom (or another adult she adores). This pretend makeup kit lets her feel like a grown up, minus the mess. It includes fake nail polish, eye shadow, lipstick, and powder.
The brushes are soft and feel just like Mom’s makeup brushes. The carrying case doubles as a cute purse, so she’ll always arrive in style for job interviews, hair appointments, and trips to the mall.
Price: For $30, you can give your mini me a mess-free makeup experience with this pretend cosmetic kit.
Ziza Glitterton (one of the pets in this set) has a code that lets kids unlock special features on an electronic device. Pets are easy to dress with the included accessories.
Small pieces are a potential choking hazard and can get lost easily.
Why she’s gotta have it: Girls who adore fluffy kitties and cuddly puppies can pretend they’re pet owners - or fellow four-legged friends - with this cute set. She can create her own Littlest Pet Shop world with 15 lovable pets and plenty of adorable accessories.
One special glittery kitty has an access code for electronic play. If you limit your little one’s time on the tablet or smartphone, no worries - the kitty is still fun without an electronic device.
Price: This set is a steal at just $15.
Arrives fully assembled and doesn’t require batteries. Can hold up to 180 lbs, so you don’t have to replace it as your kid grows.
Some parents complain it’s hard to roll the wheels. However, this is a benefit rather than a con if you don’t want your child flying down the street too quickly.
Why she’s gotta have it: She’s too cool for her scooter, but she still needs a way to get around the neighborhood. She can soar down the sidewalk on this vibrant pink skateboard day or night. The bright LED lights make it easy for drivers or pedestrians to see her coming.
This skateboard is sturdy and resilient, making it suitable for kids, tweens, and even teens who weigh 180 lbs or less.
Price: It’s currently on sale for $38, but expect to pay up to $65 for this pink skateboard. Still cheaper than a bike, right?
The vibrant colors and cute patterns delight young girls. Includes 3 small toys for kiddos to decorate.
Some parents complain the product is cheaply made, but kids love it anyway.
Why she’s gotta have it: Before you make a Goodwill run or call a local children’s charity for pickup, give the Graphic Skinz Design Studio Girl a chance. Your daughter can revamp forgotten trinkets from the bottom of the toy box using the colorful Skinz from this set. They’re easy to apply, and they don’t leave behind a mess like some craft kits do.
Price: It’s only $15 to $20 for a Graphic Skinz Design Studio Girl. That’s about how much you’d spend for a Barbie Doll or other popular girls’ toys.
Helps your favorite 4-year old girl improve her fine motor skills while mastering the ABCs. Pictures are colorful and easy for young kids to identify.
Parents lament that this puzzle set would be perfect if it came with a lid. You may want to store this in a closet or cabinet.
Why she’s gotta have it: At this age, she probably has an interest in letters (or maybe you’re hoping she develops one before kindergarten). The double-sided spelling boards save space, plus she won’t end up scattering as many pieces throughout the house. We love that each board contains familiar words rather than weird stuff kids won’t recognize.
Price: $15 is an excellent price for high-quality puzzles from Melissa and Doug. The pieces are made from wood, not cardboard, so they should last a while.
Includes kid-safe medical tools that inspire creative play. Washable uniform comes with a reusable name tag to prevent fights between siblings or friends.
A handful of parents complain that the baby doll is cheap, but we personally think it’s cute - and so do young girls.
Why she’s gotta have it: We don’t want to bombard you with Melissa and Doug toys on this gift list for girls, but let’s be honest here - they create some awesome stuff. This pediatric nurse costume is an excellent gift for a 5 year old girl because it encourages imaginary play, which is important at this age. The realistic accessories help your favorite mini nurse feel like she’s part of an official hospital team, and the baby doll gives her a patient to practice on (so she leaves unenthused pets and family members alone).
Looking for a different costume for creative play? This article has some great options - don’t let the Halloween title deter you.
Price: Expect to spend $20 to $30 for this adorable pediatric nurse costume.
Well-made doll looks just like Disney’s island adventuress, Moana. Includes accessories that match her beautiful outfit.
A few parents complain that Moana’s hair gets frizzy after a while.
Why she’s gotta have it: Little girls were obsessed with Trolls last Christmas, but many of them have moved on to Moana. This lovable doll lets your little Disney fan act out scenes from the popular movie with the star herself.
A pretty floral bracelet and hair clip accent Moana’s outfit. The hair clip is removable, so your favorite girl can rock her own Moana-style attire.
Price: This Moana doll is around $20, which is a reasonable price for a gift your girl will adore.
Rainbow gravel and fairy dust create a magical experience. Depending on climate, it can be used inside or outside.
The plastic is thin, so the gift recipient needs to be careful if she transports the terrarium to a different location.
Why she’s gotta have it: Delight a special girl’s imagination with this magical terrarium filled with delicate fairies and lush foliage. The seeds sprout quickly, so she won’t lose interest before they grow. A fun instruction guide explains the role each plant plays. Your fairy fan will get a kick out of hearing about how clover attracts fairies and thyme protects humans from fairy-induced mischief.
Price: This fairy dome typically costs $25 to $30, which is a fair price for what you get.
Cultivates fine motor skills and helps young girls develop an interest in sewing. Includes everything you need to make several cute animals out of felt and thread.
Several folks complain the scissors are awful, but we aren’t surprised. They’re child-friendly scissors, so they’re not going to be as sharp as adult scissors.
Why she’s gotta have it: Now that she’s 8, she probably has the attention span required to complete quick, easy crafts. Sewing is an important skill that will benefit her later in life, and this cute kit makes it fun. We’re excited about the kit’s convenient handle and lid because it means a junior crafter can take her supplies on road trips or rides to Grandma’s house.
Price: Craft supplies generally aren’t cheap, so we’re okay with the suggested $35 price tag. Plus, Amazon usually carries the kit for about half that price.
A combination of printed and color-in sheets encourage creativity. Contains a booklet of decoration ideas for inspiration.
We couldn’t find any major complaints except from parents of younger kiddos (6 to 8-years old) who said their daughters weren’t interested in the cootie catcher yet.
Why she’s gotta have it: Before smartphones and tablets hit elementary schools, we determined our fates with cootie catchers. They’re popular again, and Mom and Grandma will have a blast reliving the past as they unveil fun messages with the gift recipient. You may want to include a pack of colored pencils so your 9-year old girl doesn’t have to use markers that bleed through the paper or waxy crayons.
Price: You can’t go wrong with a $10 gift. This is one of the most budget-friendly gifts on our list of presents for girls.
Includes enough supplies for 22 bracelets so your 10-year old doesn’t have to choose between 1 or 2 favorite friends. Colorful thread can be spun in different shapes or styles.
Some folks report that the instructions are confusing.
Why she’s gotta have it: As a 10-year old, she probably spends a lot of time with her peers. This bracelet kit lets her showcase her loyalty to multiple friends in a fun, fashionable way. It includes a trendy carrying case, so she can easily bring the kit to slumber parties or after-school gatherings.
Price: Prices vary from $15 to $20 for this friendship bracelet kit. We’re okay with that.
Features more than 200 activities geared toward tween girls. Encourages girls to interact with each other and learn more about their friends.
A small number of parents think the game should cost less than it does.
Why she’s gotta have it: Like 10-year olds, 11-year old girls enjoy activities they can do with a group of friends. This fun party game distracts preteens from their smartphones and iPads, encouraging them to actually get to know each other.
Price: At around $25, this is an affordable gift. Yeah, other kids’ games are cheaper...but do they make a group of girls giggle for hours?
More than 400 gems and charms let your favorite tween express her unique style. Includes a charm glaze that holds pieces in place.
We seriously can't think of any, and other parents we've talked to agree that the kit is great.
Why she’s gotta have it: Tween girls are uber aware of their appearance. This nail kit lets a 12-year old girl experiment with different looks without using makeup, which is great if you’re shopping for a girl whose parents aren’t fans of their daughter wearing cosmetics.
Price: This kit costs $10 to $20, which is way cheaper than a trip to the nail salon.
USB cord eliminates the need for batteries. Six multicolored LED lights enhance your tween’s listening experience, especially when her music has bass.
Multiple users are annoyed that this device requires a mini USB connection rather than a micro connection.
Why she’s gotta have it: Tech-savvy tweens are constantly streaming music, videos, or verbal chat sessions on their digital devices. These water speakers illuminate your favorite tween's bedroom with vibrant colors as she talks to friends or listens to music. Their sleek, modern design appeals to preteens, but younger kids like them too. Installation is a breeze, and there are no batteries to deal with.
Price: Price varies from $30 to $70 for these water speakers. Would we pay $70 for these? Eh, probably not. Would we pay $30 to $50? Yes, definitely.
Nontoxic dye transforms basic shirts into colorful creations. Also includes enough supplies for 6 people, so she can share with friends or family members.
Only includes one size of rubber bands.
Why she’s gotta have it: She probably doesn’t want to admit that she hates the white tee, sheet, or pillow case that you got her. This kit gives her the freedom to customize clothing and bedding to suit her style. There are 18 different colors, and she can use them alone or mix them to create one-of-a-kind hues.
Price: You’ll shell out $25 to $30 for this kit. Several moms and dads say this tie-dye kit is a great value.
The camera automatically selects the best exposure setting, so even young girls can easily take non-blurry photos. Slim, lightweight camera fits easily in small hands.
Film isn’t cheap, and you can't upload pics as digital files.
Why she’s gotta have it: Young girls enjoy photographing pets, toys, and family members. Tweens like posing for pics with groups of friends - or the boys they’ve been crushing on. The light pink exterior and compact design make this camera an excellent choice for young photographers, and kids who lack patience love how the photos pop out instantly.
Price: For less than $60, a girl can capture magical moments and print colorful photos. Sounds like a good deal to us.
Lasts up to 10 hours at speeds as high as 2 mph. Realistic horn and engine sounds enhance every ride.
Only holds one child at a time, so buy several if you don't want to listen to arguments between siblings.
Why she’s gotta have it: We can ramble on about this car’s impressive features, but we think it’s pretty obvious why most girls love this electric vehicle. It’s pink, it moves quickly, and it sounds just like a real car. She can cruise around the block in style, and the built-in seatbelt keeps her safe when she hits a speed bump (or your neighbor’s mailbox).
Price: For less than $200, your favorite female can be the proud owner of this awesome vehicle. Too bad you can’t buy a car this cheap when she turns 16.
Encourages imaginary play as Barbie makes her way through the home. Fun accessories keep kiddos engaged.
It's approximately 4 feet tall and takes up a bunch of space.
Why she’s gotta have it: The first Barbie was invented in 1959, and little girls (heck, some little boys too) love embarking on adventures with this popular doll. Barbie has more clothes, friends, and careers than any girl we’ve ever met, but after a hectic day of work and play, she needs her own home.
The Barbie Dreamhouse comes with more than 70 accessories to help Barbie feel comfortable in her 3-story, 7-room home. Your princess can watch fish swim in the aquarium or flip on the lights so Barbie can socialize with her BFFs. This sturdy Dreamhouse provides hours of fun for young Barbie fans.
Price: You’ll pay $150 to $200 for this Barbie Dreamhouse, making it one of the most expensive presents on our list. It’s worth every penny, though.