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November 2012 | Vol. XI - No. 11
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Top-10 Most-Wanted Tween Products


With additional reporting from Chris Lundy and Brenda Ruggiero

When TDmonthly interviewed retailers in a Fall 2012 survey about best selling tween products, their answers varied widely.

From jewelry and fashion to robots and electronics, the Top-10 Most-Wanted Tween Products below offer a little something for everyone.

No manufacturer paid to be included in this article. All products listed were designated by editorial staff without regard to the company's relationship with TOYDIRECTORY.com/TDmonthly Magazine.




MSRP: $27.00
Age Range: 8 and up
Gender: Girls
Category: Kits
Fashion & Accessories



This kit contains materials for making up to 22 friendship bracelets. It includes four looms for two styles and eight patterns, along with 22 colors of floss, beads, a beading needle and a convenient storage case.
— As of 05/12/2012 this product has 3.9 out of 5 stars from 54 reviews on Amazon.com. Cons: Instructions are not helpful enough; not enough designs included.
— Kim Myers, co-owner of Hobbytown USA in Murfreesboro, Tenn., told TDmonthly in late Spring 2011 that ALEX arts and crafts were best-sellers in their category, especially among older girls.
― As of 9.21.2010, this product had 4 out of 5 stars from 24 reviews on Amazon.com and was No. 33 on the top 100 best-selling toys and games. 
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 30599      (added 9/21/2010)
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MSRP: $5.99
Age Range: 8 and up
SKU or Item #: 11477
Launch Date: August 2009
Gender: Girls
Category: Creative Activities
Arts & Crafts
Tween



Girls can create a portfolio book of fabulous fashion creations with a little glitz and glamour flair, using the 50+ stencils and create red-carpet-worthy designs. Launch date: August 2009.
— Kim Emigh, VP of E-commerce at Growing Tree Toys in State College, Pa., told TDmonthly in a Fall 2012 survey that Fashion Angels Fashion Design Sketch Portfolios were one of their best selling tween products.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 25994      (added 11/5/2009)
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MSRP: $7.99
Age Range: 6 and up
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Electronics
Robotics
Interactive



Kids can operate their HEXBUG Warriors in Training Mode, with unlimited health, for scrimmages and testing purposes. Once the Warriors are equipped and ready for battle, they can be powered into Match Mode and are set to enter into competition, where they crash, jab and jostle with their opponents until they win or lose by running out of health at which point they deactivate. Once put in Match Mode, each robot’s Shock Sensor activates its Damage Indicator Light which changes colors from green to red and blinks more rapidly as its health decreases. There are 12 assorted HEXBUG Warrior Battling Robots Single packs available for fans to collect. Each Single pack includes 1 fully-armored Warrior.
— Mary Porter Green, owner of Curiosity Zone in Ashbburn, Va., told TDmonthly in a Fall 2012 survey that Hexbugs are one of their bestselling tween toys. "In a good month, we sell dozens," she told us.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 34807      (added 8/8/2012)
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MSRP: $39.95
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Electronics
Travel
Interactive



The original Boogie Board LCD eWriter that started a revolution. Ultra light (4oz.) and thin (1/8"). One just isn’t enough. Get one for on the go, in the office and multiple places around the house. Almost anywhere you’d keep memo pads, sticky notes or scrap paper.
— Erika Evers, owner of Dancing Bear Toys in Hendersonville, N.C., told TDmonthly in an April 2012 survey that their best selling travel toy is the Boogie Board. They sell 6-7 each month.
— Chris Lowe, owner of Beanhead Toys in Sandy Springs, Ga., told TDmonthly in a late Summer 2012 survey that they sell 15 of this item each month, making it a bestselling novelty item.
— Greg Larson, owner of Larson's Toys and Games in Columbus, Ohio, told TDmonthly in a March 2013 survey that they sell 18 Boogie Boards each month, and up to 48 a month during 4th quarter.

Where to buy:
NORTH WEST

ToyDirectory Product ID#: 34059      (added 4/6/2012)
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MSRP: $14.75
Gender: Girls
Category: Fashion & Accessories
Collectibles
Tween



MOGO charmbands let girls link together different magnetic charms for nearly endless possibilities. Each band is made of durable nylon and contains eight silvertone charm holders.
— In September 2010, three of 44 specialty retailers cited MOGO products as a best-selling jewelry and accessory item. The same month, Jenny Bramhall, owner of Dandelion Toys in Fort Collins, Colo., told TDmonthly, “people are really attracted to them - buying them, and then coming back and buying them as gifts.”
— Elmer Carranza. assistant manager of Doodlehopper 4 Kids in Falls Church, Va., told TDmonthly in an October 2011 survey that they sell "a good dozen or two" MOGO bracelets each month.
— Joe Berardoni, owner of Pun's Toys in Bryn Mawr, Pa., told TDmonthly in an October 2011 survey that MOGO Bracelets are one of their best selling tween items.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 30730      (added 10/6/2010)
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MSRP: $14.95
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Gifts
Stationery
School Supplies



Set of 10 Gourmet Scented Pencils in reusable zippered pouch. Smencils are made from 100% recycled newspaper soaked in natural gourmet liquid fragrance. Scents include: Bubble Gum, Orange, Cinnamon, Grape, Root Beer, Watermelon, Black Cherry, Very Berry, Tropical Blast, and Cotton Candy. Each individual Smencil is packaged in its own freshness tube made from biodegradable, corn-based plastic. Smencils will retain their scent for up to 2 years and each time you sharpen your Smencil the scent is refreshed.
— "We sell about 50 per month. We're expecting this to be a big stocking stuffer,'' Christine Osborne, co-owner of Wonder Works in Charleston, S.C., told TDmonthly.
— William Meredith, owner of Learning Express in Cary, N.C., told TDmonthly in a Fall 2012 survey that they sell 100 Smencils a month, making them one of the store's best selling tween products.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 26570      (added 1/5/2010)
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MSRP: $13.50
Age Range: 3 and up
Specialty: Yes (as of 2012)
Made in: United States
SKU or Item #: SL020, SO020, SC020
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Novelties
Arts & Crafts
Creative Activities



Thinking Putty is high quality silicone bouncing putty enhanced with knock-your-socks-off colors. It is all Made in the USA, non-toxic, and never dries out. The three new Super Illusions are unbelievably vibrant colors that shift depending on how the light hits them. The dynamic colors shine like no others: when held up to the light and pulled thin, the colors magically disappear and kids can see right through them. Launch date: June 2012.
— Mary Sisson, owner of Kazoodles in Vancouver, Wash., told TDmonthly in a Fall 2012 survey that Thinking Putty is one of her best sellers in the tween category.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 34635      (added 7/19/2012)
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MSRP: $19.99
Age Range: 9 and up
Gender: Girls
Category: Designer Toys
Creative Activities
Tween



LockerLookz Wallpaper for lockers comes in eight fun patterns. The wallpaper is held up by 20 super-strong magnets, making sure no damage is done to the locker itself. The LockerLookz line of Wallpaper and accessories allows kids to personalize their space at school.
— Betsy Ordemann, owner of Magic Box LTD in New Orleans, La., told TDmonthly that she sells dozens of each piece of the LockerLookz line each month, and up to 3 dozen of the most popular pieces. “It's unbelievably popular. It's totally different than anything else in the market,” she said.
— Christine Osborne, co-owner of Wonder Works in Charleston, S.C., told TDmonthly in an October 2011 survey that LockerLookz was their best selling tween item. "We don't know how many" are sold, she said, "because it sells out too quickly!"
— William Meredith, owner of Learning Express in Cary, N.C., told TDmonthly in a Fall 2012 survey that they sell 100 LockerLookz products each month, making them a best seller in the tween category.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 31742      (added 2/22/2011)
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MSRP: $20.00
Age Range: All Ages
Specialty: Yes (as of 2011)
Made in: China
SKU or Item #: 61000
Gender: Boys And Girls
Category: Plush
Collectibles
General Toys



These large plush Uglydolls have a mini Uglydoll in their pouch. Launch date: May 2012.
— Shana Hack, owner of Moon Rabbit Toys in Santa Fe, N.M., told TDmonthly in a Summer 2012 survey that they sell a couple dozen Ugly Dolls each month, though sales have slowed slightly.
— Bill Sartain, owner of Tutoring Toy in Salt Lake City, Utah, told TDmonthly in a Fall 2012 survey that Ugly Dolls are one of their best selling tween products.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 33379      (added 12/29/2011)
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MSRP: $5.99
Gender: Girls
Category: Fashion & Accessories
Gifts



These bracelets are made with genuine 550 pound test paracord, similar to what paratroopers use in their military operations.  These are tightly woven into a bracelet, which can be unwoven in emergency situations.
— John Taylor, owner of O.P Taylor in Brevard, N.C., told TDmonthly in a Fall 2012 survey that paracord jewelry was one of their best selling tween products.
— Mary Porter Green, owner of Curiosity Zone in Ashburn, Va., told TDmonthly in a Fall 2013 survey that paracord survival bracelets are a best-selling jewelry item.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 33262      (added 12/5/2011)
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Justina HuddlestonWriter's Bio: Justina Huddleston graduated Magna Cum Laude from Emerson College with a BA in Writing, Literature, and Publishing in 2009. After graduating she was the on-site director of the Boston Children's Museum gift store for a year, selling educational, developmental, and creative activity toys that tied in with the museum's exhibits. Justina also interned at children's book publisher Candlewick Press before moving from Boston to Los Angeles, where she is now Editorial Director of TDmonthly Magazine. Read more articles by this author

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