4 factors to consider when buying a plush toy.

March 6, 2017

 

Teddy bears or stuffed toys have been the quintessential companion for children since the late 19th century. Plush teddy bears are a classic that many of us grew up with, regardless of gender. But today if one is looking to buy teddy bears online you’ll be swamped with choices. Cheap products from China have infiltrated the market, I’m not saying that China products can’t be high in quality, it is just that many manufacturers who are looking to cut corners for profit maximisation forget to put the end user’s requirements at heart.  

 

The factors we should look into are safety, durability, functionality and design. I found the Zoobies plush toy not only looks like a regular soft toy but also has multiple other functions such as a pillow and contains a warm fleecy blanket too is of great use during travel. We tested it ourselves and our kids love it. As a parent it is a great to see your kid use the total functionality of an item you bought for them, it feels like money well spent. My son's favourite "monkey teddy bear" as he calls it is Curious George. It is essential for travel now, in fact, we have two for each kid.

 

Although the Zoobies are EU - EN71 (EU) and USA - ASTM F963 (USA) child safety certified, we're going to put a zoobie through our 4 point test. Thanks to Tiny Tapir for sponsoring us with a free zoobies for test purpose.

 

Safety

- Sharp point and sharp edge verification

Almost all Zoobies don't have a sharp or pointy part, except for maybe the unicorn, however, even that is blunt and unable to cause any harm.

 

-Small parts verification

We didn't find any small parts that can get swallowed by children.

Zoobies baby comes with a teether, awesome for babies that are teething.

 

-Age appropriateness

Zoobies books - 0-4

 

Zoobies baby - 0 - 4

 

Zoobies regular - 4 upwards

 

Zoobies with baby - 4 upwards

 

 

 

Durability

- Workmanship check/pull test at seams - The seams are very close not even visible and neither are they visible from inside as most zoobies have a lining on the inside.

 

 

My brother and I, both 80kg plus males, tried pulling them at full force but were unable to tear off a leg or arm, maybe we haven't been spending enough time at the gym but nevertheless, only with two people pulling at the seams were we able to tear one zoobie leg off. Undoubtedly probably the most fun part of our test thus far. We tested a regular zoobies as that is the most common we assume.

 

- Stuff checking

The first thing that one will be impressed by when looking at the zoobies is how much like a regular stuff toy it looks, whilst keeping its multi-functionality the integrity of the shape is always in place except when the blanket is removed. Hence the only draw back is you’d need two zoobies for one child. One as a pillow and another for the blanket.  The faces of the characters are made of microbead and seems to last forever, 2 years going on strong, which we think speaks volumes for it’s quality.

 

Functionality

-This is where the Zoobies excels over a regular soft toy by leaps and bounds. Zoobies are built for function, a plush toy that has 3 uses? You ain't gonna beat that.

 

Design

The characters are cute and appealing and appeal to not only children but also adults, they'd make a clever gift for valentines instead of the regular teddy with roses.

 

All in all, in comparison to the other traditional teddy's out there, animal toys for kids like the zoobies are a great, cost-effective and functional choice for the prudent parent. Not to mention it is a really good bargain. Even better now that Tiny Tapir is having a sale this week on this item: www.tinytapir.com . By the way, the folks at Tiny Tapir told us that Zoobies are no longer in production, so I'd recommend you grab them whilst they still have stock.

 

 

Contributed by Steve Corea

 

 

 

 

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