Gifts for Tomboys That Are Way Better Than Dolls Anyway

by Stephanie Jade Wong
Nov 2, 2017 at 4:00 a.m. ET

Look, some girls love dolls and trying on Mom's lipstick. It's totally common — but it's also common for girls to take an interest in a million other things instead. For every little girl who is champing at the bit for a princess dress, there's another who is super-excited to get that new catcher's mitt. Kids are kids, and they like what they like. And (for the most part) they should be allowed to indulge in whatever they find entertaining and inspiring.

Our poor parents — and grandparents, and beyond — didn't have the luck our kids have in this department. Can you picture a little girl getting a sports-related holiday gift in the 1920s? We're not saying it didn't happen, but such joys were probably few and far between.

Thank goodness times are changing and we're finally (slowly) learning to throw gender norms out the window. And there are plenty of non-princess picks to choose from. The toys ahead are great for any little girl, boy, genderqueer kid, whatever. Because guess what: Fun knows no gender.

Originally published February 2016. Updated November 2017.

1 /31: Bad Hair Day beanie

1/31 :Bad Hair Day beanie

Whether or not you're having a bad hair day, sometimes you just want to hide under a beanie. You can let this Bad hair day beanie speak for you.

YCHY knitted beanie cap, $7.98 at Amazon

2 /31: Standing easel

2/31 :Standing easel

Buy your little "arteest" her own standing easel she can use to create her masterpieces. 

Melissa & Doug Deluxe Standing Art Easel, $60.99 at Amazon

3 /31: Thunder ball

3/31 :Thunder ball

A thunder ball is touch-sensitive and responds to the moves you make around it.

Rhode Island Novelty Plasma Ball, $39.99 at Amazon

4 /31: Singing minion

4/31 :Singing minion

Do you have a kid obsessed with Despicable Me and Minions? A singing minion toy will have her smiling and laughing while she plays.

Despicable Me Star Lite Pals Bedtime Singing Minion, $24.99 at Toys R Us

5 /31: Chalktrail

5/31 :Chalktrail

Ride around on your bike, and make fun designs with Chalktrail

Chalktrail, $19.99 at Fat Brain Toys

6 /31: Rory's Story Cubes

6/31 :Rory's Story Cubes

Got a storyteller on your hands? Roll out some of Rory's Story Cubes, and tell a fun story with the pictures you see. 

Rory's Story Cubes, $11.99 at Rory's Story Cubes

7 /31: Reptangles

7/31 :Reptangles

Create colorful geometric animals with Reptangles

Reptangles, $27.95 at Fat Brain Toys

8 /31: Krypton Glow-in-the-dark Thinking Putty

8/31 :Krypton Glow-in-the-dark Thinking Putty

Glow-in-the-dark toys are always fun. Entertain your little one with silly putty.

Crazy Aaron's Thinking Putty, $10.99 at Amazon

9 /31: Make-your-own monster puppets

9/31 :Make-your-own monster puppets

DIY projects are all the rage. Make some scary, fuzzy monsters with this make-your-own monster puppet kit

Melissa & Doug Make-Your-Own Fuzzy Monster Puppet Kit, $24.99 at Amazon

10 /31: Chocolate pen

10/31 :Chocolate pen

Calling all chocolate lovers: This yummy chocolate pen will have your little one's creative juices flowing. 

Sky Rocket Candy Craft Chocolate Pen, $30.99 at Amazon

11 /31: Nerf Zombie Strike SlingFire Blaster

11/31 :Nerf Zombie Strike SlingFire Blaster

I'll never understand our current zombie obsession, but your young fighter can knock 'em out with this foam dart blaster

Nerf Zombie Strike SlingFire Blaster, $20.99 at Amazon

12 /31: Slush Cuppy

12/31 :Slush Cuppy

Snack break! Grab a Slush Cuppy and she'll have a refreshing, sweet treat. 

Firebox Slush Cuppy, $13.09 at Firebox

13 /31: Q-Man magnets

13/31 :Q-Man magnets

Stick and stack away with Q-Man Magnets. Can you chain together some magnets that'll be as tall as your kid? 

Medium-Size Bendable Earth Magnetic-Man, set of 8, $24.99 at Amazon

14 /31: Bow & Mallow

14/31 :Bow & Mallow

Having a bonfire night? Don't forget the marshmallows! Grab this Bow & Mallow kit for your little one to help her practice her aim. 

Bow and Mallow, $24.95 at Marshmallow Fun Company 

15 /31: Pinblock Freestyle

15/31 :Pinblock Freestyle

What's so great about Pinblock Freestyle? You can stack them to build 3-D creations, and they also don't hurt if you accidentally step on them. Score.

Pinblock Freestyle Metallic 1,000-piece building block set, $39.99 at Amazon

16 /31: VTech smartwatch

16/31 :VTech smartwatch

The Apple Watch is expensive, so why not get your little one a VTech smartwatch? She'll be able to snap photos and record videos from her wrist.

VTech Kidizoom Smartwatch, $98.28 at Amazon

17 /31: SkyTrix stunt glider

17/31 :SkyTrix stunt glider

This stunt glider is like a kite — only way, way better.

Daydream Toy Birds of Prey SkyTrix Radical Glider, $9.95 at Amazon

18 /31: Skyball

18/31 :Skyball

Skyballs take bouncy balls to a whole new (higher) level. How high can you bounce one? 

Twister Skyball, $10.99 at Toys R Us

19 /31: Boon Glo night-light

19/31 :Boon Glo night-light

Night-lights are boring unless they're fun colors like the Boon Glo night-light. The glowing orbs are detachable, so your kid can take it with her throughout her room or around the house when it's dark.

Boon Glo Nightlight with portable balls, $55.11 at Amazon

20 /31: Spiketus-Rex backpack

20/31 :Spiketus-Rex backpack

Talk about being the cool kid at school. This spiky backpack will show off your child's trendy taste and colorful side at the same time.

Spiketus-Rex Pactor, $68 at MadPax

21 /31: Kidz Gear headphones

21/31 :Kidz Gear headphones

Can't really stand the tunes your child listens to these days? Get them a set of Kidz Gear headphones so they can rock out. 

Kidz Gear wired headphones, $17.99 at Amazon

22 /31: Self-balancing scooter

22/31 :Self-balancing scooter

A self-balancing scooter is a trendier skateboard. Your girl will be zipping around in style with this Swagtron hoverboard

Swagtron Self-Balancing Scooter, $299.99 at Best Buy

23 /31: Water balloon launcher

23/31 :Water balloon launcher

Who doesn't love a water balloon fight? Get your little warrior this water balloon launcher. But be sure to run away quickly before a balloon comes flying your way.

Bam Launcher 3-person water balloon launcher, $13.99 at Amazon


24 /31: Iron Man pencil-by-number kit

24/31 :Iron Man pencil-by-number kit

Channeling her inner Tony Stark, this fun Iron Man pencil-by-number kit is perfect for the little girl who wants to take over the world.

Paint Works Iron Man pencil-by-number kit, $7.60 at Amazon

25 /31: Fingerless bicycle gloves

25/31 :Fingerless bicycle gloves

Good for improving grip and looking super-cool on your next ride, these sports gloves can be used for bicycling, skating, skateboarding, climbing and more.

Freehawk kids cycling gloves, $7.99 at Amazon

26 /31: Jelly Belly BeanBoozled

26/31 :Jelly Belly BeanBoozled

If you don't like eating jelly beans that taste like dirty socks or even boogers, this might not be the game for you. But we guarantee she's gonna love it.

Jelly Belly Bean Boozled with Spinner Wheel Game, $4.99 at Amazon

27 /31: Baseball glove

27/31 :Baseball glove

Nothing beats spending a whole afternoon playing pickle with a good ol'-fashioned Rawlings baseball glove

Rawling Prodigy Infield Glove, $39.99 at Rawlings

28 /31: UNICEF Kid Power band

28/31 :UNICEF Kid Power band

This amazing little fitness tracker helps children give back. By getting active while wearing the band, kids go on missions to earn points and unlock therapeutic food packets for severely malnourished children around the world. 

UNICEF Kid Power Activity Tracker, $35.99 at Target

29 /31: Tomboy T-shirt

29/31 :Tomboy T-shirt

They'll be happy to wear their tomboy status like a badge of honor in this comfy and stylish shirt

The Tomboy Tee, $40 at Wildfang

30 /31: Volleyball best friends necklace

30/31 :Volleyball best friends necklace

These cool matching best friends necklaces fit perfectly together like a puzzle. NameCoins, the company who makes the necklaces, also produces a girls softball catcher necklace, a girl rock climber necklace and a girls soccer necklace. 

NameCoins volleyball necklace, $39.99 at Amazon

31 /31: Gift guide

31/31 :Gift guide

Need a gift guide? Pin it!