We earn a commission through some of the links and banners on this article.


Top toys for Christmas in the 1990s will surprise you

What were the top toys for Christmas in the 1990s? Here we reveal the sought-after presents, children asked for in the nineties and yes Furby and PS1 are both in there.

Top toys for Christmas in the 1990s
Top toys for Christmas in the 1990s

Every Christmas there’s always a huge demand for particular toys, games and tech children want Santa to deliver to them on Christmas morning.

Last year’s top toys from UK retailers included My Pet Pig Piggly, Batman Giant Transforming Playset, LEGO and of course the popular Nintendo Switch Lite.

My Pet Pig Piggly

But, unlike these days where brands announce “official” top toy lists, kids of the nineties will know back then it was all about spending hours circling the coolest toys in the Argos catalogue, perusing the aisles of Toys ‘R Us all before starting your Christmas wish list to Santa.

However, can you really remember what you nagged your Mum and Dad for back in the 90s? and can you honestly say you know which game was most popular for that decade? neither could we! that’s why we dug deeper than Santa’s sleigh to bring you (and to remind ourselves) what the hottest toys were for Christmas in the 1990s.

Wish List for Santa

Let’s begin way back to 1990 when Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles and the Mr Frosty Machine were some of the most sought after gifts children wanted to find under their Christmas Tree. Back then the Mr Frosty machine cost around £10 – £11 however nowadays you could spend around £20 to pick up this classic.

TMNT 1990 Slash action figure / Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles - PizzaPlastic
TMNT 1990 Slash action figure / Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – PizzaPlastic from Etsy

Jumping another year to 1991 and you probably already knew it would be in here but the Nintendo Game Boy was the ultimate piece of tech every school kid wanted to get their hands on and at £64.99 this was also one of the more pricer gadgets to have. Now in 2022, you are looking at over £240 for a Nintendo Switch plus around £40 just for a game.

Nintendo Switch OLED
Nintendo Switch OLED

1992 was a massive year for Thunderbirds’ Tracy Island, it even made the BBC News as shortages of the most coveted toy ran out! Looking for the equivalent? well, you can buy the Thunderbirds Interactive Tracy Island Playset for £79.99 but most UK retailers don’t have any stock left.

Barbie Doll and Play-Doh all landed on the scene in 1993, however, it was the ultra-cool Talkboy that grabbed the top spot, why? easy! Does anyone remember a little movie called Home Alone 2? of course, well Kevin McCalister famously used this to record his uncle Frank.

Go Go Power Rangers were 1994’s big sellers, their £4.99 figures were in most children’s stockings.

Vintage Saban Kenner 1994 Ultimate Ryan Steel Power Rangers 1994 - Christmas 1994

If you could get your hands on one of these bad boys then you were lucky, yes it’s the most popular gadget of 1995 – the Playstation and now wonder, it had revolutionary (for the time!) graphics and you could play high-tech games such as Tekken and Rayman on the console. How much did it cost? around £287 which in today’s world would be around a staggering £540 – and that’s not even the dearest Playstation consoles out.

Fun-loving TV & Movie toys were all the scene in 1996 with Tickle Me Elmo (which you can buy here from Etsy) and everyone’s favourite astronaut – Buzz Lightyear nailing top spots.

1996 Tickle Me Elmo Plush Vintage Toy
Image credit: Etsy/ElliottEclectics

By 1997 the Spice Girls were on the scene with their own merchandise however it was the Nintendo 64 (or for some the N64) which covered all major magazine covers.

The ever so cute Furby which relaunched with a new look and feel back in 2012/2013 were circled in just about every kids Argos magazine in the late nineties (1998), with parents being warned of a Furby invasion. Even to this day, we say cute to some….scary to others. You can still purchase the classic 1998 Furby on Etsy for a whopping £137!

1998 New In Box Furby Hasbro Tiger Electronics Battery Operated Animated Vintage T
Image credit: Etsy/creationsbycaradonna

Chris Tarrant was making the rounds in 1999 with the popular TV show Who Wants To Be A Millionaire giving little doubt as to why this was the most popular gift for Xmas in 1999. Costing around £23 at the time it got families up and down the UK testing their knowledge. Today a more modern and interactive version has been released for about £20 and no more Tarrant as Jeremy Clarkson now hosts.

Well, there we have it, a list of the hottest most-popular retro toys and gadgets from the 90s and we’re actually pretty impressed at how versatile the list is.

Now let’s hope for remakes of Goosebump books and classic TV shows like Rosie & Jim…..