The best fidget toys are designed to keep your energy focused where you want it by keeping you stimulated. In school, kids play with them to help stay focused. At work, adults use them to increase productivity. In a short time, they have become an important part of modern life.
In this article, we’re going to look at the top fidget toys available on the market. Among them all, you’ll find different fidgets suitable for soothing your energy in different ways. Some are focused on texture sensations, others on finger movement, and some are squeezed. But then there’s some that include as many as ten different fidget options in one product! Although that sounds like it would be an obvious purchase, it can feel overwhelming to sift through the options and find one that adapts to your energy the best.
While we do have a product we consider the best fidget available, there might be one further down the list that helps you achieve concentration or relaxation. Keep in mind what you like to do to keep your fingers busy. Whether it’s flipping pens or bouncing your legs, there is a fidget that can take over the job!
Different Types of Fidgets
As mentioned before, fidget toys come in a range of different types. Among these, differences are found with the needs of the user, the range of sensations offered, and even the age of the user. Knowing what categories of fidgets are out there will help you narrow down your purchase! Here are some of the different types of the best fidget toys you can find.
Perhaps the best known type of fidget toy, spinners have been everywhere starting from late 2019. Spinners are very satisfying to watch and can help calm and distract kids and adults alike.
With their now-iconic appearance, some people might not even know that non-spinning fidgets exist. At first, I didn’t either! But that doesn’t mean they are overrated. They’re popular for a reason!
With spinners, there are a lot of options. If you want a basic spinner, it’s important to find one with smooth bearings and minimal resistance. If you want to get fancier, you can get a pop-enabled fidget spinner, LED spinners, and even Transformer robot spinners.
At school or during events where sitting and attention is needed, these are great fidget toys to have with you. Since they are small and quiet, they won’t distract or disrupt your environment and they are very portable.
These fidgets are specifically designed to soothe those who are challenged by ADHD. Since ADHD impacts individuals in different ways, there are a wide range of fidgets designed to help soothe symptoms.
While some people are helped by keeping their fingers busy, others are helped with a whole hand intervention. Some are more interested in ‘driving’ something around a table. Each distraction can help the ADHD person focus, but they have to decide which is the right one for them.
Since ADHD is a very individualized condition, choosing a fidget to help with it can be challenging. I recommend trying a few different fidgets to see what helps. At the end of the day, the goal is to replace habits like hand-picking or to improve one’s concentration on a task. Each ADHD fidget can do that, but your goal is going to vary.
Adult Fidget Toys
While this is a broad category, adult fidget toys are ones tailored for…well, adults. Rather than relying on flashy colors or combinations that would appeal to children, these are meant for adults who wish to use something a little easier to conceal. They’re made to be easy to transport and inconspicuous, so adults feel comfortable when they need to soothe their energy in a conference room or on public transit.
In this category, there are a multitude of different functioning fidgets, and they can absolutely have overlap with the other two types that I mentioned. I find that adult fidget toys are meant to be taken seriously, almost in a clinical sense. Not meant for entertainment, they are specially designed to have an effective impact on the well-being of the user. Although you can use them however you please, I’ve seen them recommended to improve productivity and motivation in the office.
While fidget toys don’t tend to be purchased based on brand names like cars do, there are still some brands that I always keep an eye out for. I find that these brands provide great quality fidgets, often because they specialize in producing them for a specific function.
Tom’s Fidgets is responsible for some of the highest-rated and most-used fidget toys on the market. Focusing mostly on stainless steel constructed fidgets, these are always high-quality items that are meant to replace nail biting, paper ripping, doodling, pen spinning, or whatever else you’ve used up until now to deal with your idle hands.
In making their fidgets, Tom’s Fidgets has even outlined their philosophy on their website. This is not a company that produces fidgets for a quick buck. Instead, they take the construction seriously and only sell products that are guaranteed to help your attention rather than take from it. As a bonus, I appreciate that this company has been around since even before the current fidget craze. They made their name in quality before it was even popular!
Ono specializes in a rolling-type fidget that is unique among fidget manufacturers. Due to their hyper-specific usage and focus, some claim that Ono is responsible for the best fidget toys for adults. Once again, I appreciate that fidget takes adult needs seriously and tries to provide the best products for them.
All of their products are designed to be discreet, comfortable, and functional. While you might not find the rolling function to be the best fit for you, it’s undeniable that they’ve built a brand based on it. Unlike spinners, Ono products are almost intractable from their name-brand and their imitators are few and far between. If there are any, the quality is not going to be up to the standard that Ono sets with their fidgets. With their simple but robust build, it is pretty hard to break or lose them.
As a sort of specialist, Bitopbi is known for its stainless steel and brass fidget toys. You’ll find one of their sprocket toys listed below, but they have several products to offer. Typically, they all offer some variation on gears, chains, and sprockets.
Due to the sturdy construction material, Bitopbi can endure a lot of usage. If you’re buying for someone that can get a little rough with their fidgets, this brand will withstand and you won’t need to buying new ones all the time.
As for the actual function, all of Bitopbi’s selections have great multi-purpose usage without over-complicating the actual fidget. All of them are designed to adapt to the need of the user. Not only that, but they offer a wide range of colour options on their products as well so you can customize your purchase.
Top 5 Fidget Toys
Finding the top fidget toys is dependent on the needs of the user. As mentioned before, fidgets can be specially developed according to their purpose. Qualities like sensation, size, portability, and perceptibility by others are all criteria that should be considered when buying a fidget. Therefore, our list finds the top products that strike a good balance between these essential qualities.
Since I personally use this fidget every single day, I know it’s a top-tier fidget. It is the perfect motion to stop me from picking the skin around my fingernails. While I might be biased, this particular fidget toy has done a lot to help me stop a bad habit that I didn’t like.
If fulfilling the criteria we talked about before can determine the best fidget toys, then this one checks all the boxes. Being silent, discreet, small, engaging, this toy is perfect to bring with you to any situation. With the impeccably smooth spin, you can get lost in the flow.
For me, this fidget now lives in my pocket. If there’s any drawback to its design, it’s that the silicon elastics are easy to rip off and remove. But if you do this, I really think you’re still getting value out of it because the product itself is so affordable. Replacements are no big deal when a fidget perfectly addresses and replaces my bad habits.
If the greatest fidget in the world is determined by how many different options can be rolled into one, then the Dodecagon could be a clear winner. For somebody who doesn’t know what sort of fidget they should use, this one can be adapted to any need.
I like the Swiss Army Knife approach of the Dodecagon. Rather than carry around twelve fidgets with me, this one efficiently fits all of them into the palm of my hand. It can be used to keep your kid distracted and it can be used to soothe the parent’s anxiety. Keeping one of these around will ensure you’re prepared for any “excess energy” situation.
And it’s cost-effective, too. For the price of one, you’re getting a lot of variety. As it doesn’t fit great in a pocket, I would only remove it from consideration of being “the best” because it can be kind of clunky to carry around. But if you need something that can be left on a desk or can be brought along in a backpack, the dodecagon hits the mark.
With six unique sides, this PILPOC fidget cube also takes the approach of giving multiple sensory options at once.
I like the balance here. When you want to use it without distracting others, there’s quiet sides. I find this handy in a public place. When you’re at home and you can be as loud as you need, there are quiet sides. Within all these, there are sensory options for squeezing, clicking, spinning and more. All that considered, I find the Fube to be surprisingly small. Of course, this is a great benefit, but I am amazed to have so many options in the palm of my hand.
When I need to calm myself and stay discreet about it, a fidget like this is perfect. While it might seem like a lesser option with less unique sides, some might find the more compact options to be less overwhelming. And to top it all off, it has a nice case that can be easily slipped into your backpack or purse so your fidget is secured at all times.
If you like to keep your fingers busy with folding and hinging, the Infinity Cube is great. While it’s not a silent option, nor does it truly have an infinite amount of configurations, if you plan to use your fidget heavily this is an option that’s gentle on the fingers. Over a hundred times, I’ve seen them dropped without even the smallest of damages. While you figure out all of the different ways it can bend, it can withstand your heavy usage.
Since these are so effective and cost-friendly, I started keeping them as backup gifts to have on occasions when I needed to unexpectedly give a gift. I gave it to one co-worker and they loved it. By engaging both hands, the inconspicuous Infinity Cube offers a unique way to pass the time of a boring zoom meeting or conference call.
Also, when it’s folded together as a whole, it doesn’t even look like a fidget. Who knew that one of the best fidgets could also be a great desk decoration?
An adult version of the classic spinner? You bet! An inconspicuous choice, it’s small but has a nice amount of weight. Not only is it a great product to soothe anxiety, but having a smooth spinning distraction like this will help calm ADHD as well. I find the unpredictable motions of the spinner to be engaging without hijacking my focus entirely.
I like this one because it looks elegant and professional. It’s quiet and doesn’t look anything like a child’s toy. Whenever I need it, it fits well into my pocket. Since the spinner is weighted, it has a better chance of staying in your hands rather than flying across the room. With spinners, I find that this is one of the greatest drawbacks and this product addresses that nicely.
Unlike some of its plastic counterparts, this spinner has a stainless steel construction that can withstand usage and the ceramic bearings keep it resistance-free.
Other Best Fidget Toys
- Appash Fidget Cube. A great multi-function for those who prefer squeezing sensations. As a bonus, it comes in different colors.
- Bitopbi Sprocket. A robust, stainless-steel fidget based around mechanical gears, sprockets, and chains. Versatile and affordable!
- Original Fidget Retro. With an attractive controller shape, this fidget provides both quiet and loud clicking functions in a compact size
- ONO Roller. Deceptively simple, this fidget rolls discreetly in the palm of your hands. Customize it with your favorite color and size to suit your needs.
- Transformer Robot Spinners. A fun take on the classic spinner design. Perhaps meant for kids, but I get a lot of fun out of the assembly aspect.
As I touched on, there are a lot of different motions or movements that people do with fidgets. During a meeting, some people rip paper to shreds. Some people spin (and drop) pens. All of these different movements need a different type of fidget.
The best fidgets are the ones that address the thing you want them to address. To find the one that satisfies your specific need, it might take some testing. If you’re at that stage, then there are multi-packs that can help give you an effective overview of options with just one product. However, there are some distinctions between products that you should note right off the bat if you already know what environment you will be using them in.
Things to Look Out For in the Best Fidget Toys
- Sound. If you are in an office or classroom setting, it will be essential to get a product that is as silent as possible so you can avoid disrupting others.
- Appearance. Similar to above, you might want something that is inconspicuous and does not distract others. However, colours and other visual sensations might contribute to your sense of relaxation as well. For most fidgets, having something that will fit in the palm of your hand or can interact easily with your fingers is essential.
- Function. Most significantly, there are distinctions between the functions of the fidgets. There are ones that click, slide, squeeze, roll, assemble/disassemble, spin, and more. If you aren’t sure which sensation will work for you, this is where a multi-product will be useful.
- Quality. This may seem obvious, but there are some clues to high quality fidgets that are available in the product information. For example, if you’re looking for a sliding toy, make sure they’re constructed with smooth ball bearings! Otherwise it might run the risk of breaking. In general, products constructed with more metal parts than plastic are going to have greater endurance and longevity.
If you need some further help, I’d recommend looking up videos to see the fidgets in action. A video that does trials of different fidgets and reviews them in real time can help make your purchase decision easier by getting a better sense of the size, function, and utility of the fidget.
Sometimes it’s hard to focus on tasks if your mind and body are looking for distraction. All of the best fidgets in the world are made to help eliminate those distractions by, well, distracting you with a different source of stimulation. Other ways of dealing with that lack of focus, like biting nails or clicking on a pen, might not be appreciated by the people around you.
I personally like fidgets because they improve my state of mind. I never realized how much stress I was experiencing because I was feeling overwhelmed by noises or feeling the need to pace around the room. For someone with ADHD or autism, it can be an essential tool. Like having a magic wand, a fidget can make my brain believe any environment is my ideal, calming space.