How Kidults Shaped 2023's Biggest Shopping Trend and the Best Products of the Year

Updated: 08/01/2024


With another holiday season over, toys once again proved to be the most sought-after gifts. However, it wasn’t just children getting them. In recent years, kidults have been one of the biggest contributors to the growth of the toy industry, with brands like LEGO, Mattel, Hasbro, and more launching products specifically targeted towards this group of buyers. 

1990s and 2000s nostalgia has been huge in retail trends lately, and if you’d like to indulge in childhood memories with signature toys and products that have come back, we’ve compiled a list of the most popular kidult launches in 2023 that you can shop now, using your forward2me address. 

What Is Kidult Culture? 

Kidult culture refers to a phenomenon where adults engage in activities, behaviors, or hobbies that are typically associated with children or adolescents. This can include collecting toys, playing video games, watching cartoons or animated movies, participating in activities like coloring or crafting, and embracing various forms of pop culture aimed at younger audiences.
The term "kidult" is a blend of "kid" and "adult," reflecting the fusion of both childlike interests and adult responsibilities. This cultural trend suggests that adults are maintaining or rediscovering elements of their childhood, often as a way to unwind, relieve stress, or reconnect with nostalgic experiences.
In essence, kidult culture reflects a blending of generational lines, where adults find joy, comfort, and entertainment in activities that were traditionally associated with childhood, breaking away from the notion that certain hobbies or interests should be outgrown as one ages.

The Biggest Kidult Hits of 2023 Recapped

From NERF guns to Star Wars action figures, 2023 was a kidult playground, with many exciting releases that are still available today. 
  • Furby 2023 Relaunch: The Furby, returning in 2023, surpasses its previous versions. Quieter mechanics, added accessories like a functional pizza necklace, improved language understanding (more English, less Furbish), and a blessing: a simple three-tap switch-off feature on its forehead gem. This version isn't just a revival; it's a reinvention, blending nostalgia with modern upgrades for an enchanting experience.
  • Nike SB Dunk Low Powerpuff Girls Pack: Marking a quarter-century of heroic adventures, Nike introduces the SB Dunk Low Powerpuff Girls Pack in December 2023. Bursting with creativity, these sneakers showcase three distinct colorways, each dedicated to Blossom, Bubbles, and Buttercup, mirroring their unique traits and vibrant personalities. Crafted with diverse materials and adorned with superhero-inspired artwork, these Dunk Lows encapsulate the strength and individual style of each crime-fighting sister. 
  • PUMA Gremlins: Inspired by the iconic characters Gizmo and Stripe from the beloved 1984 film, these shoes represent the eternal battle of good versus evil.The mismatched shoe pair showcases Gizmo on one and Stripe on the other, capturing the essence of their timeless conflict. Intricate details include the characters' heads at the back and mismatched colors, symbolizing their duality. 
  • Hasbro Star Wars The Black Series: Enter the immersive world of Star Wars with The Black Series (TBS), a dynamic toy line crafted by Hasbro. This series encompasses action figures, vehicles, Force FX lightsabers, and collectible items that bring the galaxy far, far away to life. Each action figure within The Black Series reflects characters from the iconic movies, shows, books, comics, and video games. Fans can relish in the diverse array of beloved characters, spanning both the Expanded Universe and the canonical Star Wars universe.
  • Mad Beauty Elf Collection: Mad Beauty partnered with Warner Bros. Discovery to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the heartwarming classic "Elf" from New Line Cinema. This exclusive beauty collection pays homage to the beloved film, capturing its whimsy and charm in a range of delightful products. The Elf collection boasts packaging designs adorned with iconic elements from the movie, including candy canes, Gimbels, snow globes, and memorable quotes from the lovable Buddy. From festive bath sets to captivating beauty items, each product evokes the spirit of the film, promising a delightful experience that fans of Elf will cherish.
  • Care Bears x SHEGLAM: Makeup brand SHEGLAM teamed up with the iconic 'Care Bears' to unveil a dreamy and limited-edition makeup collection that encapsulates the whimsy of these beloved colorful bears. Drawing inspiration from the endearing and fuzzy-textured characters, the collection features palettes, blushes, and lipsticks adorned with vibrant shades. What adds a delightful touch is the playful naming of the product shades, with names like Tickled Pink, Get Your Shine On, and Love-a-Lot—echoing the genuine spirit of the Care Bears, with the latter being an actual Care Bear moniker.
  • Fisher-Price Chatter Phone with Bluetooth: The special edition Fisher-Price Chatter Telephone is a real blast from the past, with a twist. Reminiscent of the iconic toy from yesteryears, this modern rendition packs a punch without any apps, embodying the nostalgia of childhood with a smart upgrade. Featuring an intuitive and charmingly bulky design, this 'super-advanced' rotary dialer connects seamlessly to your mobile device via Bluetooth technology. Now, you can make and receive real calls through your existing phone plan using the familiar Chatter Telephone. This mobile marvel goes beyond mere aesthetics—it's equipped with grown-up functionalities like speakerphone and to dial out.
  • The 2023 Barbie Licensed Products : In 2023, Mattel marked a significant milestone with the signing and launch of 100 licenses to commemorate the revival of the iconic "Barbie" brand alongside the release of a new movie. Each product's authenticity underscored the brand's commitment to fostering genuine connections with fans. From food and beverage to beauty, apparel, toys, and accessories, this comprehensive range forms the ultimate kidult collection. This extensive lineup not only solidified Mattel's global authority but also set the stage for what lies ahead in their brand journey. 
  • Hasbro Classic Games Line: Ageless Innovation has revitalized Hasbro's classic games: Game of Life, Scrabble, and Trivial Pursuit, with an emphasis on timeless design and nostalgia tailored for older players. These cherished games have been thoughtfully crafted to cater to the needs and interests of aging individuals while fostering multi-generational play within families. Leveraging Ageless Innovation's expertise in creating engaging experiences for older adults and drawing from Hasbro's gaming acumen, these renowned titles will undergo updates to embrace inclusivity across ages.
  • Disney100 Collabs: Disney commemorated an extraordinary 100 years of enchanting storytelling in 2023, and in honor of this monumental milestone, major brands joined the festivities. From Swarovski's sparkling tributes to Charlotte Tilbury's glamorous nods, LEGO's playful renditions, and even tech giant Samsung's innovations, Disney's century of wonder has inspired an array of limited collaborations. These partnerships allow kidults to revel in nostalgia, offering a chance to indulge in beloved characters and timeless tales. 

Shop the Best Kidult Releases with forward2me 

For millennials, the resurgence of kidult culture isn't merely a fleeting trend; it's a meaningful embrace of nostalgia intertwined with modern-day convenience. The allure of reliving cherished childhood moments through a plethora of exciting products has sparked a profound connection, offering a bridge between past and present. With a myriad of choices available, from classic toys to revamped editions and collaborations with major brands, the appeal is as diverse as it is compelling.

The convenience of a forwarding address means that no matter where in the world millennials may find themselves, these nostalgic treasures can be easily obtained and delivered right to their doorstep. So take a trip down memory lane and enjoy all the perks of a forward2me shipping, from Combine & Repack options to the peace of mind of free return to sender and price match guarantee. 

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