The best fidget toys for active brains, hands, and feet

Get ready to focus.

 

Danni Danger

Dot Recs

Posted on Jan 20, 2022   Updated on Mar 10, 2022, 1:10 am CST

Who says fidget toys are just for kids? A great pro to being an adult is finding ways to upscale the things that brought us comfort as kids. These are the toys we wish we had growing up while we were spinning our pens or bouncing the desk of the poor kid sitting in front of us.

Fortunately, the internet is now brimming with fidget spinners and do-dads for all ages. You can find mind-soothing jewelry, gadgets, and desk attachments that make it normal – and even kinda fun – to be an avid fidgeter.

colorful types of pop it fidget toys
KlavdiyaV/Shutterstock

Find a fidget for all functions


What are fidget toys?

Up until recently, science categorized fidgeting as a simple coping mechanism. We believed that fidgeting was a response to elevated stress hormones in the body.

But in the last year or so, we’ve seen studies emerging with regards to neurodiversity. And we’re starting to understand that there’s a complicated relationship between stress, attention, the mind, and the body. According to Popular Science, fidgeting is what is known as a displacement behavior– something you do when you’re over or under-stimulated.

Feeling bored? Not engaged enough in what you’re doing? Fidgeting can help wake up the mind and keep you on task. Feeling overwhelmed or tired? A good fidget spinner or toy can help alleviate some of the stress and help your brain process tasks.

Bottom line: fidgeting affects each person differently, and it looks different based on the individual. Occupational therapists and behavioralists are encouraging fidgeters to find what best soothes or stimulates their minds when they need it.

Fortunately, there are a lot of fidget spinners, toys, and even pieces of furniture to satiate that sensory itch. And we here at the Dot are avid fidgeters, so we’ve used our skills and experience to recommend the most effective options.

fidget cubes stacked in front of a brightly colored background
Egeris/Shutterstock

Everyday fidget spinners, toys, pop-its, & more!

1) Pop-It Fidget Toys

pop it pads in various fun shapes and collors

There’s a reason these are popping up everywhere. These cute little silicone pads capture the glorious sensation of popping bubble wrap without the mess and ecological guilt.

You can leave these in different places all across your house, and they fit neatly inside a bag or purse. They’re endless fun, cute enough to leave lying around, and they are oh-so-satisfying.

Price: $14.99


2) Magnetic Fidget Rings

magnetic spinning rings for fidgeters

Magnetic rings are great for finger-fidgeters. These provide the most satisfying magnetic click when they connect and can be moved around in all kinds of variations that make hands happy.

They’re a great pairing with light laptop work or just watching TV. Just remember that this is an audible fidget, so it can be disruptive to the people around you.

Price: $25.99


3) The Squeeze Aromatherapy Dough

The Squeeze aromatherapy dough

The makers at Play-Doh were really on to something. There’s something so enjoyable about molding and squishing the dough in your hands. I think we can improve on the smell, though.

This quaint little bucket of dough uses aromatherapy to bring the ultimate sensory fun – with a squish. The Squeeze smells really good but not overpowering; I’m personally a big fan of the orange scent. And like Play-Doh, it’s not gooey or sticky, so clean-up isn’t a problem.

Price: $11.49


4) Tom’s Flippy Chain Fidget Toy

a bike chain fidget toy

This famous bike-chain fidget toy is a real fan favorite. It’s small, discreet, and totally noiseless, so it’s the perfect toy for work meetings or watching movies with the significant other.

Stainless steel means you can pretty much fidget with it into the infinite future. And you can find these with bands in just about any color you’d want.

Price: $11.95 for 2pk.


5) ONO Hand Roller

Ono hand roller massaging a palm

Ahh, who doesn’t want a tiny massage for their palms? This cool little gadget is just as simple and satisfying as it sounds.

The ONO is also super portable and silent. Looking for a chic, discreet toy that’s office-friendly and partner-approved? This is the fidget toy for you.

Price: $34.99


6) The Fube

The Fube fidget cube with multiple features

This fidget cube– err, dodecahedron? It’s great. It does all the things. The Fube has the best responsive buttons, spinny nubs, toggle switches, and more. It’s soft to touch, brightly colored, and it comes with a fancy carrying case.

The toy has both audible and silent fidget capabilities. So it can be a great medium-ground for fidgeters with sound-sensitive loved ones or coworkers.

Price: $14.99


7) Speks Geode Magnetic Fidget Sphere

magnetic fidget sphere in multiple shapes

While we’re learning all of our geometric shapes, let’s add some magnets. This is a great fidget toy for your desk or workspace. The click of the magnets always provides a nice sensation.

But be careful! The makers of this fidget toy call this a “distractohedron.” I would recommend this for folks who need a breather during hyper-fixation sessions.

Price: $29.95


8) Weighted Baoding Balls

boading balls for weighted palm massage

Not only are these great fidget toys, but they feel so good in your palms. Made with sturdy paracord and steel weighted balls, many folks like to use these babies for meditation, too.

Whether you’re taking a mindful moment or need a fidget toy for times of deep concentration, Baoding balls are nice to have around. Plus you can personalize your colors!

Price: $16.61


9) Perplexus Rebel 3D Maze Toy

Perplexus Rebel 3D Maze

This never-ending puzzle toy holds a very special place in my heart. My ADHD can lead to sensory overload during social gatherings, and it can make me a little tense. Fortunately, a friend left a Perplexus out during a party. My overstimulated brain really latched onto the toy and made it easy for me to engage and disengage in intervals.

3D maze toys provide a busy brain with a nice escape that’s less about accomplishment and more about fun. And it just looks really, really cool.

Price: $14.99


Wearable, On-the-Go Fidget Spinners & Toys

1) A Pair of Chic Fidget Rings

silver pair of fashion jewelry fidget rings

Fidget toys that fit into your daily look are the ultimate fashion combo of form and function. I have this set of adjustable rings. In addition to providing much-needed sensory support throughout the day, I get lots of compliments on them.

They’re also pretty inexpensive. So if you’re like me and you lose lots of jewelry, it’s not a total tragedy. You’ve just left a lovely ring out in the world for some other fidgeter to find!

Price: $22.98


2) Calm Strip

calm strips with keychain

These calming textured strips have two feels: soft sand and river rocks. The feel-good adhesive strips can stick to many of your daily items, like laptops, phones, and other devices.

The pack also comes with a clip-on aluminum carry tag so you can keep calm strips on your keys with ease. If you struggle with keeping track of your fidget toys, you can always just slap a Calm Strip onto something you always carry around.

Price: $24.99


3) Retractable 3-in-1 Fidget Ring

retractable fidget ring bracelet combo

Of course, sometimes you need one piece of jewelry that does a little of everything. This 3-in-1 fidget combo is ideal. Wear it collapsed on your finger or on a chain around your neck.

You can also expand the ring to fit around your wrist. No matter how you wear it, this baby will stretch, spin, and move anytime your mind needs it. And it fits in with any outfit.

Price: $19.98


4) Tactile Stone Pendant

stone pendant fidget necklace

This pendant is made by Bonsai & Cacti, a couple of craft-makers who specialize in creative play and inquisitive toys. Put one of their customized pendants on your favorite chain and you can twist and spin to your heart’s content. And you’ll probably snag a few compliments, too.

Price: $32.23


5) The Mobii Necklace Pendant

Mobii fidget necklace

This simple cluster of looping rings provides endless hours of enjoyable fidgeting with a cool, classic design. Unbundle and move the rings around your favorite chain. This pendant is also hand-made, so your fidgeting helps support an independent business!

Price: $19.99


Our Favorite Fidget Toys for your Desk

1) Standing Desk Wobble Board

standing desk foot fidget balance board

This balance board is covered in different textures to allow for maximum foot-fidgeting. If you’re like me, you can’t work in the same sitting or standing position for long at all.

Fortunately, this board seamlessly transitions to a wobble board so you can shift your weight back and forth to your delight. Improve your balance and satisfy all of your little piggies in one go with this genius addition to your workspace.

Price: $74.99


2) The Ultimate Wobble Chair

wobble chair for fidgeters

Or maybe you’re partial to wobbling your actual seat. Here’s a chair for the wobbliest desk-sitters. Shift your weight around, swing around for a full 360º of foot-and-waist fidget experience. The stool also adjusts for height, so you can use it with a standing, sitting, or transitional desk.

Price: $129.00


3) The Original Bouncy Band

bouncy band for under desk fidgety feet

Of course, some folks can’t always work from the same desk every day. Fortunately, there’s an excellent fidget toy that can attach to any desk!

The Bouncy Band is ideal for students, and can easily and quickly go from classroom to classroom. You or your little fidgeter can do all of the satisfying foot-bouncing without disturbing the folks around you. It’s also really affordable, so you can buy them for a whole family of happy feet.

Price: $16.99


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*First Published: Jan 20, 2022, 1:09 pm CST