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1980s Girls Toys That Every Girl Couldn’t Live Without

Ah, the 80s. The time of the Breakfast Club and perms. The Pac-Man arcade game was just released and things were swell. However, unlike children of today, 80s kids did not have smartphones, iPads, or the internet to entertain them. There was television, but you can only watch TV for so long. Thus, toys were essential for the entertainment of children. Amongst the many 80s toys, some stand apart in overwhelming popularity and are still merchandised today—here are the top 80s toys for girls!

Polly Pocket Dolls

Polly Pocket Party Boat Adventure in a packaging
Photo credit: Cordeiro https://www.flickr.com/photos/cordeiro/14090741009


Polly Pocket has been around for decades, but the original Polly Pockets had a certain look that today’s simply don’t have. Who wasn’t a fan of the itty bitty plastic dollhouses that you could snap closed and take wherever you went? The original cases were heart, circle, star, flower, or shell-shaped in hot pink, lavender purple, baby blue, etc. There were so many different houses that you could collect, each with their own unique interior design.

The original Polly Pocket Dolls had the attention to detail that truly elevates great toys from the good toys—using the little holes that were scattered around the Polly Pocket house, you could stick the Polly Pocket doll in it so she could stand. There were a variety of dolls with different outfits and hair colors, but all they could really do is bend over and sit down. The only drawback was they were so tiny it was easy to lose the pieces and then you’d just be stuck with a little house.


colorful skip-it toys on the floor
Photo from Wikipedia Commons


The Skip-It was a simple ball attached to a long cable that had a small ring on the end to slide your foot through to wear around your ankle. It was a fun game to see how many times you could swing your ankle around to gain momentum and use the other foot to jump over the incoming cable. It was like playing jump rope by yourself. Skip-It was a beloved 80s toy after exploding in popularity after being featured on Nickelodeon.

Cabbage Patch Dolls

Cabbage Patch Dolls displayed in a child’s crib
Photo credit: William McKeehan https://www.flickr.com/photos/william_mckeehan/9111933998


Cabbage Patch Kid Dolls came in a variety of different hair colors, skin shades, and eye colors. They all had rope-like hair that differed in length and extremely plump, round, sculpted faces that were permanently affixed in an awkward closed mouth smile position. These beloved dolls were cherished by children worldwide, and are currently one of the longest-running franchises in the United States.


purple Keypers
Photo credit: Aimee Ray https://www.flickr.com/photos/merwing/9342277825/


Keypers were animal-shaped toys that had long colorful hair and compartments you could open up to keep your things in. Popular Keypers included a snail, turtle, horse, and rabbit. They came in so many bright colors and were decorated with accessories or beautiful patterns.

Care Bears

different Care Bears stuffed toys
Photo credit: John Trainor https://www.flickr.com/photos/trainor/2339618314


The original Care Bears were six colorful smiling bears that each had a symbol on their belly. The happy-go-lucky bears each had unique symbols represented the bear’s personality type—for example, the green bear with a four-leafed clover was good luck bear. The blue bear with the rain cloud was Grumpy Bear. The pink bear with hearts was Love Bear.

With bears so cute, it was impossible not to collect them all!

Glitter Batons

The glitter baton was an essential accessory to any costume and had endless possibilities as to what it could offer. If you were a cheerleader, it could function as a baton. Alternatively, if you were a princess or fairy, it could easily turn into a magic wand.

Watching the glitter fall to the bottom was so mesmerizing, you had to flip it over and watch again!

Charm Necklaces

a necklace with different charms
Photo credit: Mary Anne Enriquez https://www.flickr.com/photos/urbanwoodswalker/4189170349


Forget the delicate and dainty charm bracelets you today—charm necklaces were all the rage in the 80s. Every girl’s goal was to collect as many charms as possible to adorn their own colorful chain linked necklace. Charms came in a variety of fun shapes and colors ranging from pink kitties to blue rollerskates, and some of them even had bells so it would jingle as you walked. It would take over the whole front of your body, but it was worth showing off.

Pound Puppies

Pound Puppies on the bed
Photo credit: Babbletrish https://www.flickr.com/photos/babbletrish/2867392587


Pound puppies were small plush stuffed animals that came in a variety of colors and patterns, but all had the same puppy dog face: floppy ears and droopy eyes. They came in a cardboard box shaped like a doghouse and a certificate of adoption.

They were your best friend!

Strawberry Shortcake

Strawberry Shortcake character figurines
Photo credit: Strawbryb https://www.flickr.com/photos/strawbryb/5242673725


Strawberry Shortcake was an adorable freckled red-headed doll that had a pink bonnet, an aproned dress, brown shoes, and striped stockings. This notable doll had many other food-named friends and as an added benefit, she actually smelled like strawberries. Delicious!

Teddy Ruxpin

sitting Teddy Ruxpin doll
Photo credit: MAKE https://www.flickr.com/photos/makermedia/5931482809/


Teddy Ruxpin was a battery-powered talking doll that came wearing a red long sleeve shirt with a brown sweater vest layered over it. His mouth and eyes moved as he told stories and typically came with a book and a cassette tape.

Due to the audio cassette device and batteries that were inside of him, he wasn’t the softest plushie around. However, the weight of the technology inside of him allowed him to have a stable sitting position so he could read to you as you follow along with your book!


Popples on a pink background
Photo credit: Nabiabi https://www.flickr.com/photos/nabiabi/5933865497


Popples were marsupial bear-like animals that had a long tail with a pom-pom at the end and extra hair on their head. These creatures could fold into themselves to resemble a pocketed ball shape and then be flipped outward to form their original shape. They looked like baby burritos that were tightly swaddled in ball formation and normal stuffed animals in their relaxed formation—every Popple was many different colors from their fur and belly to their cheeks and pom-pom tails.

Glo Worms

two Glo Worms on a grass
Photo credit: Ariel Grimm https://www.flickr.com/photos/in2thewoodz9/3402377475/


Glo Worms were a nighttime essential in the 80s. This worm plushie had tired eyes and pajamas on, complete with a long nightcap and a tassel on the end. With its soft exterior but hard, battery-powered interior that would release a comforting, subtle glow, Glo Worms were an absolute hit among younger kids.


These were some of the most popular 80s toys for girls! Over the decades, many of these toys have revamped and re-released to capitalize on their popularity. However, the 80s toys had their own look, and nothing can beat the originals!

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