Adults Drive Toy Market for First Time Ever

Adults Drive Toy Market for First Time Ever

For the first time, adults purchased more toys for themselves last quarter than any other age group, exceeding the traditionally strong preschooler sector.
(Photo: by PATRICK KOVARIK/AFP via Getty Images)
  • Popular toys among adults include sports toys, Lego sets, trading cards, and Squishmallows, with the adult interest helping to offset a 1% decline in overall toy sales through April compared to last year, despite a 38% increase in dollar sales since 2019.
  • The pandemic significantly boosted adult interest in toys, with collectors and new enthusiasts driving demand for items like diecast cars, action figures, dolls, board games, and construction sets; companies are now releasing more adult-targeted products, such as Hasbro's X-Men 97 Marvel Legends action figures and Star Wars Clone Captain Rex helmet.
  • For the first time, adults purchased more toys for themselves last quarter than any other age group.

Adults spent more money on toys for themselves last quarter than any other age group, breaking through the historically robust preschooler market.

In January through April, customers over the age of eighteen (aged eighteen) spent $1.5 billion on toys, overtaking the three-to-five-year-old age group as the most influential age group for the toy industry, according to a new report by market research firm Circana.

Taking a more comprehensive approach, the survey discovered that up to 43% of adults purchased a toy for themselves in the preceding year, with socializing, collecting, and personal enjoyment serving as the primary drivers.

The study found that trading cards, Squishmallows, Lego sets, and sports toys were some of the most sought-after toys available at the time.

The increasing trend of adults playing with toys is encouraging since it might help offset the overall fall in toy sales. According to Circana, dollar sales in the toy business increased 38% compared to 2019 even though they decreased by 1% through April compared to the same period last year.

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Why Toys?

Despite the fact that adults have always bought toys for themselves, industry analysts assert that this formerly limited market has expanded because of the collector market for toys like Barbie and Hot Wheels.  A significant impetus for it was the pandemic.

People sought to rekindle their childhood playthings during the pandemic when they were wealthy and could spend more time alone at home with their families.

On the other hand, those who were already enthusiastic toy collectors were much more interested. We discuss anything, including diecast cars, action figures, and dolls. Aside from memorabilia, adult curiosity is also piqued by board games, Lego construction sets, and trade cards-which are currently quite fashionable.

He stated that new toys designed exclusively for adult consumers are currently being released by a number of toy businesses.

The top two newly released goods in the action figure category from January to April were both products that children would not purchase. Based on an animated series targeted for an adult audience, the Hasbro X-Men 97 Marvel Legends action figure set is the top item.

Hasbro's Clone Caption Rex role-play helmet from Star Wars The Black Series is the second most talked-about new product of the time. This collection, which costs $130, resembles a movie prop.

Traditional modeling kits, which were often preferred by senior consumers, have been replaced by Lego sets.

Sitting down to make something of your own as an adult is quite soothing, and it now comes in a construction set instead of a standard model kit. Lego captures a significant portion of the 18+ market.

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