Saturday 19 February 2011


Just one look at the contents of the parcel the postie dropped off the other day, courtesy of UKMums.TV (it's a brand new real mums reviews website going live imminently - if you're in the first 2000 to sign up you'll even get a free gift from them!) and I instantly knew that the girls would get extremely excited when they got home from school ! They were about to discover Squinkies, the latest craze to take the United States by storm and, I have absolutely no doubt, shortly to do the same thing on this side of the Atlantic.

So what exactly are Squinkies? Well, basically, each Squinkie is an adorable little character made of squishy soft plastic that comes in an individual bubble. (Maybe the name is a cross between squishy and dinky ?!) You just pop open the little bubble to reveal the cute little Squinkie within, then either add it to your collection or get ready to swap it with your mates if it's one you've already got.

Yes, you read right - get ready for a whole new playground collecting craze ! Sophie and Juliette are still busy swapping SillyBandz on a daily basis at school and begging to spend their pocket money on yet another packet, but I'm sure they'll find space in their pockets for some Squinkies too ! There are already over 800 cute characters to collect in the Squinkies range and countless more in the pipeline. I am constantly astounded by the hours the girls spend tipping out all their SillyBandz and putting them in piles and counting them and working out a complicated exchange rate system ("you can have one glow-in-the dark, smelly or glitter one for two normal ones but Hello Kitties are worth two" !) that even a 9-year-old and a 6-year-old can understand and respect without any tears or tantrums !

Squinkies have understood this and are clearly tapping into the playground swapping mania. They explain : "Hot favourite will be the bubble packs containing 16 Squinkies to create a tiny world of your favourite friends. Each pack contains 12 clear bubbles and four mystery ones adding an element of surprise and there are lots of collections to choose from. Great for collecting and swapping with friends, there are Squinkies babies; kitties, pets and ponies or alternatively combine monkeys, piglets, frogs or turtles to create your own menagerie or zoo." The cute little characters remind me a bit of a smaller version of Littlest Petshops but the girls know they're not allowed to swap those because they cost too much, so these offer a cheaper but equally appealing option at pocket-money prices.

There are bigger items available to add to your collection, such as the Tea Time Surprize! playset or the Gumball Surprize! playset, which are perfect for birthday and Christmas presents, or for teaching your kids about how to save up their pocket money for a more expensive buy rather than spending it all on sweets (or SillyBandz !) as soon as they receive it. The playsets offer new ways to play with the Squinkies and can lead to some great imaginative play between friends and sisters. The little plastic bubbles that the Squinkies come in instantly reminded me of the little toys you can get in vending machines outside of supermarkets and the playsets carry on this theme.

These are definitely going to be a huge hit with little girls, and would maybe interest some little boys, but the extremely pink packaging would almost certainly put them off buying them for themselves. The Squinkies are extremely cute to look at but also offer great playing opportunities so you don't just have to leave them sitting on a shelf looking pretty. One quick look at amazon shows that there are zillions of different bubble packs and other playsets available, so make sure you find out the exact number of the item your little collector wants so that you don't get the wrong one. I think I need to go and clear some shelf space in the girls' bedrooms now !

star rating : 4/5 from an adult viewpoint but a definite 5/5 from the girls

RRP : approx £13 for a bubble pack of 16 Squinkies

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Other reviews you may be interested in :


  1. Elaine Livingstone19 February 2011 at 21:13

    they are not a bad price, and a nice size to fit in a bag for school. wonder how you and other bloggers mange to get these freebies, always amazes me.

  2. awww they are so sweet! i just no my neice would lose them though!

  3. Very true - I keep rescuing them from under the settee !

  4. Elaine - keep an eye out on twitter for people asking for mum bloggers or parent testers. And make sure you join up UKMums.TV for future opportunities :-)

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