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Pop-its, fidget spinners, stress balls—using anxiety-reducing toys to occupy your hands for things like stress relief isn’t a new concept. But if you’ve been noticing more and more “adult” fidget spinners (and other fidget toys) for grown-ups, it’s because more and more brands are recognizing the need is there for adults with sensory needs, ADHD, autism, and those who just feel better when they keep their hands busy. The industry has expanded quite broadly to include some creative, engaging, and quite sophisticated stress relief gadgets to help you focus.

Are fidget toys actually useful?

Focus tools and fidget toys are an essential part of any psychology practice, says Serenity Serseción, PhD, licensed psychologist, practicing at LevelUpPsych in Sunnyvale, California, who has been a clinical psychologist for 15 years. “I use fidget toys constantly in my practice. I recommend them and have a box of them in my office during sessions,” says Dr. Sersecíon. “For anxiety, it is helpful by externalizing anxious energy, which lowers your anxiety, so your brain can focus. It has a similar but smaller effect to exercise when it is not possible, such as in a work situation.”

The thing is, sitting still and paying attention without other stimulation is hard for everyone, says Dr. Sersecíon, but some folks have a lower threshold than others. Think back to the last time you had a full schedule of Zoom meetings. You may have felt some morning anxiety along with feeling jittery, bored, or under-stimulated at some point. “Sometimes your brain needs more stimulation to stay focused. By using fidget toys, you are giving your brain something else to focus on,” says Dr. Sersecíon. That sensory input — like office-friendly fidget tools — can actually help you stay attentive even as your meeting drones on.

The nice part about these compact focus tools is they can be used very discreetly in online meetings and IRL, meaning they’re perfectly work-appropriate fidgets. They also contain a broad spectrum of features, which include different textures, repetitive movements, different shapes, and dexterity features. Most have unique fidget features, like a cube with several sides offering various options. Other toys have soft squishy textures if malleability is satisfying for you. When selecting these focus tools, it is really all about what works for you.

Your ideal relaxation gadget doesn’t necessarily have to be one of the trendy fidget devices — like pop-its, or fidget spinners. Even the most simple mindful desk accessories can help with stress relief and focus at work, school, or while doing other activities.

Here are some of the top-rated stress toys for adults currently on the market to add to your WFH setup or slip in your commuter bag.

Best Fidget Toys for Adults

fidget toys for adults
fidget toys for adults

Best Overall: SPEKS Fleks Flexible Silicone Fidget Magnets — $26.95

What’s included: 6 bendable magnet pieces

Recommended ages: 14 and up (keep away from children)

Materials: Neodymium rare earth magnets and premium silicone

If arranging and rearranging is satisfying to you when you fidget, these silicone magnet pieces offer a quiet chance to build different shapes and rearrange in endless shapes. This is perfect for someone who doesn’t necessarily like to fidget by repeatedly doing one motion, but instead likes to slowly arrange pieces or assemble something with an overarching goal. Just keep in mind that these bendable pieces can be choking hazards for children under 14, so keep them away from young children. These silicone pieces are also not as portable, and harder to keep clean with the silicone material, so it may just be an at-home or at-office toy.

  • Ships in two days
  • Magnetic
  • Flexible pieces
  • Colorful design
  • Not as easily portable
  • Difficult to keep clean, according to reviewers

fidget toys for adults
fidget toys for adults

Best On-the-Go: Antsy Lab Fidget Cube — $13.99

What’s included: 1 cube

Recommended ages: 3 and up

Materials: Metal pieces and plastic

The cube is a focus tool that offers a lot of different options for movement. Some folks like the idea of having different ways to move their hands on one toy, especially if they can only really have one fidget toy on them at work or school. This is great for fidgeters who like different kinds of repetitive movement, including children who deal with anxiety at school and adults who like to have something to fidget during meetings.

The fidget cube has six different features on each side: Click, Glide, Flip, Breathe, Roll, and Spin. These features are great for reducing anxiety and pressure.

Some reviewers have found, though, that over time, the features may get a bit loose and rattly, depending on how often you use it. If pieces become loose, keep out of reach of children, as they can become a choking hazard.

  • 6 unique sides and experiences
  • Quiet and discreet
  • Portable
  • Great for children and adults
  • Pieces get a bit loose over time

Push Pop Bubble Fidget Sensory Toy

Best for Kids: Push Pop Bubble Fidget Sensory Toy — $6.99

What’s included: 1 5-inch-by-5-inch toy

Recommended ages: 3 and up

Materials: Premium-grade silicone

This small, flexible pop-it toy is great for those who like to fidget in the same way over and over. Fidget by popping the circular button indentations, or by bending the entire premium-grade silicone square. Children and adults will find this quiet and portable toy relaxing, stimulating for a hyperactive brain, and calming for an anxious mind. It may not be the most discreet-looking, however, so not ideal for work or meetings. Bonus? It’s washable, durable, and can popped into a purse or diaper bag for on-the-go play.

  • Washable
  • Premium-grade, durable silicone
  • Quiet
  • Portable
  • Safe for kids and adults
  • Not as discreet-looking
  • Only useful for people who like repetitive fidget motions

fidget toys for adults
fidget toys for adults

Best Pocket Toy: Speks 2.5mm Magnet Balls — $34.95

What’s included: 512 magnetic balls, Speks storage case, splitter card, metal building base, and 16-page how-to guide

Recommended ages: 14 and up

Materials: Neodymium rare earth magnets, steel building base, plastic carrying case

This magnetic cube is a perfect example of a fidget toy developed specifically for adults. The small cubes are made up of 512 or 1,000 Neodymium magnets. These would not be safe for children, but for adults they offer the chance to squish, mold, separate, or arrange in relatively endless ways. The cube comes with a steel base to build different shapes of magnet sculptures. The materials are also quite quiet, so there’s not too much of a concern about them being overheard on a Zoom meeting. Keep in mind, 2.5mm is pretty small, so they can easily fit in your pocket or bag.

  • Ships in 2 business days
  • Great for stress relief or creative play
  • Quiet and discreet
  • Choking hazard for small children
  • Some reviewers say the balls are much smaller in person than advertised

fidget toys for adults
fidget toys for adults

Best Desk Toy: Fidgi Pen — $19.99

What’s included: 1 pen

Recommended ages: Adults

Materials: Plastic

Looking for a way to fidget in the most discreet way possible? This Fidgi pen may be just the ticket. It works as a functional pen, but has seven different ways to channel fidgety energy via clicking, spinning a disk, pushing a bouncy clip, flipping a switch, rolling a ball, and a textured grip. This is perfect to keep on your desk at the office, or to carry around in your bag in case you need something to write with on the go. The Fidgi pen comes in 6 fun colors, and the brand offers ink refills so you can keep your Fidgi pen for years to come.

One downside? Seeing that it has many smaller parts that may break, it’s best for adults only.

  • Discreet and quiet
  • Durable plastic
  • Ink refills available
  • Works as real pen
  • Not super durable for anxious and constant fidgeters
  • Some reviewers say it’s too expensive for its quality

fidget toys for adults
fidget toys for adults

Best on a Budget: Edamame Keychain — $6.99

What’s included: 3 keychains

Recommended ages: 3 and up

Materials: Plastic

For those who want a simple, cute toy on hand, this endearing keychain offers a squishy interactive fidgeting when you pop the beads out and push them back in. This focus tool is not necessarily for constant repetitive fidgeting, but for someone who needs something nearby in case they don’t know what to do with their hands. It’s a budget-friendly option and comes with three keychains, so you can keep them in multiple places around your home or office.

Just keep in mind: The brand recommends ages 3 and up, but if the toy breaks, it can become a choking hazard for small children, so keep an eye out during play.

  • Portable
  • Budget-friendly
  • Cute design
  • Not super durable, according to reviewers
  • Can be a choking hazard for small children if it breaks

fidget toys for adults
fidget toys for adults

Best Bracelet: Sensory Genius Band — $11.99

What’s included: 1 sensory band

Recommended ages: 5 and up

Materials: Silicone

The sensory genius band is a wearable fidget device that allows busy hands to be active by rubbing, stroking, or pulling on the tiny extended pieces. The band is a textured silicone that may also feel satisfying to bend and curl. The reviews for this product emphasize that the spiky texture is satisfying for some folks. One reviewer also specified that she wears it in order to prevent herself from picking her skin, because pulling on the silicone spikes offers a similar stimulation to skin picking.

  • Easy to take on and off
  • Can adjust to most wrist sizes
  • Irresistible touch and feel
  • Not as discreet as other toys, according to reviewers
  • May be too big for some children

fidget toys for adults
fidget toys for adults

Best Ring: Stainless Steel Spinner Ring — $8.29

What’s included: 1 ring

Recommended ages: Adults

Materials: Stainless steel

For people who work in busy offices or go to school, large fidget toys may not be the best option. That’s where wearable fidget accessories can be helpful. This stainless steel fidget ring from the brand ALEXTINA is quiet and discreet—you can wear it and spin it all day without anyone noticing it’s a stress-relief tool. It comes in several different colors and patterns, and can easily be returned, exchanged, or replaced if broken.

  • Stylish and discreet
  • Portable
  • Quiet
  • Made with durable stainless steel
  • Great return and exchange policy
  • Sizing runs small
  • Not waterproof

Chewelry fidget necklace

Best Necklace: Chewlery Necklace — $10.88

What’s included: 1 necklace

Recommended ages: 5 and up

Materials: Food-grade safe silicone

Chewelry is a category of fidget toys or sensory products that can support people who need to (or prefer to) chew on things while they concentrate. This is a common habit of people with ADHD and autism. Instead of nail biting or chewing things that are unsafe for teeth, these products can offer an outlet that benefits the wearer. The silicone material is BPA-free, safe, and washable, and each necklace comes in customizable lengths.

  • Food-grade safe silicone
  • Durable
  • Washable
  • Comes in various colors and lengths
  • Not safe for children under 5
  • No returns or exchanges

FAQ

What is fidgeting a symptom of?

Fidgeting can often be a symptom of anxiety, ADHD, OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder), or general stress. All can come with other signs like restlessness, irritability, low mood, or inability to concentrate. In some cases, ADHD and anxiety can ruin your relationship with yourself and others, or interfere with how you live and work each day. This is why it can be helpful to find healthy coping skills, which can include using stress-relief devices like fidget toys, meditation, yoga, breathing exercises, or the support of a licensed mental health professional.

How do I choose the right fidget?

Finding the right fidget toy will likely depend on a few different factors, including where you’ll use it (i.e., in an office or at home), what textures, shapes, and sounds you like, and how often you’ll use it. For example, you may want a small, quiet tool if you work in an office, or you may want a colorful, multipurpose fidget toy if it’ll be a gift for an adult with ADHD in your life.

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Harmony Evans is an award-winning author of Harlequin Kimani Romance, African-American romance, and so on. Harmony Evans is an award-winning author for Harlequin Kimani Romance, the leading publisher of African-American romance. Her 2nd novel, STEALING KISSES, will be released in November 2013. Harmony is a single mom to a beautiful, too-smart-for-her-own-good daughter, who makes her grateful for life daily. Her hobbies include cooking, baking, knitting, reading, and of course, napping and also review some of the best-selling and popular brands and services in the market and also write comprehensive blogs.

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