The Toy Insider released its annual holiday gift guide on Thursday, unveiling its top picks for this year's best kids' toys and tech.

After reviewing the toys extensively for their value, originality, skill building, product integrity and fun factor, The Toy Insider team of experts have chosen their selection for this year, split into three categories.

Divided by age, The Hot 20 is the list of toys expected to be at the top of children's wish lists this Christmas, the Top Tech 12 follows the growing trend of technology in children's toys, such as drones, wearables, and robotic pets, and STEM 10 is a fun but educational list of science, technology, engineering and math toys.

Walmart, Target, and Toys 'R' Us have also released their hot holiday toy lists, with Star Wars, Hot Wheels, Pokemon making a strong showing this season.

As the toys are all expected to be in high demand during the holiday season, possibly even selling out, the lists will give parents an idea of what to expect on wish lists to avoid disappointment on Christmas Day.

Although The Toy Insider's 2016 holiday gift guide will appear in the November issue of Family Circle magazine on October 11, and appears online on its website, the three lists can be found below now to get ahead of your Christmas shopping.

The Toy Insider's Hot 20

0-2 years

  • Laugh & Learn Crawl-Around Learning Center (Fisher-Price)
  • Go! Go! Smart Friends Enchanted Princess Palace (VTech)

3-5 years

  • Disney Frozen Northern Lights Elsa (JAKKS Pacific)
  • Disney My Time Singing Elena of Avalor (Hasbro)
  • FurReal Friends Torch My Blazin' Dragon (Hasbro)
  • Lion Guard Training Lair Playset (Just Play)
  • PAW Patrol Monkey Temple (Spin Master)
  • PJ Masks Headquarters Playset (Just Play)
  • Pokémon My Friend Pikachu (TOMY)
  • Talk-to-Me Mikey (Playmates Toys)

6-8 years

  • Animal Jam-Club Geoz Dance Party Playset (Jazwares)
  • Hatchimals (Spin Master)
  • Hot Wheels AI (Mattel)
  • Shopkins Happy Places Happy Home (Moose Toys)
  • Snuggles, My Dream Puppy (Moose Toys)
  • Skylanders Imaginators (Activision)



  • LEGO Star Wars Resistance X-Wing Fighter (The LEGO Group)
  • Nintendo MarioKart 8 Quadcopter (Carrera of America)
  • Pokémon Sun & Pokémon Moon (Nintendo)
  • Speak Out (Hasbro)

The Toy Insider's Top Tech 12

  • Air Hogs Helix Sentinel Drone (Spin Master)
  • Barbie Hello Dreamhouse (Mattel)
  • BOSEbuild Speaker Cube (Bose)
  • CHiP (WowWee)
  • CodeGamer (Thames & Kosmos)
  • Kurio Watch (KD Interactive)
  • LUMI (WowWee)
  • Mebo (Skyrocket Toys)
  • Meccano Meccasaur (Spin Master)
  • Sky Rover Voice Command Drone (Auldey Toys North America)
  • Sky Viper Hover Racer (Skyrocket Toys)
  • Zoomer Chimp (Spin Master)

The Toy Insider's STEM 10

  • 3Doodler Start Essentials Pen Set (WobbleWorks)
  • Barbie STEM Kit (Thames & Kosmos)
  • Bloxels (Mattel)
  • Code & Go Robot Mouse Coding Activity Set (Learning Resources)
  • Geckobot (Thames & Kosmos)
  • Mighty Makers Director's Cut Building Set (K'NEX)
  • Project MC2 We Heart Chemistry Kit (ALEX Brands)
  • Roominate Cotton Candy Carnival (PlayMonster)
  • Think & Learn Code-A-Pillar (Fisher-Price)
  • VEX Robotics Zip Flyer (HEXBUG)