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I may be a millennial woman well past adolescence, but sometimes I still feel like a tween girl at heart. I’m like the reverse of Jennifer Garner in 13 Going on 30. I just want to go back in time to the simple days when my biggest problem was whether my mom would let me go to the movies with my 6th grade boyfriend (spoiler alert: she would not, and he broke up with me shortly afterwards). But those really were the glory days! Sleepovers, school field trips and summer camp. No teenage angst, no real-world stress and no social media. Take me back!
Needless to say, I feel like I can connect with tweens today down to a T — the T stands for Taylor Swift and TikTok, of course. While these girls may still seem young, they definitely don’t want gifts that make them feel young (in other words, no dolls).
So, if you’re searching for the perfect present for a pre-teen, you’ve come to the right place. Below are my 15 top picks, from DIY craft kits to a Harry Styles sequin pillow (might need to snag that one for myself). Shop these fun finds for the holidays, birthdays and everything in between!
Jewelry Making Kit
To quote T.Swift’s new song “You’re On Your Own, Kid”: “So make the friendship bracelets, take the moment and taste it.” Wise words from a wise woman! Friendship bracelets are a timeless tradition beloved by tweens, teens and adults alike. This kit includes beads made of gold, clay and pearls, plus letters to spell out names or initials.
Pink Cinema Light Box with 400 Letters and Emojis
Spell it out! Let your tween express what’s on her mind with this pink cinema light box. Each kit contains 400 letters and emojis, as well as two markers. A fun way to decorate her room or celebrate special occasions!
Pooqla Colorful LED Marquee Letter Lights with Remote
If there’s one thing we know about tweens, it’s that they love a good neon light show. This marquee letter light can change into 16 different colors with a handy remote. It’s also secretly a nightlight but shh! She never has to know.
Glossier Balm Dotcom Trio
Fact: tween girls love Glossier, especially now that Olivia Rodrigo is the beauty brand’s celebrity ambassador. But since your pre-teen may be too young to wear makeup, this set of lip balms will make everyone happy.
Harry Styles Sequin Pillow
Another fact: twin girls love Harry Styles (I mean, who doesn’t?). This sequin pillow magically transforms into a picture of Harry’s face! Perfect for a pre-teen who has a crush on the pop star.
Trend Tech Brands Rainbow Bling Couture Boombox
Rainbow bright! This colorful rhinestone boombox features Bluetooth FM speakers with LED speakers. Pre-teen party!
Lego Dots Designer Toolkit
Legos are not just for kids! This Lego Dots Designer Toolkit is a more mature version of the classic toy that will allow your tween to explore her imagination. With 10 canvases and more than 860 tiles in bright colors, this creative tool kit offers endless possibilities for fun.
Squishmallows Plush Mystery Box
I may be a grown adult, but I’m not ashamed to admit that I own one of these Squishmallows. They’re basically like a combo of a stuffed animal and a plush pillow. This Mystery Box contains five surprise Squishmallows — such a fun gift for any kid!
Custom 18k Gold-Plated Name Necklace
Every tween girl just wants to feel special, so make her day with this personalized pendant. You can customize these 18k gold-plated necklaces with your favorite pre-teen’s name.
Tulip One-Step Tie-Dye Kit
Tweens will die for this tie-dye kit! With 18 squeeze bottles of vibrant colors, this full set also includes a step-by-step guide. A great arts and crafts activity for a slumber party or a playdate!
Fujifilm Instax Lilac Mini 11 Instant Camera and Shutter Accessories Bundle
If your tween isn’t old enough for a camera phone but still wants to take pics, then this retro-inspired Polaroid camera is an excellent alternative. This instant camera also contains accessories, including a cute case and glitter photo album. We’re smitten with the sweet lilac shade!
DIY Journal Set
Encourage your pre-teen to express their feelings with this DIY journal set. I still look back on some of my middle school musics with fondness!
Wireless Bluetooth Karaoke Microphone
Does your tween love to sing (even just in the shower)? Then treat her to this karaoke mic that will allow her to release her inner Hannah Montana. My family owns this device, and it’s a hit!
Pretty Little Picnic Makeup Starter Set
For the record, we are absolutely not encouraging tweens to wear makeup! But if your daughter wants to experiment with beauty products for a special event or school play, then this starter set is a great kit for beginners.
Stony Clover Lane Stuff Small Pouch
Color Us obsessed with this Stony Clover Lane pouch! Your tween will love the simple message in rainbow writing. This accessories brand is all the rage with the younger generation, so you’ll earn some major points for this generous gift.
Looking for other gift ideas? Check out more picks below:
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