Sunday, December 12, 2021

Sunday Surprise: Baby Born Surprise Mini Babies (and more)!

Happy Sunday!  I have officially lived in New Jersey for one year today!  And I'm so much happier than I was on this day last year.  Last year I drove seven hours from Maine in my tiny Prius packed full with all of the remaining belongings from our old house, plus four stressed-out dogs and two small cats.  It was a long journey!  But here I am sitting on my couch typing up a surprise review, which, if you'd asked me a year ago, is not something I ever thought would happen again.

I really like surprise toys, and I especially like surprise mini babies.  I don't collect baby dolls in general anymore, so I'm not sure why babies are so appealing to me in a small scale--and especially with a surprise theme.  Maybe it's because babies bring several surprises with them in real life?  Or perhaps it's just because mini babies are great little toys, either on their own as something to nurture, or as a fun new addition to a doll family.

In any case, I've reviewed a few different surprise babies over the years, including Zapf Jolly Dollies and the unrivaled Cabbage Patch Babyland Mini Kids--which are still probably my favorite surprise mini of all.  But I wanted to see what kinds of mini babies are available on the market today, so I focused on this theme during one of my Target missions.  The first surprise baby toy I found was this one, by Zapf and MGA Entertainment:

Baby Born Surprise Mini Babies, $9.99.

The $10 price on this set seems high, especially when compared to the little Woodzeez crib sets that are only $3.  But I like Zapf babies, and the packaging is very appealing.  

Everything is wrapped up like a little present.

One of my critiques of the Li'l Woodzeez crib sets was that they didn't come with a cozy blanket for the baby animals to snuggle under.  This set comes with a cheery yellow blanket that's used as part of the packaging.  I'm already impressed!

It's possible to get either two or three babies in these sets:

Triplets would be fun!
The package opens from the bottom, where you can see all of the copyrights and choking hazard warnings:

Underneath the cardboard, there's a plastic strap that holds the blanket bundle in the crib:

A small plastic shell lifts out of the crib once the strap has been cut:

The blanket bundle falls easily out of the plastic shell:

There's a plastic tie holding the bow onto the bundle, but that was easy to snip off:

I opened up the blanket, thinking that my surprise would be over immediately, but instead I found this!

It's two little babies (not three) inside of a double bunting shaped like a popcorn carton!

And the babies' faces are covered with pink paper, so I still didn't know what they look like:

The bunting is really cute.  I hadn't read the packaging very carefully, so I didn't even know that the set came with this accessory.

The bunting has a plush fleece backing that looks really comfy, and two little compartments inside to hold each of the babies:

There's also a plastic heart at the top of the bunting, which I suppose could be used to clip the babies to a backpack or maybe hang them from the Christmas tree?

But let's see what the babies look like!  Here's the first one:

It's nice that it's paper, not plastic, that conceals this baby's face (especially for the baby).

I unwrapped slowly, revealing a bit of blond molded hair...

And then I got impatient and unwrapped the whole thing!  It's a little popcorn baby!

She's very sweet, with large purple eyes, blonde ponytail buns on either side of her head, and a red and white striped romper that's painted onto her body:

The molded details in the hair are nice, and there are no obvious paint defects.

This little one has five points of articulation (neck, shoulders, hips):

Her shoulders and hips have simple rotational movement, but her neck is ball-jointed, so she can look up, down, and all around:

I love her chubby, highly-detailed little arms and legs:

Ok, let's see who's next!

I actually had a pretty good idea who was inside that wrapper at this point, because I seem to have gotten one of the two sets that are advertised on the packaging:

That's a bit of a bummer because the surprise is gone, but I love that balloon animal headband and wanted to see how it translated to the actual doll.

Here's the doll:

This one (not sure if they're a boy or a girl?) is SO sweet.  Look at those side-glancing green eyes!

The molded balloon hat is great, but my doll has a few small paint smudges on the lip and cheek area:

The head of the balloon dog is a separate piece of vinyl that inserts into the side of the baby's head:

Again, the molded detail is great, and the colors are bright and--for the most part--well-painted.

The two babies fit side-by-side in their purple crib:

And they can cozy up under their adorable little blanket!

The crib is just a bit bigger than the ones that come with the surprise Li'l Woodzeez sets:

The two babies fit nicely back into their bunting, although there's nothing to hold them in place, so I wouldn't recommend clipping this set to a backpack or jacket.

The babies are two inches tall, so they're too small to work as toddlers for Lina:

They're approximately newborn size in the 1:6 scale.

Each mini baby set comes with a collector's sheet that has illustrations of all the other possibilities:

I got the Popcorn Twins:

There are also Swirly Twins:

Candy Fluff Triplets:

Jelly Triplets (these were displayed on the packaging, too):

The Milk Twins (who I really love!):

Look at their hats!
The Cheddar Twins:

I love this pair, too!
The Seashell Triplets:

Ok, these are getting cuter and cuter.
The Beach Party Twins:

A mermaid!
And the Starfish Twin set, which includes a clownfish mermaid and a flamingo:

Definitely my favorite.
The back side of the collector's sheet has a birth certificate for a child to fill out, a key to determine the babies' birth month (November for my twins), and a coloring activity:

Apparently the cribs are stackable.
I love these two.  They're extremely cute and well-articulated for such a tiny toy.  The three accessories (bunting, crib, and blanket) add a lot of play value and are easy to manage.

I was so captivated by the Surprise Mini Babies that I went online and ordered another Baby Born surprise set.  This one is from a collection called Sparkle Fly Babies:

Baby Born Sparkle Fly Babies, $10.99
These toys cost a dollar more than the Surprise Mini Babies.

Apparently this set includes "10+ surprises."  Let's keep track.

The packaging is in the shape of an egg, and has a lightweight slotted plastic shell all around the outside.

Underneath the plastic shell, there's a purple tulle drawstring bag:

I'm currently using this bag to store all of the babies from this review!

Inside the bag, there's a purple plastic egg:

This egg seems superfluous...and also a little creepy for some reason.  It looks like a bug larva to me:

Oh--I actually just picked up on this.  I can be so slow sometimes.  It's supposed to look like a bug larva--or rather a chrysalis, since all of the babies are butterfly-themed!  Duh.

The purple chrysalis opens to reveal a collector's sheet and a hint of pink plastic:

Underneath the collector's sheet I can see the baby!

The baby comes wrapped inside its own butterfly wings, so I can't see any of the features yet.  There's also a pink plastic bag with some kind of accessory:

I untied the shimmering ribbon that was keeping the wings wrapped up:

This ribbon is sewn onto the wings and can be used again and again:

I slowly unwrapped the vinyl wings...

Looking a lot like a monarch so far...
Ta da!  It's a beautiful butterfly baby!

The type of butterfly that you get is clearly the biggest (and the first) of the 10+ surprises.  So which butterfly did we get?  The coloring definitely reminds me of a monarch:

Monarch Butterfly Danaus plexippus on Milkweed Hybrid 2800px
Monarch butterfly.
 It could also be a viceroy:

Viceroy Butterfly (26402804837)
Viceroy butterfly.
It's very hard to tell the viceroy and the monarch apart.  That's on purpose.  The two species exhibit Müllerian mimicry, meaning that they evolved to resemble one another in order to amplify their protective signaling.  Both butterflies taste bad to predators, and so together they strengthen the connection between this particular pattern of orange and black and an icky taste--making predators more likely to stay away.

The doll also looks a bit like an American lady butterfly:

American Lady (2677085537)
Probably also tastes bad.
Or maybe the doll isn't meant to be any specific kind of butterfly, which is ok, too.

The doll attaches to the wings with a small strip of velcro:

This little one has orange-blonde hair and an adorable orange polka dot romper with tulle sleeves:

There are black sparkly antennae and a gold sparkly crown permanently attached to the top of the head:

My doll has a bit of scuffing in the ridges of the painted hair:

The orange romper is removable, and underneath I found our second surprise!

It's a boy!
The shape of this baby's mouth coupled with the surprise under his diaper reveal that this is a drink and wet doll.  That feature was a surprise to me, but I don't think it counts as one of the official ten surprises.

The molded detail on this fellow is good, with health baby fat rolls and even butt dimples!

My doll has some orange staining on his body, though.  It occurs mostly around the joints, like this:

I suppose the staining comes from the bright outfit, which is a shame.

This baby has five points of articulation, but unlike the Popcorn Twins, he only has simple rotational movement in his neck:

The baby looks like he's sleeping, but I recognized this style of sleeping eyes from when I reviewed the Bratz Li'l Angelz.  I wish I still had one of those Angelz around for comparison!

Anyway, there's skin-colored paint covering the eyes, and this can be easily removed with a wet Q-tip.

The third surprise is that our baby has...

Big brown eyes!
I like this guy so much better with the open eyes.  The closed eyes were a little freaky.

I think that whatever is in this bag is the last surprise:

I cut the bag open...

And found a diaper and a blue bottle:

I'm not sure how to count the bottle and the diaper in terms of our surprise tally, but I guess since both of them were in the same bag, they count as one surprise: the presence of a bottle and diaper.  So that's four surprises so far.

The blue bottle holds water, and can be used to feed the baby.  I tried this out for fun.  It takes a lot of bottles before the water starts to dribble out down below, though.  The baby's tummy can't be squeezed or anything to expedite this process.  Furthermore, I had a really hard time getting all of the water out of the baby once I'd finished testing the bottle.

The diaper appears to have a pattern on it, but I can't see it very well:

I read the instructions and discovered that if this diaper gets wet, it will reveal a secret pattern.  By my count, this is the fifth surprise.

So what are the other five surprises?  I'm confused.

Let's see if the collector's sheet can help:

Honestly, I can't even tell which doll I got from looking at this sheet!  At first the Monarch Prince looked right:

But he has brown hair, not orange hair.  

This monarch has orange hair:

But also has a silver crown, gold antennae, and green eyes.  Hm.

So maybe the hair color is variable among these dolls? Maybe the crowns and antennae are variable? Probably the hair color.

This photo from Amazon shows some (all?) of the actual dolls that are possible:

This clearly shows the doll I got, and none of the others look like monarchs.  So I'm still not sure if there were some surprises in this doll's appearance that I didn't count.

There were a few more surprises hidden on the back of the collector's sheet:

First of all, we can determine the baby's month of birth by looking at the diaper pattern:

I wasn't originally going to get the diaper wet, but I relented at this point so that we can figure out all of the surprises:

The pattern isn't super-clear (and it disappears again when the diaper is dry), but it looks like the "Lilipads" pattern, which means a September birthday.  My favorite number is six, so let's say the birthday is September 6th.  That's surprise number six.

We can also determine the baby's name (yay!) by following the little chart on the left:

Because he has a blue bottle and is wearing a crown, his name is Apollo!  Love it.  This section also lists all of the star signs, so we can figure out that Apollo is a Virgo.

So that's two more surprises, which brings us to a total of eight--nine if we include something about the hair.  That's close to ten, but it isn't "10+" by my count.

Regardless of the number of surprises, Apollo is really cute, and the wings are impressive!

Apollo is a lot bigger than the Popcorn Twins.  He's just over four inches tall, and barely fits on Lina's lap!

Here's Apollo with the Popcorn Twins:

I like the scale and the personality in the little Popcorn babies so much.  Their highly-maneuverable heads are really expressive, and I like that they don't have "bottle mouth" like Apollo.  I also think that the little dolls' accessories are more practical than Apollo's wings.  The wings look very dramatic, but their velcro attachment isn't very strong, and they tend to look floppy.  They seem better designed for show than active play.

I noticed that my Target store carries a different series of the larger surprise babies, so I wanted to give this scale another chance:

Baby Born Animal Babies, $12.99.
The name of this collection is Animal Babies, and there's an adorable lamb baby on the tag:

8+ surprises would be more accurate.
This doll cost $12.99, so two dollars more than Apollo and three dolls more than the Surprise Mini Babies.

The outer packaging on this set is a soft pink bag printed with a bunny face and tied at the top to look like bunny ears:

That's very clever!
The ears untie to reveal a green plastic carton:

The carton is shaped like half of an egg and has molded decorations on the bottom:

The lid pulls off to reveal another collector's sheet:

And underneath that...

One of the cutest things I've ever seen!
It's a little sleeping chicken baby!  And another pink plastic bag.

Here's the baby:

This baby is so cute I can still hardly stand it.

The fuzziness of the yellow fabric obscures the chicken features on the hood, but it hardly matters.  This is clearly a chicken suit.  And those little chicken feet socks?  Oh, man.

The hood of this outfit pulls down to reveal short molded red hair that's spiked up along the center of the baby's head:

There's a velcro seam that runs all of the way down the back of this outfit--from the tip of the hood down to the tail feathers:

The suit is surprisingly easy to take off and put on again.


We have another little boy!  I think I'll name him Chester.  Chester the chicken baby.

Chester's eyes are closed with paint, and he also has dark spot right in the middle of his nose.  I removed the eye paint and also tried to remove the spot on the nose.  It came off pretty easily.

This little cutie has side-glancing brown eyes.  They're a bit darker than Apollo's brown eyes:

Now that Chester is awake, I put him back into his adorable chicken suit:

Cuteness overload.
Together, we decided to see what was inside the pink plastic bag:

I found another white diaper and blue bottle:

This diaper has a hidden chick pattern:

Oh, wait--those are ducks.
The collector's sheet has illustrations of all the other animal characters.  Can you guess which one I really want?

The unicorn!

Some stores have real-life photos of the dolls in this collection, and so I found a photo of the actual unicorn character:

Really cute, but not as cute as the illustration, and maybe not as cute as the chicken, either!  I'm pretty happy with Chester.

The back of the collector's sheet has a birth certificate and a guide to determining the birth month based on the diaper pattern (October).  There's no secret way to determine this baby's name.

There's also a spot-the-difference activity at the bottom of the sheet.  I love this kind of thing:

Here are my two little boys together in their stiff, oversized diapers:

And in their full outfits:

I'm glad that I took a chance on a second character in this scale, because I think Chester is adorable.  His costume is ridiculously cute, and his head mold is more versatile than Apollo's since it doesn't have the antennae and crown attachments.

As much as I like my chicken baby, his $13 price tag is pretty steep for a tiny doll with very few accessories.  I was curious to see how this compared to other options on the market.

Target also stocks a line of Perfectly Cute mini babies by Jakks Pacific.  These cost $5.99, so about half as much as the Baby Born toys:

Perfectly Cute surprise baby, $5.99.
The packaging is nowhere near as appealing as it is on the Baby Born products.  It's just a plain cardboard box with photos of the dolls levitated against a pink patterned background.

The back of the box doesn't brag about how many surprises are inside, but rather gives a straight-forward rundown of the different options in each category:

We'll get one of the eight babies, a blue or a pink baby carrier, a blanket, lovey, or teddy bear, and a bottle or sippy cup.

The side of the box is even more blunt.  The set comes with one doll, one carrier, and two accessories.  Fair enough:

The cardboard box opens at the top to reveal another cardboard container inside:

I'm not exactly sure what the purpose of this cardboard is, but probably it keeps the items from banging around in the box too much:

The carrier slid out of the cardboard sleeve to reveal the baby and accessories in a small plastic bag:

The carrier is seafoam green, not blue.  I feel like everything is seafoam green these days!  Brianna's clothing was accented with seafoam green, and all of the Creatable World kids have that color in their packaging.  I guess it's trendy.

By flipping over the plastic bag, I could already see that I'd gotten a rainbow blanket and a purple sippy cup:

Here's everything that was in the box:

The blanket is much smaller than the one that came with the Popcorn Twins, and the sippy cup is huge and can't actually hold water:

Here's the little baby:

The outfit is painted onto the doll and includes a white tee shirt and a yellow diaper.  There are little pink bows in the baby's hair, which suggests a girl, but there's no obvious gender reveal moment.  I appreciate the subtlety.  A child could decide if this is a boy or a girl for themselves.

I'm going to say she's a little girl named Gina.

Here she is from the back:

She has a cute expression on her face, and the screening is nicely done for the most part:


My doll has an area of rubbed paint on her left cheek, though:

Gina has five points of simple rotational articulation (neck, shoulder, hips):

She fits nicely into her carrier, and can be tucked in under her blanket:

Gina is about the same size as Chester:

Perfectly Cute baby and Baby Born Animal Babies baby.
These are both cute little dolls.  I didn't expect Gina to be comparable to the Baby Born kids, especially because of the underwhelming representation of the dolls on the box.  But I find that I like her.  I even prefer her facial features to those on the larger Baby Born dolls.  The BabyBorn eyes are so widely-spaced!

I think Chester and Apollo would make great bath toys, with their ability to drink and pee, but little Chester was still leaking water out of his mouth when I took that picture, above, which was days after I'd fed him.  What happens to these drinking babies over time if the water never fully dries or leaks out?  It might actually be a bonus that Gina's sippy cup doesn't hold water!

I also appreciate the simplicity of Gina's painted clothing, especially for a young child who might be frustrated by the Baby Born dolls' small outfits.

Here's one more picture of Gina, just for BlackKitty:

A Perfectly Cute doll wearing a Baby Born chicken outfit.
The one other product at Target that I thought was worthy of comparison in this review is a baby from the Skipper Babysitters Inc collection:

Skipper Babysitters Inc. baby doll, $2.99.
This is not a surprise doll, of course, but it costs $2.99.  Three bucks.  Very few other things in the Target toy aisles cost $2.99!  As far as I can tell, these little ones are only available in stores--not online.

The babies are really cute, too.  They each come with a soft vinyl animal outfit.  I found three different varieties in my store and bought all of them (because of course I did).

This baby has a medium skin tone and a little puppy suit:

And this one has a dark skin tone with a purple lamb outfit:

I opened the blue-eyed bunny for this review:

I used a baby name website to search for a good sibling name for Skipper and Chelsea, and it suggested Marigold, which I think is nice.  So this baby is named Marigold.

Her face mold is cute, and she has wide, bright, nicely-screened eyes:

Her mouth paint doesn't match her molded lips, though.  The molded shape is delicate and nuanced, but the paint is a basic fruit-slice smile:

I need to repaint that mouth.
She's made out of hard plastic and is quite detailed for her tiny size!  I love how her fingers are positioned.

Her bunny suit has a big slit down the back so that it can be removed:

It's not that hard to manipulate this outfit, although it's easier to take off than it is to put back on.

Underneath, Marigold is wearing a fuzzy pink diaper:

Maybe there's a small surprise element to these dolls? I was assuming Marigold was a girl because of her neon pink bunny suit, but I have no idea if the characters are specifically gendered.  Maybe the diaper just matches the outfit?

Anyway, Marigold has a lot of nice molded detail, but her side seam is quite visible:

The diaper has a velcro closure on one side and is fully removable:

It's easier to use than a Li'l Woodzeez diaper.

The baby has a simple torso with only four points of articulation (the head does not move, unfortunately):

She has molded markings on all of her limbs to designate whether it's the right or left side, and there are some white painted letters and numbers on her back:

I love the rolls on the backs of her legs!
And of course her scale works very nicely with Lina:

She's just a bit bigger than the Popcorn Twins:

And quite a bit smaller than Chester and Gina:

From left: Blume Baby Pop, Baby Born Surprise Mini Baby, Skipper Babysitters Inc baby, Perfectly Cute baby, and Baby Born Animal Baby (wearing the wrong outfit--sorry!)
I've included one other doll in this lineup.  It's a Blume Baby Pop surprise doll who didn't make the cut for this review.  I'll do a short "outtake" review of that line over on Patreon tomorrow.

Marigold can snuggle into the Popcorn Twins' bed:

But she's a bit too small for Gina's carrier (although this might not bother kids at all):

I wish that Marigold had neck articulation, and I wish her mouth and been painted more carefully, but otherwise she's great.  I think she's the best purchase out of all five of the products in this review.  She's cute, has realistic features, nice detail, and decent articulation.  She does not have a surprise element or any accessories, but there aren't many other toys that are this rewarding for such a low price.

Of the higher-priced dolls, my recommendation is the Surprise Mini Babies sets, like my Popcorn Twins:

The little tyke with the balloon animal hat is my favorite doll in this review.  I get such a kick out of those big eyes and that quizzical expression!

My only complaint with this duo is that they have paint smudges on their faces.  The dolls have wonderful charisma and great articulation.  The ball-jointed necks allow them to look all around and show off their personalities to great effect.  In addition, all three of the accessories played a role in the packaging and are great for enhancing play. 

My favorites.
Bottom line?  All of these mini babies are cute, and each one has something that impresses me. With the Popcorn Twins, I love their expressive faces, flexible heads, and useful accessories.  With the larger Baby Born surprise dolls, I was won over by Chester's crazy-adorable chicken suit.  I also think that both Apollo and Chester would make excellent bath toys.  Gina stands out because of her plastic-free packaging and by how much cuteness you get for a relatively low price.  And Marigold wins it all by being the cheapest and the most versatile of the entire group, even though there are no surprise elements in her packaging or appearance.

It might not be fair to compare Marigold to the other surprise babies, but it's an interesting way of measuring the value of a surprise theme on the current market.  If Mattel had packaged the Skipper Babysitters babies in a blind box so that you didn't know which of the three characters you'd get, and then included five individually-wrapped little plastic accessories, they could have put the dolls into bigger, flashier boxes and advertised them as surprise dolls.  They probably could have gotten away with a $9.99 price tag, too.  But I'm glad they didn't.  I was surprised and delighted to find these babies in Target just as they were, in their miniature blister packs, displaying everything clearly so that I could inspect for defects and get exactly the ones I wanted.  And I walked out of there with three babies for under $10.

I'm a little worried that surprise themes are overused these days, but I can totally see why people put value on the mystery element.  At this time of year, it's easy to get caught up in the irresistible pull of a wrapped gift.  What could be more tantalizing?  Even as an adult, I find myself walking through huge Christmas displays, wanting to unwrap all of the decorative presents just to be sure there's nothing inside.  But for most kids, the joy of receiving a wrapped mystery gift is confined to only one or two times during the year.  Blind box toys like the Baby Born sets offer kids (and adults like me!) the chance to experience a bit of this present-unwrapping thrill any day of the week.  And that's worth something.

From left: Baby Born Mini Surprise baby, Skipper Babysitters Inc baby, Perfectly Cute baby, and Baby Born Animal Babies baby.


  1. What a treat to refresh the site and find a new Sunday Surprise today!

    I love that you compared so many different surprise babies. I don't think any of them will replace my favorite 2000s Barbie babies, but its nice to have cheaper and easier to find options. The Popcorn twins are ridiculously cute.

    1. Oh, I'll have to search for pics of the 2000s Barbie babies! I'm really smitten with these new ones. And I agree about the Popcorn Twins. I'd love to have another one of those sets. That little balloon-head baby cracks me up. ;)

    2. The 2000s babies are amazing! I'm specifically obsessed with the jointed Kristy babies and the newborn mold from Happy Family Midge. Happy Family also had some interesting toddlers but I don't like them quite as much as the babies.

      They go really well with my Liv dolls!

  2. Really liked your comparison between surprise vs. non-surprise toys price-wise and quality-wise. I think it's very interesting how, with surprise toys, it's not just the toy itself that is bought, but also the feeling of opening it and finding a surprise. And making a quantitative price for that seems to vary a lot.

    I've had quite a negative view on surprise toys lately, but the quality of some of the ones you've been reviewing have been a pleasant surprise (lol). It's nice to know that some of these surprise toys have thought and care put into them to make them good toys instead of just relying on the surprise factor to sell them. -L

    1. I feel the same way, L. I find the recent surprise boom a bit off-putting. It used to be relatively hard to find a surprise-themed toy, other than the smaller (inexpensive) blind box assortments. And in older surprise dolls, the surprise was usually secondary to the doll. You'd buy the doll because you liked it, and then maybe you'd get an extra sticker or bracelet as a bonus--or you'd find out the doll's name or birthday or something. But you're right that these babies have value beyond their surprise, which is a delight.

      What I didn't mention in the review is that I also like surprise toys where I can't pick a strong favorite. Then I'm not disappointed...and I'm not tempted to buy more just to get the "right" one. A surprise toy with an option that's clearly better than the rest (maybe even advertised as such) is setting kids up for a *bad* surprise, which is the worst. The Baby Born Surprise Mini Babies probably do the best in this department in my opinion, because I find all of the themes adorable.

      It's a fascinating trend with lots to ponder.

  3. I'm not the least bit interested in baby dolls, but I really enjoyed your review just the same. Thanks!

  4. Well you know from my introduction that I LOVE baby dolls. And Baby Born is very well known for theirs. I liked all of the dolls in different ways, I don't think I would have been unhappy with any of them. Its hard to find carriers for dolls that small and Gina comes with one that work would for a few sizes! My complaint about Gina is they molded her in a way that it looks like she needs a diaper change but you can't do anything because its painted on. lol The oversize diapers on the Baby Born are pretty silly when the one on Marigold is tinier and actually fits correctly. A company with their experience should have done a better job on that aspect. On the whole though, I enjoyed opening these with you.

    1. Thank you, Michelle! I really like how you compared the diapers. It's an interesting point of contrast that I didn't really focus on. But changing diapers is a big part of baby play for kids, and so I agree that Gina's molded diaper comes up short! Not only does it look a bit full, but maybe yellow wasn't the best color choice? ;) But the Baby Born diapers are ridiculous. I'd planned to just set them aside. They're stiff and ill-fitting. But for kids who love the drink-and-wet feature, the diaper is critical! Mattel is knocking it out of the park lately, on all fronts. That diaper, exactly like you said, fits well and is easy to use. Putting the velcro on only one side makes it even easier to use than the Woodzeez diapers. Your analysis is spot-on.

  5. Congrats on getting two little boys! All of my Zapf babies were girls.

    1. I was pretty excited! I love little boys, and they feel rare with surprise sets. :)

  6. Thank-you for the excellent review.:-) I'm happy there are more options for those who want miniature babies than the Lol Surprise ones. My favorites were the Baby Born and Skipper's Babysitter baby in great part because they're playscale and I'm not sure a baby doll that small can be a standalone collection or toy for very long unless it's the baby of other dolls in the toybox. I must say though that the Baby Born Animal babies are very cute, you were so lucky getting two redheads.

    I look forward to seeing more of that Blume baby, that's some next level swaddling.:-D

    1. Next level swaddling is right, lol! Those little "outfits" are tight-fitting. The Blume babies sleep well, I think. ;)

      I loved having a collection of little babies in the Skipper (1:6) scale when I was a kid. I didn't really care if they matched each other--or even if they were a perfect match for their parents, but it was such a fun addition to any doll game. That definitely influenced my review. Even for kids who don't have Barbies, there are a lot of other dolls who can adopt 1:6 babies like Marigold. She's a little treasure--as are her little friends.

  7. The popcorn twins! I think the boys have hats of some sort with those tiny Baby Born minis. Careful if you do decide to repaint the skipper babies mouth, when I tried it, it made the plastic around the mouth dull, almost like a matte finish? Granted I used acetone which may have been too strong (^_^;) might look fine with a full repaint though.
    Also, I was beyond happy to see you start posting again! This is my favorite toy blog!
    Would you ever consider reviewing any DBS Dream Fairy dolls?

    1. If the head is hard plastic, acetone will dissolve it. The way to remove paint on hard plastic toys is by sanding with a fine grit (like a nail buffer). Sorry to barge on Emily's post but I do quite a few repaints and mods.

    2. Ah okay, thank you! I'm just getting into customizing myself. Appreciate it!

    3. I probably would have tried acetone, since it works well on My Twinns, so I'm happy to have this advice, too! Thank you. Marigold definitely needs a repaint.

      As for the DBS Dream Fairy dolls, I would look into a review of the tiny ones, but did you mean one of the big $600 ones? I don't know a lot about them! Tell me more! ;D

    4. I haven't seen those! I meant the 60cm and 30cm ones. They have some cute outfits, they're mechanically jointed, and very customizable! They also have an anime styled 40cm that recently came out. Also, BlackKitty, I read your review for the Xinyi doll over and over back when I ordered my own, she's one of my favorites!

  8. I'm so glad you resurrected the Sunday Surprise! I don't like getting surprise dolls, but I like your posts about them. I agree that the babysitters babies are the best deal, and they would be really easy to wrap at home for a surprise gift. The others are nice if you plan on getting just one from a series and being happy with anything you get. It could also be a good opportunity to teach kids who are getting a younger sibling that this is how real babies work: you can't really choose its sex, birthday or features. Some are born with little defects.
    I thought the butterfly babies would make a fun addition to a fairy family, until I realised I've never seen male fairy dolls. I was considering the idea of parthenogenesis among fairies, until you revealed that Apollo is a boy. So they have infant males, but they don't reach adulthood. The enigma is still unsolved!
    Anyway, other than the missed opportunity to see Gina in the chicken suit, it was a very interesting review! Thank you!

    1. Well, this fairy conundrum will surely be dinner conversation tonight! I hadn't considered parthenogenesis, but it certainly fits. It'd be sad if the boys never reached adulthood. Maybe they become like worker bees? But no--those are females. Ok, so maybe they get absorbed by the females like an angler fish?? Or maybe they just get demoted to Leprechauns when they reach a certain age. Leprechauns are all male, as I recall.

      In any case, I'm embarrassed to have omitted Gina in the chicken suit. That has been corrected. Thank you! ;D

    2. Ooh! She looks adorable, thank you! That chicken suit immediately improves any doll, especially the already cute Gina.

  9. *sigh* and just when I was thinking I needed to put toy purchases on hiatus for a bit that monarch baby did me in. I raised a bunch of monarchs this past summer, so as soon as I saw those orange wings I was done.

    1. Katrina! Nooo! It's a surprise baby. You won't know if you got the monarch or not! That could get expensive. I'll send you Apollo. I insist. I'll reply through Patreon eventually, but the next 48 hours are nuts, so please have patience with me. :)

  10. Thank you for this post. I don't collect baby dolls, but I secretly adore these tiny suprises. Got the Baby Born Surprise Mini Baby for my daughter and she got the Berry Twins. So adorable <3

  11. Yay tiny babies! I've loved mini baby dolls since I was a kid and read the book "The Rainbabies" by Laura Melmed (highly recommend! It's very cute). My favorite babies from today are the popcorn babies, I just wish it wasn't a surprise! I'm too paranoid to buy multiple surprise toys out of fear I'll get the same one multiple times.

  12. I‘m also not a fan of baby dolls at all (I always prefered „grown up“ dolls and the Ruby Red Fashion Friend dolls are the youngest looking dolls I really like), but the butterfly and the chicken are absolutely adorable 😍

  13. Very cute review. I think I like Chester the best, but I'm not sure he's a chicken. Isn't he a duckling - the collector sheet says golden duckie and the chicken is in a white suit?

    1. Replying to my comment to test if this is working.

  14. the prize for cutest overall is Gina in the chicken suit. oh man. so adorable, I can't even.

    *glances at prior comment* ah, and the spambots have already descended! my my. >_<

  15. I can't get over Chester, he is RIDICULOUSLY adorable!!

  16. I have an issue with your blog pictures, they are grey blanks, how can this problem be solved?

    1. Oh, good question. I haven't heard anything like that before. Are you on a phone or a computer? Maybe if you refresh your browser (clear history?). I'll ask my tech-savvy husband when he gets home. Sorry you're having trouble!

  17. Now, I was thinking that the Perfectly Cute baby's eyes were too close together. So everyone see it differently, I suppose. (Depending on where their eyes are placed?)
    Whatever happened to the old Baby Born mini dolls? They looked just like the big ones, which I never though were that cute, but they had the cutest accessories. Ivy had a ton of those sets. I got to enjoy them when I cleaned her bedroom after she went to college a few years ago. I have one myself because I couldn't resist. I could resist these guys.
    I never cared for painted on clothing on dolls, but it seems to make a huge difference in price. Why does a tiny piece of plastic need to cost so much?!

  18. I was very confused at that one Barbie baby, wondering why it was in a rotisserie chicken costume, until you explained it was a puppy.

  19. I really appreciate the activity sheets the Baby Born dolls all come with. It's an easy way to extend the surprises and provide extra entertainment.

    The Barbie babies are really cute, and I love how thought-out the packaging is on the twins. So many surprise products create a ton of waste.

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