Fancy a *tiny* helping hand around the house this Christmas? If so, you’d better be quick. A toy version of the popular Dyson cordless stick vacuum has been selling out in retailers in recent weeks.
The Dyson Toy Cordless Vacuum, made by replica toy brand Casdon, has working suction, a removable debris drawer, handheld cleaning accessories, and it even sounds like the grown-up version too. So it could be ideal for kids who want to join in with the chores, and even better for adults that need a little help around the house (or a good distraction).
And, just like its full-sized counterpart, the £22 toy is proving a popular Christmas gift idea. Retailers such as Amazon, Littlewoods and Very are listing the replica as out of stock.
Don’t panic though. We’ve seen it come in and out of stock a few times, so you may still be able to get your hands on one. If you don’t have any luck, there are other Dyson toy models available, and toy versions of other popular brands, such as Numatic’s smiley-faced ‘Henry’ vacuum – we’ve picked out great alternatives below.
None of the toys have enough suction power to really make a difference to your weekly clean though, apart from keeping curious hands away from your pricey Dyson – and keeping little ones occupied as you clean. They can pick up the colourful beads supplied with the product, and the odd bit of stray fluff, but for real cleaning power make sure you pick one of our top five best vacuum cleaners.
Dyson cordless vacuum reviews – find out how the real thing fares in our tests and which models we recommend
Toy vacuum cleaners: what makes them so popular?
Kids can gain a lot from playing with these replica toys. Parenting expert Claire Halsey told us:
‘Children love to copy their parents for fun, taking pleasure in sharing an activity and identifying with their parent.’
‘Copying is a rich source of learning about their world and how things function through doing activities together, so using a play toaster to copy a parent making breakfast or trailing around the house with a mini vacuum has both play and learning value.’
We asked former toy vacuum owner, Freddy, aged seven, why he loves using his mini Henry vacuum. He said: ‘It’s fun because you can hoover up anything you like. So if the house needs cleaning, you could hoover it up and everything.’
Freddy’s mum, Lisa, told us: ‘Fred used to really enjoy playing with the Henry hoover. We loved it, too, as it was genuinely useful and could suck up some muck. Obviously, it’s not as powerful as a conventional vacuum, but every little helps. Besides, I saw it as good practice for when he was older and he did actually get pretty handy with our main vacuum.’
Toy versions of popular vacuum cleaners for kids
From Miele’s to Henry’s, we look at some of the best mini models on the market if you’re keen to treat a tiny person to a toy vacuum this Christmas. Most models are suitable for children aged three years and above.
Casdon Dyson Cordless Vacuum Toy, £22
Full-sized cordless vacuums have grown in popularity in the past few years, so it’s no surprise Casdon’s toy cordless vacuum has flown off the shelves as kids look to emulate their parent’s shiny new vacuum cleaners.
The cheapest Dyson cordless you can buy is usually the Dyson V7 Motorhead, which costs £220 more than the miniature. But is it worth it? Find out in our full Dyson V7 cordless review.
Casdon Dyson Toy Ball Vacuum Cleaner, £18
With its yellow ball and signature Dyson colours this toy vacuum cleaner really does look like the real thing.
Kids can use the twist and turn motion to easily slide the vacuum around the house, picking up small bits of paper and light debris – just like mum and dad!
Argos, Amazon and other big name retailers have this model in stock for around £18.
If you fancy getting the grown up version – take a look at the Dyson Light Ball Multi Floor review. Dyson claims it cleans better on carpets and hardfloors than any other vacuum cleaner, so together you and your child could be an unstoppable combination. But did our experts agree?
Casdon Numatic Little Henry or Hetty Toy Vacuums, £17
If you know a child who loves the smiley-faced Herny and Hetty vacuums made by Numatic, Casdon also makes miniature versions of these models. Little Henry and Hetty are the same colours (red for Henry and pink for Hetty), have the same cheery design and they even have a pretend plastic plug and a cord that you can reel in when you’ve finished your chores.
Just like the toy Dysons, they can pick up small bits of paper, debris and beads so little ones really feel like they are helping tidy up. Amazon is currently selling them for £17 each – and if you’re fast you could get them delivered before Christmas.
Numatic vacuums are long-running favourites in our annual vacuum cleaner reliability and customer satisfaction survey. They may not have changed much from the outside in recent years, but Henry has had some internal design changes, and there’s even a cordless Henry vacuum available now.
Do the latest models clean as well as bagless rivals? Read our Numatic Henry vacuum review to find out whether you and your little helper will have your work cut out.
Theo Klein 6841 ‘Miele’ Vacuum Cleaner Toy, £36
This mini Miele clone costs around £36 from Amazon and comes with flashing lights, realistic sounds and working suction.
But the best part has to be the detachable vacuum bag. Once the kids have hoovered up their room they can unclip the bottom of the vacuum, remove the cotton bag and empty the contents.
The toy cleaner is super compact so you shouldn’t worry too much about storing it either.
The same can be said for the grown-up version. You can store all the tools on the main unit of the Miele Compact C2 Cat & Dog PowerLine so they’re easy to reach, and the head and tube fit on either side of the body to keep everything tidy in the broom cupboard.
Christmas gift ideas for kids: more cool toy appliances
If vacuuming isn’t your kid’s thing, we’ve rounded up our favourite alternatives below:
Bosch Children’s Toy Iron, £14, Argos
This Bosch iron can be filled with water so when you push the steam button, water will spray out, adding a splash of realism to your children’s role play. All you need to add is a mini ironing board and some clothes that you don’t mind getting damp.
Need a new iron yourself? Check our steam iron reviews to see how Bosch irons compare to rival brands.
Theo Klein ‘Miele’ Toy Replica Microwave, £24, Debenhams
This Miele toy microwave could be the ideal addition to a little one’s playroom, especially if they like cooking. It has a timer with three settings, a ringing tone that sounds when the food is ‘ready’ and the turntable in the microwave actually rotates too. The box also includes pretend food to play with.
Battery reviews – we reveal the best batteries to keep toys going, and going, and going…
Theo Klein 6941 ‘Miele’ Washing Machine Toy, £40, Amazon
This toy takes things one step further, using real water to actually wash real material – albeit for dolls. It has four different sound functions; water in, wash, water out and spin and can be run with or without water.
The scaled-down Miele washing machine is made for kids that love role play and is the perfect addition to a play room with dolls that need looking after. You can buy it for £40 on Amazon, which is slightly pricier than other replicas on the market.
Full-sized Miele washing machines often have a high price too, but is this justified by superb cleaning results? Find out with our guide to Miele washing machines.
Wooden Toy Stand Mixer and Coffee Machine, both £12.50, John Lewis
If you like toys that require a little more imagination and have a traditional feel, these wooden kitchen gadget replicas from John Lewis might be your thing.
Ideal for budding baristas or baking beginners, you can build up a wooden kitchen bit by bit. Both the stand mixer and coffee machine come with little wooden accessories too, for more realistic play.
Role play can be tiring. If you’re in need of a real caffeine hit to keep up, check out our independent coffee machine reviews.
The Full Monty: Teamson Kids Urban Play Kitchen, £140, Amazon
If you’re going the extra mile, there are a number of replica kitchen sets available, though like this version they tend to be much pricier than individual gadgets.
This version comes complete with a fridge freezer that actually dispenses ice. Your kids can whip up dinner, unpack the shopping and even do the washing up.
Fancy a kitchen makeover, too? Follow our simple kitchen design ideas to help transform your existing space.
Are your kids really into slime? Make sure you read our guide to slimes that exceed safety limits for chemicals and keep an eye out for our tried-and-tested slimes – results are coming soon.