This post was updated on February 8, 2020 with fresh links and fresh ideas!
I about jumped for joy when I got an email from my daughter’s preschool director, asking for candy-free Valentine’s for my daughter’s class. We choose to not eat a lot of sugar and candy in our home, and it makes me so happy to be around people who do the same. It’s hard having to explain why we can’t indulge at a friend’s party or why we don’t want to eat that lollipop filled with red dye and yellow dye #7. So we are alllllll about candyffree Valentine’s celebrations!
I’ve pulled together my top 10 EASY substitutes for candy for a child’s classroom friends for Valentine’s Day. These can be packaged up in bags like these:
For the unicorn obsessed:
We got these ADORABLE unicorn stamps for Harper’s class last year, and they were a big hit with the girls and boys in her preschool class. She still uses them a year later! These unicorn slap bracelets are also super trendy for a little older kids. Or how about these traditional Valentine’s card with a “magical charm” for each one? Adorbs!!
One of my favorite Galentines and BFFs has an at-home printable available for download that is truly one of the cutest things I’ve seen:
For the kids with the big personality:
Emoji toys are always fun, especially if your child can pick and choose which toy goes to which friend. My daughter’s school is NOT personalized, and I know she wouldn’t be too happy if a “heart eyes” made it to the wrong kid. Hah! These bright and flashy rings are a great way to stand out and everyone loves the sticky hands.
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For the sweet, traditional type:
If your child likes to play it safe and not make a huge statement, these Valentine’s Day themed pencils (or this set also) are a great touch, along with the heart-shaped erasers.
For the Valentine-Obsessed:
These V-day themed silicon bracelets are adorable and at a great price if you need to buy for a large group. If you have a reader on your hand, she’ll love gifting these Valentine’s magnetic bookmarks. And a quirky choice but will probably get some laughs: Valentine’s Rubber Duckies.
For the Trendy Valentine:
Can kids ever have enough squishies?! This is a great set with small-sized squishies that do not have a scent (and are therefor less toxic). Mini Hatchimals are always a crowd favorite, and this neon bouncing putty is sure to be a big hit!
I hope that helps spark some ideas on what to give for a Candy-less Valentine’s Day. I’d love to hear what you’re doing for your kids — share in the comments below.