Let Toys Be Toys campaign is asking the toy and publishing industries to stop limiting children’s interests by promoting some toys and books as only suitable for girls, and others only for boys.

Find out more about the Let Toys Be Toys campaign.

Don't box us in! Image of boy and girl in pink and blue boxes.

Let’s shop outside the box this Christmas

Toy marketing can make choosing gifts by gender seem like a safe choice, but kids deserve better. This Christmas we’re encouraging shoppers to reject ‘toys for boys’ and ‘toys for girls’ and shop outside the pink and blue boxes. Read more…

Whilygig Toys: Lion

Arts & crafts: Let Toys Be Toys gift guide

If you’re looking for a gift for an arty child, and want to shop outside the pink and blue boxes of gender stereotypes this Christmas, check out our inclusive gift guide for fun, gender-neutral present ideas for boys and girls.  Read more…

Ladybird Favourite Fairy Tales for Girls, Favourite Stories for Boys

Ladybird Books – no more ‘girls’ or ‘boys’ books

Ladybird Books have confirmed they won’t be publishing any more ‘girls’ or ‘boys’ books, bringing the total of publishers who have said they will Let Books Be Books to seven.  Read more…

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Let Books Be Books – supporters

More publishers agree to Let Books Be Books

We’re really pleased that Dorling Kindersley, Miles Kelly Books and Chad Valley have all told us that they will not be publishing new titles labelled ‘boys’ or ‘girls’.

Read more…


­Give them back their surprises

After decades of Kinder Surprise eggs with fun toy surprises for everyone, in 2013 the Ferrero company launched pink and blue Kinder Surprise eggs. Jessica Holland explains why she felt strongly enough about this to launch a petition against them – but it seems Ferrero aren’t troubled by consumers’ concerns…

Sign Jessica’s petition on change.org: Ferrero stop making sexist Kinder Eggs

It’s been nearly a year now since I first saw, with huge disappointment and disgust that Ferrero had decided to start using gender stereotyping in their marketing campaign for the Kinder Egg.  The first time I saw the ridiculous blue / pink eggs on the shelf, my jaw dropped to the floor. Had they seriously chosen to do this? In 2014? > Read more…

Boy and girl on a merry-go-round

‘One of each’

From the freedom of the toddler years to learning what society expects – as parent of a boy and a girl Megan Perryman explains the biggest difference between her son and her daughter… how everyone else treats them.

So my family’s now complete. I have ‘one of each’. A pretty princess with a head full of sparkles, and a rough and tumble boy with dirty knees and a cheeky grin. The next few years will be full of princesses, ponies and fairies for her, and dinosaurs, trucks, and space ships for him. Those poor families whose second child was the same gender as their first. How disappointed they must be with their clone children with completely identical interests!

Except – let’s face it – that’s not quite how it works. Read more…


What do toys have to do with inequality?

This year, bloggers around the world are writing on the topic of inequality for Blog Action Day. Jess Day looks at how ‘boy’ and ‘girl’ toy marketing connects with the inequalities men and women face in adult life.

The UK gender pay gap stands at nearly 20%. Direct and indirect discrimination certainly haven’t gone away, but it’s widely acknowledged that much of the difference comes from the different choices men and women make, with women over-represented in low paid caring professions, and far more likely to work part time due to caring responsibilities. But how free are those choices? And what are the forces shaping them? Read more…

Picture books: girls and boys together

One of the many damaging messages shouted out by gendered marketing is that girls and boys engage in very different activities: play with different toys, read different books, do different sports, have different adventures. So, to pour water on that super-toxic message, our friends at Letterbox Library  have compiled some suggestions of picture books which will tell boys and girls the truth about themselves – that they are more alike than different and that they can all play in the same camp! Read more…

Igloo books - adventure stories for boys, classic stories for girls

How do we get more boys reading? (Clue: ‘boy books’ aren’t the answer.)

The Let Books Be Books campaign has attracted much media coverage and high profile support, but labelling books ‘for boys’ is sometimes defended as a useful tool for getting boys to read. Tricia Lowther argues that gendering reading doesn’t help literacy, and may even be harming boys’ chances.

Read more…