toys and entertainment

The best black and white toys for newborns

Our top picks of black and white toys for newborns

Top 5 colouring toys and sets

Our favourite black and white toys for newborns around now

Why buy them?

Newborn babies can see very little for the first few weeks. To begin with, the highly contrasting colour combinations of black and white rather than paler, pastel and even primary colours are easier for them to focus on. So toys with black and white patterns will stimulate them visually and help their developing sight, as they’ll be able to pick out shapes and patterns much more easily.

What to spend

You can buy a range of high contrast black and white patterned items, including items such as baby gyms and mats, but the majority of toys available are smaller items, such as books and mobiles, and often don’t cost more than £20.

What to look for

These toys come in lots of different forms, but look for simple graphic prints and patterns in black and white, sometimes with bright contrasting colours added too. Anything that can be hung up is a good idea, so newborns can gaze at it as they lie in their pram or cot.

Babys Very First Cloth Book Faces 250Baby’s Very First Cloth Book, £5.99, by Jo Lodge

Faces fascinate all babies, so this is the perfect first book for them. There are several pages of high contrast black and white illustrations, plus a mirror so baby can discover their own face, and also a handy tag so the book can be hung on a pram or cot.

Baby Einstein pyramid 250Pyramid toy, £6.99, Baby Einstein

Mixing black and white with vivid primary colours to encourage focus, this pyramid-shaped hanging toy has lots of interesting features to stimulate little ones. Each detachable toy has a different feature including a rattle, a teether and a clacker, and there’s also a large baby safe mirror for baby to enjoy.

Wee gallery art cards 250Art Cards for baby, £12, Wee Gallery

These cards are deceptively simple way to stimulate a newborn’s developing eyesight, encouraging them to focus on a range of simple black and white line drawings that parents can place near them. There are six cards in a pack, each made from laminated card with soft, rounded corners that are safe for babies to handle.

Mind-Shapes Multi-Sensory Soft Activity Shape Set 250Mind Shapes, £22, Manhattan Toy Company

This set includes three soft sculpted shapes all with different textures for stimulating young babies. There’s a ball, pyramid and cube with crinkly paper, a rattle, and chiming sounds for children to discover. The graphic images of faces, dots and checks are ideal for stimulating a newborn’s developing eyesight.

Flensted Mobiles Penguins on Parade Hanging Mobile 250Penguin Mobile, £23.50, Flensted

There might be more sophisticated mobiles on the market, but this simple black and white model is all a newborn needs in the early weeks and months. They’ll be able to focus on the penguins to help with early visual and multi-sensory development. You can also buy versions with whales, sheep or elephants all in shades of black, white and grey.

The best black and white toys for newborns