Squish mania

1 minute read

A friend’s 10- and 12-year-old daughters put the importance of Squishmallows plush toys into sharp context: “Nothing is close to being as important,” they declared, “except maybe Taylor Swift.” Toymaker Jazwares has seen its Squishmallows earn billions of views on TikTok and millions of posts on Instagram while pushing the company to $1 billion in annual sales for 2023. From McDonald’s to the TV show Stranger Things, notable brands have clamored to get into the snugfest with a branding partnership. The toys are so popular, look-alikes from other toy brands are omnipresent from big-box stores to pharmacies and truck stops, and have sparked lawsuits from Jazwares. Despite the social media frenzy, Jazwares founder and CEO Judd Zebersky attributes the success of the “ultra-soft, huggable, snuggable buddy” to old-school values: playfulness and the simplicity of childhood. “Squishmallows’ popularity has … reinvigorated traditional plush play,” he says.

Correction, May 31
The original version of this story misstated Jazwares' annual revenue. The company says it was $1 billion in 2023, not $200 million.

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