Five tips to starting a squishy collection

May 20, 2021 3:35 PM

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A screenshot of a squishy community the author participates in. Screenshot by Alena Tran.

A screenshot of a squishy community the author participates in. Screenshot by Alena Tran.

Feeling stressed? Squishies can help! I was introduced to the foam toy when I received a squishy bun in my Kawaii Box, a subscription box from Japan catered towards all things cute. I was confused when I first got the bun because, well, what are you supposed to do with a sponge? I just put it on my desk for decoration, and it wasn’t until a year later that I noticed that whenever I was feeling stressed, I would squish it. From there on, I began to collect! In the process, I’ve made many mistakes so that you don’t have to. 

Here are five tips for squishy collecting! 

1.  Figure out if it’s your thing!

This is super important, because why waste money on something you don’t enjoy? Squishies can be very expensive. (Take this squishy that’s 150 USD!) But, in general, squishies the size of your palm should be around 10-15 dollars, but maybe more if it’s a brand name, like iBloom or Puni-Maru. So, before you say goodbye to your wallet and hello to thousands of squishies, find out if you even like them. Squishies can be used as stress relievers, or simply as cute decor. 

If you’re not into the cuteness, I’d just recommend buying a stress ball. They’re quite similar to squishies and are easier to find. A lot of workplaces, and even grocery stores have them. If you enjoyed squishing them and felt more relaxed, you’ll probably enjoy squishies as well. If you felt satisfied enough, maybe stress balls are your thing.

But, if you want more than stress balls, squishies are the way to go!

2. Start out small!

Now that you know squishies are for you, it’s best to start out with small and cheap squishies first. That way, you can figure out what suits you. A common starter squishy is a panda bun, and you can often find squishies like these in stores like Target and even Dollar Tree! 

Buying in-store can be a great way to see if something is good quality or slow-rising (a common term used to...you guessed it, describe how much time it takes for a squishy to rise after squeezing it). Although they’re probably not the best quality, they’ll help you figure out what kind of squishy you’re interested in purchasing. Maybe you like mini or jumbo squishies, or slow-rising ones, or ones with a fast popup, but the cheapest way to figure that out is by buying in person! 

3. Watch videos on Instagram and YouTube!

YouTubers often have coupon codes that you can’t find anywhere else! One of my personal favorites is Ketchupgiri, whose logo is an ADORABLE tomato, which she actually made a squishy out of!

As for Instagram, there are usually not a lot of accounts that have coupons, but it’s also a way to make friends. Sometimes, accounts will sell items at cheap prices on limited stock. I also just find it satisfying to watch people unbox and squish squishies, especially if I know they’re expensive ones, or ones that I’ve been debating whether or not to buy.

4. Use Mercari and websites based near you!

Mercari is one of the goldmines for buying squishies. Even compared to eBay and other websites for used goods, Mercari’s squishy selection is unbeatable. Although a lot of the items there aren’t in perfect condition, you can find some of the best deals on here. If used squishies aren’t your thing, there are plenty of websites based all around the world that you can buy from. There’s CharmsLOL and Jenna Lyn for Americans, Deliteful Boutique for Australians, SQUISHYJAPAN for those who live in Japan, and SO many more!

5. Download Amino!

Amino is a great way to make friends and get involved in the community! You can participate in polls to vote for your favorite bear squishy, or quizzes to see how well you know your brands. Squishy collecting isn’t a huge community, but with Amino, you’re able to hang out with people who love what you love!

Although squishy collecting can be an expensive hobby, there’s ways to get around it, whether it be by buying cheap stress balls, finding squishies from Dollar Tree, shopping on Mercari, or scavenging through various YouTube videos for unexpired coupons. Squishy collecting may not be the biggest community out there, but interacting with Instagram accounts and Amino groups that are a part of it are methods to make friends from this amazing community!

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