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From pool floats to sporty games, there's a toy for various ways to chill out in the pool and relax.
We conducted hours of research for this roundup, evaluating pool toys on their construction, durability, material, safety features, age recommendations, ease of setup, and cost. Our list includes pool toys designed for people of different interests and ages, from a fun avocado-themed pool float from Amazon to a budget-friendly volleyball game from Intex for competitive play.
Ahead, find the best pool toys for hours of fun in the water.
Best Overall: Jasonwell Inflatable Avocado Pool Float with Ball
Large, fast valves for easy inflation
Made of raft-grade non-phthalates material
Fun, dual function design
Not for use by children without adult supervision
Our top pick, the Jasonwell Inflatable Avocado Pool Float, boasts a dual function design, allowing people to lounge and play. This giant raft comes with a 17-inch inflatable beach ball in the shape of a pit. We love that it's made from quality raft-grade non-phthalates material that's not only safe and non-toxic, but durable enough to withstand chlorine, sun, and wild play. Customers also report that the thick, non-phthalates material has a soft skin-feel, which is important when you're lounging in nothing but a swimsuit. Jasonwell is a trusted inflatables brand with a chic and trendy aesthetic for pool toys that are guaranteed to make a splash on your social feed as well as in your pool.
We also love how easy it is to inflate and deflate this pool float, should you want to travel with it. The design features large double bed type fast valves that make inflation up to five times faster than regular valves. It also comes with a clutch inflate tube to really take the headache out of inflating pool toys. When you use a professional grade pool toy pump—Jasonwell makes a car powered electric air pump—inflation is a breeze.
This is a top-rated best-seller that's popular with both kids and adults, though do note that this toy is not recommended for use by children without adult supervision. Priced affordably, this super fun pool toy makes the perfect summer party accessory or unique home warming gift.
Best for Night Swims: Bestway H2OGO! Swim Bright Inflatable LED Swim Ring
Color-changing LED lights
Built-in cup holder
Large valves for easy inflation
Comes with repair kit
Some customers reported plastic is flimsy
The H2OGO! Swim Bright LED Inflatable Swim Ring Tube is perfect for night swims and after hour pool parties. It features an LED light that alternates between seven vibrant colors. A battery-operated switch makes using the lights a fun option, and a built-in cup holder allows you to swim with a beverage. The cushioned backrest lets you get into total lounge mode. We love how easily the tube inflates and deflates, with interlocking quick-release valves. Another bonus is the included repair patch in case of emergency or accidental rips and tears.
Best Budget : Intex Pool Volleyball Game
Includes inflatable volleyball and floating net
Comes with repair patch
The Intex Pool Volleyball Set comes with bags to help anchor into place at the bottom of the pool. You'll need to fill the bags with something—most customers report using landscaping rocks. According to users, this system works well and the net stays hunkered down during play. Also included is an inflatable volleyball, as well as a box to store it on your shelf, and a repair kit, in case of any unexpected mishaps. Customers report this pool toy is a total bargain at its price point, and offers hours of fun.
Best for Lounging: Poolmaster Riviera Wet/Dry Lounge for Swimming Pools
Adjusts from chaise to fully reclined with rope lever
Built-in arm rests and cup holder
Quality vinyl construction
Recommended for adults only
If your idea of water play means catching some rays, the Poolmaster Riviera Wet/Dry Lounge can be enjoyed in two positions: chaise and pool mattress. Simply adjust the rope lever so you can relax however you're most comfortable. Built-in arms rests and a cup holder are cool design features that make this the ultimate pool lounger. The durable vinyl construction ensures a sturdy float, and with the use of a pump, inflation is quick and easy. Note that this product has not been child tested for safety, so it's recommended for adult use only.
Best for Parties : GoFloats Inflatable Pool Drink Holders (3 Pack)
Design prevents tipping
A bit flimsy
An inflatable drink holder is a pool party game-changer, and these GoFloats mini flamingo rafts come three to a pack. Designed to cradle drinks snuggly to prevent tipping, they also work in hot tubs. Choose from other kitsch pool styles including palm trees, dragons, and cheeseburgers.
Best for Babies: V Convey Never Flip Over Mambobaby Swim Float
Unique pearl foam float prevents tipping
Comes with UPF50 plus sun canopy
Some customers report the buckles are hard to use
We love the Mambobaby swim trainer for babies to help prevent tipping or flipping. This is a top-rated baby float, notable for its design and superior construction. The outside is fashioned of swimsuit cloth, which makes it soft for baby's gentle skin. Customers report this fabric is durable and easy to dry. The inside is made of the latest tech pearl foam, for improved buoyancy and to prevent tipping. A swim vest, buckles, and crotch strap help baby float either sitting upright or on their bellies, for ultimate swim preparedness.
Best for Toddlers: Swimbobo Baby Swim Float
Adjustable upgraded safety buckle provides 5 support points
Design prevents flipping
Safety vest included with float
Comes with pump and tube for easy inflation and deflation
Customers with active toddlers report some tipping
The Swimbobo baby float allows your toddler to swim safely on his or her belly, for added safety and swim preparedness skills. This float allows for more interaction with the water than other toddler floats. With an upgraded safety buckle secured with five support points, parents report that toddlers can move easily without tipping or flipping over. A safety swim vest keeps the toddler afloat with an inflatable ring for added buoyancy on either side. Additionally, this float comes with a manual pump for easy inflation and tube for quick deflation.
Best for Kids: Fin Fun Mermaid Tails for Swimming with Monofin
Quality, easy-release fin
Fun for boys and girls
Only comes in two child-sized and adult sized-options
Only appropriate for advanced swimmers
Calling all mermaid fans, we've got you. The Fin Fun mermaid tail is a fun and flashy way for kids to enjoy the pool, featuring a dazzling, shiny scale texture and monofin that helps swimmers propel through the water faster than traditional strokes. One of the standout design features includes the easy-release fin, for added safety. Rather than strapping to your feet, the monofin stays in place and can be easily released in the water. The tail skin features fade-resistant premium fabric that stretches four ways, and you can choose from different color options. Finding the right size might include a bit of trial and error, as there are only two options for kids and two for adults.
Best Game: Fun Central 12-Inch Inflatable Emoji Beach Balls
Small enough for easy inflation and transport
A bit flimsy
Only comes in 3 styles
Super playful, Fun Central emoji inflatable beach balls make the perfect addition to your pool toy collection. Included are 12-inch balls that come in three unique emoji designs (set comes with four of each design). Kids aged three and up will love tossing these balls around for indoor or outdoor play; they also make cute party favors.
Best Tube : Intex River Run I Sport Lounge, Inflatable Water Float
Durable material suitable for rafting
Two built-in cup holders
Two sturdy handles
Comes with repair patch
Large enough for only one adult user
When it comes to quality tubes, the Intex River Run is the best of the best. It’s super spacious with a built-in backrest so you can cruise in absolute comfort. The raft-quality material makes this tube extra durable, able to withstand hours of wild play. We love that the tube is fashioned with a mesh bottom to keep you cool when temperatures rise. Two heavy-duty handles make grip easy, and two built in cup holders add to comfort.
Best for Dogs: Millard Inflatable Stay Dry Float for Dogs
Dog lovers, let your furry friends enjoy the pool with toys of their own. This safety-certified Millard float is made with durable, tear-resistant material to withstand claws, though some customers report that it works best for smaller, less active dogs. As an added bonus, you can flip the float over after your dog is done using it and use the float to serve poolside drinks. Find five cup holders on the reverse side: talk about a pop-up bar.
Quality, tear-resistant material
May not be suitable for large dogs
Best Unicorn Float: Jasonwell Giant Inflatable Unicorn Pool Float
Made with raft-grade non-phthalates material
Large, fast valves for easy inflation
Large enough to fit two adult users
Comes with carrying bag
Not for use by children without adult supervision
No pool toy collection is complete without a unicorn float, and this Jasonwell model boasts superior construction and fabulous style. We love that it's built large enough for up to two adults to fit and float. Raft-grade non-phthalates material adds to the float's durability, making it able to withstand rough play. Large, fast valves make for easy inflation, and the float comes with a carrying bag for easy transport.
Our top pool toy pick, the Jasonwell Inflatable Avocado Pool Float with Ball is durably constructed with raft grade phthalate-free material, suitable for all ages with adult supervision, affordably priced, and has a super fun aesthetic.
If you're looking for a non-inflatable pool toy, consider the Fin Fun Mermaid Tails for Swimming with Monofin. This toy is a campy way for kids and and adults to enjoy the pool.
What to Look for When Buying Pool Toys
When it comes to water play, safety is paramount. "First and foremost, families should look for toys that are age-appropriate and safe for kids to play with in the pool," says Jackie Breyer, Editorial Director at The Toy Insider. "When shopping for a party or get-together, keep in mind the ages of your guests and look for pool toys that are safe, durable, and fun for everyone." She also says to pay attention to age recommendations—"And if no age is listed, it is likely not safety-approved for kids."
Whitney Casares, MD, MPH, FAAP says that whether your kiddos are just getting used to putting their toes in the water or are experienced swimmers, babies, toddlers, and young children should never be left unattended [during water play]. "Kids can drown in as little as one inch of water, so always closely supervise water play," she says.
Pool toys get put through the wringer. They’re jumped on, inflated, delated, and thrown around both in and out of the water. Breyer explains that you should look for durable materials in selecting your pool toys. "Look for UV-resistant PVC materials," she says. "The sun can dry out and fade pool toys, leaving them cracked, peeling, and unsafe over time."
The occasional hole or rip is inevitable, but to stave off the sadness of watching your pool toy deflate in front of your eyes, buy one made of durable, thick vinyl.
There’s always an imminent threat of rips when it comes to pool toys. To spare yourself the hassle of another pool toy biting the dust, purchase one with backup patches or a repair kit—or have the forethought to purchase these things separately. That way, no pool party is ruined.
How do you inflate pool toys?
Pumps and air compressors are the way to go. "The quickest and easiest way to inflate a pool toy is with an air compressor or electric air pump," says Breyer. You can use a bicycle pump or your lungs, but the process will generally take much longer. Only manually blow into the air inlet if the toy is very small or it’s a last resort option.
How do you repair inflatable pool toys?
Sometimes floaties include patches, sometimes a full repair kit, and sometimes neither. If the latter, pick up a couple backup patches in case of a floatie deflating emergency, which is bound to happen sooner or later. Duct tape can also work, as well as a strong adhesive, like a shoe glue—just make sure whatever you use is waterproof.
How do you clean pool toys?
According to Breyer, pool toys should be cleaned and stored in a cool, dry location for maximum durability. "The sun, salt water, and chlorine can wear down a pool toy's materials and cut its life rather short," she explains. First, wash them with warm water and dish soap. Then, Casares says it's best to allow the pool toys to dry completely in the sun for at least four hours in between use.
Where do you store pool toys?
As the summer season comes to an end, you should start thinking about where and how you’ll store your pool toys. First, wash and dry pool toys as outlined above. Next, deflate all of the air out of them, then fold gently so you can stack and store them in airtight containers, like vacuum-sealed bags. (They’ll help keep mold, mildew, and pests from ruining your floaties). Finally, store them away, whether in a garage, basement, or storage closet, until next summer.
Why Trust The Spruce?
This article was written and researched by Jill Di Donato, a product reviewer, lifestyle editor, and copywriter with over 15 years experience writing for publications like Byrdie, HuffPost, and the Los Angeles Times.