Photo by Jerry Wang
Originally Posted On: How to Sell Beanie Babies: Turning Your Collection into Cash – (plushcollector.com)
In the 1990s, there was nothing more popular than when Beanie Babies hit the market. These cuddly little buddies are a child’s best friend. But, soon, adults came to realize their potential value.
These same adults paid thousands of dollars to stock up the toys in hopes that they could cash in years later. Well, here we are, decades after 1996, and it is finally time to give Beanie Baby selling a go.
Of course, that sounds easier than it is. One cannot simply list a Beanie Baby and reap the financial awards. There are factors like authenticity, rareness, and quality that you need to consider first.
Your old beanie baby collection could potentially earn you a lot of extra cash. Read here to learn how to sell beanie babies for a profit.
Lingo for How to Sell Beanie Babies
The market for selling old toys has a language of its own. Beanie Babies are no exception to this rule. To ensure you sell them for the right price, brush on these terms. The two most important are the phrase swing tag and tush tag.
The swing tag, or hangtag, is the iconic heart-shaped tag that hangs from all Beanie Babies’ ears. The tush tag is a secondary authenticity marker attached to the toy’s buttocks.
These were re-designed several different times. However, most will involve information such as:
- The Beanie Baby’s name
- The Beanie Baby’s birthday
- A small poem
- Manufacturing location
- TY logo
These tags will also show the generation of the Beanie Baby. Yes, these lovable toys have different lineages when it comes to manufacturing.
Naturally, the first ones ever made will go for more than more recent ones. Along with these terms, you should know what is inside of the Beanie Baby’s plush bodies.
The company stuffs them with a material called pellets. Most of the toys contain polyethylene (PE) pellets. However, some of the more rare kinds have polyvinylchloride (PVC) pellets inside of them.
Make Sure They Have the Tag
Now that we know what to call these tags, we can discuss the importance of having one. If you want to ensure the best beanie baby value out there, yours should have the original badges.
It is the same as having a comic book still in the plastic wrapping. The value significantly decreases once that tag, or wrapping, comes off the product.
People will not pay big bucks for a toy without the TY heart, especially since Beanie Baby’s have one of the most notorious tags in history. Maybe your beanie baby does still have the TY badge attached to its ear.
What is its condition? That tag needs to be mint if you want to list your Beanie Babies at full price. That means no rips, tears, or fading will be acceptable to potential buyers.
Errors Don’t Mean More Money
During production, there were more than a few spelling errors made on the hangtags and tush tags. Examples of this are two chameleons named Iggy and Izzy.
Consequently, Iggy received Izzy’s name and vice versa. Mistakes such as this caused people to believe that the toy’s prices would skyrocket over the years.
That is not to say that the errors are worthless. There are several Beanie Babies with blunders that make them worth much more than others. But those rarities are scarce.
You have to own a doll that possesses a unique error. In the Iggy and Izzy incident, most of those dollars from that generation have that same mistake.
So, just because you have a toy with an imperfection does not always mean you can turn a profit. Before listing your Beanie Baby online for a high price, you need to have it appraised. You could either be selling it for too little or for too much.
Consider Your Storage
Someone who buys Beanie Babies will be picky about their condition. That has a lot to do with how you store the toys away. Some people have their babies on a nice shelf or in a climate-controlled storage unit.
Others, however, have thrown them in a closet for decades. When selling, your toys need to be free of stains, dirt, or mold.
They also shouldn’t smell as though they have been in a closet for a long time. All of these factors could upset the value of the plush doll.
Rare and Original
The best Beanie Babies to sell are the originals and the rarest collections. Rummage through your assortment to see if you have any of the first nine Beanie Babies ever made:
- Legs the Frog
- Spot the Dog
- Splash the Dolphin
- Splash the Whale
- Squealer the Pig
- Chocolate the Moose
- Patty the Platypus
- Brownie the Bear
- Pinchers the Lobster
Keep in mind that for these to sell for a lot of money, they need to be 100% original. That means they cannot be from Happy Meals or duplicates from another generation.
On top of the nine, there are a few toys considered to be the rarest ever produced.
- Humphrey the Camel
- Quackers the Duck (with missing wings)
- Peanut the Elephant in a dark blue color
- A spotless Spot the Dog
- Pinchers the Lobster with a misprinted name, ‘Punchers’
These are good examples of the errors and defects which make some of the babies more valuable. There are also quite a few produced in small quantities.
Where to Sell Beanie Babies
When you go to list your Beanie Babies, you should do so on a credible website. Don’t trust sites like Craigslist to help you properly sell your valuable items.
Instead, use a company, like eBay, that will protect you as a seller. You can also find the best websites like Plush Creator to sell your current stock of Beanie Babies. Our website explains how we work and gives extra tips for selling TY Beanie Babies.
Quick Tips for Authenticating Beanie Babies
Unfortunately, Beanie Babies are easy to duplicate. One of the most counterfeited pieces is the TY heart tag. You may think you have a rare or valuable toy when, in reality, it is a fake.
Some key things to look out for during the authentication process are:
- Color or the fabric
- State of the tag
- Information in the tag
- Placement of the eyes
- Birth year
- Retirement year
- Cloth texture
If you do not trust yourself to make a wise judgment call during authentication, you can always find a professional. There are people out there who how to authenticate a beanie baby. An appraisal by one of these people will give you a solid understanding of what you have to sell.
Sell Your Babies
As you can tell, the rules on how to sell beanie babies vary in different ways. You have to consider the way they look, smell, and their very authenticity. We hope this guide of beanie baby-selling tips helps you make an informed decision when setting a listing price.
If you have any toys to sell, Plush Collector is more than happy to take your loveable friends off of your hands. Whether you have rare items, or too many, you can get started selling with us today!