Best Subscriptions for Autistic Kids

Sensory Theraplay is the best overall for sensory subscriptions

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Research suggests that autistic traits could be the result of differences and difficulties with sensory processing. Neurodivergent kids, and other people with a sensory processing disorder, may have trouble integrating sensory input, leading to dysregulation—a neurological experience of being emotionally and physically overwhelmed or underwhelmed. Yet we rely on our senses to help our brains understand and respond to what’s happening inside and outside of our bodies, explains Sarah Selvaggi Hernandez, an autistic occupational therapist who also works with autistic and neurodivergent kids.

Dysregulation occurs “if we have too much or too little sensory input,” explains Selvaggi Hernandez. “The brain will take over to seek out [or avoid] needed sensory information—including things like pressure, movement, and basic physiological needs,” to reset our systems.

Sensory toys support processing and regulation by offering tangible, interactive experiences that calm, excite, or otherwise engage the senses. The best sensory subscriptions for autistic kids invite young people to try new textures, sounds, tastes, and other experiences to help them explore activities and ideas in a sensory-pleasing way. 

Best Sensory Subscriptions for Autistic Kids

Best Overall : Sensory Theraplay Box


Sensory Theraplay Box

Sensory Theraplay Box

Key Specs

Cost: $42 (plus shipping)
Delivery:
Monthly
Number of Plan Options: 
4

Why We Chose It

Curated by an occupational therapist, these sensory boxes are filled with a wide variety of sensory toys and tools that have been successful in therapy sessions as well as highly requested by kids and caregivers. A pamphlet helps caregivers understand how each specific item will support growth and development.

Pros
  • Many items suitable for all ages and multiple settings (including on-the-go)

  • A dedicated product line curated for teens and adults

  • Single-box purchases available without subscription

Cons
  • Shipping isn’t free

  • Boxes lack a cohesive theme

The Sensory Theraplay subscription box is expertly curated specifically for autistic kids by an occupational therapist. Featured items engage multiple senses to help kids develop motor skills, self-regulate, focus, and calm anxiety. Each box offers high-quality fidget toys and games without a sky-rocketing price range. This is why it’s our pick for the best overall option for neurodivergent kids. 

We appreciate that each monthly box comes with five to six occupational therapist-approved sensory toys. The included pamphlet explains each item’s use, eliminating confusion for caregivers. Kids of most ages will benefit from offerings in the standard subscription, but we love that special plans are also available for teens and adults. Although shoppers can’t customize orders, they can buy single boxes without a subscription to get an idea of how the subscriptions will work for their children.

Pricing and Plans

Subscriptions automatically renew each month and bill on the 15th. Refunds are available for orders that haven’t already shipped, and it’s easy to cancel subscriptions by logging into your account or emailing customer service.

  • $42 for month to month
  • $124.50 for 3 months or $41.50 per box
  • $238 for 6 months or $39.70 per box
  • $462.00 for 12 months or $38.50 per box

Best for Sensory Development : Lovevery


Key Specs

Cost: $80–$120 (shipping included for lower 48 states + Canada)
Delivery:
Bimonthly or quarterly, depending on the developmental stage
Number of Plan Options:
4

Why We Chose It

An interdisciplinary team of early childhood and developmental experts has carefully curated Lovevery subscription boxes to offer toys and experiences that match kids’ developmental needs. Kids will receive playsets that support specific skills while caregivers gain access to experts, learning, and community.

Pros
  • High-quality toys

  • No surprises

  • Curated for developmental stages that can be customized for disability

Cons
  • Expensive

  • Many sets are themed and might be less engaging for kids with specific interests

Environmentally sustainable, Montessori-inspired toys and play sets from Loverly are delivered on a bimonthly or quarterly schedule. Kids will receive sensory toys that strengthen emerging skills with research-backed playtime that supports specific developmental stages. Shoppers know exactly what’s coming with each delivery before purchasing, and various add-ons are available.

We love that this company has not only cultivated playtime but has developed a strong sense of community and support for caregivers, including expert-led classes and their one-on-one Disability Support Service.

Pricing and Plans

The subscription options extend to four different age groups: 0-12 months old, 1-year-olds, 2-year-olds, and 3-year-olds. Prices are the same across all four age groups.

  • Bimonthly subscriptions cost $80 or $40 per box
  • Quarterly subscriptions are $120 or $30 per box

Shipping is free to the lower 48 states and Canada.

Best for Educational Purposes : Parenting EQ


Key Specs


Cost: Starts at $49.95 per month (plus shipping)
Delivery
: Bimonthly
Number of Plan Options:
3

Why We Chose It

Instead of focusing on academic topics, ParentingEQ offers young people activities for social-emotional learning with themed boxes that help them practice emotional regulation and social skills.

Pros
  • Teaches about emotional health, coping, and relationships

  • Builds empathy and connection in families

  • Caregivers know what they’re getting before they buy

Cons
  • Only six boxes available at this time

  • Not for kids to use independently


Caregivers know exactly what’s coming in each ParentingEQ box since each month’s activities are clearly outlined and photographed on the website. Caregivers will receive activities that promote social-emotional learning–including books, sensory toys, games, charts, and activities that will encourage discussion, reflection, and mindfulness. The boxes include sensory experiences that get overlooked by other companies, such as activities that include sound and movement to immerse families while they learn. These activities aim to improve self-awareness, self-regulation, empathy, motivation, and social skills.

We love that each box teaches new concepts to young people and reinforces these skills for older kids and caregivers, bringing the whole family together. Two plans have been developed for ages 4 to 7 and 8 to 11. Each delivery includes a thorough guide to help caregivers work with their young people to build a strong understanding of sensory needs and skills.

One-time purchases are available. Select single boxes that focus on a specific topic or choose from two bundles with games and discussion starters that are available for a one-time purchase. The bundles are geared towards educators or counselors but could be used in the home instead.

Pricing and Plans

Subscriptions are available for ages 4 through 7 or 8 and up. You can pause or cancel subscriptions before the upcoming billing cycle, and the subscription will automatically end after 12 months (six deliveries). Shipping is not included.

  • $49.95 for month to month
  • $165 for 6 months (though this is for only three boxes shipped bi-monthly or $55 per month, so we do not see this as being cost-effective)
  • $335 for 12 months (though this is for only six boxes shipped bi-monthly or $55.84 per month, so we do not see this as being cost-effective)
  • One-time purchase for past boxes available for $54.95

Best on a Budget : Big Play in Box


 Big Play in a Box

 Big Play in a Box

Key Specs

Cost: $25–$55 (plus $6 flat rate shipping)
Delivery:
Monthly
Number of Plan Options: 
2

Why We Chose It

We appreciate that Big Play in a Box offers multiple options to subscribers. The “full experience” kit includes multiple crafts, toys, and tools that are researched and curated by a pediatric occupational therapist. The condensed, budget-friendly box option doesn’t sacrifice quality for savings.

Pros
  • Caregivers know what they’re getting before they buy

  • Flat rate shipping of only $6 and low-cost add-ons

  • Themes for immersive experiences, including kitchen activities

Cons
  • May not be a good fit for kids with highly specific special interests

  • Not a fit for families looking for fidget toys

Big Play in a Box provides affordable opportunities for sensory exploration, including single-box kits as low as $15. The site also often has frequent sales. The company offers subscribers two subscription plans that each come with high-quality books and toys that align with a theme, immersing kids in each topic. The more expensive tier offers additional activities. You get a preview of what’s included each month, so t you’ll know what you’re paying for, but customizations are not available.

The company’s boxes have more variety than others we reviewed. Each box comes with materials and step-by-step instructions for multiple crafts and sensory experiences as well as expert tips from an occupational therapist on increasing difficulty or deflecting boredom to improve engagement. Families who subscribe to the full experience receive a kitchen activity that aims to build connection and communication. 

Pricing and Plans

Subscriptions cost $55/month for the full experience or $25/month for a condensed version. You can also add siblings for just $3–$5 per kit. Shipping is a $6 flat fee.

Best for Kids Under 5 : Busy Box Child


Key Specs

Cost: $37 plus shipping
Delivery:
Monthly
Number of Plan Options:
5

Why We Chose It

Busy Box Child offers themed kits that allow children to engage with a specific interest. The kits come with fun add-ons that can enhance the curated experience of play. We love the specially-marked “toddler-friendly” boxes, which include bigger toys to introduce shapes and textures without choking hazards.

Pros
  • Customize your selection to get only the boxes you want

  • Themes appeal to special interests with a variety of add-ons

  • Safer for kids who explore with their mouths

Cons
  • Placing an order requires more steps than other boxes

  • Minimum 3-month subscription required

Busy Box Child considers age and developmental stages, offering kits that work well for kids under 5. The company offers toys that are appropriate for young people who explore with their mouths and larger items that promote fine motor development without requiring mastery. Families can also add versatile, low-cost accessories, like colorful rice, inflatable trays, and learning tools–such as alphabet and number kits that are great for preschoolers.

We appreciate that Busy Box Child kits come with containers for easy storage and travel. Families can order options that align with a special interest for sensory play on the go. Mini options encourage activities neurodivergent kids tend to enjoy–like sorting and counting.

Busy Box Child asks subscribers to pick the boxes they’d like to receive along with some customizable options, like whether to include sand or non-toxic, homemade play dough. Shoppers are prompted to note selections during checkout, but this isn’t a straightforward process, so caregivers may have to email or engage in live chat with customer service to ensure they get what they want. Fortunately, the curator is quick to respond. During some months, the company sends holiday-themed boxes if an alternative preference isn’t specified. Unlike other companies, returns are welcome within 14 days.

Pricing and Plans


The Busy Box Child subscription costs $37/month regardless of how many months you subscribe for. You have the option to add siblings for an additional fee. Shipping charges are based on USPS and UPS box size and weight charges.

Best for Kids Under 12 : Box of Sensory Toys


Box of Sensory Toys

Box of Sensory Toys

Key Specs

Cost: $27.85–$75.95
Delivery:
Monthly or quarterly
Number of Plan Options: 
4

Why We Chose It

Box of Sensory Toys includes high-quality fidgets, balls, putties, aromatic items, and other toys that improve sensory processing as well as gross and fine motor skills. These traditional sensory tools can also aid self-regulation, anxiety, and focus.

Pros
  • Subscriptions at various price points

  • Perfect for kids who love to fidget and stim

  • Customization available for largest subscription option

Cons
  • Lacks guided activities or themed experiences

  • No returns unless an item is either defective or damaged

Even though the contents of each monthly delivery will be a surprise, Box of Sensory Toys is reliable and straightforward. Each subscription plan provides a monthly or quarterly box of high-quality toys that engage or regulate the senses.

While other companies curate a highly specific experience through the use of themes or kits, these sensory toys can be used in a more flexible way to help kids stay calm, focused, and relieved in a variety of settings. Items are often small enough to fit in a pocket, backpack, or purse, making them just right for tweens who want to be discreet or bring their favorite toys out and about.

Caregivers can select a plan for a specific age group, allowing them to choose an option that aligns with the emotional and developmental stages of their kids. We love that the assortment of options included in each plan is likely to please kids of different developmental stages and interests, even if a family doesn’t purchase the most expensive subscription.

Pricing and Plans

The price for this subscription varies depending on which one of the four sensory boxes you choose:

Shipping is included in the price of all four options.

Best for Teens : CalmBox


Key Specs

Cost: $37/month (shipping included); slightly lower prices offered if gifting or prepaying for multiple months
Delivery:
Monthly
Number of Plan Options: 
1

Why We Chose It

CalmBox is a therapist-curated subscription box full of stress-relieving gifts perfect for teens who want more sophisticated or calming options for sensory regulation, such as a quiet bath or soothing cup of tea. We love this subscription because it invites teens to entice their senses while introducing them to self-care and reminding them to slow down in the middle of their busy lives.

Pros
  • Free shipping and quick delivery in one to three days

  • Relaxing treats that promote self-care and peaceful practices

Cons
  • No customizations (snacks and skincare could include allergens)

  • Doesn’t include traditional fidget toys

Teens who subscribe to Calmbox will feel pampered and refreshed. Various companies offer self-care subscriptions marketed to adults that could work well for sophisticated teens, but we like CalmBox because their curators carefully craft opportunities for an immersive sensory experience. Items are also presented as gender-neutral, so teens and caregivers don’t need to worry about stereotyped marketing or products.

Each box offers five to seven items that promote peaceful feelings, like candles, organic snacks, special drinks, aromatherapy, skincare, curated playlists, guided meditations, and inspiring cards. Compared to the activity books offered to teens by other companies, Calmbox’s books and journals are whimsical without feeling childish.

Plans & Pricing

Each box is $37 a month and shipping is included. If gifting a subscription, you have the option to prepay for three, six, or 12 months, which can save you up to $5 per box.

  • $105/for 3 months or $35 per box
  • $198/6 months or $33 per box
  • $384/12 months or $32 per box

Best for Engaging the Entire Family : In This Moment Box


Key Specs

Cost: $35.99 (shipping included)
Frequency:
Monthly
Number of Plan Options: 
4

Why We Chose It

Each In This Moment box explores one of nine rotating themes, including The Breath, Emotional Awareness, Five Senses, and Gratitude. We love that this box makes mindfulness more accessible and digestible for families by creating small, intimate moments of pause, play, and discussion.

Pros
  • Discounted options without prepayment

  • Guided activities will engage most participants

  • Encourages sensory exploration that is calm and intentional

Cons
  • Cannot cancel multi-month commitments until it’s time to renew

  • Lacks clear information about what exactly will be included before purchase

A subscription to In This Moment Box will invite families to practice mindfulness together, teaching participants of all ages to become fully engaged in the present moment. Each box includes prompts for daily opportunities to connect as a family, a craft for kids, and a gift for adults that align with the specific mindfulness theme. This box is perfect for engaging the entire family because the included items and activities can be adapted for all ages and developmental abilities.

Studies show that mindfulness can benefit autistic kids by improving self-awareness, emotional regulation, general health, and relationships between parents and children while also lowering stress and aggressive or self-injurious behavior. Each mindfulness theme immerses participants in activities that invigorate the senses in unique ways, like blowing paint to make art, listening to bubbles pop, creating a textured stepping stone, and exploring scents found in nature. Even the packaging encourages families to slowly savor the experience of unwrapping.

Pricing and Plans

Subscribers can sign up for month-to-month rates or enjoy discounted options for longer commitments of three, six, or twelve months. The box size can be modified to accommodate one or two children. Unlike other companies, longer commitments don’t require caregivers to pay for multiple months in full upfront. Shipping is included.

  • $35.99/month for one child; $47.99/month for two children
  • $33.99/month for a 3-month subscription; $45.99 for two children
  • $31.99/month for a 6-month subscription; $43.99 for two children
  • $29.99/month for a 12-month subscription; $41.99 for two children

Best for Arts & Crafts Lovers : KitArtLit


Key Specs

Cost: $44.99–65.00 (plus $4.99 shipping in U.S., $14.99 to Canada, and $19.99 to other countries)
Frequency
: Monthly
Number of Plan Options: 
2

Why We Chose It

The creators of KitArtLit offer arts and crafts projects that are open-ended and process-based, eliminating the pressure of expected outcomes. We love this approach because it allows creative kids to freely express themselves, minimizes the impact of perfectionism, and increases confidence for kids whose skills differ from their peers. 

Pros
  • Double the art materials at no additional charge

  • Kids of all neurotypes can participate

  • Builds connections between family members

Cons
  • Kids who prefer more structure might require more encouragement

  • More expensive than other book + craft subscriptions

Each monthly KidArtLit box delivers a high-quality hardback picture book that families won’t likely already own, since curators select new releases and international titles. The creators combine storytime with artful sensory exploration by including projects inspired by the books, helping kids make connections between the story and their own world. Emphasis is placed on color, pattern, texture, or innovative use of tools, resulting in beautiful creations that are more sophisticated than typical storytime crafts.

While the Spark Kit includes one art project, the Deluxe includes two. Each kit provides enough materials for two participants to complete each activity at no additional cost, making parallel play easier. Because there is no right or wrong way to pursue open-ended projects, participants of varying ages and neurotypes can engage with the materials with different goals; some might work towards a finished product while others will enjoy the sensory experience.

Pricing and Plans

Both plans include in-box bonuses, such as book-themed playlists and suggested activities for additional exploration, which enhances sensory immersion and play. Past boxes are available for a one-time purchase. 

Spark Kits: $49.99/month; $143.97/3 months; $269.94/6 months; no annual plan
Deluxe Kits: $65.99/month; $188 for 3 months; $719.88 annual

Shipping is an extra $4.99 in the U.S.; $14.99 to Canada; and $19.99 to other countries.

Best for Math & Science Lovers : Beautiful Discovery


Key Specs

Cost: $35 (shipping included); prepayment discounts available
Frequency:
Monthly
Number of Plan Options: 
4

Why We Chose It

Beautiful Discovery subscription boxes engage the senses with a unique approach that aims to inspire awe. This subscription will appeal to kids who appreciate nature, patterns, and deep dives into new concepts.

Pros
  • A unique approach to STEM

  • Great for deep dives into new concepts

  • Free shipping

Cons
  • Discounted options require prepayment

  • The order the boxes will ship is unclear

Because most STEM subscription boxes deliver science experiments and engineering kits, Beautiful Discovery’s immersive approach is unique. The company promises that its boxes are more like a walk in the woods or a visit to a museum, making them more accessible to all ages and neurotypes when support is offered. We appreciate that each box engages the senses in unexpected ways, like connecting math and science concepts to music, art, texture, movement, and other sensory experiences.

Boxes include easy games, drag-and-drop block code, stories, art activities, and in-depth lessons that offer kids a variety of options for engaging with the topics in ways that feel most exciting to them. Shoppers can preview lessons to learn exactly what each box will explore.

Plans & Pricing

Subscribers who prepay for three, six, or 12 months receive a discount and gain access to additional online content. Shipping is always included.

  • Month to month: $35 per box
  • 3 Months: $99 or $33 per box
  • 6 months: $180 or $30 per box
  • 12 Months: $348 or $29 per box

Final Verdict


We chose Sensory Theraplay as the best sensory subscription box because it introduces subscribers to a variety of toys curated by an occupational therapist that help kids pay attention to their needs and empower them with new coping mechanisms to manage stress and executive dysfunction.“I think the most powerful way sensory boxes support the needs of autistic people is that they offer options,” says Selvaggi Hernandez, who underlines that kids might shift their preferences in different environments and situations.

Options like these might be especially beneficial in academic or workplace settings. For example, middle schoolers who used stress balls in class felt that their writing abilities, attention, attitudes, and peer interactions improved.

Sensory activities may also support bonding and communication, especially for nonverbal children. That’s why our second overall pick is In This Moment Box, which offers families an opportunity to connect with each other while exploring playful and peaceful practices that can be adapted for a wide range of neurotypes and preferences.

Compare the Best Subscriptions for Autistic Kids

 Company  Pricing + Shipping  Delivery  Number of Plan Options  Customizable?
Sensory Theraplay Box
Best Overall 
Starting at $42 per box + shipping  Monthly   4 No
Lovevery
Best for Sensory Development
Starting at $80 Bimonthly– $120 quarterly Bimonthly or quarterly  4 No
ParentingEQ
Best for Educational Purposes 
Starting at $49.95 per box + shipping Bimonthly  3 No
Big Play in a Box
Best on a Budget
Starting at $25 per box + flat rate shipping Monthly 2 No
Busy Box Child
Best for Kids Under 5
Starting at $37 per box + shipping Monthly 5 Yes
Box of Sensory Toys
Best for Kids Under 12
Starting at $27.85 per box + shipping Monthly or quarterly 4 Semi
CalmBox
Best for Teens
Starting at $37 per box Monthly 3 No
In This Moment Box
Best for Engaging the Entire Family
Starting at $29.99 per box Monthly 4 No
KidArtLit
Best for Arts & Crafts Lovers
Starting at $44.99 per box Monthly  2 No
Beautiful Discovery
Best for Math & Science Lovers
Starting at $35 per box Monthly 14 No

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is a Sensory Toy?

Autistic children often engage in repetitive behaviors using their own bodies for sensory processing and regulation, like rocking, tapping, and grunting. Sensory toys and bins provide a similar but external, tangible sensory experience. Each toy invites users into a specific experience that addresses one or more of the body's senses at a time. Although the subscriptions above include some industry favorites—think putty and fidget spinners–you can also make your own sensory toys and kits at home.

What Do Sensory Toys Help With?

Sensory toys support kids by engaging the senses to encourage exploration of their environments, motor skills development, communication, and emotional regulation.

How Do Sensory Subscriptions Work?

Sensory subscription boxes are recurring shipments of toys, activities, books, and/or other items that support sensory play. Plans are often monthly, but delivery schedules vary. Some companies offer one-time purchases including the contents of a previous month’s delivery, kits that explore a specific theme, or condensed options that are more affordable.

What Ages Are Sensory Subscription Boxes Best For?

Sensory subscription boxes invite people of all ages to explore their senses. Some companies have plans specific to age groups from babies to adults, while others offer items that appeal to a broader base of users. Caregivers might find that they also enjoy using their children’s sensory toys and can experience some of the same benefits that kids do.

My Child Is Not Neurodivergent. Will They Still Benefit From a Sensory Subscription?

Yes! Kids of all ages should be encouraged to use their senses to interact with the world. Sensory subscription boxes will introduce them to toys, activities, and concepts that could help them integrate sensory information, regulate their emotions, and learn more about their own needs. “We are all sensory beings!” says Selvaggi Hernandez. “This is my favorite part of inclusion. When we focus on the people who need accommodations and support to engage—in this case, neurodivergent people with disordered sensory processing—everyone benefits.”

Methodology

We reviewed over 100 subscription boxes— including many specifically designed for neurodivergent kids— to find options that would appeal to neurodivergent kids and their caregivers. Because Applied Behavioral Analysis is a controversial practice not often supported by autistic people, we did not include subscription boxes that were influenced by ABA techniques and practices. We specifically sought subscription boxes that promote connection with caregivers, affirm special interests and neurodivergent approaches to learning, teach young people social-emotional skills, and offer engaging activities for self-regulation and stimming.




Edited by
April McCormick
April McCormick

April is the health editor for performance marketing at Verywell, where she oversees family health, wellness, and lifestyle content. Her work has appeared in Time, Parents Magazine, The Huffington Post, TripSavvy, Parenting.com, First Time Mom and Dad, Mama Mia, All4Women, the New York Times Bestseller, A Letter To My Mom, and more.

Learn about our editorial process
and
Simone Scully
Simone Scully Headshot

Simone is the health associate editorial director for performance marketing at Verywell. She has over a decade of experience as a professional journalist covering pregnancy, parenting, health, medicine, science, and lifestyle topics.

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3 Sources
Verywell Family uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Keenan-Mount R, Albrecht N, Waters L. Mindfulness-based approaches for young people with autism spectrum disorder and their caregivers: do these approaches hold benefits for teachers? Australian Journal of Teacher Education. 2016;41(6).

  2. Stalvey S, Brasell H. Using stress balls to focus the attention of sixth-grade learnersJournal of At-Risk Issues. 2006;12(2):7-16.

  3. McGill O, Robinson A. “Recalling hidden harms”: autistic experiences of childhood applied behavioural analysis (Aba). AIA. 2021;7(4):269-282.