In that quirky US gift shop I saw some fun sets of bath sponges. It put a smile on my face because I knew that the Handpicked Collection had just asked me to review the exact same sponges which were waiting for me at home for my return. Since I have been back, these fun bath sponges for kids have certainly lightened the atmosphere at bathtime.
When the girls start their bathtime, they quite civilly negotiate who will use the princess bath sponges and who will use the pirate bath sponges. I think that secretly Holly would very much like to be a pirate.
The sponges come in pairs - the pink princess crown comes with a purple wand and the green pirate hat comes with a blue sword. The wand and the sword don't really maintain their shape when they get wet so you have to wring them out if you want a sword fight. The crown and the hat have surface areas big enough to actually use for washing rather than just playing.
For us, bathtime is normally a bit of a struggle with quite a lot of barking orders so it has helped to lighten the mood and make bathtime more of a fun time of day. As long as the negotiations remain civil I think the sponges will survive but I would say that because of the fancy shapes, the sponges probably won't withstand a heavy hand and I can imagine the crown and wand could quite easily tear if the girls were to argue over them.
These fun sets of bath sponges for kids from the Handpicked collection would make great gifts and each set costs under a tenner.