Our story

Hugimals were born out of a personal quest — and loads of research. The idea started with a health and wellness journalist — Marina Khidekel — who used weighted blankets to ease her own anxiety and trouble sleeping, but it wasn’t long before she went searching for a more portable (and less hot) solution. She started researching weighted products and the science behind them, looking for something that could ease anxiety in anyone who loved the comforting sensation of Deep Touch Pressure: from kids to adults, neurotypical, neurodivergent, sensory-seeking, and everyone in between. She couldn't find what she was looking for so she set out to create it — a product that was high-quality, lovable and beautifully designed...something she would be proud to gift to loved ones or cuddle at home.

The next step was bringing together a team of experts who believed in the idea of Hugimals and helped perfect the product — from psychologists, pediatricians and occupational therapists to toy industry experts behind some of the most emotionally resonant characters you’ve loved (like the Toy-of-the-Year-Award-winning Twilight Turtle). With their help, Marina created the cuddly, comforting, luxe, lovable, washable, weighted plush of her dreams. Testers of all ages confirmed that these creatures were keepers. And now — at a moment when everyone could use a hug — Hugimals are finally here. We hope you and your loved ones enjoy their calming, comforting hugs!