Best Camera for Kids to Encourage Early Photography
This guide to the best camera for kids is ideal for children who are showing an interest in photography from an early age.
While letting young kids use your smartphone camera to take photos may be convenient, it’s definitely not ideal!
The best cameras for kids are specifically designed to make a child’s introduction to photography a fun, exciting and rewarding experience – much like a drone for kids.
We’ll recommend camera models for toddlers and young kids that are simple to use, packed full of fun features and won’t break when dropped multiple times!
Camera image quality becomes more important for older kids, whereas very young children just want something fun and engaging.
The first digital camera for a 3-year-old will be different to the best digital camera for tweens, so we’ll make sure to include a selection appropriate to the age of your aspiring photographer.
Let’s take a look at the recommendations.
Best Cameras for Kids in 2022
|Kidamento Model K||View Price →|
|VTech KidiZoom Duo 5.0||View Price →|
|Ourlife Kids Camera||View Price →|
|VTech KidiZoom Creator||View Price →|
|Instax Mini 11||View Price →|
|GoPro Hero 7||View Price →|
Kidamento Kids Digital Camera
- Unique kid-friendly design
- Entertaining features
- Safe & durable
- Good image quality
- Wireless transfer
- Lanyard doubles as charging cable
- Slow to power on
- Lens cap unfastens easily
Sold out using the button above? Try here on Amazon instead.
It’s great to see the best camera for kids on our list produced by a small family business – Zoe and Roland are Canadian parents who couldn’t find any suitable digital cameras for kids that met their expectations, so they decided to make their own.
We took a look at the Meowie Model K – a super cute, soft and fun camera for kids aged 3 and upwards, and fell in love with its design and features.
Our daughter has just turned 2 but still took to carrying the Kidamento kids camera around with her all day long. Choosing between the different options was a little tricky for her, but for a child aged over 3, it’d be a cinch.
Aside from the irresistible pink and blue colouring (there’s also a sloth version called Zippy), children love interacting with the brightly coloured touchscreen to take photos and videos.
While image quality isn’t so important for very young children, it will be as they get older, so it’s great that the Kidamento features 48MP photo resolution, and 1,980 x 1,080 video resolution – more than enough to make big prints or display movies on a tv screen.
Another huge plus point is the lightness of the Kidamento kids camera – at only 125g, it’s by far the lightest camera we tested, despite having a 3″ touchscreen – perfect for small fingers.
The lightness of the camera combined with its soft rubber outer actually makes it one of the better rugged cameras for kids – it’d definitely survive multiple bumps and drops. There are definitely stronger tough cameras out there, but none as cute as this one.
Other ‘older kid’ camera features that surprised us was the inclusion of built-in image stabilization, Wi-Fi, Night Mode and Face Detection. Wi-Fi is particularly fun to be able to beam pics and videos over to other devices such as an iPad via the app.
Our kids (2, 5 and 6) loved the ‘Stickers’, which allow you to add a live-view overlay of animals and other cute objects to the photo being taken. The sound effects are also a nice touch, particularly for younger children.
Some of the best cameras for kids include pre-installed games, which can be a mixed blessing – sure, they encourage the kid to use their camera, but it might be for the wrong reasons. I was actually pleased to see that the Kidamento didn’t include any games.
My favourite feature as a parent who needs to constantly keep devices charged is the ingenious neck-strap, which conceals the charging cable! It’s also nice not having to fiddle around with the tiny MicroSD card, since everything can be transferred wirelessly from the digital camera to a phone or tablet.
The only small niggle is about the lens cap, which comes off easily when tugged – it’s fastened to the camera, but not particularly tightly.
Also, I wish it was slightly faster to power on, but our kids didn’t seem to mind since the startup screen is so cute!
Overall, this is the best camera for kids aged between 3-6, but younger kids will still find it enjoyable too.
VTech KidiZoom Duo 5.0
- Front and rear camera
- Built-in video games
- Color filters
- Shoots photo and video
- No rechargeable batteries
- The batteries can come out if dropped from a certain height
What makes the KidiZoom Duo 5.0 the best camera for kids aged 3-4 is the build and design. It has handgrips on both sides so your child can hold the digital camera with both hands, preventing drops and helping to keep the image steady.
(Image quality can be greatly improved via a steady shot, which leads to a sharper, clearer image, particularly in low light.)
There’s a shutter button on the front part of the grip to press with the index finger – since this is difficult to reach for smaller children, it can also be triggered with the OK button on the back, much like a point and shoot camera.
Its design resembles a portable videogame, and actually, it does have some games included. This ensures hours of fun for your children even when they are done taking photos – as you know, kids can get bored easily, and a multi-function device can be great to keep them going!
Even if it looks like a videogame, the KidiZoom Duo 5.0 has some features that will get your kids acquainted and familiar with the use of traditional cameras later on.
One nice addition is the optical viewfinder – since this is a camera for kids, there’s no mirror in it so you won’t see exactly the same as what the lens sees, but it’s still a good tool to learn about framing without using the LCD screen.
The best cameras for kids seem to have this in common – introducing children to ‘adult camera’ features that you’d find on a regular point and shoot camera while making them accessible enough to use even at a young age.
You can also rotate the lens ring to apply different color filters. This is something that can easily be done digitally, but having to make a mechanical movement is great for kids to help them feel like a real photographer!
(This will also help to make younger kids comfortable for when they have a camera with the aperture or the zoom adjustment on the lens itself.)
The KidiZoom has a sturdy rubbery case that makes it shock-resistant so that it will take all the falls that come from normal kiddie use. Rugged cameras are definitely advisable, so it’s nice to see that KidiZoom has made all their kids cameras tough.
The only thing is that the battery compartment can sometimes open when the camera is dropped, and the batteries can fly out – this can obviously be a safety issue for younger children, so we recommend taping over the battery cover just in case.
The image quality is not the best (5MP), especially if you use digital zoom, since you’ll end up with pixelated images. However, the KidiZoom allows for video recording, allows you to add a multitude of fun stickers and frames, and also includes a selfie camera for the little ones to take a photo of themselves easily.
The KidiZoom has an internal memory that holds up to 200 photos which is a great tough, especially if your child forgets to insert a memory card, or you don’t have one on hand. There’s also a slot for an SD card if you prefer to expand the memory.
The biggest downside is the fact that it doesn’t have a rechargeable battery, working on 4 AA batteries.
This isn’t exactly friendly environmentally friendly and it can amount to a big expense after a while. I recommend you get rechargeable batteries which are a bigger investment at the beginning but they pay off in the long run.
All in all, it’s a great first camera for children that will give them hours of fun and can take its fair share of falls to accompany your kids on every adventure.
It’s also worth mentioning that according to hundreds of positive Amazon reviews, the KidiZoom series also been called the best camera for kids many times over.
Ourlife Kids Camera
- Waterproof case
- Tripod/Mounting accessories included
- 8GB memory card included
- Reversible lens
- No selfie mode when it’s in the waterproof case
- Menu and buttons not so intuitive
This digital camera for kids has a bigger age range (6-15 y/o) than the average kiddie camera because it’s an action camera. Thanks to its multiple accessories, it can adapt to all sorts of activities and grow with your kids as they change and explore different interests and hobbies.
As you unbox the Ourlife, you’ll find it comes in a plastic transparent case – this is the waterproof one and can handle up to 100 feet depth (30 meters). This is one of the most attractive features as you can take it on vacation to the beach, use it for swimming lessons, etc – tough cameras like this give parents peace of mind, especially with clumsy children!
If there’s no risk of water damage you can switch from the rigid waterproof case to the rubber case which also has two side handles for easier grip.
It should also be mentioned that in this list of the best cameras for kids, the Ourlife is the only waterproof camera we recommend.
Since the lens flips 180 degrees but uses the same sensor, you can take photos and videos in selfie mode and maintain the same image and video quality, which is 8GB for pictures and FHD 1080p/30fps video.
You can also choose to lower the size of the digital image if you want to be able to take more photos on one memory card. There’s a 5 and 10-second timer and face detection to ensure self-portraits are always on point.
Face detection is an advanced camera feature, and definitely not something you’d expect on a camera for kids – its inclusion here is a pleasant surprise and will help to ensure more ‘people photos’ are in focus.
The multiple mounting accessories included with the Ourlife allow your kids to have the camera with them for every activity. You can mount it on a helmet, a bicycle, a tripod, hang it from the neck or use the hand strap – being able to customise the shooting angle really adds to the creative options available.
Aside from the action features, the Ourlife also has some creative features to make taking photos even more fun. With 12 frames and effects for photos and 7 color filters for videos, your children can give free rein to their imagination.
Other nice features are the two fill lights which help illuminate the scene for night shots, and a strong light suppression option which helps to compensate for intense highlights during midday. These two features ensure better photos under any light condition, making this the best camera for kids who take photos all through the day, both indoors and outdoors.
There are three colors to choose from – pink, purple and navy blue. After the purchase, you have a 30-day money-back warranty, 12 months of service and lifetime customer support – something most of the other best cameras for kids can’t offer.
Seckton Kids Selfie Camera
- Shoots photos and video
- Games and MP3 player
- 32GB SD card included
- Selfie dual camera
- Durability issues
- Audio records in very low volume
This is a beautiful and easy to use point and shoot amera perfect for children 3 to 9 years of age. It’s shaped like a DSLR so your kids can feel like real photographers.
The camera has one solid color and the lens another – the color combinations are eye-catching and your kids can choose which one reflects best their personality.
Often with kids cameras, parents focus on all the various photography-related features of the camera, when all many children actually want is something that looks cool!
The upgraded version of the Seckton comes with a dual camera for your kids to play with the selfie function. Otherwise, they can place the camera on a tripod or any surface and use the 2, 5 or 10-second time-lapse function.
If your kids have never experimented with time-lapse photography before, they’re going to love it! It also can serve as a handy way to make your children clean their rooms – just set the Seckton up on a tripod pointing at the mess, then let the time-lapse record all the cleaning!
The camera is armed with autofocus to improve the image quality of the photos – all the best cameras for kids in this guide feature AF – it’s essential for getting sharp images, especially for very young children who don’t understand how to use manual focus.
There’s no manual exposure control, but that’s to be expected on a camera for kids.
To enhance portraits, kids can use any of the 28 frames and stickers or play with the 6 color filters available. It’s also possible to make HD videos with the Seckton – although the quality of the sound recording could be better.
The battery is built-in to the Seckton making it safe and secure, and it offers 1-2 hours of continuous use. Since small children like to change activities continuously, it also features games and works as an mp3 player to keep them entertained all day.
The Seckton is nice and small, which makes it easy to carry on kids’ backpacks or around the neck with the included strap. The case is made with non-toxic plastic for extra safety.
Although the shell is supposed to be shockproof, some users complain about durability and issues with the LCD screen after being dropped. You might want to invest in a third-party tough camera case to increase its life span.
Sinceroduct Kids Camera
- Shoots photos and video
- Cute design
- 32 GB SD card included
- Hard buttons to press
- Easy to accidentally delete all the pictures
The dog design camera body makes this digital camera extremely appealing for young children, which makes it the perfect camera to get your 3-6 year old interested in taking pictures.
The upgraded version that’s now on the market features 20MP in both the front and rear camera, as well as 1080p video recording.
Even if great image quality is not a major concern for young photographers, higher resolutions are always welcome as they will deliver sharper images even when using the 4x digital zoom.
The rear camera is ideal for taking selfie photos or videos, and the fact that the child can see themselves while they’re shooting makes it all the more fun.
Sinceroduct recommends this camera for children up to 12 years of age – I’m guessing it’s due to the high-quality build which an older child might appreciate.
However, by that age, they might have outgrown the cute looks and be more interested in something that allows them to control the camera settings with features like continuous shooting mode and manual focus. Each young child is different in this regard.
The built-in battery can last 2-4 hours and the automatic shutdown is a very handy function on a kids camera, since little people don’t always remember to turn things off!
The auto-0ff feature can avoid the frustration of finding the digital camera without power every time your kids want to use it because they forgot to turn it off. The automatic shutdown can be programmed for 1, 3 or 5 minutes.
Like most of the best cameras for kids, the Sinceroduct comes with built-in games to keep your children entertained if they get bored of taking pictures without you having to bring extra devices to your trip.
As mentioned before, in-built games have pros and cons – on the plus side, they encourage your child to pick up the camera and make it a more enjoyable toy to use overall. On the minus side, they may act as a distraction from the actual photo-taking experience.
If you have a slightly older child, they probably already have access to smartphone cameras or even videogames, so the in-built games on the Sinceroduct may not even interest them anyway.
To make each photo extra special, your kid can choose from 28 photo frames and 6 color filters. If they want to photograph themselves, there’s a timer shooting mode that allows them to delay the shutter for 2, 5 or 10 seconds to get in position.
The automatic face focusing ensures that they’re always sharp in their pictures – this is a feature you’d normally only find on a more advance camera.
Overall, this cute digital camera delivers a whole lot more than you would expect from a toy camera shaped like a dog!
VTech KidiZoom Creator Cam
- Animated backgrounds for video
- Tripod and green screen included
- Shoots photos and videos
- Tripod serves as a great grip for smaller hands
- Short battery life
- Not shock resistant
If your kids love making videos, this is one of the best cameras to encourage their film-making passion. With its multiple features and functions, you’re guaranteed hours of creative fun.
VTech is one of the major brands in educational toys, and you can see this experience put into action when they came up with this video camera.
The main attraction of the camera is the possibility to make videos in front of the included green screen photo backdrop and use any of the 22 animated backgrounds.
This way, your child can pretend to be running away from a dinosaur for an adventure story or dancing on a bright disco floor for a music video.
If your kids prefer to do some magic tricks, they can use the green screen to make things disappear – or make themselves invisible. It doesn’t matter what their personality is or which thing they like – I’m sure they can find something that appeals to their interest.
The lens on the VTech KidiZoom Creator flips up to be used as a selfie, and the included tripod can double as a holder/selfie stick too. The video editor tools are very easy to use, so they can trim clips or add music to their videos.
When used as a selfie-stick, the tripod on the Creator Cam is the ideal size and grippiness for smaller hands, and provides a unique perspective for taking those selfies! (See our guide: are selfie sticks worth it?)
Kids can also take photos with the camera and use the time-lapse creator to join them up as a stop-motion video – or they can use stickers and frames to make fun photos to share with friends and family.
The digital camera also includes some video games – like most of the popular digital cameras for kids. A very appreciated feature as a parent, though, is that you can turn off the games too!
This way, you can encourage them to use the camera as such, and this way exercise their creativity – and when you think it’s appropriate, you can turn the games back on.
Another feature I appreciate is that it doesn’t connect to the internet – this way there are no risks to the children’s privacy. The photos and videos can be downloaded to the computer via USB, and you can help them with this at your discretion.
The camera has 256MB of internal memory, although it is shared with program data, so is likely to be less than this. However, it’s a nice inclusion on a point and shoot camera, and serves as a backup for those times when your child has forgotten to bring a memory card.
Keep in mind that which the photos are only 5MP, the videos are HD quality so the internal memory can be used up quickly. Thankfully, you can get memory cards cheaply these days.
Overall, the VTech is one of the best cameras for kids aged 5-10, but just remember that it’s not particularly shockproof. Explain to your children that it should be handled with care, or try to find a third-party case to protect it.
Instax Mini 11
- Picture quality
- Beautiful design
- Selfie mode
- Automatic exposure
- No rechargeable battery
- Instant film cost can add up
If you’re looking to step away from the digital world, an instant camera is a perfect way to do it. The design of the Mini 11 range of instant cameras is very pretty, and they’re super easy to use, making them great as a kid’s first camera.
One thing to note is that Instax cameras are not recommended for toddlers, since there’s a choking hazard due to some small parts – don’t give it to children under 3 y/0 – this is the same with any kids Polaroid camera in general.
The Instax Mini 11 is actually not that small, so it might be tricky for small hands to hold and handle. Generally speaking, instant cameras are aimed more at pre-teens and teens.
This age group usually love the fact that they can have a physical (tangible) memory from a party or hanging out with friends that can be stuck up in their rooms or used as a bookmark – this is the real appeal of instant cameras for kids.
Instant cameras also give kids a different approach to photography because, with a film camera, you can’t shoot an unlimited number of images – you need to choose the special moments that are worth pressing the shutter button for.
In this age of smartphone cameras and the ability to shoot off an infinite number of digital photos, it’s nice to be able to slow things down and force your children to be more mindful with an instant film point and shoot camera.
Instax mini film is sold separately in 10 sheet cartridges – you can buy a 2 pack for about $13 or a 5 pack for $40. You’ll also need 2 AA batteries, so consider these extra expenses if you decide to buy one of these cute instant cameras for your child.
I definitely wouldn’t say this is the best camera for kids who find it hard to understand money at an early age since every press of the shutter button brings them (or more likely you, as the parent) closer to another expense!
You can choose the camera in 5 different colors and you can further customize it with one of the two accessories buttons that come included in the box: jewel or glow. These buttons are attached with a double-sided tape that can come off easily, though.
In the box there’s also a wrist strap included and some batteries – however, and this is a big drawback, there’s no film! Please remember to buy a few packs of instant film when buying the Instax for your child, or they may be disappointed on Christmas day!
The camera is, however, very easy to load with film. Once you have the film cartridge safely inside, all you need to do it to turn it on and press the shutter button – everything is automatic, including the flash.
You can even use this instant camera for selfies – as you pull out the lens, a built-in selfie lens appears. There’s a small mirror next to the lens to find the perfect selfie pose and facial expression before taking the photo.
Trust me, image-conscious preteens and teens will love this seemingly insignificant inclusion of a mini mirror! It’s actually especially important on an instant camera, so no press of the shutter button is wasted.
The Instax is also a great camera for the whole family, and it’s a fantastic way to teach kids to think about what they want to capture before pressing the shutter – something they definitely won’t get from a digital camera.
GoPro Hero 7
- 4k video
- Live streaming
- Image stabilization
- Short battery life
The GoPro Hero7 Black is a waterproof action camera that’s also one of the most durable cameras you can find, which is why it is great for children.
It’s more expensive than any of the other cameras recommended in this article, but keep in mind that this is a ‘real’ camera and not a toy one. As far as rugged cameras go, it’s also one of the tougher ones available.
The Hero 7 is an older model of GoPro, so it’s an affordable way to have a great action camera for your kids to learn the ins and outs of photography and shooting videos.
Despite not being the latest GoPro action camera, the Hero 7 offers advanced features such as hands-free voice control, time-warp and time-lapse video. The biggest selling point is the HyperSmooth image stabilization, which helps keep video footage buttery-smooth.
The Hero 7 also has three different in-built lenses – Superview, Wide and Linear. Superview is a fish-eye style view of the world, stereotypical of small action cameras of this variety. It’ll ensure that even short arms will be able to capture their faces in shot as well as a lot of the background for an immersive movie.
‘Wide’ is as the name suggests, but not quite as edge-warping as Superview, and then ‘Linear’ is a more traditional 16:9 shot that is quite cinematic.
The Hero7 is one of the few GoPros that allows you to replace the protective lens, which sits in front of the delicate interior lens. This makes it the best camera for kids who want to push their dare-devil sporting endeavours to the extremes, without having to worry about paying for an entire new camera when the lens breaks!
As far as specs go, the Hero 7 captures 4k video in stunning clarity – you can even grab high definition stills photos from the footage. Basically, this means that the video quality is so high that when you’re viewing it on a computer, you can ‘pause’ the footage and take a screenshot, or use the GoPro software to export a ‘still photo’.
This is a neat feature for kids, meaning that they only have to think about shooting video, since any photos can be ‘grabbed’ from the footage when they get home.
You can live stream (at 720p), but live streaming video in general is something that you might want to keep an eye on and talk to your children about privacy and the potential risks of sharing online.
For still photography, the Hero7 it offers images with 12MB resolution – not huge, by any means, but enough to capture enough detail in most shots in decent light.
Thanks to all the GoPro accessories, the stabilization and the white noise reduction, this is the best action camera for 10-year-old kids and upwards who love a bit of fun in the great outdoors.
Depending on the type of activity, you can get a head strap, a chest mount, a handlebar and even a surfboard mount. There are tons of accessories from GoPro and third-party manufacturers to make this camera versatile enough to keep up with all your kid’s crazy interests!
You may even have a budding young YouTuber on your hands – a GoPro is all it takes to start filming first-person point-of-view videos that seem ti be so popular online right now.
There’s no need to buy a dedicated camera for YouTube – a GoPro is all a kid needs to start vlogging and creative online video content. Just remember what I said about privacy concerns online for younger children, though.
The Hero 7 does have a short battery life, especially if your children use it for streaming or they leave the WiFi on. Fortunately, it has a removable battery, so you can buy an extra one to keep going. This is an extremely portable camera that most kids will love to carry with them everywhere they go.
Sometimes, the best cameras for kids will involve investing over $100, but for the huge step up in image quality, shooting modes, features and robustness, it’s definitely worth it.
If you’re looking for a kids video camera that will can a beating, this GoPro is an affordable, high-quality option that will be their favourite toy for years to come.
How to Choose the Best Camera for Kids
Here are some of the top criteria when selecting the right camera for your children.
Depending on their age, some of these points may or may not be relevant to you, but it’s worth taking a look nevertheless.
- Size/weight – especially for toddlers or young kids, a lightweight camera that’s small enough to hold in little hands is recommended. In general, the more advanced a camera becomes, the heavier it gets, so fortunately, most cameras for kids are built small and light.
- Looks/design – for young children, the cuteness factor of a digital camera is important. The cuter it is, the more likely they are to pick it up and carry it around. For slightly older kids and young teens, it’s great to choose a funky camera, such as the Instax Mini.
- Battery life – you don’t want to be hearing, “mum, the batteries have run out!” every hour, so choose a camera for kids which has a battery life of at least 3 hours of continuous use. If there’s an auto-off feature, that’s also a huge plus, since kids rarely remember to turn things off.
- Durability – rugged cameras quickly pay for themselves, especially if you have very clumsy kids! Be aware that tough cameras can be slightly heavier, but for the most part, the best cameras for kids have rubber exteriors keeping them relatively lightweight and shock-proof too.
- Image quality – definitely more relevant for older kids and preteens. The best cameras for kids take sharper photos, and especially where selfies are concerned, a sharper image is a better one! For younger kids, image quality isn’t so important, as at this stage in life, it’s unlikely they’ll have had anything to compare to.
- Inbuilt games – a double-edged sword! They provide an additional layer of entertainment for your child, but they can also be a distraction. The best cameras for kids allow parents to turn off the games when necessary, allowing the kid to focus on the task at hand – taking pretty photos!
- Cost – in general, you get what you pay for with kids cameras, just as you do with more advanced camera models. When buying for older children, remember that investing over $100 is often a good idea for the longevity of the camera, image quality and its in-built features. Thankfully, all the best cameras for kids reviewed in this guide are both affordable and good quality.
Kids Camera FAQs
What is a good first camera for a child?
The best entry-level camera for a child is one that’s easy to hold and allows them to just point and shoot – image quality shouldn’t be a big concern. The VTech Kidizoom cameras (like the Kidizoom DUO or Camera Pix) and the Fisher-Price Kid-Tough are great options.
What is the best camera for a 5-year-old?
It’ll depend a lot on the child’s interests. If they love sports, check out the VTech Kidizoom Action Cam 180; the Hello Kitty Instax is popular with girls, while the VTech Kidizoom DUO is an all-around favourite. The best cameras for kids aged 5 years need to be visually appealing, while also offer fun features to keep them entertained.
What age is Kidizoom camera for?
The Kidizoom DUO and Camera Pix are aimed at 3-8 years, though the DUO is better for older kids. For ages 6-9, there’s the Kidizoom Selfie Cam – the best camera for kids who like to take photos and videos of themselves!
I hope you enjoyed my review of the best cameras for kids. Getting children interested in photography as a hobby can be a great way to foster their creative development, opening the door to a whole world of fun and experimentation.
When your mirrorless camera or film camera is the source of your child’s attention, seize the opportunity to buy them something of their own. Cameras for kids are the cheapest they’ve ever been, and more and more technology from advanced cameras is trickling down to these basic models.
Who knows? Your child might be the next Annie Leibovitz or Henri Cartier Bresson! Encourage their interest in photography and let’s see where it takes them.
If your child has a favourite camera that’s not on this list, please leave it in the comments so other parents can benefit.
Disclaimer: All recommendations are impartial and based on user experience, with no bias to the products or the brand. The products in this post may contain affiliate links.