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The Best Holiday Ornaments

Last updated on March 8, 2024

Our Review Process

Don't Waste Your Money is focused on helping you make the best purchasing decision. Our team of experts spends hundreds of hours analyzing, testing, and researching products so you don't have to. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in a category.

Our Picks For The Top Holiday Ornaments

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Product Overview
Key Takeaway
 Editor's Choice

Kurt Adler Clear Glass Icicle Ornaments, 24 ct

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval

Kurt Adler

Clear Glass Icicle Ornaments, 24 ct

A delightful winter feel is what you'll get when you decorate your tree with Kurt Adler Clear Glass Icicle Ornaments, 24 ct. The icicles are different sizes, which makes them appear more realistic. This top ornament pick is made from quality glass. While the icicles are gorgeous to look at, great care must be taken when storing them during the offs...

Overall Take

Realistic IciclesBring the outdoors indoors with this wintery set of Kurt Adler Clear Glass Icicle Ornaments, 24 ct.

 Also Great

Sleetly Transparent Swirl Christmas Ornaments, 12 ct

Sleetly

Transparent Swirl Ornaments, 12 ct

Although the Sleetly Transparent Swirl Ornaments, 12 ct look like glass, they're actually made with durable and shatterproof plastic. That means they're a perfect fit for homes with small children and pets. The ornaments also feature a hand-painted swirl design that adds a touch of elegance to any tree.

Overall Take

Elegant Swirl DesignHomes with small children and pets will appreciate the Sleetly Transparent Swirl Ornamaments' shatterproof construction and hand-painted swirl design.

 Strong Contender

Oriental Trading Co. Multicolor Glass Icicle, 12 ct

Oriental Trading Co.

Multicolor Glass Icicle, 12 ct

While the Oriental Trading Co. Multicolor Glass Icicle, 12 ct isn't made to look realistic, each icicle features blue and amber hues that glow when placed next to the lights on your tree. They also add a decorative touch when hung in windows or across fireplace mantels. Users will need to handle the icicles with care, as they are easily breakable.

Overall Take

Whimsical Ornament SetAdd a splash of color to your tree or front window with this vibrant Oriental Trading Co. Multicolor Glass Icicle, 12 ct set.

 Great Value

KI Store Christmas Ball Ornaments, 34 ct

KI Store

Christmas Ball Ornaments, 34 ct

Even though the KI Store Ball Ornaments, 34 ct come in one solid color, the balls feature five different finishes for a bit of variety. The shatterproof balls are capped and come with hooks for easy attachment to your tree or a strand of garland. If you prefer, you can also skip the hooks and use string instead.

Overall Take

Affordable OrnamentsIn addition to its friendly price tag, this set of KI Store Ball Ornaments, 34 ct comes in five different finishes.

Buying Guide

Many households begin preparing for the winter holiday season as soon as Thanksgiving has ended. If you enjoy setting up a holiday tree and decorating your home with the ones you love, you’ll need a few ornaments.

Kristin Forte/Simplemost Media

Ball ornaments are perfect for those who like a more traditional look. You can get them in almost any color or size. The KI Store Ball Ornaments, 34 ct comes in 23 different color choices with each set of colored balls having five different finishes. The finishes include glitter, shiny, mirrored, matte and shiny swirl.

Perhaps you’re searching for a ball ornament with a little something extra. In that case, the Sleetly Transparent Swirl Ornaments, 12 ct are a better choice. These balls are hand-painted and have more of a unique look than a ball made of just one solid color.

Kristin Forte/Simplemost Media

Another option is to go with an icicle design. The Kurt Adler Clear Glass Icicle Ornaments, 24 ct are simple and realistic, while the Oriental Trading Co. Multicolor Glass Icicle, 12 ct add a pop of color to your tree.

No matter what pattern you prefer, it is important to check out what material the ornament is made out of before you buy. Glass ornaments are stunning; however, they will break if dropped. These ornaments are better suited to a household full of adults. Homes with children and pets need ornaments that are listed as shatterproof.

Check to see whether the ornaments are hung with a string or a hook. Again, hooks have sharp edges that could harm kids and animals. You’ll want to opt for a string unless you live alone or with another adult.

Kristin Forte/Simplemost Media

Feel the weight of the ornament you are considering. You want to keep in mind that heavy ornaments may pull down tiny tree branches. Of course, you could still use the heavy ornaments as decorations elsewhere in your home.

Finally, you’ll need to determine how many ornaments you need. Most ornaments are sold in packs of 12 or more. If your tree is on the larger side and you’d like 24 ornaments, you’ll either need to purchase two 12 ct. packs or one 24 count pack.

What to Look For

  • Typically, you won’t find any ornaments that come with a warranty, as many of them are considered fragile. You may be able to request a free return, however, if any of the ornaments arrive damaged.
  • Before storing your ornaments, remove the hooks. This is important for two reasons. First, you won’t accidentally cut yourself with the hook when reaching for an ornament in a box. Second, the hook won’t have a chance to scratch the actual ornament while it’s in storage.
  • It’s best to store ornaments in their original packaging, as the packaging was specifically designed to keep the ornaments safe. If the packaging is lost or damaged, you can purchase an ornament storage chest. As you place the ornaments in the squares within the chest, add a little tissue or newspaper in the empty corner spaces to keep the ornaments from rolling around.
  • When your ornaments become scratched or worn, don’t toss them in the trash. Instead, consider giving them new life. You can add glitter or ribbons to an ornament with scratches. Older ornaments look great when assembled on a wreath. There’s also the option of breaking ornaments made of colored glass and using the glass to make a mosaic masterpiece.
  • There are several factors that determine the price of ornaments. These include the material the ornament is made out of and the intricacies of the ornament’s design. For example, Kurt Adler Clear Glass Icicle Ornaments, 24 ct are cheaper than the Oriental Trading Co. Multicolor Glass Icicle, 12 ct, due to their simplicity and lack of color. The Sleetly Transparent Swirl Ornaments, 12 ct also capture a higher price than the KI Store Ball Ornaments, 34 ct because each ball has hand-painted swirls on the surface.

More to Explore

Although no one knows for certain, ornaments were believed to have originated from Germany in the 16th century. This makes sense since the famous German holiday market, known as Christkindlesmarkt, sold decorations and ornaments. The market first opened in 1570.

Today, we have many different types of ornaments for the tree, but the traditional ball ornaments were some of the first to appear on the tree. The Germans called them baubles. In the beginning, they were made of glass. But today, a great deal of ornaments are made from plastic. This is to prevent shattering in the event that the ornaments are accidentally dropped.

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