British parents’ peculiar keepsakes: Teeth, locks, and tiny treasures

British parents' peculiar keepsakes: Teeth, locks, and tiny treasures.

British parents' peculiar keepsakes: Teeth, locks, and tiny treasures. Image: Billywolf /

What keepsakes do British parents cherish from their children’s early years?

For many parents, a familiar ritual involves sneaking into their child’s bedroom at night to discreetly swap a lost milk tooth for a small monetary reward.

But what becomes of these tiny treasures once retrieved?

For a significant number of parents, the answer is clear: they keep them!

According to a recent YouGov survey, one in three British parents (33 per cent) still holds onto their children’s milk teeth somewhere in their homes.

Among parents with children under 18, this number rises to 48 per cent, while 26 per cent of parents with adult children have preserved these dental mementoes.

Other Mementoes

Similarly, an equal proportion of parents (33 per cent) have safeguarded a lock of their child’s hair, while 24 per cent possess a keepsake mould of their baby’s hand or footprints.

Interestingly, more parents opt to preserve representations of their children rather than tangible parts of them.

Nearly all parents (97 per cent) report holding onto photographs of their young offspring, with 69 per cent also possessing video footage.

Given the increased accessibility of video camera technology today, it’s not surprising that parents with children under 18 are more likely (93 per cent) to have videos compared to those whose children are adults (56 per cent).

In addition to preserving memories in visual form, a majority of parents (74 per cent) have chosen to permanently keep their children’s artwork, including 66 per cent of parents whose children are now adults.

Furthermore, a significant portion of parents (58 per cent) have retained some of their children’s toys from their early years, while 43 per cent still possess items of their children’s baby clothing.

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Written by

Anna Ellis

Originally from Derbyshire, Anna has lived in the middle of nowhere on the Costa Blanca for 19 years. She is passionate about her animal family including four dogs and four horses, musicals and cooking.