“They’re so ugly that they’re cute!”

You’ve heard that before. You may have even said it a few times. That’s the premise behind Uglydolls, stuffed animal monsters that are so ugly, that you just know that kids are going to love them. Created by Dave Horvath and Sun-Min Kim in 2001, these 12″ plush critters sell for around 20 dollars (lately, smaller versions have been released that sell for less) and they’ve been cropping up on the outer fringes of “cool” culture for the last couple of years. Debra Messing, Robin Williams, Nelly and designer Todd Oldham have all been spotted toting these lovable beasties.

There are a dozen Uglydolls, with names like “Wage,” “Ice-Bat” and the inseparable “Bop and Beep.” You can read their individual profiles at the Uglydoll website. Kids love ugly toys, and Uglydolls have the added appeal of being a hot pop culture item, too. In addition to the basic plush, you can now find vinyl versions of the Uglydolls and even Uglydog.

Google will take you to several dozen online retailers that sell Uglydolls, but locally, you can find them at Kid Country Toys. Go hunt them down. Ugly is the new pretty.