- When purchasing a new Christmas tree topper, there are several things to keep in mind, which we detail below. I’ve always enjoyed looking for the most unique, easiest to position, and best value tree toppers for myself and others.
- Whether you love an angel, traditional star, or something unique, we have the best Christmas tree topper for you.
- For more Christmas decorations, check out our guides for the best ornaments for your tree and the best tree skirts you can buy.
A Christmas tree topper holds a special place in holiday decorating. It is the crowning touch to the centerpiece of the season, the Christmas tree.
You may love a star like the Bailey family in “It’s a Wonderful Life” or use a cherished family heirloom. I tend to change my tree topper every year or so depending on my mood. While I use many of the same ornaments that I have collected every year because they bring back such strong memories, I like switch out different tree toppers.
When purchasing a new topper, there are several things to keep in mind:
Style: Choose a topper that complements the style and profile of your tree. A star or angel looks good on a conical, full tree. A spire or elongated topper is perfect for a slim, pencil tree.
Height: Know the height of your tree and your ceiling. As a rule, the tree topper should have at least 5 inches of space between it and the ceiling. For example:
- Height of tree: 4 to 5.5 feet
- Recommended topper height: 5 inches
- Recommended topper width: 3 inches
- Height of tree: 6 to 6.5 feet
- Recommended topper height: 7 inches
- Recommended topper width: 5 inches
- Height of tree: 7 to 7.5 feet
- Recommended topper height: 4 inches
- Recommended topper width: 4 inches
Support: Determine if your tree can support the weight of your chosen tree topper. Glass toppers are usually the heaviest with paper, plastic, and ribbon toppers the lightest.
Installation: Once you get your topper home, it’s time to make sure it is going to stay in place and not tumble to the floor or topple your entire tree. I’ve had many a tilted topper and even a horizontal tree a couple of times. Both artificial and natural treetops can be reinforced with dowels to make them more sturdy. With artificial trees, several branches can be tied together to support heavier toppers. Use green floral tape to cover any wires or ties to give the tree a more natural look.
Safety: Always think safety first when placing the topper. Use a good stepladder and have someone hold the trunk of the tree in place as you add the topper. If the topper is lighted, use a UL-tested extension cord and weave it through the branches to prevent accidents. Consider using a nonbreakable topper if small children and climbing pets have access to the tree.
I’ve always enjoyed looking for the most unique, easiest to position, and best value tree toppers for myself and others. Read on in the slides below to discover our top picks in Christmas tree toppers for every decorating style.
Here are the best Christmas tree toppers you can buy:
- Best angel tree topper: Etsy Silk Waldorf Angel
- Best star tree topper: Lenox Glass Star
- Best illuminated tree topper: Mr. Christmas Revolving Santa Biplane
- Best traditional glass tree topper: Pier 1 Mercury Glass Finial
- Best unique tree topper: Etsy Family Name Custom Tree Topper
Updated on 12/05/2019 by Lisa Sabatini: Updated prices and links.
The best angel tree topper
Hand-crafted in silk and wool, this Silk Waldorf Angel Tree Topper from Etsy can be custom-made according to the size and hair color you desire.
I am always in awe of the talented people who sell their wares on Etsy, and it is there that I found my Custom Silk Waldorf Angel Tree Topper by artist Holly Shabtai.
Each angel is made with a wool body handcrafted from the fleece of New Mexico sheep and then topped with woolen and silk needle-felted fibers. There are poseable wire arms and wings, and the height can be customized from 10 inches to 22 inches. (For a tree topper, a 10-inch angel works best for the majority of tree heights.) You can work with Holly to select the hair color and accessories that make each angel unique.
While the angel has an opening that fits beautifully over the top branch of a tree, it can also be used as a centerpiece or part of a display. Angels are one of the two most popular tree toppers in the United States.
Nearly every one of Shabtai’s reviews on Etsy gives her five stars, many citing her excellent craftsmanship. My angel brings me joy each time I see her ethereal beauty.
Pros: Handmade with natural fibers, available in a range of sizes, customizable, free shipping
Cons: Shipping is one to two weeks after the order is placed
The best star tree topper
The Lenox Glass Star is a classic tree topper that can become an heirloom Christmas piece.
Along with the angel, the star is one of the most popular tree toppers. Stars come in every iteration from simple five-points to intricate designs. The star can be flat or three-dimensional and made from paper, plastic, glass, metal, or wood. The Lenox Glass Star, which is brand new this year, combines frosted glass and metal to create a contemporary but classic star that will be gracing my tree this year
Like many star toppers, the Lenox Star is mounted on a spiral metal base. A spiral or conical base is easily adjusted to accommodate different-size tree branches. The star is 12.5-inches high from base to top tip and created from pieces of frosted glass fitted into a three-dimensional gold wire frame. Behind the glass star is a more contemporary star-burst sculpture made of gold metal. I love the juxtaposition of the two styles.
The star is translucent enough that I can place lights from the tree behind it to provide a glow without the need for a separate cord or outlet.
While I don’t plan to return my star, Lenox offers a Breakage Replacement Program that guarantees that an item can be returned within 120 days for a replacement piece or refund.
Pros: Combines contemporary and traditional design, easy to attach to treetop, excellent return policy
Cons: Glass is breakable
The best illuminated tree topper
The Mr. Christmas Revolving Santa Biplane navigates by the bright North Star to help Santa deliver presents for under the tree.
Who couldn’t “Believe” after seeing Santa guided by the North Star circling the top of your tree in his biplane as he tows a holiday banner? This Mr. Christmas animated tree topper is one of the newest and cutest illuminated toppers on the market.
I had to get one for my 2-year-old grandson’s tree. He loves the movement, the lights, the plane, and of course, Santa. The star is around 8-inches wide and is lit by LED lights. Santa circles in his biplane as he tows a glittery message of “Believe”.
The topper easily attaches to the tree with a unique two-band Velcro system. Simply insert Santa’s guidewire between the pole and plane, and he is ready to fly. The topper is powered with an AC adapter that is plugged into an outlet and comes with an on/off switch. The topper is 20-inches tall from the base to the point of the star but can be positioned to nestle down in the tree or soar a bit higher.
Santa’s biplane is brand new this year, but if you prefer his traditional sleigh, Mr. Christmas has you covered.
Pros: Animated and illuminated, quiet motor, easy to assemble, adjustable to the height of the treetop, 90-day warranty
Cons: Star will not illuminate separately
The best traditional glass tree topper
- Pier 1
The Pier 1 Mercury Glass Finial Tree Topper puts the final exclamation point on your holiday decor.
If you are looking for an elegant finish to your tree decorations, look no further than the Pier 1 Mercury Glass Finial Tree Topper. Following the tradition of the German-made, hand-blown glass finials of the 19th century, this piece adds shimmer, height, and refined taste to any tree.
This new topper style from Pier 1 is handcrafted from mercury glass, embellished with a bit of raised glass glittery mistletoe, and measures 15.75 inches in height and 3.54 inches in diameter. It is interesting to note that the glass, also known as silvered glass, does not contain mercury or silver. It is simply clear glass that is mold-blown with a double wall and coated on the inside with a silvery component.
The finial slips over the center branch of the tree to catch the twinkle of the tree lights. I have several tree topper finials that I have collected and used over the years. When I change tree themes, I group the finials on a tabletop or mantle for a holiday arrangement.
Pros: Beautiful, lightweight, easy to place on the tree, can be used for tabletop decoration
The best unique tree topper
What could be more unique than topping the tree with a personalized Family Name Tree Topper?
I know that when I want something unique, I should turn to Etsy, and that’s where I found Daisy Santiago’s Blue Brides Family Name Tree Topper.
I wanted to give a newlywed couple something special for their first Christmas tree together, and this topper did not disappoint. Handmade in North Carolina from lightweight aluminum wire, each topper is customized to the name you desire.
Most of the toppers measure about 7.5 inches to 8 inches wide and around 4.5 inches tall and are attached to a 4-inch spiral base. The base slips easily over the top branch of the tree. Since these are custom-made, you can choose almost any color of wire from traditional silver or gold; to red, pink, or blue; to my personal favorites, copper or rose gold.
The work will be ready in three to five days and shipped free directly to your home. Prices vary depending upon the length of the last name.
Pros: Custom-made for each order, lightweight, easy to install
Cons: Creation and shipping can take up to two weeks
Check out our other great holiday guides
We’ve gathered up an array of Christmas tree decorations to make your home festive for the holidays. Whether it’s an 8-foot ceiling duster, a tiny tabletop tree, or any size in between, an unadorned conifer is merely a houseplant, not a Christmas tree.
Here are the best Christmas tree decorations you can buy:
- Best clear traditional tree lights: Prextex 100-count Christmas Lights
- Best colored tree lights: Brizled LED Mini String Lights
- Best bubble lights for the tree: Novelty Lights Bubble Set
- Best personalized ornament: Winter Family Ornament
- Best blown-glass ornament: Christmas Sloth
- Best felted-wool ornaments: Christmas Mice
- Best ball ornaments: Knit Ball Ornaments
- Best wooden ornaments: Wooden Heart Ornaments
- Best faux-fur tree skirt: Snowy White Faux Fur Christmas Tree Skirt
- Best traditional tree skirt: Holiday Plaid Christmas Tree Skirt
- Best knit tree skirt: Reversible Fair Isle Christmas Tree Skirt
- Best elegant tree skirt: Valery Madelyn Gold Christmas Tree Skirt
A beautifully decorated home is part of the wonder of the holiday season. We’ve rounded up the best decorating essentials for your home to make it easier for you.
That’s why we’ve gathered up the top suggestions for a wide range of Christmas décor. Whether you go all-out decorating for the holidays, or just stick with a tree covered with a few glass balls, we’ve got the best of the best for your holiday home.
Here are the best Christmas decorations you can buy:
- Best tree stand: Krinner Tree Genie Christmas Tree Stand
- Best ornaments: Shop all ornaments at Target
- Best tree topper: Christmas Snowman Tree Hugger
- Best tree skirt: Primode Holiday Images 50-Inch Tree Skirt
- Best wreath for your front door: Woodland Eucalyptus Wreath
- Best stockings: Needlepoint Stockings from L.L. Bean
- Best garland: Home Accents Holiday Pre-Lit Plaza Garland
- Best advent calendar: Byer’s Choice Christmas Tree Advent Calendar
Holiday decorations bring feelings of warmth and cheer even in the darkest and coldest days of the year. Testing, setting up, and connecting Christmas lights can be anything but a joyful experience, though.
To that end, this year I’ve worked to assemble a buying guide filled primarily with holiday lights that not only look great, but that also make your life easier.
Here are the best Christmas lights you can buy:
- Best Christmas lights overall: KooPower Waterproof Battery Fairy Lights
- Best Christmas lights: Good Tidings Light Ceramic Multi-Colored Holiday Lights
- Best solar Christmas lights: VMANOO Solar Powered String Lights
- Best mini Christmas lights: Brizled LED Mini String Christmas Lights
- Best permanent Christmas lights: Everlights Starter Kit
Tree skirts add a dash of color and style to your holiday decor while hiding away that unsightly tree stand and all the Christmas light cords.
Here are the best tree skirts you can buy:
- Best tree skirt overall: Primode Holiday Images 50-Inch Tree Skirt
- Best traditional tree skirt: Valery Madelyn 48-Inch Tree Skirt
- Best mini tree skirt: VHC Brands Burlap Mini Tree Skirt
- Best affordable tree skirt: Ivenf Christmas Tree Skirt
- Best large tree skirt: Kurt Adler Embroidered and Pleated 60-Inch Tree Skirt
The best Christmas tree stands are designed to last for many decades, have a stable base that holds plenty of water, are easy to set up, and store easily after the holidays are over.
Here are the best tree skirts you can buy:
- Best Christmas tree stand overall: Krinner Tree Genie Christmas Tree Stand
- Best screw-in Christmas tree stand: Jack-Post Welded Steel Christmas Tree Stand
- Best Christmas tree stand for artificial trees: National Tree Folding Tree Stand
- Best full-sized, live Christmas tree stand on a budget: Cinco C Express Tree Stand.