After World War II, American toy makers embraced plastics as the magic material of the modern age--and why not? For years toy makers struggled with mass producing toys out of woods, cast iron, sheet metals, and tin. Each material presented its own disadvantages, many of which plastics avoided or overcame. With a process that used heat and pressure, toy makers molded plastic into intricate shapes with minute details--a production feature difficult to achieve with woods and metals. Unlike painted toys, the colors in plastics were embedded in the material itself and were less likely to chip, fade, or peel off. Toys made of plastic had a durability that some toys of woods and metals did not have. And, the lightness of plastic toys better suited toddlers and younger children who lacked the developed muscles and coordination to handle heavy toys. The new material's lightness also decreased shipping costs, making plastic toys cheaper to purchase. And best of all, perhaps from a parent's point of view, Mom could wash plastic toys easily, making the toys more hygienic, especially for young kids. For the toy world of the mid-20th century, plastics, indeed, seemed like a high-tech wonder.