Best Jigsaw Puzzles: Top 5 Brain Benders Most Recommended By Experts

Our lives are consumed by endless hours of screen time. Whether we are scrolling on our phones, binge-watching the latest shows, or playing online games, there’s no doubt technology consumes a majority of our downtime. If you’re looking for a way to keep yourself entertained while detoxing from your devices, a jigsaw puzzle can keep you happily occupied for hours! That had us wondering — of the millions of choices out there, which are the very best jigsaw puzzles, at least according to experts?

Now, you might be saying, that’s child’s play. Well, yes, it is. Research suggests jigsaw puzzles do serve as a simple way to measure a child’s development milestones.  But, did you know jigsaw puzzles have many mental health benefits for adults as well? 

According to Fortune, “Studies have shown that jigsaw puzzles can help improve visual-spatial reasoning, short-term memory, and problem-solving skills as well as combat cognitive decline, which can reduce risk of developing dementia. There are also mental health benefits to puzzling.” A recent study also found that older adults doing web-based crossword puzzles showed greater improvement than those training their brain with video games.

That being said, doing any type of puzzle over spending your time glued to a screen may prove beneficial in the long run. So, are you ready to dive into some of the best puzzles for grown-ups? StudyFinds compiled a list of the top five most recommended brain benders from ten expert websites, to find the best adult jigsaw puzzles on the shelves. As always, we’d like to see your own recommendations in the comments below!

Giant jigsaw puzzle
Giant jigsaw puzzle (Photo by Diva Plavalaguna on Pexels)

The List: The Best Jigsaw Puzzles for Adults, Top 5 According to Expert Reviews


1. Areaware Gradient Puzzle

This puzzle comes in 100, 500, and 1000-piece versions and in multiple hues depending on what type of challenge you are up for. It’s listed as one of the “Best Puzzles to Gift” on Forbes, which adds: “Locating the position of each piece based on the subtle color differences is meant to feel deliberate and meditative, a much-needed departure from that mindless afternoon social media scroll.”

Areaware Gradient Puzzle in Blue/Green
Areaware Gradient Puzzle in Blue/Green

Plus, this isn’t something that has to end up shoved in a closet when you’re finished assembling. Dwell put the Areaware Gradient Puzzle on its rankings of “Puzzles That Double as Works of Art When You Are Done With Them.”

This striking puzzle is as vibrant as it is challenging. The ombre shades of pink, orange and yellow will capture your mind and the end result is so satisfying,” adds Today.

2. Piecework Puzzles Meta Puzzle

Do you remember that TV episode of “Seinfeld” where the plot was about a coffee table book about coffee tables? Let me introduce you to a puzzle along those same lines. Meta Puzzle depicts a woman, you guessed it, doing a puzzle. 

Piecework Puzzles Meta Puzzle
Piecework Puzzles Meta Puzzle ( rates this puzzle as its “Best Puzzle-Within-A-Puzzle,” making its list of “Best Puzzles to Keep You Challenged.”

Moreover, Dwell says this 1000-piece puzzle is “for anyone who has ever questioned the meaning of life. The ultimate ode to the art of a puzzle, this one takes our love of jigsaws to new dimensions. With luck, you just might find the answer in the pieces.”

Town & Country Magazine writes: “Don’t think too hard about this Meta Puzzle, as in, a puzzle of a woman doing a puzzle, it will make your head spin! But that’s what makes it the perfect gift for the extreme puzzler in your life.”

3. Uncommon Goods Geode Puzzle

If you are looking for a one-of-a-kind jigsaw puzzle, then Geode Puzzle could be exactly what you want to try. Robb Report touts the Geode Puzzle as one of its “10 High-End Jigsaw Puzzles to Give You a Much-Needed Break From Your Screens.” They write: “From the overall shape and the lush colors to the cut of each piece, every one of these unique puzzles from Somerville, Massachusetts, is different. And if all that wasn’t intriguing enough, they’re also fiendishly difficult to complete.”

Uncommon Goods Geode Puzzle
Uncommon Goods Geode Puzzle (

The material the Geode Puzzle is crafted from, also lends to its individuality. “Uniquely shaped pieces made from birch plywood come together to make a beautiful geode. Choose from three colors for a slightly different puzzle that range from 160 to 180 pieces, depending on the style. A computer-guided laser cutter shapes the puzzle pieces, so they are randomized and unique to their puzzle,” says The Spruce.

4. Galison Astrology Puzzle

Is an out-of-this-world jigsaw puzzle more your speed? Then this foil puzzle featuring astrological star signs may be the right fit. Making Cosmopolitan’s list of “40 Best Puzzles for Adults to Wind Down in Style,” their review notes, “This stylish puzzle for adults features the twelve signs of the zodiac. Super stylish, the jigsaw offers a cosmic sparkle and shimmer and has a gold foil embellishment. You’ll also find fun astrological facts and the beautiful box makes it an ideal puzzle for gifting.”

Galison Astrology Puzzle
Galison Astrology Puzzle

If you love astrology, you’ll definitely enjoy building this colorful jigsaw puzzle with 1,000 pieces. The stunning colors and details make it all the better,” says the New York Post.

5. Practically Impossible Clear Jigsaw Puzzle

If your idea of fun is an ultimate, expert-level jigsaw puzzle challenge, then keep reading.  The Practically Impossible Clear Jigsaw Puzzle will no doubt keep you busy trying to link together all of its clear pieces.

Practically Impossible Clear Jigsaw Puzzle
Practically Impossible Clear Jigsaw Puzzle

Sit back, take a deep breath, and get ready to tackle this challenging puzzle. Featuring 70 clear puzzle pieces, you’ll have to think spatially to figure out how each piece fits perfectly together based on its shape. If you get stuck, this puzzle comes with cheat sheets that offer increasing levels of assistance,” according to The Spruce.

Today says this challenging set is “designed for those with all the patience in the world. Are you up for the test?”

If you succeed in solving it, you won’t get a full-color photograph or a soothing landscape to display on your coffee table. Instead, you’ll have a 10-by-12-inch clear rectangle and the satisfaction of conquering the near-impossible,” writes Mental Floss.

Happy puzzling!

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Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations.

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About the Author

Melissa Kraus

Melissa is a freelance writer, based out of New Jersey. She has over two-decades of writing, editing, and producing experience for Radio, TV, and Digital Media.

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