Top 20 Best Magical Girl Anime Of All Time

Let's have a look at the best magical girls anime ever! Starring superhero girls who can kick evil’s butt and have been empowering young girls from generation, to generation, over the past few decades. Here are an absolute ton of super cool shows and new icons to ship!

Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 20. Senki Zesshou Symphogear Anime - a mecha-mahou shoujo-idol hybrid anime that has all the best parts of a magical girl, idol and mecha anime, with super awesome transformations! Tsubasa Kazanari and Kanade Amou are the idol duo known Zwei Wing, who fight against evil force 'The Noise', using their songs to power ancient weapons. This anime is perfect for anyone who enjoyed JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure and wants to up their ante with singing teenagers and bombastic rocket launchers.
 

Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 19. Revolutionary Girl Utena Anime - with action and dark symbolism, Revolutionary Girl Utena is incredible for its sheer amount of detail which means that however many times you watch it, you find different easter eggs every time. Here we meet Utena, a girl who yearns to be a prince after encountering one royalty as a child. She meets a damsel named Anthy, and vows to win her hand, thus becoming a prince. She also has a feature in Best Tomboy Anime characters - go check it out!


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 18. Magical Princess Minky Momo Anime - a wonderful Japanese magical girl anime that is old school, it came out back in the '80s, but really is a must watch! It remains a beloved series even to young anime fans. If you remember watching this as a kid, go and rewatch it again! You’d be surprised at how many jokes and puns went over your head when you were a kid! 


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 17. Tokyo Mew Mew Anime - one of the coolest magical girl animes ever! One by one we meet five girls who each have special powers according to their secret animal identity. They have to defend their world, cope with growing as a teenager and struggle to keep their identities secret too! There are so many layers to this and it's so interesting seeing the characters interact as they find each other and their transformations are so, so cool! 


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 16. Pretear Anime - a girl named Himeno is chosen to be the princess of the light by The Leafé Knights in order to save the world. It's so lovely to see a girl who’s constantly bullied transform in to her own incredible heroine in order to save the world. It's said to be a little like Snow White meets Cinderella, but is a breath of fresh air with just the right mix of drama, action, comedy, and romance. A magical adventure!   
 

Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
15. Fate/kaleid liner Prisma Illya Anime - this super magical girl anime stars Illyasviel von Einzbern, a normal schoolgirl in Japan who fancifully dreams of using magic... but it's sooo much more. After a few arcs you will find yourself subjected to unwitting philosophy lessons around evey corner. It questions just what makes a person, and it's so interesting to watch characters face impossible decisions like whether or not they’d be able to destroy all of humanity just for one person. It's one anime series that will definitely keep you up at night!


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 14. Houkago no Pleiades Anime - a typical magical girl anime but with a very unique backdrop! Space meets aliens, meets magic as we follow a group of girls searching for pieces of a spaceship. It's a whole mystery and guessing game - that’s exactly the charm of this magical girl anime. It's so much fun as we are immediately thrown in to the middle of the action and are merely tagging along on this crazy ride, but it will be worth it when you realise what is happening! 


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 13. Black Rock Shooter Anime - even though CG animation is really not for everyone, this magical girl anime boasts an intricate storyline revolving around multiple realities - we meet our black-haired heroine with the mysterious blue eyes and cannons that can shoot rocks (hence the title). It’s all kinds of weird and crazy, with some clever mega plot twists!


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 12. Magic Knight Rayearth Anime - with parallel world fantasy elements, this 90s anime does a clever job of injecting realism to the world of magical anime. It can be gritty at times and explore themes of suffering in all kinds of ways, but it really makes it all the more realistic, or rather, relatable. An interesting reveal awaits you, in terms of the villain in the story and the damsel in distress. Definitely one to watch!


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 11. Little Witch Academia Anime - there’s something so lovely about the character development in this addictive yet wholesome, epic magical girl anime. We get to see each character find herself and grow in confidence, it's a super magical coming of age anime! There's something so fun about a rookie, clumsy witch who hasn’t quite discovered the limits of her powers yet. It can be silly and funny, yet loveable and even relatable too, even though it's a magical anime!


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 10. Pretty Cure Anime - a real classic and popular anime with an incredible 600 episodes to its name! We follow a group of magical warrior girls known as Pretty Cures who battle against evil forces. There is so much to it, it's unreal and it has gone in so many different ways since its conception in 2004. Which is the best season to watch? Try starting with either HeartCatch, Smile!, or Go! Princess Precure. 


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 9. Sugar Sugar Rune Anime - set in what appears to be a world full of cotton candy, this anime is soo much cooler and deeper than how it looks from the outside! We follow two ten-year-old witches, best friends Chocolat and Vanilla, who journey from their home in the magical world to the human world to compete for who will be crowned queen. To do this they must capture the hearts of boys and whoever collects the most will be crowned queen. It's a kind of introductory course to the complexity of human emotions! You’ll get swept away and end up heavily emotionally invested in to the journey of two witches who are out there collecting hearts.


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 8. Ojamajo Doremi Anime - one that is super fun, easygoing, endearing and lighthearted! It serves us a fresh take on witches, where we meet Harukaze Doremi, who just longs to wave a magic wand to make her life better. We follow her as she learns to become a witch, with all kinds of funny mishaps as she goes. The girls are seen doing mundane stuff, safe and carefree in their own little world and there is little fighting or deep action scenes, it's a lovely slice-of-life for mahou sojou fans who are so used to girls having to save the world and would love a fresh and funny take on what it takes to be a witch.


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 7. Princess Tutu Anime - we walk in to a real life fairytale with talking cats and crocodiles! It's also a little like the story of the ugly duckling who turns into a pretty swan, Princess Tutu is actually about a duck who transforms into a talented prima ballerina, who helps people through her awesome dance moves! And of course, Princess Tutu has a mission: to collect her beloved’s heart. A really fun fairytale magical girl adventure anime! It's innocent and fun with plenty of comedy, action, and romance, a wonderful classic anime tale!


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 6. Mermaid Melody Pichi Pichi Pitch Anime - we meet mermaid princess of the North Pacific, Lucia, who entrusts a magical pearl to a boy - who unfortunately falls overboard a ship one night! She must now travel to the human realm to search for her pearl and to protect the mermaid realms and kingdoms. For most of the show we see our three heroines Lucia, Hanon, and Rina fighting villains with the power of song - as they are mermaids or 'sirens' after all! In this anime, the fighting is done with the power of their voices. It may be a little over the top but an incredible amount of fun with the catchiest songs to have ever featured in an anime, you will know all the words years later!



Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 5. Shugo Chara Anime - we meet Amu Hinamori, who kind of lives a secret life. She plays a cool and spicy extroverted girl as a student at Seiyo Elementary, but is secretly an incredibly unsure and easily intimidated girl on the inside - a little like the double lives our Best Otaku girls in Anime often lead! Little does she know, she's about to meet her Guardian Characters. Together they help Amu understand her would-be self and gives her the courage to reach her full potential. This is a great coming of age anime series that explores the concept of finding your true self on the path of improvement and growing up. 


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 4. Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Anime - a normal girl called Nanoha one day discovers an injured ferret named Yuuno one day after school… who just so happens to be an archaeologist from another world! Yuuno gives Nanoha a red jewel that enables her to transform and use magic. Teaching her to be a powerful mage, the creature then asks her to collect the rest of the jewel seeds scattered across the world. Even though the concept and premise kind of sounds like a typical magical anime, the story evolves into a much darker, complicated story full of plot twists and side characters to love. Although intended for an older audience, this is so much fun for all ages to watch. 


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 3. Puella Magi Madoka Magica Anime - a highly rated magical girl anime that explores the darker side of magic! We meet Madoka Kaname and Sayaka Miki, two normal girls that one day encounter a cat like magical familiar, named Kyuubey along with new transfer student Homura Akemi, and are plunged in to a magical adventure. The familiar, Kyuubey, offers them what seems like an incredible opportunity, he will grant any one of their wishes and in exchange they will each become an uber powerful magical girl. It sounds like a dream come true, but all is not what it seems! It seems a little mysterious how new friend Homura Akemi, a magical girl herself, is adamant in warning them to refuse the offer. This series is super unique in that it challenges every preconceived notion of what a magical girl is and explores the darker side of this concept. 


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 2. Cardcaptor Sakura Anime - one of the best mahou shoujo anime produced! CardCaptor Sakura is such a popular and successful series that has retained its popularity across generations. The story follows normal girl Sakura Kinomoto, who has a secret crush on her brother’s friend. But everything changes when Sakura accidentally releases magical and powerful Clow Cards, a little like Pandora's box. After that, she must collect them all and return them! This is a perfect series to break you in to magical girl anime and to introduce you to the genre and all its craziness: transformations, classical elements, and magical sidekicks like Keroberos. Completely perfect for anyone who loves the magical girl vibe. 


Best Magical Girl Anime and Characters
 1. Sailor Moon Anime - if you're a magical girl anime fan, look no further than Sailor Moon, the pinnacle of magical girl anime! As one of the pioneers of the genre itself, Sailor Moon set such a high standard for what a magical anime should be about. With 200 episodes part of its original franchise and three movies, several specials, and a live-action TV series under its belt, it stars magical girl sailor scouts Usagi, Ami, Rei, Makato, Minako, Chibiusa, Setsuna, Haruka, Michiru and Hotaru, who are destined to ward off evil (and who everyone secretly wants to be). They also wear the most adorable schoolgirl outfits even seen. It’s empowering, magnificent, kickass and more! Also be sure to check out the Sailor Moon fandom!

Hungry for more anime to watch? (I know you are!) Come and see my Top Fantasy Anime picks and Best Underrated Anime of all Time! 

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