Bigger feet, more ethnicities, different hair textures and colors, and new skin tones, Mattel and Barbie are striving to make changes and take steps to have the iconic “Barbie” reflect today’s society and I am soooo intrigued by this major shift for them. Today, Barbie announces three new body shapes and a plethora of ethnicities to its current lineup and I am curious about this change and had to let you know about this!
Time Inc shares that “Faced with changes in beauty ideals, shifting demographics and ongoing criticism of Barbie’s impossible proportions, Mattel decided to remake the iconic blonde. The new body shapes follow the addition of new skin tones and hair textures in 2015.”
Now, the auntie in me is hyped. The plus size blogger in me is curious. And the woman I am is appreciative.
“They’ll all be called Barbie, but it’s the curvy one—with meat on her thighs and a protruding tummy and behind—that marks the most startling change to the most infamous body in the world.”
How did this change come about? Well, Time magazine shares that this was a top secret two-year project called Project Dawn. And knowing where and how Barbie resonated in the minds of women today, Kim Culmone, head of design, posed a challenge to her team:
“If you could design Barbie today, how would you make her a reflection of the times?”
And what did we get? A mountain of perfectly timed changes:
- Barbie’s face to have less makeup and look younger
- Giving her articulated ankles so she could wear flats as well as heels
- Giving her new skin tones to add diversity
- And most importantly, changing the body
How can you get your hands on one of these dolls? Well, today, sales kick off and these newer Barbie’s will exclusively on Barbie.com at first while it “negotiates with retailers for extra shelf space to make room for the new bodies and their clothes alongside the original.” Business first, I get it! But what intrigues me are the varied hues of brown- INCLUSIVE of African American, Asian, Latino, and Middle Eastern women. THIS makes me happy. Not only do you have your choice of hues, but you also can play with her hair texture, haircuts, and if you notice, their eyes too!
Take a peek at the making of these new Barbie Dolls, I am so intrigued about this long-awaited and much-needed change!
I will not lie, I do wish that Curvy Barbie was more… plus, but I do appreciate the newer silhouette and the changes that have been made. As they get the feedback, I do hope that they opt to add a few more pounds to the curvy Barbie. But in the meantime, the changes made are a great first step (however late it is) for them to step into the modern times!
But do you want to see them? I have a few images and stylings of the new Curvy Barbie to share! Here you go!
Mattel Introduces the Curvy Barbie
Kind of cool huh? BLUE HAIR!?!? Yes.
There is sooo much more to the story and I invite you to read the rest over on Time.com where they go into the focus groups, sales, and more of the motivation about this.