Barbie manufacturer Mattel has just launched a new line of dolls which include one without hair and one with the skin condition vitiligo.
Set to be released in 2020, Mattel hopes that they will “represent global diversity and inclusivity” as well as showcasing “a multi-dimensional view of beauty”.
In order to design the Barbie with vitiligo, Mattel worked alongside a dermatologist to ensure they accurately represented it. They added that the new design would allow children to “play out even more stories they see in the world around them”.
In addition, the inclusion of the bald Barbie is important to the company too. Mattel say that they hope it will resonate with any child who is experiencing hair loss, and that they will be able to see themselves “reflected in the line”.
This year will also see an update of a Barbie with a prosthetic limb. In 2019, they introduced dolls, which reflect permanent disabilities. They collaborated with 12-year-old Jordan Reeves, who has a prosthetic arm, and is on a mission to help other children with disabilities.
Mattel’s inclusive campaign has seen Barbie dolls which come in five body types, 22 skin tones, 76 hair styles, 94 hair colours and 13 eye colours.
It’s not just Barbie either, as Ken dolls are now seeing a lot more inclusivity in their designs. You can now buy four different body types, 13 skin tones, 9 eye colours and 22 hair colours.
Barbie’s Instagram page is now flooded with positive role models for children everywhere, reflecting a range of different careers as well as physical appearance.
Last year, they showcased their Astronaut Barbie to celebrate the first All Woman Spacewalk. The doll is available as part of their You Can Be Anything Range.
The caption read, ‘We’re over-the-moon as we celebrate @Astro_Christina and @Astro_Jessica for taking part in the first #AllWomanSpacewalk in human history, and paving the way for all girls! #YouCanBeAnything #MoreRoleModels’
Mattel is also challenging sexist stereotypes that were once associated with Barbie dolls, by offering much more diverse options for children everywhere.
The brand offers over 200 different careers for children to choose from including a lawyer, a chef, a veterinarian, a pilot and more.
Kim Culmone, senior vice president of Mattel’s doll design, said the new, inclusive toys are a “reflection of culture”. She added that it was “time to create a doll line free of labels”.
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