She’s nearly 60 years old but Barbie has barely changed at all. Until now. After years of demands, Mattel is finally answering the public’s
complaints requests and announced Thursday that their iconic signature doll is going to look a whole lot different in 2016 and onward.
“Yes, some people will say we are late to the game,” Evelyn Mazzocco, head of the Barbie brand, told Time magazine. “But changes at a huge corporation take time.”
A world where Barbie is evolving? Yes, that’s a world we want our girls to live in. Naturally, Barbie will still come in her standard form — blonde, statuesque, busty, teeny-waisted — but she will soon be made available in curvy, petite and tall(er) versions. For instance, the waist of the curvier Barbie won’t be as waspish and she will also have fuller hips and calves. LIKE A REAL PERSON.
These new body shapes will only expand on what Mattel did in 2015, when they added different skin tones, facial features and hair colours and textures to their dolls. As with American Girl dolls, every child that plays with Barbie might just find one that’s more similar to themselves now. Gone is the one and only option of the past.
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Better late than never. Because we need to teach our girls — and remind ourselves — that everyone is different and that we need to be proud of those differences. Hopefully, with these new Barbies, the discussion about body image and acceptance will be more a positive one. Um, now what about Ken?