Barbie – In 1959 we meet her, she’s leggy, busty with an unfathomably tiny waist, standing at a height of 11.5 inches, an introductory television commercial airs with a catchy jingle, singing the words,

“…Barbie you’re beautiful…
Some day I’m gonna be exactly like you,

til then I know just what I’ll do,

Barbie, beautiful Barbie,

I’ll make believe that I am you”

And just like that little girls all over the US are hooked! I guess the flaw in the plan of having little girls aspiring to be exactly like Barbie comes about when you use a ratio of 1/6 and discover that Barbie’s rocks a 36in (bust), 18in (waist) and 33in (hips), oh and she’s about 5ft 9”. Not even the beautiful Victoria Secret models have this kind body frame!

Barbie 1

Now being part of an industry that could easily be (and has been) accused of playing on women’s insecurities in order to sell things, I do have moments of guilt, but then I think of something like the Dove Real Beauty campaign as an example where it’s not all bad! A campaign that celebrates the raw and real beauty of many women, with all different shapes and sizes.

Barbie 2

It seems now Barbie has possibly taken a leaf out of Dove’s book and turned a corner in listening to this new generation of millennial mums with their upcoming new range of dolls for 2016.

Barbie will now have three new bodies — curvy, tall and petite, she will also come in seven skin tones, 22 eye colours and 24 hairstyles.

Barbie 3

 

Carla Raines

Project Director

26/5/16