The Short of It
Mattel has finally introduced Barbies with a variety of more realistic body types—tall, petite, and curvy.
It's about time! Last year Mattel introduced nearly two dozen "Fashionista" dolls with different skin colors, facial structures, hairstyles, hair colors, and eye colors. Today, they added tall, petite, and curvy body types to the list.
"We proudly add three new body types to our line," Mattel announced via Twitter. "Meet the new dolls. #TheDollEvolves."
Along with the new models, the company released a video to give us some insight into the reason behind the change. "Girls everywhere now have infinitely more ways to play out their stories and spark their imaginations through Barbie," the company said on its website.
Called "The Doll Evolves," the clip opens with the voiceover of a young girl: "It's important for Barbies to look different," she says. "You know... like the real people in the world."
We couldn't agree more!
The new dolls are catching attention all over, including from Time magazine. In a reference to the controversy that has followed Barbie and her unrealistic body type to date, the curvy doll will be featured on Time's Feb. 6 cover with the headline: "'Now can we stop talking about my body?' What Barbie's new shape says about American beauty." The Barbie Twitter page has promoted the cover with this comment: "What a powerful moment and this is just the beginning..."
We hope so.
Their faces may still resemble picture-perfect Disney princesses, but we have to admit it's pretty amazing to see Barbie finally make a move toward diversification, and help teach young girls to be more accepting of their bodies.
"We have to let girls know that is doesn't matter what shape you come in," said Tania Missad, Director of Consumer Insights. "That anything is possible."