The new-look Barbie is revealed with multiple body shapes and 30 different hair colors in 24 styles
Barbie, the world’s most famous doll, has a new body. In fact, she has three new bodies — petite, tall and curvy. Some 57 years after the impossibly busty and narrow-waist, blue-eyed Barbie doll was first introduced, California-based toy maker Mattel on Thursday released the new models, which it says better reflect a changing world.
Mattel, the creator of the toys, said the new range – which also boasts seven different skin tones – was designed to promote a healthy and realistic body image and would better reflect the diversity of those who play with the dolls.
Changes over the years have included adding a belly button, a flexible waist, and bendable knees, but this is the first time Mattel has introduced new body shapes.
Parents and feminists have long criticized Barbie’s original shape as setting an unrealistic body image for girls, despite modifications over the years.
Evelyn Mazzocco, senior vice president and global general manager of the Barbie brand said, “We are excited to literally be changing the face of the brand.”
“These new dolls represent a line that is more reflective of the world girls see around them – the variety in body type, skin tones and style allows girls to find a doll that speaks to them,” she added.
Richard Dickson, president and chief operating officer of Mattel, said: “For more than 55 years, Barbie has been a global, cultural icon and a source of inspiration and imagination to millions of girls around the world. Barbie reflects the world girls see around them. Her ability to evolve and grow with the times, while staying true to her spirit, is central to why Barbie is the number one fashion doll in the world.”
The launch of the new range follows two years of declining sales of Barbie dolls around the world as girls increasingly turn to other dolls, electronic toys and tablets.
In October, the company reported that worldwide Barbie sales fell 4% in the third quarter of 2015. And company’s stock price was down nearly 43% from its 2013 peak.
The new Barbie, costing $9.99, are available online at Barbie.com now and will be sold in toy retailers around the world from March 1. And a total of 33 different dolls will be added to the Barbie collection by the end of the year.