The concept of the Western standard of beauty is slowly disintegrating, and in Nigeria, that slow pace is picking up steam, all thanks to a set of dolls.
The Queens of Africa dolls and Naija Princess dolls were created by a Nigerian entrepreneur, Taofick Okoya, after he realized that his three daughters were only playing with white dolls like Barbies. Since their launch seven years ago, Queen and Princess dolls have become so popular that Okoya is selling, as he claims, 6,000 to 9,000 dolls per month, and has gained about 10-15 percent of the market. But perhaps his biggest victory? The dolls are easily outselling their Barbie counterparts being sold by Mattel. Keep reading »
We’ve all heard the criticism that Barbie dolls warp young girls’ beauty ideals, but what if those little girls got to see a Barbie with a less than perfect appearance? Paris photographer Hamid Blad wanted to take a deeper look at Barbie’s beauty (or lack thereof), so he put together his “Barbie Blad” series, which features Barbies from varying eras in a less flattering light than we’re used to seeing in the toy aisle. His goal was to illustrate the line between real and false beauty, so Blad used the 19th-century collodion image-making process for the photos, which takes longer than modern photography to expose and develop. He also incorporated a UV light that makes the dolls seem a bit less fake and cropped them tightly. Blad styled the dolls’ hair and skin as if they were real models and named them after ’70s runway icons. Keep reading »
Not only will “Normal Barbies” have the bodies of an average American woman — their skin will also look something like “normal,” too. An add-on pack will allow kids to give their dolls acne, cellulite, stretch marks and more.
Last year, artists and researcher Nickolay Lamm designed the original “Lammily” dolls, scaled to the measurements of the average 19-year-old woman, after becoming frustrated at how unrealistic Barbie’s proportions are. His goal was to create a fun, appealing doll with natural-looking makeup and a casual, sporty wardrobe. Read more on Huffington Post Women…
Justin Jedlica, also known as the Human Ken Doll, has a problem with Human Barbie Valeria Lukyanova, who he calls his “arch-nemesis.”
I’m getting a crazy flashback to that time when I was six and made my Barbie kick Ken out of the Dream House.
Jedlica and Lukyanova have met in the past, and Jedlica recently told GQ:
“She’s a cute girl…I don’t really get her. I don’t get why people think she’s so interesting. She has extensions. She wears stage makeup. She’s an illusionist…Unlike me, who has spent nearly $150,000 permanently transforming myself into a human Ken doll, Valeria just plays dress up. But as soon as you wipe away all that makeup, she’s just a plain Jane and there’s absolutely nothing special about her.”
Keep reading »
The Girl Scouts of the USA is under pressure from the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood and the Center for a New American Dream to end its partnership with Barbie, which it began last summer. The organization teamed up with Mattel to offer a Barbie webpage, activity book and uniform patch for Girl Scouts aged 5 to 8. The partnership marked the first ever Girl Scout patch that has corporate sponsorship, which sounds all kinds of skeevy to me. Keep reading »
How awesome would it be if we could hand a kid a doll that didn’t have absurdly unrealistic proportions like Barbie does?
You may remember last year’s 3D print of a Barbie created using the average measurements of a 19-year-old girl. It made waves on the internet because, spoiler alert, the original Barbie’s shape was nothing like the average-sized doll. Artist and researcher Nickolay Lamm, the genius behind that project, got bombarded with questions about where parents could buy a doll like his creation. Lamm couldn’t point to any doll on the market with a realistic look, so he took things into his own hands. Keep reading »