Karen Braithwaite is a mom any Barbie lover would be lucky to have: she is asking Mattel to make birthday party merchandise featuring black Barbie dolls.
Mattel already sells black Barbie dolls (Barbie’s black friend Christie appeared in 1968; these days Barbie herself is black) and certain black Barbie items, such as stickers. But their sets of party goodies — cups, plates, etc. — do not include a complete set with black Barbies. All the full sets portray Barbie as white. Keep reading »
Mattel recently released a line of black Barbie dolls that is supposed to be more authentic. The So In Style by Barbie dolls, developed by Stacy McBride-Irby, have fuller lips, curlier hair, and three distinct skin tones. Some have criticized these dolls for not being authentic enough and having long brown hair, while others have praised them, saying they’re a step towards changing beauty ideals and giving black girls a positive representation of themselves. But this isn’t the first time Mattel has released a line of dolls to represent black women specifically. Keep reading »