Barbie/Mattel

People Are Loving Barbie's New Inclusive Line Of Dolls With Disabilities

The Feels

After years the toy maker expands its line to be more inclusive.

For decades inclusivity was a bit of a blind spot for toy maker Mattel and their iconic Barbie doll.

But in the last decade Barbie has evolved more than she did in the 50 years before.

And she's about to undertake another major change that is coming to a store near you.


Since her debut in 1959 Barbie has been one of the best selling toys of all time, but for almost as many years consumers and advocates have had concerns about the iconic doll.

From her anatomically improbable measurements to her noticeably monotone complexion and homogenous features, many worried about the unrealistic standards and lack of diversity Barbie represented to young girls.

2019 though may be the year when there is finally a Barbie for everyone.

As part of Barbie's 60th anniversary celebration Mattel announced its most diverse line of dolls yet, including disabled Barbies, and people are loving her new look.


The upcoming Barbie Fashionistas line will feature a diverse new group of dolls with different hair types, body types facial sculpts and disabilities, including a Barbie in a wheelchair and one with a removable prosthetic leg.

13-year-old disabled rights advocate Jordan Reeves worked with Mattel on the new dolls.


It won't be the first doll with a wheelchair that Mattel created.



But this time they are hoping to get it right with input from people like Reeves.


In 1997 Mattel released Barbie's friend "Share-a-Smile Becky" followed by school photographer Becky and Paralympic Becky with a special racing design wheelchair.


Although Becky was a hit, girls soon discovered that her bulky wheelchair was too large to interact with accessories like the Barbie Dream House. Mattel said they would look into the issue but no changes were ever made and Becky was eventually discontinued in 2017.

This time however Mattel is aiming for a more representative doll.

According to Teen Vogue, Kim Culmone, Mattel's vice president of Barbie Design worked with disabled people and UCLA to design a more accurate representation.

When Barbie's design team worked with 13-year-old disability activist Reeves, who has a prosthetic arm, she suggested making Barbie's prosthetic leg removable to make her more realistic.

Fans of all ages are loving Barbie's new looks. For many the inclusive new line up means finally finding the Barbie they have always wanted.







And fans are already on the look out for more ways that Mattel can add to its new inclusive line.



Eager fans will have to wait a bit longer to get their hands on the new collection of inclusive Barbie's though.

The Fashionistas will be available in Fall 2019.

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