Barbie To Add More Dolls With Disabilities
The iconic lineup of Barbie dolls is expanding to include more with disabilities.
Mattel said this month that it is releasing the first Barbie doll with behind-the-ear hearing aids. The toymaker is also introducing a new doll with a prosthetic leg.
The offerings are part of the Fashionistas collection, which includes over 175 looks that vary in skin tone, eye color, hair color and texture, body type, disability and fashion, Mattel said.
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“Barbie wholeheartedly believes in the power of representation, and as the most diverse doll line on the market, we are committed to continuing to introduce dolls featuring a range of skin tones, body types and disabilities to reflect the diversity kids see in the world around them,” said Lisa McKnight, executive vice president and global head of Barbie and dolls at Mattel. “It’s important for kids to see themselves reflected in product and to encourage play with dolls that don’t resemble them to help them understand and celebrate the importance of inclusion.”
The Fashionistas line has included a Barbie that uses a wheelchair since 2019. At the time, Mattel said the device was one of the most requested features from consumers.
The company indicated that it worked with Dr. Jen Richardson, an educational audiologist, to ensure accurate representation in the doll with behind-the-ear hearing aids.
In addition to expanding the Barbie offerings with disabilities, new Fashionistas this year will feature smaller bust, curvy and original body types and the brand is adding a Ken doll with vitiligo, a condition that causes patches of skin to lose color, as well as options with rooted short hair and a slender body type.
The new Barbie Fashionista dolls are now available at all major retailers.
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