A broader view of beauty

The importance of exposing our children to diversity and providing them with imaginative toys that allow them to see themselves in their imaginary play cannot be overstated.

With International Women’s Day approaching on 8 March, it is crucial that we help our children recognise a broader view of beauty, one that incorporates the diversity that surrounds us – and the Barbie Fashionista range is doing just that!

Winner of the coveted Toy of the Year award for 2017, in the Doll category, for its bold introduction of diversity, the range has changed the face of the stereotypical Barbie brand (which celebrates its 59th anniversary on 9 March) by introducing new dolls with new body shapes, new face shapes, new skin tones, and new hairstyles.

The Barbie Fashionista range has its roots in 2015, which saw the launch of a new Barbie crew featuring 23 dolls with a range of skin tones, facial structures and hair colours. The popularity of the new line saw the official launch of the Fashionista label in 2016, with the introduction of three new body types – tall, curvy and petite – seven skin tones, 14 facial structures, 22 eye colours and 24 hairstyles. Plus, of course, countless new on-trend fashions and accessories to suit each individual doll, from casually cool and boho bold, to elegant evening wear and pretty much everything in-between!

Today, the Fashionista range features over 100 dolls of diverse appearance, and it continues to grow. The 2018 range will bring with it even more variety, introducing another four body types, nine skin tones, 13 face-sculpts, nine eye colours, 11 hair colours and 13 hairstyles.

The choice is limitless. By allowing our children to choose a Barbie in their own image, or in the image of their best friend, or favourite actress, singer, movie star, or sporting hero, we are encouraging them to see their beauty and which surrounds them.

We live in an increasingly diverse world; it is not only natural, but crucial, that our children’s imaginary worlds represent this diversity.