By Gabriela Sandoval
After long talk of Barbie’s harmfully unrealistic body type, Mattel announced new changes to the iconic doll. Barbie now comes in a range of body types more reflective of real women’s bodies. Available only on Barbie.com, Barbie now comes in a curvy, petite, and tall body type. The dolls also come in a variety of skin tones and hair styles. Lucio Beltran, senior at South Gate High School, says, “I think it’s good because little boys and girls won’t be fixated on the idea that women are blonde with blue eyes, and they’ll learn to appreciate what real women look like.”
The alteration comes after Barbie’s decrease in sales the last couple of years, reflecting the public’s desire for an adjustment in Barbie’s change. The low sales, along with anti-Barbie protests, competition with more empowering doll alternatives, and psychological studies of the possible negative effects Barbie might have on young girls, have motivated the major Barbie redesign.
Most of the public response has been positive. Many view Mattel’s decision as a step in the right direction, but others think the doll isn’t curvy enough. “Ultimately, haters are going to hate,” President and COO of Mattel Richard Dickson told Time. “We want to make sure the Barbie lovers love us more — and perhaps change the people who are negative to neutral. That would be nice.” South Gate High School junior Paola Morales thinks, “In a way it’s good because girls won’t feel insecure about themselves, but I hate how some are too skinny and some are a little overweight.” For now, Mattel is in talks with toy retailers to create shelf space for the new dolls and their clothes and accessories.