“My whole philosophy of Barbie was that, through the doll, the girl could be anything she wanted to be. Barbie always represented the fact that a woman has choices. “
– RUTH HANDLER, BARBIE CREATOR
Barbie is changing and representative of modern culture. Her image as the buxom blonde with the hourglass figure that is supposed to reflect the ideal woman is a thing of the past. Barbie has undergone an image makeover throughout the years and we feel it is the perfect time to see real women represented in every facet of society, including the toys our children play with. Barbie is a reflection of our changing society.
Barbie creator Ruth Handler (1916 – 2002), invented Barbie after she saw her daughter and friends playing with paper dolls. In Handler’s autobiography, Dream Doll: The Ruth Handler Story, it says she “discovered something very important: They were using these dolls to project their dreams of their own futures as adult women.” That may seem uncommon for 2021, but for the 1950s, little girls were generally assumed to grow up and become moms and not pursue their own professional and personal goals. Handler created Barbie so girls could play and imagine all the things they could be when they grew up. In the book, she continued, “Unlike play with a baby doll—in which a little girl is pretty much limited to assuming the role of Mommy—Barbie has always represented the fact that a woman has choices.”
We love that! For the 1960s, Mattel was ahead of its time and created dolls to represent inclusion. Ken was introduced as Barbie’s on-again-off-again boyfriend, best friend Midge and her future husband Allan and African-American friend Christie. Additional dolls have regularly been added to the line, including younger relatives and a multinational and multiethnic circle of friends including Becky, a perky little strawberry blonde who comes with a pink wheelchair.
What we are attracted to is Barbie’s slogan “We can do anything, right Barbie?” It empowers girls to envision their future full of powerful and diverse professional possibilities. Barbie represents choice and independence. To date, Barbie has had more than 100 professions, representing many lines of work including fashion designer, paleontologist, NASCAR driver, pilot, military officer, veterinarian, Olympian, and presidential candidate. Barbie has always been a career girl, and through the years she has reflected the changing nature of career options for women.
Barbie has had her look altered several times over the years to keep up with changing beauty ideals that celebrate different body shapes, sizes, hair types and skin tones. We love that! We see women of all different shapes, sizes and skin tones in our clinic and they are all beautiful. We love that Barbie has a doll to represent all of our differences and is a great role model for young girls and boys.
This past Christmas I created our ‘Barbie Wall of Fame’ and found a Barbie to represent each of our team members. We thought today being International Women’s Day, was the perfect day to debut our Barbie Wall and give a shout out to all women to say “WE CAN DO ANYTHING!” We are a team of women that support each other and our clients. Our goal to make you look and feel your best is about helping everyone achieve the confidence to do anything they want.
Happy International Women’s Day
Here’s to strong women
May we know them
May we be them
May we raise them