Why No Barbie Dolls with Natural Hair? A Woman Helps Break the Mold


In 1959, Mattel, Inc. launched a fashion doll that is now famously known as Barbie. It is one of the most successful toy lines ever but the plastic doll has also faced a great deal of scrutiny. The main complaint is that Barbie promotes a standard of beauty that most females do not fit into; especially African American girls.

Many people would argue that Barbie dolls do not have a profound affect on their young owners’ self image or view on beauty, but Karren Byrd is one person who vehemently disagrees with this sentiment. Byrd creates “Natural Beautiful Hair Dolls” that accurately represent the beauty of African American women. Her line of dolls sport natural hairstyles including afros, twists and locs. I got an opportunity to pick Ms. Byrd’s brain about her childhood and her beautiful creations.

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10 Responses to Why No Barbie Dolls with Natural Hair? A Woman Helps Break the Mold

  1. Pakuo December 8, 2011 at 1:45 am

    When the black Barbie line was added to Mattel toys I wondered about absence of a non-natural Barbie,as well. It is of course because of a loathing of black natural hair, not only by society at large, but also by black society. And that mind set won’t change unless we black people learn to love our whole and complete natural selves. I have to say it is very ironic, because I see so many white people trying to rock ‘fro’s and locs.

    Reply
  2. Taunya Baker Curry December 8, 2011 at 7:49 pm

    I love the look of those dolls. They are beautiful.

    Reply
  3. Terrell December 9, 2011 at 11:21 pm

    I am 55 years old today, however, when I was a child all of my Barbie dolls had afros.

    Reply
  4. gunzNroses December 10, 2011 at 9:56 pm

    I wish there were this kind when I was a little girl.

    Reply
  5. Pingback: So Weak For Black Beautiful Barbie Dolls | lovelyseasonscomeandgo

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