Mattel has created a new line of “Inspiring Women” Barbie dolls in honor of Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day. The line showcases 17 significant women from the past such as Amelia Earhart and Frida Kahlo, as well as significant women from today, including Olympic medallist Chloe Kim and ballerina Misty Copeland.
The dolls also call attention to the awesome achievements of lesser-known women. One of these is Martyna Wojciechowska, a Polish travel journalist and adventurer, who was the first women to complete the Seven Summits. (An undertaking which involves climbing the tallest mountain on each continent.) Another is prominent French chef Hélène Darroze, who oversees a two Michelin star restaurant, The Connaught.
Mattel’s website states:
86% of moms surveyed are worried about the kind of role models their daughters are exposed to. That’s why Barbie continues to showcase examples of inspirational women. From Sheroes to Inspiring Women, meet our latest Barbie role models–all extraordinary women we’ve honored with a doll in their likeness.
Lisa McKnight, senior vice president and general manager for Barbie, said of the new line:
Girls have always been able to play out different roles and careers with Barbie and we are thrilled to shine a light on real-life role models to remind them that they can be anything.
Barbie is also inviting people to share the people who inspire them, using the hashtag #MoreRoleModels.
Although some companies’ promotions for International Women’s Day are trying a little too hard, Barbie’s promotion is refreshing, and a great way for girls to learn about women who’ve made history. It also helps the company to turn over a new leaf after having received criticism for encouraging unhealthy body image for young girls. Their efforts to make Barbies that are more diverse than the stereotypical blonde bombshell may be just what the brand needs to recover its popularity.