Mattel unveils new Barbie dolls living with disabilities

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  • We’ve come a long way since the days of stick thin Barbie dolls with long, blonde hair being the only option on the shelves.

    As we have progressed through the 21st century many brands have become increasingly socially aware and have been making a concerted effort to be inclusive of all different types of people.

    And the iconic Barbie doll is no different.

    Their toy manufacturing company Mattel, who are also responsible for classic bestsellers like Hot Wheels, Fisher-Price and Polly Pocket, have unveiled a new range of their Barbie dolls and they’re all about being inclusive.

    Back in 2016, the brand revealed new Barbie dolls that had different skin tones and body types and then the following year they released an Engineer Barbie as part of their STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) kit, which actually ended up causing controversy among customers.

    And now Mattel has unveiled a new range of the childhood favourite, which includes the iconic doll as you’ve never seen her before.

    The new range includes two dolls who have visible disabilities – one in a wheelchair and one who has a prosthetic leg.

    And they’ve made them look just as cool as the rest of the gang.

    inclusive barbie dolls disabilities

    Credit: Mattel

    The Barbie in the wheelchair wears a pair of skinny jeans and reflective wayfarer sunglasses on her head, and the doll with the prosthetic leg wears a trendy dress with hoop earrings and her hair swept back.

    The new additions to their collection are an attempt to normalise disabilities and are a result of what customers have fed back to the company.

    ‘As a brand, we can elevate the conversation around physical disabilities by including them into our fashion doll line to further showcase a multi-dimensional view of beauty and fashion‘, said Mattel.

    ‘Over the years, the line has evolved to be more reflective of the world girls see around them. We’re excited to expand our offerings as the most diverse and inclusive doll line in the world.’

    Fans have taken to Instagram to express their excitement at the new inclusive toys, commenting:‘I am SO EXCITED FOR THIS LINE.’

    Another said: ‘Thank you for understanding the real meaning of inclusivity, that so many other companies have failed to grasp. Kudos @barbie.’

    A third wrote: ‘Its amazing for little girl with wheelchair! Thank you to do that, now! The world has changed. More barbies like this. @barbie and in other time barbie with sticks.’