Barbie Millicent Roberts is the most well-known name in today’s world. Since she was first introduced, young girls have admired and respected Barbie as a role-model. They have begged their mothers to buy every new model that hits the shelves. Handler revealed that she had designed Barbie so her blank face would allow children to project their future dreams on Barbie. Ruth Handler wanted children to love her when she created it. She didn’t know what impact Barbie was going to have on kids and adults. Barbie made a big impression on children and adults.
Ruth Handler began to develop Barbie with her daughter. Barbara Handler loved to play with paper dolls of adults that could be dressed in different clothes. Handler realized that young children were playing pretend and imagining the future. Barbara and friends would imitate the adult conversations and actions when they played with paper dolls. She also observed that, despite the fact that there were many paper dolls with similar age ranges to Barbara and her friends, they all gravitated towards the adult-like dolls. She noticed on a trip with her family to Switzerland that the dolls looked like adults and each one wore a different outfit. She was surprised that outfits and dolls were not sold separately. This made her realize the importance of a doll with the ability to buy separate outfits. Mattel was the first to respond to her inspiration. Mattel initially didn’t believe that the doll Handler envisioned could be produced at a reasonable price. Mattel was also concerned about possible negative reactions from parents who might find a doll that is so mature offensive. She was strong and determined. She convinced Mattel they needed to create a new prototype.
“I would never walk around my house in that way.” This influence is not good for my little girl. A mother was concerned when Barbie made her debut at the International Toy Fair in 1959. Parents weren’t impressed by Barbie, who wore a ponytail with high heels and a black-and-white zebra-striped swimsuit, along with earrings and sunglasses. One Mattel sales rep said at the start of the fair: “We became believers because Ruth’s excitement was so contagious.” Ruth’s logic seemed to make sense, even though we were astonished by the new doll. Ruth thought that paper dolls fans would also like it. She was confident in her ability to convince those who disliked Barbie. However, the more people came to the fair and saw the doll, the more the past fears about their reactions began to be realized. Barbie’s mature appearance shocked many parents. Most parents had grown up watching their daughters play with tiny baby dolls. Chatty Wetsy, Betsy Wetsy, and other dolls were a common sight for them. In the 1950s, after the war, girls were told to concentrate on marriage and motherhood. This is what the dolls were meant to teach. Handler was determined to create a doll so different from the norm. Although Miss Revlon dolls, which had adult-like figures before them, were on the market at that time, they targeted adults. Barbie was targeted at America’s most vulnerable children. Mattel and Handler continued to market Barbie despite the outrage. Mattel decided to focus their marketing efforts on children instead of mothers. Barbie became the epitome of suburban life, as she had a variety of luxury items and was always surrounded by new clothing, accessories, cars. Mattel also used Barbie in a variety of shows and commercials in the 1950s. Barbie dolls sold for 3 dollars each in the first year. Mattel was able to see the impact that Barbie had on children in households when it came to purchasing decisions. They continued marketing Barbie directly at them.
Barbie’s original appearance from the International Toy Fair, 1959 is gone. Barbie reflected the values of 1950s culture. Her body was one of the most striking features. She embodied what girls envisioned they would look like as they grew older, with her long legs, large arms, small waist, and a shapely chest. Although controversy was present when she debuted, it is now at an all-time high. Body image is the main concern. Parents worry that Barbie’s body could negatively affect their children’s self-image. In today’s society everyone strives to achieve the “perfect” body, which is often unattainable. Barbie is viewed as a role model by many little girls. Parents are concerned that her body image could negatively affect their own children’s self-esteem. Standing life-size, she would have been 7 feet 6 inches tall with a waist of 28 inches and hips 40 inches. These proportions could be applied to 5’6 models. The waist would then be 20 inches. Hips would be 29 inches. And the bust, 27 inches. One in 100,000 women will have a body like Barbie. The odds of a woman having the body of Barbie are 1 in 100,000.
Young girls today are constantly under pressure to look like Barbie. But Barbie herself can be harmful. Slayen has been a Lincoln High School graduate for over ten years and knows first-hand the effects of anorexia. Slayen isn’t blaming Barbie, but she acknowledges that her illness was caused by the environment. Mattel’s representative replied to Slayen by saying that Barbie, as a pop culture icon, is often used to express personal opinions and viewpoints. Today, girls are bombarded with images of female bodies. Parents and caretakers must help them understand what is being shown. There is no doubt that Barbie stands at 11.5 inches and weighs 7.25 pounds. She was not modeled to resemble a person. Mattel introduced a new Barbie with a smaller bust and a wider waist to better reflect the female body type. Barbie’s controversial history hasn’t ended there. In 1967, “Colored Francie”, a doll with a darker skin tone was released. The doll was widely criticised because it was created using an existing head mold and, aside from the darker skin color, she did not have any African American features. Mattel responded again in 1980, but this time years later. They released African American dolls and Hispanics with distinct characteristics.
Barbie’s creation was fraught with controversy. It is possible to argue that Barbie’s impact on society has been negative. But that would mean ignoring millions of children and adults who love Barbie. Barbie is a huge part of the adult subculture for Barbie collectors. They collect, buy, sell and display rare and collectible Barbie dolls. They are more precious to them. A vintage doll purchased in 1959, which originally cost only 3 dollars, sold for 3,552.50 in 2004, despite the fact that it was bought in 1959. Barbie’s greatest impact is on children. Since many have been playing Barbie for years, she is a role-model to them. Barbie defied many stereotypes, including the one that women could not pursue a career. Barbie is a number of careers. Some include being a veterinarian. Others are being an architect. It is amazing how a simple Barbie doll has inspired so many girls around the world to follow their dreams, discover their talents and explore them.