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After 56 Years, Barbie Finally Starts To Look A Bit More Like Us

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Photo: Courtesy of Barbie.
Barbie currently boasts a résumé of more than 150 careers and a "dream big" message on her LinkedIn profile — but, inspirational brand messages aside, it's no secret that Mattel's most famous doll has a long way to go before she comes close to representing women today. Now, the company has introduced a line of dolls that's a literal step in the right direction.

For the past 56 years, Barbie has been stuck wearing high heels due to the design of her feet, which are, famously, permanently stuck in tip-toe position. However, Cosmopolitan reports that Mattel is beginning to roll out a collection of Barbies with articulated ankles — and Barbie's newly-human joints allow her to wear both heels and flats. This change debuted earlier this year with the new Barbie Film Director doll, whose box sets includes two pairs of shoes: Mary Jane flats and high-heeled boots, with the option to wear both. It might be a small alteration in the world of kids' toys, but it's certainly an important one.

More exciting is the fact that this signifies even bigger changes for Barbie down the line. The company is gearing up to debut its "Fashionista" Barbies, which include eight different skin tones, 14 different facial shapes, 18 eye colors, 22 hair styles, and 23 hair colors. It's a massive move for the brand, which has come under fire for its limited and very stereotypical representation of non-white ethnicities. Although there's no word yet on the availability of the Fashionista line, the collection is already displayed on Barbie's website. Here's hoping getting Barbie out of permanent relevé is only the beginning of her makeover. (Cosmopolitan)
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