Update: The relatable Lammily doll — an answer to the cookie-cutter beauty standards upheld by Barbie and Bratz dolls for generations — already came with "average" proportions and brown rather than blonde hair, as well as an extension pack of vinyl stickers representing acne, scars, cellulite, freckles, glasses, and even grass stains. Now, with the introduction of the $10 "Period Party" kit, Lammily is getting even more realistic. The kit features a calendar and dot stickers, a pair of doll-sized underwear, 18 reusable "pads and liners stickers," and an educational pamphlet. While we've never described our own periods as a "party," we're applauding this move to normalize and demystify menstruation for young women, especially when the biological process remains shrouded in stigma. "I don’t want to make this a whole political project or anything," Lammily's creator, Nickolay Lamm, told TIME, "but...[in] the overall culture...menstruation is very taboo, and not only taboo, but some people use it as an insult." Hopefully Lammily's newest accessories will help shift menstruation away from "insult" and a little closer to "normal part of life."
This story was originally published on November 19, 2014.
We've established that Barbie's proportions are so cartoonish as to be impossible if she were human: With her top-heavy weight distribution, she'd have to walk on all fours, while her midsection is only large enough to allow for half a liver. (No alcohol for you, young lady.) Now, 55 years after Mattel first unleashed Barbie on the world, she is still number-one in the doll market, but her crown is slipping. The Lammily doll has entered the scene — and injected it with an unprecedented dose of relatability.
The doll, created by artist and researcher Nickolay Lamm, is a game-changing Barbie alternative designed with the proportions of an average 19-year-old woman and (gasp) brown hair. What's more, Lammily owners can adorn their dolls with vinyl stickers that depict freckles, acne, glasses, scars, grass stains, and cellulite. You know, like what real people sometimes have on their bodies (in the case of cellulite, that's 90% of women at some point in their lives).
Lammily is the latest, and most ambitious, member of the growing collection of dolls that are inspirational rather than aspirational — which encourage girls not to be like the dolls, but to be who they are, with confidence. We're all about it (and look forward to greater racial diversity in the doll world, too — got anything in the works, Lammily?). Watch the above video to witness Lammily morph from her beautifully average self into a classic Barbie. Have fun with that half a liver, doll.