Barbie’s Plummeting Neckline Causes Uproar

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“‘Busty Barbie’ in Mattel’s new Back to Basics Barbie collection is too revealing for some parents” by Tracy Miller at the NY Daily News

 Barbie has always been known for her curves – but a new doll from Mattel is upping the ante, much to some parents’ consternation.

The Barbie “Back to Basics” collection is a new line of Barbie dolls dressed in stylish cocktail attire: Little black dresses, off-the-shoulder frocks and tiny strapless numbers. But one doll in the line is grabbing all the attention: No. 10, who’s quickly earned the nickname “Busty Barbie.”

Read the full story at the NY Daily News

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Comments

  1. To the girls who were “influenced” by this doll about your body shape, you have a very weak mind. I played with barbie from ages 4-13, I had no one to tell me that this was an impossible body and was completely fake,scratch that I didn’t NEED anyone to tell me that, know why? cause I’m not an idiot. Growing up I somehow knew this was not what a real natural body looks like and doesn’t need to cause it would look ridiculous(as we see with plastic surgery girls). You know who I took my body cues from? athlete’s; cause they were real people with actual attainable body’s, not some plastic toy. I can however agree with the neckline is a bit low for the doll to be on the shelf. OH one more thought on this; You are all so quick to jump down Mattel’s throat about a slutty looking barbie and how it affects a girls poor self image, did everyone forget their greatest catch phrase and creation? let me remind you “be who YOU want to be, B-A-R-B-I-E ,barbie girl) this catch phrase was attached too CAREER barbies,doctor barbie,flight attendant barbie,dentist barbie, teacher barbie, etc. I don’t see the problem with mattel, if you want someone to blame for a girls poor self image blame advertising for their awful overuse of photoshop on women,that’s where I got my spell of low self esteem was from models they used in magazine’s not plastic dolls. Or jump on the parents who buy their kids those abercrombie and fitch stuffed bikini’s for girls, you want low self esteem starter for girls, there it is! Or protest those toddler and tiara’s bullshit, those mothers should be shot!.

  2. Good question Cherry. As for studies showing what effect Barbie has on girls, check out these two links:

    http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4156/is_20050612/ai_n14680012/ (June 2005)
    “They concluded that early exposure to the dolls with an unrealistically thin body shape may damage the body image of girls, leading to an increased risk of disordered eating and cycles of weight gain and loss.”

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/article1083049.ece (May 2006)
    “The researchers from two British universities claim Barbie dolls could promote girls’ insecurity about their image which in turn may contribute indirectly to insecurity and eating disorders later in life. ”

    And yes, it would be great to hear from parents and what influences their toy purchases for their daughters.

  3. Sharon,
    Parents continue to buy Barbies. They’ve been around long enough kids who played with them to now be parents. It’s curious and interesting to note that those girls-now-parents don’t see the issues we do. I’d like to hear what they have to say.

    Idolizing that “perfect” shaped body seems wrong to me, and if the girls come to believe that the definition of beauty is Barbie’s shape they will be sorely disappointed when their bodies develop. Who can look like a manufactured doll without plastic surgery? Also, teaching girls that showing a lot of cleavage is about Back to Basics seems ridiculous and a continued objectification of a woman’s body. That being said have there been any studies on the effect of these dolls?

    One more thing, when I clicked on the link it was ironic to me that the mother who was talking had a low scooped neck top on and was showing cleavage. Granted it wasn’t the same way as the doll but…
    Cherry

  4. Seriously? If your daughter is getting screwed up because she sees some cleavage on A PLASTIC DOLL, then the problem is not the doll, the problem is your lack of ability to parent.

  5. Since I would assume that most 5-10 year olds are having these dolls purchased for them, as opposed to buying them for themselves, the solution seems obvious. If they don’t sell, the stores won’t stock them and Mattel won’t make them.

  6. Barbie, or rather, Mattel strikes again. Barbie: the ‘children’s toy’ just happens to be a doll with a fully developed woman’s body that we give to our little girls to play with. Now it looks like Barbie’s got some nifty implants and ‘night out on the town’ wear. Hm… wondering what the imaginations of our little 5-10 year olds will get up to with this look. It was bad enough growing up with Barbie’s look and body as a beauty role model – programming I’m still attempting to eliminate as a grown black woman; now kids can get programmed into their heads that the thin body, tiny waist and super-boobs are attainable too. And of course they are – if you go out and buy them. Quite frankly, as a woman, I find it offensive. As a black woman I find it offensive. But hey – anything to make a buck. Way to go, Mattel!

  7. This is really offensive. Marketers have to push the limits to get attention. But where is the line?

Trackbacks

  1. [...] was released in 2010, after this piece was originally published. One of the Black dolls caused controversy as the plunging neckline on her dress seemed at bit more sexualized than her counterparts in the [...]

  2. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Helen Dearnley, Sharon Haywood. Sharon Haywood said: Latest at Adios Barbie: "Barbie's Plummeting Neckline Causes Uproar" Thoughts? [...]