A few weeks ago I was walking around the toy section of Target looking to purchase a child’s birthday gift and I noticed something strange about the Barbie dolls. Why were they dressed so slutty? The shorts and skirts were really short and they looked like they just stepped out of a nightclub, which made me wonder, would I really want these dolls walking into my daughters bedroom to play with her other toys?
In general I don’t have a problem with Barbie dolls, even if the shape of the dolls is anything but realistic. Last year I bought some clothes for the Barbie’s my 4-year-old already had, and I thought the clothes were cute. This year when I look at the dolls (or the clothes) I just can’t get the sluttiness out of my mind. I don’t know about you, but my daycare center teacher, dog-walker, and pediatrician just don’t dress like that. If the doll bent over, you would be lucky to see a thong – because frankly, I am not expecting that these dolls wear anything under their clothes if the top layer is any indication.
I was trying to buy a gift for a little girl turning 5, and the Barbie quickly fell to the bottom of the list of options. I found some cute little Disney dolls (Snow White, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty) that have clothes that actually cover something (a.k.a ball gowns). As a working mother I certainly don’t like the idea of a girl (or woman) waiting around for Prince Charming to save her, however, at least these dolls were wearing clothes that covered essential body parts, which is a far cry from the Barbies. Because my daughter already owns so many Barbies, I can only hope that Mattel gets the message (when their dolls aren’t selling) that maybe they need create some more appropriate clothes (for 3 to 7-year-olds?). For now, my daughter’s Barbies are dressed in last years ‘rags’ and are hoping for a new fashion trend this fall. If not, then they may find themselves wearing princess dresses borrowed from Snow White or handmade clothes made from paper bags.