We live in a society full of superficial beauty and unrealistic expectations. We see women in magazines with photoshopped bodies and edited facial features. However, most of us don’t view them as “fake.” We see them as the idealistic appearance of what a “beautiful” woman is and what we should be striving for.
Instead of seeing them as uniquely individual and beautiful people, we only see how close to perfection they outwardly appear. Why don’t we see them for who they truly are? I believe one major contributing factor in this skewed misconception of body image is from the Barbie doll.
Mirror Mirror, a healthy body image website, stated that, “if Barbie was a real woman, she would be 5’6” and weigh 120 pounds. Her body fat percentage would be so low that she would not be able to menstruate. Her measurements would be 38-18-34. The average woman’s measurements, on the other hand, are about 41-34-43.”
From an early age, little girls are bombarded with images of what the idealistic girl and women should look like even though it is next to impossible to achieve.
Barbie is a blonde, beautiful young woman with an impossibly anorexic figure. Little girls don’t understand the problem behind the plastic; they see a fun doll to play with. That is the problem.
Girls play with Barbies as if they were their friends or sometimes themselves. They pretend to live in a world that is perceived to be “better” than the reality of the world that surrounds them.
Some skeptics may argue that Barbie is just a toy and has nothing to do with reality. However, every child is influenced by the toys they play with. That’s why society is constantly giving children toys that are designed to prepare them for their adult life. Toys such as doctor’s kits, plastic kitchens, shopping carts, and baby dolls are all components to steering a child into typical and stereotypcial adult lives.
Unfortunately, some women have taken Barbie to a whole new level. Valeria Valeryevna Lukyanova, a Moldovan-Ukrainian model and entertainer, won the Ukrainian national beauty contest Miss Diamond Crown of Ukraine in 2007. She models herself after the Barbie doll. Kayleigh Dray, a journalist for Closer wrote an article on women as “human Barbies.” According to Dray, Lukyanova famously said: “Look, to me the Barbie doll looks perfect; it was created as a human idol. When I adopted her image, it felt very positive.”
She claims that the only surgery she has had were breast implants. She achieves her “Barbie look” through makeup and large colored contact lenses, which she wears over her green eyes.
Obviously, not all children are going to take Barbie to this extreme. Yet, this story highlights the effect the Barbie doll can have on a little girl’s perception on what beauty should be.
The Alliance for Eating Disorders Awareness reports that, “70 million people worldwide suffer from eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia. About 90 percent of those with eating disorders are young women between the ages of 12 and 25.”
An unhealthy body image is a huge problem in our society. I don’t believe Barbies should be completely eliminated, but I think they need to be re-evaluated. The Lammily doll, a more realistic Barbie doll, is a great alternative.
Nickolay Lamm, a graphic designer told The Washington Post that he created the Lammily doll because he wanted to send a message that “reality can be beautiful.” Lammily is a doll without make-up, that has stretch marks, and even a few extra pounds.
When children got the opportunity to play with the Lammily doll, they loved her. The young children had such remarks such as “She looks like me,” and “I think she looks beautiful and realistic.”
The concept behind Barbie as a doll to play with provides many hours of fun for young children. However, let’s give kids some positive reinforcement and a doll they can realistically relate to.
Barbie is a Good Role Model Essay
1480 Words6 Pages
Barbie is a Good Role Model
As a young girl the fondest memory was playing with all my Barbie dolls and having the time of my young youth. Getting new Barbie’s for my birthday and Christmas was the highlight for my friends and I every year, and comparing which dolls the others got with each other. Never once growing up did any of us feel that Barbie was bad for us to play with, or that she was a bad role model. She could be anything that she wanted to be and her friends were all different too. Barbie was just a doll that we could make say what ever we wanted to, and we let our imaginations make each doll have their own personality. Our mothers played with them when they were our age and turned out pretty well, and no one that I have…show more content…
Girls liked playing with toy dolls that they could make say and do what ever they wanted, and they could live in a fantasy world with their friends. Boys liked playing with their toy trucks and tools because it was fun to run things over and play with toys in the dirt, or with the tools, they act like they could actually be like older boys or their fathers and build stuff. Neither one of the toys that the boys played with seemed that it would scar them for life. With Barbie they more and more have made her a more positive role model by having her say encouraging things. So when it comes down to it, how a young boy plays with his toys is the same as how a young girl plays with her Barbie’s because they both just want to have fun with a toy, and they can make it do whatever they wanted. Young children could have control over something which both genders liked to do.
Barbie’s intelligence has been one of the most debated topics about the doll. While some say that she is just a “bimbo,” others find her to be a positive role model with all that Barbie can be. Schroeder says that by playing with a Barbie that was either a Doctor Barbie or a Vet Barbie will send a young girl to a therapist, and the infamous quote that one Barbie said “Math class is tough” (Schroeder 2). While some of the things that Barbie used to be about looked badly upon the dolls intelligence there have been may improvements since