Barbie Has A New Look — And The Small Change They Made Is Incredible

Photo: Skitterphoto, Oneinchpunch | Canva
real woman bodies in front of deconstructed barbies

It's no secret that heels are uncomfortable, but many people still expect women to wear them to look professional or sexy.

But where did this strange expectation that women should sacrifice the structure of their feet come from? — We'll tell you: Barbie!

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Barbie gave young girls and the world unhealthy expectations of what a female body should look like. But no one has ever just been able to put flats on her ... because her feet were solely made for high heels.

"If you recall, the regular feet on the Barbie — she could wear flats, but they wouldn’t lie flat," said Adrienne Appell, toy trend specialist for the Toy Industry Association. "Now, she has an adjustable ankle that allows her to wear flats."

Thankfully, that's about to change. In 2015, Mattel came out with a new Barbie's Fashionistas line and they have adjustable ankles that allow you to put flats on your doll if you want to give her a break. Did you hear that? Barbie can wear flats! Her feet are finally free. 

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The original design for Barbie had her standing on her tippy toes, allowing only stilettos to fit her feet and allow her to fully touch the ground while she "walked."

The line also has many diverse dolls with eight different skin tones, facial structures, eye colors, hairstyles, and hair colors.

"She isn't just blonde with three different skin tones," Appell said. "It's really an array that’s more custom and it's important because we live in a multicultural world. Girls like to find dolls that look like them, or their friends. Now it'll be easier for them to identify."

Why couldn't this have been a thing when we played with Barbies?

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You can now purchase all variations online, which now include a Barbie with Down Syndrome, a Ken with a Wheelchair And Ramp, and a Black Barbie with Crimped Hair and Freckles, to name just a few.

Mattel released this full statement about these different Barbie dolls: "The Barbie Fashionistas line was designed to represent the world girls see around them. With 23 dolls that feature 14 different facial sculpts, eight skin tones, 18 eye colors, and 23 hair colors with fashions reflecting authentic street style. This line represents a continued evolution of the Barbie brand."

Not too long ago, an awesome woman created comfortable stilettos. But hopefully, the new feet on Barbie will lessen the pressure on girls to wear them if they just aren't into it — and we don't blame them. 

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Nicole Weaver is a senior writer for Showbiz Cheat Sheet whose work has been featured in New York Magazine, Teen Vogue, and more.