If you haven’t heard by now, Barbie has launched a campaign called, “The Evolution of Barbie”. They added new body types to the Barbie line: curvy, tall, and petite.
You can see them and watch a video about it here: http://www.barbie.com/en-us
See, this makes me happy for many reasons. I think that the original Barbie has been the image that most girls wanted to look like as they grew up. I was one of those girls. I thought that if I could look like Barbie, I would be liked more than I was as a plus-sized, curvy child. That stayed with me as I grew up and compared Barbie to models, actresses, and the “popular” kids in my school. They all strove to look a certain way, to look like what we thought was the “ideal” beauty.
But, now that Barbie is coming out with different body types, girls can start to appreciate their own bodies more. I think this is a healthy step toward the body positive movement. And no, I don’t think they’re promoting obesity, blah blah blah. I think they’re saying what we’ve all been saying. It’s okay to love yourself for who YOU are.
No one is built the same. It’s as simple as that. Some of us are tall, some of us are petite, average, and yes, even curvy and overweight, but that’s okay. It’s just part of being human. None of us are alike. Yes, we can change our looks if that’s what will make us feel better about ourselves, but why not start with loving yourself for who you are and then go from there?
I’m proud of what Mattel is doing, even if they are doing it to make more money. This gives me hope that young girls can learn to love themselves for who they are before struggling with self-image issues in middle grade and high school. A good foundation for loving yourself starts when you’re young. I wish I had listened to my parents and others who told me I was beautiful. Maybe then I wouldn’t have struggled so much, but I also welcome the struggle because it led me to where I am right now. If I hadn’t struggled with this, how could I help others who are going through this struggle? But I don’t wish it on anyone. I spent more time hating myself than loving myself, and if I can’t love myself, how can I love anyone properly?
The point I’m trying to make is that I think changing how we see others’ (including Barbie’s) body types, the more positive we will all be in the end. If we learn to accept differences in people and their bodies now (or at an early age in life), imagine how that could potentially end bullying. Imagine how we could love others and ourselves more.
Maybe I’m dreaming too big, but I never believed in dreaming too big. We can all achieve great things if we set our minds to it, and I believe we’re all heading in the right direction when we can learn to love others for who they are as a person and not what they look like.
So, bravo, Mattel. Thanks for getting this started.