Whether you are male or female, we have all grown up knowing who Barbie is. She’s tall, blonde, skinny at the waist and large in the chest and, as children, we idolized her. Whether we wanted to be just like her or we wanted to date someone just like her, she has been placed on a pedestal for decades. (Did I mention that she never ages?) Barbie has been around since 1959, and throughout the years has progressively become more glamourized.
Last summer, artist Nickolay Lamm created a “Normal Barbie” that he is calling “Lammily”. She has the proportions of an average 19 year old woman, wears very light make up and dresses unpretentiously. Lamm has just begun a campaign to fund production of the new doll. He hopes to raise $95,000, with the long term goal of selling them in retail stores. The purpose of his creation is to show children that average is beautiful, bring a sense of reality back into their lives, and promote a healthy lifestyle.
With all of these new diet crazes, reality TV shows and photos aimed at losing weight, many of us forget that, contrary to how they’re advertised, these things are not real. A diet is not something you go on and off of; a diet is what you eat. And let’s be honest, with the massive amounts of Photoshop tools readily available, it can be hard to distinguish what is actual reality. Ideally, this new doll could begin a new era of self-respect and positive body image. It is still unclear how children will react to Lammily, but Lamm has stated that his cousins like the designs because they look more like themselves, and she looks more friendly and inviting than Barbie.
The overall effect of Lammily could be just what we need to implement a change. If we start believing at a young age that it’s OK to have flaws, after all that’s what makes us unique, then we can start to realize as a society that it’s not about what we look like on the outside, but how we utilize the qualities we have on the inside.
Lauren Le Vine, R. (2014, March 5). Yahoo! Shine. Retrieved March 6, 2014, from http://shine.yahoo.com/healthy-living/coming-soon-barbie-normal-proportions-222200100.html
Mattel, Inc. (2012). Barbie. Retrieved March 7, 2014, from Barbie Media: http://www.barbiemedia.com/about-barbie/history.html
Mintz, Z. (2014, March 5). International Business Times. Retrieved March 7, 2014, from http://www.ibtimes.com/nickolay-lamm-launches-normal-barbie-doll-campaign-lammily-design-shows-average-beautiful-photos