Mattel, the maker of Barbie and Hot Wheels, has recently released Creatable World. Creatable World features the first one of a kind collection of gender neutral dolls. The toy company markets this series as “a doll line designed to keep labels out and invite everyone in.” These dolls aim to foster creativity and encourage imagination among children of any gender identifications. With the Creatable World dolls, kids are free to create and customize their own characters.
For the longest time, dolls and playhouses have always been associated with girls. On the other hand, toys for boys have always consisted of cars and action figures. Even the colors blue and pink have been assigned specific genders. While these are not totally backed by science, these are beliefs that stem from our culture and traditions. These are norms that most of us have conformed to while growing up.
Luckily, millennial parents are starting to challenge this norm. Moreover, they have started calling out toy companies for not promoting inclusivity. And their efforts have not gone in vain. Major toy brands such as Disney and Mattel start to elimnate toxic gender stereotypes on toys. Disney no longer markets its children’s costumes with “boys” and “girls” labels. This way, kids could freely dress as their favorite characters, regardless of their gender. Gone are the days when boys can only dress up as superheroes and girls as Disney Princesses. Likewise, Mattel now classifies their toys with gender-neutral sections. According to Senior Vice President of Mattel Fashion Doll Design, Kim Culmone,
“Toys are a reflection of culture and as the world continues to celebrate the positive impact of inclusivity, we felt it was time to create a doll line free of labels.”
How Are These Different To Other Dolls?
The Creatable World dolls feature diverse skin tones and hair types. Unlike typical Barbie dolls or Ken dolls, these dolls come in neutral and ungendered body shapes and types. Similarly, these dolls’ also sport a versatile facial feature. So, no full hips or broad shoulders and definitely no makeups. Basically, these dolls are a blank canvass. And it’s totally up to the children how they would like to dress up their dolls and style them.
What’s Included with the Gender Neutral Dolls?
Fresh off the box, the 11-inch dolls sport a short haircut which can be styled with a long wig. Plus, there’s a variety of clothing and accessories to choose from. Each doll comes with three styles of upper garments, pants, shorts, a skirt, three pairs of shoes, a bag, a hat, and a pair of sunglasses. Indeed, kids can create over 100 looks just by mixing and matching all these outfits! In addition, these dolls have bendable necks and limbs that enable kids to create poses and play out stories.
We hope that these dolls are just the first among the many that Mattel and other toy companies will create in the future. Toys may just be toys, but these play a crucial role in teaching children the value of inclusivity.