Barbie is getting a new look, again This photo provided by Mattel shows a group of new Barbie dolls introduced in January 2016. (Mattel via AP)
Barbie is getting a new look, again
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Barbie's got a brand new look.
 
Mattel is the maker of the iconic plastic doll. The company said it will begin selling Barbie with three new bodies. They are curvy, tall and petite. The doll will be available in seven skin tones, 22 eye colors and 24 hairstyles.
 
The El Segundo, California, toy company will also continue to sell the original Barbie. The new options come after years of criticism that Barbie had created unrealistic expectations for girls.
 
Time magazine first reported the changes. It touched on the topic with the headline, "Now can we stop talking about my body?"
 
The doll has changed in some ways already. New skin tones and looks were added last year. And Barbie's foot was movable for the first time. That allowed her to kick her heels off. Now she can wear flats.
 
Mattel has been searching for ways to recharge sales of Barbie. Sales fell 4 percent in the most recent quarter. The "want lists" from girls increasingly have included iPads and other things.
 
The new body types were in the works for two years, said Mattel spokeswoman Michelle Chidoni.
 
Whether kids will pick up the new dolls remains to be seen. Chidoni said previous changes were "positively received."
 
Mattel would not provide sales figures. But some marketing experts say more will have to be done to return Barbie to glory.
 
"The look of the dolls is great," said Marc Rosenberg. He is a marketing consultant in Chicago that has worked in the toy industry for 25 years. But in order to connect with kids, the new dolls need to be added to Barbie YouTube videos, apps and shows, said Rosenberg.
 
Dolls with the new body are available for preorder at shop.mattel.com. They will ship in February. They will start to show up on U.S. store shelves in March. They will roll out in the rest of the world after that, Mattel Inc. said.

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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
Why is Mattel allowing Barbie to wear flats?
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (31)
  • daniell1-hei
    2/03/2016 - 02:16 p.m.

    Now the barbie have moveable feet. so they can were flats.

  • evanl2-hei
    2/03/2016 - 02:21 p.m.

    They let barbie to wear flats because they are more movable

  • amiahj-hei
    2/03/2016 - 03:19 p.m.

    "Barbie's foot was movable for the first time. That allowed her to kick her heels off. Now she can wear flats."

  • anijiahf-wes
    2/04/2016 - 02:37 p.m.

    Mattel is allowing barvbie to wear flats because their feet was movable.

  • darianv-3-bar
    2/04/2016 - 08:39 p.m.

    Mattel is allowing barbie to wear flats because their feet are now moveable. my evidence is, "And Barbie's foot was movable for the first time. That allowed her to kick her heels off. Now she can wear flats." i like this article because I've always known barbie to be the same but now its good to see a change.

  • jennaw-1-bar
    2/05/2016 - 01:16 a.m.

    Mattel allowed Barbie to wear flats so that her seat can finally move around. Unlike like in the past when they only wore high heels their feet could not move. They had no way to stand so this made them think. When they say "..so we thought to let Barbie kick back and relax.." they thought that making Barbie flat shoed would also make it be able to stand. This decision made nor only a change to young girls but also a big deal for Mattel. Their sales went down 4% because of bathing to "perfect" body. Something interesting is that they have been working on this for two years. My dad knew since 2015 because he works there so I thought that he was going to be one of the first to know.

  • mina-str
    2/05/2016 - 10:02 a.m.

    So she can not kick her shoes off

  • ava-str
    2/05/2016 - 10:05 a.m.

    They are doing this because it is way more flattering and easer to walk in

  • curtis-str
    2/05/2016 - 10:07 a.m.

    Mattel is letting barbies were flats because it is easier to make the dolls walk

  • paige-str
    2/05/2016 - 10:10 a.m.

    So people will buy the product

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