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Some Things Are Missing From Barbie‘s Frida Kahlo Design

Connect those brows!


In honor of International Women’s Day, Barbie announced that they are creating dolls based on real women like Amelia Earhart, Katherine Johnson, and Frida Kahlo.

Senior Vice President and General Manager, Lisa McKnight, said in an official statement:

“As a brand that inspires the limitless potential in girls, Barbie will be honoring its largest line up of role models timed to International Women’s Day because we know that you can’t be what you can’t see. Girls have always been able to play out different roles and careers with Barbie and we are thrilled to shine a light on real life role models to remind them that they can be anything.”

This is a great initiative which includes: snowboarding champion Chloe Kim, filmmaker Patty Jenkins, conservationist Bindi Irwin, boxing champion Nicola Adams, windsurfer Çağla Kubat, chef Hélène Darroze, volleyball champion Hui Ruoqi, designer Leyla Piedayesh, professional golfer Lorena Ochoa, journalist Martyna Wojciechowska, soccer player Sara Gama, actress and philanthropist Xiaotong Guan, prima ballerina Yuan Tan, and fashion designer Vicky Martin Berrocal.

New Barbies

Credit: Barbie/Mattel

Barbie has been working hard to create a more diverse brand that embraces more body types and races, which is a positive thing. However, what I will say that, looking at the Frida Kahlo doll, there are two things that stand out to me missing: where is her unibrow and where is her mustache?

Glam!Frida is a trend I’ve seen a lot of as the Frida Renaissance has been happening in non-Latinx pop culture, and what makes it unsettling is that all of it completely ignores what Frida stood for in terms of her own self-expression. It ignores the fact that she was a woman never at ease with her own body, that she lived a life in constant pain, and was in an emotionally abusive relationship, and that as a communist, who was not really a fan of American capitalism, this is not the legacy she’d want in many ways.

I’m not saying that every Frida Kahlo toy needs to come with a metal pipe and a copy of the Communist Manifesto, but if we aren’t going to get the mustache and full unibrow, then many we need to pick other Latina artists to celebrate. There are plenty: Selena (a re-release), Rita Morano, Rita Hayworth, Katy Jurado, Salma Hayek, etc.

(via HelloGoiggles, image: Barbie/Mattel)

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Princess (she/her-bisexual) is a Brooklyn born Megan Fox truther, who loves Sailor Moon, mythology, and diversity within sci-fi/fantasy. Still lives in Brooklyn with her over 500 Pokémon that she has Eevee trained into a mighty army. Team Zutara forever.