Barbie reveals first doll with behind-the-ear hearing aid, Ken doll with vitiligo

Barbie announced its first doll with behind-the-ear hearing aids as part of its latest offerings in the most diverse and inclusive line of fashion dolls on the market. Continuing the brand’s journey to represent global diversity and inclusivity in the fashion doll aisle, and to allow kids to play out even more stories that they see in the world around them, the new Fashionistas line-up includes Barbie with behind the ear hearing aids, Ken doll with vitiligo, new Fashionista doll with a prosthetic leg and Ken options with rooted short hair.

The Barbie Fashionistas line is where the Barbie brand delivers the most diversity and inclusion, and since its inception, more than 175 looks have been introduced, offering girls a variety of skin tones, eye colours, hair colours, and textures, body types, disabilities, and fashions to choose from. In 2021, eight of the top ten most popular dolls in the line globally were diverse, inspiring girls to tell more stories and find a doll that speaks to and represents them.

Dr Jen Richardson, a leading authority in educational audiology adds: “I’m honoured to have worked with Barbie to create an accurate reflection of a doll with behind-the-ear hearing aids. As an educational audiologist with over 18 years of experience working in hearing loss advocacy, it’s inspiring to see those who experience hearing loss reflected in a doll. I’m beyond thrilled for my young patients to see and play with a doll who looks like them.”

Lisa McKnight, executive vice president at Mattel and global head of Barbie and Dolls, says: “Barbie wholeheartedly believes in the power of representation and, as the most diverse doll line on the market, we are committed to continuing to introduce dolls featuring a range of skin tones, body types, and disabilities to reflect the diversity kids see in the world around them. It’s important for kids to see themselves reflected in product and to encourage play with dolls that don’t resemble them to help them understand and celebrate the importance of inclusion.”

The new dolls will be available from June 2022.

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