Mattel, the makers of Barbie, have launched a new range of dolls in a variety of skin tones that are 'free from labels' and 'gender inclusive'.


Aimed at children aged 6 plus, each of the 6 Creatable World doll kits comes with 2 different hair options (long and short), a skirt, trousers and a range of accessories that offer 'endless styling opportunities' for the children who play with them 'to express themselves freely'.

The new dolls are a "reflection of culture," says Kim Culmone, senior vice president of Mattel Fashion Doll Design.

"Through research," Kim says, "we heard that kids don't want their toys dictated by gender norms. This line allows all kids to express themselves freely which is why it resonates so strongly with them.

"We’re hopeful Creatable World will encourage people to think more broadly about how all kids can benefit from doll play."

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The Creatable World doll kits, £34.99 each, have just arrived in the UK and are on sale at Smyths Toys.

What are people saying about these new 'gender inclusive' dolls?

We haven't managed to get our hands on one yet here in the MadeForMums office, but we did ask parents in our Facebook community what they thought of the idea, and the responses from them have been pretty encouraging so far.

"My son will be 6 in [2 months] and I think he would love these!" says Michelle B. "He actually likes to dress his teddies up so I think he would be all over these!

"There is no real ‘doll’ for a boy other than action men, so if these are aimed at both sexes I think it’s a massive breakthrough in terms of breaking away from the 'girls toys..boys toys' debate!"

And Abi E is pretty keen on them too, saying: "Wow, I think this is brilliant! It’s the beginning of change for the toy world.

"In a world where children are growing up thinking they are supposed to look a certain way depending on whether they are male or female, it can be a lot of pressure.

"Hopefully this will take a little of pressure off our kids and they can express their individuality more."




Helen Brown
Helen BrownHead of Content Delivery

Helen is author of the classic advice book Parenting for Dummies and a mum of 3. Before joining MadeForMums, she was Head of Community at Mumsnet and also the Consumer Editor of Mother & Baby.