Remember when that artist, Nickolay Lamm, announced that he was working on a fashion doll meant to be a more realistic alternative to Barbie? There’s been a lot of buzz for Lammily, the doll whose stupid name doesn’t stop her from being a symbol of self-love. You can now pre-order your very own doll, who’s meant to have the measurements of an average 19-year-old, and you even have the choice to add a pack of stickers to your order… that look like cellulite.
Yep. You can customize your Lammily with the help of stickers that represent acne, freckles, moles, tattoos, bruises, dirt stains, and pretty much anything else you can imagine. Lots of bloggers are getting pumped about it, and I’m sort of feeling it too! Sort of!
I mean, I can see my younger self getting excited about the ability to cover my dolls with scars and wounds (saving me the trouble of coloring on them with Sharpie whenever the whim strikes to make a Frankenstein Barbie), but I’m not sure stick-on cellulite is the solution to a body image crisis. Where is the acne coming from if dolls don’t have pores? Don’t stretch marks look kind of odd on a plastic body that doesn’t have any variation in its skin tone? And aren’t we still reinforcing the idea of a “normal body” if this still-thin brunette is the new example of diversity?
I’m not trying to rain on the parade for no reason, but I feel like you could accomplish this goal of celebrating real women’s bodies by making a line of dolls with different shapes, skin colors, and imperfections already printed on them. Make some with acne scars. Make some with cellulite bumps on their thighs. Make some with cesarean scars, if you really want to. Make them in a million different shades and with a bunch of different hair textures. I don’t really see young girls growing to accept the beauty and diversity of womanhood if we’re still just telling them that people’s bodies start off thin and white and clean and pretty until they collect various marks and scars. It just strikes me as… an odd way to go about it.
That being said, though? I’m really glad that people are trying to make a difference. I’m really glad that you can add tattoos to Barbies now. I’m really glad that, once we hammer out the details, kids are going to to start growing up in a culture that sucks a lot, lot less. Lammily might not be The Answer, but she’s an interesting place to start! I hope she recovers from all those gnarly burn marks.