9 dolls we’d rather play with than Period Barbie

Not that we play with dolls, obviously. Ahem.

by silveraj

Remember Lammily, the Barbie-alternative that’s designed to look like a real woman? We’re big fans, obviously. Lammily’s latest playset is called Period Party, and includes info about menstruation as well as some tiny sanitary towel stickers.

Image: Lammily

We definitely need to talk to girls about periods, and this is a fun and sweet way to do that. But we’re not sure we’d have wanted to play with Period Barbie when we were little. If we were going to have dolls, we’d want ones that inspired us, that represented the best of what we could become – not the one week a month where we’re grumpy and feel gross.

So, with no disrespect whatsoever to Period Party (because it really is something worth talking about), here are 9 Barbies we wish had been in our toyboxes when we were small.

9. Pride Barbie

pride-barbie by SilverAJ
Illustration by @SilverAJ

Pride Barbie is queer and proud. She comes with a selection of potential partners – men, women and non-binary folks. She has rainbow hair (no, she won’t talk you through how she dyes it, try Pinterest) and a cat. Because cats are for everyone.

8. Coder Barbie

Illustration by SilverAJ
Illustration by @SilverAJ

Coder Barbie doesn’t get out much – she’s too busy making awesome things (and sometimes arguing with that n00b from Reddit who’s done one online course in front end development). Accessories include a tiny ergonomic keyboard and posture-correcting chair – it may not be glamorous, but neither is RSA.

7. Tech CEO Barbie

Tech CEO Barbie heads up a very successful tech company. She nurtured it from startup to multimillion-dollar industry-shaper, and in a valley of male-centric businesses, hers blazes a trail. Go Barbie. With young women so often discouraged from entering the tech industry, Tech CEO Barbie gives them someone to look up to.

6. Gamer Barbie

gamer-barbie by SilverAJ
Illustration by @SilverAJ

B4rb1e has a phone packed with mobile games, a bag of snacks to get her through late-night LAN sessions, a heavy-duty headset and an encyclopaedic knowledge of the Call of Duty franchise. She also has a kickass Pac Man clutch bag but no male equivalent: she dumped K3n when he called her a fake gamer girl.

5. Pay Gap Barbie

Like The Onion’s satirical CEO Barbie, Pay Gap Barbie is the quintessential businesswoman – suit and jacket, laptop, smartphone – with an equally successful male counterpart, sold separately. Only he would cost 19% more than her for ~reasons~.

4. Footballer Barbie

Illustration by @SilverAJ

Bend-it-like-Barbie doesn’t have time to debate why female footballers don’t get the respect they deserve given how much they’re kicking the guys’ asses – she’s too busy kicking balls. Note the potential for merchandising deals with FIFA 16: EA, if you’re reading this, our suggested tagline is “upsetting manbabies since 2016″.

3. YouTuber Barbie

Illustration by SilverAJ
Illustration by @SilverAJ

Hey guuuuys. YouTuber Barbie comes with her own camera – because she’s got a Get Ready With Me to film, you know? – and an adorable pug that has its own channel. Even though you’ve never heard of her, she inexplicably costs £20,000 and your 13 year old niece reeeallly wants one.

2. #ShoutingBack Barbie

Image: iStock/Doctor_bass

Remember when Lisa Simpson got a Malibu Stacy doll but all she said was things like “I wish they taught shopping at school!” and “Let’s bake some cookies for the boys!”?

Well, #ShoutingBack Barbie (inspired by the awesome Everyday Sexism Project‘s hashtag) is everything Lisa dreamt of and more. Pre-programmed phrases include “Tell me to ‘smile’ again, I dare you” and “Get the hell away from me.”

1. Lean In Barbie

Illustration by SilverAJ
Illustration by @SilverAJ

They might not know it yet, but Lean In Barbie is what many little girls really want to be. Inspired by Sheryl Sandberg’s legendary book, Lean In Barbie knows how to get what she wants, unashamedly promoting her talents and claiming her seat at the top table. She’s smart, she’s fierce, and every time you try to buy her, she negotiates the price up.

Honourable mention: Trans Barbie

The reason there are 9 Barbies and not a round 10 is that we originally conceived a Trans Barbie, because it’d be great to see doll companies being more representative and inclusive to trans people. But then we realised – Trans Barbie would just be any regular Barbie. You can buy her right now.


Main image and all illustrations are original works commissioned by Gadgette from @SilverAJ. You should check him out, he’s amazing.