Mattel’s “Totally Stylin’ Tattoo Barbie” is causing controversy and outrage nationwide, as concerned parents worry about the negative influence the doll may have on their daughters. However, there are least 3 good reasons why a tattooed Barbie can actually be a positive role model for a young girl. Read on to learn why the tattoo Barbie may be the most forward-thinking, self-esteem-boosting Barbie doll in years.
#1: Tattoo Barbie Encourages Young Artists
Unlike the Barbie dolls that come with everything already set up, from perfectly styled hair to perfectly pointed shoes, the “Totally Stylin’ Tattoo Barbie” comes with a set of options that encourages your daughter to be creative. The toy invites her to plan a unique look for her own doll with the tattoos, and to customize the doll’s clothes with stamps. By picking the images she likes best and placing them exactly where she wants them, you’re helping your daughter learn to make visual choices, and experiment creatively. This can build your daughter’s artistic confidence by making design feel fun and approachable.
#2: Tattoo Barbie Is Realistic
As much as girls play with dolls of grown women in order to work out fantasies of who they’d like to be when they themselves grow up, they also use these dolls to make sense of the women in their lives. When a girl casts her doll in a story while playing with it, the Barbie can be a stand-in for friends, neighbors, teachers, or relatives. The reality is that many people in the world have tattoos, and offering your daughter a chance to incorporate that into her play is not only healthy and harmless, but empowering. If tattoos are a part of what she sees in her daily life, giving her the chance to have that reflected in her toys helps affirm her perceptions of the world.
#3: A Tattoo Barbie Can Show You’re Paying Attention
Many girls who regularly play with Barbie dolls alter them, cutting their hair, or drawing makeup or tattoos on them with pens and markers. The idea of a Barbie that’s built for customization isn’t quite so shocking when you consider this fact. If you’ve noticed your daughter taking a marker to her dolls, offering her a “Totally Stylin’ Tattoo Barbie” along with a few words about how you noticed she’s been drawing on her Barbies and thought she might like one that comes with designs to apply can be a chance for you to show your daughter that you care, accept, notice, and encourage her in her favorite forms of play. There’s nothing more valuable to a girl’s self-esteem than this kind of parental support.