Inspire a young mind with the best Barbie dolls

Barbie has come a long way since her introduction as a fashion doll in the late 1950s. In recent years Mattel has introduced much more inclusive and inspirational dolls. The brand has taken the plastic figurine from a stereotypical blonde perpetuating unrealistic body expectations to encompass different ethnicities, promote smart career women and provide more inclusive body shapes and types.

Reach for the stars

Staff Pick

Barbie Astronaut and Space Scientist Doll Set FCP65

You can’t get much more aspirational than dreaming about being an astronaut. This two doll set offers a space-tacular team-up of an astronaut and a space scientist to inspire STEM interest and learning.

£27 at Amazon

Hot wheels

Barbie Doll and Wheelchair GGL22

A complete game-changer for little girls in similar situations and another notable step towards being more inclusive, you can now get a Barbie in a wheelchair.

£13 at Amazon

Big hair, don’t care

Barbie Bold Stripes Curvy Fashionistas Doll FXL45

Mattel’s “Fashionista” range goes a long way to promote body positivity as it comes in four body types, nine skin tones, four eye colours and 11 hair colours and styles.

£9 at Amazon

Hot stuff

Barbie Firefighter Doll GFX29

Seeing feminine dolls wearing the uniforms of what were traditionally considered to be men’s jobs goes a long way to challenge gender stereotypes.

£12 at Amazon

Finstastic

Barbie Dreamtopia Sparkle Mermaid Doll GFL82

This sparkly mermaid Barbie boasts magical swimming motion when in water and rainbow-coloured light-up action that little ones will love.

£18 at Amazon

Ice cool

Barbie Polar Marine Biologist Doll GDM45

Penguin Included

A partnership with National Geographic should inspire interest in the South Pole and Antarctica with Marine Biologist Barbie and her adorable penguin friend.

£17 at Amazon

Legendary

Barbie Dreamtopia Barbie and Unicorn FXT26

Everyone loves unicorns and Barbie is no exception. This set includes a fabulous rainbow-maned unicorn that will help spark imaginative play and storytelling.

£48 at Amazon

World class

Barbie Daisy Doll and Travel Set FWV26

With Stickers

Realistically-proportioned Daisy is ready to go on adventures around the world with accessories that include headphones, a camera and a wheely cool suitcase.

£23 at Amazon

Twinning

Barbie Baby Doctor Playset with Baby Dolls and Accessories DVG10

Let your child explore their nurturing side with the “baby doctor Barbie” set. Or, as you might want to call her, “Pediatrician Barbie.”

£20 at Amazon

Robochic

Barbie Robotics Engineer Doll FRM09

There’s more STEM fun to be had with the Robotics Engineer Barbie who comes complete with a robo-buddy, laboratory goggles and a laptop.

£16 at Amazon

High fliers

Barbie and Ken Pilot Doll and Accessory Set FNY33

We love the contemporary camp vibe of this set that depicts Barbie as the aeroplane pilot and her special friend Ken as the beautifully-groomed flight attendant.

£50 at Amazon

Girl power

Barbie Five Career Dolls VIP Set FJP88

Amazing Gift

Finally, the only thing better than one inspiring “Career” Barbie doll is a set of five. Show your little one they can be anything they want with these dolls that cover a range of cool careers.

£50 at Amazon

#YouCanBeAnything

While it’s easy to criticise the Barbies of yesteryear, Mattel is making a difference in the children’s toy market with its contemporary ranges of Barbies that are designed to inspire and encourage children to be anything they want to be, even an Astronaut.

What Mattel should also be applauded for is making the Barbie brand a lot more accessible to everyone including models with different body shapes, skin tones and even a Barbie that comes in a wheelchair.

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