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I get this. I really do. I can understand wanting to create a doll with no hair so that little kids undergoing chemo can feel a little less different. But beautiful? I have to admit, as the mother of a daughter, the way this is worded increases my angst every time I see it.

At first glance, this seems pretty noble. But let’s scratch at the surface of that statement just a little. You want a doll created with no hair so that little girls with no hair can feel “beautiful”? According to that statement, being beautiful means looking like someone who our culture has deemed pretty. Well, obviously. That is where the problem lies.

Let’s dig a little deeper, shall we? Why should girls have to identify with Barbie or princesses to feel pretty? Do you honestly think that an abnormally proportioned doll is going to make a little girl feel beautiful just because she’s also bald? Instead, why can’t they look in the mirror and just know they’re pretty?

We need to shine a big fat light on the real issue in our daughter’s (and son’s) lives – no one can measure up to our impossible standards of beauty. I don’t want my daughter to grow up being unhappy with herself. I want her to be strong, healthy, confident. Not constantly criticizing her appearance, dieting perpetually, always striving for the impossible.

Let’s teach our children that beauty comes from within and to not look to outside sources (Barbie and princesses) for validation. Let’s teach them that beauty is not in the style of your hair (or whether you have any at all), the color of your eyes, the shape of your body, the clothes you wear, the make-up on your face. Let’s help them become the happiest version of themselves. Let’s redefine beauty.

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  1. I grew up playing with barbies and have been on a diet since I was 10. I wish more people felt the way you do. My mom thought she was doing the right thing but I agree I would tell my daughter what is on the inside makes her pretty. Being confident is what is truly beautiful. But its so sad no matter what us as moms say they will see the billboards and the music videos and always feel not good enough…its so sad. I watched a re run of Facts of Life and Blair, who is supposed to be perfect looking and who I wanted to look like when I was younger, looks chubby and dumpy to me now. Its amazing how much our idea of beauty has changed in my lifetime. The standards today are impossible to live up to. Moms have a lot of work ahead of them protecting their daughters from eating disorders and low self esteem. Great post!!

    • Momma on the Rocks Momma on the Rocks says:

      True! It’s going to be an uphill battle to ensure my daughter feels good about herself and that’s so sad.

  2. This is a great post and so spot-on! I have such anxiety about trying to help my daughter find her beauty in this ridiculously complicated world…thanks for sharing 🙂

  3. I totally agree with you! Beauty is not in looks… beauty is within! Thanks for sharing this 🙂

  4. I love this! Thanks for sharing!

  5. AMEN, amen, Amen!

    • Momma on the Rocks Momma on the Rocks says:

      Thanks for visiting, guys! It’s such a tough topic and one that I’m not even sure how I will address yet. <3

  6. What a wonderful way for a little girl to feel like she belongs and is still pretty. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  7. Being a huge Disney fan, you be surprised how fickle and shallow the fandom is among some people. I for one never really related to a Princess based on her looks, but more on her personality, and how she acted as a woman. Hence, why my favorite Princess is Pocahontas or Mulan, when I am a redheaded and pale Scottish Irish woman. I think many little girls connect on that same level.

  8. I can see it from both sides. Yes, the ideal “beauty” comes from within. Still, if my four year old baby was sick and a baby princess doll without hair made her happy, I would do whatever it took to get it for her.

    • Momma on the Rocks Momma on the Rocks says:

      I completely agree. The issue I took was with the way the phrase was worded. I think it’s great for a child to have a doll to identify with. But I think the trouble lies in using the doll to help the child feel beautiful, instead of teaching them that they’re beautiful no matter what.

  9. Absolutely. oh, how terrible it is to be a female in our vain society.

  10. I agree with the one about the new Disney character.

  11. I always picked the Barbie I thought had the prettiest hair or outfit. I never compared my Barbie with how I looked or what I wore. I feel like most little girls wouldn’t think about whether they looked like their doll or not if we didn’t talk about it so much around them.

  12. It is a complicated culture we live in where we personify dolls and the use them to make girls feel pretty.

  13. Wonderful post! Thanks so much for sharing this!

  14. Stopping by from SITS. I have a little boy and with that comes a whole set of thoughts I have about his future but I’m sure that body image is something that weighs a lot heavier on your mind when you are the daughter of a little girl. It’s so tough because I definitely know that I was there! Thank you for sharing.

  15. I absolutely agree! Like you said, it is not about their making a doll they can relate to, but by saying to make one so they can feel “beautiful.” Beauty is who you are – not what you look like. It’s a shame that it’s probably true the little girls DO feel “ugly” because they have no hair. They should never feel like that in the first place! We need to stop holding the standard of beauty to things like princesses and learn to edify and raise up our children knowing they’re beautiful just for being themselves!

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