Tokidoki Tattooed Barbie: Totally Trendy or Way Out of Line?

The new tattooed Barbie was recently introduced by Mattel, sports a pink bob and lots of visible tattoos. Is she sending the right image to impressionable young girls? Take our poll.

Barbie has gone through another reinvention and she is now inked-up and donning a hot pink bob.

The new "tokidoki" Barbie doll, which means "sometimes" in Japanese from Mattel was introduced in mid-October and not without a lot of  fanfare—good and not so good. This isn't the first tattooed doll, nope, the first was in 2009 and she was called 'Totally stylin' Barbie. However, her tattoos were stick-on and removable.

So, what's the big hype then? Well, in addition to the pink 'do, the Gold Label Barbie collector doll sports a pair of tight leopard print leggings and various colorful tattoos. In fact, her tattoos, are coiling Chinese dragons traveling from her chest, up the front of her neck, around to her back and on her forearms.

Here is how the Barbie online magazine Barbie Collector describes her: "She pops on a pink miniskirt, logo leggings and black top with signature skull heart and bones, carries a large bag from the brand, then adds bracelets, a belt, and sky-high sparkly silvery shoes! This funky fashionista features trendy tattoos and a pink bob. With cactus friend, Bastardino, by her side, she’s ready for fun in fashion-forward form."

Bastardino, oh my!

Lots of Hype

This new $50 doll has a lot of parents up in arms over her appearance, forcing Mattel to issue a statement:

“Barbie has been dressed by more than 70 fashion designers over the years.  From Versace to Vera Wang, Tarina Tarantino to Christian Louboutin, Barbie has sported an endless array of styles.  Many of Barbie’s most pop-culture couture outfits have been designed for the adult doll collector.  The tokidoki Barbie is a perfect example of a limited-edition doll sold online and through select retail locations such as tokidoki boutiques. The tokidoki Barbie doll was designed by Simone Legno and is reflective of tokidoki’s larger-than-life style featuring eye-popping designs and colorful characters.”

I remember when I got my first Barbie and she was a heck of a lot different. Yeah, she still had the great figure--teeny-tiny waist, long legs, blonde hair and pretty much looked like your typical O.C. mom today. But that was back then. Over the years, the Barbie industry has become a billion dollar one and it doesn’t seem to be losing any of its steam.

Pushing the Envelope

The question is, since so many young girls are impressionable by why that see in magazines and TV shows, is Barbie maybe pushing the envelope a little too far with her latest transformation?

Having grown up in the Midwest, I’d say yes. Midwest moms are probably up in arms about this new Barbie. But here in Southern California where tattoos are about as common as implants and Mercedes-Benz luxury cars on every corner, not so much.

Resident and grandma Sheri Stalwart says, "I'd never buy the doll for my grandchild who is 8. What is wrong with the regular Barbie who is a career woman? I think this latest version sends the wrong message."

Adds Annie Berryhill another resident, "I have only sons, and they both have tattoos, although I don’t. I am not sure that I would purposely purchase a tattooed Barbie for my granddaughter, if I had one. I would rather non-tattoed to be the norm. I wouldn’t have a problem if she put tattoos on her own Barbie though!"

And one more voice, resident Jenny Mitchell says, "I personally would NEVER buy a tattooed Barbie for my daughter.  I don’t even like those dolls with tons of makeup and short skirts. I think if you’re over the age 25 and you want to get a tattoo, then fine, but for young girls? No way. 

"I think it’s a shame young teens are even allowed to get tattoos at all.  The fad will fade. Then what are they stuck with? An inked butterfly? For the rest of their lives? However, that said, at least it’s better than the pregnant Barbie Mattel came out with a while back. That was eventually discontinued, as I bet tattoo Barbie will be, too. I’m not saying tattoos are bad (for those of you adults who have them), they should just be left to adults, not pushed on children."

The New Cabbage Patch Kid

While this Barbie may be the hottest toy since the Cabbage Patch Kids and probably the most requested on Christmas lists, good luck trying to find one.

The doll is completely sold out and according to Mattel it has no idea if and when more will be available. It only produced around 7,500 and last week a morning show actually spent $500 on eBay so it could show its audience.

I'm wondering is Ken headed for his own tattoo or three, and what does he have to say about his lady love and her new look? What's next, Prostitute Barbie? Pothead Barbie?

If the tattoo Barbie becomes available in time for the holidays, will you buy one for your daughter or will you say no way?

Tell us in comments and take our poll.

lisa December 14, 2011 at 02:52 AM
For all the ridiculous mothers who think that a tattoo barbie is a bad influence and is gonna make your child grow up to be a demon! I hope none of you have tattoos or have any friends with them, cause I wouldn't want to be a friend of yours if you think that a tattoo ed person is a bad role model! Let me ask you something else "ALL YOU REALLY GOOD ROLE MODEL MOTHERS" ? Because they make babies for all your babies or kids to play with, does that make you uneasy that your child is gonna run out and want to have s baby or are your kids not allowed to play with dolls either! It's totally ridiculous, almost every toy out there someone could have a beef with!!! BUT THEY ARE TOYS PEOPLE..... THEY ARE SOLD IN TOYS R US... YES THAT IS A TOY STORE!!! OR IN ANY OTHER STORE WITH A TOYYYY SECTION!!!!
Debbie L. Sklar December 14, 2011 at 04:42 PM
Lisa: Thank you for your comments regarding the Tokodaki tattoo Barbie. I continue to be amazed how many people have been moved by this story and who continue to comment on it.
Heather December 19, 2011 at 03:13 PM
I am a mom. A specialty nurse. I have ink. Full sleeve. Back. Neck. Hip. Other arm... I am a fantastic person, great mother and I dare you to find a more caring nurse and person anywhere. I have a blue streak in my hair. But guess what? I have always taught my children to be tolerant and accepting of people regardless of their looks and abilities and to look at the person's true self to base their opinions on. It's sad when we cannot show acceptance and teach that to children. People need to loosen up and realize it's not the people with tattoos that are screwing up our kids, it's those that can't get off their all might soapbox against them. My daughter (5 years old) has one under the tree for Christmas this year. And I don't think it makes me a bad parent. Get over yourselves people. (Amd side note.... I'm the "cool mom" of all the friends.
Debbie L. Sklar December 19, 2011 at 10:27 PM
Heather: Thanks for your comments and glad to hear that you are one of those "cool moms."
Chrissy December 26, 2011 at 01:23 AM
I have tattoos and I think that this Barbie is adorable, it's a doll not a role model. Toki doki out this doll out for serious collectors just like all of the other designers have done in the past. Having tattoos does not mean you are a convicted felon or have a criminal past. I have a ton of tattoos and I have a great job, it's just a form of art that people choose to express on their skin.


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