Hijab-wearing Barbie modelled on US Olympian Ibtihaj Muhammad

Nov 15, 2017, 00:24

Muhammad first made headlines during the 2016 Summer Olympics when she became the first Muslim-American woman to wear a hijab while competing for the United States.

Muhammad became the first U.S. Olympian to compete while wearing the Islamic head scarf during competitions in Rio de Janeiro a year ago, winning a bronze medal along with her teammates in the women's team sabre event. Do you like Barbie's new look? "I wore it to the Olympic games, so I wanted my Barbie to have the ideal winged liner and also to wear a hijab".

"Ibtihaj continues to inspire women and girls everywhere to break boundaries", the Barbie makers said.

The Barbie Sheros lineup, unveiled in 2015, included (from left) Emmy Rossum, Trisha Yearwood, Ava DuVernay, Sydney "Mayhem" Keiser, Kristin Chenoweth and Eva Chen.

Ibtihaj described the taunting and body shaming she faced as an athlete and how the doll captured the things which make her so different and so special.

The Barbie, designed in her likeness, has full fencing gear, including mask and sabre, with sneakers on her feet and a hijab around her head.

One of the latest additions is a Barbie with a hijab.

"Ibtihaj is an inspiration to countless girls who never saw themselves represented", Barbie's marketing vice president Sejal Shah Miller said in a statement. The doll will be the very first Barbie doll to wear a hijab and the event is considered to be historic.

Not only does her Barbie represent a whole new population of women, but it opens many more doors of creativity for children when they play with Barbie.

The first Barbie was created in 1959 by Handler, after Ruth watched her daughter play with paper dolls.

As part of Mattel's effort to make its collection of dolls more diverse, they added a doll in their "Sheroes" collection modelled after US Olympic fencer, Ibtihaj Muhammad.

Barbie however isn't the only brand that has recognised toy dolls could do with a little diversifying.

"It's a very humbling experience to even be in the same sentence with these women", she said.

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