Icon, legend, actress, activist and all-round star Laverne Cox has officially been honoured with her own Barbie doll, the first time a Barbie’s been based on a transgender person.
In an interview with People, she spoke about just how significant she felt it was for there to be a trans Barbie.
“What excites me most about her being out in the world is that trans young people can see her and maybe get to purchase her and play with her, and know that there’s a Barbie made by Mattel, for the first time, in the likeness of a trans person,” Cox said.
Given the sustained attacks on trans rights in the US (and in Australia), it’s more important than ever to uplift and celebrate trans youth.
Cox highlighted the fact 250 pieces of anti-trans legislation have been introduced in US states in this year alone.
“Access to gender-affirming healthcare has been denied by policies signed into law in my home state of Alabama, in Arkansas and other states,” she pointed out.
For her, the Barbie doll is a really important symbol of trans beauty and pride.
“[I think] that in this environment where trans kids are being attacked… this can also be a celebration of transness and also a space for them to dream, understand and be reminded that trans is beautiful,” she said.
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She also reflected on the significance of the doll for her personally.
“I begged my mother for a Barbie doll and she said no because I was assigned male at birth,” she said.
“When I was in my 30s, I was in therapy and telling my therapist that I was denied the opportunity to play with Barbie dolls.”
Her therapist told her that she should buy herself a Barbie doll for her inner child, which Cox went out and did.
What’s also particularly cool about the doll is just how involved Cox was in the design. Her outfit? Absolutely fkn killer, I would love a pair of those sparkly shoes and a red leather corset myself please.
The outfit also has multiple reveals (!!!) which is truly iconic. There’s a silver glitter catsuit, the red corset and a detachable gown. Tell me why this Barbie doll is dressed better than any celeb at the Met Gala in the last two years.
On the Barbie website, there’s a little description of the doll.
“As a four-time Emmy-nominated actress, Emmy-winning producer, and the first transgender woman of colour to have a leading role on a scripted TV show, Laverne Cox uses her voice to amplify the message of moving beyond societal expectations to live more authentically,” it said.
“She wears a triple-threat original design, featuring a deep red tulle gown gracefully draped over a dazzling, silver metallic bodysuit. Her hair is swept into glamorous Hollywood waves while dramatic makeup completes her look.”
Laverne Cox told People she gave a ton of feedback to the design team, especially around the doll’s hair.
“I was like, ‘can we make her look more like me? And more African American?’ And we had a conversation about highlights and lowlights because I’m blonde most of the time now, but I’m a Black girl so I need a dark root,” she explained.
It was also her idea to have the multi-layered outfit ‘cos she wanted the doll to have multiple outfit options but still be affordable.
The doll’s currently available on the Barbie website for USD$40 (AUD$56) if you want to treat yourself to arguably the world’s best dressed Barbie.