Are Modern Princess Dolls Good Role Models for our Little Girls?|Do Princess Dolls Present a Poor Bo

Published: 23rd November 2011
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Everybody loves the Disney Princesses right? No one can argue the influence they have on our young girls in today's society. So why doesn't Disney use that influence to provide our youth with products that present a healthy, positive and realistic lifestyle and body image? Instead, little girls see unattainable physical attributes. Shouldn't society try and present average sized princesses to exemplify the average girl? Would part of the fantasy of fairytales and cartoons be lost with such lifelike depictions of women, or would a more accurate portrayal be even more popular with our smallest princesses?

Little girls are usually drawn to the princess characters they hear about in stories or see, so when Disney brought all their princesses together in a little pack, little girls everywhere were in their glory. When you observe all of the Disney princesses simultaneously you see that they are all rather skinny. Snow White starts things off at a fairly normal body size and instead of growing larger or maintaining the same size and shape the princesses slowly start to disappear. The Disney Princess character that comes closest to representing an average or normal body size is Nani from Lilo and Stitch, but she doesn't classify as a princess. Because Nani wasn't a princess and was never really emulated by young girls like the other princesses, she never became that popular and therefore the desire to be like her wasn't ever a big fad. What if one of the princesses was overweight? Could that be seen as representing an unhealthy lifestyle and an unhealthy body image for women? Why must they all be so thin and unrealistic looking?

Since the Barbie Doll was so hugely popular, it was only a matter of time that the shape and style of Barbie would transform into other popular women, and the Disney Princesses too took on Barbie's shape. Barbie was the original tall, thin fashion doll and then other similar dolls were developed Skipper, Ariel, Cinderella, Belle, Jasmine, Aurora, Snow White, Pocahontas, Mulan and many others. The popularity of this doll covers the globe. Two Barbie dolls are purchased every second. The doll's popularity is undeniable. It only makes sense that the power of Disney and the power of Barbie would come together to create a money-making, little girl influencing kingdom.

This discussion leads us to the next obvious question; what is the normal size of a woman in America? There are lots of different opinions, but most come to the conclusion that the average American woman is 5 feet 4 inches tall, approximately 140 pounds and wears a size 14. We all know from shopping for clothes that one standard of measurement doesn't exist when it comes to clothes so it's hard to pinpoint exactly what is a size 14. But it is easy to picture a woman who is 5 feet 4 inches tall and weighs 140 pounds - you could possibly be one. The average woman's bust is between 36 inches and 37 inches which is a B cup and the average waist is between 30 inches and 34 inches, with hips that measure 40 inches to 42 inches. Unfortunately these measurements are not replicated in the Barbie dolls that our little girls are playing with. If the Princess Belle or Cinderella doll that your daughter plays with were to have the same measurements as a real woman she'd have to be 7'2" and 101 pounds and a size 4. Her bust would be 39 inches which would be a FF cup, her waist would be 19 inches which just happens to be the same circumference as her head and her hips would be 33 inches. These measurements aren't achievable by humans. In order to possess the same proportions as a Princess Ariel doll the average American woman would have to be 24 inches taller, 6 inches smaller in the waist, 5 inches bustier and have a neck 3 inches longer.

If a real Princess Jasmine actually had the doll's body she'd only have half a liver and a few inches of intestine. It is pertinent that humans have multiple feet of intestines so that they can properly digest what they eat. With only a few inches of intestine, Princess Jasmine would be on the toilet a lot with chronic diarrhea and overall malnutrition. She also wouldn't be able to support her own head due to a neck twice the size of the average human's and she'd have to walk or crawl on all fours because her large chest would cause her to fall forward and her small feel wouldn't be able to support her.

The manufacturers of popular toys such as Disney, Mattel and others have the means by which to encourage a healthy lifestyle and good self-esteem for our youth. But instead, they contribute to an unattainable body image for young girls, and seem to ignore the possible harm that it can and does cause. Is the solution to have bigger princess dolls and Barbies? Is the solution to represent all sizes, shapes, colors and ethnicities within these very influential plastic imitations of us? Is there ever going to be a role model that satisfies everyone's expectations or is it all based on the individual? The specific solution isn't clear, but what is clear is that there is an incredible foundation for someone to change the unrealistic and unattainable body image being presented to young girls, so who's going to be the first? And will it sell?

This article is courtesy of Everything Princesses, your one stop shop for all things princess for your little girl ages 2 to 10 including princess dolls, toys, dress up clothes and princess wall art.

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