Video: 'It's very revolutionary' – Mattel release first hijab-wearing Barbie doll



Associated Press

Mattel Inc., the maker of Barbie, says it will sell a doll modelled after Ibtihaj Muhammad, an American fencer who competed in last year's Olympics while wearing a hijab.

The toy company modelled the doll on US Olympian Ibtihaj Muhammad who wore a hijab while competing in last year's Olympics.
Source: Associated Press

The 31-year old medallist couldn't be happier about the new doll.

"I had so many moments as an athlete, where I didn't feel included, where I was often in spaces where there was a lack of representation, so to be in this moment as a US Olympian to have Mattel, such a global brand diversify their toy line to include a Barbie Doll that wears hijab is very moving to me, and I feel that it's very revolutionary.

"I'm happy for our youth to have, you know - to have a doll that wears hijab. I think it's an amazing moment for all of us," she said.

Mattel Inc. says the doll will be available online next fall. The doll is part of the Barbie Shero line that honours women who break boundaries.

Muhammad proudly posed on the red carpet with the doll, and was happy that the toy company listened to her, especially when it came to body image.

"There was so much about the doll that was important to me. I know as a kid I was bullied for having larger legs, and sport taught me to embrace my body and to love my body and the strength that it could produce.

"I think that having strong legs helped me win a medal at the Olympic Games, so I wanted my legs to be larger, more athletic legs, toned legs. And I am very into eyeliner, so I wanted a strong-winged cat eye. And Mattel listened to everything, everything even down to the fabric of the hijab. I think they did a great job."

Past dolls have included gymnast Gabby Douglas and Selma director Ava DuVernay.

Muhammad, the first American to compete at the Olympics while wearing a hijab, won a bronze medal in fencing at the 2016 Rio Games.

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