move over barbie: new afro-ed “buhle” dolls show brown girls their true beauty

July 19, 2017
2.9K Picks

Barbie who?

Thanks to the latest and greatest from London-based company Bounce Essentials Africa, the famous blondie is one step closer to being ousted from her throne. Introducing the company’s new Sibahle Collection featuring the Nobuhle “Buhle” doll, equipped with beautiful brown skin and 4c hair to match.

If THAT weren’t enough, smell it… and be greeted with a sweet vanilla scent. Amazing? Yes. About time? Yes again.

Originally, the 100% black women-owned business–founded in 2016 by Caroline Hlahla and Khulile Vilakazi-Ofosu–specialized in natural, textured extensions for the modern black woman. But with the presence of their new doll, they succeed in enforcing organic beauty standards with the market’s most porous customers: The children.

Growing up with dolls that don’t look like us fosters a confusion and disconnect–often leading to internalized resentment.

How is one supposed to feel beautiful when the most desired products represent what they’re not? Now, no longer will little brown girls need to play “hair” with their white barbies, then wonder why their hair doesn’t replicate.

Nebuhle literally means “beautiful person” in Zulu, and with the definition of beauty shifting everyday, what better way to teach a brown child their worth than to see it reflected and desired? The beautiful dolls, dressed as modern African Princesses, are a crucial step in redirecting an old narrative. And as more brown children feel seen, the more connected to their power they become.

Check out some of the “Buhle” collection below!