Toy giant Mattel recently announced that kids really want gender neutral toys – this announcement coincides with the launch of a new gender-free line of toys – and with the “woke” approach we’re all supposed to adopt.
Creativity and independence are huge selling points for toys today, so the name of Mattel’s new line, “Creatable World” is designed to appeal to parents seeking creative toys for kids. According to Mattel:
“In our world, dolls are as limitless as the kids who play with them. Introducing Creatable World™, a doll line designed to keep labels out and invite everyone in — giving kids the freedom to create their own customizable characters again and again.”
The dolls that make up creatable world can change more than just their hair or clothing – they can be any gender you (or your child) would like. You can choose a long haired doll, or a short haired version, and select a dress or pants, then change the gender as you wish.
“Toys are a reflection of culture and as the world continues to celebrate the positive impact of inclusivity, we felt it was time to create a doll line free of labels,” said Kim Culmone, Senior Vice President of Mattel Fashion Doll Design. “Through research, we heard that kids don’t want their toys dictated by gender norms. This line allows all kids to express themselves freely which is why it resonates so strongly with them. We’re hopeful Creatable World will encourage people to think more broadly about how all kids can benefit from doll play.”
While girls have happily played with toy soldiers and other “boy” toys for years – and boys are just as likely to mother baby dolls, the choice of gender has not been a component when it comes to toys.
Turning a block into a car and a plush animal into a baby are natural parts of pretend play – most kids that play with dolls and toys already use imagination to do so. By requiring kids to declare a doll to be male or female, the brand is limiting imagination – and choices.
Not surprisingly, some parents aren’t as happy about the new line of dolls as Mattel expects – according to the Family Research Council, some parents don’t want to embrace the new toys their kids have “demanded.”
Mattel’s introduction of these toys is just before the launch of the busy holiday shopping season; this year shoppers will vote with their dollars – and we should see just how much these new toys are in demand by actual kids.