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Olympic Athlete Inspires First Hijab Wearing Barbie

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Barbie is embracing diversity. A hijab-wearing Barbie has now been unveiled. The new doll is designed after  US Olympic athlete Ibtihaj Muhammad. She was the first US athlete who competed in the 2016 Rio Olympics wearing a hijab.

The doll was unveiled at Glamour’s Women of the Year Live Summit as part of Barbie’s Shero line. The line celebrates female heroes including Ashley Graham, Gabby Dougas, and Trisha Yearwood.

“I’m excited to just partner with a brand that I know honours powerful women who are breaking barriers and whose sole goal is to impact the future leaders of tomorrow,” said Muhammad. “To be included in this conversation is very humbling and I’m over the moon about this whole thing.”

Muhammad worked with the company to design the doll, and it will be released in 2018.

She says that it is really cool to see herself in the doll. “It says my name on the back and it has a fencing mask and the little sabre. I just love it.”

The body shape of the new Barbie also resembles her body. The athlete has larger legs which are more toned. It also has her signature eyeliner.

The athlete talks about the importance of having a Barbie who wears a hijab.

“There has never been a Barbie doll to wear a hijab before. I’m really excited to have this moment happen in my life and also for all these little girls now who can shop for Barbie doll that may look them, may wear a hijab like they do, or like their mom does, or like a friend does. But also have kids who aren’t Muslim, who don’t wear a hijab, to also have the opportunity to play with a doll that wears a hijab,” – Ibtihaj Muhammad

Barbie has been making efforts to add diversity to its line. It also introduced different body types like curvy, tall and petite. There are seven skin types, 22 eye colours and 24 hairstyles in Barbie.

“The product is evolving to offer more choices to make the line more reflective of the world girls see around them,” said Mattel spokeswoman Michelle Chidoni, according to reports.

Also Read: Barbie comes up with new dolls that break stereotypes

Picture Credit: People