Has the millennial #selfcare trend gone too far? My bank account says yes, and so does Mattel’s announcement that they are now releasing a line of self-care Barbies. If only we’d had these dolls in the 90s, so my Barbies could go on the South Beach Diet with my mom. Mattel actually partnered with Headspace to create this line, which consists of various nearly identical spa-day playsets focusing on meditation, physical fitness, and self-care by encouraging “daily routines.” Because that’s what kids love: routines. I, for one, can’t wait for them to follow this lineup with a line of Barbies that have gone into credit card debt from getting stoned and convincing themselves they need new bath bombs one too many times. Or perhaps one who lost all her friends and family because she stayed home for too many “self-care” days and they assume she died. The possibilities are endless. As Betches’ resident doll roaster, it is my sacred duty to now roast these dolls. Luckily, they’re so zen they can take it.
The Breathe With Me Barbie is able to lead kids through five meditations, which I’ll admit is an improvement from the days when Barbie said sh*t like “Math is hard!” and gave people eating disorders. Look, I’m not saying it’s bad for kids to meditate. It is objectively good for kids to meditate, but what kid wants to meditate while they’re in the middle of a f*cking playdate? This doll is a one-way ticket to not having your kid invited over again. I can picture it now:
Mom: How was your playdate, hon?
Child: Uhh…okay but in the middle of it Kimmy pulled out a Barbie wearing yoga pants and made us sit in silence for 15 minutes while it led us through a body scan.
**Mom blocks Kimmy’s mom’s number and pretends not to see her at Kiss-And-Ride for the rest of the year**
Tbh, I genuinely envy the Barbie Spa Doll’s lifestyle. She is described as someone who “soaks away the day with spa and bath products.” In other words, Spa Barbie is me on unemployment. She comes with a brush, a candle, a neck pillow, an eye mask and set of bath bombs. This doll is living the dream. She also comes with a rubber ducky, which I’m pretty positive would get her ass laughed out of the spa. The best part is that Mattel describes her outfit as “a comfy chic look”. Need I remind you, this “look” is just a towel and flip-flops. So, thanks to Mattel’s self-care Barbies, the next time I’m late to a function because I was sitting on my bed in my towel, staring at the wall for 45 minutes, I will simply claim I was just changing out of my “comfy chic look” into something more elegant.
The Barbie Spa Doll also has her own dog, which she has apparently brought to the spa with her. He even has his own floatation device, which suggests that she is bringing him into the water. This is unacceptable spa etiquette and should not be taught to children. If I was at Spa Castle and someone got in the hot tub with a dog, I would demand a refund. And don’t even try to tell me this is an emotional support animal. You’re at a spa. That’s all the emotional support you need.
The Barbie Fizzy Bath Doll is basically the Barbie spa doll, but she comes with her own bathtub, suggesting that she is at home. And to really drive home that Barbie is just your average millennial, they even gave her a little succulent next to her bathtub! How cute. In related news, succulents are officially played out now.
Of all the dolls, the Barbie Fizzy Bath Doll is the one I can most get behind. I mean, she’s essentially just a Barbie with a really nice bathtub. Sounds normal. I’m honestly surprised it didn’t already exist. Not really breaking any new ground with this one. The only thing that bothers me a bit is the description: “Kids can practice self-care as they help Barbie® doll recharge with this spa-themed playset that lets them play out a classic moment—a glittery, fizzy bath!” While yes, taking a bath is a classic self-care practice, do kids really need to be learning about own how utterly relaxing it is to slip into a warm fizzy bath after a long week of pretending to like the idiots you work with? Isn’t life going to beat them down enough without Mattel training them for it?
Also, as a sidenote, Mattel classifies this Barbie as “brunette”… which… like…. ok. Moving on.
Only slightly different (and I do mean ever so slightly) than Barbie Fizzy Bath Doll is Barbie Face Mask Spa Day, who comes complete with her own tubs of dough to construct face masks out of. I have spent every Sunday night since 2016 applying at least one face mask in the hopes that it would undo the emotional damage from my blackout the night before, and never once have I molded the mask onto my own face like clay. So Barbie is already better at self-care than me. It’s cool, I’m fine.
But if you read the description for this Barbie, it’s actually pretty f*cked up. First, the Barbie comes with a marker, and kids are instructed to “use the included marker to create blemishes on the doll’s face.” Oh no, I do not like the way this is going. After molding the face mask onto Barbie’s face, which we already discussed is unrealistic, here’s what happens next, per Mattel’s own instructions: “remove the mask, wipe the doll’s face with the towel and the blemishes have disappeared—what a healthy glow!”
Okay, f*ck you Mattel. Everybody knows that doing a face mask isn’t going to magically make your blemishes disappear—you just do the face masks because they were on sale at Sephora and the gold ones look cute on your Instagram story. But that’s not the biggest issue. Teaching kids that blemishes are anything other than a normal part of life and need to be excised from one’s face is one thing. But teaching them that they can be eliminated with one face mask and the swipe of a towel? Now that is criminal. Yet another set of unrealistic beauty expectations thanks to Barbie!
Okay, we really did not need a doll for this. This bitch is just going to sleep. Next.
This Barbie is the most sinister of all. She comes with her own yoga mat, weights, and a hula hoop. Her dog also comes with its own set of weights, because society doesn’t place enough pressure on dogs as it is to be fit. I would have loved to be a fly on the wall in this pitch meeting: “What if we… now hear me out… give the dog its own set of weights so it can do bicep curls along with Barbie?” “Glen, you son of a bitch, you’ve done it again! That’s genius!” Meanwhile, the one woman in the meeting is like, “…but dogs don’t have thumbs…?” and she gets told to stop being negative. Also, when was the last time you went to a workout class that involved a hula hoop? Ah yes, I remember it well: it was the 35th of Neveruary.
Hula hoop ridiculousness aside, this doll is the person who shows up first to every yoga class, sits directly in front of the teacher, and does headstands while everyone else is supposed to be in child pose. This doll oms really loud at the end of class in a really performative way that you can tell goes against the whole point of om-ing in the first place. This doll #livelaughloves and wears $500 fitness outfits. Stay away from this doll.
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Mattel, aka the company that introduced us to Barbie and unrealistic beauty standards for women, just released a new line of Ken dolls featuring 15 “new looks” for Ken and every single one of them looks like they’re personal friends with Nick Viall. Last year, in an effort to make Barbie more diverse, Mattel did a similar remake for Barbie, debuting a variety of new skin tones and body shapes. Now, the company is looking to do the same for Ken, except this time it appears their theme was less about “diversity” and more about “dudes who would snap you a dick pic after one meeting.” Somebody at Mattel clearly took those RompHim ads to heart. I wouldn’t be surprised if each one of these new dolls came with a voice box that said stuff like, “I’m sure I have a condom somewhere,” and “She’s like a sister to me!” No word yet one what accessories these new Ken dolls come with, but I’m fairly sure they each have a fidget spinner, android phone, and a pocket full of dirty-ass change that will get all over the place when they pass out fully clothed on Barbie’s bed.
Much like the fuckboys we meet IRL, Mattel’s new Fuckboy Ken collection represents the full range of shitty dudes we’ve all had the pleasure of meeting in our twenties. Each of these new Kens is their own special fuckboy snowflake, so here is our breakdown of each of these new Kens and how his relationship with Barbie will probably play out.
Festival Fuckboy Ken
Malibu Barbie met this Ken at Coachella when the two of them briefly touched hands while buying molly from the same guy. After blacking out and losing their friends, the two of them spent a whirlwind afternoon hopping from tent to tent, making out in public, and posting approximately 200,000 Instagrams together with captions like #soulmates and #festivallove. By the end of the night one, they decided they were in love, but are separated when Barbie’s drunk AF friends finally find her and Skipper pukes on his shoes. Barb will spend the next week pretending to not think about him when she’s really thinking about him non-stop, only to run into him on the second weekend rolling face with a Bratz doll. The Bratz doll will introduce herself as Ken’s girlfriend, and Ken will call Barbie “Britney” by mistake. Barbie will then spend the next 20 minutes deleting all the evidence of their affair and will miss Chance The Rapper’s set because she was so pissed.
College Fuckboy Ken
Barbie dated Ken for the majority of college. And by “dated” I mean “would hook up with him every weekend and get in public fights at the campus Starbucks during the week.” Despite the fact that he and Barbie have attended every frat and sorority event together and she’s spent the past three 4th of Julys at the beach with his family, Ken refuses to let Barbie say that she is his girlfriend and regularly attempts to slide into her friend’s DMs. Barbie will finally become his girlfriend after Ken sees her at the club breathing next to another guy and loses his shit. The two of them are married now and their entire friend group is really concerned for their future children.
Friend Zoned Fuckboy Ken
Barbie has been friends with this Ken for years and while of course she knows he’s totally in love with her, she just tries to ignore that and keep things friendly. One night after a particularly bad fight with College Fuckboy Ken, Barbie will have one too many glasses of Champagne and make out with Friend Zone Ken after he tells her should be treated “like a princess” or some shit. Barbie will immediately regret this and invite Ken to coffee to talk it out, at which point he’ll totally fucking lose it and start crying in a Grumpy’s. Barbie will spend the rest of college avoiding eye contact with him and Ken will get super involved in a Men’s Rights Activism page on Reddit.
Maybe Gay Fuckboy Ken
Things were going great between Barbie and this Ken until her gay BFF, Earring Magic Ken, took her aside to say that he saw her new Ken’s torso on Grindr. The two of them then set out on an elaborate scheme to catch Ken in his lies, but ultimately chicken out before actually inviting him over and just kind of agree to share him. Barbie continued dating him for another six months and it’s low-key the healthiest relationship she’s ever had.
Religious Fuckboy Ken
Barbie met this fuckboy when she accidentally showed up early to a house party. The two of them made small talk on a roof which turned into a deep chat that had her so distracted thinking about their future wedding that she didn’t realize he was drinking water, and not straight vodka like her. After two full hours of chatting about the meaning of life, Barbie hit him with a “Do you want to come back to my place?” to which he’ll reply, “Actually I don’t do that but I’d love to invite you to come to church with me on Sunday.” Then Barbie will jump off the roof and die.
Foreign Fuckboy Ken
Barbie met this Ken while spring breaking in Ibiza. At first he set off her gaydar, but then she realized he was just European. While he has literally no personality and barely speaks English, he’s hot and has a cool accent and knows club promoters so she just kind of rolled with it. His name is Stefano…or Sergio? Or maybe it’s just Steve. Barbie can’t remember. Either way, the two will part ways on good terms, making tentative plans that they know will never happen to visit each other in the future. He still likes some of her Insta posts, but only the really thot-y ones.
Rich Fuckboy Ken
This guy is literally the worst, but Barbie entertains his presence because he’s rich AF and pays for everything. Though she knows in her heart that she’s only being invited to “chill” on his yacht because 10 other Barbies said no, she agrees to go mainly for the Instas. She’ll entertain the idea of marrying him but then they’ll talk for five minutes and she’ll be like “fuck that” and hook up with one of his friends instead. This happens once a year and Barbie kind of loves it.
Secret Fuckboy Ken
Barbie only agreed to go out with this Ken after a particularly enlightening drunk brunch where she promised her entire friend group she was done with fuckboys and would only date nice guys from now on. Sadly, he turned out to be the greatest fuckboy of all. Between never texting back and sending her Facebook invites for his improv shows, this Ken will somehow manage to take up a year and half of Barbie’s precious time. He’ll end up dumping Barbie for a high school senior who thinks he’s “sooooooo interesting” and Barbie will be forced to side-eye all of his Facebook statuses about being a male feminist for the rest of her days on this Earth.
This Ken doll is just Dean. Barbie fell in love with him on The Bachelorette, just like all the rest of us, and is eagerly awaiting the end of the season so she can find out if he’s single and start desperately tweeting selfies at him until he blocks her.
The Wanna-Be Fuckboy Ken
Barbie met this fuckboy when she was looking for something casual and he gave every indication that he was going to deliver. Before they even hooked up he told her he wanted “something casual” and she agreed because that was legit what she wanted. To her horror, Barbie woke up the day after their “casual” hookup to find him standing over her bed with a three course breakfast and a look that said, “I want to wear your skin, my beautiful, beautiful bride.” Barbie will spend the next three years ghosting this guy, always thinking that she’s done with him until one morning out of the blue she gets a random text that says “wat went wrong?” and she’ll know he’s back again. They’ll meet again 10 years in the future when he shows up out of nowhere to object at her wedding.
Shared Fuckboy Ken
Barbie and all of her friends have at least had some kind of romantic encounter with this Ken. It’s kind of a joke, actually. Every pregame Barbie’s friend group will gather together and see who got a DM from him this weekend. Barbie and co. usually go along with it because he’s actually pretty fun to hang out with and it’s not that serious. Eventually Midge will catch feelings and ruin the whole thing for everyone. Fucking Midge.
Sexy Barista Fuckboy Ken
This Ken just started working at Barbie’s fave coffee shop and she is living for it. Barbie has told all of her friends about him and has memorized his work schedule so that she can stop by and stare at him. After months of reading wayyyy too much into his latte art, Barbie will spot him at a club but will be too fucked up at that point to talk to him. The next day she’ll show up for his usual shift at the coffee shop only to find out that he moved to Portland. She’ll spend the rest of her life being 99% sure that he was The One.
King Fuckboy Ken
After you defeat all the fuckboys, you must face the final King Fuckboy Ken. Barbie literally can’t even remember how she met this fuckboy. It was like one day she woke up and suddenly there he was, in her bed, dropping hints that she should go on the pill. Barbie allows this behavior to continue because he smells good and is p. decent in bed, but she never gets attached. One day he’ll just straight-up disappear and she’ll be totally fine with that. She’ll think of him fondly every time she goes to her annual gynecologist appointment and miraculously is declared clean of all STDs.