Last February, actress Zendaya’s Oscars faux-loc hairstyle made headlines when “Fashion Police” host Guiliana Rancic said she must smell like weed and patchouli. The then 18-year-old pointedly responded to the “ignorant slurs and pure disrespect,” saying that she she chose the locs “to remind people of color that our hair is good enough.”
Now, Mattel will commemorate the star’s look—and her message—with a Barbie in her image.
So excited to honor @Zendaya with a one-of-a-kind doll as she encourages girls to Raise Their Voices and to #BeSuper! pic.twitter.com/GEtTR9bayC
— Barbie (@Barbie) September 18, 2015
Zendaya talked about her evolving relationship with the Barbie brand in an interview with Yahoo:
When I was little, I didn’t have one that looked like me, so I couldn’t connect with her in that way. But getting to visit the Mattel offices and see Barbie’s vision for the future…I was able to see how they plan to diversify, broadening the horizons and the image of Barbie, and make it more, you know, open. I left the office feeling it was definitely something I wanted to be a part of.
And now, she will. But it won’t be available for sale – the one-of-a-kind doll will be revealed at this weekend’s Barbie Rock ’N Royals Concert Experience, a benefit Zendaya is hosting for VH1’s Save The Music.
This isn’t the first time Mattel has crafted a unique doll to commemorate a black star. In April, the company created a Barbie for “Selma” director Ava DuVernay.