In 2016, Ibtihaj Mohammad made history when she became the first hijab-woman among the American Fencer team at the Olympics. This time, the most epic in the history of inclusivity and representation, she now has a Barbie after her! This would be the first hijab-wearing barbie produced by the American toy company, Mattel. This is a special edition Barbie called Mattel Shero to honour women “female heroes who inspire other girls by breaking boundaries and expanding possibilities for women everywhere”. She expresses her excitement on her Instagram page about “being the newest member of the Mattel Shero family”.
Thank you @Mattel for announcing me as the newest member of the @Barbie Shero family! The Barbie Shero Program recognizes women who break boundaries to inspire the next generation of girls and I am so excited to join this incredible group of women. I’m proud to know that little girls everywhere can now play with a Barbie who chooses to wear hijab! This is a childhood dream come true ??#shero
While receiving her the Barbie, Glamour writes about what she feels while accepting it;
“Muhammad turned serious, remembering her childhood experiences playing with Barbie—and how she wished for one that looked like her. “I played with Barbie for a long time, what some people may call an uncomfortably long time,” she joked.
But in those early days, Muhammad didn’t have Barbies that wore a headscarf, so she would sew on her own hijabs with her sisters. Now that Mattel has made a doll for girls like her, Muhammad knows it will make a difference:
“I hope that little girls of color across the heartland will be inspired to embrace what makes them unique,” she said of girls who will play with this Barbie”.