Last Updated on December 26, 2019 by Danielle
UN equality line seeks to shatter gender stereotypes with new boy dolls.
The UN’s gender equality line, HeForShe Initiative, has joined forces with Boy Story to launch Boy Story dolls targeted toward boys. The boy dolls will be known as action dolls. The action dolls are named Billy and Mason.
These action dolls will boldly challenge traditional gender stereotypes at the root – early childhood. Traditional gender stereotypes prevent young boys from experiencing dolls because they are deemed by society to be girl toys. However, it is important to note that dolls help to develop young boys’ emotional intelligence and soft skills like empathy. These are important skills that our young boys are being deprived of but now parents have an opportunity to embrace these new action dolls.
Why are these boy dolls called ‘action dolls’? ‘Action’ is derived from boys’ action figures. Boys love playing with action figures and engaging in fun, creative role-play. And, at the core, they are dolls. Dolls teach empathy, build nurturing and develop emotional intelligence in girls. So now boys will be able to experience the best of both worlds in these new action dolls. Undoubtedly, it will be an uphill battle – but not an impossible one – but the company is trying to break the mentality that dolls are only for girls.
According to Kristen Johnson, Boy Story’s co-founder, kids learn different skills via different types of play. Between ages 3-4, kids learn human interaction and basic emotion. At 5-6, kids learn empathy and character imagination. And by age 7 and older, kids learn companionship and emotional intelligence.
These Boy Story dolls are available online at the company’s website, www.boystory.com. According to the company, a portion of the funds will go toward their work on women and girls’ employment around the world. Additionally, the proceeds will be used on efforts to improve gender equality. Various businesses, institutions, and celebrities like Emma Watson and Anne Hathaway support the HeForShe Initiative.
HeForShe and Boy Story realized their missions were aligned, making this an ideal collaboration opportunity.
HeForShe is dedicated to making real strides toward equality by involving men in gender equality. Boy Story wants to break down stereotypes that say boys can’t play with dolls since they are supposedly only for girls. All they want is for kids to have the freedom to be themselves and for them to have the chance to learn important skills by playing with dolls. If dolls can teach boys important life skills does it make sense to limit their play based on outdated biases.
Interestingly, HeForShe is not the first company to introduce this new boy doll or action doll trend that is taking the toy world by storm. Earlier this year at Toy Fair, we saw the launch of American Girl’s boy doll, Logan Everett. This was the first time in the company’s 30-plus year history that it has launched a boy doll in the American Girl doll line. And we also saw the awesome Wonder Crew action dolls and the HeForShe Special Edition Mason and Billy dolls. It will be interesting to see how consumers respond to these new boy dolls.
BoyStory is showing no signs of slowing down. According to Johnson, the company plans for accessories expansion and the launch of another two dolls.