The Ken Doll Is Going The Way Of The Barbie: Realistic

Published March 11, 2016
Updated February 5, 2018
Published March 11, 2016
Updated February 5, 2018

On the heels of the Barbie redesign, a new Ken doll alternative is tackling male body image head on with a realistically proportioned doll.

New Ken Doll

A standard Ken doll (left) compared with Boy Lammily, a new Ken doll alternative. Image Source: Lammily

Praise for the “dad bod” swept the Internet last year (and, according to one writer, is actually the body type that women prefer), and now it seems to have hit the toy market — specifically, Barbie’s beau, Ken.

Dubbed Boy Lammily, the comparatively less-chiseled doll has the proportions of what artist Nickolay Lamm says is average for a 19-year-old: “typical but not muscular.” Prototypes and images are ready to make Boy Lammily a reality. The artist is just waiting on his crowdfunding campaign to reach its $70,000 goal before going into production.

Lamm got started in the doll business back in 2013, when he debuted a picture of a Mattel Barbie next to a doll he made using the average body proportions of a 19-year-old female.

He caught enough attention to launch a crowdfunding campaign and make more than 20,000 “Lammily” dolls, as well as Lammily Marks, which make it so “your dolls can have freckles, acne, cellulite, the occasional booboo, and more!”

It seems it was only a matter of time before Lamm set his sights on male dolls. After all, men also have body image issues — which, as with Barbie, may be exacerbated by the physical standards Ken is promoting.

A study commissioned by Central YMCA and the Succeed Foundation found that 80 percent of men talk in ways that promote anxiety about their appearance, and 38 percent of men would give up at least one year of their life for the perfect body. Both percentages were higher than the percentages for women who were asked similar questions.

“The existence of toys which provide positive, relatable body image is inarguably paramount to girls and women, but let us not forget that societal pressures concerning body image apply to boys and men as well,” Lamm wrote in his Boy Lammily crowdfunding campaign. “It’s time to take the next logical step and create the world’s first realistically proportioned doll for boys!”

Now that you’ve got the story on what may be the new Ken doll, check out two people who underwent countless surgeries and spent thousands of dollars to look like real-life Barbie and Ken dolls.

Nickolaus Hines
Nickolaus Hines is a freelance writer in New York City. He graduated from Auburn University, and his recent bylines can be found at Men's Journal, Inverse, and Grape Collective.