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How We Decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

  • 18 Models Considered
  • 68 Hours Spent
  • 1 Experts Interviewed
  • 275 Consumers Consulted
  • Zero products received from manufacturers.

    We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

    Shopping Guide for Best Barbie Dolls

    Globally recognized as the most prominent fashion icon of the toy industry, Barbie has undergone countless makeovers since her “birth” in 1959. Barbie dolls have endured as a firm favorite among little girls from all walks of life, and it isn't hard to see why. Whether filling the shoes of a career woman, farmer, fairy, mermaid, or fashionista, Barbie dolls manage to fuel imagination, unleash creativity, and ignite inspiration – all through free play.

    Choosing a Barbie doll for a special child can be oodles of fun, but with hundreds of models out there, it's easy to feel overwhelmed. If you're in search of the perfect Barbie doll and could use a little help, we’ve got you covered.

    At BestReviews, we take the guesswork out of choosing the best products by providing consumers with reviews that are honest and informative. To ensure our reviews are 100% accurate and unbiased, we never accept free manufacturer samples. Instead, we buy products off store shelves just like you do. All our recommendations are based on extensive research, expert advice, product analysis, and consumer feedback, so you can have complete confidence that every review stems from an objective standpoint.

    Short on time and eager to shop? Check out our five favorite Barbie dolls featured in the product matrix above. Or continue reading to learn more about all things Barbie.

    To date, Barbie has pursued over 150 incredibly diverse career paths, from following her dream of becoming a rock star to running for president.

    Suitability: Finding the Perfect Barbie

    Selecting a Barbie doll that matches your child’s unique personality and individual interests is a must.

    While this may seem like a glaringly obvious point, we know that it can be incredibly tempting to choose a model with qualities that we admire in the hopes of fostering similar values and goals in our beloved little ones.

    Unfortunately, however noble your intentions may be, a little girl who’s enthralled by the magical world of fairies, mermaids, and princesses is less likely to be impressed by a doll that doesn’t exude some or all of these characteristics.


    When choosing a Barbie doll, it's helpful to look for one that matches your child’s personality.

    Staff  | BestReviews

    Enhancing Enjoyment Through Versatility

    Versatility is an especially important consideration if you're purchasing a Barbie doll for a child you don't know very well or haven't seen in awhile.

    Although all Barbie dolls offer versatility in terms of customizable clothing and accessories, certain models have an edge over others straight out of the box. Dolls that transform by adding, removing, or adjusting included clothing and accessories give children the opportunity to choose the version they like best.

    If one of these isn't an option, look for a basic Barbie doll with neutral hair, makeup, and a pretty dress, then purchase a few outfits and accessories separately.

    The more accessories a Barbie doll comes with, the more fun it's likely to offer. Whatever the occasion and whomever the child, we prescribe this mantra; accessorize, accessorize, accessorize!


    Barbie Doll Features

    Collectibles and designer dolls aside, the average children's Barbie doll stands 11.5 inches tall. The head moves from side to side, the arms move at the shoulders, and the legs are individually joined at the hips, allowing Barbie to “walk” and sit. Certain models have fully articulated limbs that feature moving elbows, wrists, knees, and sometimes even ankles.

    With so many unique Barbie dolls models on offer, it may be impossible to create a comprehensive list of Barbie doll features, but one thing’s for certain: there's a Barbie doll for everyone.

    If you’ve dreamed it, chances are there's a Barbie out there living it!


    A Barbie doll’s hair can easily become dry. A simple wash or leave-in conditioner can help keep hair healthy and shiny.

    Staff  | BestReviews

    Barbie Doll Prices

    A good Barbie doll certainly doesn't need to break the bank.

    A basic Barbie doll can cost as little as $10, while Barbie doll sets, complete with extras and accessories, generally range between $15 and $30.

    Not surprisingly, collectible Barbie dolls cost a bit more, with prices starting at around $40 and reaching upwards of $100 for rarer items.

    Despite many setbacks, Barbie dolls are so popular that a whopping three dolls are sold every second!

    Barbie Doll FAQ

    Q. Can I wash a Barbie doll’s hair?

    A. Yes. There's no need to replace or discard a Barbie doll simply because her hair is a little lackluster. Start by combing it out. Next, add a dab of conditioner. After a couple of minutes, rinse the conditioner under lukewarm running water. Next, work a mild shampoo into the hair and rinse. Condition once more before rinsing, and gently remove excess water with a towel. Lastly, spray on a leave-in conditioner, comb, and allow the hair to air dry. Your Barbie’s hair is as good as new!

    Q. Can Barbie dolls be submerged in water?

    A. While Babies specifically designed for water play can come along for bath time, we recommend keeping the average Barbie doll out of water to prevent mold growth where you won't be able to see or reach it.

    Q. Are there any interactive Barbie dolls on the market?

    A. Although a WiFi-enabled interactive Barbie was released in 2015, we highly recommend thoroughly researching this option before purchasing, as there are some claims that it may pose a security risk.

    The team that worked on this review
    • Devangana
      Web Producer
    • Eliza
      Production Manager
    • Erica
    • Heather
      Chief Content Officer
    • Melissa
      Senior Editor

    Support Us

    At BestReviews, we purchase every product we review with our own funds. We never accept anything from product manufacturers. Our goal is to be 100% objective in our analysis, and we do not want to run the risk of being swayed by products provided at no cost.

    Help support our research and testing by making a contribution.