Monday, November 18, 2013

the first Barbie styling heads

I now have the original Barbie styling head, and three versions of the second one (sort of).

The first Barbie head was sold in 1973, the Growin' Pretty Hair Barbie Beauty Center (box dated 1972), #4027.  It was an international effort making her, as the countries listed on the box are Japan, Hong Kong, Mexico and the United States!   The head has very light blonde hair and has a ponytail to be styled.  The box's sample faces have two very different "attitudes," one of a big-eyed innocent young teen girl with long hair; the other of a cool, distant, sophisticated young California woman.  The base is an apricot color.

It's the 1975 head that everyone remembers. It's the Quick Curl Barbie Beauty Center, same stock number, dated 1974 for the 1975 market. The head was made in Mexico and the accessories in the US.  Like the Quick Curl dolls, the hair has gold wires running through it.  Like the Quick Curl dolls, it's almost impossible to restore the tangled frizzed hair to its original condition.  The base is pink.  Both heads have the same accessories, including false eyelashes.

I have two smaller, recent versions of the Quick Curl head, each with a different purpose.  In 2008, Mattel sold a smaller head with real hair for its American Girl Julie Albright, who lives in the 1970s.  Its official name is "Julie's Christmas Gift," stock number 0851-3107, made in China, box date 2007.  I own both Julie and a previous AG girl, Kirsten, and many of their outfits and accessories, but the Quick Curl head is stored with my Barbie stuff, not my AG stuff.  The head itself is about 1/2 inch longer than  an actual Barbie head.  The curlers and brush are real.

The second one is a Hallmark ornament sold in 2012.  It's simply called "Quick Curl Barbie Beauty Center," and it is all molded, like Ken's hair is molded, and the curlers are permanently attached to the base.  The head is about 1/4 inch smaller than the actual doll's.  It was made in China, of course, with a stock number of 02711.

I have two photos to show you, one of the heads themselves, the other of the boxes.  My Quick Curl Barbie is wearing #8681 Chic and Neat and #8682 New Fashion Coat, all from 1973.  She looks like a preppy character from Love Story or Our Time.

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