Healthy Roots is a company that’s been recently making waves in the toy industry—and for good reason!
Founded by Yelitsa Jean-Charles in 2015, Healthy Roots has worked hard to deliver toys and storybooks that foster self-love and healthy self-image in young girls of color. Each doll manufactured by Healthy Roots is lovingly created to depict the diverse skin tones, hair types, and personalities that are present in black and brown communities. And for little girls, this representation is incredibly important.
It’s often been difficult to find dolls that girls of color can identify with, and for the longest time, there has been a lack of diversity in the toy industry as a whole. Jean-Charles’ own experiences being frustrated by the lack of options available—and the depiction of brown and black dolls as being “not the pretty one”—inspired her to take things in her own hands.
Healthy Roots Dolls aims to “empower, educate and inspire self-love.” Its first manufactured doll—Zoë—illustrates this vision beautifully. According to her backstory, Zoë is a young African American girl who made the “big chop” after a trip to the salon with her mother put her in the path of a young black woman with a beautiful halo of kinks.
Zoë’s admiration for this woman led to her changing her own perception of her hair, and how she loves and cares for it.
Visually, Zoë is an unarguably beautiful doll. She stands at 18 inches with a warm brown complexion, rosy cheeks, large doe eyes, and—of course—a shoulder length cascade of beautiful curls.
Her hair texture mimics many styles that young black and brown girls have. And with her sweet backstory and likable personality, her influence is sure to do a wealth of good to many girls’ self-esteem and sense of empowerment.
Healthy Roots doesn’t plan to stop there: with its collection, Jean-Charles hopes to show the world that diverse toys can be enjoyed by everyone, for the greater good of everyone.
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The Healthy Roots Dolls team would like to share our love and happiness. Healthy Roots Dolls was founded 2 years ago by Yelitsa Jean-Charles, a college student with a big idea. With over 600 kickstarter backers, the help of mentors/advisors, an accelerator and an amazing team, we are proud to present our first doll Zoe! Healthy Roots Dolls mission is ensure that no one feels less than because of the kink of their curl or the color of their skin. We believe that all hair is beautiful hair! Zoe is an 18 inch doll with big curly hair. Her natural hair journey started when her mother helped her big chop. Together they learned the ins and outs of natural hair care from the best products to use to how to style it. She has gone from teeny weenie afro to big hair, don't care. Zoe wants to help other girls learn to love their girls. You can order your Zoe doll today! Link in bio. #blackdollsmatter #naturalhair #blackgirlmagic #melanin #teamnatural #representationmatters
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“The Same way that we can play with white Barbie dolls, people should have diverse dolls in general…Our goal is to represent the voices of young girls of color in the toy industry with products that show how beautiful they truly are.”
It’s not hard to see why Healthy Roots has won over hearts in such a short amount of time!
For those who wish to support Healthy Roots Dolls, visit www.healthyrootsdolls.com to place an order for the Zoë doll!
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