How to care Barbie's head
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Index:

Bild-Lilli, Barbie's predecessor

Barbie's Introduction

Barbie's early history

Barbie's biography

Barbie the doll

Barbie's Manufacturers Markings

Barbie's controversies

Barbie's friends and relatives

Ethnic Barbie's

Barbie's fashion

Barbie through the ages, 1959 - 2009

Barbie luxury doll to massproduction

Barbie as collectors object

Silkstone Barbie doll

How to care Barbie's body?

How to care Barbie's clothes?

Barbie versus Bratz

Dolls of the My Scene-line

The five different collector types

Glossary of Abbreviations

Miscellaneous

Caring General:
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Dolls and wardrobes are generally easy to clean with soft soapwater
(be careful with the face, some of the paints are water soluble). Watch
out for color buttons these may dissolve shen the clothes are washed.
Never wash fur, brocade and velvet.
Always remove metal earrings, as the metal will oxydate when in
contact with vinyl. Always remove the hairbow from Skipper’s head.
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How to care Barbie's head?
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Cleaning the Face:
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Start with Palmolive clear dishwashing liquid in a cup of warm water.
If the face needs more cleaning, use a Q-tip soaked in 1 part Twin
Pines Formula 911 to 2 parts water. Never do this more than once.
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Cleaning the Hair:
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Use Mane and Tail Shampoo and Conditioner, or equivalent. Use a
metal flea comb to comb out the hair while the conditioner is still in
it, then I rinse thoroughly. Never use a Barbie brush or comb, as
they will only further tangle the hair. My primary concern when
restyling has always been the length to cut the newly rerooted hair.
The measurements below give me some extra error room. I never cut
the hair when it is wet, as it will end up too short. Final trimming is
done after styling. I always have a Mod Barbie with correctly styled
hair nearby, to see exactly what I'm attempting to do.
















 

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TNT Flip Barbie .... 3 1/2" from part to side.
3" at nape of neck.
1/2" forehead spit curl.
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TNT Straight Hair Barbie 4 1/2" to 5" from nape.
Sides for mini ponytail 1/4" shorter.
1 1/4" bangs - Do Not cut too short!
Bangs will be swept to the side.
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Side Ponytail Talker 5" to allow for left side going over top of head
into the right side ponytail.
Side spit curls to bottom of jaw.
Bangs even with eyebrow end.
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Living Barbie 3 1/4" from bangs to side.
Bangs even with eyebrow end.
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Hair Fair
(I need a model to do this)
2" from part on right side.
1 1/2" from part on left side.
1/2" at nape of neck.
1" at back of head midway down.
Bangs bottom of eye angled to 1/4".
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Nape Bun Talker 3 1/2" from part to side.
3" at nape of neck.
Side spit curls 1/8" above jaw.
1/2" forehead spit curl.
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Live Action Barbie & PJ 3 1/2" from part to sides.
2" at nape of neck.
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TNT Stacey 5" from part to side.
4 1/4" at nape of neck.
Side spit curls 1/4" above jaw.
1/2" forehead spit curl.
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TNT & Talking PJ 3 3/4" from bangs to side.
Bangs even with end of eyebrows.
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TNT Christie 1 1/4" at top of head.
1/2" at nape of neck.
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Talking Stacey No spit curls, bangs at eyebrow.
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Malibu Barbie, PJ & Christie 4" from part at top of head.
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First, Barbie's head needs to be reattached to her body for easy handling. Then, after a very careful haircut, comes the styling. If you've had the nerve to cut that beautiful hair you've so meticulously rerooted, this part should be a breeze. The finished product is getting closer, and will be well worth it. Gather around the kitchen sink, and let's go! Preparation for Styling Barbie's Hair After rerooting, measuring, and cutting, it's time to relax the hair so it will properly lay down on Barbie's head. I comb through her hair to remove any small tangles, and make sure the part is in the properly thatched position. Then, Barbie goes into the sink upright in a Kaiser stand. I pour just boiled water over Barbie's hair in the direction I want the hair to lay (in this case, toward her toes). After the boiled water, I pour ice water in the same direction. I read in Barbie Bazaar September 19961 that the style will hold better, curled or straight, with the hot and cold treatment.  I've never questioned how or why this process works, I just do it.
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Straightening Hair for TNT's:
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To begin the TNT hairstyle, the "sides" have to be pulled up into a mini ponytail. These are the plugs at the side of the face and back to the ear that are so close together, and were a pain in the neck to reroot. This covers the bald spot behind the bangs that I was so tempted to fill in with extra plugs. (I didn't.)  I make sure to leave some strands forward of the ponytail on the left side of the part, as they will be an important section of the bangs. The little ponytail is secured at the top of the head with a 3/16" orthodontic rubber band. I use styling gel to curve the top bangs to the side, perpendicular to the part, and over the right side of the pulled-up ponytail. This will cover the rest of the area with no plugs. I gel the front bangs down against the forehead. The strands on the left side of the part are curved slightly toward the ear. The bangs over the left eye will be too long but they can be trimmed later, after the hair is fluffed. Trimming them now, while they're flattened with gel, will make them too short. I speak from experience here. I wrap the head with plastic wrap to hold the bangs and ponytail in place. I place Barbie back in the sink in her stand, and pour more just boiled water down over her, followed by another dose of ice water. I blot the hair with paper towels, then place her, in the stand, over more paper towels to dry upright. After at least 24 hours, I unwrap the head. With all the water raining down on Barbie's head, the gel is usually pretty much gone. I comb out the bangs to fluff and shape them a little, then trim as needed. My Barbie is now ready for a tiny bow to match her outfit.
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Styling for the 1969-70 Barbie Flip TNT:
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According to what I've read in Barbie Bazaar  November 19961, all this takes is a couple of tiny curlers and some bobby pins. Just roll the hair up, towards the top of the head, secure it, and plunge the head in boiling water. I used original Barbie curlers and bobby pins from her Color 'n Curl set, but I have yet to make that work to my satisfaction. What I ended up with was straight hair with horizontal banana curls. That, to me, is not the flip hairstyle on a TNT Barbie. After much fussing around with curlers, pins, boiling water, etc., I decided to try a curling iron. On the low setting, I find it to be safe for the TNT hair. Too bad Clairol never made a miniature hot roller set (remember the Kindness 20 set?). When I used to set my own flip, I rolled the hot curlers down, not up. So I curled Barbie's entire head of hair down, little curls all over her head. Then I flipped the hair up as I combed, and it worked. I put a rubber band around Barbie's neck, over the flip to keep it in place. I don't use hairspray on my Mod girls, but many restylers do. It's a personal choice. Now, I'm not the best at doing this hairstyle, but I'm somewhat satisfied with the results. Feel free to email if you've had success with another method. What I find the most difficult to set is the little spit curl on the forehead. Bobby pins, even Barbie's little ones, just weighted the hair down and then fell out. I finally gooped the strands with clear mascara, plastered a little curl against the forehead, and taped it with paper surgical tape. The porous tape allowed the mascara to dry. Twenty-four hours later I removed the tape and, surprisingly, the curl stayed.
I wonder what's in that clear mascara, anyway... All that's left now is to stand back and admire. Congratulations on your good work!
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Rerooting:
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Book, magazine, and online research has given me several methods for rerooting Mod Era Barbie dolls. I'm sure there are others, but on these two pages are the methods I've tried. My third rerooting page has a neat flash presentation of the Matsumoto reroot method.
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Two Needle Anchor Thread Method:
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This is the way I prefer to reroot. No constant threading of a needle, no crunchy knots in the head. It takes longer, though. I think using dental floss in the place of thread is a good idea, as it seems to be stronger.
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3 ft. strand of dental floss (anchor floss)
2 ft. strand of dental floss (beading floss)
7" beading needle 
3" or 5" doll needle (anchor needle)
Hair cut to double length (approx. 12" to 14")

The idea here is to use one threaded needle to draw the thread (or, in this case, dental floss) from the second needle up through the scalp hole to create an eyelet. I think it's easier to do than it is to explain. I use a 7" beading needle to poke eye first through the hole, because it won't stretch the hole or tear it. The eye is very small, but I only have to thread it once. I thread the shorter doll needle with the 3 ft. strand of floss, and tie a couple of knots at the end. I thread the long beading needle with the second piece of floss, no knots at the end. I start with an anchor stitch by going in the neck hole with the shorter doll needle, and coming up in the center of head, making the small anchor stitch, and going back through the head and out the neck. This is now my anchor floss. Now, I poke my long beading needle eye first down into the first hole. Since it's 7" long, I can push it far enough out of the neck to run the doll needle through the loop, and then just pull the beading needle back up through the hole. Drawing the anchor floss up through the hole creates an eyelet. I remove the beading floss, and insert 15-20 strands of hair halfway through the eyelet. Then, I pull the anchor floss from the neck until the hair is securely in the hole. Repeat with the next hole. When about half of the head is rooted, I make another anchor stitch. I tie the end off by knotting it several times, and cutting the floss up inside the neck hole. Then I start with a new 3 ft. strand of anchor floss. I do this to avoid fraying the floss. As above, to finish, I bring the floss up through a created hole, make another anchor stitch, and take the floss back down into the head. I tie the floss off and cut it inside the neck hole.
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Rooting a Part:
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Using the anchor thread method, I alternate sides when plugging the part. Starting at the forehead (or back of the neck for PJ's pigtails) I insert the first plug, then split it in half when inserting the second plug from the opposite side of the part. I split the second plug in half with the third plug, and so on to the end of the part. This creates a thatched pattern, and completely covers the scalp.
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The Flip's Spit Curl:
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The spit curl is created from only one plug, so the number of strands is important for it to look correct. A common mistake is to make this plug too dense. I use only 8-10 strands, depending upon the thickness of the hair used. Remember, this curl lays flat against the forehead. A thinner plug will be easier to train, and will look more like the original.
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Rerooting Eyelashes:
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I use the same type of hair for eyelashes as I use for the head. I've seen eyelashes done with black thread and, believe me, it looks far from natural!
Remember, the eyelashes need not be black. I go with my feelings when it comes to the color. For instance, if I'm doing a blond or redhead, I will use a dark brown shade. For the more flamboyant hair colors, it depends on how dramatic I want the eyes to look. I always use a dark shade, though, so the eyelashes will draw attention to the eyes. Use a little imagination here. Once I've chosen the color, I thread a needle with about 6 strands of hair. I usually start at the outside corner, pulling the needle down into the scalp and through the head, and coming out the neck opening.
I remove the strands from the needle and draw them back up into the head, leaving about a 1/2" inside.  I complete one eye to my satisfaction, then do the other. I don't knot eyelash plugs for two reasons. If I cut them too short, there's a little extra to pull through. Also, this is a very small work area with narrowly spaced holes. Knots will tend to get in the way of the needle. Another thought: If you look inside a head with original lashes, you'll notice that Mattel didn't knot Mod Barbie's lashes.
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Face Nicks & Pin Pricks:
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Acrylic Nail Kit (Nailene® has pink, peach, and white powder in one set.) 10/0 Liner sable paint brush. I take a very small amount of nail material (blended to closely match vinyl color) on the tip of a brush, apply it to the tip of the nose, shape it with a toothpick., and let it dry. I further shape the repair with a metal needle file, then smooth it with #1000 sandpaper if necessary.  I've read that missing fingers can be rebuilt the same way.

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