Make money collecting Barbie dolls

Make money collecting Barbie dolls

08 March 2023
Reading Time: 5 mins

What a doll!

In honour of International Barbie Day on March 9 we are here to round up how to make money collecting Barbie dolls. At 60 years old and untouched by Botox, Barbie’s pulling power remains defiantly undiminished. She is one of the biggest selling toys in history, with over a billion dolls sold across six decades. A Barbie was bought every three seconds in 2014, and her popularity hasn’t waned since.

The bombshell first burst, fully formed, onto the toy scene in 1959 and now, standing at just under 12 inches tall, she heads a business worth over two billion dollars a year. Individual dolls can be worth thousands of pounds – some even into the hundreds of thousands.

This is all well and good, but how can you take advantage of the lucrative market in Barbies? We’ll think about that in this article.

What to look for when collecting barbies

Make money collecting Barbie dolls

Like so many other collectibles, Barbie’s attraction holds true for both children and adults – particularly adults who were not allowed or could not afford a Barbie of their own as children, or who now want to collect Barbies as nostalgia items.

The potential for any Barbie fan to create a unique and personal collection is endless. The question is, where to start?

Firstly, make sure you realise the three “eras” of Barbie dolls: The Vintage Era (1959 – 72), The Modern Era (after 72), and The Collectible Era, which was started by Mattel in 1986.

Of course, there’s far more to look out for than that – here’s what you should be aware of if you’re looking to make money from the Barbie universe.

Look for dolls that are different

A variation in eye colour or hair style can make them more valuable.

Try to keep your dolls and outfits boxed

In other words, do not play (or let your children play) with them!

Although unboxed dolls are still saleable (one was auctioned in London saleroom for £2,500), boxed examples always fetch more. For this reason many serious collectors buy two of each doll, one to leave in the box and one to play with.

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