Muhammad killed it at the 2016 Rio Summer Olympics, where she earned her bronze medal as part of Team Sabre for Team USA. "I wore it to the Olympic games, so I wanted my Barbie to have the flawless winged liner and also to wear a hijab", Muhammed told PeopleStyle.
The first USA woman to compete at the Olympics in a hijab, Muhammad won bronze at last year's games in Rio.
"Ibtihaj is an inspiration to countless girls who never saw themselves represented, and by honoring her story, we hope this doll reminds them that they can be and do anything", Sejal Shah Miller, Barbie's vice president of global marketing, said in a statement. "I love that my relationship with Barbie has come full circle". Previous "Shero" Barbies, which launched in 2015, have been inspired by Olympic gymnast Gabby Douglas, model Ashley Graham, ballerina Misty Copeland, director Ava DuVernay and actress Zendaya, according to CNN.
Shares of Mattel, the maker of Barbie dolls, increased 20.7 percent Monday after a report that rival Hasbro made an offer to buy the company.. She had the doll's thighs made to be more muscular to reflect a fencer's need for strong legs to "propel ourselves into lunges", and she added her signature winged eyeliner. So I wanted to have athletic toned legs for sure.
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Inspiring, right? Mattel, the toymaker behind Barbie dolls, thought so too. "I wore it to the Olympic games, so I wanted my Barbie to have the flawless winged liner and also to wear a hijab". "I like to think of my eyeliner as a shield of power; I not only wear it to the grocery store but I also wear it to compete", she continued to the magazine. "I think its revolutionary for Barbie to take a stand in this moment that we're in - and I would say, as a country, to have a doll wear a hijab and be the first of its kind", she says.
Muhammad tweeted on Monday thanking Mattel for welcoming her into the "Shero" family, which celebrates women role models.
Mattel unveiled a Barbie created in Muhammad's likeness, becoming the first Barbie to ever don a Hajib. "Then I got involved in sports, and I came to appreciate my body".
Keen observers might notice that the hijab isn't the only thing setting hers apart from a regular Barbie doll. "It's cool to have Muslim girls in the conversation, to have African Americans as fencers is also really cool".