Sunday, 19 January 2014

Encyclopaedia of Alternative Fashion † Human Dolls

The full Encyclopaedia of Alternative Fashion can be found here.

I expect some people might resent my inclusion of human dolls in the Encyclopaedia. I say it takes all sorts to make the world. Human dolls are a subculture, but not all subcultures are so extreme.

This is a difficult subculture to write about as most of the readily available information on the internet is very hyped up and sensationalist.


Also known as
Living dolls

Country of Origin
Probably the first widely publicised living doll came from Ukraine, but human dolls can be found worldwide (eg. China, Japan, America, Korea, UK...)

Gender balance
Mostly women


Human dolls are a 'fashion subculture' that really takes the idea of 'it's not just about fashion, it's a lifestyle' to a new level. The dolls are people who seek in every way possible to resemble dolls. This is distinct from Lolita, where the aim to look cute and doll-like, but not necessarily like a doll in every way. However, some human dolls do have an interest in Lolita fashion.

Human dolls often seek plastic surgery to resemble dolls more closely. In addition, thick makeup to produce a doll-like appearance, especially huge eyes, is generally applied. Human dolls have an ideal doll form, whether it be from the Barbie franchise or a traditional doll, and seek to replicate it as closely as possible.

Style icons
There are several very famous human dolls who are currently active. Anastasiya Shpagina is a Ukrainian lady who models herself on anime girls. She has had plastic surgery on her face and body, and applies heavy make-up to make her eyes large and anime-like.

Valeria Lukyanova, the original human doll (also known as the living Barbie doll), models herself (you guessed it) on a Barbie-like figure. She has an exceptionally small waist and large breasts, believed to be the work of plastic surgery, which Valeria has denied. In addition to purported plastic surgery, her make-up style slims her features and widens her eyes.


Justin Jedlica (also known as the real-life Ken) is an American guy who has had around 90 operations to produce a Ken-doll-like appearance. Unlike the female human dolls, he does not use makeup, crediting his whole appearance to surgery and implants.


There are many more who are generally quite famous, but I'll stop there or I'll be going all day...

Inspirations in popular culture
The two prime inspirations for human dolls come from anime and the Barbie franchise, but the general aim is to look doll-like and flawless. In essence, any 'perfect' looking character is a potential inspiration.


Further reading and resources


  1. There are another kind of 'human dolls' but they can also go under the name of masking. It's were people wear doll like but very realistic masks, that you can barely notice until you notice their mouth isn't moving when they speak. Lots of people do it to look like specific genders.

    1. Seriously? D: I have to look into that.


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