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Get familiar with all the Barbie Doll Friends’ names. Read our comprehensive guide for more information on who they are, what they look like, and how to play with them.

The Complete List of Barbie Doll Friends’ Names

Do you remember the good old days when Barbie dolls ruled the toy market and, more importantly, your heart? For many people of any age years now, Barbie dolls remain one of their most cherished toys from childhood. 

You no doubt still remember all Barbie doll friends’ names plus perhaps all kinds of stories around them as if it was just yesterday. 

We want to take a trip down memory lane and find out how much you know about these icons from our past – can you name all the original members of Barbie’s inner circle? Let’s dive in by taking a look at who they were!

An Introduction to Barbie And Her Friends An Introduction to Barbie And Her Friends

Barbie, the famous fashion doll created by Ruth Handler in 1959, has captured the hearts of millions around the world. With her iconic blonde hair and perfect figure, she quickly became a beloved toy for children and collectors alike. 

But Barbie is not alone in her world – she has an entire group of friends who accompany her on adventures and share in her glamorous lifestyle. These friends were introduced over the years, with new characters being added to the group to reflect changing times and trends.

Best Friends of Barbie

Ken Carson

Ken Carson

Barbie’s iconic boyfriend, Ken Carson, made his debut in 1961. According to Ken himself, they fell in love at first sight while filming their first commercial together. However, Ken often lived in Barbie’s shadow until he made headlines in the 1990s.

In the early 1990s, Mattel asked young girls if they thought Barbie needed a new love interest. They wanted Ken to stay but with a cooler look. Enter Earring Magic Ken in 1993, sporting an earring, black jeans, and a stylish purple vest. However, the silver ring around his neck caused controversy as it resembled a certain item popular among gay men.

Mattel claimed the design was based on what boys in girls’ lives wore, but it was seen as an appropriation of queer culture. Despite the controversy, Earring Magic Ken became the best-selling Ken doll at the time, largely due to its popularity among gay men. Unfortunately, Mattel discontinued the doll due to the controversy.

Barbie and Ken ended their relationship in 2004, only to reunite in 2011 after Ken made grand gestures to win her back. This love story captured the hearts of many, proving that true love conquers all.

In summary, Barbie and Ken’s journey has been filled with love, controversy, and reconciliation. They have become icons in the world of dolls, capturing the imaginations of children and adults alike.

Midge Hadley Sherwood (1963–1966, 1988–2004, 2013–2015)

Midge Hadley Sherwood (1963–1966, 1988–2004, 2013–2015)

Midge Hadley Sherwood is Barbie’s unforgettable Irish-American best friend. In 1963, Mattel introduced Midge as Barbie’s companion, and their friendship was an instant hit. They even shared clothes because they had the same proportions. Over the years, Midge’s presence in the Barbie line has been sporadic but always memorable.

Midge’s journey in Barbie’s world has had its ups and downs. Introduced alongside Ken’s best friend, Allan Sherwood, in 1964, Midge eventually married him in 1991. From then on, she became known as Midge Hadley Sherwood.

One of the most memorable moments in Midge’s story was her wedding day in 1991. She married Alan (formerly Allan) Sherwood, who had been her long-time partner since the 1960s. Barbie and Ken played important roles in the wedding party, adding to the joyous occasion.

Midge and Allan became the heart of the “Happy Family” line, complete with children and grandparents. One particular product caused controversy in 2002 – “Midge and Baby.” The doll depicted a pregnant Midge, with a removable belly containing a baby. While Mattel intended it to promote family role-play, some people criticized it for glamorizing teen pregnancy.

The misunderstanding arose because Midge was a married adult with a 3-year-old child. People failed to see the context and Walmart eventually pulled the controversial doll from their shelves, along with another “Happy Family” set.

Despite the controversy, Midge continued to make appearances, even undergoing a modern makeover in the Barbie: Life in the Dreamhouse web series in 2013. While her story arc in the series didn’t include a husband or children, she won the hearts of viewers, especially her crush, Ryan.

Since 2015, Midge hasn’t appeared in doll form or any of Barbie’s movies or shows. Her presence may be missed, but she remains an iconic character in Barbie’s history, capturing the imagination of generations of fans.

PJ (1969-1983)

Step back in time to the era of peace, love, and groovy vibes with PJ, Barbie’s best friend from the late 1960s to the early 1980s. As Midge took a break, PJ stepped in to represent the iconic hippie culture of the time.

With her long hair tied up in beaded pigtails, PJ first made her debut in 1969, using Midge’s face sculpt. But it wasn’t until 1972 that she joined the Malibu Barbie line, sporting a new Steffie face sculpt that stayed until her production ended.

PJ wasn’t just a fashion icon, she was also an Olympic gymnast in 1975, just like Barbie herself. With PJ by her side, Barbie had a new companion to share adventures and dreams.

However, there was a small mix-up along the way. One of the versions of the doll, “Dream Date PJ,” mistakenly lists her as Barbie’s cousin. This is the only reference of its kind and should not be considered official.

PJ’s journey came to an end in 1984, as Midge reclaimed her rightful place next to Barbie in the 1988 “California Dream” collection. But her memories of the groovy era will forever be cherished.

Christie (1968–2005, 2015)

Mattel made history in 1980 by releasing the first ever Black Barbie doll. Named Christie, she quickly became an iconic member of Barbie’s inner circle. Originally part of the Talking Dolls lineup in 1968, Christie later received a Twist ‘N Turn makeover. Although her original face sculpt was discontinued in 1978, she remained a beloved character in the Barbie product line for many years.

Christie stood out for her romantic entanglements with various male characters. She was linked with Brad in 1970, with the Talking Brad doll affectionately declaring, “Christie is the greatest.” In 1982, Christie found love again with Ken, who sported the Brad face sculpt and rooted hair. Later, she was paired with Steven in the late 80s. While the surname O’Neil is associated with her sister Nikki, it has not been directly linked to Christie.

Remaining a constant presence for decades, Christie was not just a friend but an integral member of Barbie’s circle. She even joined Barbie’s girl band, Beyond Pink, which released a chart-topping pop album in 1998. Featuring hits like “Think Pink,” “You Are the Universe,” and “The Girl of Today,” the album showcased Christie’s talent and popularity.

However, amidst praise, Christie faced criticism for adhering to American beauty standards and not representing diverse African cultural body images. Critics also pointed out that she only had one skin tone and her features symbolized white standards of beauty. Eventually, Christie was replaced by Nikki as Barbie’s new African-American friend, though the latter still bore Christie’s face sculpt.

Interestingly, Christie made a resurgence in the 2015 movie “Barbie and Her Sister in a Puppy Rescue” as one of Barbie’s old friends from Willows, Wisconsin. Her birthday, according to the 1998 Beyond Pink Christie box, is on August 9.

Nicole “Nikki” Watkins (2006–present)

Nikki, who first appeared in Mattel’s Teen Skipper line in 1997, has since been repositioned as one of Barbie’s closest companions. Some even speculate that she may be Christie’s younger sister. However, recent Barbie content suggests that Nikki and Christie have merged into a single character.

In the 2015 adventure film, “Barbie and Her Sisters in the Great Puppy Adventure,” a childhood friend named Christie was featured. This raises the question: are Christie and Nikki unrelated friends of Barbie, or has Skipper’s Nikki disappeared altogether? Mattel tends to reuse names, with a previous doll named Nikki in the 80s.

Nonetheless, Nikki continues to shine as Barbie’s beloved friend in the popular series “Barbie Dreamhouse Adventures.” Known as the “fashionista friend,” Nikki is always planning her next creative endeavor. Throughout the years, Nikki has sported various head sculpts, adding to her unique charm.

In the 2010 Random House book “Barbie: I Can be a Movie Star,” Nikki’s last name is O’Neil. However, her last name has since been established as Watkins in “Barbie: Dreamhouse Adventures.” 

From being a beloved character in the web series “Barbie: Life in the Dreamhouse” to her current leading role in “Barbie: Dreamhouse Adventures,” Nikki Watkins is undeniably one of Barbie’s best and closest friends.

Teresa Rivera (1988–present)

Originally featured in the collections “California Dream” and “Island Fun”, Teresa quickly became one of Barbie’s closest companions and continues to hold that title today.

Throughout the years, Teresa’s appearance has evolved. From the Island Fun Teresa doll to the Beach Blast Teresa doll, she initially used the 1983 Spanish Barbie face sculpt. However, starting with the Wet ‘N Wild Teresa doll, she adopted the 1972 Steffie face sculpt. Eventually, a new face sculpt was created specifically for Teresa, which is now recognized as the Teresa face sculpt.

But Teresa isn’t just a doll. She has been a part of various multimedia ventures, including the 1999 picture book “Barbie High Sea Adventure” and the 2008 musical movie “Barbie and the Diamond Castle”. In the Grolier book “High Sea Adventure”, her last name is revealed to be Rivera. Teresa’s Hispanic heritage is an important aspect of her character.

Teresa’s popularity continues in modern times, appearing in the web series “Barbie: Life in the Dreamhouse” and starring in the current series “Barbie: Dreamhouse Adventures”. She even took on the role of a spy in the 2016 movie “Barbie: Spy Squad”. In all her appearances, Teresa showcases her strong friendship with Barbie and her unique personality.

Not only is Teresa a great friend, but she also has a passion for STEM. In Barbie Dreamhouse Adventures, she is portrayed as a bilingual “technical taskmaster” who loves all things related to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

Kira/Miko (1985–2001)

Kira/Miko is Barbie doll’s first Asian friend character who made her debut in 1985 as Miko in the Tropical Barbie line. Marina in Europe, Kira’s name outside the US, also joined the doll family with a similar appearance and head sculpt. Kira/Oriental face sculpt was created in 1980 and remained a beloved character in the Barbie product line for many years.

Not only did Kira/Miko have a stylish skill set including rollerblading and playing in the WNBA and FIFA Women’s World Cup, but she also frequented various beaches. Additionally, Kira/Miko had the incredible opportunity to embark on a space mission alongside Barbie in the captivating 1998 book, Barbie Shooting for the Stars.

Summer Gordon (2004–2015)

The doll with a unique face sculpt. Summer, the younger sister of Blaine, captures attention with her strawberry blonde hair and captivating green/brown eyes. 

A beloved character in the popular web series Barbie: Life in the Dreamhouse, Summer’s origins trace back to Australia in 2004. However, in the animated world, she proudly represents America.

Raquelle (2006–2015)

From her original debut with Summer’s face sculpt to her transformation in the fashionable Barbie Fashionistas line, Raquelle has always been one to watch. As Barbie’s frenemy, she adds drama and excitement to iconic movies and the popular web series Barbie: Life in the Dreamhouse. And let’s not forget about her twin brother, Ryan. Join Raquelle on her fashion-forward adventures today!

Grace (2009–2015)

Grace, the African-American doll, joined the SIS Line in 2009 as Barbie’s friend. However, she decided to embark on a new adventure by moving to Chicago and forming new friendships. This captivating doll also made an appearance in Barbie: A Fashion Fairytale.

In 2014, Grace returned to her hometown of Malibu, bringing a fresh twist to her story. Her journey continued in Barbie: Life in the Dreamhouse, where her backstory was reinvented to captivate audiences.

Grace not only possesses beauty but brains too. With a strong interest in science, she showcases her intelligence through her charming and stylish persona. 

Other Barbie Doll Friends’ Names

Stacey (1968 to 1971)

She made her debut during the musical British Invasion of the US, adding a stylish twist to the Barbie lineup. With her long hair, which could be either blonde, brunette, or redhead, neatly tied in a side ponytail, Stacey turned heads everywhere she went. 

But that’s not all! Stacey also rocked a shorter, curly flip hairstyle in a later edition. The Stacey face sculpt became so iconic that it was even used for Malibu Barbie. Get ready to be charmed by this fashionable and versatile doll!

Steffie (1972)

In 1972, Steffie made her debut in the Barbie world, and although only three versions were produced, her face sculpt left a lasting impression. It became the inspiration for several Barbie family dolls that followed, most notably the beloved PJ doll.

However, Steffie’s influence extended beyond the borders of the United States. Some Barbies from that era, released internationally, also sported the iconic Steffie face sculpt.

Interestingly, there was a slight mix-up in a 1972 Mattel advertisement. The doll pictured, known as “Busy Steffie,” was referred to as “Busy PJ.” This confusion reinforces the fact that Steffie’s face, often associated with the PJ doll, is the one that truly captures the essence of Steffie herself.

What sets Steffie apart is that she was the first Mattel doll to exclusively use the Midge face sculpt, abandoning her previous variation with a PJ face sculpt. Hence, “Steffie Face” was born to celebrate this groundbreaking change.

Cara (1975-1976)

Cara, along with her boyfriend Curtis, joins Barbie’s other African-American couple, Brad and Christie, in the world of fashion and fun. With options like Free Moving Cara, Ballerina Cara, and both Quick Curl and Deluxe Quick Curl Cara, there’s a Cara for every occasion. 

Sporting the beautiful Steffie face, Cara is the perfect companion for Christie, who continues to grace the Malibu, Fashion Photo, and Superstar lines. 

Whitney (1986-1991)

She was first unveiled as part of the Jewel Secrets Barbie line, known for her glamorous appearance resembling a Barbie doll. With her beautiful brunette hair and the classic Steffie face, Whitney became an instant favorite. 

She made a comeback in 1987 as Nurse Whitney in the Doctor Barbie collection, and again in the same year as Perfume Pretty Whitney. In 1988, she brought her style magic to the Style Magic Barbie line. Her final appearance was as the exclusive Ultra Hair Whitney in Europe. Whitney truly left a lasting impression during her time in the Barbie world.

More Barbie Doll Friends’ Names

Becky (1997-1999): Barbie’s wheelchair-using friend who appeared in the Detective Barbie and Secret Agent Barbie series.

Kayla and Lea (2000-2006): Kayla and Lea were released together, with Kayla being depicted as a different races and Lea as an Asian girl. However, Kayla was eventually discontinued, leaving the Barbie line without Asian dolls until Lea’s reintroduction in 2014.

Jamie (1970-1972): A redheaded walking friend.

Kelley (1973-1974): Not to be confused with another doll named Kelly, Kelley had Quick Curl hair and appeared in the Yellowstone series.

Lia Douglas (1980s): An exclusive Brazilian doll who appeared in the Rockers and Perfume Pretty lines.

Dalma “Diva” Lancaster (1980s): Another Brazilian exclusive doll with blonde hair and a nickname similar to Ophelia from the Rockers line.

Devon (1989): A black girl who appeared in the Dance Club line.

Kayla Vanderbilt (1989): A Dutch American redhead who appeared in the Dance Club line.

Tracy (1983): A brunette friend who was sold in a wedding gown.

Nia (1989): A Native American girl who appeared in the Western Fun line.

Viky (1989): A Brazilian friend of Barbie, exclusively released in Brazil, with Steffie’s face sculpted.

Tara Lynn (1994): Known as Tina in Brazil, she was a black-haired girl from the Western Stampin’ line.

Lara Scottsdale (1992): A brunette, Brazil-exclusive doll who only appeared in their edition of the Superstar line.

Reina (1999): Barbie’s Japanese friend, exclusively released in Japan and dressed in a schoolgirl outfit.

Drew (2002-2005): Appearing in the Mystery Squad and Fashion Fever lines.

Melody and Simone (2003): Melody had blue hair and Simone was an African American doll, both appearing in the 1 Modern Circle line. Simone also reappeared in the American Idol line in 2005.

Shannen (2005): A blonde doll from the Fashion Fever line.

Maiko (2006): A geisha collector doll.

Harper Villa (2016-2018): The first “curvy” friend of Barbie, with blue hair, appearing in the Fashionistas line and vlogs.

Renee Chow (2016–Present): Renee is a gymnast and sporty character who appears in Barbie: Spy Squad and Dreamhouse Adventures. She is Chinese American.

Daisy Costopolis (2018–Present): A curvy friend of Barbie with pink hair, featured in Dreamhouse Adventures.

Tia, Courtney, and Desiree (2004): Fashion Fever dolls who may resemble characters from The Barbie Diaries but are separate individuals.

May Chung Ling (2008-2009): Barbie’s Shanghai friend, exclusively released in the Barbie Shanghai boutique. She has a love for ice cream and enjoys singing and dancing. Only two versions of May would be released before the boutique closed.


Ultimately, we can all learn a little something from these timeless childhood dolls. Although their counterparts may come and go, the names of Barbie’s friends will never change. 

This shows that friendships are much more than fads; they remain constant long after the years have gone by. 

Furthermore, it demonstrates that even with a diverse collection of personalities and backgrounds, Barbie and her close circle of friends share an unconditional love for one another. 

We all have the power to foster this kind of supportiveness in our communities by being accepting and understanding of each other’s differences. 

After all, if Barbie and her doll friends can get along—despite their considerable age gap—there’s no reason why we can’t do the same! So let’s take a note out of Barbie’s book and strive to be more understanding, open-minded, and loving people in our everyday lives.

 Who knows – maybe today is the day you invite an old friend you haven’t seen in years over for cupcakes?

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