Toys Get Sex Change:  Girls Get Their Own LEGO

Toys Get Sex Change: Girls Get Their Own LEGO

Toymakers Using Sex Changes to Appeal to Both Genders

Because 90 percent of the children buying Lego toys were boys, the Danish-based company that produces them decided to offer a version featuring pink Lego blocks in order to attract more female customers.

The new “girl” version of LEGO has been a commerical success.

Market Watch writes:

Though some questioned the need for a version with pink blocks, “Lego Friends,” introduced in January 2012, proved to be a huge hit. Girls now account for 25% of purchases, and helped to increase overall sales for Lego by 25% last year, to $4.2 billion, according to results released last week. “Lego Friends” requires the same skills as “Lego Star Wars” and “Lego Kingdoms” for boys, but features less martial themes, and include tree houses, civic parks, dolls houses and pet salons.

Still not everyone is pumped about the gender specific LEGO.

Activists have whipped up a petition asking the company to take the girly LEGO sets off the market.

“Narrow stereotypes associated with pink and blue simply box kids in from an early age,” wrote Stephanie Cole, one of the #LiberateLEGO petition’s founders. “But, raising healthy girls and boys is all about creating a wide range of possibilities and options for our children. This is why LEGO’s latest marketing campaign has parents so angry.”

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This is not the first time that toymakers have modified toys that are traditionally popular with just one sex in order to achieve a change that also attracts the opposite sex.

Although dolls have traditionally been a market targeted at girls, the Hasbro company achieved a profitable sex change by begining to call some of their dolls “action figures”, making the “G.I.Joe” series a big hit.

Likewise, Mattel recently launched a Build ‘n Style version of its popular Barbie doll focusing on construction skills that traditionally have been male dominated.

Hasbro has premiered a more masculine-looking silver, black and blue version of its popular Easy Bake Oven to attract boys who like to cook, and Spin Master launches its “Flutterbye Flying Fairies” this summer to compete with boy-favorite military style helicopter toys.

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