IT 2017 Unveiling – Nu Face – The Heirloom Collection Review

We’re back after a while with a sizzling review that encompasses feminism, gender and race discussions and we can’t wait to hear from you!

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I had such expectations for this one… But let’s start at the beginning and I’ll begin with an apology. I know that lots have happened in the doll world in these recent months and I have seemed to be completely absent-minded about them. I wasn’t, but I was in no condition to write about them either. Or to present the doll reviews I promised on the previous Nu Face Collection. I don’t know if they are still relevant, but I will either publish them or sum them up in a “The Good, The Bad and The Ugly” post, because much of what’s in there influenced in my buying decision this time around. But my silence has a reason. I posted on my Facebook that I was under the weather. Well, I live in Rio de Janeiro, and #WinterIsHere at the Southern Hemisphere.

 

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#KingInTheNorth Jon Snow makes everything better. Image courtesy of HBO

 

I won’t make a sad post out of this one, or give you the gruesome details, but my cold/flu was nothing compared to when Jo got under the weather. Nothing. There’s a brutal difference between me and her in this aspect, and it’s called “Bronchitis”. That’s a word I truly, truly hate. Let’s just say that when the love of your life gets sick the world loses it’s natural Technicolor, and dolls ended up hanging pretty low on that list of priorities, even though we do have a doll fashion shop which helps us make a living.

 

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Me in the last few months. Found on the web. Not mine.

 

But she’s much better now, and we’re back in action! And then IT announced an Unveiling Event with Fashion Royalty and Nu Face at the same time. Considering our recent medical bills, the announcement gave me a distinct doomsday feeling.

 

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One Unveiling To Rule Them All. Font: Giphy

 

Well, so we got to last Saturday full of anticipation and dread at the same time… And we escaped with our pockets intact. Why? Because none of the dolls (except that very very special pair in the end of this post) managed to rock our hearts. Sometimes we liked the outfit but not the doll. Sometimes we liked the doll but not the outfit. Once, we literally screamed in frustration. But all in all, it wasn’t what I expected to see at all. But let’s get to it, shall we?

The Nu Face collection, called Heirloom, was designed by Jessy Ayala. When they announced the name, and mentioned thrifting, family heirlooms, and a goth atmosphere I almost squealed. I have the soul of a goth girl. Jo has the soul of a boho spirit. It sounded right up our alley… But the magic didn’t happen.

On to the collection. This is straight out of the email: “Named “The Heirloom Collection” by its creator, Jessy Ayala, this edgy entry in the NU. Face collection is dedicated to all of those little items we own in our personal closets that make our looks so special. Each doll in this series comes with one special item that is true and dear to her. Maybe it’s a special pair of earrings, a delicate brush or a fabulous mirror, but it’s definitely meant to be cherished for generations to come!”

Before we get started, it’s important to say that all the girls in this Collection come in the Nu Face 3.0 Body, which is the latest body type, and they are, all of them, high-heeled girls. No flat feet in this collection yet. Also, the waist joint is now gone. These dolls do not have it. You’ll find the tech specs for each girl below, and you’ll be able to see the same info for yourself.

So far so good. Let’s get to the dolls themselves. First one up was Imogen, who is now Imogen Lennox!

 

Item # 82084
Charmed Life
Imogen Lennox Dressed Doll
The Heirloom Collection
The 2017 NU. Face™ Collection
Edition Size: 725
Estimated Delivery: Fall/Winter 2017
Retail Price: $140.00 US

Doll Tech Specs:
 
Head Sculpt: Imogen
Body: NF 3.0
Foot Sculpt: High-heeled
Skin Tone: Japan
Hair Color: Ginger

Eyelashes: Yes, Hand-applied
Quickswitch: No
2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Charmed Life Imogen 03
Isn’t she a lovely doll? Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Imogen is now a Lennox! I love the fact that Jessy gave them surnames. Here’s her description from the email:

“Imogen Lennox comes from a long line of beautiful women and when she was scouted by the NU. Face agency, clearly she stood out from the crowd. Her unique look always gives her an edge and she’s in high-demand, whether she’s doing runway shows in London (her native city) or traveling to some exotic locale for a stunning photo shoot. No matter where she goes, Imogen always takes her lucky brooch with her. It has been in her family for generations and has become an intricate part of her look!
Imogen is a fully articulated 12.5 inch fashion doll with fully rooted hair. In this collection, her edgy look is composed of a whimsical bouffant satin skirt over a 3/4 sleeved brocade bodysuit, which sports an elaborate lacing detail at the back. She completes this cool look with a metallic-finish purse, short lacy gloves and over-sized chunky boots. Her unique screening also features soft freckles. For adult collectors ages 15 and up only. This doll cannot stand alone; a doll stand is included.”
2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Imogen Collage 01
LEFT: Louis Vuitton Pre-Fall 2016. Courtesy of Vogue.com. RIGHT: Imogen. Courtesy of IT. 

 

After his take on Moschino for the Reckless Collection, Jessy Ayala took on the Pre-Fall 2016 – Fall/Winter 2016 Cycle at Louis Vuitton. It makes sense. Nicolas Ghesquière’s LV is heavily anime-inspired, youthful and vibrant. So is this Imogen. Her gorgeous hair color pops and so does her make up. And she has FRECKLES!!! I’m a huge fan of freckles, and I’ve painted them on many of my dolls way before Freckles became a thing. Here’s one of my dolls with freckles on her. This photo is from 2013/14. There are more on my personal Flickr Page, including some of my freckled “London Mist” Imogen.

 

Miss Mood (1)
“Lady In Red” Erin is “Miss Mood”. Photo by me. All Rights Reserved.

 

But back to the review: if I love Imogen, love Freckles on an Imogen and love freckles, why didn’t I Pre-order her? The first and second answers are in this photo:

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Charmed Life Imogen 05
1 – The Awful, awful bodysuit. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Now this is becoming a trope for IT since the “Lead Singles” Giftset back in 2012. Falling back on bright pink or Halloweeny purple fabrics and covering them up with “something black” to fancy it up. We saw some more of this on the “Never Ordinary” giftset. I didn’t like it then and I don’t like it now. Purple may have been the color of Royalty from Ancient Rome to the Elizabethan Age (in which it was restricted to the Royals by the “Sumptuary Laws”), but right now it only makes me think of cheezy teenage horror movies and cheap Halloween costumes. Also, comparing with the LV top part, the bodysuit feels boring.

Second reason: though I love her hair color, I find these ponytails very restricting, and high ponytails are too childish. Up to today I’ve undone all of them on my dolls, and I’ve found bald spots beneath and it’s impossible to keep the doll hair in place after undoing it. Also, it’s a pity we can’t see her brooch in the close-up shots. We only get a glimpse of it from far away and then a bad side view of it in the accessory pic.

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Charmed Life Imogen 02
Back view of her outfit. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Her skirt has a beautiful color and I kinda like it although I’m not a big fan of mullet skirts in general. It also looks puffier than the LV one, to the point of “floating” instead of draping. I blame the taffeta. I love her fishnets and combat boots and the purse is adorable. See below.

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Charmed Life Imogen 06
I LOVE her accessories. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

So, though I REALLY like her accessories, and I think she’s a beautiful doll, the ponytail that would make me reroot her and her outfit made me resist her. I’ll leave her behind with her gorgeous head shot and move on to the next doll.

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Charmed Life Imogen 04
Gorgeousness. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All rights Reserved.

 

Next up is Erin Salston, one of the oldest and dearest Nu face girls:

 

Item # 82085
Heiress
Erin Salston Dressed Doll
The Heirloom Collection
The 2017 NU. Face™ Collection
Edition Size: 725
Estimated Delivery: Fall/Winter 2017
Retail Price: $140.00 US

Doll Tech Specs:
 
Head Sculpt: Erin 2.0
Body: NF 3.0
Foot Sculpt: High-heeled
Skin Tone: Latino
Hair Color: Amber Brown
Eyelashes: Yes, Hand-applied
Quickswitch: No
2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Heiress Erin Salston 02
#RichBitch. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Straight out of the email:

“Erin Salston will not settle for less than the latest designer clothing, but she will make an exception for her mother’s antique “FR” mini-case. How can anyone resist such a timeless piece of fashion art? She certainly can’t and that little case always goes wherever she does!
 
Erin Salston is a 12.5 inch fully articulated fashion doll with rooted hair. In this collection, Erin travels to her next modeling assignment wearing the latest designer jacket, which she unexpectedly matched with a shiny lurex skirt with a black net overlay, perfectly on-trend this season. Erin completes the look with high-heeled lace-up booties, mesh stockings and of course, her favorite FR mini-case. For adult collectors ages 15 and up only. This doll cannot stand alone; a doll stand is included.”

 

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Erin Collage 01
LEFT: Gucci Bomber and Lace Skirt. Courtesy of Gucci.com. RIGHT: Erin. Courtesy of IT.

 

For a collection soundly inspired by Louis Vuitton, Erin came out very Gucci-esque. I LOVE her daring jacket and I like her skirt. Sorta. The only LV trace I found on her was the lovely bag, that supposedly belonged to her mother and that she carries around with her according to her storyline. She’s on a “Latino” skintone, and I think she would be a beautiful doll, but…

 

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Heiress Erin Salston 01
Why is she squinting? photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Right Reserved.

 

That’s what I asked Jo as soon as we saw her.  Now, I know she’s not squinting, but her eyes look so small that her bitchfacing pose looks like what I do when I need to see something that’s too far. Her eyes felt too small and that turned me off. I like intense expressions, and her eyes felt dead to me. I like her lip color though and her skintone and hair color as well.

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Heiress Erin Salston 04
Close Up. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Taking a closer look at her outfit I found the skirt waist to be a bit bulky. I’ll have to see it in real life to be sure. The jacket is downright gorgeous and I really want to get it when she’s released. I like her drop earrings and I love her bag. Her boots will be a trial to put on, like those chain shoes from last time around. It has no opening in the back. I have an intense arachnophobia, so I’ll refrain from commenting on her ring. I’ll leave her with her accessory pic and move on to the next girl.

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Heiress Erin Salston 05
Lovely accessories except… Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

And next up is Rayna, one of my favorite dolls from the Nu face line.

 

Item # 82083
Neo-Romantic
Rayna Ahmadi Dressed Doll
The Heirloom Collection
The 2017 NU. Face™ Collection
Edition Size: 775
Estimated Delivery: Fall/Winter 2017
Retail Price: $140.00 US

Doll Tech Specs:
 
Head Sculpt: Rayna
Body: NF 3.0
Foot Sculpt: High-heeled
Skin Tone: Latino
Hair Color: Dark Espresso
Eyelashes: Yes, Hand-applied
Quickswitch: No
2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Neo-Romantic Rayna Ahmadi 02
Erm… Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Like Imogen, Rayna is now an Ahmadi. Here’s her info, straight out of the email:

“Rayna Ahmadi is a major fashionista and she loves fashion so much that she has an entire room in her fashionable London flat dedicated to her extensive collection of fashion accessories and jewelry of all sorts. Of course, the one thing that totally stands out is her large cuff bracelet, which is an antique jewelry piece that was handed down by her grandmother. Generations of women in her family have worn this piece and it has now become her signature!
 
Rayna is a beautiful 12.5 inch articulated doll with fully rooted hair. For this collection, Rayna dons one of her favorite looks; an edgy urban style with enough sex-appeal to make sure everyone remembers her name no matter what she does! Composed of a fitted knitted turtleneck bodysuit with oversized drop-shoulder sleeves under a pair of daringly low, ultra-fitted motocross pants, Rayna is ready to set new trends! For adult collectors ages 15 and up only. This doll cannot stand alone; a doll stand is included.”
2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Neo-Romantic Rayna Ahmadi 01
She would have been great. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

So, Rayna’s got a surname, and sports a silver/gunmetal version of Upgrade Gigi’s golden cuff/ring bracelet. So very, very Bollywood/Eastern. I think it’s the perfect heirloom for her. About the doll, Rayna was one of the ones that made me more frustrated.

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Rayna Collage 01
LEFT: Louis Vuitton Pre-Fall 2016. Courtesy of Vogue.com. RIGHT: Rayna. Courtesy of IT

 

We’re clearly back into LV Territory here, and they reproduced one of my favorite looks from the Pre-Fall 2016 Lookbook… Sorta. Replacing wine red for hot pink was not a happy choice IMO. And where’s that gorgeous, goth and daring cropped Aran sweater and glove combo?

 

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That’s how I felt. GIF Font: Tumblr.com. Not mine.

 

It’s not that I dislike the bodysuit… completely… But I feel it’s a poor replacement for that intricate sweater. Plus, the high neck, big rumba sleeves and her hair together made a big blob at the top. It would have been easily solved with a braid though. A trendy hairdo that would give us a clean view of her head and neck. I still think my girls could rock the bodysuit though, with jeans and heels. Love her tassel earrings. Really really do. Her bag too. I don’t like her boots. I don’t feel they’re a happy choice. It made her silhouette shorten and it looks too brute along with the not-so-narrow leggings. Her glasses are spot on. But the biggest turn off was her make up.

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Neo-Romantic Rayna Ahmadi 03
Nope. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

See the blob I mentioned above? Also, I love the side part, but see the way it has a bulk? That won’t disappear when we take the glue/gel off. It’ll get bigger instead. My “On The Rise” Elyse is here to prove it.  Ok, on to the make up. Not purple/lilac eyeshadow again… Please IT, I’ll go down on my knees and beg if I have too. Please put the purples and lilacs aside for a while. Her make up didn’t light up her eyes at all. Quite on the contrary. It made them smaller, and therefore lost in the glasses frame and overall hair/bodysuit blob. So I passed on her, suffering for what she might have been.

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Neo-Romantic Rayna Ahmadi 05
Nice Accessories all in all.  Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

And on to the next girl, the one that made Jo jump out of the chair and scream her social scientist rage at the screen.

 

Item # 82086
Vanity & Glamour
Nadja Rhymes Close-Up Doll
The Heirloom Collection
The 2017 NU. Face™ Collection
Edition Size: 725
Estimated Delivery: Fall/Winter 2017
Retail Price: $120.00 US

Doll Tech Specs:
 
Head Sculpt: Nadja 2.0
Body: NF 3.0
Foot Sculpt: High-heeled
Skin Tone: A-Tone
Hair Color: Sterling Silver
Eyelashes: Yes, Hand-applied

Quickswitch: No
2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Vanity And Glamour Nadja Rhymes 03
The Almost Ororo. Photo by Integrity toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Jo’s head and mine went on completely different directions with this one. I was beginning to say Ororo, when Jo – who’s not Caucasian – jumped out of her chair by my side and literally screamed: “WHY IS THE BLACK GIRL ALWAYS NAKED???!!!!”. I stopped. Blinked twice. And agreed.

From her email. Please pay close attention to the parts in Bold:

“Nadja Rhymes always loves to show her sensuous side in a fabulously glam way! Dressed to seduce in this gorgeous lingerie set, Nadja poses with her favorite hand-held mirror. Will the mirror tell who is the fairest one of all? It’s safe to say that in her case, it’s totally her!
Nadja Rhymes is a 12.5 articulated doll with fully rooted hair. This “close-up” version of everyone’s favorite NU. Face model wears one of the most beautiful lingerie sets ever created for a doll this scale. Wearing a delicately constructed black shrug embelished in black petals over her sexy lingerie set, this girl is a real knockout! Nadja includes shoes, jewelry and her lovely vintage chrome handheld mirror. For adult collectors ages 15 and up only. This doll cannot stand alone; a doll stand is included.”
2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Vanity And Glamour Nadja Rhymes 01
Is sexiness all there is to it in a black girl? Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

This is an endless discussion, with many valid ponts to be made and I’d love to hear everyone’s thoughts on the matter because we don’t consider it a closed case by a long shot. I also don’t mean to simply throw stones at IT especifically and call them any names, because I don’t think they deserve such treatment. I’m talking about something much broader than IT, and much older than any Fashion Doll factory out there.

Let me first say that both Jo and I are feminists, we believe in the “Radical Notion That Men and Women Are Equals”. And both of us strongly believe in “My Body, My Rules.” Are you still with me? Good. Because we need to talk about how the extremely “White-Oriented Slaver Society” of the 19th Century over-sexualized Black Women to cover up for rape. Yes, unfortunately, from a historic standpoint, the over exposure of black women especifically as “exotic”, “sexy”, “temptresses” meant to draw a line between them and white women, which were often depicted as “pure”, “saintly”, “honest” (honest meant “virgin”, “faithful” and/or “chaste” in the 19th and Early 20th Centuries depending on the context). In very simple terms, this line was meant as education for white men, and meant “treat the white ones well and do whatever you like with the black ones”. The recent movie “12 Years as a Slave” is an excellent example of what I’m saying. Take a closer look at how Michael Fassbender’s and Sarah Paulson’s characters interact with Lupita N’yongo’s. Now, just in the interest of full disclosure, “12 Years as a Slave” was based in an actual biography, which is one of the few known examples of the cruel reality of Slavery in the 19th Century U.S., told from a former-slave standpoint.

Slavery came to end, yes, and we live in a different world, but we all know that the fight for Equal Rights is far from done. We all know that women receive less than men, and we also know that black women still receive less than white women. And also importantly, we all know that people still hire women based on appearance, that there are huge prejudice issues with natural hair when it comes to black women, and that their beautiful hairdos and black powers are still labeled as “not taking care of their hair”, and even in a derogatory way as “manes” and other ugly words I don’t want to repeat.

We also know that propaganda is a powerful tool because it enforces a beauty ideal and produces mass-behavior by simply not showing that there are alternatives. And the ideal that propaganda sells is clearly “white-oriented” in spite of the diversity that can be found in nowadays’ societies. How often do we get to see an empowered black woman and her natural hair in propaganda? And how many times do we get to see a black woman with artificially straightened hair and often times dyed blonde too? All women are beautiful, but the point is that the origin of the discomfort of many women with their self-image is in mass-market propaganda and in the remains of slave-culture that still persist nowadays. And that’s exactly where Jo’s shout makes sense.

When you join slave culture with propaganda, you get not only a hair stereotype, but also a body stereotype, which is closely associated with constant availability for sex, the worst of all rape-culture myths that still makes women be afraid of walking the streets alone. Black women are constantly portrayed in our midiatic culture as “Bodacious”, “Curvy”, “Sensual” “Temptresses”. Wait, did I just hear an echo from the 19th Century? And what about their brains? What about their sensibility? Do black women think and feel, according to what propaganda shows us, or do we need Viola Davis to make that point for us everytime we see black women being reduced to their bodies on TV?

 

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I Know, Viola. GIF Font: tumblr

 

Black women are obviously intelligent, smart, gorgeous, sensitive, good, generous. They laugh and cry and shout and struggle to be heard. They have to struggle to be taken seriously more than the average white woman. They are scientists, doctors, lawyers, painters, writers, activists or not. They may be all for showing their bodies or not. They may be curvy or not. They may be shy. They may not fit the stereotype. They may not even want to fit it. They may fight against it, and shout when they see a doll that goes against all that they believe, because they wanted so much to love that doll and relate to her if only she came with clothes on…

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Vanity And Glamour Nadja Rhymes 04
Missing: Doll Clothes.  Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Let’s take a trip through time and count the proportion of black dolls described as “sensuous”, “bodacious”, “sexy”, that come scantily clad. Do the same for the white dolls. Exclude the ones who are said to be scantily clad for a Specific Purpose (Like: this girl looks fab for her photoshoot…). What did you find out? Do that for other doll companies too. Don’t be shy! Let’s consider just the two more recent Nadjas from the Nu Face line. Isn’t this outfit very similar to her previous one, just with a smaller coat? Now, let’s take a look at them side by side, shall we?

 

2017 nu face heirloom nadja comparison collage 01
Wait, what? Is this selling a body image? Photos by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Now, let’s take a look at Nadja and Giselle together, shall we?

 

2017 nu face heirloom nadja comparison collage 02
See the difference? Photos by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Now, compare the current Nadja with her current counterparts. See Ayumi’s description below. The point is: Although I LOVE when women (and dolls) of ANY COLOR are comfortable with their bodies and decide to show them because they want to and feel free about themselves, I DON’T LIKE to see a specific doll color CONSTANTLY ASSOCIATED to a SPECIFIC STEREOTYPE. Especially when that specific stereotype is still used as a “justification for rape” (The horrible “she was asking for it with those clothes on”), that all of us have already heard someone saying at least once. Treat black dolls accordingly to the white ones. Give them clothes, accessories and show that they have a brain and a life. Please. I rest my case.

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Vanity And Glamour Nadja Rhymes 05
On to the doll herself. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Aside from our point on machism, propaganda and slave culture, what can I say about her? She comes with lingerie and a coat whose source I didn’t identify. Her jewelry is nothing new. Nor are her shoes and stockings. She has no clothes to speak of, but comes with a mirror. Doesn’t do justice for just 20 USD less. Her lipstick ruined her for me, because if she had black lipstick she would make sense in the goth theme she’s supposed to be a part of AND look like Ororo Munroe, A.K.A. Storm, another beautiful black character we so often see naked. but hey, did you know she’s the best leader the X-Men ever had? Screw Scott Summers!

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Vanity And Glamour Nadja Rhymes 06
Mirror, Mirror… Photo by Integrity toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

On to the next girl, another basic one. Ayumi this time.

 

Item # 82087
Hauntingly Lovely
Ayumi Nakamura Close-Up Doll
The Heirloom Collection
The 2017 NU. Face™ Collection
Edition Size: 825
Estimated Delivery: Fall/Winter 2017
Retail Price: $120.00 US

Doll Tech Specs:
 
Head Sculpt: Ayumi 3.0
Body: NF 3.0
Foot Sculpt: High-heeled
Skin Tone: FR White
Hair Color: Baby Blond
Eyelashes: Yes, Hand-applied
Quickswitch: No
2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Hauntingly Lovely Ayumi Nakamura 01
The “Geisha” Trope. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Let me just begin with her name please: Does “Hauntingly Lovely” make you think of something like this?

 

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Can it get more haunting then Tim Burton? GIF font: Tumblr

 

And how does that oppose to Nadja’s image? Well, her description straight from the email might help us distinguish it. There will be Bold parts for comparison with the Nadja description. Please pay close attention to them too.

“Ayumi Nakamura loves to blend her style with her friend Nadja’s and the two have been seen modeling for one of the top lingerie designers on the planet. Since they love contrasts, Ayumi wears a delicate cream-colored petal embroidered cardigan over her own devilishly amazing lingerie set, while she brushes her lovely tresses, waiting for her turn to go in front of the camera.
 
Ayumi is a 12.5 inch articulated fashion doll with rooted hair. She comes dressed in a luscious lingerie set, coupled with a delicious little knitted cardigan that features perfectly scaled petals all over the sleeves. Ayumi comes complete with her mother’s cameo ring and heirloom silver plated hand-held brush and leather shoes. For adult collectors ages 15 and up only. This doll cannot stand alone; a doll stand is included.”
2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Hauntingly Lovely Ayumi Nakamura 02
Naked for a reason. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

I won’t go into another raging fit about the famous “Geisha” fantasy that we also know exists, although it did call my attention that the Asian girl is the “other naked girl” of the two basic dolls they released. I will just say that when it came to Ayumi, who’s seen here in the FR White skintone (which means Caucasian), They gave her a reason to be naked. That’s right! Ayumi is not just a girl who “loves to seduce”. Oh no. She’s a professional, mind you. And this is a photoshoot. Even Nadja is included in her storyline as part of the photoshoot too. Funny, that they didn’t mention it above… Bottom line is: when they give Ayumi a “reason” to be naked, they appeal to a more conservative public, which might balk at buying “nakedness for nakedness”, especially if it’s a naked white girl. Because due to propaganda, most people don’t frown at seeing a black girl naked anymore. Media has naturalized that along the latest decades. Plus, via “flowery cardigan”, you get the “virgin white girl” trope right there.

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Hauntingly Lovely Ayumi Nakamura 03
Missing: Doll Clothes. Part 2. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved. 

 

Rant over, what’s there to say? Ayumi’s make up reminds me a lot of her previous incarnation. I love the cameo ring. The hairbrush is cute (as was Nadja’s mirror), but they don’t make up for her lack of clothes for 20 USD less. IT sells basic girls in lingerie for 99 USD. The sold “Fresh and Delightful” Vero for 89 USD. So, she didn’t convince me to open my wallet.

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Hauntingly Lovely Ayumi Nakamura 05
Nice ring! Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

And finally, The Grand Finale! Which was indeed Grand!

 

 

Item # 82082
Poetic Beauty
Lilith and Eden Blair Twin-Doll Gift Set
The Heirloom Collection
The 2017 NU. Face™ Collection
Edition Size: 925
Estimated Delivery: September 2017
Retail Price: $199.00 US

Doll Tech Specs:
 
Head Sculpt: Lilith and Eden
Body: NF 3.0
Foot Sculpt: High-heeled
Skin Tone: Cream
Hair Color: Mahogany (Lilith) and 

Pale Honey (Eden)

Eyelashes: Yes, Hand-applied
Quickswitch: No

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Poetic Beauty Eden and Lilith Giftset 03
OMFG. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

YES!!! It’s the Twins!!! And they’re FABULOUS!!! They’re outfits are both heavily inspired by Louis Vuitton, and to me they are the true embodiment of the Goth spirit of the Heirloom Collection! Let’s start with Lilith, shall we?

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Poetic Beauty Comparison Collage 01
LEFT: Louis Vuitton Fall 2016. Courtesy of Vogue.com. RIGHT: Lilith. Courtesy of Integrity Toys.

 

And we’re back to Louis Vuitton. This outfit was easily recognizable for me and I LOVED it! Love the choice to style her in sexy and gorgeously detailed matching boots. The zipper on her top is functional, and goes down all the way to make it become a dress! I’m a huge fan of neutral make up, and Lilith’s is spot on for me! Flawless!

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Poetic Beauty Eden and Lilith Giftset 07
Check the embroidery on the top! Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Love the detail on her faux leather leggings, reminescent of Reckless Giselle’s pants. It really feels like Reckless was taken a step forward here in this giftset. It has the same youthful vibe with darker colors. I Really love it! Also check her tassel earrings below:

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Poetic Beauty Eden and Lilith Giftset 03
Those earrings will go so well with my OOAK S&M Lilith… Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

Lovely bag too! Now, let’s check her Twin:

 

2017 Nu face Heirloom Collection Poetic Beauty Giftset collage 02
LEFT: Louis Vuitton Fall 2016. Courtesy of Vogue.com. MIDDLE: Eden. Courtesy of IT. RIGHT: Louis Vuitton Spring 2016. Courtesy of Vogue.com

 

Her vest came straight out of LV’s Fall 16 runway, but the cut of her dress reminds me more of the “poet shirt dreses” of LV’s Spring 16 runway. Again, the boots are a gorgeous choice here. Again, the LV bags are well done and well-styled. Very on trend.

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Poetic Beauty Eden and Lilith Giftset 08
Ah this dress makes me sigh. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

The dress has a lovely print in perfect scale. Note the ribbon in her hair and the tassel earrings to match her sister’s.

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Poetic Beauty Eden and Lilith Giftset 04
So very beautiful! Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

These girls will be offered via Right to Buy Lottery closer to their release date for W Club members only, and again Jo and I both will enter for them. I am absolutely in love with them both, and I can’t even say which one’s my favorite! I hope I’ll be able to win at least one set!

 

2017 Nu Face Heirloom Collection Poetic Beauty Eden and Lilith Giftset 09
Their lovely accessories. Photo by Integrity Toys INC. All Rights Reserved.

 

All in all, I like the Heirloom collection, but only in bits and pieces. When I liked the doll, the outfit didn’t conquer me. When I liked the outfit, the doll turned me off. About the image issues, as a social scientist I’m bound to point them out, but I don’t think they’re exclusive to Integrity Toys at all. It’s a bigger question, and it bumps on so many topics that it’s impossible to narrow it down to one company, one doll and make it a reason to brandish pitchforks at them alone. I’m also not judging people for buying a doll they love. People buy dolls for many different reasons, and as I said, nakedness is so naturalized these days that many won’t bat an eye at it, or will like it, and all reactions are equally fine. It is also not in any way meant to mean that women should cover up to be taken seriously. We should do whatever we damn want and be taken seriously at all times. It’s just pointing out something that is not done by women for women, but that has its roots in a terrible time and it’s still out there. There are many ways to address this question, and I’d love to hear from you and even from IT if this ever reaches them (although my blog is small, so that’s unlikely).

Overall, what I wish is for toy companies to take some time to think on what they are selling, because dolls are image builders and also a product of an already built image. Maybe it’s time that we take a moment and ponder about the pros and cons of an image that was built for us and not by us (women) before putting a product up for production. Maybe we should consider offering something more variable to convey the idea that we’re not just following a stereotype that puts sexiness as the only needed quality in a product. That’s all folks!

I hope you enjoyed this review.

xoxo

Marcela.

 

5 thoughts on “IT 2017 Unveiling – Nu Face – The Heirloom Collection Review

  1. Enjoyed your posts and pictures. Nadja is one of my favorite dolls and easily the most beautiful in the last two collections- so I was also disappointed with her lack of clothing. I think your observations are astute ones.

    I still got this Nadja to be my Storm doll though… shouldn’t be too hard to piece together a more appropriate outfit hopefully. But I would have preferred an entire outfit. And pants for my last Nadja…

    Like

  2. This is endemic of all major corporations in the world. There is never a voice advocating for the disenfranchised unless there has been a recent lawsuit taking the organization to task.

    This is why I am in the process of forming an ethnic fashion doll company so that there is a more egalitarian representation of people in general.

    Instead of begging for a seat at the table, we need to create our own and represent ourselves.

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  3. The thing that bothered me about Nadja isn’t that she’s in lingerie (or the doll herself) – it’s that more than a few of the comments about her were ‘she looks like a streetwalker’. But there were no comments about Ayumi looking like a whore, even though she’s in lingerie too. Like… so a woman in lingerie is automatically a whore? And even if Nadja is sexual and proud of it (which we don’t know because A: it’s not talked about and B: she’s a doll and has no sex life), that still doesn’t make her a whore. Only actually taking money for sex gives that title… and I still don’t think that’s a big deal (that’s a whole ‘nother argument). Anyway, the slut shaming of the black character when a pale skinned character is wearing just as little really pissed me off. Also, I have to agree about black dolls having white person’s hair. The dolls with afros and buzzed nap and other natural black hairstyles are few and far between, and IT’s NEVER done a doll with dreadlocks. As a white person, I didn’t immediately pick up on the slave sexualization, but I do find it very interesting to see this perspective explained and it will give me something to think about.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good morning Kate!

      I’ve just seen your message and it has given me a lot to think about too. I replied to you on facebook first.
      I don’t go to doll boards very often, and I’m sad to know that people public shamed Nadja because if there’s someone whos not to blame, that’s her. Being a doll, to begin with, she has as much choice of outfit as she has a sexual life. None whatsoever. I am even sadder to know that those who public-shamed her refrained from doing the same with Ayumi, but it only reinforces what I talked about in the post. Racism and sexism are two of the oldest concepts in mankind an they are hammered into us by media and naturalized by it until people don’t know the difference when it comes to subtle gestures and stereotypes.
      The sheer difference in the way media in general portrays women of color and white women should serve as an indication that there’s something wrong with what we see on it. Due to machism, people with extremely conservative postures find it much easier to shame “x” woman instead of “y” woman because of the clothes she wears. I don’t approve of it, but it happens as we know. Now, take it to how media portrays white women and women of color and you have an incitation to public shaming based on color. What’s wrong is not how a woman dresses, but how media works on a 200 year old stereotype that misinterprets women, particularly women of color, and transforms that into products to be sold depicting and furthering an image that may not belong to those women, but that will make people believe it does, and commit terrible acts based on that presumption.

      About whores, I don’t shame them, I don’t like to see them being shamed. I listed all the reasons why they have all my respect on the Facebook post. I believe that all women are free to do as they please with themselves and that that’s not a reason to shame them, and that when someone goes out of their way to shame a woman it might be because they fear her freedom and self-knowledge. But that’s a lot more to say about this and right now I must log out…

      Like

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