The first Barbie dolls were shown at Toy Fair in 1959. Several different types and variations have existed since then, but there are
six basic versions of the original doll, numbered (by diehard collectors) as Barbies #1 thru #6.
The #1 Barbie from 1959 is made of hard vinyl and has straight (unbendable) legs. The hair is either blonde or dark (blondes are
about 3 times more common), and styled in a ponytail; the bangs are curled. The eyes glance toward the right, and the eyebrows are
sharply arched. To make the doll correctly on its (provided) black
pedestal, the doll has holes in its feet, with metal cylinders within the holes. The bottom of the right foot is marked JAPAN.
The doll wears a black-and-white striped swimsuit, and wears black open-toed heeled shoes (also with holes), white sunglasses (with
blue lenses), and gold hoop earrings. The enclosed booklet has a pink cover showing only Barbie, no other characters.
The #2 Barbie is identical to the first, except that it has no holes (or metal cylinders) in the feet. The accompanying stand features
two arms that hold the doll upright.
The #3 Barbie is identical to the #2 doll, but with blue irises and softer-curving eyebrows. The eyeliner on this doll is either blue
or brown. It comes with the same accountrements as the previous two.
The #4 Barbie is nearly identical to the #3, but comes only with blue eyeliner. Note: The first 3 versions of Barbie were made with a
type of plastic that has largely turned white over time. The #4 is the first to be made with a newer plastic that does not tend to
fade as much.
The #5 Barbie comes in blonde, brunette, or (new) red, or titian, hair. Otherwise, it is identical to the #4. Some #5 dolls have
more substantially-textured hair, although this isn't true of all of them. The doll now comes with a new black wire stand, and the
enclosed booklet now also features Ken on the cover. The doll also comes in a newly-designed box (actually similar to the original,
but showing different outfits). Note: Some #5 Barbies over time have faces that appear 'greasy,' or overly shiny.
The #6 Barbie is identical to the #5, except that it comes with a red one-piece bathing suit.
(Note: Prices refer to dolls that dolls that have never been removed from their original packaging. The lid may have been removed
to show that all pieces are intact, but any dolls in lesser condition must be priced at a certain percentage of the price below, even
if the doll and package are in as-new condition, but the doll has been removed and/or played with.)
#1 Barbie - blonde: $6,000; brunette: $7,000.
#2 Barbie - blonde: $4,200; brunette: $4,800 (add $500.00 if hair is braided).
#3 Barbie - blonde: $1,000; brunette: $1,200.
#4 Barbie - blonde: $800; brunette: $850.
#5 Barbie - blonde or brunette, $650; red: $700.
#6 Barbie - any hair color, appx. $600.