We are nearing the release of Frozen 2 in theaters, and with the release comes the inevitable deluge of merchandise. This year, they're better than ever, with a bit of vintage flair seasoning the choices. My favorite toys are the new Frozen 2 hair braiding toys, which come complete with a machine operated braiding hair spinner.
Hasbro has channeled the 1990s and designed Anna and Elsa dolls with extra long hair to be brushed, styled, and braided with the assistance of a spinning braid tool. They are a ton of fun to play with, but be forewarned: do not, I repeat, do not let your children try to braid their own hair with it. As someone who had to have a spin and style cut out of their hair at the root, I will tell you that the resulting grow-back period is not worth it. However, it does work really well on synthetic doll hair, and since Elsa's braids are pretty much her signature, I am sure these are going to be a huge hit with kids this holiday season. They definitely feel like the type of toy to sell out fast and have scrambling parents scurrying off to eBay to try and find a few.
In a press release, HASBRO noted that there are no batteries required for this little braider, so I'm not sure how it is powered, but it will still get a workout. They also noted that it comes with six elastics, two hair accessories, and a comb to provide hours of endless entertainment.
Over the past few years, I have become a bit of a doll pro. These two dolls are definitely going to be added to my daughter's collection, with the full knowledge that at some point, I'm going to have to restore their hair. It will need detangled, defrizzed, and separated. Thankfully, it's pretty easy to do.
Once your child's Anna and Elsa doll's hair becomes a matted mess, just take a spray bottle, and fill it with half warm water and half fabric softener. I prefer Downy, as it seems to work and smell the best. Shake it up, and then saturate the hair completely. (Incidentally, this also works for American Girl and Our Generation dolls, as well as synthetic wigs for Halloween.) Using a steel, wide tooth grooming comb, comb out the hair. When it's completely mat free, rinse with cool water, and twist into three or four twists to dry.
I am also really excited about the outfits that the dolls are wearing. A sharp turn from the first film, Anna is featured in stark black, with burnt umber accents. Elsa is in her signature blue, but it is softer — less "Ice Queen" and more "Fan of Winter and Probably Eggnog." It's such a switch for the two. Anna spent the first film in bright colors and cheery goodness, and Elsa was fully serving spun glass Disney villain realness.
What is happening with Anna that she is now in head-to-toe black? Is she in mourning? Is she finally going through her goth phase now that she doesn't need to bring hope and cheer to the kingdom as a foil for her freeze-happy sibling? Who knows, but it does point to a potential plot line that I don't know if I am comfortable with, but am excited for nonetheless.
Regardless, you know that your kids (and you) will be singing the songs for several months to come, and why not do that as you play with Anna and Elsa's hair? It's bound to be a good time for everyone involved.