Review: Positively Perfect Brianna

Positively Perfect dolls have a new look and are making the rounds at stores and online markets like Target, Walmart, and Amazon. Originally created by World of EPI, Funrise Toys has updated the dolls and the original message for girls of color that they are "smart and pretty" to now include Caucasian girls and to promote the philosophy that "standing out is totally in."

The word "Divah" also seems to have been dropped from the collection name, so that the dolls are now just "Positively Perfect." In addition, the collection also includes the 14.5" smaller dolls, which were previously part of a separate line.

World of EPI's original idea of "beauty in diversity" has been generalized for all girls who pride themselves in their uniqueness, such as having "crazy big hair" or wearing glasses. Meanwhile there is no longer a mention of being straight-A students or humanitarians like the original Divahs. ("DIVAH" stood for Dignified, Intelligent, Vivacious, Attractive and Humanitarian.)

The new Positively Perfect dolls are Brianna, Kennedy, Sofia, Emily, Chloe, and Taylor (no relation to the original Taylor). I picked up Brianna recently to get a better idea of the new dolls' changes.


The box art is new, with each doll's name clearly labeled on the front. The back also focuses on just the one doll, giving more information about her and her interests.

That was definitely not always the case with the original PPD dolls, which left some buyers searching the illustrations on the back of the box to try to match their doll to one of the graphics. Considering the hair and clothing was not always consistent, there was sometimes confusion as to which doll was which.

The inner packaging has also changed a bit. The doll now has to be snipped, clipped, or cut out of her cardboard backing--as opposed to the easy elastic band removal of the original packaging. I'm not a fan of zip ties.

Out of her binds at last, it looks like Brianna's got some major box-hair! Her big hair (don't care) needed a little fluffing up after she was freed from her backing.

With all the packaging gone, I can get a better look at her. She still has that adorable face that made her Positively Perfect Divah ancestors such standouts. But it's apparent she has a new style of face paint.


Here is Brianna with Divah Diana for comparison.


The feathered eyebrows of the original dolls have been replaced by thicker, darker, flat brows. The painted-on eyelashes are thicker and darker. The sunburst pattern of the iris looks more intense and less finely crafted than on the original dolls. I also noticed Brianna's right eye was a bit off center.
The once natural lip color is now heavily painted-on, shiny, and bright pink. Even the blush is bright pink and too pale for Brianna's skin tone. It sits noticeably over each cheek like two pink spots and does not blend in to the vinyl color.
I also noticed the box art shows Brianna with freckles. The actual doll has no freckles.

On the more positive side, I was really surprised to learn Brianna can actually stand up on her own! The original Positively Perfect dolls were fairly limp and needed a stand to get on their feet. Not this girl! It seems the newer dolls are more tightly stuffed than the older ones, which helps them stand and stay upright. That's kind of a plus.

On the downside, I don't care for the way her arms stick out at her sides as opposed to the more natural way the older dolls' arms fall at their sides. There may have been some changes to the cloth body around the shoulders, and the arms seem to have been put in with palms slightly facing backwards, perhaps to make the side seams on the vinyl less noticeable. (More about that later.)

Here is Brianna next to Taylor, Abrielle, and Diana of the original Positively Perfect Diva collection, for comparison.

One thing I can say in Brianna's favor is that I completely love her outfit! She's wearing a white, furry, satin-lined vest over a long sleeved light purple t-shirt with a cute kitty graphic. She has skinny stretchy metallic silver pants and silver vinyl shoes. She has a metallic hair band with a purple bow. The clothes are quality, well-made, and fit her well.


Now this is interesting. Brianna's cloth body has built in underwear! The cloth body is apparently sewn right in with permapanties, who would have guessed?

I can also see that the cloth body is slimmer than it used to be for the classic Positively Perfect Divahs, especially in the hips. It makes sense, since stuffing the older dolls more tightly so they could stand up sometimes resulted in them getting too wide around the middle to fit standard 18" clothes. Here is a comparison between the old and new cloth bodies.
Here is Brianna next to American Girl #26.
Under her head band, Brianna's rooted hair is pulled back from her face by two small locks twisted and "tied" at the top of her head.

Brianna's hair is actually super thick and super curly, and how cool, it's two-toned! This isn't something the original Positively Perfect dolls had going for them.
Her hair is really nice! It's full, much denser, and all around superior to the earlier Divahs' hair.
It's thicker and curlier than Taylor's, who has the curliest hair out of the original Divahs that I have. Admittedly, I don't know if Brianna's hair would be difficult to comb or keep from tangling. But as it is, I love it!

One thing to note about the new Positively Perfect dolls is that their vinyl has visible seam lines, whereas the earlier dolls didn't.

The seam lines aren't terribly noticeable and they can be easily ignored, but it is another slight drop in quality from the original dolls.
Like the original Divahs, Brianna has painted on earrings.
And unlike the original Divahs, Brianna can actually turn her head!


Despite some of her shortcomings, Brianna is still a very pretty doll! I generally nitpick over things like face paint and such, but others may find the new Positively Perfect dolls perfect just as they are.

Positively Perfect: Brianna, Emily, and Chloe


Daisy's picture

I wonder why they didn't switch to a more conventional body design. The 3/4 vinyl arms and legs really reduce poseability - I associate them more with baby dolls, rather than 18" dolls.W
Little Raven's picture

Wish they would.

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