* Prices may differ from that shown
Like most young girls, my daughter loves Disney Princesses. She received a Disney Princess Sparkle Doll on her last birthday. There's a whole range of Disney Princess Sparkle Dolls but the princess my daughter received was Belle (from Beauty & The Beast). The Disney Princess Sparkle Dolls are made by well known toy manufacturers Mattel.
Belle came packaged in a long plastic box with cardboard backing and is suitable for children 3+ years. She is about the size of an average Barbie doll (about 10 inches tall), has brown curly hair (just below the shoulders), wears a yellow silky skirt (with glittery lace over the top part), a glittery corset-style top (with small pink flowers at the top), a pink tiara and red glittery shoes. The doll is a good size and is very pretty. However I can't honestly say she looks anything like Belle (my daughter was also quick to point this out!). Belle is best known for her big yellow ball gown that she wears in the film, so you can guess that the doll is her and not a different princess, but the dress isn't anything like you would expect Belle to wear. She also wears red shoes and a Tiara which Belle has never worn. The doll has a pretty face but again, not really Belle-like (it could be anybody). However I don't think any of my daughters dolls faces look like who they're supposed to be!
My daughter loves to undress and dress her dolls. She was slightly disappointed to learn that only the skirt can be removed. The top is made from plastic and is moulded on to the doll. The top and lace overlay on the skirt is full of glitter and really gives Belle a good sparkle and a blinging boost in to the 21st century! The shoes and tiara were actually lost after a week or two. The tiara would have probably been better if it was stitched on to her head like some of my daughters other dolls. The brown curly hair looks nice (a bit 'poofy' and not really like Belle's though!) and I find it doesn't get matted like a lot of my daughters dolls with long straight hair. The hair doesn't require much upkeep but my daughter does like to run a little brush through it now and again. The doll is great for imaginative play, my daughter will happily play by herself with her dolls for hours and this one is no exception. The doll doesn't stand up independently but her arms and legs can be moved backwards and forwards. Her head also moves from side to side and can be turned left and right. The doll seems like good quality, all arms and legs are still intact and the dress hasn't yet snagged...
The doll comes with no extras. Most dolls come with a brush or a pet, but this doll comes just as it is. The Disney Princess Sparkle Belle Doll is widely available and can be found at most toy shops and supermarkets. The doll can vary in price but generally costs between £8.00 - £12.00. I personally wouldn't want to spend more than £10.00 on it. This isn't the best doll that I've seen (my favourite Disney Princess dolls at the moment are the Disney Princess Animator Toddler dolls sold in The Disney Store, although they are VERY different to these Barbie-type dolls) but it's not bad either and I'm sure most little girls will love it!
I bought five year old Hollie a spur of the moment pressie the other day; she'd had a fabulous school report and I was bursting with pride, so I treated her to a couple of Disney Princess dolls from a range I hadn't seen before. The 'Sparkling Princess' range has all your favourite Disney Princesses with a twist - they've all been contestants on Pimp my Dress and their frocks have added bling in the form of glitter and tiny jewels attached to the fabric. I bought Hollie Belle from Beauty and the Beast (her ultimate favourite Princess) and Cinderella - surprisingly Cinderella has been her favourite of the two dolls, for a very good reason which will become apparent as you read on.
Belle is a dark haired doll, slightly smaller than Barbie but not to the point where you'd notice unless you had the two dolls standing side by side. She has much the same proportions with never-ending legs, long slim arms and tiny waspish waist but doesn't appear as sexually charged as your average Barbie or Bratz doll. She has a beautiful face; very sweet looking with the modest and almost shy look that Belle displays in Beauty and the Beast, her long dark hair is incredibly shiny and beautifully swept back off her face to in a neat and tidy fashion - it has been styled to create a natural indent so that her tiara can clasp the sides of her head and sit straight without wobbling or falling off.
Belle's dress is absolutely beautiful; it's slightly different to the one you can see above with the top layered section of skirt being a pink mesh, and the shoulders having the same mesh finish rather than the more recognisable yellow puffiness with rose embellishment at the breast. The skirt and bodice of the dress are much more slinky than I'd usually expect to see Belle wearing, it's decorated with a thick spiral of glitter which winds around the dress from the hem to the neckline. It's absolutely stunningly done, the glitter is sparkly enough to gleam and shimmer when it catches the light - the name Sparkling Princesses is certainly true in this case as every time Hollie moves the doll you can catch a glint of sparkle.
But we have an issue. It was Hollie herself who noticed it, which to me just shows how small kiddies spot things that maybe we adults miss. The problem being that without her trademark ruffled yellow dress this could be ANY Barbie-type doll, this Princess is easily recognisable when wearing her usual dress but without it she just doesn't look particularly like Belle. Her heeled glittery red shoes are also confusing for little Belle lovers as Belle is usually found in flat Ballerina style shoes, again this is something Hollie noticed but after comparing this doll to other Belles in her collection I can see she's spot on once again! Anyway, the shoes are surprisingly ill fitting so are rarely used anyway as I'm worried about little David putting them in his mouth - Belle is now rocking the sparkly dress with wellies look.
Aside from the recognition issue, I'm happy with my purchase of this Sparkling Princess Belle. She's superb quality and oh-so pretty, her arms and legs move to a degree and while they don't bend at the joints you can spin her limbs around to coax her into splay-legged sitting position and arrange her nicely to play with the other dolls Hollie has of this type. Belle's head will also move from side to side, although I find her neck joint very stiff in comparison to Hollie's other dolls so she tends to be looking forward at all times during play. Her hair is easy to keep tidy and despite lots of brushing and 'styling' by Hollie it hasn't become ratty or messed up, whenever it gets knotted I just dab a little conditioner onto the problem area and brush it out again - this keeps her hair sleek and smooth with no irritating lumps or bumps to spoil the pristine look of the doll.
I paid £12 for this Sparkling Princesses doll, which I think is excellent value considering the quality and unique design - admittedly it would be better again if they had embellished Belle's official dress (the one we all know and love) rather than giving her a completely new one but they must have done this for a reason, although I can't imagine what this reason could have been unless they happened to find thousands of tiny yellow dresses that needed using up at the back of a Disney warehouse somewhere!
At a Glance The beloved princesses from the Disney fairy tales are dressed in beautiful ball gowns, complete with a glittery swirl sprinkled with icons unique to each story Features and benefits for Disney Princess Sparkle Belle Doll The beloved princesses from the Disney fairy tales are dressed in beautiful ball gowns, complete with a glittery swirl sprinkled with icons unique to each story.Belle wears a one-of-a-kind dress in her signature colour. Doll cannot stand alone.Not suitable for children under 36 months due to small parts.