Ken Day

Ken Day is observed next on Thursday, March 13th, 2025 (265 days from today).

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Ken Day is celebrated on March 13 every year to commemorate the first appearance of Barbie's longtime boyfriend, Ken Carson, introduced by Mattel at a toy fair in 1961. Four days ago, we celebrated National Barbie Day (the introduction of Barbie in 1959), and today we celebrate the day we introduced her friend in 1961. Ken is Barbie's boyfriend and the like Barbie, he is forever young and constantly recreated. Ken is famous for many various outfits in his dream house, and popular outfits include disco outfits and bedroom outfits.

History of Ken Day

There is some difference as to whether the Ken doll came out on Saturday, March 11, 1961, or Monday, March 13, 1961. Mattel, Barbie's maker, claims March 11, but most other sites assume it's March. 13, and that's why Ken Day was celebrated at that time. Ken released at the American International Toy Fair in New York City. Barbie debuted two years earlier at the same fair.

Ken is named after Ken Handler, the son of Ruth and Elliot Handler. Ruth and Elliot were the founders of Mattel, and it was Ruth who was the inventor of the Barbie Doll. Barbie is named after Handler's daughter Barbara. Ken Handler passed away in 1994.

The original Ken doll comes with red swimming trunks, sandals, and a yellow scarf and can be purchased for $3.50 - about $29.00 in 2018. He can be purchased with a roof blond or brown hair. The dolls initially had the feel of hair (or "floating"), but since it sheds when wet, these dolls were quickly changed to have plastic-molded hair. A hairstyle that started debuting in 1973. Ken’s height is 12 inches, and he is taller than Barbie half an inch. Until 1977, Ken had straight arms that could not be bent and his head could only go left and right. Superstar Ken was later released - he had flexible arms, a rotatable head, a more muscular body and molded underwear. Throughout the years, Ken's style of clothing has reflected the fashions of the time. The first African-American Ken doll, published in 1981, was the model for the Sunsational Malibu Ken doll. The Earring Magic Ken doll was released in 1993 and was an important hit among gay men. It was discontinued, but not before becoming the best-selling Ken doll of all time. The Sugar Daddy Ken doll with a suggestive and more mature-looking name was released in 2010. Mattel claims that the doll's dog's name is Sugar and that's why the doll got its name. He’s Sugar's father. A refurbished Ken doll designed by stylist Phillip Bloch and released in 2006.

Ken met Barbie at a television commercial in 1961. Like Barbie, he is from Wisconsin. Ken has had more than 40 careers over the years, such as a businessman, Olympic athlete, pilot and actor. He even appeared in Toy Story 3. Ken and Barbie were never married, but they have stayed together for most of their existence. They broke up since the 1960s, and according to Mattel, they broke up on Valentine's Day in 2004 but continued to be friends. Barbie dated Blaine Gordon but she was pursued again by Ken, and they got back together on Valentine's Day 2011 — the year of their 50th wedding anniversary.

How to celebrate Ken Day

Ken Day is perhaps best celebrated with a healthy date night or beach barbecue, a big bang, and some polyester leisure clothing. If you don't feel like imitating Ken in your everyday wear, then you just need to take a moment to appreciate the girl or boy of your dreams. Take them out and buy them beautiful things, dress their best, and if you're feeling a little creative and amused, you can even host a full evening dedicated to the Ken and Barbie era call home. Go out all friends!


Ken Day has been observed annually on March 13th.


Monday, March 13th, 2023

Wednesday, March 13th, 2024

Thursday, March 13th, 2025

Friday, March 13th, 2026

Saturday, March 13th, 2027



Also on Thursday, March 13th, 2025

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