Toni Dolls from Ideal (1949)

Ideal’s Toni Dolls made their debut in 1949 with a design feature that was unique from other dolls being sold at the time.

Each doll came with a sturdy and washable wig — which Ideal referred to as “magic nylon hair” in its advertising — and specially designed hairdressing accessories. The idea was that a child could learn the basics of hairstyling by washing, combing, and even perming their Tony doll’s hair.

The Toni Dolls line was inspired by the Toni Home Permanent, a line of kits popular in the 1950s that allowed adults to give themselves permanent waves in the comfort of their own homes. Toni dolls came in various sizes from 14-inches to 23-inches tall, and a wide range of hair colours and outfits.

Despite being discontinued in the 1950s, Toni Dolls continue to be cherished collectibles today by doll collectors of all ages.