Which Barbie mermaid doll is best?

If your child loves Barbie dolls or mermaids, chances are they will love a Barbie mermaid doll. With all the Barbie mermaid movies released over the last decade, there are more Barbie mermaid dolls and accessories to choose from than ever. The Barbie Color Reveal Mermaid Dolls are the best, a series of seven colorful mystery dolls that change in the water. 

What to know before you buy a Barbie mermaid doll


Each Barbie doll has a name and style, and the mermaid dolls are no exception. Some of the Barbie mermaids are reimagined spins on classic characters such as Barbie, Ken or Chelsea, though they come in several styles with assorted hair colors. Others are based on looks from the TV series “Barbie: Dreamtopia” or from Barbie films including “Barbie Fairytopia: Mermaidia” (2006), “Barbie in A Mermaid Tale” (2010) and “Barbie Mermaid Power” (2022).


The standard Barbie doll is 12 inches tall and the standard Chelsea doll is 6 inches tall. With a fin instead of feet, a mermaid doll is usually a little bigger and can be up to 14 inches tall Barbie-sized or 6.5 inches tall Chelsea-sized.  


Barbie dolls can come with soft hair or hard plastic hair. Soft hair is designed to feel more like real hair, but some wavy and curly styles can frizz afterward if submerged in water. Hard plastic hair never loses its style and is easier to dry, but cannot be braided or combed. Usually, short hair is plastic while anything chin-length or longer is soft and can be brushed. 

What to look for in a quality Barbie mermaid doll

Like-magic features 

Barbie mermaid’s come with fun, colorful features that look like magic. This can mean blinking lights that sparkle in the water, or skin, hair or clothes that change color when they comes into contact with water.


Barbie mermaid dolls are designed to be completely or partially submergible in water. Most of their play features are based on using water, making Barbie mermaids well suited to bathtub play.  

Extra accessories

Some Barbie mermaid dolls come with extra accessories, such as pets, jewelry, a hairbrush or extra fins in different colors.

A few of the Chelsea mermaid dolls take this a step further and come with a full playset. This can include seashell accessories, pets, pet gear, coral reef hideouts, playground castles or outfit changes. 

Mystery boxes

These days, lots of toys come as “collect them all” surprises where you don’t know what’s in the box until you open it. Barbie does this with the Color Reveal series. In the box is one of several possible dolls, each of which has a different style and color scheme.

Unlike other Barbie toys, there is no way to know which doll you’ll get until you open the box. The Barbie Color Reveal series features seven possible dolls and the Chelsea Cover Reveal series features five possible dolls.

How much you can expect to spend on a Barbie mermaid doll

A single doll costs $12 to $30 and can go as high as $40 if it is new or hard to find. A mermaid doll that comes with a playset or extra accessories costs $20 to $30.

Barbie mermaid doll FAQ

How old should a child be to play with a Barbie mermaid doll?

A. These dolls are designed for anyone over 3 years old as they come with small pieces that can pose choking hazards for infants.

Do Barbie mermaid dolls have feet or just a fin? 

A. Most of the mermaid dolls come with a fin and do not convert into a doll with feet. Two of the few exceptions are the Barbie Mermaid Power Skipper Doll and the Barbie Dreamtopia 2-in-1 Princess to Mermaid. Both come with a cloth pull-on fin that fits over the legs.

What’s the best Barbie mermaid doll to buy?

Top Barbie mermaid doll

Barbie Color Reveal Mermaid Doll

Barbie Color Reveal Mermaid Doll

What you need to know: Inside the mystery box is one of seven possible 12.7-inch doll with seven surprise features.

What you’ll love: The doll comes with a mermaid tail, comb, wrist cuffs and crown. It changes color in the water tube while turning the water sea blue. Each is different so they are fun to collect. The tube doubles as a storage container.

What you should consider: The body is waterproof but the hair shouldn’t get wet. There is only one merman style and it is rarer than the other dolls.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon 

Top Barbie mermaid doll for the money

Barbie Dreamtopia Rainbow Magic Mermaid

Barbie Dreamtopia Rainbow Magic Mermaid

What you need to know: This “Barbie: Dreamtopia” doll is covered in a rainbow print and changes color in water.

What you’ll love: The doll has a cute tiara and bodice that match its pink, blue and yellow hair. The fin has a rainbow design with a large, elegant fin. The colors turn pastel in cold water and neon in warm water. The doll bends at the waist to sit.

What you should consider: It doesn’t come with additional accessories.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Barbie Dreamtopia Merman Doll

Barbie Dreamtopia Merman Doll

What you need to know: This “Barbie: Dreamtopia” merman doll has a starry rainbow tail and hard plastic blond hair. 

What you’ll love: It’s one of the few Barbie merman dolls. It comes with a seashell necklace and textured wrist cuffs. It’s durable, waterproof and bends at the waist.

What you should consider: It only comes in one skin tone with one hair color. There are no color-changing features.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

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Emily Verona writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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