How to Care For American Girl Doll Skin

Julia showed up last night with pen on her hands from playing upstairs.  We talked about how we don't draw on ourselves.  Never really found out why she's doing this.  She doesn't seem to know or share.

I'm not a fan of drawing on your skin.  I looked up several websites and found that many children (or most) draw on themselves.  Some parents don't mind at all - after all, most pens aren't toxic or harmful.  Some parents don't like it.  I'm in the latter category.  It's messy, looks awful and tends to lead to drawing other places like dolls.

As I was putting Julia to bed, I saw that her doll Isabelle was lying in the bin with her clothes and that she'd changed her outfit.  I said "Oh fun Julia!  You.... (gasp!!!)"  Julia's reaction was immediately with loud crying and big alligator tears "I'm sorry Mommy."  The gasp was my reaction to seeing the arms and face of her doll covered in ink markings.  I truly should have taken a picture of it.

I realize that it's a doll.  It's not a person and there are many other things in life that matter more.  However, we don't go out and frivolously spend $120 on a single doll and then not take care of it.  Yes, Julia is only four.  These things are bound to happen and be experimented with.  Thankfully, I was able to find a solution on the AG doll site and fixed it with only a very faint line on her forehead left.  You'd have to really be looking for it to find it.  So thankful to not have to send it to the AG Doll Hospital and pay an extra $40 just to have it fixed.

There were several ways to clean the doll, but more ways to NOT clean the doll.  Her skin is made from a special vinyl that soaks up colors from markers, inks and fabrics.  Her eyes are not to get wet as they can rust.  Her hair is also special and shouldn't get anything but spritzed water on it.  The doll can not be submerged in water, but I think that's without saying anyway.

Here is what I did and it worked.  Though the website says it might not.  It took out the pen and with some scrubbing, all is back to normal.

How to care for your doll

Skin Care Video - scroll through the video options to find "Doll Skin Care Video."  I followed the steps and made a baking soda/warm water mix that was thick like toothpaste.  Though I didn't measure it out.  I simply poured baking soda in a dish and then added warm water until it was thick.  I then used a white wash cloth to rub in teeny tiny circles around the pen.  I scrubbed fairly hard in some places.  And covered the hair and eyes with portions of another cloth as I went around.  It took some time (15-20 minutes), but all was fixed.

So far today Julia hasn't drawn on anything except paper.  She sure keeps us on our toes!


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