THE GLAM SQUAD: Restoration Basics

Are you one those collectors who search for the most rare dolls in the most obscure places all over town? If you have the patience ( and if you are lucky!)to rummage over used toys and stuff, you will have a greater chance of finding these rare treasures! Most of the time though, you will find these poor beauties either in not so mint, or in a very bad condition. You can definitely tell that the previous owner maximized the allotted time for play!

Luckily for you, one of this blog’s mission is to help you discover the wonderful world of doll restoration. Bald spots all over? Re-rooting is the answer! Faded and horrendous face paint? Re-painting is the solution!  There are a million ways to restore a doll back to it’s former glory. Though the results may vary based on the condition of the doll, it wouldn’t hurt to help these ladies get a little touch up!

For this edition, we will learn how to properly clean and restore a doll with these simple and basic steps:

As you can see, this trio did suffer from a lot of hair play. Dirt has also accumulated which made the hair sticky…and quite nasty!

First things first! The stuff needed for the major overhaul!

Shampoo or a dish-washing liquid. You can use either of these. I prefer to use both. I use shampoo for minor hair problems. And I use the dish-washing liquid because it eliminates the gooey and the sticky stuff all over the hair. It is also very effective in removing the stains & other forms of dirt all over the body

An old toothbrush/ sponge. You can use either of these too. I use the sponge most of the time because I’m kinda worried that the toothbrush bristles will do some damage on the doll’s make up.

Hair conditioner & Fabric conditioner. Any brand will do. Remember, you are dealing with hair made out of plastic, not real, human hair.

Let warm water run all over the dolls. Make sure to remove any dirt and any tiny creatures living under those nasty hair. You will be surprised what’s hidden underneath! Eek!


Using either shampoo or dish-washing liquid, gently massage the hair using your thumb and index finger in a counter clockwise motion.

While on the process of cleaning the hair, you can start brushing/de-tangle it too using a regular Barbie brush. Start from the lower end/tips of the hair. This is very important! Start from the tips,then the middle, and lastly, the top part. This way, only a small amount of hair will be taken out.

You can now start cleaning the whole body using the sponge or a toothbrush. Use the brush to clean hard to remove stains. QUICK TIP: Use an apple cider vinegar to eliminate nasty stains and ink marks all over! Try it! It works!

Rinse thoroughly. Then soak the dolls in fabric conditioner diluted with water for about 30 minutes. Now this fabric conditioner part is actually optional, but I find it very effective so I made it a habit to do this with all of my dolls.

Now we’re on the home run!  After soaking the dolls in fabric conditioner, apply the hair conditioner and gently massage it to the doll’s hair. I applied generous amount of conditioner and I brushed it too to remove the extra,unwanted tangles. Leave for about 30 minutes.

Once the hair has been rinsed, you either blow-dry or air dry so you can start setting the hair.

And we’re on the fun part! The results!


“Tangerine Twist”, Doll outfit designed and created by Michael Bamba of Mike’s Creations. Instagram: @mikescreation
“Fiery in Red”. Doll outfit designed and created by Michael Bamba of Mike’s Creations. Instagram: @mikescreation
“Animal Instinct”. Faux leather jacket from Fashion Fever Teresa. Faux leather belt by Michael Bamba of Mike’s Creations. 80’s Barbie Party dress from Precious of Barbie dolls 4 sale.


The ladies are ready to party! Way to go, girls!!

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Welcome to the ultimate Barbie doll blog in the Philippines! The Barbie Collective Manila is a collaboration among Barbie enthusiasts, collectors, and creative minds. We will bring you exciting Barbie news, updates and wonderful features along the way. Feel free to join the ride and explore the wonderful world of Barbie!
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