Stats: Life in Plastic with “Quarantine Barbie” creator Tonya Ruiz

This Cypress grandmother went viral after creating her own “Quarantine Barbie” sets.
Tonya Ruiz Quarantine Barbie Profile Orange Coast Magazine
Tonya Ruiz and her Quarantine Barbies

Photo by Emily J. Davis.

Tonya Ruiz started her Instagram account, Grandma Gets Real, as a way to bond with her granddaughters and post funny photos of her Barbie collection. She was surprised when her homemade parody “Quarantine Barbie” sets, complete with miniature props depicting the realities of staying at home—botched haircuts, baking disasters, online shopping, binge watching—gained a massive following. She has since appeared in national publications as well as on “The Kelly Clarkson Show.” “I felt I was on ‘Punk’d’ because I kept asking myself if this was a prank,” Ruiz says. “Being on the show introduced me to a wider audience, and knowing I’m reaching people such as Kelly Clarkson was awesome.”

21 / Quarantine Barbie sets she has made

153,000 / Number of Instagram followers she has (and growing fast)

300+ / Dolls in her collection

100 / Number of plastic shoe boxes she uses to store tiny accessories

24 / Props included in her “Pandemic Hero Grocery Worker” Barbie set

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