The Worst Tooth Fairy You Will Ever See.

The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood discovered what may be the worst new toy of the year: The Real Tooth Fairies, an “immersive” Tooth Fairy experience that seeks to turn the simple act of leaving a tooth under one’s pillow into a world full of licensed products available for purchase!

To fully enjoy trading a tooth for money, your daughter will require a special treasure chest, outfit, purse, and book set!

Losing a tooth is not a gender-neutral activity. The Real Tooth Fairies company has separate websites for boys and girls. Here is the girl version:

A bunch of pretty princesses stand under text reading "tooth fairy"

And here is the totally badass boy version:

So much is unnecessary here: The time traveling, the spelling of “elf” with two Fs, the transformation of the Tooth Fairy into–depending on your gender–a gaggle of babes in heels or a chipper boy band.

The Campaign for Commercial Free Childhood found and posted a marketing video the Real Tooth Fairies company made for investors that noted the giant market potential of turning the beloved childhood icon into a line toys and outfits. I watched the video last week but, unfortunately, the video is no longer available online “due to a copyright claim from the ‘Royal Council of the Real Fairyland.’”

Oh shit, you know you’re in trouble when you piss off the Royal Council of the Real Fairyland.

Anyway, there is a transcript of the marketing video. Here’s a segment:

Can you believe that a childhood character known by millions worldwide has not yet been licensed? Every night, millions of children around the world put a lost tooth under their pillow and wait for the Tooth Fairy to come.

Yes-s-s! It’s another letter from my Real Tooth Fairy! … Wait a minute. I need to go show my mom. MOM!

What if this moment of real-life magic that kids and parents already buy into could be captured into a Tooth Fairy brand that girls love?

[captioned: Executive VP, Disney Interactive, 1991 – 2011, Took Disney Online to 36 Million Uniques; Acquired Club Penguin $700 million; Built successful Disney Fairies Site]
This is a huge, huge property and a huge character franchise, and the genius of it is no one’s really tapped into it the way The Real Tooth Fairies has. We could come up with a list of time-tested characters, from Spiderman to Mickey Mouse to Tinkerbell to Spongebob, and I believe the tooth fairy, herself, as a character, literally stands at the same level of these kind of globally-recognizable characters.

In addition to the obvious notion that commercializing every aspect of a childhood promotes an unhealthy consumerism, the makeover of the vaguely defined Tooth Fairy into a group of skinny, sexy fairies is in line with other depressing toys aimed at girls. In recent years, Strawberry Shortcake and the Care Bears have both been revamped to become skinnier and more sensual.

The people behind the Real Tooth Fairies had better start saving the dimes under their kids’ pillows–hopefully no one with any sense will invest in this scheme.


by Sarah Mirk
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Sarah Mirk is the former host of Bitch Media’s podcast Popaganda. She’s interested in gender, history, comics, and talking to strangers. You can follow her on Twitter

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9 Comments Have Been Posted

Pfft on that mess.

I use a velvet-lined, pewter box with semi-precious gems. Because it was a quarter at goodwill. I kind of felt like I'd won everything when I found it. I told the girls the tooth fairy is far too busy to hunt teeth so if they aren't in the box, they're skipped. It's so convenient. If we saw this at a store I would tell her they were con artists who are trying to steal the real tooth fairy's identity. You can't beat a good identity theft life lesson.

You win

That comment was awesome - I am totally going to teach my kids about identity theft whenever someone tries to dress up as the tooth fairy, Santa, the Easter bunny, or any number of Disney characters. As a kid I was terrified of anyone in a life-sized suit anyway, it would have been so helpful to have an excuse not to go near them...

How Dare They!

They don't know what kind of magic they're messing with! Plus, the "Real" Tooth Fairies look suspiciously like Barbie dolls dresses up for Halloween.

We want gender-neutral but "boy toys" are still praised...

Yes I agree that the sexualization of "girl toys" is just SO wrong on so many levels. BUT reading the comparisons was still kind of sad, because even among a feminist space such as this, "boy toys" are still considered "badass" compared to "girl toys". Once again more so-called "masculine" looking items are considered better or cooler than "feminine" items. It would be really cool if one day "girl toys" were seen as awesome, and that young boys envied them, or something like that.

I think that "badass" was

I think that "badass" was tongue-in-cheek, Sammi ... hard to believe the author would sincerely call it badass just before comparing it to a boy band... :)

And the day that boys envy girl toys is already upon us! Boys DO reach for toys intended for girls, but they get redirected by their parents or their peers, so subtly that it appears we're looking at natural preferences. Same for clothes, behavior, play styles, etc.

Yep, I was joking.

That "badass" was sarcastic. Though if someone wants to put together a real-life boy band of "time-traveling elffs," I would be pretty impressed.

Tooth fairy

What is not included in this totally biased article is where this originated. I took my daughter to the dentist (of whom she has always been terrified) and the entire staff told her how they were one of the "tooth fairies" dentist and showed her the website, helped her make a log on (at no cost, and with my supervision), helped her pick a tooth fairy and write a short note to her telling her who her new dentist was and that she was nervous and did"Stacey" (her new fairy) had any suggestions for her to feel better. Then the hygienist and dentist went about my daughter's visit and my daughter was almost a different child. She was no longer scared or nervous, she was thrilled she had a "tooth fairy dentist" and chattered non-stop about all things tooth fairy. The entire staff was amazing and endlessly answered her every question. The extra time and new concept that every member of the office took made such a huge difference that now my normally terrified to the point of having to be sedated child looks forward to her check ups, brushed, flosses, and swishes religiously as to not disappoint the dentist or her tooth-fairy. That night I received an email showing me what my daughter had written and included a .pdf attachment that was a beautiful personalized letter from her new tooth fairy saying how proud she was of her on her new visits, how well she did, how excited her new fairy was to have her as an "earthie friend" and how she can login and talk to her anytime. It did not cost me one single penny. Later I did pay 7.00 to have her be ale to write her fairy (about any number of topics from, something great happened at a school, I have a lost tooth, or someone was mean to me, etc) and to get a personalized response back. I like it bc they always email what she wrote and the returning letter to me so it gives me some insight on what she is thinking when sometimes she isn't ready to share, and I can chose whether or not to slip the letter under her pillow. They do have merchandise you can buy but it is not necessary. They have an interactive site where they can play games, decorate avatars and rooms, clothes, etc. and also where they can work on a project to do kind acts (like take cookies to a neighbor, the fire department, help around the house, etc.). Sometimes I even write to my daughter as her fairy to impart something special and include little "fairy trinkets" like pretty glass stones, new earrings, note pads, etc. and doing that doesn't cost anything except my time. My daughter is very into fairies so while she is enjoying it, I do not see the harm. It's not like I wouldn't end up buying her some sort of fairy toy at the store anyway, and I LOVE AND APPRECIATE her change in attitude towards dentist visits, and I like the message of kindness which is in line with what I teach at home.

Nice website plug...

As a parent, you are a tart! You can't parent your own child to understand about dentists and losing teeth without a silly website? Last I recall, I didn't have a silly website when I was growing up.

Nice plug for the site but all you are demonstrating is your inability to parent your own child. You state in your response, "where this originated". Obviously, this response is not from Kathleen, right Marilyn?


I believe the tooth fairy, herself, as a character, literally stands at the same level