A New British Documentary Goes Inside The Lives Of Men Who Dress As Dolls

“Secrets of the Living Dolls” is a new documentary series on Britain’s Channel 4 that follows men who dress as dolls in a phenomenon called “masking.”

Some have spent nearly £10,000 (over $US16,000) on latex female body suits, masks with permanent makeup, wigs, and other accessories.

Joel, a 28-year old bartender from Essex, explained in the documentary’s first episode that he feels a sense of escapism while masking since he is able to let out his inner persona. “Dominique,” another masker from the Bronx, also noted feeling more comfortable when she was dressed as a doll.

“When I walk into a place, they see a large black man and think automatically, ‘He’s going to rob me’,” Dominique said in the first episode. “Whereas as a female they’re like, ‘Oh, she’s really sexy, she’s really cute, she’s really curvy.’ I notice that when I’m a sexy female, I get treated completely differently.”

Masking has become its own phenomenon, with a special social network called Doll’s Pride and an annual convention in Minnesota known as Rubber Doll World Rendezvous.

When the first episode of “Secrets of the Living Dolls” premiered last night in the U.K., an impressive 2.4 million Brits tuned in, according to Digital Spy.

The series is getting a lot of press on the other side of the pond as well. And though American viewers are not able to watch it on TV or online yet, they can get a taste of the show from various clips Channel 4 has posted on its YouTube channel.

Secrets of the Living Dolls highlights
Femskin, a family-run company in Florida that developed an ultra-light wearable female body-suit for “maskers.”

Men slip into the suits like so:

And then add a mask with the makeup of their choice.

Once dressed, the body suit moves naturally, with only the face remaining frozen like a doll’s. The lips of the mask don’t move, but there’s enough of an opening not to impede speech or breathing.

Some of the maskers opt to only wear the doll mask and get saline injections to temporarily develop natural-looking female breasts.

When they’re all dressed up, it’s not uncommon for maskers to go out on the town together.

Or they just go about their daily routines.

“Secrets of the Living Dolls” found maskers from all over the world, from the USA and UK to Russia and Japan.

You can watch full clips at Channel 4’s YouTube page, or go to the documentary’s website to learn more.

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