BJD stands for "Ball Jointed Doll." Ball Jointed Dolls are handmade, collectible dolls made of resin that come from Asian countries including South Korea, China, and Japan. Some of the details include blushed skin, scars, dimples, wrinkles and much more. But not all dolls have these characteristics.
Resin is a translucent material similar to plastic or porcelain that comes in different colors - normal and fantasy pigments. Normal skin is the fleshy tone of a white male, good white is the same shade as a person with lighter skin, and tan/real red/peachy skin has the same hue as a tan-skinned individual. Some companies sell dolls made of darker resin to resemble darker complexions, but this depends on who makes them.
There are standard BJDs and Fantasy BJDS. Typical BJD dolls have a grey, blue, or green face, dresses in a pink or red dress, has rooted hair and porcelain-looking skin. Some companies only make Fantasy dolls that have blue or green skin, while others make all of the different types of skins and hair options. It depends on the company as some don't make all of the various resin types above because resin is difficult to work with and fragile; it's tough but not indestructible. If you drop your doll from a lower height onto a softer surface, it should be okay; if you drop your doll from a higher place or onto a more rigid surface (i.e. concrete), however, the resin will chip or crack depending.
There are many different types of toys made in Asia. Obviously, as there's such a large number of Asian toy companies, each company has its own type or dolls. Most are labeled by height - Yo-Sd, MSD, and SD (remember that there are many more specific names for particular doll sizes depending on the mold and the company). BJDs measures size in centimeters and range in height from 9.7 cm to 70 cm. The shortest BJDs sold (which I know about) are just over 3 1/2 inches tall, while the tallest ones can be 27 inches tall.
Dolls are made from various sizes, depending on the age it is meant to represent. A 70cm doll is meant for an adult, typically age 40+. An SD (57-65 cm) doll is for a young adult, between the ages of 17-25. A MSD (40-50 cm) doll is for your preteens, usually between the ages of 13-16. Yo-SDs (35 cm and below) are for your little kids, ages 8-12; any younger than that and they're not selling any dolls. It's all up to you what age your dolls will be. However, even if they're categorized as a certain age by their company, BJD owners can change their dolls' appearance because they normally don't fall under a specific classification by society.
BJDs are completely customizable, meaning that you can change every little detail about them. When you receive your BJD, he or she will be naked. How you dress your doll is entirely up to you. You can change the wig, eyes, clothes, shoes and even body parts of your doll - including gender. If you want to set your doll apart from the rest and have them have green hair with brown eyes instead of brunette hair with blue eyes like the majority of people do, order it!
Doll faces differ depending on their "face-up". A face-up is the realistic detail on a doll's face, and both males and females have them. Dolls can be "customized" with a variety of different looks, from small details like eyebrows to completely reinventing the entire look of the doll. (For example, you might want your female doll to have more emphasized wrinkles or less defined lips.) Each company offers a set set of eyes and eyelashes in their head, but it may not be the exact face-up you were looking for. For example, if you buy a doll and it doesn't come with freckles but you want them on your doll, there are several options:
* Ask the company to include them as an option
* Customize the look yourself by using your own makeup or contact lenses
* Send it off to a professional who is skilled in creating customized dolls
A doll's versatility means that it can be a character from popular media, or a character representational of the owner's persona. BJD doll owners often create their own world through their dolls, and many are writers or comic book artists. A doll is only "alive" when its owner breathes life into it, and that is the role we play in place of the artist/owner.