As the mother of a six-year old daughter who wears princess dresses to Target to get paper towels on Saturday morning, I’ve always known that the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique (BBB) was in my future. If you are the parent of a child that also believes they cannot leave the house without a liberal sprinkling of glitter, this is about to be your jam!
The Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique is an experience where “Fairy Godmothers in Training” (FGIT) will give your child a magical makeover. There are two locations at Walt Disney World, inside Cinderella Castle in the Magic Kingdom and at Disney Springs, behind the Once Upon A Toy store in the Marketplace area.
Be aware that the BBB is a children’s makeover experience, not a real salon. The Fairy Godmothers don’t wash or cut hair; they only style it. And the make up and nail polish are non-toxic kiddie versions. You’re welcome to get your child a real haircut/style and manicure at one of the adult salons at WDW, but this is not that.
- The BBB is for children, ages 3-12. Any child may select any package regardless of their gender identification.
- Make a reservation! While you may be able to secure a same-day spot, it’s never guaranteed and is almost impossible during peak times. You can make reservations up to 180 days in advance by calling (407) 939-7895 or by booking online. Double check that you’re booking the correct location. Remember that reservations for the Magic Kingdom location do not include park admission.
The makeover packages vary from time to time. Occasionally they add special offerings related to a popular Disney film or television program. It’s always a good idea to verify pricing and package descriptions on the Disney website. The current offering include:
- The Crown Package (starts at $64.95 plus tax) – includes hairstyle, makeup, face gem, nail polish, princess sash, and cinch sack. NO GOWN OR TUTU INCLUDED.
- The Courtyard Package (starts at $109.95 plus tax) – includes hairstyle, makeup, face gem, nail polish, princess sash, and cinch sack. Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique t-shirt and “trendy” tutu are included with this package.
- The Castle Package (starts at $199.95 plus tax) – includes hairstyle, makeup, face gem, nail polish, princess sash, and cinch sack. Princess gown and coordinating accessory are included. Shoes are not part of this package.
- The Deluxe Castle Package (starts at $229.95 plus tax) – includes hairstyle, makeup, face gem, nail polish, princess sash, and cinch sack. Choice of deluxe Disney princess gown and a coordinating boxed accessory set are included. Shoes are not part of this package.
- The Princess Signature Dress Collection (starts at $450.00 plus tax) – includes hairstyle, makeup, face gem, nail polish, princess sash, and cinch sack. A choice of Disney princess gown “made with heirloom-quality fabrics” and extra details that tell the story of your princess is part of this package. Additionally, a crystal tiara, organza garment bag, and satin hanger make this package the ultimate extravagance.
- The Knight Package ($19.95 plus tax) – includes hairstyle with gel, sword and shield, and confetti.
- The Deluxe Knight Package ($79.95 plus tax) – includes a prince costume, hairstyle with gel, sword and shield, and confetti.
Guests are asked to bring their children to the BBB with clean hair, nails, and skin. There are a number of other items you’ll want to bring with you to your BBB visit:
- A change of clothes. This doesn’t include the outfit your child wore into the park. During the summer months, sweat and sunscreen will have everyone wanting to change every few hours.
- Gown and accessories if you aren’t purchasing a package that comes with a gown or tutu. (However, there’s no requirement that children wear a gown if they don’t want to. They can get the hair/nails/makeup without the clothing.)
- Baby wipes. While the makeup isn’t heavily pigmented and is usually applied with a light hand, it’s still on sensitive little faces that probably aren’t used to it. My daughter asked to remove the lipstick not long after we left and adult makeup removing wipes can be too harsh for young skin.
- Cash for a tip. The BBB is one of the few places on property that allow non-food-service cast members to accept a gratuity.
- Available memory on your phone and/or Disney’s Memory Maker. If you do not already have an annual pass that includes Memory Maker, you’ve probably purchased it on your own. If not, the $169.00 advance purchase price is a deal compared to what you’ll spend if you wait until the day of your BBB experience. All pictures at the boutique and the PhotoPass studio fall under the Memory Maker and won’t cost anything additional.
- Snacks and water. You don’t want to have your special, emotional, and expensive event marred by a meltdown. My six-year old still isn’t always reliable in self-identification of “hanger” so I’m never without snacks in my backpack.
- A hairbrush. The BBB uses combs to style the children’s hair. If your child has thick hair, or is sensitive and prefers brushes, you’ll need to bring your own.
There are several steps in your appointment timeline. At check-in, a cast member will greet you upon arrival, confirm your appointment, and direct you to the gown selection area (if you’re getting a package that includes a gown).
During gown selection you will be treated as the a second-class Anastasia or Drizella who happens to be carrying the wallet. Gown selection is large part of the magic of the experience. Your child is the absolute focus and star!
Your child, with input from you, will select a gown (typically from one of the standard Disney princesses) and hairstyle. There are currently 3 hairstyle choices available – the Fairytale Princess, the Disney Diva, and the Color Star. Children with short hair can receive clip-in colored hair strands, glitter, and gel.
Children change into their gowns before the hair and makeup part of the makeover. There is an area with several large dressing rooms, with padded privacy screens fancier than Cinderella’s. This is often where parents shed their first tear in the process of seeing their baby turned into a princess. The mirror in the dressing room is magic and will come to life as your cast member closes the door so your child can change. Try to avoid previewing this on YouTube so it’s a surprise for everyone. It’s way more special when it’s your baby experiencing the magic anyway.
If the gown your child selected doesn’t fit or isn’t comfortable, the cast member lingering outside your door can get a new size or even a whole new selection. I’ve seen it happen and it was treated as no big deal. They want your child happy! Once your child loves their ensemble, you will be escorted to the nearby register. It’s a dedicated register inside the boutique where they will go over every charge and item in the service you’re purchasing. Then, the makeover!
After your kiddo is fitted and kitted in her finery, she (or he) will be greeted by her appointed Fairy Godmother In Training. In my experience, the FGIT’s that my daughter has had have been as good, or better, at conversing with her than the princesses we’ve encountered at character meet and greets. The FGIT’s are high energy, kind, and have laser focus on your child. I cannot stress this part enough; these cast members are Disney magic. You’re paying a small fortune for this experience, but the way they treat your child will have you ready to book again before you leave. The gown and glitter are all wonderful but the conversation and truly royal treatment of your baby is what makes this experience so popular and totally worth the splurge.
During our visits, there have been several Disney PhotoPass Photographers in the Boutique. The know the makeover process well and are adept at capturing all the important moments. That said, you’re your child’s best stalker so snap away. Just be courteous to other guests and try to stay on the benches in the center of the room, rather than wandering and getting in other guests’ shots. The benches are positioned close enough to your child to carry on a conversation so don’t worry about getting good focus.
Each package is different and is subject to change at any time (check the Disney website for updates), but my daughter left her Castle Package Makeover with a ton of goodies. Her makeover came with a pink cinch bag, a sash, a silver-plated necklace with a charm of Cinderella’s carriage, the makeup pallet and nail polish her FGIT used on her, a makeup wipe sample package, a small bottle of shampoo, the purple comb (dinglehopper) used on her hair, and a sheet of unused face gems. She was also delighted to learn (as we discovered that evening before her shower) that she had lots of items on her head that she could re-use: the colored hair inserts, jeweled Mickey hair pins, thousands of plain hair pins (that’s how you’ll feel when you’re taking them out), and a fun hair donut that gives that princess volume she had all day.
Full disclosure: While I have been in the BBB location at Cinderella Castle in the Magic Kingdom, my family has always chosen to use the Disney Springs location. Both spots will to provide your kiddo with an experience to remember so use the information below to make the choice that’s best for your family.
- The Magic Kingdom. This location is smaller than the Disney Springs location and requires park admission. As of the date of this article, the Magic Kingdom location is under construction, but is open and functional. Other issues to consider are the travel time and effort to actually get to your appointment. On the plus side, any members of your party that aren’t going to be inside the Boutique can go on rides, watch shows, and eat; they have an entire park to amuse them. Also, THE CASTLE! Is there a better backdrop for your pictures?
- Disney Springs
- No park admission or parking fees
- Shorter commute to the glam chair! This is a much more significant detail in those summer months when you wake up to 84 degree Florida heat and humidity.
- The Parade: Each prince or princess leaving the boutique will be asked if they wish to participate in a parade with a few FGITs. Your child will hold on to a rope to keep them in a chain-like procession. The FGITs will teach them the proper wave (elbow, elbow, wrist, wrist, always smile, blow a kiss) and you can bet they’ll do a bit of improv depending on the royalty in their charge. Young siblings are encouraged to join the parade which slowly and loudly makes its way to the small Disney Springs carousel where your happy little ones can ride for free. The parade gives you another opportunity to take pictures and it’s a sure bet the other guests on the parade route will clap and cheer.
- The PhotoPass Studio: Disney Springs has a studio not far from the BBB. It’s located in the Marketplace district just close enough to Ghiradelli’s that you should plan on celebratory ice cream after your photo shoot! The PhotoPass Studio has several backdrops perfect for any prince or princess.
- World of Disney is just steps away. They have the largest princess shopping area I have ever seen. If you’re inclined, you can get shoes, wands, several versions of tiaras, themed jewelry, stuffed animals from the appointed movie, toys … the list of possible purchases you can make to enhance this experience is staggering.
Is the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique on your family’s must-do list? Have you taken your child to the BBB? Please share your questions and comments below.