BRUSH 'n' GROW PONIES
The Brush 'N' Grow Ponies were one of the few 1988 sets that saw a complete and unaltered release in the United Kingdom - although there were differences between this line and the group sold in North America. The key difference was in the pony "Twisty Tail", who had a different pose in North America - more can be found on this by visiting her page.
Designed as the ultimate hair care ponies, each Brush N Grow had a long silky mane and a tail which was approximately three times the usual pony tail length when fully extended. The trick was that, by turning the pony's head, you could make the tail wind into her body - so Brush N Grows were the first ponies to feature intentionally turning heads. The tail would generally feed in so far as to give you a normal length pony tail...then, by pulling on the tail, it could be restored to it's original length. The UK comic interpreted this in a particular way - that the tails would grow when the pony was happy!
I suppose it's a bit of a no-brainer to realise that this hair-orientated theme meant a LOT of Brush N Grow Ponies suffered at the hands of kids with scissors, and others wound up with broken mechanisms.
Though the Brush N Grow Ponies were sold on cards (and not in boxes) for the United Kingdom release, some boxed ponies did make their way to our shelves. I know for a fact that my own childhood Braided Beauty came in a box, because I remember arguing with my mother about the fact her cellophane was damaged (Mother did not want me to buy a pony in damaged packaging, and I was determined to have her). That being the case, it seems probable that some surplus North American stock was imported into the UK at some point.
Despite the cons, however, Brush 'n' Grow Ponies had a second outing in 1989 after a royal make-over, bringing Princess Brush And Grow Ponies to store shelves.