— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) June 14, 2017
On Wednesday, Kim Kardashian West took to Instagram to announce the launch of her new beauty line, KKW Beauty. She did so via three pale-beige-blush videos showing naught but a date and a website URL. (KKW Beauty and Kylie Cosmetics share the same PR agency — can you tell?) KKW stans rejoiced. Kim’s erstwhile makeup suppliers despaired (we imagine).
The next day, in another Kylie-reminiscent move, Kim posted an unabashedly retouched KKW Beauty #ad. In the photo, a dramatically lit Kim wears the upcoming KKW Beauty Creme Contour and Highlight Kit (due out June 21). Social media response was mixed, with several Twitter users claiming that Kim’s skin tone seemed uncharacteristically dark. Many likened the photo to blackface. Some went so far as to illustrate their point with contrasting photos showing what the picture would look like with what they consider Kim’s natural skin tone.
You dont have to do blackface pic.twitter.com/MLcJ5Hbg9R
— Wynters (@Sacha_Wynters) June 14, 2017
Kim K did blackface. Which is why she deleted her tweet. But I won’t get into that bc I know how delusional her Black & non Black stans are.
— Cole Turner’s wife (@WickedBeaute) June 15, 2017
hey it looks like your editor made a mistake, here’s what you really look like (luv u tho!) pic.twitter.com/Jnoi46OKzL
— (@michishiges) June 14, 2017
you black now sis?
— bonafidehoe (@pettyyonceh) June 14, 2017
Black women get told to lighten meanwhile Kim spends her entire career in perpetual Black face and is lauded for her beauty. https://t.co/Nkbps038nl
— Austin Wines (@seniWnitsuA) June 14, 2017
Others saw no harm, attributing Kim’s complexion to her recent tequila-drenched stint in the Bahamas (not Mexico).
don’t get why people are saying you did blackface. Your jus tan from vacation. Do people not follow your snap and see you in Mexico tannin?
— Em Hinds (@helloohemmy) June 15, 2017
The Kardashians have been accused of racial insensitivity and appropriating black culture before, to further their respective #brands. Back in 2015, Kylie got dragged for wearing “blackface” in a highly stylized photo shoot. Just last week both Khloé and Kylie were accused of copying clothes created by black designers. Debleudazzled’s Destiney Bleu claimed Khloé stole her crystal-embellished leotard design. Tizita Balemlay of PluggedNYC pointed the finger at Kylie vis-à-vis her new camo line.
The Wrap reports that Kim deleted her original tweet-out of the ad, though it’s since been reposted and is now both her Twitter and Instagram user pic. Kim has yet to comment on the controversy, although, on Friday morning at around 2 a.m. EST, she posted another similarly shaded ad. So it appears she’s standing her ground. No doubt all will be revealed in Keeping Up With the Kardashians’ fourteenth(!) season.
A post shared by Kim Kardashian West (@kimkardashian) on
What are your thoughts? Can the ad be considered blackface? Is it Kim’s way of telling us her makeup line, like Kylie’s, will cater to a range of skin tones? Is she simply showing off her summer tan? Is this a total non-issue? Sound off in the comments below.
[ via the Cut ]