A Tribute To Pop Culture Icon Kim Kardashian West
Love or hate her, we all still talk about her
People have said many things about Kim Kardashian West, often to discredit her, and how she’s only famous for being famous. Sure, being the daughter of the late Robert Kardashian, who was a friend to and defense attorney of OJ Simpson, may have helped prime her for the spotlight. And okay Paris Hilton, you may have unwittingly boosted Kim’s popularity by being her "friend" and hiring her as your assistant-stylist and then later throwing shade at her. Finally, that infamous sex tape with Ray J in 2007 that utterly catapulted her to mainstream consciousness.
Flash-forward to 10 years later, Kim Kardashian West—now mother of two, married to the brilliant Kanye West, still starring in her own reality series Keeping Up With The Kardashians, with 102M followers on Instagram alone, a recently launched beauty line of contour and highlighter kits, KKW Beauty, etc., etc., etc.—is still inarguably relevant. You’ve got to give this woman some credit; it’s not easy to stay relevant, especially in the world of social media, where trending topics change on a daily, if not an hourly, basis—regardless of how many naked selfies you take. Kim, with some help from her momager Kris Jenner and the genius team behind her empire, is not a pop culture phenomenon by accident. Let’s look at the facts, shall we?
#1 Kim has—whether you agree or disagree—empowered women by being herself and talking about issues we women sometimes can’t talk about
Believe it or not there was a time when having curves wasn’t the norm for women. And though we don’t always agree with everything Kim does, by embracing her body and flaunting that famous behind, Kim gave confidence to women whose body types had previously been out of fashion.
That Paper magazine cover. Via The New York Post
On women’s issues, Kim has openly talked about her fertility struggles, which has been documented on the show in such intense detail. Read: vaginal examinations, IVF treatments, the very process of pregnancy and birth. And for all those who’ve been called a whale or balyena while pregnant, she’s also touched on pregnancy body-shaming and how the process is different for every woman. Take that, trolls.
Naked selfie, pregnant edition
#2 Let’s be honest, it helps that she looks good with or without makeup
It doesn’t hurt that Kim is blessed with a face and body features that a large part of the world finds attractive. And she (together with makeup artist Mario Dedivanovic) knows exactly how to enhance and highlight her best assets. BUT at the same time, Kim is also unafraid to step out with little to no makeup on; see Paris Fashion Week last year.
Kim’s Selfish book cover. Via dailymail.co.uk
Makeup free and in Balenciaga at PFW 2016. Via Twitter
#3 She continues to evolve, literally and figuratively
Kim was once into body-hugging dresses, spiked heels and colorful everything. But thanks to Kanye (and his stylist, Vogue Australia fashion director Christine Centenera), whom she credits her style transformation to, Kim’s looks has dialed down and shot up to high fashion meets high street meets athleisure—looks that are well-edited but still ultra sexy. Our favorite looks and magazine covers below:
New York Magazine 2012
Vogue Australia, 2015
Bazaar Arabia 2017
T Singapore 2017
Meanwhile, Kim’s experiences have also changed her for the better. For instance, since being robbed at gunpoint in Paris last year, Kim has gone from sharing everything about every single aspect of her life to taking it down a couple of notches and keeping the intimate parts of daily life private. Check out her interview on the Paris incident with Ellen:
#4 Kim is a serious businesswoman
The spotlight may have found Kim, but it must take a lot of work to keep it on her. From being executive producer to the famous clan’s reality series, #KUWTK, to launching three of Apple’s top-grossing, revenue-generating apps, Kim Kardashian: Hollywood (downloaded 45 million times, generated $160 million and earned Kim $45 million as of August 2017), Kimojis and recently, Kim Kardashian West official app, and launching her line of contour and highlighter kits (sold out in less than 3 hours), Kim surely knows how to diversify her assets, monetize them and make serious bank.
KKW Contour Kits. Available at kkwbeauty.com
#5 She knows how to harness the power of social media
While the rest of the world was still using Twitter in 2009, Kim was among the first few to realize the appeal of Instagram and how it can be used for self-promotion as well as a platform for discussion of products and a place to connect with fans. So how much does she earn per IG post? We heard some companies have paid her a whopping $500,000 for access to her millions of followers.
#6 For her and the rest of the Kardashians, family always comes first
Say what you will about the Kardashians, but if there’s anything we’ve learned from them, it’s that family—no matter what happens—comes first, always. Anybody seen the opening credits for #KUWTK Season 14? Of course you have.
Meanwhile in her coverstory for Glamour magazine in July 2015, she’s expressed how’s she grown up and how she appreciates having a family of her own:
“I'm a completely different person. I don't know if it's growing up or being with Kanye, who's more private, but I try and live my off time as privately as possible. I used to enjoy the spotlight. If I had a day off from filming, I didn't know what to do. Now I enjoy my family time so much, there is this sense of, if it all went away, and I was just a mom, I would love my life.”
“There is this sense of, if it all went away, and I was just a mom, I would love my life,”—Kim Kardashian West
#7 Kim takes care of her most loyal fans and pays it forward
While many just see Kim on the red carpet in looks we can only dream of or running an errand looking like she’s going somewhere important, KKW knows how to pay it forward, too. For instance for her baby shower, instead of receiving gifts, she asked for donations to be made out to a children’s hospital in Chicago. As for her fans, it seems that she really cares about them as she does things like surprise them on their birthday. How cool is that?
KKW birthday bash with friends and fans, 2014
KKW surprises one of her super fans, Myleeza for her birthday in 2015
Love or hate her, we can't help but keep it Kim Kardashian West.
Happy birthday KKW!