If Kim Kardashian knows nothing else, she knows how to present an image of herself. And as she ramps up her launch of new beauty line KKW Beauty, she’s counting on folks to invest in their desire to look and be like her.
But in a promo shot for KKW Beauty, Kardashian’s drawn social media fire for her quite, ah, dark skin tone.
This image was tweeted June 14:
— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) June 14, 2017
The next day, a pretty significantly lighter version of that exact image was posted on Kardashian’s Twitter account:
— KKW BEAUTY (@kkwbeauty) June 15, 2017
not saying she's doing black face, but contour don't make ur entire complexion two shades darker
— MKNISH (@mknishh) June 15, 2017
Y'all wanna be Black so badly.
— Ᏸecca? (@MJStarLover) June 14, 2017
— Skyvin X (@Skyvin_X) June 14, 2017
this editing sis. gotta go
— ? (@stiIsane) June 14, 2017
Plenty of folks defended Kim’s look, attributing it to tanning, contouring, photography filter tricks, and more. Others gently suggested reuploading the image at a brighter tone, which she eventually did:
hey it looks like your editor made a mistake, here's what you really look like (luv u tho!) pic.twitter.com/Jnoi46OKzL
— doe (@michishiges) June 14, 2017
Not THAT naturally dark! Kim you beautiful but I think your makeup artist went to far this time.
— Lee Ann Bauer (@bauer_lee) June 14, 2017
In an interview with the New York Times about KKW Beauty, Kim directly responded to the entire situation, apologizing and also explaining that no one on her team noticed anything off about the image:
I would obviously never want to offend anyone. I used an amazing photographer and a team of people. I was really tan when we shot the images, and it might be that the contrast was off. But I showed the image to many people, to many in the business. No one brought that to our attention. No one mentioned it.
Of course, I have the utmost respect for why people might feel the way they did. But we made the necessary changes to that photo and the rest of the photos. We saw the problem, and we adapted and changed right away. Definitely I have learned from it.
By Lilian Min