The day after announcing her new makeup line, KKW Beauty, Kim Kardashian West shared the first promo of her anticipated products—but instead of the warm welcome she was probably expecting to get, the 36-year-old was slammed with accusations of blackface and racism.
The discussion began when the “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” star tweeted an ad for her line’s “creme contour and highlight kit,” along with KKW Beauty’s drop date and website. The ad showed the reality star smizing at the camera with an Ariana Grande-style high ponytail. Followers were also quick to point out that Kim’s skin looked noticeably darker than her usual shade.
The accusations of blackface quickly rolled in, with many critics lambasting Kim for attempting to darken her skin in an attempt to “try to be black.”
However, there were also fans who rallied around Kim and defended that her IRL complexion actually did match that of the ad’s. Some fans argued that the lighting made Kim look darker, while others chalked up the shade to her Armenian heritage and tendency to tan.
This isn’t the fist time Kim has been accused of cultural appropriation, either. In March, the reality star was slammed for wearing her hair in a fashion similar to a doobie wrap protective hairstyle, which, according to Refinery29’s Khalea Underwood, is a technique popularly worn by Caribbean women to “maintain a blowout on textured or curly hair.”
Currently, Kim’s sisters, Kylie Jenner and Khloe Kardashian, are embroiled in legal feuds for accusations that they plagiarized black designers in their new fashion lines.
So far, Kim has not responded to the backlash, but we hope she learns from this mistake, intentional or not.