It’s barely been one day since Kim Kardashian announced her shapewear line, and she’s already receiving a slew of backlash. On Tuesday, the 38-year-old mogul revealed Kimono shapewear, her new collection of body sculpting pieces that come in a variety of flesh-toned shades. In her post, she said she’s been working on Kimono for the past year and calls the project her “take on shapewear and solutions for women that actually work.”
“I would always cut up my shapewear to make my own styles,” she continued in the post. “And there have also been so many times I couldn’t find a [shapew color that blended with my skin tone so we needed a solution for all of this.” Her solution is Kimono Solutionwear (get it?), which features body-hugging undergarments in nine shades and a variety of versatile styles. Think asymmetrical shorts for dress or skirts with slits and high-waisted briefs.
Finally I can share with you guys this project that I have been developing for the last year.
I’ve been passionate about this for 15 years.
Kimono is my take on shapewear and solutions for women that actually work.
Photos by Vanessa Beecroft pic.twitter.com/YAACrRltX3
— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) June 25, 2019
The designs look good, but here’s the problem: Though Kim says that Kimono shapewear is “for every body” and will come in sizes XXS-4XL, the line is being called out for the lack of body diversity in its marketing. In the brand’s promotional images, the models all have body types similar to her own. Whether it was intentional or not, the initial campaign does not deliver a message of inclusivity.
“All of these girls look identical though,” wrote one Twitter user. “How about using women of all different sizes? All those women are slim,” said another. Some are also claiming that the XXS sizes would be useless, saying that thin women don’t need shapewear.
Of course, many are supportive of Kim’s endeavor and were quick to point out that regardless of size, women might want help shaping their bodies. “No matter how little you are that post baby pouch is awful! Love that I can get this in a XS!” said a fan on Twitter.
Nice underwear, but as a Japanese woman who loves to wear our traditional dress,👘 kimono, I find the naming of your products baffling (since it has no resemblance to kimono), if not outright culturally offensive, especially if it’s merely a word play on your name. Pls reconsider
— Yuko Kato (@yukokato1701) June 26, 2019
What’s more, critics are also coming for Kim over the name of the brand. The word “kimono,” which she has trademarked, refers to the traditional Japanese garment. Since the line has nothing to do with Japanese culture, many are accusing Kim and the brand of cultural appropriation, something the Kardashians have been slammed with before. It didn’t take long before the hashtag #KimOhNo was born.
It’s clear that no matter what the Kardashians do, they’re going to receive backlash, but we can’t argue that there’s nothing problematic about Kimono shapewear. Kim hasn’t announced an official launch date for the collection, but you can join the waitlist for updates. Or, you can shop these tried and true shapewear staples.
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