Beauty Idols, Personal

Beauty Idols: The Contemporary

I’ve been wanting to start an open-ended series of posts about my beauty idols. The people who inspire me, the faces that make me want to be beautiful. I was thinking of starting with someone older than me, someone who has been an influence for decades, but I couldn’t decide where to start. Then, in the middle of the night last night, my first subject showed herself to me. It wasn’t who I thought it would be, but I found myself spooling out a thousand images in my mind that showed me, yes, she’s where to start.

You might be surprised.

kim k beaded headpiece

WHO’S THAT GIRRRRRRL????

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IT’S KIM!

Before you start, let me stop you: Do not even try to come at me with your Kim Kardashian hate. I won’t have it. I don’t hear it. I don’t even care. Whatever comment you have makes you sound prudish/judgmental/sexist/jealous/mad. Sorry bout it! It ain’t welcome here!

Do I care about her sex tape? Not even a tiny bit. Do I think she’s dumb? No, I do not. I think she’s completely self aware and shrewd. If you don’t see the game, you might need to think harder about who’s dumb.

I’m sorry if I sound defensive, but I just spent an hour and a half Googling Kimmie, and the ugly, disgusting, misogynistic things that pop up about her before anything else are disheartening. Why the need to waste so much energy tearing this woman down? The attacks on her are so personal, and so hateful. For what? Why? Because of her money? Because of her body? Why so much hate towards her body?

The woman is an anomaly.

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We should all be so lucky! When I look at her, I don’t even get mad about my body. She’s so fantastical, her body is nearly unattainable. Other celebrity bodies, I can comprehend the work that has gone into them. But how Kim’s stomach is so flat, and she keeps her ass so big, I’ll never understand.

I really think people can not handle the fact that she exists in the same real universe as the rest of us. She’s not a cartoon. She’s a living, breathing woman who, by genetics or design, looks impossible. She’s just so outlandishly shaped that she scrambles our brains. One of the best descriptions of Kim I’ve ever read came from Tina Fey, who described her looks as, “…made by Russian scientists to sabotage our athletes.”

When she was pregnant, she looked so fecund, so radiant, she was a modern day fertility goddess. Pregnancy suited her beautifully.

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Kimberly! Stahp!!

P.S. Would you like to know what the first autocomplete suggestion was when I Googled “Kim Kardashian pregnant?” Whale. It thought I wanted to Google that her pregnant body makes her look like a whale. It thought it was obvious. That’s so fucking gross. Just let the woman be pregnant. Let her let her body do what it needs and wants to do. Could you imagine? The whole world being so vocally critical of your pregnant body? Horrifying. I guess the argument could be made that such is the price of fame, but do we, as a culture, need to extract every penny so viciously?

Anyways.

Beauty and fashion wise, MEDIA WISE, she’s an icon for the new millennium. I find her constant style reinvention inspiring, and her unapologetic need for glamour bracing. Most often, people, celebrities in particular demur when faced with the question of whether they want all these “things” all these material trappings. Not so for Kim. She is awash in fashion and glitter and expensive things, and she is fine with it. She seems like the kind of person who prefers a hotel to camping, and that doesn’t make her bad. I get that preference! A distaste for roughing it doesn’t make you any less real.

She is SO REAL.

Where our beloved Queen Bey seem so far above the rest of us, Kim lets us see her ugly crying face, she lets us see her painfully mottled feet, swollen from her pregnancy. Kim seems like maybe you knew a girl like her in high school. She would have had on glittery butterfly clips, and you would ride in her Eclipse to go get fries at McDonald’s. She sings along to “No Scrubs” with you. Her bags were more expensive than yours, she had a pager, and her parents would let her do things your parents would never allow. The Kardashians, Kim in particular, understand how to show you they’re like you. I love that. That’s a big part of why I chose Kim as my first beauty icon. She’s not always the perfectly contoured face on the red carpet.

And can we talk about that contoured face?

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Kim’s look has sparked a makeup wildfire. Normal women who don’t have makeup artists, who don’t have photo shoots, know how to do a highlight and contour now, and that is because of Kim Kardashian. All over the beauty world, “Kim Kardashian face” is shorthand for an admittedly heavy, but polished and flawless contour job. She brought it to the masses. THANK YOU, KIM.

This fabulous woman, with one sex tape, unleashed a whirlwind of big hair, face contouring, body, and style upon the world. And, she was able to bring her entire family along with her! Famous for nothing? Bullshit. She’s famous because she keeps going. She’s famous because no matter what’s going on around her, divorces, pregnancies, body shaming, the insatiable public hunger for her downfall, she straps on gorgeous shoes and walks out the door. She’s famous because she perseveres. She’s famous because she’s not an idiot. Paris Hilton was an idiot. Kim is no idiot. She’s famous because she is our Most Beautiful. She looks like America. She is all too much, and we LOVE to have too much.

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Kim is one of my beauty idols for the obvious reasons: her makeup is perfect, she has an adventurous sense of style, her hair is ideal, she knows her own face and body and she uses them with a model’s sensibility.

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Kim is one of my beauty idols for the less obvious reason: she doesn’t let the hate keep her down. If you’re going to be a beauty revolutionary, you might have to face some harsh criticism. I can’t think of anyone who gets it worse than Kim, and she shows off her beauty anyways.

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About all of this.

Kim will not yield the spotlight. You can’t force her. She doesn’t retreat. She goes blonde.

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