Infamous to iconic: Kim Kardashian’s rise to style stardom


    You might have been living under the rock if you’ve never heard the name Kim Kardashian. Whether you love her or hate her, she has become an inevitable icon in the fashion and media industry.

    When we think of Kim Kardashian, we visualize kimojis, big booty, plastic surgery, millions of dollars and most of us think she’s famous for nothing or she’s talentless. On the surface it does seem true, but contrary to that, she is a marketing genius who managed to market herself through different platforms, especially social media.

    Basically, she didn’t really start off from nothing as her surname – Kardashian was already the focus of the media before, but what caused her name to catapult into stardom was her infamous sex video. In this moment of pandemonium, Kris Jenner, her “momager,” capitalized on the overflowing media coverage on Kim, hence, the birth of Keeping Up With The Kardashians.

    KUWTK became a sought-after reality TV show as it depicts the real life happenings in the Kardashian/Jenner family. Kim became known as a business savvy woman, she produced her own make up and perfume line and used the show to promote her brand. Through consistent media coverage and publicity, she became a relevant part of the society.

    The booty that launched a million tweets
    She is able to infiltrate our wardrobe, directing the way we express our selves and somehow influences our buying decision.

    The show has shaped the American market in terms of fashion and beauty, from overly pouty lips, waist trainers, curvaceous figure, and strong eyebrow game. They have come to represent the so-called American dream.

    If you keep up with the Kardashians, you’ll know how her fashion sense changed drastically after Kanye gave her a full closet make over. Since her fashion style was mostly influenced by Kanye, her distinctive looks are comprised of minimalist streetwear and glitzy high fashion garments. Being blessed with a figure worth showing off, she was never insecure when it came to wearing tight-fitting clothes. In fact, she constantly gravitates to clothes that accentuate her best assets.

    From the viewpoint of student and model, Shaina Nazario, Kim Kardashian has a strong personality and she is comfortable in her own skin, which makes her a force to reckon with in the fashion industry. Kim’s signature aesthetic has always been daring, sexy and only sticks to blacks, neutrals or bright whites. She’s commonly seen wearing two-piece clothes, oversized tees or body con dresses with plunging neckline paired with thigh high boots, strappy heels or Yeezys.

    As a model, Nazario’s personal style is similar to Kim’s, she admits that Kim has had an impact on her appearance and that she is a fashion icon as she’s updated on what’s new in the fashion industry.

    When asked what her favorite styles of Kim are, she says, “My favorite style (among those) she popularized are bodycon dresses and latex outfit. It’s so chic, classy and fun to wear!”

    ‘The Kardashian effect’
    With millions of followers on their social media, it’s logical for any brand they wear and showcase on Instagram or Twitter instantly become a hit. Aptly called, “The Kardashian effect,” this ability to heavily influence the consumer market and create or set trends are what makes Kim and her sisters style phenomenons, turning them into fashion and beauty moguls.

    In essence, whatever they touch (or wear or use) is gold. Any brand of lipstick, any style of jeans immediately gets picked up and creates a buzz in the industry—on print, broadcast and digital media. As a result, the brands sell out immediately.

    According to Same Bellosillo, a Fashion Design and Merchandising student from De La Salle College of Saint Benilde, Kim Kardashian influences fashion because she can set trends, making her a fashion icon.

    For fashion designer Renzel Galleta, “I wouldn’t say she influenced/helped shape the industry as a whole. But she created a niche that consists of few teenagers going towards adults who love social media and who are attracted to looking ‘flawless’.”

    Based on his own perspective, Kim Kardashian is a household name and undeniably a fashion icon for some, typically the newer generations but not entirely for everyone.

    Apparently, “The Kardashian effect” does not only stop there. They engulfed not just the fashion industry but also the world of make up and beauty. Everyone jumped on the bandwagon of contouring when Kim showed a picture of herself before and after she contoured her face. The razor-sharp cheekbone and flawless make-up startled the entire social media. YouTube was flooded with video tutorials on how to get her look and make-up brands produced contouring kits.

    Just like sister Kylie, Kim also launched her own line of beauty products called Kim Kardashian West Beauty (KKW Beauty).

    According to makeup artist Andrea Alingalan, people quickly adapted Kim’s make up line because “maybe their products were made to meet the beauty standards of smoothness, handy and lightweight, 2in1, etc.” When her new makeup line came out, she took this opportunity to endorse her product and collaborate with famous YouTube make up gurus such as Desi Perkins, Patrick Star, Jaclyn Hill, and many more.

    Redefining beauty standards
    The millennial culture is considered to be looks-driven, there is a 40 percent increase in Americans seeking looks similar to Kim and undergo procedures to achieve the pouty lips and curvaceous behind. She redefined the new standards of beauty even though many are opposing and unconvinced; she had an overwhelming effect on the American pop culture. And as she constantly posts her half naked body on her social media, she aims to show that women of all ages should be able to do or wear what they want without being slut shamed.

    Kim Kardashian’s power and fame brought her to the ultimate level of success. She is an empowering woman who had a very sensational turnover and who is continuously taking over the fashion industry. She has indeed manipulated the American market but there is no definitive answer if her fashion styles have completely dominated Asian countries. I guess we all should keep a look out for what ventures she’ll do in the following years.


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