Kim Kardashian’s cover shoot for the latest edition of Vogue is being criticized for cultural appropriation and failing to credit black women for influencing her image.
Yesterday (February 9), the fashion magazine revealed that it had profiled the Keeping Up With The Kardashians star for its March issue, showing photos of the beauty mogul in several editorial fashion looks. Folks on social media were quick to note that Kim’s photos share an uncanny similarity with images of black women such as Naomi Campbell, Beyoncé and Nina Simone.
Popular fashion Instagram account Diet Prada posted a number of side-by-side comparison shots, writing, “Kim and Vogue said ‘Black History Month'” alongside their post.
“In the middle of Black History Month, they drop this on us. So *tired* of being told a Kardashian is ‘redefining beauty’ when Black women have been setting beauty and style trends for decades,” wrote one person. Another commented, “This is Rachel Dolezal level of appropriation at this point.”
One collage shows a famous side portrait of Nina Simone, where her hair has been swept up into a high, cone-shaped bun and decorated with pearls, alongside a side portrait of Kardashian, who is also sporting a dramatic bun. Other collages compared Naomi Campbell’s Vogue shoot for the magazine’s November 2021 as well as both women wearing sheer, wet-looking dresses. Diet Prada’s post, which has also been liked by Campbell herself, has received more than 5,000 comments and nearly 200,000 likes.
Others took issue with Kim failing to credit black women as inspirations for her style and image. “I don’t get why she couldn’t shout out a single black woman for the impact they’ve had on her own image,” Diet Prada wrote on their Instagram story. This isn’t the first time Kim has faced backlash for cultural appropriation — per The Independent, in 2019, she announced she had renamed her shapewear brand to SKIMS after the original name “Kimono” was criticized (A kimono is a traditional Japanese garment, symbolic of the country’s cultural heritage).