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Skims, the shapewear brand of Kim Kardashian

Despite criticism and controversy, the brand continues to be loved and offer products for all women

Skims, the shapewear brand of Kim Kardashian Despite criticism and controversy, the brand continues to be loved and offer products for all women

Without any doubt Kim Kardashian West plays a leading role in the aesthetics of the last decade. Jean Paul Goude’s naked Kim pics created a visual parallel with her body and a bottle of champaign that earned her hourglass figure a place in history, making it a turning point of an epic change. Blame it on Instagram or on the family show hosted on E!TV, Keeping Up with the Kardashians, Kim’s bum and wasp waist went viral and switched the beauty body standard from the obsessive skinniness of the 90s into a voluptuous curviness frenzy. 

But what’s the secret behind such perfect beauty? Probably plastic surgery isn't unfamiliar to Kim’s body but, after 2019 Met Gala’s red carpet, things were made clear by the star herself. She wore an extra tight bodycon dress from Thierry Mugler historical archives, that cinched her waist in a very unnatural way that reportedly left scars on her torso. Kim revealed she has always been a huge fan of shapewear, from corsets to waist trainers, so much that she decided to create a business on that. Skims is Kim’s “solution wear” label, that produces shaping and containing underwear and lingerie born to smooth and enhance every woman and every body, without sacrificing comfort and confidence.

Kanye designed the Skims logo, and his hype aura assisted the brand that is already on the spotlight after the Skims Seamless face Masks, available in 6 different nude shades, got sold out in two days - despite the controversy and accusations of racism. Skims name comes from the wordplay between “skin” and “Kim”, which creates an immediate association of the product with its founder who has tons of fan both in the US and around the world.

What seems a good choice is actually a judgement call: in the beginning Kim K named her “solution wear” brand Kimono. The name sounded extremely good with her already existing merchandize, Kimoji and KKW Beauty, according both to her and her husband. The launch on June 2019 was followed a huge backlash from the Japanese community: the secular tradition of kimono was sullied by Kim’s marketing choice and the whole Twitter community called her out for the umpteenth cultural appropriation case. The event witnesses the scant regard for cultural aspects in marketing and economic choices especially when they involve cultural minorities, whose traditional elements are often borrowed to add something to lines that are not enough to be successful alone. In this case especially the wear of the two clothing pieces are completely different: Kimonos have specific folding procedures to be worn during Japanese festivities and shapewear must be seamless and discreet in most of the cases. The hashtag #Kimohno dominated Twitter for days and Kyoto’s major had his take on the story before Kim publicly apologized and changed idea on her trademark. The Japanese culture won the fight against American capitalistic views on eastern culture. Now, with the name Skims, the brand is definitely better represented in its good intentions.


The solution mission

Skims mission is to embrace diversity and promote inclusivity with 11 available sizes, from XXS to 4X and 9 shades for each item that include 3 undertone colours for every shade: “sand”, “mica” and “clay” cover the spectrum of fair with respectively pink, yellow and neutral undertone, then “ochre”, “sienna” and “umber” do the same for medium skin tones and so do “oxide”, “cocoa” and “onyx” for dark skin tones. Each “solution” is presented to enhance curves and contour the body concealing it in target zones. Skims presentation videos feature the Kardashian-Jenner sisters talking about their insecurities, making clear tat also stars have flaws and have to deal with them, like any other human being.


Skims worth-trying products

The selection offers garments to contour and sculpt the tummy zone, with innovative products like the Skirt Slip, a containing underskirt or the Open Bust Slim Dress, a fitting negligee that creates a contouring game without giving up on your favorite bra. If the critical zones to smooth were the thighs, a whole collection of shaping shorts would be at the rescue, concealing cellulite and creating volume. The revolutionary Solution Short is perfect for the occasions when you wear a high slit skit, featuring a regular leg short and a cut-out leg, available both in the left and right version. This made Chrissy Teigen crazy, so that she twitted “Finally I can stop cutting my Spanks!”, demonstrating the efficacy of the proposed solution. Beyond contouring and shaping solutions, Skims adds to its offer the “Styling Solutions" category, featuring the famous Body Tape, which was originally made popular by Kim herself but is actually deployed in the cinema and red carpet industry’s history since decades to hold everything up seamlessly.

The American community shows high appreciation of the brand, that along with Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty 40 shades of foundation revolution, is likely to be the right answer to the lack of products studied and offered to fulfill black women’s requirements and needs. Skims first competitor, Spanx has only two shades for each item, creating an excluding and elitarian product offering, that isn’t up-to-date with current society. Kim Kardashian has after all created a product able to satisfy needs and desires of all women, including the American population that must be represented as all the others, without discrimination.