TW: Conversations about body image and rapid weight loss
The influencer and SKIMS creator shared a collection of photos via Instagram, showing off her new line, as she modeled a nude lounge bra and matching high-waisted shorts.
The post was playfully captioned, “Sunday in my @Skims.”
However, the lightheartedness came to an abrupt end as the photo began to circulate across other social media platforms, and many began to accuse the “Keeping Up with the Kardashians ” star of manipulating a particular part of her body in the poolside selfie. Can you guess what part was assumed to be embellished? What were your initial guesses? Stomach? Lips? Breasts? Thighs?
Well, you thought wrong! The golden answer is — belly button.
As the photo circulated, so did the conversations about #bellybuttongate. One Twitter user shared their thoughts, writing, “There is a literal war. Children are dying. Children are hungry, and missing their parents. People are going through the most harrowing things. But yes, let’s discuss Kim Kardashian’s belly button.”
Another Twitter user wrote, “Kim Kardashian photoshops her photos so much, she accidentally erased her belly button.”
Despite the conflicting opinions about the seriousness of Kardashian’s possibly digitally removed belly button, it has implications for a much larger conversation.
Photoshopping is a common occurrence on social media, especially among public figures who get paid to post. Textured skin becomes completely smooth, filters brighten a day that would otherwise look dull and the sizes of bodies entirely morph.
Although everyone has the right to change whatever they want about themselves, it’s in the best interest of the public that this is disclosed — because if not, these enhancements can be a catalyst for larger dangers.
Undisclosed photoshopping adds greatly to the immense pressure society places on people today. These types of photographs lead to those on the other side of the screen believing what they are viewing is an achievable type of beauty — even though it isn’t, because the person in the picture hasn’t even achieved the type of beauty they are so openly displaying.
The effects of excessive photo altering can begin to weigh on the user as well. It can cause self-esteem to deteriorate, as they begin to feel that they aren’t attractive without using the same appearance-altering editing tools. This can push users to try to match up with their falsified photos no matter what it takes to get there — which can lead to the development of more dangerous mental health conditions like anorexia, bulimia and body dysmorphia.
In addition to getting slammed for her belly button photoshop frenzy, Kardashian has found herself in the hot seat again for her Met Gala crash diet.
On Monday, May 2, the 2022 Gilded Glamour theme Met Gala took place. Kardashian hit the carpet stunning the world as she modeled Marilyn Monroe’s very own, sparkly, nude “Happy Birthday, Mr. President” dress on the red carpet. Since being purchased in 2016 for $4.8 million, the dress has resided in a dimly lit temperature-controlled vault at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Orlando.
However, controversy began to bubble on the red carpet during an interview with Vogue Livestream host La La Anthony, where Kardashian revealed the lengths she went to fit into one of Hollywood’s most legendary garments.
She told Anthony, “I tried it on and it didn’t fit me. I had three weeks and I had to lose 16 pounds. It was like a role. I was determined to fit into it. I don’t think they believed I was going to do it, but I did it.”
She went on to give specific details of her rapid weight loss, disclosing, “I would wear a sauna suit twice a day, run on the treadmill, completely cut out all sugar and all carbs, and just eat the cleanest veggies and protein. I didn’t starve myself, but I was so strict.”
When she was finally able to zip the gown a few weeks later, she told Anthony, “I wanted to cry tears of joy when it went up.”
There’s so much to delve into about this Vogue interview and it’s only under two minutes. For starters, Vogue Magazine is completely at fault for releasing this interview and it’s still currently available on their YouTube channel.
In the interview, while Kardashian gets into the fine details of how she slimmed down to fit into Monroe’s gown, the interviewer gawks at her and applauds her dedication, adding even more to the toxic mindset that the Kardashians have been trapped in for the past decade. Under zero circumstances should someone be applauded for restricting their diet for weeks on end to fit into a dress.
Shifting gears to Kardashian, she’s completely at fault for believing it was okay to tell millions on a live program how to lose such a substantial amount of weight at such a rapid speed. At no point during the interview did she consider the viewers who could be adversely affected by her comments, especially younger individuals who are extremely impressionable. For those struggling currently and previously with body image issues, this could be a major trigger point — and for others who may not have struggled before, she just gave them a step-by-step guide down the rabbit hole.
This stunt takes the cake as Kardashian’s most out-of-the-box stunt, however, she’s a repeat offender for promoting harmful behavior to her audience. On her social media over the past few years, she has promoted many harsh fad diet products, some of them being Skinny Tea (which is just a green tea laxative), appetite suppressant lollypops and, as previously discussed, she’s been accused of using photoshop on a multitude of occasions while never confirming if her photos are edited.
Overall, Kardashian’s behavior in these multiple instances in the past week or so cannot be swept under the rug. She continues to use her massive platform to spew unhealthy behaviors at her followers, and the fact that they are unhealthy behaviors is constantly being brushed aside. She must stop. Enough is enough.
Help is available: