On Tuesday, June 25, Kim Kardashian-West revealed that she would soon be launching a line of shapewear. She has been working on it for the past year, and in her tweet, talked about how it would be coming in a wide range of shades and in a multitude of sizes. Sounds great, right? Well, I was totally sold on the idea, as was the rest of the Internet, until we saw what she was calling it.
Wait for it...
Now, I get that her intentions were probably not malicious in any way and that she was just trying to play off her name, but still! Kimono? It's a little insensitive. If you weren't already aware, a kimono is a piece of traditional Japanese clothing, so people are heated about the new name of her company.
In their uproar, people have started tweeting in protest of the name of Kim's brand, using #KimOhNo. She has also been called "tasteless and awful" for choosing the name of her shapewear brand so carelessly. It made matters worse when people found out that Kim has reportedly filed to trademark "Kimono," "Kimono Intimates," "Kimono Solutionwear," "Kimono World," and "Kimono Body."
Many Japanese women have begun posting photographs of themselves in their kimonos, with captions like, "This is my kimono. Not your underwear." (@kimonosheila), expressing their feelings that their cultural traditions cannot be taken and changed into a shapewear brand. I feel like Twitter user Yuka Ohishi (@0oyukao0) said it best in her tweet,
"Naming your product/startup with Japanese words might seem hip and all, but it really sucks for us when our culture is diluted by names of brands that don't have anything to do with what the word actually represents.
And better yet, trademarking it? F NO."
I think other than boycotting the shapewear line or posting your grievances about it on Twitter, all we can do is hope the Kardashians start to finally learn from each other's mistakes.