Leigh Campbell: 'Thank you to the Kardashians for shaping how I feel about beauty.'

When the Kardashians announced this week that they’re hanging up their Loubs from filming KUWTK, I felt sad.

Sad, because I love that show. (And side note, I’ve never had a problem with admitting that. If people make you feel bad for liking the Kardashians it shows more about that person than it does you. FYI: you can be smart, you can be a feminist, and you can not agree with everything celebrities do and still enjoy them.)

It got me thinking about how over the 14 years the sisters have been on our tellies we have witnessed incredible beauty transformations. Several of them. Some, quite drastic.

Watch the intro for the first season of Keeping Up with the Kardashians. Post continues below.

Video via E!

There’s no question that Kim looks very different now than she did a decade and a half ago. And sure, we all look different after several years pass, but her appearance isn't just down to time ticking by — it’s an example of having an unashamed love for makeup, a case for not needing to explain or apologise when it comes to what you choose to do with your face and body, and also a display of what difference having a lot of money makes.

Do I think Kim and her sisters are perfect role models in the beauty space that all women should look up to? No. Does what they do to their appearance in any way make me feel like I need to do it to mine? Also no. 

What they have done, though, is made me feel more confident in sharing my love for foundation and eyeshadow and lip liner. It could be argued that pre-Kardashians, it was less acceptable to admit an obsession with makeup. But the sisters not only gave girls permission to embrace cosmetics as a hobby, they made multi-million dollar businesses out of it and played a huge part in birthing beauty YouTubers and influencers as a generation.


Kee Reece and Laura Brodnik discuss why the Kardashians quit their own show on Mamamia's daily entertainment podcast, The Spill. Post continues below. 

More divisive is the ‘work’ they have done to their faces. There’s one camp of feminism who vehemently believe that Botox and lip filler and plastic surgery is playing into the patriarchy and subconsciously causing women and girls to dislike the way they look ‘naturally’.  

The other camp, which I am firmly in, believes that it’s a woman’s prerogative (and their business only) to pick and choose what they do to their own face and body. Having full control over those decisions without having to explain or apologise is ownership to me, and what can be more feminist than that?

I also enjoy the voyeurism in simply observing the stuff they do, or get done. There’s no way in hell I could spend two hours of my life in ‘glam’ every day, no matter how much I love makeup. I was considering getting my wonky hairline lasered until I saw Kim have hers done and later vocalise that she regretted it. And still to this day I am puzzled by how all of them handle that time of the month with fingernails as long as bananas. So thanks to them for also teaching me which parts of beauty I have no interest in. 

Vale, KUWTK. I know I’ll still see lots of Kim and co. on my socials, but I’ll really miss five different hair lengths, three various hair colours and countless glam changes each episode.

Cheers for the good (looking) times. 

Feature Image: Supplied/E!

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