Kylie Jenner Accused of Blackface

Once again, one of the Kardashians (or should I say Jenner’s) has made it into the news. The youngest Jenner, Kylie, has recently been the topic of a lot of controversy particularly about her involvement with rapper Tyga but currently she finds herself in the middle of another debate.

Over the weekend the 17-year-old posted some photos on Instagram from her most recent photoshoot. Like quickfire people began commenting on the photos, some loving it and other accusing her of blackface. As soon as the idea of blackface was proposed, people immediately began to bash the photos on Twitter and criticize her for “wanting to be black.”

Kylie removed the original photo and then reposted a different photo with the caption “This is black light and neon lights people let’s all calm down.” She also made it a point to mention the photographer, the hairstylist, and the makeup artist.

This is a black light and neon lights people lets all calm down @marcelocantuphoto @joycebonelli @chrisdylanhair @hubblestudio

A photo posted by Kylizzle (@kyliejenner) on

Now I’m no expert at blackface but from when I first saw the photos on Instagram, I thought they looked cool. Also, comparing when comparing a picture of someone in blackface to Kylie Jenner’s photoshoot, it seems like it might be reaching for her to get accused of doing blackface. I mean really. Compare the photo from above with this picture of blackface.

Photo courtesy of 22860 from flikr
Photo courtesy of 22860 from flikr

From what I understand, blackface was when performers would use makeup to darken their faces so that they could play the part of an African American. Unless in recent years that meaning changed and today it means looking like you bathed in pixie dust and showered in neon paint, Kylie Jenner’s photoshoot is not blackface.

It seems like as soon as she got accused of blackface, everyone jumped on board without even looking at the photo critically. In her photoshoot, her skin is a sparkly metallic color, her eyes are blue, and her hair has colored streaks. If her eyes were their normal color and her skin was actually painted a black or dark brown color, then I could believe the blackface argument.

Now, it is a well known fact that the entire Kardashian/Jenner family are constantly scrutinized for trying to be black and undergoing plastic surgery to achieve black features, so could this blackface accusation be preconditioned by these beliefs? Is it a representation of how sensitized we’ve become to even the slightest chance that someone might be doing something racist, even if it’s not? Or do you think Kylie Jenner’s photoshoot is without a doubt blackface and people like me have put up shields to not see racist acts by people deemed famous?

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