The dictionary defines a role model as “A person looked to by others as an example to be imitated.” Celebrities are often identified as role models, even when they don’t want to be. Rihanna has openly spoken on how she feels in regards to being labeled a role model. When referring to Taylor Swift Rih stated “In my mind she’s a role model; I’m not”. Being in the public eye and adored by thousands even millions, it is hard not to be classed as a person to look up to. Now reaching adulthood Kylie Jenner has joined a long list of celebrities who are labeled as bad role models.
Looking at Kylie she is so mature for her youth. I have to constantly remind myself she is only 18. It’s hard to view her as a teenager; instead she has appeared as a child growing up before her time. After turning 18 in August the trendsetting teenager has embarked on some controversial activity which have further thrust her into the public eye. From alleged surgery to rumours of an underage relationship, are these the guidelines we want to our young girls to aspire to?
When you watch the first season of Keeping up the Kardashians, Jenner was only seen on the show briefly alongside her older sister Kendall. She came across so sweet and innocent; your average child. Now Jenner has become this well-known socialite with over 40 million Instagram followers. Seductive selfies, and romantic snaps with current boyfriend Tyga.
When I first started noticing changes in Jenner, I can’t deny I was amazed. How could someone so young be such a fashion killer?. Everything was on point. You would look at her and think girl you are living the dream! Nice clothes, nice cars, nice make-up right?
Kylie’s fans have grown up watching her and most of them are fairly young. A lot of younger fans may aspire to be like Kylie when they reach a certain age.
I came across the post below on Tumblr.
Adolescent girls are often insecure about their image so will seeing the likes of Jenner waist training and enhancing her lips makes it seem acceptable for a teenager struggling with body image? A female body does not stop growing until they are 22, however if it’s acceptable for Jenner they may feel it’s acceptable for them to imitate this behaviour. As part of the Kardashian/Jenner brand and her oldest sister being most famous for her body, Kylie may feel like she has to fit into a ‘brand’.
Although Jenner has a great interaction with her fans this behaviour doesn’t necessarily encourage her fans to be comfortable within their own skin. By lying about her lip enhancement, as a role model she is not teaching fans to embrace their flaws, but to hide them. Each to their own, however perhaps she should have shared her insecurity story first. Whether celebrities want to be classed as a role model or not fans should be able to relate, in my opinion that is important. If she expressed her insecurities first she may have received a less frosty response from the public.
Physically Jenner may or may not be a good role model but her latest anti-bullying venture is certainly admirable with her #iammorethan hashtag. At the beginning of September, Kylie began sharing aspects of her anti-bullying campaign. On her Instagram, she has been sharing pictures and stories of people who have experienced bullying and has bonded with people through her campaign.
Despite what we may think of Jenner good or bad this is the kind of positivity we need. She is making use of her heavily influential social media platform and creating something inspirational.This shifts from the self absorbed ‘famous for nothing’ aura that seems to follow the Kardashians. If you are a fan of Kylie, you will know she also goes by ‘King Kylie’. It’s no rocket science that this is in relation to ‘King Gold Chains’ Tyga. Ever since they have become cosy in the public eye negativity has surrounded them.
Famous or not there are millions of people out there with age gaps within their relationships and in regards to ‘Kyga’ there relationship has remained a hot topic. From the age of 17, Jenner has been rumoured to be dating 25 year old Tyga. The backlash has been extreme and still continues. There has been comments from, ‘She’s a child’, to ‘She has broken up a family’. It also did not help that Kim and Blac Chyna (Tyga’s ex, and mother of his child) were once friends. On the flip-side it has been suggested that Tyga was taking advantage of her and using her for publicity. Time after time Tyga her sister Khloe, have labelled Jenner as ‘mature’ for her age.
Jenner may be mature, but many girls her age are not in the same situation as her. To own a mansion at 18 isn’t necessarily the norm. Of course Kylie is not the first and she won’t be the last. She should not be the only one being scrutinised for the example she is setting. Earlier this year The Weeknd, 25 started to date Bella Hadid, who was also 18. Surprisingly they have not experienced the level of negativity that Jenner and Tyga have received.
The main reason which may Kylie and Tyga have caused so much backlash, as prior to Kyga, there was Chyga. Tyga was in a relationship with Blac Chyna. Not long after their split, the rumours of Jenner and Tyga emerged. It comes across as a high school girl breaking up adult relationships and families.
The Weeknd and Hadid haven’t had much interest from the public but Tyga’s lyrics have caused concern.Google Stimulated if you’d like to know more.
Kylie may be only 18 and I certainly wouldn’t say she is the best role model for young girls. Yet. Just like many girls her age she should and probably is still finding herself. You have to make mistakes to know were you are going in life. She however can be someone young girls can identify with as her teenage mistakes are being publicised.
Words by Danielle Cummings