It’s time to unfollow the Kardashians—both on social media and in your life.
The Kardashians use their influence to share edited and altered photos of their edited and altered bodies, supporting fatphobia, body dysmorphia, eating disorders, body obsession, body insecurity, and body negativity. As their reach grows, it’s more important that you do not let the influx of Kardashian content poison your mind while diminishing the perception you have of yourself. It’s quite literally impossible to keep up with their unattainable, ever-changing beauty standards, and it’s hurting more and more women, younger and younger each year.
At least 30 million Americans struggle with an eating disorder such as anorexia, bulimia, or binge eating. According to the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders, eating disorders affect at least 9% of the population worldwide. Eating disorders are among the deadliest mental illnesses, second only to opioid overdose. 10,200 deaths each year are the direct result of an eating disorder—that’s one death every 52 minutes. About 26% of people with eating disorders attempt suicide. The most common age of onset is between 12-25.
In 2019, there were 18.1 million surgical and minimally invasive procedures; 92% were for women, and 8% were for men. The top surgical procedure: breast augmentation (299,715 procedures). The top cosmetic minimally-invasive procedure: Botulinum toxin type A aka Botox (7.7 million procedures). 223,000 procedures were done on teenagers aged 13-19.
Stop romanticizing the mental illness that the Kardashian family displays. The millions of dollars spent on their appearance aren’t something to be celebrated. If you haven’t noticed, no amount will ever be enough because that extent of body obsession is a lifelong commitment; an exhausting, grueling commitment that bleeds a person of financial resources and mental capacity before they have a chance to use them anywhere else. This is not something anyone should aspire to replicate. When people are encouraged to max out their resources on looks, they enter a race with no finish line depleting a person of their energy with nothing left to support the health of their mind and body—two power sources naked to the human eye.
The Kardashians were born from a society that objectifies women and belittles their primary purpose into appearance. But they’re rewarded and distracted with attention, praise, and admiration—so the toxic cycle of sexist beauty standards continues, grows, and evolves.
Human beings are only given so much energy to spend, so when we devote it all outside, we don’t even touch the inside. But it’s true for everyone that you are much more powerful when you feel good versus when you look good. That’s because when you’re able to treat yourself better—you’ll treat others more kindly too.
Kardashian content does more harm than good—much more harm than good—especially to the impressionable young minds of today that are still developing in a world addicted to social media. Remember that feminism is not about blindly following women just because they’re women. Feminism is about equality, and Kardashian influence gets us further away from gender equality every day that their influence continues to grow. The Kardashians are the result of a system that judges and critiques women relentlessly, and they’ve let this system swallow them whole. While you can still have empathy for them as human beings, they actively perpetuate an ongoing toxic cycle that diminishes a woman’s worth to outer appearance with unreal beauty standards impossible to attain.
Don’t be distracted by toxic positivity. You are not bullying the Kardashians by holding them accountable for their ongoing actions. Not everything is positive (and that’s okay) because negative actions deserve accountability. If you need an example of bullying, read about 32-year-old Khloe Kardashian bullying a 19-year old teenage girl in 2016.
Enough is enough. End the cycle with you, protect your perception, and stop following the Kardashians.