Kim Kardashian's Kimono shapewear line faces criticism from Japan

'So many names out there, Kimono is already taken,' wrote one Twitter user in response to Kardashian's latest business venture

Kim Kardashian's newly-launched Skims Solutionwear line made $2m in 10 minutes. AP
Kim Kardashian's newly-launched Skims Solutionwear line made $2m in 10 minutes. AP

When it comes to income streams, Kim Kardashian has her finger in many pies. And, she's about to add another one to the mix: the reality star announced a new shapewear line on Twitter on Tuesday.

The website for the yet-to-launch underwear line says the items can "enhance, smooth, lift or sculpt", however the top responses to Kardashian's tweets on the new launch point out that the name's appropriation of traditional Japanese garb is misguided.

Yes, we're sure Kardashian and her branding experts like the fact that 'kimono' has the name Kim in it, but that may have blinded them to the fact that it might be offensive in Japan, a country that takes its traditions very seriously.

"Kimono is not underwear, Kimono is Japanese soul," reads the top reply to one of Kardashian's tweets:

The kimono has a storied history, and dates back to the 8th century: today, the garment is generally reserved for special occasions, such as weddings, funerals and festivals.

Different types of kimonos symbolise different things – styles depend on the wearer's gender, marital status and the type of event it's meant to be worn at.

"The kimono is a culturally significant Japanese garment. It is a prized possession to many Japanese families, handcrafted with skill and care," wrote Twitter user @superhirojesse in reply to Kardashian. "It would be great if we didn't use the word to talk about products that aren't made in the spirit of traditional Japanese garments."

Kardashian has been using the hashtag #KimonoBody to spread the news of her new launch, and one user replied simply with this picture:

However, some responses to Kim Kardashian's tweet about the new line were positive, and thanked her for launching shapewear that goes from sizes XXS to 4XL and is offered in nine shades (because, remember, people often call beige underwear 'flesh coloured' in a blanket manner, when it's actually the skin tone of some, not all).

Updated: June 26, 2019 09:02 PM

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