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BUSINESS wasn’t always booming for the Kardashians.
From Kim, Khloe and Kourtney’s credit card to Kendall and Kylie’s “disrespectful” clothing line, here are their failed enterprises.
The Kardashians have a long history of business failuresCredit: Sears
From Kim Kardashian, Khloe Kardashian and Kourtney Kardashian’s credit cardCredit: Kardashian Kard
To Kendall Jenner and Kylie Jenner’s ‘disrespectful’ clothing lineCredit: KENDALL + KYLIE
CREDIT CARD CRISIS
Kim Kardashian, Khloe Kardashian, 37, and Kourtney Kardashian, 42, respectively have multi-million dollar brands, but the journey was filled with business bumps in the road.
One of the earliest was their Kardashian Prepaid MasterCard which instantly deposited backlash.
Unveiled in 2010, the prepaid card was targeted towards teens and featured the sisters’ faces printed on the front, but shocking unexpected hidden fees awaited.
The card cost between $60 and $100 just to activate, per Business Insider, who called the figure “unprecedented” and the product “perhaps the worst credit card ever.”
The monthly fee (after initial purchase) was another $8, and replacing a card cost $25 expedited, with even canceling an account costing $6.
The sisters were SUED by their partner company Mobile Resource Card for $75MILLION with mom Kris Jenner, 66, named in the “alleged breach of contract” but the case was dismissed, per The Hollywood Reporter.
The bank ended up reimbursing people, the Kardashians lost money and the card was terminated after one month, per CNN – though its imagery may never leave fans’ wallets mentally.
The Kardashian Kard was swiped from stores after 1 monthCredit: Kardashian Kard
More Kardashian ribbon-cutting roasts were chronicled by YouTuber Smokey Glow.
In 2011, Sears and Kim, Khloe and Kourtney teamed up for a clothing line, and “rosy” initial forecasts thought it would generate $200 million to $300M a year, per Fortune, with the items soon sold at 400 stores.
However, that year, the family was slammed for allegedly manufacturing some of their collections in foreign sweatshops, where the workers were “abused.”
“The Kardashians are in bed with some pretty bad people,” Charles Kernaghan, the executive director of the Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights, stated, per RadarOnline.
Li Qiang, the executive director of China Labor Watch, spoke to Radar about the alleged “human rights abuses” taking place:
“People like the Kardashians are producing their products in China … since the labor cost is so low compared to the United States and other countries,” he said.
Per Radar, the workers supposedly lived in “squalid factory-run dormitories filled with the stench of sewage while toiling up to 84 hours during seven-day weeks.”
The collection was pulled in 2015, per Fortune, though not before people had a chance to also shred the items via reviews.
A fashion reporter for the Wall Street Journal said on a leopard V-neck dress: “The print looked rubber-stamped on, and the fabric was full of static. It had the quality of a cheap Halloween costume.”
The fashion fails kept racking up in 2017 when the two youngest siblings Kylie, 24, and Kendall, 26 released a limited-edition, 15-piece collection of vintage-inspired tees via their Kylie + Kendall line with PacSun.
But their $125 shirts apparently weren’t such a bright use of iconography.
The collection featured a number of famous images of late rappers like Tupac Shakur and Notorious B.I.G. with Kendall + Kylie logos and photos of their faces superimposed on top.
“So who’s gonna start flaming Kendall and Kylie for putting their trash initials over Tupac’s face?”, wrote one Twitter user.
Their line of Rap Vs. Rock tees (bands like The Doors also made it to print) was even slammed by Biggie’s mother.
“I am not sure who told @kyliejenner and @kendalljenner that they had the right to do this,” the late rapper’s mother captioned a photo on Instagram, adding,
“The disrespect of these girls to not even reach out to me or anyone connected to the estate baffles me.
I have no idea why they feel they can exploit the deaths of 2pac and my Son Christopher to sell a t-shirt. This is disrespectful, disgusting, and exploitation at its worst!!!”
Kendall, who famously said her “spirit animal” was Tupac, released a statement hours later.
“These designs were not well thought out and we deeply apologize” she wrote to Twitter.
Kylie and Kendall’s tee shirts were ripped as ‘appropriation’Credit: KENDALL + KYLIE
And the shirt shame kept coming.
“Girls, you haven’t earned the right to put your face with musical icons. Stick to what you know…lip gloss” Sharon Osbourne slammed on Twitter over a photo of a tee that included her husband Ozzy Osbourne.
Then, according to The Fashion Law, photographer Michael Miller — who holds the rights to the images of Tupac that Kendall and Kylie used for their “vintage” tee collection — filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against the sisters.
He stated they “misappropriated and wrongfully exploited” his pics without permission, and was seeking $150,000 – which the two called “baseless” per AP.
After just a few months and a rap sheet of backlash, the line was removed.
Kim made a turn into tech with “Kim Kardashian: Hollywood” in 2014, which followed her 2D-sized life with customizable options and generated $200 million in annual revenue, according to Bloomberg, when it splashed into the iTunes app store.
However, Kim was hit with yet another creator who filed a $10 million lawsuit alleging that a Los Angeles-based video game developer Kung Fu Factory prepared the original proposal years earlier and was never paid.
Kung Fu Factory claimed to have conceived how the game would work and designed the overall look – even drawing various 2D mockups of Kim, Khloe and Kourtney.
The developer who claimed they made Kim’s app was ‘strung along for months’ and told it was ‘dead’Credit: Apple
In 2011, after being “strung along for months,” the plaintiff said they were told the “Kardashian deal was supposedly ‘dead.’” per The Hollywood Reporter.
Then in 2015, instead of pivoting away from their 2D world, it became a family affair.
Kendall, Kylie, Khloe and Kourtney all launched their own subscription-based apps, which charged $3 per month for a look inside each of their lives.
Fans were bothered by how each app was a separate sister subscription of $3 and Kendall would often go a whole month without posting any new content yet still charging fans.
Khloe also profited with a show within the app called “KhloCD” which was a spin on how she has “OCD,” though she’s never actually claimed she’s been diagnosed with OCD.
“Luh you so much Khlo but it’s not cool to make light of OCD, a legitimate and challenging disability. Can you pls rebrand this content? We love how organized you are! Just not the best terminology,” wrote one Twitter user.
In 2017 Khloe was sued for her Good American “bedazzled bodysuits” by a designer that she previously worked with.
Khloe actually borrowed pieces from the designer before a very similar one came out on her line, per People.
Designer Bleu quote tweeted Khloé’s Good American promotional video, writing, “When someone buys 1 of everything on your site, has you make them custom @dbleudazzled work, never posts it or wears it, then copies it.”
Then, Bleu’s lawyer released a 27-page letter that Khloe and her design team at Good American copied a number of her bedazzled bodysuit styles.
The letter included emails and text correspondences between the designer and Khloe’s then-stylist Monica Rose as well as Khloé’s assistant Alexa Okyle.
The designer, whose clients include Beyoncé, Lady Gaga, Lil Wayne and Cirque du Soleil performers, told WWD that her Debleudazzed business started on Etsy and now has grown to a six-person team with an annual sales income of $685,000.
“I was just hurt when I found that out,” she told WWD. “I was like, ‘Oh man, I don’t want to have to go through this.’ I speak up for myself. I’ve been doing this by myself and figuring this out for a long time.”
After Bleu’s initial Tweet, the denim brand responded quite interestingly: posting three images in a row on Instagram of Cher, Diana Ross, and Britney Spears all wearing sheer, glittery bodysuits with the caption, “Important to know your fashion history #nofrauds.”
They also released a statement saying the plaintiff’s claims were “flagrantly false and little more than a cheap publicity stunt. Ms. Bleu did not create the concept or design of a bodysuit with crystals – a fashion style that has been around for decades as evidenced by the fact that Cher has been wearing these styles for over 25 years,” per People
The $10M lawsuit was settled for an undisclosed amount, per RADAR.
KYLIE COSMETICS GETS LIPSMACKED
The copyright claims kept being applied when Kylie Cosmetics was slammed for their at-the-time iconic lip kits.
According to The Daily Beast, they “sold out within minutes of their online launch” in 2015.
While The Kylie Lip Jenner Challenge saw teenagers swell up their lips using glasses online to try to emulate the plump-pouted star.
Kylie sold half her beauty brand in 2019 pocketing $340M, washing her hands clean – but not before some issues.
British-based artist Sara Pope sued the youngest Kardashian for copying her “Temptation Neon” image – strawberry-lacquered, neon-lined lips – in promotional materials.
Kylie Jenner’s lip kits were smeared with copyright claimsCredit: Getty
Kylie’s art was very similar to Pope’s down to the lip-biting tooth that drew blood-like drips of paint.
Pope is the second artist to accuse Jenner of plagiarizing lip imagery.
The complaint noted that Pope’s art is “one of the top of Google searches for ‘neon lips’ at least since 2016,” according to the lawsuit.
Vlada Haggerty, a make-up artist, also called Jenner out on multiple occasions for copying her metallic dripping lip art for Kylie Cosmetics.
The Sun also reported that the workers at the factory that makes Kylie’s cosmetics were allegedly “forced to work in horrific conditions and were banned from looking at Kylie” when she visited the laboratory.
Two designers spoke out saying she ‘copied’ their designsCredit: Getty
POOSHED TOO FAR
In 2020, more business backlash took place when Kourtney hosted a POOSH virtual conference.
Sessions included “a morning matcha ceremony” a “self-hypnosis” session, “how to take the perfect selfie” class – as well as a “happy hour hosted by Kourtney and her sister Khloe.”
General admission was $25 but the “premium experience” tickets per People, of the virtual wellness festival, were a soaring $250 each.
The “Poosh Your Wellness Festival” also required virtual premium attendees to buy “gift bag” items in order to get the perks.
“I wish there was an option to buy just the premium ticket without the things! I just want a zoom session with Kourtney,” one Twitter user wrote.
Kim Kardashian, Khloe Kardashian and Kourtney Kardashian have a long history of business failuresCredit: Instagram/kimkardashian
Half-sisters Kendall Jenner and Kylie Jenner had to apologize for their ‘disrespectful’ t-shirtsCredit: Getty
They also once released a questionably authored novel that was ripped up by criticsCredit: Getty
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