Skims and Good American — Not So American After All?

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The Kardashian-Jenner clan is no stranger to controversy — in every aspect of their lives.

In addition to their long-running reality television show, Keeping Up With the Kardashians, all of the Kardashian sisters have found success with their own business ventures: Kim has KKW Beauty and a mobile game; Kylie has the wildly successful Kylie Cosmetics and Kylie Skin lines; Kourtney runs a lifestyle company, Poosh; Khloe released a health line along with her show, Revenge Body; Kendall has her own brand of tequila; the list goes on (and on, and on…).

Emma Grede and Khloe Kardashian are the co-founders of the inclusive fashion brand Good AmericanEmma Grede and Khloe Kardashian are the co-founders of the inclusive fashion brand Good American (Credit: Derrick Salters / WENN)

Recently, two of these business forays, Khloe’s denim brand, Good American, and Kim’s shapewear company, Skims, have come under fire due to the location that the clothes are made in.

The controversy began in 2018 when it was revealed that the Good American brand may not be so American after all. When Khloe’s denim brand debuted in 2016, she was proud to announce that all of the jeans were 100% American-made.

The brand found quick success, becoming the most successful denim launch in history, making $1 million on the day of release.

At the time, the Good American website touted that the jeans were “Made in Los Angeles”. The statement continued: “GOOD AMERICAN is dedicated to having a positive impact on the community. Pledging to sustain the manufacturing of jeans in the United States and supporting charities that empower girls to realize their true potential.”

Kim Kardashian in a flesh-toned bra and panties set from her SKIMS cotton collectionKim Kardashian in a flesh-toned bra and panties set from her SKIMS cotton collection in a billboard advertisement in New York City on June 20, 2021 (Credit: MEGA / WENN)

Good American jeans are not cheap — prices range anywhere from $99 to $250 at Nordstrom — but the reasoning was that American-made jeans are more expensive because the labor is not being outsourced.

However, internet sleuths found that the brand was not entirely American. The jeans were constructed in the United States, but the materials were imported from across the globe.

In 2018, the company revealed that they were ditching their pledge to be “100% American-made”. Moving forward, many of the products were outsourced for manufacturing.

Founder and CEO of Good American Emma Grede (R) posing with fashion designer Leomie AndersonFounder and CEO of Good American Emma Grede (R) posing with fashion designer Leomie Anderson (Credit: Derrick Salters / WENN)

“When we decided that for reasons of cost, which is a top priority for our customer, we were going to start making some things overseas. Because our name is Good American, we saw the irony,” said Good American’s co-founder Emma Grede, who is the daughter of immigrants from Jamaica and Trinidad.

“We pulled some ad space, posted to our Instagram and Facebook and said, ‘This is what we’re doing, we won’t just sneak a label that said it was made in Turkey or China.’ We got very little backlash.”

Though the brand did try their best to be transparent, the idea that there was “very little backlash” was untrue. Many fans were upset that the brand switched up one of the platforms that their brand was built upon, and others brought up the problematic nature of the jeans being manufactured in Turkey.

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, the Islamist and openly corrupt President of Turkey, refuses to recognize the 1915 massacres of Armenians in the Ottoman EmpireRecep Tayyip Erdoğan, the Islamist and openly corrupt President of Turkey, refuses to recognize the 1915 massacres of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire (Credit: ATP / WENN)

One Twitter user expressed these concerns, posting a photo of the tag of their Good American jeans with the caption, “@khloekardashian got my first pair of @goodamerican jeans and I never felt so confused. 1. Say what? Turkey? .. 2. Umm, wait aren’t you Armenian?? 3. But wait “Good American but made in Turkey” … makes sense”

The Kardashian sisters — Kim, Khloe, and Kourtney — all have Armenian heritage through their late father Robert Kardashian. After World War I, an estimated 1.5 million ethnic Armenians were systematically murdered in the Ottoman Empire, what is now Turkey.

Fans could not understand why Good American, a brand founded by a woman of Armenian descent, would even consider manufacturing products in a place where the genocide of their ancestors had been committed.

Many jeans from American TV personality Khloé Kardashian's denim-focused brand Good American are made in TurkeyMany jeans from American TV personality Khloé Kardashian’s denim-focused brand Good American are made in Turkey (Credit: WENN)

In fact, Kim Kardashian has been vocal online about her support for the Armenian people, even calling on the United States government to recognize the atrocities committed against her ancestors during the Armenian genocide.

This is why it was so shocking when it was revealed that many items from Kim’s popular lounge and shapewear clothing brand, Skims (which is worth an estimated $1.6 billion), were actually made in Turkey.

Fans were outraged. One Twitter user captioned a photo of one of the Skims items made in Turkey, wondering if Kim was even aware that her products were being manufactured there, saying, “Did you know @skims are made in Turkey, @KimKardashian? Every dollar contributed to the Turkish economy enables its denial of the Armenian Genocide, its policy of blockading Armenia, and its support of Azerbaijan/attack on Armenians of Artsakh. #BoycottTurkishProducts”

Of Armenian and Scottish ancestry, Kim Kardashian has been criticized for producing Skims shapewear in TurkeyOf Armenian and Scottish ancestry, Kim Kardashian has been criticized for producing Skims shapewear in Turkey (Credit: Skims)

Even the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) called Kim out for her hypocrisy. Though the organization first thanked her for her support of the Armenian community, they then told her to consider moving her factory: “We saw that you are making some @skims products in Turkey. Please consider making them in Armenia which is known for great craftsmanship & service.”

The Armenian National Committee of America asks Kim Kardashian to stop producing Skims shapewear in TurkeyThe Armenian National Committee of America asks Kim Kardashian to stop producing Skims shapewear in Turkey (Credit: Twitter)

The next day, Kim went on damage control, sending out a series of tweets to attempt to justify her reasoning behind Skims being manufactured in Turkey.

“When I first began dreaming of owning my own shapewear company, I knew I wanted every piece to be made the best way possible; from the finest materials; starting from design stage through to creation, testing, innovation & fit,” Kim wrote.

“We consulted with experts and searched globally for the best in class options, some which was [sic] found in Turkey,” she continued. “We believe strongly against discrimination of any kind; against anyone or any nation based on the past.”

Kim Kardashian claims not to have been aware of where Skims shapewear products were producedKim Kardashian claims not to have been aware of where Skims shapewear products were produced (Credit: WENN/Avalon)

Kim went on to say that she would consider moving production to Armenia, tweeting, “I will be visiting Armenia in the next 2 weeks and hope to seek ways I can help increase trade and hopefully create jobs for Armenians which includes @skims production there in the future.”

Kim did make good on this pledge, because the next month, in an October 2019 interview with Reuters, she said, “I’m really excited because tonight I have a meeting to talk about future investments and how to open up a factory here and how to really bring business to Armenia.”

In that same interview, she revealed that fans were right —she was not initially aware that her products were being manufactured in Turkey — saying, “I actually wasn’t really a part of production at the beginning.”

She said that she was presented with ‘tons of samples from many different factories’ but failed to do her research, “I picked quality. I didn’t ask like ‘Well, where’s each one made?’ and no one thought to tell me until after production.”

Unless money is involved, Kris Jenner, Kourtney Kardashian, Khloe Kardashian, and Kim Kardashian West seem to care about the Armenian genocideUnless money is involved, Kris Jenner, Kourtney Kardashian, Khloe Kardashian, and Kim Kardashian West seem to care about the Armenian genocide (Credit: Nicky Nelson / WENN)

If the political blunders of Good American and Skims prove anything, it’s that the Kardashians are really only concerned about one thing: dollar signs.

In May 2017, the Kardashian sisters stepped out in stylish heels to celebrate Cinco de Mayo at Casa Vega restaurant. Khloe, Kourtney, and Kim served casual looks paired with sexy shoes from DSquared2, Gucci, and Yeezy.

1. Khloe Kardashian in sexy jeans

The then 32-year-old reality star and entrepreneur looked like a walking advertisement for her Good American label.

Khloe Kardashian in a white long-sleeved top, Good American “Good Waist Crop” jeans, and DSquared2 "Riri" sandals in light blue water snakeskinKhloe Kardashian in a white long-sleeved top, Good American “Good Waist Crop” jeans, and DSquared2 “Riri” sandals in light blue water snakeskin (Credit: WENN / Michael Wright)

Khloe donned a white long-sleeved top tucked into tight high-waisted jeans that displayed her curves. She wore the “Good Waist Crop” jeans, which feature a gap-proof waistband, light wash denim, and an ultra-skinny fit.

O.J. Simpson’s rumored daughter styled them with a skinny brown belt, Porsche Design aviator sunglasses, and DSquared2 “Riri” sandals.

Khloe Kardashian wears tight high-waisted jeans outside Casa Vega restaurant in IndioKhloe Kardashian wears tight high-waisted jeans outside Casa Vega restaurant in Indio, California, on May 6, 2017 (Credit: WENN / Michael Wright)

Khloe’s “Riri” sandals come in a pretty light blue shade and feature water snakeskin. These shoes also have open toes, branded insoles, lace-up fastening, and high stiletto heels.

DSquared2 “Riri” Sandals in Light Blue Water Snakeskin, $1,220

DSquared2 “Riri” Sandals in Light Blue Water Snake Skin

DSquared2 “Riri” Sandals in Light Blue Water Snake Skin

DSquared2 “Riri” Sandals in Light Blue Water Snake Skin
DSquared2 “Riri” Sandals in Light Blue Water Snake Skin

A few days before her Casa Vega lunch date with her sisters, Khloe strolled through LAX in Gianvito Rossi boots.

Khloe Kardashian pairs a long black coat with a distressed top and skinny jeansKhloe Kardashian pairs a long black coat with a distressed top and skinny jeans (Credit: WENN / Michael Wright)

She styled them with a long black coat over a distressed top and skinny jeans.

Khloe Kardashian wearing an all-black ensemble with Gianvito Rossi suede over-the-knee boots at LAXKhloe Kardashian wearing an all-black ensemble with Gianvito Rossi suede over-the-knee boots (Credit: WENN / Michael Wright)

The “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” star also accessorized with Porsche Design aviator shades and a Louis Vuitton backpack.

Khloe Kardashian rocks Porsche Design aviator sunglasses and a Louis Vuitton backpackKhloe Kardashian rocks Porsche Design aviator sunglasses and a Louis Vuitton backpack (Credit: WENN / Michael Wright)

Khloe Kardashian in knee-high Gianvito Rossi black suede bootsKhloe Kardashian in knee-high Gianvito Rossi black suede boots (Credit: WENN / Michael Wright)

Khloe Kardashian in black boots at Los Angeles International AirportKhloe Kardashian in black boots at Los Angeles International Airport on April 29, 2017 (Credit: WENN / Michael Wright)

Her Gianvito Rossi over-the-knee suede boots feature pointed toes, concealed side zip closures, and covered stiletto heels.

Gianvito Rossi Suede Cuissard Boots, $2,095

Gianvito Rossi Suede Cuissard Boots
Gianvito Rossi Suede Cuissard Boots

2. Kourtney Kardashian in bodysuit

Meanwhile, Kourtney went braless during her Cinco de Mayo lunch date with her sisters.

Kourtney Kardashian in a House of CB “Luca” bodysuit outside Casa Vega restaurantKourtney Kardashian in a House of CB “Luca” bodysuit outside Casa Vega restaurant in Indio, California, on May 6, 2017 (Credit: WENN / Michael Wright)

She wore the House of CB “Luca” bodysuit, which features a sleeveless design, a seamless fit, and a low back. Kourtney tucked it into her silk Gucci trousers.

Kourtney Kardashian wearing a House of CB "Luca" bodysuit, Gucci silk pants, and Gucci red patent leather sandalsKourtney Kardashian wearing a House of CB “Luca” bodysuit, Gucci silk pants, and Gucci red patent leather sandals (Credit: WENN / Michael Wright)

These off-white pants feature an elasticated waistband, a straight-leg silhouette, and a relaxed fit. They also have the luxury brand’s signature green and red stripes on the sides.

Kourtney Kardashian shows off her feet in Gucci red patent leather sandalsKourtney Kardashian shows off her feet in Gucci red patent leather sandals (Credit: WENN / Michael Wright)

The 38-year-old television personality and businesswoman punctuated her look with red Gucci sandals. These open-toed shoes feature glossy patent leather, slender straps, and high stiletto heels.

Gucci Stiletto Sandals in Red Patent Leather, $695

Gucci Stiletto Sandals in Red Patent Leather

Gucci Stiletto Sandals in Red Patent Leather

Gucci Stiletto Sandals in Red Patent Leather
Gucci Stiletto Sandals in Red Patent Leather

3. Kim Kardashian in Levi’s skinny jeans

Kim’s look flaunted her assets and proudly showed off her husband’s Yeezy Season 4 lace-up boots.

Kim Kardashian wears a sleeveless top while getting into her carKim Kardashian wears a sleeveless top while getting into her car (Credit: WENN / Michael Wright)

Like Kourtney, she went braless in a tight black sleeveless top tucked into Levi’s skinny jeans.

Kim Kardashian in sexy tight jeans outside Casa Vega restaurantKim Kardashian in sexy tight jeans outside Casa Vega restaurant in Indio, California, on May 6, 2017 (Credit: WENN / Michael Wright)

Her shoes aren’t visible in the photos, but she wore the Yeezy Season 4 stretch canvas boots in black suede. These shoes feature pointed toes, covered stiletto heels, tonal hardware, and a lace-up design.

Yeezy Season 4 Lace-Up Suede Boots in True Onyx

Yeezy Season 4 Lace-Up Suede Boots in True Onyx

Yeezy Season 4 Lace-Up Suede Boots in True Onyx

Yeezy Season 4 Lace-Up Suede Boots in True Onyx

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