Kim Kardashian has had a career spanning multiple industries. Now, she’s is inching toward a net worth of $2 billion, according to Forbes calculations.
Kim Kardashian’s net worth is reportedly $1.7 billion as of January 2024, according to Forbes.
She just got back into the cosmetics game with the launch of a new makeup line, SKKN by Kim.
From founding beauty companies and clothing lines to her own private equity firm, here’s a look at the career of Kim Kardashian.
Kim Kardashian is one of the most recognized names of her generation.
She got her start on reality television with the hit show “Keeping Up With The Kardashians” and leveraged her fame — and massive social media following — into a consumer empire that spans across beauty, fashion, and fragrances.
Over the years, she’s launched a range of highly popular brands from her shapewear line Skims to her beauty line SKKN by Kim, which released a new line of cosmetics on Friday.
These days, Kardashian is worth around $1.7 billion, according to Forbes. Take a closer look at how she built a multi billion-dollar business empire.
AP Photo/Kevork Djansezian, Pool
Her family’s first moments in the spotlight were when the patriarch of the family, Robert Kardashian Sr., was in the public eye as O.J. Simpson’s lawyer.
And Norwood’s mom alleged that Kardashian (and her siblings) ran up more than $120,000 in credit card charges her card without permission, according to People.
The Kardashians denied the allegations in a statement to the outlet saying that the charges against them were “meritless.”
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Kardashian also landed a gig as actress Lindsay Lohan’s stylist in her early years, according to Cosmopolitan.
Her passion for business started in high school when she was working at a boutique and in her dad’s office, according to Variety. During that time she discovered eBay and her love of online shopping, Kardashian told the outlet.
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“I sold every pair on eBay for $2,500. I became so obsessed with seeing that return, I would sell off the things I wouldn’t be wearing,” she told Variety.
“Everyone had to have them,” Kim told Variety.
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The concept behind the store — a sort of consignment shop — was pretty similar to Kim’s love for reselling.
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Kim announced they’d be shutting DASH doors in April 2018 as the sisters continue to work on their own brands and families, according to Fashionista.
“I was thinking, this might not last very long, but we’ll grow a great business and expand online,” she told Variety. “I thought it would be great press. I didn’t think it would turn into what it turned into.”
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In 2018, Complex ranked “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” one of the best reality TV shows of all time, behind only MTV’s “The Real World.”
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In February 2007, a sex tape with Kim and Ray J — Brandy Norwood’s brother whom Kim dated from 2003 to 2006 — surfaced and made its way into the news, according to Cosmopolitan. Kim sued the entertainment company distributing the tape at the time. She reportedly settled the case for $5 million, according to NBC2.
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“I think that’s how I was definitely introduced to the world,” she said on Oprah’s Next Chapter.
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She said she was so nervous that she had to sit down with the magazine’s founder and then-editor-in-chief, Hugh Hefner, who she credited with helping convince her to pose, according to People.
In a promotional video, she calls it “so high-fashion and so stylized, it’s very me.” Most of the outfits have an “’80s, futuristic” look, as described by Kim herself.
She said she developed it because people were continually asking her how she kept her curves in shape and that while working with a few trainers, she found a routine that worked for her, and built the videos around the method.
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It provided members with a curated selection of accessories and shoes for around $40 a month.
By 2012 the service had acquired 10 million members and expanded into women’s clothing, too, according to TechCrunch.
In 2013, the service merged with one of its biggest competitors, rival fashion subscription service JustFab.
“Kourtney and Khloe Take Miami”/E!
The series lasted for three seasons — but Khloe headlined season two instead of Kim, although Kim did appear in the season.
“Deep in the Valley”/Persistent Entertainment
The romantic comedy had a 26% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes. It was produced by Persistent Entertainment.
It’s a self-tanning gel created by the three sisters and was — at the time — exclusive to Sephora and cost $34, according to Glamour. In 2019, there was a tube going for $79 on Amazon.
“We used notes of gardenia, which I love, and as the scent develops, it almost smells creamy if that makes any sense,” Kardashian told InStyle. “People sometimes ask me what I’m wearing, and it’s kind of weird when I’m like, ‘Um, it’s Kim Kardashian.'”
And reality television viewers got to watch what happened in Kourtney & Kim Take New York.
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The pair lived in a suite at the Gansevoort Hotel with Kourtney, her then-boyfriend Scott Disick, and their son Mason Disick, according to Cosmopolitan.
The event reportedly brought in $18 million in licensing fees, endorsement deals, and broadcast deals for Kim, according to NBC2. Just 72 days later they were divorced.
A portion of the proceeds reportedly went to St Judes Children’s Research Hospital, according to Cosmopolitan.
“Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen”/Bravo TV/YouTube
“I can’t believe I did that,” she said on “Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen,” but she had fun.
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The line of costume jewelry never took off with customers and fizzled out.
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They came under fire with the line when they were accused of working with abusive employers to make their clothes, according to StyleCaster.
By 2013, the brand was said to be “flopping big-time,” and Sears dropped prices on items to less than $10. It officially folded in 2015, according to StyleCaster.
In April 2011 she launched Gold, her second fragrance, according to Cosmopolitan.
There were only 979 bottles sold — 1,000 were made, but 20 were reserved for her bridal party and one for herself on her wedding day, according to Cosmopolitan.
The launch party in Hollywood benefitted Dress for Success, a charity organization, according to the The Hollywood Reporter.
Screenshot via Khrome Beauty
The name was changed to Kardashian Beauty after another established makeup company called Kroma Beauty took the sisters and their lawyers to court, according to Teen Vogue.
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“This was a licensing deal,” the employee told Fashionista. “Even without the lawsuits, Khroma likely wouldn’t have been a hit, anyway. I think the subsequent folding of Kardashian Beauty, which is what Khroma evolved into, proved that.”
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The book functions like a diary of Kardashian’s relationship to her own face — and beauty. “Getting my hair and makeup done has become a daily routine,” Kardashian writes in a caption of Selfish. “I have become family with my glam teams.” The book landed on the New York Times Bestseller list, according to Cosmopolitan.
She wrote, “For the past few years Kanye and I have made almost all of our kids clothes and we have collaborated on a new kids line!”
The entire first collection was reportedly inspired by Calabasas and included dresses, chokers, hats, sweatpants, and more, according to Vogue. Later seasons included itty-bitty Yeezys, the luxury lifestyle sneakers developed by Kanye West and Adidas, according to HighSnobiety.
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The first product: a $48 contour kit that sold out in minutes and racked up more than $13 million in sales, according to Fashionista.
And her minimalist approach to the marketing process worked in her favor. She didn’t spend money on traditional advertising — instead, she turned to her devoted social media following.
Kim Kardashian West/Instagram
People bought her perfume without even smelling it first, according to TMZ.
The line was originally called Kimono. The name generated backlash as some audiences said it disrespected Japanese culture. Kim changed it to SKIMS around two months after the initial product announcement.
In January 2020, Kim announced that the line will be sold at Nordstrom beginning in February. The department store is the first traditional retail outlet to sell SKIMS.
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“”I’ve seen some comments from people who are saying it’s my privilege or my money that got me here, but that’s not the case. One person actually said I should ‘stay in my lane.’ I want people to understand that there is nothing that should limit your pursuit of your dreams, and the accomplishment of new goals,” Kardashian wrote in the caption of a photo she posted on Instagram.
Johnson — a 63-year-old grandmother who was serving a life sentence for non-violent drug offenses — was granted clemency by President Donald Trump shortly after he met Kardashian.
“”I just felt like the system could be so different and I wanted to fight to fix it and, if I knew more, I could do more,” Kardashian previously said.
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She even said that she’ll sometimes take on sponsored Instagram posts — ones that she wouldn’t have otherwise considered — in order to fund her efforts, according to CNBC. And she’s said her 10-year plan is to open a law firm to help with prison reform.
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“I failed this exam 3 times in 2 years, but I got back up each time and studied harder and tried again until I did it!!!” she wrote.
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She said the private equity fund that would focus on investments in consumer and media companies along with the hospitality, luxury and digital and e-commerce sectors.
Kardashian co-founded the firm with Jay Sammons, a former partner at Carlyle Group, who previously invested in popular brands like Beats By Dre and streetwear company Supreme.
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SKKN came just a year after Kardashian shut down KKW Beauty. In an Instagram story at the time of launch, Kardashian credited her former partner, Ye, for helping her conceptualize the brand.
Kardashian said in an Instagram reel that the new line was fueled by the customer requests for color cosmetics on the SKKN account.
“In developing SKKN by Kim Makeup, my goal was not only to create universally-flattering cosmetic essentials but also to ensure our products are clean, hydrating and improve the look and feel of skin with every year,” Kardashian wrote in a post on Instagram.
Kardashian’s return to the color cosmetics game also comes months after she was in talks to buy back the minority stake of SKKN that she sold to Coty in 2021, according to The Wall Street Journal.
And with the makeup category growing at rate of 6% according to projections by McKinsey — investors say its a smart move. “It feels somewhat opportunistic to me given the growth of makeup right now but not surprising to me at all,” Rich Gersten, founder of venture firm True Beauty Ventures told Business Insider. SKKN by Kim did not respond to Business Insider’s request for comment.