People just love a good challenge on social media, even if the results are less than desirable (which is an understatement for what you’re about to read). We’ve all heard of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, where people recorded themselves having ice-cold buckets of water dumped on them to help promote awareness and raise money for Lou Gehrig's disease, or the No Make Up Challenge, where girls post pics of themselves makeup-free to promote a healthy self-image. But have you heard of the #KylieJennerLipChallenge? No? Well, here’s what you need to know.
Teens, females and males, white and Black alike, are using shot glasses, cups, bottles, etc. as suction devices to achieve a full pout like Kylie Jenner, then posting pics and video clips of their results online. If you've searched the hashtag, then you can see it’s pretty disturbing. And what exactly is this promoting? I’m not sure, but it proves that once again people will go to bizarre lengths to look like the Kardashian-Jenner clan.
Severe mouth/lip bruising from suction, ripped lips from glass breaking from the extreme pressure used and horrible pain are the consequences of trying this dangerous DIY lip-plumping method. Obviously, there are so many things wrong with this. But I figure I’ll just state them anyway, since there seems to be folks out there who do not see the obvious:
1. Let me repeat. This is dangerous. D-A-N-G-E-R-O-U-S. Lips can stay swollen for hours and bruising can last several days. While I want to laugh at some of these videos/pics of teens trying to super-size their lips, I have to SMH when I think about why they are doing this.
2. Society’s perception of beauty. That’s why teen after teen is taking up this challenge, even after seeing the gruesome effects, because big lips are “in” now. When it comes to clothes, hairstyles and makeup, it’s cool to stay on-trend, if that’s your choice. But when it comes to lips, this is taking it too far. If you really happen to like the look, so be it. There are plenty of safe ways to get fuller lips without harming yourself. See #MyFirstPoutyLip to read up on my experience trying to perfect my pout, along with product details. Totally safe, and I promise you won’t end up looking like a patient on Botched.
3. I want to call this cultural appropriation, but then again kids of all races are trying the #KylieJennerLipChallenge, so that tells me these kids really don’t read. Since the beginning of recorded history, mainstream society has frowned upon the physical attributes of minorities. Darker features, textured hair, and yes, bigger lips. So finally, these things have become “cool,” mostly thanks to fair-skinned beauties sporting them. This whole crazy challenge is making a mockery of it all. Like, can we just have something?
4. Kardashian Syndrome. The symptoms? Becoming a devotee of all things Kim Kardashian-related, including (but not limited to) cardinal directions (especially north and west), outfits comprised of head-to-toe neutrals, Jenners, posing nude, contour, reality TV, spinoffs of spinoffs, etc. Yeah, I just made that up. My point: Do not become a Kardashian/Jenner robot desperately following every move these girls make. Yes, they’re beautiful, but half that beauty is based on their confidence to do, wear and look as they please. Try it. People respect someone with a mind — and even a personal style — of their own.
When you really think about it, it’s really sad. There’s even a whole Instagram account, @KylieJennerLipChallenge, dedicated to the challenge that has more than 1,000 followers and counting. This movement is a fail, and I hope this spreads just a little awareness of the perils of hopping on the bandwagon. Do better, kiddos.
The opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of BET Networks.
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(Photos from top: Jason Merritt/Getty Images, KylieJennerLipChallenge via Instagram)
For the past 10 years, Yusef has been dictating all of the beauty trends we emulate via his most famous client, none other than Rihanna. He started out his career as a performer, but he ended up behind the scenes. In Hairstory, he details his rise in the industry from aspiring singer to creative directing the hair for Fenty x Puma.