Skim the brand's history from (NB)A to Z.
No matter how you feel about the famous KarJenner clan, there's no denying that Kim Kardashian is a major mogul. Out of all her endeavors, SKIMS just might be Kardashian's biggest success. From luxe collabs to major partnerships that might have dedicated sports fans scratching their heads and muttering, "What is SKIMS?"
SKIMS is a vibe, a lifestyle, a state of mind. Okay, fine, it's a shapewear, swim, and loungewear brand that blends Kardashian's professed love of minimalism with major trends. While the KarJenners have been called out for popularizing unattainable beauty standards, Kim Kardashian's SKIMS is an inclusive brand that offers a range of sizing not frequently seen in celeb-founded fashion lines.
Its site keeps models of all body types front and center, allowing shoppers to view products on women and (as of October 2023) men who look like them. Even more impressively, and unlike other brands that promise to extend sizes over time, SKIMS has focused on inclusive sizing from the beginning, making it something like the Fenty Beauty of foundational garments. SKIMS is also known for its celebrity-studded campaigns. Everyone from Kim Cattrall to Megan Fox (alongside Kourtney Kardashian) has posed in SKIMS. Billie Eilish even wore the brand in the "Lost Cause" music video. Suffice it to say, SKIMS's founder isn't the only famous name associated with it.
From its earliest days to its latest superstar partnership, here's everything you need to know about SKIMS.
2019: SKIMS Gets a Pre-Launch Rebrand
When Kardashian first announced her clothing line in 2019, it wasn't the SKIMS we know today. In June of that year, the mogul announced she'd been developing a shapewear brand, "Kimono," for more than a decade. While the line was praised for its inclusive range of shades and sizes—nine versions of nude in sizes XXS through 4XL—the internet had some thoughts on its name.
Finally I can share with you guys this project that I have been developing for the last year.
I’ve been passionate about this for 15 years.
Kimono is my take on shapewear and solutions for women that actually work.
Photos by Vanessa Beecroft pic.twitter.com/YAACrRltX3
— Kim Kardashian (@KimKardashian) June 25, 2019
Fans and detractors took issue with Kardashian naming her line of modern shapewear after a traditional Japanese garment. The Mayor of Kyoto even weighed in via an open letter addressed to Kardashian requesting that the mogul rename her brand. To her credit, Kardashian listened to the feedback. Roughly two weeks after her initial launch announcement, the reality star shared that Kimono would be no more.
My brands and products are built with inclusivity and diversity at their core and after careful thought and consideration, I will be launching my Solutionwear brand under a new name. I will be in touch soon. Thank you for your understanding and support always.
— Kim Kardashian (@KimKardashian) July 1, 2019
On August 26, 2019, Kardashian thanked her followers for their opinions and officially debuted her shapewear company's rebrand. Just like that, SKIMS was born.
2021: Fendi x SKIMS Breaks the Internet
SKIMS launches are known to sell out fast, but no one anticipated the SKIMS x Fendi capsule collection to fly off the shelves the way it did. "When we first launched Fendi, we were very worried about the much, much higher-priced product." Kardashian's business partner, SKIMS co-founder Jens Grede told The New York Times, "But it turned out that the highest-priced items sold out first.”
Not only did most of the 125 pieces, ranging in price from $100 to $4,200, sell out within the first 24 hours, but WWD reported that within the first minute of sales, the brands made a million dollars in profits.
The collaboration, launched on November 9, was such a success that the brands released a second drop the following month.
2021: SKIMS Goes for Gold
Teaming up with the NBA and WNBA isn't SKIMS' first dip into the athletic pond. In 2021, Kardashian announced—via Twitter—that SKIMS had been named the official underwear brand of the United States Olympic teams.
Showing off her particularly sharp business acumen, Kardashian SKIMS for Team USA collection wasn't just available to Olympic-level athletes, many of whom appeared in the collection's campaign imagery. The loungewear, briefs, and sports bras were also available to purchase by fashion and sports fans alike.
2022: SKIMS Does Swim
In 2022, SKIMS debuted its take on swimwear with Kardashian modeling many of the brand's newest offerings. "Buying swimwear should be fun and easy, yet so many women feel daunted by it," Kardashian wrote in a press release at the time of the launch. "I wanted to change that and make the process as simple as possible by providing a full Swim wardrobe—both for in and out of the water."
Grede seconded the focus on comfort, telling InStyle that it was essential for SKIMS Swim to "focus on fit, comfort, and versatility." Featuring one and two-piece suits as well as accessories, SKIMS Swim sold out at lightning speed (like many of the brand's other collections).
2023: SKIMS Is Valued at $4 Billion
In July, Kardashian and Grede announced in an interview with The New York Times that SKIMS had raised an additional $270 million in funding from investors, bringing the company's value up to a whopping $4 billion. The interview confirmed something SKIMS shoppers likely already knew: The brand is golden. In the last year alone, 11 million people have signed up for waitlists in the hopes of procuring some of the brand's most popular items, Grede told the NYT.
2023: SKIMS Debuts Menswear
On October 26, SKIMS launched three menswear collections with a campaign starring NBA All-Star Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Brazilian soccer player, Neymar, San Francisco 49ers Defensive Nick Bosa, and lots of rippling abs. SKIMS menswear feels a bit like a return to the brand's elevated basics roots. Each of the three collections—Cotton, Stretch, and Sport—features briefs, tees, tanks, and socks in Kardashian's signature skin tone and neutral colors. Leggings and socks are also included and, may we just say, we're very into it.
2023: SKIMS Hits the Courts
In the same month that the brand launched its menswear collections, SKIMS teamed up with the NBA, WNBA, and USA Basketball. As the official underwear partner of the NBA and WNBA—a sentence that feels strange to write, but makes sense when you consider the juggernaut that SKIMS has become in its four short years of existence — SKIMS and, by extension, Kardashian, will work with both sports organizations to "generate excitement and demand." According to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, fans can expect to "see the partnership come to life at future marquee events, including NBA All-Star and the NBA In-Season Tournament."
2023: SKIMS' Most Sparkling Collab
Less than a month after launching menswear and taking over the basketball world, SKIMS brought its fans its most blinged-out collaboration yet: Swarovski x SKIMS. The drop includes SKIMS staples like bodysuits, bras, and curve-hugging maxi dresses, but it also branches out into new territory with belly and body chains, a trend we've giddily been watching take off all year.
Ranging in price from $3,300 for a crystal-laden body chain, to $248 for a cotton bralette, the collection is already on its way to being completely sold out, less than a day after its launch on November 7.
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