Bill’s on you, Kylie

Lauren McDermott, Contributing Writer

Kylie Jenner, the youngest self-made billionaire in the world, has enough to take care of the dinner bill every once in a while– or so her sisters joke. At only 22 years old, Jenner owns and operates the extremely popular and successful cosmetic brand Kylie Cosmetics, which has quickly become a staple of self-respecting Ulta stores and online shopping carts all across the world. These well-crafted cosmetics appeal not only to fans of Keeping Up With The Kardashians but also to make-up gurus around the world. Jenner recently appeared on the season 17 premiere of “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” with her mother, Kris Jenner, to discuss her accomplishments.

In a sneak-peak of the new episode that was released last Friday, Kylie Jenner admits that the rest of the Kardashian gang – Kim, Khloé, Kendall, and Kourtney, as well as Kardashian matriarch Kris Jenner – often poke fun at the young billionaire when it comes to paying for some of their more luxurious trips. “When we’re in a group chat talking about where we should go for a trip, they’re like, ‘Kylie? You going to pay for it?’” Kylie said in a Sept. 2 appearance on “Ellen.” “They just joke with me, just sister love,” she said. “They’re all really proud of me, for sure.” The Kardashian sisters really do stick together through thick and thin, despite the obstacles they face; while many celebrities’ fame comes from talent, I would argue the overarching talent of the Kardashian family is the love and support system each member gives one another when it comes down to it.

Kylie Jenner’s sisters took to social media and expressed their utmost encouragement of her this year after Forbes named her the world’s youngest billionaire in their annual 2019 ranking of the world’s wealthiest people. The young businesswoman has since become very passionate about the corporate experience, in part due to the success of her Kylie Cosmetics makeup brand. After her brand launched in 2015 – offering only three Lip Kits, a small operation when compared to the wide variety of wonderful products provided now – sales quickly grew through advertising on social media platforms like Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter and Kylie Jenner’s app. Two years later, the company began selling its products at Ulta Beauty, where its revenue climbed nine percent to a whopping $360 million. Not bad for a 22-year-old. Today, the brand’s value sits at around $900 million, as estimated by Forbes.

Kylie Jenner credits her exponential success to the internet and her loyal, Stormi-loving 146 million Instagram followers. “It’s the power of social media,” Kylie Jenner said in an interview with Forbes.  “I had such a strong reach before I was able to start anything. I didn’t expect anything. I did not foresee the future. But [the recognition] feels really good. That’s a nice pat on the back.” The meteoric success of Kylie Jenner’s company is illustrative of the impact of social media on our generation. Whether it’s keeping up with pop culture — or, more specifically, Keeping Up With the Kardashians’ Instagrams — we are all influenced by trends seen first on the internet around us. It is definitely important to remember that social media isn’t everything and to acknowledge all parts of it, both good and bad. Yet it is also important to recognize that it provides a platform for success and an opportunity to pursue one’s dreams, just as Kylie Jenner has.

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