The Backlash Over Kendall Jenner’s Mango Ad

We all know that most of the things the Kardashian/Jenner clan does are always going to cause a shock factor. But most recently, this week to be exact, Mango announced that Kendall Jenner will be the brand’s new face. The is a milestone for Jenner since Cara Delevingne and Kate Moss once graced the Mango campaigns. Exciting right?

No, the campaign is getting a bit of a backlash from customers because the campaign is called “Tribal Spirit” and it features apparel designs inspired by the African savanna.

In the past few months; for example Valentino’s SS13 collection (models sported cornrows), campaigns have used cultural references which some are referring to as insulting. The point here is, could this all be taken out of context? Designers use many heritages as a backdrop to their campaigns and get their inspirations with the notion of paying homage; not racism. The brand referring to it as “tribal” is causing an outrage with Jenner and Mango fans. The brand felt Jenner fit in well and thought that “she was the best model to embody this trend” per Mango vice president Daniel López in an interview with WWD

Because Jenner is a “white” face in an African themed campaign, some are calling it racist and culturally insensitive. Sure, it could have been called less “tribal”, but let’s calm down here people, it’s fashion. It’s not a true art exhibit where there are white people proclaiming to be African, it’s just a fashion campaign that is filled with fringed skirts and flowy cargo pants that resemble a late 1930’s African Safari film. We have to remember, things like this cannot always be taken out of context and blown up into something that really has bearing.

The brand is striving to vamp up it’s marketing efforts to keep up with fast-fashion, and plans to reveal a new mini-campaign; one with a different face each month for the spring season. New ads will drop in February, March, April and May. This particular campaign will run in the March issues of certain publications, but as of this time it is uncertain which ones they will be.



Adrielyn Christi

Senior US Fashion Editor and PR for Trend Prive Magazine. Finding the latest and greatest in fashion and to have the ability to share it with the world is truly my passion.