Kylie Jenner ‘used her savings’ to start Kylie Cosmetics when she was 16 years old


In 2018, Kylie Jenner covered Forbes Magazine to highlight the success of Kylie Cosmetics, the lipstick company which she started as a teenager in her mother’s kitchen. A year later, Forbes declared that Kylie was the “youngest self-made billionaire in history” because of Kylie Cosmetics. Later, we learned that many of those Forbes hype pieces were made out of sugary PR and lies as Kris Jenner tried to make Kylie’s company more attractive to buyers. But by then, Kylie had already sold off a majority stake in her company to Coty for $600 million.

Throughout it all, people debated the “self-made” label given to Kylie. Is she really self-made if she was a reality star since her tween years? Was she really self-made if her older sisters were mega-famous for years beforehand? Is she really self-made if she already had a built-in social media audience because of KUWTK? Well, Kylie and Kris always argued that Kylie was “self-made” in the sense of “she used her own money to start the company.” Which is true-ish. Kylie used her savings – from appearing on KUWTK – to start the company:

Kylie Jenner is a self-made billionaire for a reason. Momager Kris Jenner revealed that the 23-year-old beauty mogul was forced to use her own savings to launch Kylie Cosmetics in 2014.

“I said, ‘Well Kylie, you have a savings that you’ve earned from doing “KUWTK” for all these years,’” Kris said in the first of a three-part series called “Inside Kylie Cosmetics: The Beginning.”

“‘You’re gonna have to use your own money if you really want to make this work, because that’s gonna be your motivation and your drive,’” Jenner, 65, said she told her daughter, who was 17 at the time.

Kris recalled when 16-year-old Kylie first discussed what would become Kylie Cosmetics. “This is like a mother’s dream that somebody’s figured it out this young,” said Kris. “She said, ‘I want the be in the beauty business, and I know exactly what I want my product to be’.”

The YouTube mini-series comes amid a total overhaul in branding after Seed Beauty — the incubator company responsible for launching Kylie Cosmetics as well as KKW Beauty — sued new parent company, Coty, in June 2020 for stealing trade secrets. Jenner recently relaunched all of her products, switching to completely new, vegan formulas for not only her lip kits but also glosses, eyeshadows, blushes and more products. She also announced a forthcoming Kylie Baby brand in addition to her Kylie Skin offshoot.

[From Page Six]

I actually think Kris Jenner did give Kylie good advice – if you want to start a company at that young age, use the money you have and it will give you “skin in the game.” You’ll care more about what you’re trying to build and you’ll learn so much more along the way. But of course, there’s the conversation (yet again) about how much access, wealth, connections and willing investors Kylie already had as a 16-year-old! Self-made? Eh.


Photos courtesy of Kylie Cosmetics.

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50 Responses to “Kylie Jenner ‘used her savings’ to start Kylie Cosmetics when she was 16 years old”

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    Smh. I was expected to work starting my junior year of high school- evening/nights and weekends. And I did, from then until the end of college when I started looking for a more career-oriented job. I did envy my friends who didn’t have to pay a thing towards tuition or housing, but I didn’t fault them for it. I would firmly put Kylie into the camp of those who didn’t have to work. I’m sure appearing on camera from a young age takes its toll, but it’s not like she had to produce or maintain anything for the money she got. She wasn’t like a child actor- it’s a freaking reality show.

    • Robyn says:

      This was me, too. I’ve had a job since I was 14, but I had to use my “savings” to pay for annoying things like food, shelter, clothing, and putting myself through university.

      That they continue to perpetuate these LIES is infuriating and not aspirational in the least.

    • Christine says:

      Same. Grocery stores, Ace Hardware, and Target got me through high school and college. I was fortunate in that my family made sure tuition, room, board, and textbooks was paid for, but anything else was on me. I’m not sure who they are trying to fool with this nonsense, but COME ON!

  2. Gil says:

    Rob Kardashian had the means to become “self-made” but he invested in stupid socks. I know these people have privileges all the way from the cradle but even them manage to blow up everything. We have to give some credit to Kylie for reading the times and how use her platform to start her own company.

    • Northerngirl says:

      I agree.

    • LillyfromLillooet says:

      Yep. Given the tragedy of people like Tori Spelling, who made her own money and then spent it away, we do have to give credit to those who used advantages to build something successful.

    • Yup, Me says:

      It’s also . . . I don’t know – fascinating? Ironic? A hell of a trip? something that Kylie’s entire business was started based in a body part that she’s insecure about and which she needs regular injections and treatments to maintain.

    • STRIPE says:

      She was very much born in 3rd base and thinks she hit a triple, but you’re not wrong here. She was privileged to have the money to begin with but to her credit she started her own company when she saw white space in the makeup market. All things can be true here.

    • ME says:

      Rob Kardashian is a different story. Had he been a female in this family, he’d be very wealthy. Kylie lied about her lips…got injections and said it was lip liner. Her company was founded on lies. It would have been hard for Rob to do the same. He can’t use his beauty and body to get girls to buy his sh*t lol. It’s mostly women that watch their show and follow them on-line.

      I don’t think anyone in this family is self-made. Even Kim’s company Skims isn’t anything special or some brand new idea. She has a huge media platform to promote her sh*t, as does Kylie. There may be way better products out there but those companies don’t have the exposure this family does. They also get away with stealing ideas and copying other designs/products. I give them zero credit.

    • kif says:

      And you believe that Kylie wrote a book, right? If there’s any credit that needs to go anywhere – it’s to Kris for finally realizing how to use her youngest daughter. Kylie can’t even talk sensibly about how she “started” her company. I only hope those people that actually produced these products Kylie plastered her name on were well compensated. But then again, I would not be surprised if Kris took advantage of them. Kardashian- Jenners = grifters.

    • February-Pisces says:

      I feel like the only self made kardashians/jenners are kris, Kim, Robert senior, and Caitlyn. The rest wouldn’t know where to begin if they had to start from scratch.

    • WTF says:

      That is kind of a low blow. Rob isn’t considered “hot”. He doesn’t have sex to sell. All of his sisters capitalize on body image and sexuality to make their money. Rob is just a regular looking guy.

    • Robyn says:

      I’ll save my credit-giving for Kylie’s team.

    • wow says:

      NO. I don’t give her credit vs Rob. Rob’s only kardashian krime was being fat. They didn’t want to promote him. Period

  3. Merricat says:

    Lol. This reminds me of actors from wealthy families who talk about their “lean” years, before they started making millions per picture.

  4. holly says:

    plastic is as plastic does

  5. OriginalLala says:

    She started on third base but thinks she hit a home run.

    • ME says:

      Just like how Kendall believes she had to “work” hard to become a model. She literally told her mom she wanted to model and her mom had a modeling job for her the next day.

      • goofpuff says:

        These people who have grown up in wealthy all their lives have no idea how it works for regular folk. They think having to put in any effort at all is “hard work”.

  6. Alissa says:

    honestly, they’re the only lipsticks I use. and I have a lot of them. I’ve tried a few different brands and none of them work as well or have as nice colors. also, I know people say that hers and color pop are the same and I can tell you I bought color pop and ended up throwing them out because they sucked.

    • DuchessL says:

      My daughter really wanted to try her lipsticks and I bought some for her and 1 for me just to see what the hype was about and I still dont really use it. I found my colors years ago and those work better for me. Too bad. I think it does look really good on pics. Kylie is self made with she had a massive headstart to real selfmade like Oprah let’s say, growing up dirt poor, there are so many other great examples

    • equality says:

      What bugs me is that there have to be people behind her who developed the formulas and did the actual work with none of the credit. You know she didn’t sit at the kitchen table and study the chemistry to do all this.

      • Ella says:

        Exactly. It’s like celeb perfumes. It’s more the name behind it and she had a hand in input and selection, but not in formulating.

      • Maddie says:

        Seed Beauty. They ended up suing Kylie when she sold the company to Coty, which allegedly was the reason behind the recent rebrand.

      • ME says:

        This is the same thing with Kim’s Prison Reform career. Others do all the work, she tweets about it and boom she gets all the credit.

      • goofpuff says:

        Agreed. Seed Beauty did all the actual work and Kylie did the branding for her products. People who think she created this in the kitchen are ridiculous.

  7. why? says:

    Surprise, surprise, surprise. Another piece giving a Kardashian/Jenner credit that they don’t deserve and haven’t earned. When will the press learn? The Kardashian/Jenners put their names on products created by someone else and then proclaim that they created it. This is the same con run by Trump when he sold his name to various companies around the world. So Kylie didn’t start anything, her mother just found a pre-existing product/company and added her name to it. If this is really Kylie’s business(not just another business run by Kris under her daughter’s name), why is Kris doing all the talking? It would be nice if the interviewer asked Kris specifics about the company and product that she started in her daughter’s name.

    All this article proves is that the Kardashians/Jenners survived this long because Kris pays the press to write nice things about her daughters and they attach themselves to people like Kayne.

  8. Maddie says:

    They’re still running with the “billionaire” title, eh? Filthy rich isn’t enough, HAS to be a billionaire? LOL.

  9. Mel says:

    I like makeup and I’ve never seen Kylie’s products anywhere . Who sells them? It’s easy to tell if kid with hundreds of thousands in the bank to use their savings.

    • AmyB says:

      I have seen Kylie’s products in Sephora (limited) and in Ulta. I’m sure if you want the complete inventory you should buy from her direct website, but it is sold on other websites.

      It’s hard for me to take seriously that Kylie is “self-made” here, but as someone else pointed out, her brother had the same benefits from the show, and didn’t create what she did. She definitely had privilege, wealth and connections in starting this at 16. Same as Kendall. She had all the connections to become a model, that many young women do not. Let’s not deny facts here LOL

  10. Kristen says:

    I just feel like it’s the lack of acknowledgement about what how using her own money to do this is different from what most people even think of when considering their own money. A lot of girls her age probably have the idea + wherewithal to do what she did, and maybe even better, but don’t have a bank account with tens of millions and a fallback on hundreds of millions of family money, to say nothing of a career in reality tv.

  11. Jules says:

    Can we just stop with this nonsense, there is no debate. And the squatty potty posing is so ridiculous.

  12. February-Pisces says:

    The thing about Kylie cosmetics is that it will only ever have the shelf life of kylies popularity, which I don’t think will last beyond the age of 26. She has done well, but I do think she’s someone who will peak very soon, then struggle with self worth once her popularity fades like a lot of child stars.

    Also kylies lip kits are already on the decline, the whole popularity began when Kylie said she was over lining her lips. She credited MAC and their lip liners would all sell out. Then when she created her own, it had the same effect. But when she came clean about having lip fillers (worst kept secret ever) girls everywhere went straight to the fillers as that was the true secret to kylies look. Anyway I’m sure kris Jenner has made sure kylies money is safe for the future.

    • JT says:

      I think her cosmetics line is already on the decline. At Ulta, they use her products as the free gift with purchase; Kim’s as well. Maybe it has to do with the rebrand but her makeup isn’t as ubiquitous as it used to be. Even the major influencers hardly use her stuff anymore. Coty was played if you ask me. The value of the company was overhyped and they threw away $600 million on a makeup line that was only going be popular for finite amount of time.

  13. Veronica S. says:

    LMAO, the entire reason she had those savings is because her family’s wealth positioned her to be on that show in the first place. There’s no self-made when you’re starting near the top of the ladder, and you’d have to think the rest of us are stupid to think her family’s name wasn’t a huge reason why investors wouldn’t have decided to back it.

    I have no idea why rich people have this obsession of pretending they have it as hard as the rest of us. Just own your wealth! Cosplaying poverty does not improve our opinion of you!

  14. Bettyrose says:

    This seems like a good time to remind all California residents that Caitlin Jenner’s daughter is a billionaire. Please get those ballots in.

  15. psl says:

    Please. She acts like she sat in her basement creating gloss. YOU COME FROM MONEY. You STARTED ON THIRD BASE. Stop klaiming you hit a home run.

  16. WTF says:

    molester and homophobe enabler? Do tell.

  17. Valerie says:

    Self-made, lmao.

    • BothSidesNow says:

      There is nothing self made in that entire family that hasn’t been stretched, plumped, filled or wrapped around as much as this family. With the entire Kartra$hian family, it’s the same old question, “what’s in this😖”, as when you bite into a hot dog!!

  18. Sof says:

    I used to follow a lot of beauty tutorials back in the day and remember the moment when EVERYONE, regardless of their age and nationality, was making videos trying to match the exact colour of Kylie’s lipstick. It was tricky because most of them were sold out everywhere.
    So obviously someone (Kris) realised that other people were making tons of money out of Kylie’s image and saw there was a business opportunity.
    Now, it could have been Kylie herself, if we take into account that she became the favourite daughter.

  19. Rice says:

    These photos do not make me interested in buying her products. She’s giving bored, little rich girl energy.

  20. lucy2 says:

    You know what I would have told a 16 year old who wanted her own company? Great – study hard and go to business school, or go get some experience, so you actually have an idea what you’re doing here. Instead they just hired everyone to do everything for her.
    I guess it’s good she didn’t just write Kylie a fat check to start it, but they sort of did, most teenagers don’t have millions to invest from a reality show. And hey, all it cost was her childhood!

    • bettyrose says:

      ITA. Even if you can afford to give your child the funds to skip those steps, buying your child a career gets you an Ivanka or Kylie. There are tons of age appropriate ways for a teen to get experience while still being a student and benefitting from the years of emotional growth it takes to be a functional adult. I was never much of an entrepreneur, but I babysat, got regular clients, and earned all my own spending money in high school. I didn’t have my first customer service job until freshman year of college, but mygawd does that teach you things. I am a huge believer everyone needs that kind of experience.

  21. Justjj says:

    Um, lol. No one thinks this girl is self made please. The vast majority of the US has been working since they were teenagers, has no ‘savings’ and if they do-not until they are well into their 30s or beyond because the cost of living is Sky high everywhere, they are too busy paying for basic necessities, and paying off student loans. Self made? Lol. Ok.

  22. paddingtonjr says:

    Can we stop pretending that her savings came from a lemonade stand or babysitting? She was paid to be part of a reality show which happened because her half-sister made a sex tape, her father was an Olympic champion and both parents are good hustlers. Good for her for creating a viable business, but let’s not pretend she had to work to help out the family or pay for college. It would be interesting to see how much of her net worth comes from each source: Kylie Cosmetics, sponcon, the reality shows and any other income.