Kim Kardashian West encourages brands to hire Black models

Kardashian West tweeted pics of "gorgeous black models" her KKW Beauty brand has worked with in an effort to get other companies to hire them.
/ Source: TODAY

Kim Kardashian West is encouraging more beauty and fashion brands to hire Black models.

The reality star and entrepreneur, 39, tweeted photos of some of the "gorgeous black models" her KKW Beauty line has worked with in an effort to get other companies to hire them.

"We’ve had the privilege of photographing the most gorgeous black models since launching @kkwbeauty 3 years ago. I’m so grateful for their creative collaborations and I encourage other brands to book these incredible women for jobs in the future," Kardashian West wrote before sharing the photos of more than two dozen models.

The "Keeping Up with the Kardashians" star's photos included models of different ages and appearances, including at least one model who sported a beautiful mane of silver hair in her pic. Next to each model's name, she included the modeling agency that represents her.

Though many fans were quick to applaud Kardashian West's move, some took issue with her mentioning that the models were Black.

"Why can't you just say "gorgeous women"? Why throw their skin color in there? Would you say 'gorgeous white models'? #stopaddingcolor" wrote one critic.

Others responded to explain that the star was specifically promoting Black models because brands don't hire them as often as they do white models.

"I’m sorry Karen! But Black is important! They don’t get booked as much as your white models! So THANK YOU KIM!! Black is beautiful!!!!" wrote one.

Kim Kardashian West tweeted the photos of Black models her KKW Beauty line has worked with in an effort to encourage more brands to hire them.Axelle/Bauer-Griffin / FilmMagic

Some accused Kardashian West of using the post to promote her brand. But others defended the star.

"And if she said nothing people would still hate on her. Just be happy these models are getting the recognition they deserve," wrote one.

Kardashian West's post comes less than month after modeling legend Beverly Johnson published an op-ed in the Washington Post calling out "discrimination in the fashion industry."

The 67-year-old supermodel, who became the first Black model to grace the cover of Vogue in 1974, wrote that her debut "was meant to usher in a current of change" but decades later, racism is still pervasive in the fashion industry.

Despite appearing on more than 500 magazine covers, Johnson said she was paid less than white models and was "reprimanded for requesting Black photographers, makeup artists and hairstylists for photo shoots."

"Silence on race was then — and still is — the cost of admission to the fashion industry’s top echelons," she wrote.

"Black culture contributes enormously to the fashion industry," Johnson argued. "But Black people are not compensated for it. Brands do not retain and promote the many talented Black professionals already in the fashion, beauty and media workforce. Brands do not significantly invest in black designers. The fashion industry pirates blackness for profit while excluding black people and preventing them from monetizing their talents."

"Forty-six years after my Vogue cover, I want to move from being an icon to an iconoclast and continue fighting the racism and exclusion that have been an ugly part of the beauty business for far too long," Johnson concluded.