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Kylie Jenner graces the cover of the August issue of Forbes, which declares her as being on track to become the “youngest-ever self-made billionaire.” Between modeling, endorsements, and her hugely successful cosmetics company, the publication estimates the 20-year-old mogul to be worth at least $900 million—compared to her 37-year-old sister Kim Kardashian-West, who is worth a paltry $350 million, approximately.
After another year of continued growth, Forbes sees her toppling Mark Zuckerberg (who became the youngest billionaire at 23) as the youngest self-made billionaire of any gender. At her tender age, Forbes also ranks Jenner as the youngest person on its annual list of “America’s Richest Self-Made Women.”
The only problem here is that Jenner isn’t entirely self-made. Whereas fellow billionaire Zuckerberg stumbled into a multi-billion dollar software company in his Harvard dorm trying to come up with the best way of ranking his fellow students by hotness, Jenner was born into a wealthy celebrity family. The youngest member of the Kardashian-Jenner self-publicity machine, Jenner was thrust into the spotlight at just 10 years old after being featured on Keeping Up With the Kardashians.
Certainly, Jenner has done exceptionally well for herself, especially in the context of her famous family. But, come on. It’s not like she worked herself up from a job at Starbucks or anything.
“I struggled for a minute with finding something to do on my own,” she told the magazine, before eventually locking down seven-figure modeling gigs and endorsement deals with high-profile retailers at the behest of her “momager” Kris.
In light of these facts, people are calling BS on Forbes.
calling kylie jenner a ‘self-made billionaire’ is like claiming you made soup from scratch because you opened a can and reheated it.— gulab jamun (@PedestrianPoet) July 11, 2018
erm. being born into extreme wealth & instant fame is the exact opposite of “self made” https://t.co/c9rZyx03Al— Franchesca Ramsey (@chescaleigh) July 11, 2018
I feel like Forbes doesn't know what "self-made" means. https://t.co/2DzbIqzpnV— Parker Molloy (@ParkerMolloy) July 11, 2018
kylie jenner’s “self-made” empire is almost as funny as donald trump’s “small loan of 1 million dollars”— james (@phan1om_) July 11, 2018
Calling Kylie Jenner self-made without acknowledging anywhere the incredible headstart she had is what allows people to turn around and look at poor people and ask them why they haven’t become billionaires yet. Her story is not inspiring or motivating for anyone https://t.co/YMnTSzHlKP— Lola (@lola_adewuya) July 11, 2018
“Self-made”? Really? It’s easy to become a billionaire when you’re parents are millionaires...It’s called generational wealth + nepotism.— Shelby Ivey Christie (@bronze_bombSHEL) July 11, 2018
Try Oprah Winfrey, who was raised on a small Mississippi farm by her grandmother, for self-made *whispers Kylie also isn’t a billionaire yet* pic.twitter.com/UQGrJxno8z
Even the freaking dictionary roasted Jenner.
And Netflix took a jab, as well.
Kylie Jenner is a young self-made billionaire in the same way as this kid. pic.twitter.com/HDk4Z54jYO— Netflix Is A Joke (@NetflixIsAJoke) July 11, 2018
Regardless of how “self-made” Kylie Jenner actually is, pretty soon she’s going to have a billion dollars more than the rest of us. Just something to think about.
Stacey Ritzen is a reporter and editor based in West Philadelphia with over 10 years' experience covering pop culture, web culture, entertainment, and news. You can follow her on Twitter @staceyritzen.