Celebrity endorsement of beauty products has always been a problem. In the Instagram era, it’s become even more of a problem in part because you’re not always sure who’s pushing what and how their celebrity might relate to the product they’re endorsing. That’s why the “Maybe She’s Born with It” campaign from Maybelline was so brilliant: it reminded us that celebrities might not really owe their looks to the product they’re endorsing.

And it was exactly this kind of problem that got Khloé Kardashian (often called “KoKo” by celebrity watchers) in trouble last week. Fans called her out for pretending a teeth whitening solution was responsible for her bright teeth when they all knew her beautiful smile came from a completely different cosmetic dentistry procedure.

Khloé Kardashian. Her Fans recently Called A Promotion of Teeth Whitener “Fraudulent”. Celebrity endorsement of beauty products has always been a problem. In the Instagram era, it’s become even more of a problem in part because you’re not always sure who’s pushing what and how their celebrity might relate to the product they’re endorsing.

“Everyone’s Been Asking”

The problem started with KoKo’s Instagram of herself flirting with the camera while she had a whitening device in her mouth. She captioned it with the phrase: “Everyone’s been asking for my thoughts on @hismileteeth, here it is! I’ve been using the kit a couple of nights a week for the past few months and it has helped me maintain my white teeth.”

Many of her fans criticized her. Some were quick to point out that Khloé has veneers. One of the things veneers do is whiten your teeth. They can, of course, also straighten your teeth, lengthen them, and reshape them, closing gaps and building up small or poorly shaped teeth. For a skilled cosmetic dentist, it’s easy to craft a beautiful smile with veneers–they give you complete control over almost every aspect of a smile’s appearance.

In fact, veneers are better than teeth whitening in many cases for exactly this reason. With whitening, your teeth can only get as white as your natural enamel. Natural enamel varies in color, and some of us have darker enamel than others. Other times, your enamel might be more translucent or thinner, which lets the inner layer of the tooth, called the dentin, show through. But with veneers, you can get your teeth as white as you want them, hopefully striking a balance where they still look natural and beautiful, rather than fake and offputting.

Don’t Trust Influencers

Of course, we shouldn’t be surprised by this behavior. It’s just like Taylor Swift warned us: “influencers gonna influence.” (What? That’s not in the song? I could have sworn it was…) KoKo, like the rest of her family, owes her current wealth to monetizing her celebrity status. This is how sister Kylie Jenner became a “self-made billionaire”–she used what she had to take money from people who would give it to her, whether that was endorsement companies, or directly from fans through her cosmetics company. (Which, incidentally, brings us back to the “Maybe she’s born with it” line. While Kylie, Kourtney and Kim have definitely made a lot of their fame, we can’t say they started from zero.)

In the end, it’s best to get advice about what cosmetic dentistry procedure is right for you from a dentist. And not trust them when they tell you that this or that procedure gave them their beautiful smile.

Looking for a Beautiful Smile in St. Louis?

If you’re unhappy with the appearance of your smile and are looking to improve its appearance, we can help. Please call (314) 375-5353 today for an appointment with a St. Louis cosmetic dentist at City Smiles, with offices downtown and in Clayton, MO.