Reality TV has dominated network television for years, even in some surprising places. For example, if you are browsing Direct TV local Ft Worth channels, you’ll quickly see even channels that are considered educational have reality shows. There’s Gold Rush on the Discovery Channel and cooking competitions on the Food Network.
However, few people could have guessed the impact reality TV would have on other industries. The fashion industry, in particular, has been heavily influenced by reality stars. And many of these stars have expanded their brand into clothing, shoes and accessory lines of their own.
Celebrities have influenced fashion since the major Hollywood movie studios were first created. But reality TV is swaying fashion trends in totally new ways.
Why Reality Celebrities Are So Influential in the Fashion World
Reality stars get criticized for being famous without any real skill. The fact of the matter is, much of the time they’re famous because their personality and personal style are connecting with viewers. They themselves are like a brand or product, and they have a unique platform for marketing.
Viewers feel more of a connection with reality stars because they get an inside look at their day-to-day life. They feel like they know the celebrity because the reality show gives them this intimate look at how they live.
Reality stars are also depicted in the real world, not a fictitious one. This makes their style seem more approachable and possible for others to pull off. They aren’t just seen on the red carpet so their ready-to-wear outfits get even more attention. These are the styles and trends that the masses are actually going to wear.
Another factor that’s playing into fashion trends is the fact that reality shows are getting closer to real time. The gap between when shows are shot and when they are aired is getting smaller, which means what the stars are wearing in the show is what’s on-trend at the moment.
Possibly the biggest influential factor in how reality celebrities are making their mark in the fashion world is their use of social media. Many stars know how to leverage social media, and their fans can follow them year round whether their shows are airing or not. This gives reality stars a way to constantly have their finger on the pulse of fashion trends.
The Kardashian Effect in the Fashion World . . . And Other Influential Reality Stars
The Kardashian-Jenner clan is the most fashionably influential group of reality stars in history. But that isn’t too surprising given that the three oldest sisters had their clothing store DASH before they were on camera.
It’s getting hard to keep up with all of the fashion-related endeavors that exist between the five Kardashian-Jenner girls. From their own lines of clothing to being brand ambassadors to stores and apps, they’ve had their hand in dozens of ventures.
As mentioned above, social media also comes into play. The youngest of the bunch, Kylie Jenner has quickly built a following of 51 million on Instagram (as of this writing), mostly because young women love her style. Replicating a reality star’s personal style is a growing trend, especially among the younger set.
Lauren Conrad is another reality star that parlayed her coveted style and time on the silver screen to create her own fashion lines. She was also an intern at Teen Vogue during The Hills. It was her focus on fashion that made Lauren connect with many of the viewers that later became customers. The halo headband is just one fashion trend she helped start that is still going strong today.
Even fashion heavyweights like Diane Von Furstenberg are getting into the reality TV game to expand their brand and influence on the market. Her reality show, House of DVF, gives another perspective on the fashion industry, but her latest designs and finding the next big trend are always front and center.
Natalie Halcro is another fashionista turned reality star that spread her fashion influence through television exposure. Last year she was a part of the E! reality show WAGS. Even though she was tapped for the show because she’s the long-time girlfriend of NFL player Shaun Phillips, it was her growing fashion blog Jerome that got the most attention. During the show, they even had a party to celebrate her Instagram account reaching 1 million followers.
Needless to say, thanks to reality TV, these stars have become way more influential in the fashion world, particularly with young viewers that will be following the latest trends for years to come. It’s safe to assume that pretty soon the lines between reality TV and the fashion industry will be totally blurred.