Kim Kardashian West didn’t invent the selfie, but she did elevate it to, if not an art form, then at least a viable business model. Selfish, published this week, is a 448-page compendium of the reality star’s digital self-portraiture, including never-before-seen throwback shots and intimate nude photos. This coffee table book is the perfect gift for your friends who love Kim Kardashian or who are themselves Kim Kardashian.
But glossy, triple-curated pictures bound in hardcover — or printed out at all — don’t make for a particularly compelling study of selfies as they occur in nature. To learn the medium from its master, we cataloged every single selfie that Kim has shared with her 31.8 million Instagram followers in the last year.
From May 5, 2014 to May 5, 2015 (the date Selfish hit the shelves), Kardashian uploaded 1,076 photos to the image-based social network. Of those, 152 were selfies. That’s just one in seven: fewer than we might have expected from the undisputed queen of the front-facing camera. And speaking of front-facing cameras, Kim actually forgoes hers to take 2004-style mirror selfies more than one fifth of the time.
Why so serious, Kim?
Kardashian’s go-to selfie face is something along the lines of an alluring scowl, but she does mix things up occasionally.
That’s right: Kardashian turns her frown upside down in just 10% of her photos. Even more elusive is the Kanye-Kim double smile, a rara avis we encountered exactly once, in this shot from the 2014 World Series.
Location, location, location
How could you expect Kim to know when the urge to take a selfie will strike? Public restrooms have never looked so glamorous.
Instagram prefers brunettes
Kim may have unveiled a highly publicized hair transformation earlier this year, but overall, her selfies stayed true to her roots.
Who knows what makeovers 2016 will bring?
Eight days a week
Kim posts the most selfies on Thursdays and the fewest on Saturdays.
If Instagram were your full-time job, you’d need a weekend, too.
Clothes make the Instagram
Kim’s selfie style is nothing if not versatile. She poses in an unending variety of couture du jour, although it’s worth noting that she wears a robe (usually while at a photo shoot or getting her hair or makeup done) in more than 7% of her selfies and a bikini in nearly 6%.
Kim’s fondness for fur — which she can be seen wearing in seven selfies, or 5% of the year’s total — has made her a target for animal rights activists as recently as this week.
Partners in krime
The majority of Kim’s selfies aren’t selfies in the purest sense of the word; they depict her alongside at least one other person.
In the last year, she’s posted Instagram selfies that feature a total of 59 individuals. Most of those people appear in just one of Kim’s selfies, but 10 make it into more than three. (In case you’re wondering, the highest number of people she’s posed with in a single selfie is six.)
If you’ve seen five minutes of Keeping Up With the Kardashians, you can probably guess the usual selfie suspects.
Kim’s most frequent selfie partner is her husband, Kanye West (12 photos). Next up is sister Khloe (8), best friend Jonathan Cheban (7), daughter North (6), and makeup artist Mario Dedivanovic (6).
Thank you for taking this journey with us. Here are a few more interesting tidbits (Kimbits?) we found worth sharing.