It takes that certain something to be on the cover of Vogue – the September issue, no less – and make it seem subdued. But Kendall Jenner somehow makes it work.
The colors of the cover are somewhat demure grays and earth tones, and she doesn’t have a lot of makeup on. At least, not that I can tell. But then there’s that stance, as if she’s ready to rip open that top and bare all.
In the story, Kendall talks about being a tomboy, and how hard it’s been for her to see her dad Bruce Jenner – now Caitlyn Jenner – to a woman.
“We had ATVs and go-carts, and I grew up riding them all the time, which is why I’m a good driver,” Kendall says. “It’s super ironic to think about now, but it’s something I can thank my dad for: how much of a tomboy I was. That’s why I think the whole thing—her transition—was really hard for me, because I was like, ‘But you taught me everything tomboy!’”
She says it’s gotten a little easier as time has gone on. “I knew it was going to have its rough phase,” she says. “But it’s all super normal now. It’s not weird at all. Sometimes I look at a picture of my dad when she was a guy, and it makes me a little sad—I get emotional. You have to get past it—you’ve got a new person to love. It’s kind of a blessing in disguise—if that’s not the wrong way to say it,” she says, and then laughs at her choice of words.
Part of what must seem a bit disorienting to Kendall is that her father now has more in common, at least on the surface, with all of the other women in the family.
“I’ve always been super different from all my sisters, especially my Kardashian sisters. They’ve always been into the glam thing and dressing up every day and being in the thick of it. Part of me loves that, but at the same time, I love dressing down and having my private life. It’s almost, like, empowering to know that no one knows we’re sitting here right now—because it’s not usually like this. Every day, I have to find a way to escape; I have to go borrow someone else’s car. Sometimes it takes me an hour to figure out how to get rid of these guys who have been following me all day. And the second that I feel it getting the better of me, I have to go chill myself out—go take a bath or something to, like, disconnect from it. It keeps you real and sane and humble.”
Kendall has earned a reputation among fashion people for being grounded, always on time, a grown-up. “If I’m being honest, my little sister and I have every right to go crazy,” she says. “You would expect that from us. But neither of us has the desire to do that. I think it says a lot about the way we were raised. Not even just by my parents, but my Kardashian sisters and what they’ve taught us. My parents did something right, and thank God.”
Kendall was eleven when Keeping Up With the Kardashians started airing. The Vogue story by Jonathan Van Meter paints the family as close-knit, hardworking, and tough. And Kendall doesn’t have anything negative to say about her mom, Kris Kardashian, putting the family on a reality show in front of the cameras.
When Jonathan mentions that the name Kardashian now stands for something – that it’s an adjective and not always a nice one – Kendall’s eyes grow wide, like she’s hearing this for the first time.
“Oh, my God. I toadully get what you’re saying,” she says. “People say a lot of what they think, and it’s not always positive. And we never say anything. We just take it. And then when people meet us, they’re pleasantly surprised. Because we aren’t what people think. One of the best lessons I ever learned from my sisters is not to take everything so seriously. Just leave it alone—it will pass in a week. That’s how I grew up. My sisters are so fucking strong, and they taught me and my little sister to just toughen up and not let it affect us. You know what’s real.”
Read the full story over at Vogue.com.