Kim Kardashian and Marilyn Monroe are in the news again! Just over a week ago, Kardashian wore Monroe’s ‘Happy Birthday Mr. President’ dress to the 2022 Met Gala. Later in the week, she received a lock of the icon’s hair as a gift from Ripley’s Believe It Or Not. Now, a Marilyn Monroe historian is arguing this lock of hair is a fake.
During @KimKardashian’s Met Gala dress fitting at Ripley's Believe It or Not! HQ, our team surprised her with a silver box that contained an actual lock of Marilyn’s iconic platinum hair. #MetGala #MarilynMonroe pic.twitter.com/UBINxNmfF2
— Ripley's Believe It or Not! (@Ripleys) May 3, 2022
Last week, Ripley’s Believe It Or Not posted a video of Kardashian receiving the piece of Monroe’s hair on their social media pages. In this video, Kim opens the gift from the museum and when she is told that it’s Marilyn’s hair she jokes that she is going to “do some crazy voodoo” while channeling the late actress. She thanks the museum, emphasizing how special the lock of hair is to her. She then turns to her boyfriend Pete Davidson and tells him, “this is sleeping with me every night – sorry babe.”
Presumably, the gift was given to Kardashian before she wore Monroe’s dress to the Met Gala. Last week, Ripley’s also shared a look inside Kim’s Met Gala dressing room filled with Marilyn Monroe and John F. Kennedy memorabilia and artifacts. A piece of Marilyn’s hair was also on display in this dressing room, though it was not the same lock the museum gifted to Kim.
However, on Friday, Marilyn Monroe expert Scott Fortner took to social media, presenting receipts that prove the lock of blonde hair is a fake. Fortner is considered an authority on Marilyn Monroe, and he often assists major auction companies in authenticating and verifying memorabilia.
Fortner posted a series of photos on Instagram disproving that Ripley’s lock of hair was genuine. He took a screenshot of Ripley’s article about Kim’s Met Gala dressing room with the hair on display. In their article, Ripley’s had stated that the lock of hair was clipped by Monroe’s hairstylist, Robert Champion, prior to her performance at Madison Square Garden.
In his Instagram post, Fortner wrote: “News Flash: Robert Champion did not cut and style Marilyn’s hair for the JFK Gala. It was actually the one and only “Mr. Kenneth” (Kenneth Battelle) who had the honors. Battelle is responsible for Marilyn’s famous hairstyle from that night…”
In his post, Fortner also included a receipt from Lilly Dache Beauty Salon. In his caption, Fortner wrote: “The receipt, dated May 25, 1962 list [sic] a ‘Hair Dress’ and references May 18 and 19, 1962. May 19th was the date of the Kennedy gala. The bottom the [sic] receipt reads, “Kenneth Services at home Fri + Saturday.” Marilyn paid $150.00 for the service.
This isn’t the first time this week Kim Kardashian has found herself under scrutiny for wearing Marilyn Monroe’s ‘Happy Birthday Mr. President’ dress. The reality television star told reporters that she had to lose 16 pounds in three weeks to fit into this dress as it couldn’t be altered. In recent years, the body positivity movement has paved the way for a greater acceptance of all body types. Her comments have since come under fire as problematic, especially for all the young girls that look up to Kim Kardashian.