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19th Feb 2022

What exactly is a Pick Me Girl, and why are people calling Kendall Jenner one?

Kendall Jenner Pick Me Girl

Ever heard of a Pick Me Girl?

According to Urban Dictionary, the top definition of a ‘pick me girl’ is: “a girl who goes out of her way to impress men by ensuring she is “not like other girls.”

Dig a little deeper, and you will find that the description is being used about girls who are ‘chill.’ Someone who wouldn’t call herself a ‘girly girl’ but rather almost one of the boys. She might even mock other women for liking anything that is mainstream or traditionally feminine. She doesn’t do the gossip or drama, is not overly interested in fashion or makeup (or claims not to be, anyway) and instead promotes herself as different, cooler, and way less ‘girly’ than other girls.

@sneha.v Hmmmm what’s she hiding? #pov #pickme #pickmegirl #acting ♬ original sound – Sneha

So what is going on with the pick-me?

“Pick-me-ism definitely is rooted in internalized misogyny and a desire to distance oneself from traditional female archetypes and stereotypes, which we’ve been told all our lives are bad and negative,” says Amy Rosenbluth, a recent Political Science and International Development graduate from McGill University who penned an in-depth analysis on TikTok’s #PickMeGirl trend.

“I’d also argue that most of us have probably exhibited pick-me behaviour at least once in our lives,” she adds.

“It’s kind of in the same way that we all want to be unique and be apart from everyone else, so a lot of women believe that if they lean into these archetypes and diminish other women, that they will be able to set themselves apart and be picked. They do that by casting themselves as superior to lesser traditional or regular women and girls.”

A vicious cycle of women putting down other women

The Pick Me Girl topic is trending on TikTok at the moment, and while you can argue it is simply making fun of ‘Pick Me’ girls because they are somehow putting down other women by claiming not to be like them – is pointing this out not doing the exact same thing? A vicious cycle of women putting down other women? Are we not over this by now?

Celebrities are, of course, easy targets as per usual, and Kendall Jenner is currently trending as the internet’s #1 Pick Me Girl.

In a selection of TikTok videos with the hashtags #PickMeGirl and #KendallJenner, it is, in particular, one moment that seems to have cemented the 26-year-old model and Keeping Up With The Kardashian star’s status as a classic Pick Me Girl.

In it, the Kardashian-Jenner sisters are taking part in a volleyball game, and Kendall jokes that she’s got the body of a sports star. “I did this blood test. They told me that I’m super athletic and I’m built for this s***,” she told Khloé.

There are also other clips that keep resurfacing, with Kendall often describing herself as a ‘nerd’ and ‘not as into makeup’ as her other sisters, in particular Kylie.

@kardashianicon Part 2? #kendalljenner #pickme #nerd #justkidding #foryou #foryoupage ♬ original sound – kardashianicon

Ridiculous? For sure. Not to mention the fact that the share irony of these women calling out other women seems to be utterly lost.

The thing is, Rosenbluth points out, while the #PickMeGirl trend may have started as an attempt to call out a certain type of behaviour, the trend has now more or less devolved into (mostly) female TikTok users labelling other women as pick-mes for any behaviour that might attract male attention, including “​​being short, enjoying sports and not wearing makeup.”

Ironically, the ones calling out pick-me behaviour have perhaps transformed into the pick-mes themselves.

“In scrutinizing the personalities and behaviours of her peers, the woman decrying the pick-Me is positing herself as the ‘real’ and ‘unfiltered’ girl, pitted against supposedly fake and vapid Pick-Mes. She, therefore, defines herself as superior to the Pick-Me Girl,” writes Rosenbluth.

Kendall, however, recently had a brilliant response to the whole ordeal, sharing a funny TikTok from a recent ski trip, where she fails to land a snowboarding jump, and instead falls flat on her face.

@kendalljennerit’s giving ‘pick me’ vibes

♬ original sound – E! Entertainment

Set to the soundtrack of her claiming to be athletic, the post’s caption read, “It’s giving ‘pick me’ vibes.”

Needless to say, her fans loved her not-so-subtle shade for the haters.

“Lmfao living for Kendall throwing shade at everyone’s comments,” one follower wrote.

Kendall’s good friend Hailey Bieber simply added, “Lmaooo” while another person wrote: “THE CAPTION” and “Self-aware icon.”

Well played, Kendall!