Sunday, October 7, 2007

'Professional' Practices of Kimkins, Take 3: The Infamous Red Dress Picture

As if any further proof of fraudulent business practices at Kimkins by Kimmer/Heidi is needed, check this out:

This is the beautiful 'red dress' picture that Heidi/Kimmer posted on the new Kimkins site in late May, 2007, claiming it was her current 'after' picture. She even told stories of the photo shoot, of needing a few glasses of wine to loosen up, of how the photographer had her twist and turn to look her best, how the lighting and filters were 'kind' to her. She 'modestly' accepted praise for her beauty, gave credit for her youthful appearance to her supposed Retin-A routine, gave credit to 'good genes' for her firm muscle tone.

Kimmer's target market, primarily desperate, overweight women, were to believe that this was the current photo of an almost 50-year old woman who had lost almost 200 pounds in less than a year, and maintained it. In actual fact, it turns out to be the stolen photo of a 27-year old Russian mail-order bride named Lesya. See the original source here.

Here is another photo of Lesya from that same Russian agency:
(Thanks go to buzzybee of LCF for this discovery.)

This photo has recently been removed from the Kimkins website, but, at the time of this writing at it can still be seen as Kimmer's 'after' shot on various newsletters and blogs around the internet, not to mention in archived copies stored for the legal authorities.

Kimmer played upon the hopes and fears and deepest emotions of an already vulnerable group of people. She eagerly sold them the lies she knew they so fervently wanted to hear, with her full assurance that she could help them achieve their dreams, as she claimed she had done. She exploited the photos of these Russian mail-order brides, who are an already exploited group of women. Then she used these photos to exploit tens of thousands of trusting customers who were willing to risk $60 on the fond hope these wonderful results could be theirs as well.

That is not only immoral---it is illegal.
It is not just a bad business judgment --- it is fraud.

And, at this late stage of the game, those associated with Kimkins who knowingly suppress this evidence, or delete posts pointing out this evidence, may be seen as accessories after the fact to fraud, and share in the guilt.


Lori said...

Hooboy, Becky. I just can't help but wonder if Heidi is simply a coldhearted scammer and cheat, or if she's delusional and has an untreated mental illness.

This is just awful and the plot just thickens as it goes along.

I'm so glad you and a host of others are out of there.

Now if we can only get the rest of them out. I can't help but feel anxiety at the thought of new people giving up their $60 and starting the diet at this time.

How can we get them out and warn them?

Doggygirl said...

Becky, another well written story that truly captures the point about Heidi preying on women who are desparate to lose weight. Heck, I totally know better than the HideyLies such as "there is no such thing as starvation mode..." and I too almost spent $60 (before the scandal). Largely due to the red dress picture.

I hope you don't mind if I quote some of your story and include a link to your full story on my blog. I wish I could write this up as effectively as you have.


Mimi said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
KimATC said...

Thanks Becky. She went on and on in great detail with me about the photoshoot. With everything she described and said, I believed her wholeheartedly at the time. The night that photo was finally found, wow, felt like I had been kicked in the stomach and couldn't breathe. Thanks for writing about all of this

arrowhead said...

Becky could you help me please?

I am a newbie at Kimkins, fortunately I have not followed the diet entirely for the last two weeks. I just recently found all the sites like your blog -- so I'm glad I was only doing this for a short time -- but here is my question I joined as an affiliate before finding out about the controversy -- and gave Heidi my social security number -- I rarely do this and am now freaking out that she might perpetrate fraud using my number -- is there anything I can do???

Thank you so very much,

noreen said...

Dear Becky,

I'm from Malaysia so I had no idea of the storm that had brewed up in the US but by chance when I googled Kimkins I was led to your blog. I joined Kimkins in around April 2007 so I had seen the red dress photo. I only followed the diet doing Kimkins, never K/E coz I love veggies too much, and I could sense something fishy about just eating meats and taking laxatives. At first I thought it was a 'light' scam, but when you put out that picture was from a Russian mail-order bride who's only 27, I feel sick to my stomach. I did lose weight, around 6 kgs only coz I didn't stick to the diet strictly. Lucky I never felt that doing K/E was safe ,it just looks so unnatural. Do you know, i think that Deni's heart flutters are due to loss of potassium due to excessive laxative use and this is potentially fatal?! This is really a let-down, however i sense low-carb dieting is still something useful for weight loss, just not to the extent of K/E. Thank you so much for your blog, otherwise i wouldn't be able to know the truth.One question though, you never met Kimmer in person? How about anyone else like deni or Christin or Amy?