Kim Kardashian Was Robbed at Gunpoint in Paris 2 Years Ago — Here's How She Rebuilt Her Life
On Oct. 3, 2016, the Keeping Up with the Kardashians star was robbed at gunpoint at the No Address Hotel during Paris Fashion Week
It’s been two years since Kim Kardashian West‘s terrifying Paris heist — and she has come a long way.
On Oct. 3, 2016, the Keeping Up with the Kardashians star was robbed at gunpoint at the No Address Hotel during Paris Fashion Week, when masked men stole millions of dollars worth of jewelry from her in the middle of the night — including a $4 million ring. (For more on the incident, here’s everything you need to know.)
In the 24 months since, Kardashian West has undergone a mental and physical transformation, celebrated career milestones and welcomed her third child with husband Kanye West. Here’s a look back at how she rebuilt her life over the course of a challenging, eventful couple years.
Multiple sources confirmed to PEOPLE that the star was deeply shaken by the traumatic experience, and following the robbery, Kardashian West, 37, immediately returned to the United States and retreated entirely from the spotlight — both physically and digitally.
“She has zero desire to resume her old life,” a source told PEOPLE. “She’s still figuring out what she wants to do. Her whole life has basically changed. Before, she was like a social butterfly — now she’s much more withdrawn.”
The star remained hunkered down at home in Los Angeles, spending time with West, 41, and their two kids at the time: daughter North, 5, and son Saint, 2, with sources telling PEOPLE that Kardashian West would only leave her house “for overnight visits with the kids to Kris [Jenner]‘s and for important appointments.”
“The only ‘positive’ thing about the robbery is that Kim changed pace,” a source told PEOPLE. “Instead of working nonstop, her life has slowed down significantly. She seems happy about this.”
“She very much likes spending every day with her kids,” the source added. “In the past, it was very hard for her to be away from her kids for work. Now she gets to wake up with her kids and go to sleep with her kids.”
Celebrating in her 36th birthday just 18 days after the heist, Kardashian West kept things extremely low-key — a noticeable departure from her usual lavish celebrations. While she was scheduled to ring in the birthday at Las Vegas’ Hakkasan Nightclub, she canceled the appearance and stayed home with her family.
Filming KUWTK Resumes
Three weeks after the robbery, production officially resumed on the family’s reality show, and Kardashian West began stepping out in public here and there, either to grab frozen yogurt with friend Jonathan Cheban or to attend one of West’s concerts.
Of her choice to step back in front of KUWTK cameras,sources told PEOPLE that Kardashian West did take a break from filming directly after the robbery but gradually resumed a few weeks later — though it wasn’t due to any pressure from her famous siblings.
“No one is pressuring her,” one insider said. “She has the best support from her family.”
Her First Public Appearance
Sources told PEOPLE the incident “scared everyone” in the Kardashian/Jenner orbit.
“They’re not taking chances,” one insider said. “It was a really scary situation for the entire family, and it’s just not worth it to put themselves out there unnecessarily. When something like this happens, everything changes. It changes the whole family — how and where they travel.”
By mid-November, Kardashian West began planning to re-emerge into the public eye “slowly,” according to sources. To mark her first public appearance since the robbery, she selected the 2016 Angel Ball — which honored her late father Robert Kardashian, who died of esophageal cancer in 2003 — but West’s hospitalization for exhaustion that same night spurred a change of plans.
She ultimately skipped the black-tie gala, flying back to Los Angeles from New York City to be by her husband’s side — and her first public appearance ended up being her longtime makeup artist Mario Dedivanovic’s Masterclass on Jan. 13 in Dubai.
“Kim was very emotional before the trip, and part of it was because she started thinking about the robbery,” a source told PEOPLE. “She’s getting sick of having to relive that awful night and just wants to move on.”
A second insider told PEOPLE the star was “nervous before she left, but says it was the right decision.”
“She was excited to spend time with her fans,” added the source.
Social Media Return
Though her family and friends gradually took over her website and app to share exclusive content, Kardashian West’s Twitter and Instagram accounts remained completely dark for three full months after the robbery.
She officially returned to social media right before the Dubai trip, sharing a family photo on Instagram on Jan. 3.
She also debuted an heartwarming two-and-a-half-minute video on her website, offering fans a glimpse into life at home with her family. The home video montage included footage shot both before and after the Paris incident.
The robbery spurred a series of changes in Kardashian West’s life, from her physical appearance to her personal security.
“[She will have] a much heavier security team,” a source told PEOPLE. “There will be a focus on security personnel who aren’t in traditional clothing, and a lot more undercover security.”
One month after the heist, Kardashian West also parted ways with family bodyguard Pascal Duvier, who was under her employment the night of the robbery but happened to be out shadowing her sisters, Kourtney, 37, and Kendall, 21, when the intruders broke in.
“Pascal no longer works for Kim and Kanye, but he wasn’t fired,” a source told PEOPLE. “He instead reassigned himself to another family for professional reasons. Pascal thought that he did let down Kim and didn’t do his job properly in Paris. They all agreed that it was better for Kim and Kanye to hire a completely new security team.”
As for her physical appearance? Kardashian West debuted a much more toned-down look than her previous glam self — swapping out her eye-catching diamonds for a much more subtle wedding band and ditching her chainmail and latex dresses in favor of baggy t-shirts, sweatpants and a fresh, contour-free face.
“She’s definitely acting like a new Kim,” a source told PEOPLE. “She wears both minimal makeup and jewelry. The new Kim seems less flashy. It’s like she doesn’t need that now to be happy.”
Working on Her Marriage
The combination of Kardashian West’s robbery and West’s subsequent health crisis (spurred by his November hospitalization for exhaustion) led to months of marital strain as the couple was bombarded with rumors of divorce.
Nevertheless, the two worked hard to get back on track, and by early 2017, things appeared to be on the up and up.
“They seem to be doing much better,” a source told PEOPLE in February, adding that Kardashian West seemed “much happier.”
“They’re having fun together again,” the source said. “The struggles that they had for the past few months seem to have mostly past.”
At the time, the source confirmed that West was still in therapy and receiving medical help.
“It all seems to be helping him recover,” the source said. “Kim has nothing but great things to say about Kanye.”
Reliving the Terror
Over the course of 2017 the star and her family openly discussed the robbery in several interviews and on emotional episodes of KUWTK, which documented the aftermath in great detail.
“Well, we are damned if we do and damned if we don’t,” sister Khloé told PEOPLE of the family’s decision to include that aspect of their lives on their reality show. “We are so vulnerable and [have opened] up our lives so much in the past that interestingly enough, if we don’t show things fans get really angry — they feel as if that was taken away from them.”
“And I think for Kim, it was maybe therapeutic for her,” she added. “It’s also something that disgustingly happens to a lot of other people, and we always come from a place of honesty.”
In addition to appearing on a slew of high-profile magazine covers and explanding her line of Kimoji merch, the reality star followed little sister Kylie Jenner‘s lead and launched her own beauty line in June 2017.
The first product she created, a $48 crème contour and highlight kit, sold out in just three hours, bringing in an estimated $14.4 million. (The kits come in four different shades and include a contour pen, a highlight pen and a double-ended blending brush.)
She has since expanded the line with the launch of powder highlighter and contour kits.
In 2018, Kardashian West dedicated herself to political activism, successfully lobbying President Donald Trump to pardon Alice Marie Johnson, a 63-year-old first-time nonviolent drug offender who in 1996 was given a life sentence without parole.
Expanding the Family
After two high-risk pregnancies, Kardashian West took a different route for baby no. 3: surrogacy.
In June 2017, sources confirmed to PEOPLE that the star and her husband had hired a surrogate to carry their third child. By Sept. 6, PEOPLE confirmed the surrogate is pregnant. A separate source later confirmed that Kardashian West and West were “thrilled” to be expecting a daughter in January.
They welcomed baby girl Chicago West on Jan. 15, 2018, at 12:47 a.m.; she weighed 7 lbs., 6 oz.
“Kanye and I are happy to announce the arrival of our healthy, beautiful baby girl,” Kardashian West wrote in a post titled “She’s Here!”
“We are incredibly grateful to our surrogate who made our dreams come true with the greatest gift one could give and to our wonderful doctors and nurses for their special care.”
Seeing the Silver Lining
“It was probably no secret, you see it on the show — me being flashy — but I was definitely materialistic before,” she previously told Ellen DeGeneres. “Not that there’s anything bad about having things and working hard to get those things — and I’m really proud of everyone that’s around me that’s successful. But I’m so happy that my kids get this me. And that this is who is raising my kids. Because I just don’t care about that stuff anymore, I really don’t.”
“I know this sounds crazy, but I know that was meant to happen to me,” she continued. “I don’t want to start crying, but … I’m such a different person. I really feel like things happen in your life to teach you things.”
Keeping Up with the Kardashians airs Sundays (9 p.m. ET) on E!