Kim Kardashian is suing an Alabama doctor for using her name and likeness to promote the "vampire facial" that the star helped popularize back in 2013.
She filed the lawsuit against Charles Runels and Cellular Medicine Association and it hits the doctor for "copyright infringement, infringement of registered mark, false association, violation of the right of publicity and California common law trademark infringement," E! News reports.
"Defendant Charles Runels is a doctor in Alabama. In characteristically self-promoting fashion, he describes himself alternatively as the 'Orgasm Doctor' and the 'Calvin Klein of medicine,'" the court docs state, according to E! News. "To that end, while he appears to maintain a small practice in Alabama, most of his time is spent touting the various cosmetic procedures he has purported to trademark—including, as relevant here, the Vampire Facial."
The model reached out to the doctor, who refused to stop using her name in relation to the facial. "When Ms. Kardashian reached out to Runels and his trademark attorney to demand that he cease using her name and likeness without her consent, he not only refused to take down the pictures of her and references to her; he had the temerity to demand that she pay him," the docs continued. "The Defendants' use of Ms. Kardashian's name and likeness is not, and never has been, authorized. The Defendants have never sought Ms. Kardashian's permission to use her as a 'face' for their products and services, and Ms. Kardashian has never given such permission."
Runels told his side of the story to The Hollywood Reporter. "She makes profit on getting attention and she used my names to get attention without asking and without paying," he said, per the publication. "Would the photos and the show have gained as much views without my name?"
Runels added, "It's like the quarter back who has sex with the ugly girl, then wants to deny. She endorsed my procedures without my asking. Now she wants everyone to keep it a secret. She's a public figure, she made it news, it's legal to curate the news."
The Keeping Up With the Kardashians star received the facial treatment during an old episode, but was disappointed with it and told her fans that she would never get one again. "A few years ago, I heard about a 'vampire facial,' and I was so intrigued," she wrote back in 2018. "It was really rough and painful for me. It was honestly the most painful thing ever! It's the one treatment that I'll never do again."