"If Kim Kardashian can do it, so can I."
I've clung to this mantra through sweaty spin classes, tasteless spinach salads and sober nights out with friends (Kim is an infamous party pooper).
Sometimes it works -- and is enough to push me through -- but often, channeling Kim K. isn't enough.
There are no fewer than 20 people assigned to making Kim's every move seem effortlessly flawless, but somehow I forget this fact the second I open up her Instagram feed.
Some deep part of my brain just can't help but think the gold-toned, spandex tube of life Kim leads these days must really be that easy.
And just a few weeks ago, I spotted a tidbit I couldn't resist trying: In Kim's Into the Gloss interview, the perfectly-coiffed celeb admitted to making each of her blowouts last five days.
Come hell or deadly ponytail crease, I vowed to make Kim's weeklong styling instructions work for me.
Entering the shower the night before beginning my quest for Kim-like hair nirvana, I catch a glimpse of my shampoo bottle sitting on the rack. Don't look at me like that, I find myself thinking.
And on a Monday like any other, I trace on a low-budget approximation of rosy Kardashian lips and gingerly (obviously, Kim is always waist training) climb into a salon chair at Fix Beauty Bar for a professional blowout.
Moses might have had the 10 Commandments, but I've got Kim Kardashian's Holy Grail.
On the first day, my hair is blow-out perfection.
Ah, the beauty of the professional blowout. Within minutes of my stylist, Vicky, picking up blowdryer, my newly-washed hair takes on the trademark volume and bouncy waves Kim favors.
My hair is in practiced hands with Vicky, leaving me free to imagine receiving this treatment in Kris Jenner's luxury closet every week while exchanging gossip about Beyoncé and sipping artisan green juices. (If it sounds like the life, it's because it damn well is.)
When I finally rouse myself from my reverie, my hair is silky perfection. If I were Kim, I'd no doubt go to Nobu.
Unfortunately, I find I'm still me, so I snap a few pictures and head to a budget-friendly Thai restaurant to show off my weightless 'do.
Day two is code for "give me all the product you have."
According to Kim, the day after a blowout is all about a “messier vibe." In my world, however, it translates to rolling out of bed late and arriving at the office with sea salt spray in hand, a recommendation made by Vicky.
Since my hair's been tied into a low bun all night, it already looks a little listless.
I spritz in five pumps, only to find my once-sleek mane becoming oddly sticky and snarled. Later, a coworker informs me she wouldn't be caught dead using the product on dry hair, only fresh-from-the-beach damp strands.
Instead of getting discouraged, I imagine this is what Kim's hair feels like after a few rounds of food fighting against North's organic puréed peas.
On the upside, my sticky, snarled mane photographs well, so there's that?
Day three could work as free promo for "Grease 3." I'd be the star.
I jinxed my day three “really sleek” look, which Kim says “requires a little oil in the hair,” thanks to my evening workout the night before.
Vicky recommended spritzing dry shampoo at my roots before cardio, but it doesn't seem to have made a difference – my roots do not feel good.
I wake up early, snatch my CHI straightener from my roommate's lair and set to work making each strand pin straight.
Because of the oil sitting at my roots, I achieve a shiny effect but still kind of feel like there's a damp mop sitting on my head all day -- a distinct un-Kim feeling.
I can see how fabulous this style lends itself to high-fashion dinners and luxury dresses, but a raglan sweatshirt and 9-to-5 desk job does not a Kim Kardashian make.
At this point in the week, my male coworkers have caught onto my project and make a point to keep tabs on my emotional state.
It's been three days without shampoo and I'm oddly relaxed. Not to mention, skipping my lengthy morning hair-washing routine has left plenty of extra time for shuteye.
Day four gives me a Kardashian-brand headache.
To be honest, I dreaded day four's “slicked-back ponytail” from the first moment I set out on this journey.
For anyone who's seen Kim's Reggie Bush-era, scalp-tugging ponytails only meant one thing -- extensions, and potentially cement – were required for every gravity-defying architectural creation.
Still, I try my own version. It only takes me two hairbands, one comb, a can of hairspray and one bobby pin to achieve.
For the past 20 years, I believed ponytails were a self-prescribed "lazy-girl style," and this is how I now know my entire life has been a lie.
Kim's scalp nerves are probably dead from years of professional styling, but mine are very much alive and screaming for help. When I take it out at the end of the night, I can feel my entire face relax.
Before bed, I apologize profusely to my roots for all the damage I've caused.
On day five, I'm free... but do I want to be?
Nearly a week after Vicky first shampooed my hair, the oil has certainly settled in. I'm having trouble maintaining any volume, but it has a glossy shine that, I like to think, looks almost as good as Kim's.
She recommends washing on the fifth day, but I decide to go rogue and dig up one of her old hairstyles for inspiration before calling it quits.
A swift Google image search brings me to a fishtail braid Kim wore to a 2011 event. With its deep side part and loose tendrils, it's the perfect grand finale to my week as the Reigning Star of Reality TV.
The style looks so good I even wear it out to happy hour, where I make everyone else get drinks for me.
It's my last few hours as Kim, so I do my best Kardashian impression. I could get used to this.