How Kim Kardashian became famous

The Secrets to Kim K.’s Success

Reality star Kim Kardashian — who turns 30 on October 21 — is on top of the world, but it took more than her curves to get there.

Kim Kardashian, Ciara

As she celebrates her milestone 30th birthday, Kim Kardashian is arguably the hottest reality star out there — and, no, we’re not talking about her looks! The curvaceous brunette’s name is on everything from her show “Keeping Up With the Kardashians,” to Dash clothing boutiques, a fitness DVD, perfume, jewelry, and much more. How did she do it in just a few years? Read on as omg! breaks it down.

Kim Kardashian, Ray J

Kim already had a famous last name — her late father Robert Kardashian was part of O.J. Simpson’s defense team in the 1995 trial — but it wasn’t until 2007 that she became a household name herself. That was the year a scandalous home movie made with her on-again/off-again boyfriend of three years, Ray J Norwood, put her on the map. Although Kim filed a lawsuit to stop the tape’s release, Vivid Entertainment went ahead with it in March 2007.

Kim Kardashian, Paris Hilton

As she gained notoriety, the starlet also became the sidekick of her childhood friend and former “Simple Life” star Paris Hilton. Kim began showing up on red carpets with the hotel heiress, and apparently took a cue from her on how to play the fame game … with no discernible talent. Following in Paris’ footsteps, Kim wisely lined up her own ridiculous Carl’s Jr ad intended to make salads look sexy and, more importantly, her own reality show.

Kim Kardashian, Reality

Kim quickly stole the spotlight from the rest of her clan on the E! hit “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” when it debuted in 2007. Audiences watched her pose for Playboy (with mom’s encouragement), film a visit to “The Tyra Banks Show,” and juggle the busy schedule of a celebutante. Along for the ride were her sisters Kourtney, Khloe, Kendall, and Kylie, her brother Rob, her mom Kris Jenner, and stepfather (and dad to Brody Jenner of “The Hills”) Bruce Jenner.

Kim Kardashian, Reggie Bush

Sadly, Kim and Paris did not turn out to be BFFs forever. They reportedly didn’t even speak to one another when they crossed paths in Las Vegas in August. But that’s okay, because rising star Kim quickly found some other famous peeps to hang out with: hot athletes, including her longtime New Orleans Saints beau Reggie Bush. The couple called it quits in March 2010 after almost three years together. Kim later briefly dated another footballer, Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Miles Austin.

Kim Kardashian, Hairstyles

By 2009, Kim was so popular that she joined the likes of LaToya Jackson, Stephanie Pratt from “The Hills,” and troubled actress Lindsay Lohan by creating her own signature sweet treat at West Hollywood’s Millions of Milkshakes. The Kim Kardashian shake comes with strawberry, banana, and whipped cream; it presumably does not include the Armenian beauty’s ultra-light locks. Speaking of which, as every celeb knows, changing your hairstyle is a guaranteed way to create buzz!

Kim Kardashian, Hotties

The petite star has capitalized on her success by skillfully turning every chance she gets into a photo-op. Whether bowling in heels or celebrating Oktoberfest in a traditional dirndl, Kim clearly knows how to attract the cameras.

Kim Kardashian

Yet another way Kim has made it onto Hollywood’s hot list? By lending her newly earned star power to venues — in exchange for a fee, of course. Kim was reportedly given $50,000, plus loads of free publicity, for making an appearance at her own 29th birthday bash at TAO in Las Vegas. This year, she toasted her special day with fetes at the nightclub’s locations in both Vegas and NYC.

Kim Kardashian

Apparently, all that posing paid off! In 2009, Kim co-founded the website ShoeDazzle, a shopping service that selects shoes and accessories for its clients. The savvy stunner added the venture to a fashion portfolio that already included the Dash boutique she co-owns with her sisters in Los Angeles. Since then, her business empire has grown to include clothing lines for Bebe and QVC, a jewelry collection, perfume, sunless tanner, and Dash stores in Miami and the Big Apple (which the siblings are documenting in additional reality shows, natch!).

Kim Kardashian, Justin Bieber

Between her many projects, Kim found time to team up with the reigning teen king Justin Bieber last summer for an Elle magazine photo shoot in the Bahamas. The two, who met months earlier at the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner, became fast friends. They’ve since been spotted grabbing frozen yogurt, and Justin revealed they often communicate via their Blackberries. Way to grab headlines, Kim!

Kim Kardashian, Reality

The hottie also knows how to work social media. Although the tabloids usually do it for her, Kim records her every move on her blog and Twitter account. She has no qualms either about showing off her fam, especially her sister Kourtney’s tot Mason, who turns 1 in December. “I can’t help myself! I just have to attack Mason and smother him with kisses every time I see him,” Kim blogged about her nephew Monday.

Kim Kardashian, La La Vazquez

After all that hard work — if you want to call it that — on the way up, the bombshell maintains her glam image by living large. For example, Kim gave herself an extravagant gift for her 30th birthday: a $250,000 Rolls-Royce Ghost for cruising around with her gal pals, such as La La Vazquez, and whichever gorgeous jock she currently has on her arm. A girl’s got to stay in the spotlight somehow!

Kim Kardashian, Reggie Bush

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