Hello, all! Today I am going to give you some tips on how to simplify your “getting ready” routine, and hopefully save you some time in the process. There are times when I love devoting an hour to my face, because it’s fun! But I’ll be honest, most of the time I just want to get myself ready as quickly as possible. I work a pretty hectic full-time job as well as doing other freelance things on the side, so my goal in the morning is to get myself ready in as little time as possible while still looking professional and put together. These ideas and tips are my own, and my intention isn’t to make anyone feel like they need to do this to look good. These are some things you can do to spruce up or simplify the routine you already have, not an outline of what you have to do to look good.

THE FIVE MINUTE FACE

This is the look I wear when I don’t want to look like I have makeup on, but I don’t want to look like I just rolled out of bed, either. Every 5-minute look should contain roughly three things that make the most improvement to your appearance. For most people those things are: a light coverage foundation such as BB/CC cream or tinted moisturizer, mascara, and brow gel or pencil. There are a few exceptions to this idea, for example, when I have a client who has very full brows, I usually won’t advise her to fill them in. The majority of people need a little help in the brow region. I most often do this look on Saturday mornings when I’m running errands, and occasionally on work days when I don’t feel like putting a lot of effort towards my “look”. Start by using a Beauty Blender or another off-brand beauty sponge like it, and apply your foundation by lightly buffing it into the skin. I use a CC Cream or a tinted moisturizer instead of a full coverage foundation for this look. I want to allow my skin some space to breathe here because this is not a full-coverage look. I prefer a CC Cream to a tinted moisturizer oftentimes, because I am of the age where I have started to get skin spots, and CC Cream is really great for neutralizing those. For those of you in your teens or early 20’s, tinted moisturizer will most likely be the perfect amount of coverage for you. Next, lightly fill in your brows with a brow pencil. It’s important not to spend too much time here because the goal is to be done with your whole face in roughly five minutes. I brush through my brows with a spoolie, and gently draw strokes at the begging and tail end of my brows, and then brush through them with some brow gel. If you are a person with really thin or spotty brows, don’t worry, we have all been there! You may want to add some pencil strokes in the thinning spaces too, but again don’t spend too much time here. This look is very natural. Finally, curl your lashes and apply a couple of quick coats of mascara. It is very important to me that my lips are hydrated, so I ALWAYS wear chap stick even when my face is naked. My all-time favorite is Dr. Pepper Lip Smacker because it leaves a little touch of color, and tastes and smells just like the soda! Yum.

THE TEN MINUTE FACE

This is the look I wear most often, because it’s what I wear Monday-Friday for my office job. It starts the exact same way that the five minute face starts. Once I complete those steps, I add concealer on my dark under eye circles (it’s truly upsetting to me that I even have those), and on any spots I might have on my face (adult acne is real, people). Because concealer is a very creamy and concentrated product, I always set it with a bit of translucent powder to prevent creasing. This is important when dealing with super creamy products. Next, I’ll add some blush on the apples of my cheeks. I use powder blush most often because I think it is the easiest to work with. I do like cream and liquid blushes, but those require a fair amount of blending which isn’t ideal for me when I am in a hurry. After that, I contour and highlight my face. Right now I am very into cream contour products, but powder contours are more user friendly. The benefit of a cream contour is how well it blends into the skin- it sort of melts into it rather than sitting on top of it. Cream contours require a bit of practice before you get the hang of using them, so if you are interested in using cream instead of powder, practice lots so you can get the hang of it before making it a part of your daily routine. Contour should be applied anywhere we want to hollow out, or narrow the face. Under your cheek bones, up and around your temples, and along your jawline. There are more areas on the face that can be contoured, but this is all I do for this look. I don’t want to make myself look “too” done up because this is still a very natural look. I add highlighter just on the tops of my cheeks. Liquid highlighter is nice because it can be applied with your finger and is more intense than a powder highlighter. If you want more of a subtle highlight, then I would suggest using a powder product with a fan brush. When it comes to highlighter, I think subtlety is for the birds, but I realize not everyone is a fan of highlighter. If you’re not, then skip this step and just don’t tell me. I DON’T WANT TO KNOW!  Finish by adding a tinted lip balm that has a high amount of gloss to it, and a touch of color. Lip balms are my best friend, they go with me EVERYWHERE. Please invest in one! Your lips will thank you 🙂

THE FIFTEEN MINUTE FACE

For this look, I use foundation instead of a CC Cream or tinted moisturizer. Your skin may not need a foundation. More often than not, I find that my clients are using a foundation that provides WAY more coverage than they need. Please don’t do this! It will clog your pores and cause breakouts. Sad!  Be fair to your skin when choosing a foundation. You wouldn’t wear a sweater in the summertime, so why wear a full coverage foundation when you don’t have a need for it? I use a brush to apply the foundation rather than a blending sponge here, because a brush provides a bit more coverage. I like that when going for a more “made-up” look. In addition to the steps I took in the previous looks, I add a neutral colored cream shadow to my lids. Cream shadows are great because you can apply them with your finger. That isn’t always ideal, especially when doing more complex eye looks, but when you want a simple wash of color, they’re perfect. You can use a matte one or a shimmery one, whichever you prefer. The world is your oyster! (I never really understood why that phrase exists. Oysters are gross, why would I want one? I digress.)  Next I add some contour and highlight to my eyes with the same shades I used on my face. Apply the contour shade in a windshield wiper motion across the crease of your eye, and apply the highlight directly underneath your eyebrows. This makes the eyes pop a bit more without taking a whole bunch of time. Finish by adding a neutral colored lipstick.

DAY-TO-NIGHT LOOK

These are some things you can do to intensify your look without having to start from scratch. This is beneficial on days where you’ve worked or been at school all day, but have somewhere to be in the evening. These ideas aren’t necessarily quick ones, and some take a bit of practice to get good at. Don’t be discouraged! Practice really does make perfect. Sometimes I’ll meet my friends for dinner or a movie and I’ll need to do something to spruce up my work face, which is pretty haggard by the end of the day (yikes). I always start Operation: Spruce-Up by dusting translucent powder along my T-Zone, and anywhere else that I have extra shine (at the end of the day, I have A LOT of shine on my forehead. I could probably use it as a white board, though I’ve never tried). Then I darken my brows up by using a powder or gel brow product. I prefer a powder to a gel because I don’t like a “drawn on” brow look. If you do, that’s okay. Do your thang. Next, I use a liner pen to do eyeliner on my top lid. It’s usually winged liner, but sometimes I just use liner along my lash line to bulk it up and make my lashes look fuller. You can do liner on the bottom of your eyes as well, but keep in mind it creates the illusion that your eyes are smaller than they are. I don’t do liner on the bottom of my eyes because I don’t need any help in that area. My eyes already look small enough. After liner, I’ll intensify my contour by adding more to the hollows of my cheeks and up through the sides of my face. I add more highlight to my cheeks and eyes if necessary which, let’s be real, it almost always is. The last step is adding a bold color of lipstick. This really kicks the look into high gear so be careful and steady yourself. You don’t want to knock yourself over because you look so good.

Hopefully I’ve provided you with some good ideas and tips on how to make your life easier! If you have any questions, you can always reach out to me on my makeup instagram account (Gabrielledoes) and I will be happy to help you. Remember that makeup is supposed to be fun, so be chill and patient with yourself while learning. You’ll get the hang of it!

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