The morning is a time of snooze buttons and 5 more minutes. A time of burnt toast and scorching coffee, of ripped tights and lost keys, of forgotten phones and hair that really needs a good brushing. For the majority of us, morning and stress are synonymous, and we would rather forego the entire day than have to face our alarm clocks.
What's more, for us women, we have an additional process that our male counterparts are lucky enough to bypass: our beauty routine. Be it washing hair, moisturising, putting on makeup or even just cleansing our face, we ladies have a substantial number of extra steps to complete in the morning before it comes to leaving the house.
Something has got to give. Luckily we have the answer, neatly wrapped up for you to open and enjoy. We give you the gift of beauty regime time-saving, and we know you are going to love it. No need for thank you cards, we are just happy that you are happy.
1) Hack your hair
Put your hands up if your mornings move so quickly, your hair gets shoved to the back of the queue of things to do, and all of a sudden you are running out the house with limp locks or a scruffy bun? Don't worry, we put our hands up too.
In order to avoid having to relive another bad hair day at the office, why not try this hack to curl your hair? It ticks so many boxes; you don't need to use heat so it is not damaging (yay), you can do it the night before so it is a great time-saver, and it is super simple to do!
All you need is a hairband to be on your way to having luscious curls.
If you are not too sure about the first hack and have an addiction to using your hair curler, this is the trick for you. By pulling your hair up into a ponytail and tonging separated sections, this is the quickest way to getting salon tresses in less than 15 minutes.
2) Make dry shampoo your best friend
If you are anything like us, spending the morning's precious extra minutes on anything else but snoozing is frankly unheard of. We won't even allocate those minutes to coffee, let alone washing our hair. Cue dry shampoo, our knight in shining powdery armour.
Technically we are supposed to not wash our hair everyday as this washes away our hair's natural oils. Without these oils coating our hair follicles, our hair will dry out, placing us in a bit of a catch-22.
However, by using dry shampoo in between washes, we can avoid looking and feeling like greaseballs whilst still allowing our hair to oil itself naturally.
Here's a top tip: apply the dry shampoo the night before and not in the morning. By doing this, the excess oil in your hair will not only absorb over night, but the tossing and turning you do in your sleep will instantly add some serious body. We thank you dry shampoo, for coming to our rescue.
Check out our top 5 dry shampoos below:
1. L'Oreal TNA Fresh Dust, £10.49; lookfantastic.com
2. John Frieda Luxurious Volume Dry Shampoo, £5.89; boots.com
3. Batiste Dry Shampoo Original - Clean & Classic, £2.99; boots.com
4. Garnier Ultimate Blends, The Revitalising 7-in-1 dry shampoo, £3.99; boots.com
5. Joico Instant Refresnt, £9.55; lookfantastic.com
3) Make an eyeliner stencil
When you are in a rush, there is nothing worse than getting your eyeliner absolutely perfect, and then proceeding to smudge it across your face. OK, maybe there are some things that are worse, but you've got to admit, eyeliner smudging is pretty annoying.
So here is a solution to ensure you never ruin your makeup artistry again. Using a post-it note or small piece of paper, cut out your perfect cat-eye eyeliner template, and then use it to create a perfect line every time. Amazing how one little post-it note can both save time and prevent stress.
4) Master contouring
Contouring - the magical makeup trick that can completely transform your face. Unfortunately, the process of contouring seems only to be found in the skill set of the professionals, and if we have managed to figure it out (such sorcery), it is an extremely lengthy process - and we definitely do not have that kind of time in the morning.
However, today is your lucky day, as we have found the ultimate guide to contouring which you can achieve in less than 5 minutes. That's right, you heard us, 5 minutes.
The Beauty Department has presented an extremely useful infographic detailing how and where to highlight and shadow your lovely face, and with a little bit of practice, you'll be contouring like one of the pros.
Hey, if Kim Kardashian can have contouring everyday, why can't we?
5) Invest in some multi-use products
The person who came up with the idea to combine different makeup products into one handy piece was both a genius, and a person that was strapped for time. These marvellous creations can shave crucial minutes off your morning routine, whilst still making sure you look your absolute best.
Use a CC cream to conceal, protect and moisturise all in one, or a lip tint that can be used as your blusher. A liquid bronzer can also play the role of contour, eye shadow, blush or when mixed with your foundation, can give you a glorious overall glow. What is not to love about these multi-purpose makeup gems? Nothing, that's what.
Check out 5 of our favourite products below:
1. NARS The Multiple, £30; narscosmetics.co.uk
2. Smashbox Camera Ready CC Cream SPF 30 Dark Spot Correcting, £29; smashbox.co.uk
3. Benefit Benetint Rose-Tinted Lip & Cheek Stain, £24.50; benefitcosmetics.co.uk
4. No7 Beautiful Skin BB Cream, £13.50; boots.com
5. MAC Lustre Drops, £18; maccosmetics.co.uk
6) Plan, organise and conquer
When planning your outfit the night before, you make sure everything is prepped. You know which blouse, which skirt, which pair of heels and which accessory, so you go to bed feeling completely prepared. The thing is, if you think its important to plan every single detail of your outfit in order to ensure a smooth morning, why would you not plan what makeup you are going to wear?
Too often we find ourselves sat in front of our makeup unsure of whether to wear eyeliner, or if that coral lipstick is going to go with that dress. More often than not, we leave our makeup and beauty routine to the last minute and quite often we have to forego it altogether.
It is time to make a change. When planning your outfit the night before, prep which products you are going to use as well. This could be everything from foundation to highlighter, or just knowing which lipstick you think is going to look the best. Sometimes the most simple of changes turn out to be extremely effective. We like those kind of changes a lot.
Furthermore, having a well organised makeup station will not only make your mornings easier, but also your evenings, weekends, birthdays, holidays - anytime you need to do your make up! Storing makeup brushes in vintage jars and using trays for lipsticks and compacts are just a few ways you can get organised with your makeup routine, and therefore save a substantial amount of time. An organised beauty routine is a happy beauty routine.
Image: Rex Features
7) Exfoliate exfoliate exfoliate
This beauty hack is not something you will be doing in the morning, so already, you've saved yourself heaps of time and stress. Go you!
Exfoliating your face at least once a week works magic on your skin. Not only will your face feel healthy and silky smooth, it will also appear brighter and look extremely fresh! What's more, because exfoliating both smoothens your skin and helps to get rid of impurities, you will find yourself needing less and less makeup to cover up - once again saving you time.
There is no need to go out and buy an expensive facial exfoliator, because it is extremely simple to create your own at home with things you've got in your kitchen cupboards. A time and money saving endeavour is one that we can definitely get on board with.
Try one of these wonderful homemade recipes:
Image: Rex Features
8) Utilise your beauty sleep
A good beauty regime is quite often a timely one. Most of us don't have time in our day, let alone our mornings, to lather on all the lotions and potions that we think we really should be using. The things is, though our days are jam-packed and non-stop, half of our nights are usually spent asleep. In those 7-8 hours, we aren't answering emails, we aren't stressing about work, we aren't running after our children, we are doing nothing. Absolutely nothing.
We should use these wonderful, stress-free and uninterrupted hours to lather on all of those lotions and potions we otherwise do not have time for. When we sleep, our skin works overtime to repair itself by rapidly increasing cell turnover, making it an extremely effective time to apply a mask or lotion.
An overnight mask or cream will hydrate your skin and boost its natural repairing process, leading you to wake up with your skin feeling healthy and fresh, and cutting down the time of your beauty routine in the morning. If anything, utilising your sleepy time for your beauty regime makes you more productive than if you had to do it all in the morning. Take a bow, because that is impressive.
Check our top 5 pick of overnight products:
1. Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate, £36; kiehls.co.uk
2. Origins Drink Up Intensive, £23; origins.co.uk
3. Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex II, £49; esteelauder.co.uk
4. Clinique Moisture Surge Overnight Mask, £30; clinique.co.uk
5. Sarah Chapman Overnight Facial, £45; sarahchapman.net
9) Spritz Correctly
Our perfume is usually the last stage of our beauty routine, and we are often in such a rush, we end up spraying and spritzing in all random directions, ingesting some of the fumes, and running out of the door. Sound familiar? Well, we've got some top tips for you to make sure your perfume lasts all day and doesn't go to waste as it lands on the carpet and not you.
First of all, the cardinal sin of perfume application is the wrist rub. We know, we've all been told that we need to activate the scent by rubbing the freshly applied perfume on our wrists together, but we can tell you right now that this is a lie. In fact, rubbing our wrists together breaks down the molecules in the oils, ruining the scent altogether. Instead, let your wrists and other places were you spritzed air dry naturally. Alternatively, you can flap your arms around like a swan, whatever works for you.
Our next top tip is to place your scent strategically. Before you go to work in the morning, spray your perfume on your bra and underwear. This way the perfume will adhere to the fabric of your clothes, and will last all day. No more lugging around your fragrance bottle in your bag - more space for the more important things in life, like chocolate.
If you don't quite fancy spritzing your expensive perfume on your undies, knowing where to apply it on your body is key to not wasting the fragrance, as well as making sure the scent is long-lasting.
10) Red lipstick is your ally
If all else fails and you still find yourself needing to be out of bed and on a train in 5 minutes, a quick swipe of red lipstick is all you need to save the day.
Red lipstick instantly can pull your face together, giving the illusion that you have put on your makeup, despite only just having gotten out of bed a few minutes ago and finding bits of cornflakes in your hair. Describing it as a miracle worker would be an understatement.
Images: Rex Features
Words: Natalie Clark