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Simplify your morning routine and still look great!

Time-saving beauty tips for busy moms

by Erika Valente  |  13067 views  |  2 comments  |       Rate this now! 

At my house, Rush Hour is from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. when 6 people are running around trying to eat breakfast, digging through clothes in the dryer hoping to find their favorite shirt, fighting about who had more time with the flat-iron and blaming each other for stealing a missing lip gloss. Also, they find this the ideal time to tell me they need a permission slip filled out, they’re out of notebook paper, or they need two dozen cupcakes by 10:00 a.m.

Unfortunately, getting my teenage kids to prepare and organize themselves the night before is like listing “Zac Posen Abbey Satchel (in red)” on my Christmas list and expecting Santa to come through - not gonna happen.

Instead, the most realistic way for me to deal with Rush Hour and make it out the door on time is to simplify my own morning routine. This can be tricky, as I certainly don’t want to look like I’ve simplified my routine. I prefer to look as if I’ve spent the last hour in front of my vanity mirror leisurely sipping coffee while expertly blending my eye shadow with a #224 MAC makeup brush.

The most effective time saving tactic I’ve found is to use multi-purpose beauty products. A tinted moisturizer with sunscreen combines three steps into one! My favorite is Laura Mercier Oil-Free Tinted Moisturizer SPF 20, but Stila makes a great one, too.

A cheek & lip stain gives a nice rosy glow to both cheeks and lips and is a breeze to apply. I've found that Benefit Benetint works great. A tiny amount looks super natural and lasts all day long. Another great product almost every cosmetic company has out right now is a lipstick-gloss. This formula has the pigment and lasting power of a lipstick, but feels more like a gloss. Try MAC Slimshine or Shiseido Automatic Lip Crayon.

I don’t shave any time off my hair routine for fear of risking a bad hair day, but another trick that saves me a little time is to keep my mascara, lipstick/lip gloss, and powder in a little makeup bag in my purse. I save these finishing touches for the looooong red lights on the way to my youngest daughter’s pre-school (I don’t suggest applying mascara at red-lights---too risky) or while sitting in park at my older kids’ school waiting for them to get out of the car, adjust themselves (smooth down hair, sweep bangs to side, pull up jeans, pull down t-shirt, etc, etc…) and grab their bags before they step out from behind my mini-van and strut across the lawn to school (at least a three minute process.)

Any last-minute powdering can be done once I’m sitting at my desk. Voila! No one has to know what my morning was like.

About the Author

Erika is the mother of three demanding teenagers and one demanding 5 year old. She obsesses about beauty products in her spare time at

Read more by Erika Valente

2 comments so far...

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    Flag as inappropriate Posted by uytikktdy on 26th February 2012

  • Thank you for this - I really like MAC and going to try the Slimshine. Does it stay on for a decent amount of time (anything over 10 minutes?)

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Nataly on 6th August 2007