Here's how to save time while still looking your best.

By Alexandra Churchill
Updated September 01, 2020
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An extensive beauty routine just isn't in the cards for all of us. Still, the fact that you're crunched for time or don't have the patience for an hour-long beauty regimen doesn't mean you can't look and feel good for the day ahead. To help you save time, we're sharing tips to make the most of your makeup routine. It's about cutting down on your products—you don't really need a full face of foundation, concealer, and powder every single day—or substituting them for multi-taskers (think an all-in-one blush, eyeshadow, and lipstick pen). It's also about completely rethinking the way you spend your time in front of the mirror at the start of every day.

Tone your face with cold water.

Why cold? Hot water has the tendency to dry out your skin (contributing to your need for adding extra moisturizers and toners later in the day), whereas a splash of ice-cold water temporarily tightens the skin and "seals" your pores to prevent dirt from clogging them. In the shower, cold water helps to increase the shine and strength of your hair. Martha herself swears by a 20-second blast of cold water at the end of her shower, followed up with one of her favorite facial sprays.

Invest in a quality bronzer.

Using a rounded blush brush, sweep bronzer over your face to contour the nose, fill the hollows of your cheeks, and even color the eyelids (with a smaller brush) to give yourself a warm glow.

Brush your lips as you brush your teeth.

It may sound silly, but it's a low-key multi-tasking tip: After you're done cleaning your teeth, rinse your toothbrush to ensure it's free of toothpaste (which can be dehydrating on the skin) and then use the bristles to gently scrub your lips. Do this twice a day every day for some major exfoliating and you'll notice your lipstick applies much more evenly. It's the best way to keep your lips soft and supple, and get your pearly whites even whiter.

Wait before you dry your hair.

This may sound counterintuitive, but blow-drying your hair when it's sopping wet actually ends up taking longer. Here's what to do instead: Wrap your hair in an absorbent towel and go about the rest of your beauty routine. As the last step before you get dressed, unwrap your hair and blow-dry it in a steam-free bathroom. The remaining moisture in your hair will help it set and the lack of steam helps prevent frizzing.

Brush your hair with dry shampoo.

No time to wash your hair? You can absorb excess oil with dry shampoo with each hairbrush stroke. Just be sure to check the label for corn, rice, or oat starches, which are key in avoiding that apparent chalky residue.

Use facial moisturizer as a hair tamer.

Some of your go-to products can do double duty, like facial moisturizer. After blending moisturizer into your skin, use the excess from your fingers to smoothen out unruly locks and frizzy flyaways.

Swap in your products for makeup multi-taskers.

In the morning, just finding your products is half the battle. And rummaging through makeup drawers and messy medicine cabinets takes up a good chunk of time. Instead, use multitasking products like a blush you can use on your lips, or a DIY beauty treatment, like coconut oil, that you can use to hydrate skin, fight frizz, and soothe chapped lips.

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