The Career Girl's Guide to Beauty | A Quick, Natural, Long-Lasting Routine, Tips & Handbag Essentials

In honour of starting my new career, I thought I'd put together a little 'guide to beauty' of things I've learned since starting my first full-time office job last year. This is really applicable to a variety of women, whether you're studying, a full-time mum or just don't have a lot of time to spend on beauty, but I'm starting my new job shortly so I thought I'd talk about it in the context most relevant to me. I'm sharing my time-saving tips and the best products for if you love beauty but you're short on time and need something that looks natural and will last you the day.

AM Skincare

When I wake up in the morning, the first thing I do is start my skincare routine. When I posted it in full (read that here, as it also contains more in-depth reviews on the products below) a lot of people asked me how long it takes me and it's actually not at all time-consuming as I tend to multitask and perform various steps whilst I'm doing other things.

Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel | £28

I start by smoothing a pump or two of the Oskia Renaissance Cleansing Gel across my face. It smells really nice and although I'm not sure I'd re-purchase it at £28, it's a nice step in my routine as it leaves my skin feeling fresher and softer. I rinse it off and it  emulsifies so breaks down easily.

REN Flash Rinse 1 Minute Facial | £32

If my skin is looking a bit dull and lifeless I use this product. Realistically, who has time to do a 15-minute face mask at 6am on weekday? This is the perfect alternative. I give it a bit of a shake, apply it to my skin and by the time I'm in the shower and I've warmed up a bit, it can be rinsed off. Although it's only a quick treatment, it definitely perks up my skin and makes it look a lot less tired.

La Roche Posay Serozinc Spray | £8.50

After my shower it's time for a quick spritz of Serozinc, which acts as a toner. It calms any blemishes and soothes blotchiness and redness, also mattifying my skin. I find a face spray really refreshing and an essential step in my morning routine. For dry and sensitive skin types, check out the Caudalie Grape Water instead.

The Body Shop Vitamin C Glow-Boosting Moisturiser | £16

I put on my moisturiser after I've done my hair so that whilst I apply my body care products and get dressed it has time to sink in before I apply my makeup. You only need a small amount of this and its gel-based formula makes it fast-absorbing. I find it so refreshing and hydrates my skin whilst providing a serious injection of life.

Avene Soothing Eye Contour Cream | £10

I also pop on an eye cream to de-puff and hydrate the eye area. My current favourite is from Avene as it isn't too thick but still refreshes my tired eyes.

Haircare, & Body Care

For my hair and body routine, it's all about products that are quick to apply, perform multiple functions and will last me throughout the day.

Soap & Glory Whipped Clean Shower Butter | £7

This is a lovely, nourishing shower butter that comes in a tube so there's no annoying shower balancing act. The reason I like this is because it soothes my dry skin but also it's amazing for shaving your legs so if you suddenly think you need to shave you don't have to rinse this off and apply a different product.

Mitchum Women's Pure Fresh 48-Hour Anti-Perspirant Deodorant | £3.20

Not the kind of product I'd ever normally blog about but maybe that's because I've never tried one that's done it for me like this! I hadn't used a roll-on in years as I they grossed me out a bit, but I just apply this after my shower and you only need to use it once during the day. It honestly works and it works all day long. A bit TMI but sprays kind of stop you smelling but don't necessarily stop the sweatiness even when they're branded as 'antiperspirant', whereas this completely does.

Palmer's Cocoa Butter Rapid Moisture Spray Lotion* | £5.99

I love this lotion as it's so quick to apply and is really lightweight. Despite adding amazing moisture and leaving my skin feeling soft, it absorbs into the skin really quickly.

Batiste Original Dry Shampoo | £4.99 (400ml)

I'm sure we're all familiar with this! I tend to go for the original scent as it's just a clean, inoffensive fragrance. If I know my hair could do with a wash but I don't have time to, then I apply it liberally the night before. If my hair just needs a slight de-grease in the morning I'll spray this into my roots and work it in.

Vidal Sassoon Easy Wrap Wand* | £29.99

If you read my post on this you'll know I think it's a corker! I love this because it's so quick and easy. You can easily just curl a few bits, comb through with your fingers and look immediately more polished. You only need to have the hair wrapped for a few seconds too so this can be a 5-minute job and the waves hold really well. If it's the first day after washing or my hair is having 'one of those days' I'll finish with a light spray of L'Oreal Elnett for a bit of natural hold.

Charles Worthington Volume & Bounce Texturising Spray | £6.99

If you don't have time to backcomb your hair in the morning but it's looking a bit flat then this is your best friend! A few spritzes of this in the roots, a bit of scrunching and you're good to go.

Diptyque Eau de Toilette in Philosykos | £75 (100ml) | post

I finish off with a few sprays of Diptyque's Philosykos, as I find it a nice, classy, inoffensive scent. The main influences are fig and cedar wood.

Makeup Routine

For makeup I tend to favour sophisticated mattes for work. However it's also about product that will take me through the day with minimal touch-ups and that are quick and easy to apply in a rush or on-the-go.

Essie Nail Polish in Eternal Optimist | £7.99

I generally do my nails the night before. As much as I love my Barry M Speedy Quick Dry polishes, I've chosen Eternal Optimist from Essie because this only needs one coat and you can finish it off with the Elegant Touch Rapid Dry Spray. I love this rose-nude colour as it's professional, goes with everything and lasts a few days before chipping.

L'Oreal Infallible Mattifying Primer Base | £7.99

I really like this primer as it doesn't need an excessive amount of time left after moisturising to apply correctly. You simply smooth on a small amount and it makes my face stay relatively shine-free throughout the day and gives my makeup additional staying power.

Nars Sheer Glow Foundation | £31

This is my perfect workday foundation as it's a nice medium coverage that looks natural on the skin. The finish is semi-matte so shine-free but not too drying (it definitely allows your natural glow through). It's also nice and long-lasting.

Urban Decay Naked Skin Concealer | £17.50

More and more I'm reaching for this over my beloved Nars - what's wrong with me?! I've picked the Urban Decay as it's a great all-rounder for both under eyes and on mild-to-moderate blemishes and redness. The texture is fluffy and blends in seamlessly with minimal effort (I use the Real Techniques Setting Brush).

Bourjois Healthy Balance Compact Powder | £8.99

I finish up by applying a little bit of my trusty Bourjois powder. It helps to reduce any shine and set my makeup but it never goes cakey or powdery (so also perfect for touch-ups throughout the day). 

MAC Sheertone Blush in Blushbaby* | £18.50

I personally feel that matte blusher is best for a professional environment, but they're often trickier to work with than something with shimmer. However Blushbaby is an exception; I love the Sheertone formula as it's very natural pinky-brown on the cheeks and has a nice level of pigmentation whilst applying nicely.

Maybelline 24-Hour Colour Tattoo Eyeshadow in Creamy Beige | £4.99

I love my Maybelline Colour Tattoos and this is the perfect shade for workdays. It's a warm brown-taupe shade which gives a matte look but does have a slight sheen to it. I simply apply this with my finger and blend it out; no need for a primer.

MAC Pro Palette Refill Pans in Cork and Swiss Chocolate | £10 each

If I'm in a rush, I will leave it at Creamy Beige but if I have a few extra minutes I will take Cork (a slightly warm-toned brown with a semi-matte finish) on a large crease brush and softly blend it out. I then take Swiss Chocolate (a deep reddish-brown matte) on a smaller crease brush to deepen the outer part of the crease. 

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Scorch | £15.50

Although a matte eye look is a bit more sophisticated, I can never resist a bit of shimmer and an eyeliner is the perfect way to sneak some in subtly. This is a beautiful golden-bronze colour that works really well on the waterline and tight line with any brown-toned neutral eye look. These pencils also stay in place without transferring all day long.

Soap & Glory Archery Brow Pencil & Brush | £8

I love this brow pencil as you don't need to sharpen it, it just twists up and stays sharp. I quickly shape my brows and fill in any gaps with the pencil end then brush them out for a natural look with the spooly.

Benefit Roller Lash Mascara | £19.50 | post

This is my perfect everyday mascara as it adds really great length and definition, as well as long-lasting curl. It's lovely for the daytime as it gives a lovely natural look.

MAC Lip Pencil in Spice | £12.50

This is a gorgeous warm caramel-nude lip pencil that adds depth to any sheer lip colour as well as increasing wear time  Obviously you can skip this step if you have to! 

MAC Lustre Lipstick in Jubilee | £15.50

Finally I put a bit of Jubilee on top, which is my perfect 'my lips but better' sheer lipstick. It's a really nice pinky-brown shade and although it isn't the most long-lasting it's minimal effort to touch up and you don't get the faded lip effect.

On-the-Go Beauty

There are some things I never do when I'm out-and-about like eyeliner (which puts me at risk of stabbing myself in the eye over any speed bumps) and foundation (I just find it too messy). However there are a few things you can sneakily do on the train or bus! As long as you're not spraying things or opening nail polish, I say that people who think doing your makeup on public transport should just get over it. There are also several things I keep a second one of in my handbag so I'm never without them.

Mascara - If I absolutely have to I'll throw my mascara into my bag and do it when I get to the office (definitely not on the bus, again for stabby-eye reasons).

Lipstick - A no-brainer. Keep a little compact mirror in your bag and if you need to you can do your lipstick on the way as odds are you already keep it in your bag for touch-ups. I also keep a lip balm in my bag.

Concealer - This isn't something I'd do on the road but I keep a spare in my handbag for emergency touch-ups.

Powder - Again, another handbag staple as it's easy to apply on-the-go and it's also essential if you're prone of facial shine throughout the day.

Fragrance - I keep a body spray in my bag for if I forget to apply perfume or just for a nice bit of scent if I feel my perfume fading in the afternoon.

Eyeliner - Another one I don't do on the go but since getting hay fever for the first time this year, I've started packing eyeliner in my bag.

PM Skincare

In the evening, the first thing I do after dinner is take off my makeup and do my skincare routine, as if I leave it really late I know I'll be too exhausted! These are my favourite time-saving products that do the job before bed.

DHC Deep Cleansing Oil | £21.50 (200ml)

I've tried a lot of cleansers that claim to melt your makeup away (I did an entire post on them here) but this has to be one of my favourites. It's gentle, fragrance-free and one pump massaged onto your skin and across your closed eyes is enough to remove makeup once rinsed.

Bioderma Sensibio H2O Micellar Water | £10.20 (250 ml)

Micellar waters really are a miracle product for people who may not have a lot of time for themselves to spend on skincare. I apply a little bit of this to a cotton wool pad and run it over my face and eyes to remove any last traces of makeup. 

If you have time you can then go back in with the DHC for a second cleanse before rinsing, as it leaves the skin amazingly clean and soft.

First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads | £12 (for 28)

These are really handy as the pads are already soaked in an AHA solution. This is an acid exfoliant toner so helps to uncover glowing skin if you're prone to dullness as well as improving the look of old scars and hyper-pigmentation.

Origins Drink Up Intensive Overnight Mask | £23 (100ml)

When you're short on time, overnight treatments that do the work whilst you sleep are your best friend. I love this because it acts as a night cream as well. I simply apply a thin layer of it to my skin and by morning it feels much softer and looks more hydrated.

So there you have it: my fuss-free workday beauty routine!

What are your favourite weekday products and top tips?


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  1. This is a great post, Jasmine, since you take us from morning to night! Fab!

    Angie x | Chocolate & Lipstick || UK Beauty and Lifestyle Blog

  2. You have got the speedy yet effective routine down!! I'm with you on so many of these products! Oh and I now need Eternal Optimist in my collection...another neutral pink won't hurt, right? ;)

    Style Sunrise☀


    1. You will honestly get so much use out of it! :) xx

  3. I feel the same way about the Oskia resaissance gel. Whilst I love it, I'm not sure if I'll repurchase entirely. However loved the post girl!

    Georgia | The Weekend Attic - Personal Style, Beauty and Lifestyle

  4. Such an great post and although it seems like a lot in time I guess that it doesn't take long if you do it every morning :)

    Pams Stuff and Things

  5. LOVE all these tips, I'm always looking for mid-week pick me ups that don't take a lot of time. Need to try the Origins mask for that reason, love that it's an overnight one :) Definitely want to give the L'Oreal primer a go as well, the more matte my skin is the better as it only gets shinier throughout the day!

    Kat | www.kathorrocks.com

  6. Fab post hun, really love your picks :) I’m actually really loving Mitchum products at the moment haha. Bushbaby looks so stunning, and definitely added to my wishlist :)The S&G brow pencil is ace, I agree I love how you can just twist it and it’s continually sharp, and the product itself is just fab :)

    Charlee XO | CharmedCharlee

  7. I loved reading this post, really interesting to read. I love using Mitchum products, they are so so good.

  8. Great post - wish I was as well organised in the beauty land as you! I need to start taking care of my skin more! x


  9. Love this post - so detailed! MAC Spice looks beautiful! :) x

    Phoebe | Phoebe’s Diaries

  10. Loved the post, and your makeup picks are exactly what i'll use for myself if I had all of that, but I'm definitely going to buy that Mac blush its so gorgeous.
    What shade UD concealer do you use? I'm thinking of trying that one.

    Sam - Beautydetour | Bloglovin' | Etsy

  11. Such a great post - I always keep my Bourjois Healthy Balance Powder with a small fluffy brush to keep oily areas matte all day!

    Lucy | www.foreverseptemberr.blogspot.co.uk

  12. Love what you have picked out! The Blushbaby blush is gorgeous! I love matte blushers and eyeshadows so will definitely be checking these out!

    Danielle's Beauty Blog

  13. The Avene eye cream sounds good, I've been looking for a few different options. Batiste is a lifesaver! I always carry a tinted lipbalm with me because it adds some colour when I can't be bothered to put a lipstick on and it stops my lips drying out whilst I'm travelling :)

    Velvet Blush

  14. You've got everything covered, from morning to the evening :) Love that shade of the Essie nail polish! And the Origins mask is one of my favourite when my skin need extra hydration! x

    Mummy’s Beauty Corner

  15. That Batiste dry shampoo literally saves my life somedays!

    Liz | lotsofloveliz

  16. I have been wanting to try the Ren brand, but haven't figured out where to start! I swear by Living Proof primer for my hair. It helps keep my hair oil free for at least a couple days! xo

    Kelsey | www.abalancingpeach.com

  17. Great post, I've made a note of some of these products as they seem brilliant! I admire the organisation you put into your skincare and makeup!

    Paris x

  18. this is such a nifty guide for all the awesome working girls out there. glad that you've put helpful descriptions too and prices.

    i've got a nifty beauty discovery too, do check it out here: 

    Jessica | notjessfashion.com

  19. Thank you for your comments :) hope this introduced you to some helpful tips and products xx


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