I'll hold my hands up and admit I'm high maintenance. Ideally I give myself a good hour to get ready in the morning. However, sometimes your alarm doesn't go off, or you need to rush out to get an early-morning train or whatever but you still want to have something on your face. These are my top products for those kinds of days! Personally I find a good guideline is:
- 2 minutes on the base
- 2 minutes on concealer
- 2 minutes for eyebrows
- 1 minute for eyeshadow and liner
- 1 minute to apply a bit of mascara
- 1 minute popping on a bit of blusher
- 1 minute on a lip product (optional, as you can do this later if you need to)
This is perfect for when you've just got to cleanse and go, as it's very hydrating on the skin (but not in a shiny/greasy way!) It's so quick and easy to apply and gives a nice amount of coverage, so it looks like you just have flawless skin! It evens out my skin tone and goes some way to covering up imperfections. The Sephora Pro Airbrush #55 is absolutely incredible for applying this in just a couple of swipes with no brush strokes or makeup-covered fingers to clean up.
My skin is fine in terms of blemishes at the moment so if I have time I'll buff a little of my Urban Decay Naked Skin (post) over any marks, as it blends in easily with a lighter base. However when I'm short on time, my dark circles are the main priority and for those, I reach for this Maybelline Concealer. It isn't really heavy but it gives nice coverage and the shade Nude is quite brightening on me. The applicator (which seems to evoke strong reactions!) means it practically blends itself in and takes seconds to apply. A quick blend with my trusty Real Techniques Setting Brush and I'm good to go. It's a pretty new purchase but I'm also liking the Bourjois Radiance Reveal Concealer if you want something that's lightweight with decent coverage but has more of a peachy correcting tone.
YSL Touche Eclat | £25
Lucky people who don't have major eye bags can skip this step but for me concealing is probably the most time-consuming part of my routine (as in, if I set aside a 30 minutes to do my makeup, half of that will be on my base!) So I finish up by applying a bit of this under the eyes and going back in with the Real Techniques Setting Brush. It's fantastic for highlighting under the eyes so you don't need to cake on a really heavy concealer to disguise darkness. I'm not as fond of the colours but the L'Oreal Lumi Magique Concealer does a similar job for a fraction of the price.
I keep a face powder in my bag, so if I'm in a rush I skip that step for now and go straight to blusher. The KIKO formula is one of my favourites as it isn't thin or greasy and lasts well even on my skin (which makeup seems to slide off!) The stick makes it so quick and easy to apply with a quick swipe on each cheek and a few seconds of dabbing to blend it in for a nice, natural flush of colour. Golden Peach is a Nars Orgasm-eque shade that (as the name suggests) is a peachy tone with a gold shimmer running through it, so it's very easy to wear.
Using a stick eyeshadow not only means you can swipe it on your lids in seconds, but you can also use it to line the eyes. This is the perfect everyday neutral bronze-brown dewy shimmer (a more affordable option would be KIKO's Stick Eyeshadow in 06, or for something more accessible but unfortunately not in stick form; Maybelline's On & On Bronze). The formula is really creamy before it sets into place, so you can take a second to blend out the edges before taking this under the eye to line it. It looks so multidimensional on the lids it's almost as though you're wearing two or three different eyeshadows.
If I'm in a mad rush and skipping the time-consuming winged liner, I need to make up for that with my lashes! Lash Sensational gives me serious curl, length and volume within seconds, so it's the one I reach for. It's seriously black in colour and seems to coat even the most non-existent lashes. Best of all: it does this in just one coat.
NYX Tinted Brow Mascara | £5.50
If I've had my brows shaped and tinted fairly recently then this is enough in itself. If it's been a while and I need to fake the shape a bit, I use the Soap & Glory Archery Brow Pencil to even them up a little before going in with this. I love this tinted brow gel as it isn't clumpy or too thick with fibres but it still adds some fullness (without the crispy feeling). I have the shade Expresso, which is a little warm but works for my very dark brown hair colour. I also love the tiny brush as it makes it so easy to control where the product goes, because let's face it; if the product is going everywhere and you have to today things up afterwards you're not going to save much time!
This is the kind of lip product you can apply without a mirror and it acts as a 2-in-1 as it has a nourishing balm formula. Curviest Caramel is a gorgeous warm pinky-brown nude that goes with just about any makeup look so it's great to grab when I'm halfway out of the door. The Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment in Petal (post) is also lovely but I'm aware that I talk about it all the time!
What are your favourite quick and easy makeup products?