The 60-Second No-Makeup Makeup Kit for Busy Moms
We get the best raw deal. We live in a world where we get to "do it all". We get to work, raise kids, get PHDs, have a social life, start businesses, change the world, all the while look well-rested and put-together. Some of us are even Presidents or Prime Ministers or CEOs. The only thing missing? Another 24 hours in a day.
I'm not a time-management expert nor am I a makeup expert. What I'm writing in this post is the solution to my personal experience of having to put some visual enhancement on my face during the 60-second window between breakfast and dashing out the door with my two toddlers in tow.
I've had years of philosophical debates with myself about wearing or not wearing makeup and I've explored both extremes. On one side of the spectrum, I practiced ballroom dancing back in college, and Lord knows how ballroom dancers wear the gaudiest makeup, complete with fake lashes and fake tans. When in doubt, just cake on another layer. I also had the pleasure of working for the LVMH Group AND at the Parisian cosmetics emporiums Galeries Lafayette and Printemps, so I had tons of makeup products to experiment for fun.
On the other hand, I do believe that we should embrace ourselves for who we truly are, including our woke-up-like-this-no-makeup faces. Society imposes a funny set of beauty standards on how we should look, and a great way to retaliate is to join the #nomakeupchallenge (thanks Ms. Alicia Keys). When no-makeup is not an option, just take the cue from Ms. Wintour, the fashion high priestess herself, make sure you always sport a pair of oversized sunglasses.
But I'll say that on most days, my makeup philosophy lands somewhere in the middle. A little bit of makeup, or physical photoshopping if you will, does tend to make me feel more like a lady rather than the scrambled-egg-smelling, pyjama-wearing mother-of-two who yells a lot (that's my twin sister who shows up at our house every morning). In some ways, makeup is our modern day armor, when we wear it, we do feel slightly more equipped to tackle the world out there.
Here are my favorite products for the 60-second no-makeup makeup kit. Over the years I've learned to boil down to the essentials. These are bite-sized products that easily fit into a small makeup bag so I don't have to switch bags when I pack for travel. The best thing about these products is that they don't require any makeup skills or special tools. When you have kids screaming in the background, the simplicity of these products make the 60 seconds worthwhile.
You need a product that does it all while you smear it all over your face under 10 seconds. Some sort of BB/CC cream that moisturizes, has at least SPF 30, and evens out skin tone in a flash. My favorite products are NARS Velvet Matte Skin Tint (I use Alaska) and (I use Ginger). They both have light and smooth textures with just the right amount of pigments.
NARS "The Multiple" Stick is a magic wand that gives the illusion that I'm well-rested after a choppy night changing diapers and crib sheets covered in vomit. Sorry for the graphic image, but it's a true story after the recent stomach flu season.
You simply dab it on the apples of your cheeks and right under the brow bones, and suddenly your complexion looks plump with a rosy glow. Like most NARS products, the pigments are rather saturated, so you can easily blend it out with your fingers in a hurry.
I personally use the Maui shade, it's a dusty rose that is rather universally appealing.
Instead of layering and tracing with multiple brushes, simply use your fingers to blend the two "light and shadow" shades from NARS Duo Eyeshadow "Bellissima" on the eyelids. It's really like that exercise in art class where we learn to draw a 3D apple with a 2B pencil.
I am born with very sparse, or as my mother calls them, Mona Lisa eyebrows. Over the years I've tried pencils, powder and setting gel, and some other sorceries, but ultimately I found Benefits Gimme Brow to be the perfect product. With this little wand, you paint, tint, define eyebrows in just a few brushes. The result is natural and it doesn't smudge. A perfect solution for people with light eyebrows.
If you want to do your makeup in under 60 seconds, you have to forget about eyeliners. A mascara that doesn't smudge is your best friend. Most, really, most mascaras I've tried over the years end up smudging and making me look like a panda in a few hours' time, but not this one: Benefits They're Real Mascara. Two strokes each side and you're done.
The final touch to the 60-second countdown. A neutral shade that's just a bit more vibrant than your natural lip color is the key. I've found NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Dolce Vita to be the perfect shade for me, it's a dusty rose that also seems to be universally appealing. This formula is creamy and smooth, highly-pigmented, and it doesn't dry out my lips. I like the lip pencil format because you have more control when pressed for time, but the classic lipstick format is also nice.
But the best is the name. Getting a luxurious 60 seconds for myself for a tiny sense of control in a whirlwind mom's life... dolce vita indeed.