Those of you with the inhuman ability to flawlessly apply liquid eyeliner any time and anywhere, I salute you. I hope you have a great career as a brain surgeon, or a calligrapher. For the rest of us, here’s a handy skincare, make-up, and hair guide on how to look less undead-just-out-of-bed and more Beyonce-Beytwice-Beythree-times-a-lady at the those pesky 9:00am lectures.
For essential too-early-morning shower products, try Soap&Glory’s Sugar Crush Body Scrub. The brown sugar in it will abrase any lingering residue off your skin and the smell of sweet lime will certainly clear your sinuses. If your hair is prone to grease, Aussie’s Mega Shampoo will leave no build-up (and it smells like Haribo, win-win). Or if your hair is more on the dry side, use the Miracle Moist, it works like a dream. Pretend you’re in one of those inappropriately pornographic shampoo adverts and massage it into your scalp to stimulate the hair follicles for healthier, thicker hair. Rinse thoroughly: any shampoo left in your hair will just weigh it down and make it greasy again; some shampoos can leave you just as greasy as when you started, if incorrectly washed out.
As for hair styling, keep it understated. A simple, easy, yet effective look is tousled beach waves – minimal effort, but über chic. Think Olsen Twins, or Alexa Chung. Once out of the shower, gently towel-dry your hair in downward motions: this will reduce static and therefore less frizz. For instant volume blow-dry your hair, but with your head upside-down (i.e. between your knees). Just like shampoo, avoid any hair heavy hair products; 9am doesn’t suit the Kurt Cobain look. Spritz the bottom two thirds of your hair with some salt spray, I recommend Toni&Guy Casual Sea Salt Texturising Spray to add some oomph without the stickiness of wax or the crunchiness of hairspray. Work it in with your hands in scrunching motions, and voilà. Smokin’ hot.
After a pore-cleansing hot shower, all you need is toner and moisturiser. The naturally invigorating combo of antibacterial Tea tree and soothing Witch hazel is perfect for combating break-outs and acne. Pat some Boots Tea Tree & Witch Hazel Cleansing And Toning Lotion all over your face, focusing on any problem areas, such as chin, forehead, nose, etc. Don’t forget your neck! Moisturiser can be too heavy for youthful skin, so try Simple’s Kind To Skin Moisture Boost Hydro Mist Spray AKA spray-on moisturiser, with vitamins and plant extracts. Close your eyes, and three sprays should do it. If you have acne, as many do, try a green concealer. Yes, green. The green counteracts the red of the break-out, neutralising it so that skin-toned make-up will go on smoother and provide real coverage.
Now for the fun bit: make-up. We all have different preferences. If you prefer make-up light, go for a moisturising tinted lip balm like Vaseline Lip Therapy Rosy Lips, and forgo regular mascara for a clear one which will open up your eyes without any harsh black, e.g. Natural Collection Lash Care Mascara. For any problem areas, try a good cream concealer, as its texture blends like foundation. This Coastal Scents Camo Quad has 4 different shades including yellow-toned for redness and a white highlighter colour.
If your choice is a little more make-up, go for a BB Cream, such as Garnier Miracle Skin Perfector Daily All-In-One BB Blemish Balm Cream. It is less cloggy than foundation and makes your skin glow. Avoid smudgy lipstick or sticky lipgloss and go for a matte lip stain – Revlon’s Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain (above in ‘Crush’, a deep berry pink) is perfect for this, as you can dab it on for a flush of colour, or apply it like lipstick for really vibrant lips. Finish it off with a few coats of Barry M Bold Waterproof Mascara, as waterproof mascaras are not only less likely to smudge or disappear, but also give the thickness effect of eyeliner, as well as long lashes.
Now you’re ready to face the cruel 9:00am world with a fierce ‘n’ fresh visage which screams ‘not only am I awake, but I am workin’ it’. Just try not to fall asleep at 9:05am.