Show of hands for how many of you reading this think doing a full face of makeup and styling your hair in five minutes is a complete sham. Oh, all of you? Well, I can't blame you. I was one of you. For so long, I laughed at the prospect of getting anything other than my mascara done in five minutes. However, I've now made it my personal mission to prove both myself and all of you wrong. Enter: Elite Daily's series, Ready In 5. Consisting of actually cool beauty tutorials, this series will break timely beauty looks down into five simple steps, all of which, together, can actually be completed in five minutes, so you have more time to focus on the plans that come next.
If there were an award for successfully being late for class no matter how hard I tried, I would've been late to accepting that award at the beginning of college. My mornings involved waking up in a panic 15 minutes before my 9 a.m., throwing on the nearest clean top and whatever leggings I could find, and then plopping down in front of a mirror, getting so sucked into my lengthy beauty routine, I didn't leave my room until 9:15 — on a good day. However, once I settled on a quick, everyday beauty routine that made sense for me — and only ate up five minutes of my time — my life changed. This girl was in her seat before class started with a full beat, even when I woke up, say, 15 minutes before that 9 a.m. Hell, I even had time for a Starbucks run.
If you're skeptical that you can pare down a full, everyday beauty routine to just five minutes, you have every right to be. But the secret to doing so is all about strategic products, multi-use picks, and keeping what I'd like to call my "late stash" (the products I use for when I'm running late) in a separate bag on my vanity. Separating your late stash limits the time you spend rummaging through a crowded makeup bag, multi-use products cut back on the amount of products needed, and strategizing your picks allows you to make it look like you spent a ton of time on your beauty routine when you really didn't.
Here's how I was able to go from fast asleep to in my seat in just a few minutes.
Step 1: Prep
Time: ~10 seconds
I love a lengthy, luxurious skin care routine as much as the next person, but when you're late, your exfoliator, toner, and expensive serum from France will have to take a backseat. After you brush your teeth and wash your face, focus on quickly moisturizing with whatever your favorite moisturizer is. I used Boscia's Cactus Water Moisturizer ($38, Boscia) on myself. The formula is lightweight and perfect to use before applying your makeup — you won't have to wait for it to sink into your skin — and the aloe vera in the formula helps soothe skin's redness and irritation.
Step 2: Complexion
Time: ~2 minutes
Repeat after me: We! Stan! Multi-use! Products!
I find products like tinted moisturizers are great to use when you want to combine moisturizing with just a light sheen of pigment. But sometimes you just want something with a little extra oomph. As much as I embrace my dark under-eye circles as a sign of the hard work I do, there are some mornings when I just don't wanna see 'em, you know?
For my complexion, I used only three products, all of which serve multiple purposes and all of which deliver a little extra oomph. First, I used PÜR's 4-in-1 Love Your Selfie Longwear Foundation and Concealer ($36, PÜR) — a foundation and concealer in one, so it evens out skin tone and slides right over your under-eye area in one fell swoop. Even better, the applicator comes with a pump if you prefer to apply it to the back of your hand and sponge on from there, as well as a doe-foot wand applicator if you just prefer to spot-cover.
I then spritzed a little of Tatcha's The Satin Skin Mist ($48, Tatcha) all over my face. This mist works as both a setting powder — the formula contains teeny, tiny clay particles to accomplish this — and a setting spray, which reduces any unwanted shine, stops creasing, and sets your complexion for the remainder of the day. To put it bluntly, sign me TF up.
Now, if you thought I didn't save time to add a little ~color~ to my complexion, then I'm low-key offended because clearly you underestimated me and my makeup. For a little bit of glow and blush, I applied a touch of Charlotte Tilbury's Glowgasm Beauty Light Wand High Blush ($38, Charlotte Tilbury) in the shade "Pinkgasm" to my cheeks. The product comes out of an attached cushion applicator you can dab directly on the areas you'd like some color. I applied it on the outer apples of my cheeks and blended outward using my fingers and up toward my temples. Bam. Instant full coverage. Instant set. Instant glow. Instant "I look like I got a full eight hours of sleep and not like I actually woke up, like, three minutes ago."
Step 3: Eyes
Time: ~1 minute, 30 seconds
As much as you and I both love our favorite 24-pan eyeshadow palette, it's not her time to shine today. I know you love her, but there's no time. Instead, this is where you need to pick your products strategically and choose fast, easy-to-use products that pack a major punch. As a first step on my eyes, I used the same Charlotte Tilbury Beauty Light Wand ($38, Charlotte Tilbury) I used on my cheeks to give my lids a wash of rosy color, blending the pigment out toward my eyebrow with my finger.
Then came the real showstopper: a colored mascara. While a regular black or brown mascara is perfectly fine for every day, a colored mascara is a quick way to spice up a beauty look and make it seem as if you put a lot of time and thought into your ~lewk~. I first applied a bit of L'Oreal Paris' Voluminous Lash Paradise Primer ($11, Ulta) to give my lashes a light base that would make any color really pop and followed up with several quick swipes of ColourPop's BFF Volumizing Mascara ($8, ColourPop) in the lavender shade "Purple Prose." Immediately, my eyes popped with a frame of light purple, and I looked as if I had spent hours carefully crafting a colorful editorial beat. It really took me about 30 seconds. Can you believe?!
As a final step, I brushed on e.l.f. Cosmetics' Wow Brow Gel ($4, e.l.f. Cosmetics) through my brows to fluff them up, fill them out, and, frankly, keep them in place so no one would know how violently I toss and turn.
Step 4: Lips
Time: ~10 seconds
You know what you don't have time for when you're running super late? A fussy, messy liquid lipstick. You know what you do have time for that's just as cute and fun? A lip gloss. In literally 10 seconds, I swiped on a bit of Patrick Ta's Major Glow Lip Shine ($22, Patrick Ta) and, as Lil Mama would say, my lip gloss was poppin'. The formula isn't sticky, packs a ton of shine, and gave me just enough tint to pull together the other elements of my makeup. Hell, my whole damn beat was poppin' at this point.
Step 5: Hair
Time: ~1 minute, 10 seconds
Finally, we've reached the last step, and I feel you if you think this step is the most terrifying and/or impossible to get done in a five-minute window. After all, taming just-slept-on hair was a process for me pretty much every day in college — one that used to involve aggressive sighing, feelings of utter hopelessness, and occasional crying. Thank God for the hack I'm about to share with you and therapy, amirite?
I am a violent sleeper. I know this about myself, so I sleep with my hair in a twisted top knot to protect it throughout the night, making it easier to deal with in the morning. Starting with my hair in that same, slept-in twisted top knot, I rolled up the scarf part of a Forever 21 Scarf Scrunchie ($5, Forever 21) and tied it loose around my neck. Then, I slid it up around my head like a headband to push back stray flyaways and wispy hairs around my face. For the grand finale, I let my hair down out of the top knot, fingering through the curls the twist had made to reveal bouncy, natural looking waves and curls with a cute AF headband, to boot.
Sorry, but who's this girl who looks like she just got a full night's rest and still woke up early to do her beauty routine? No one is ever going to know you woke up exactly five minutes ago from a deep AF REM cycle. Now, consider yourself ready to start your new, always-on-time life. Your professor won't even know what hit 'em.
So, how does that sound? Still don't believe me that I (and you!) can get this look done in five minutes? Hey, I get it. Seeing is believing and whatever. So, in the spirit of giving, I present to you proof that miracles really can happen: a #ReadyIn5 video tutorial.
In this tutorial, I'll take you through the steps and products needed to complete the look as we race against the clock. It's thrilling. It's suspenseful. But most importantly, it's funny AF to watch. Get comfy, and follow along with the video below to see how my look is actually ready in five. Comment on the video or DM me on Instagram to suggest looks you'd like to see broken down in the future: