As a self-designated skincare aficionado, I appreciate the benefits of a well-curated, multi-step skincare routine as much as anyone. But I also enjoy sleep and free time. So I’ll be honest: I don’t always feel like taking ten or fifteen minutes to give my skin the luxurious pampering it deserves.
I know I’m not alone here (shout-out to all you other busy folks out there who don’t want to compromise their beautiful skin), so try these time-saving tips which let you hit the snooze button one more time without sacrificing your skin’s health.
Use Tinted Moisturizer
All the tips on this list can help but this is my #1 time-saver: tinted moisturizer. These magical multi-taskers hydrate your skin while also applying a natural-looking tint to your skin. It’s just enough color to even out your skin tone. In fact, on “good skin days,” my tinted moisturized lets me skip my foundation altogether but on days when my skin is blotchier, it gives my foundation better coverage.
Pro tip: choose a tinted moisturizer that has SPF too. Then you’re combining three steps of your morning routine into one.
Exfoliate and Cleanse in One Step
Both cleansing and exfoliating are important aspects of your skincare routine, but they each take time. To cut that time in half, choose an exfoliating cleanser instead.
There’s an important caveat, though: don’t use it every day. You should only exfoliate two to three times per week because overdoing it will break down your skin’s protective barrier, leading to dryness and irritation. Use the exfoliating cleanser as your cleanser a few times per week, swapping it out for a non-exfoliating cleanser on other days.
Prevent Instead of Repairing
A lot of skincare as well as makeup is based around fixing or covering up issues. Instead of constantly trying to chase down your latest skin malady, take a preventative approach to lighten your routine and save time.
For example, take the 30 seconds at night to apply an eye cream that prevents or reduces dark circles under your eyes. That saves you the several minutes in the morning of trying to cover your dark circles with concealer in an even, natural-looking way. Likewise, use a moisturizer with SPF to prevent age spots. It takes no extra time at all but it saves you the time of covering your age spots every day.
Have a To-Go Stash
During the winter months especially, you might use a light moisturizer in the morning but your skin dries out throughout the day. By bedtime, your skin is so dry that it’s soaking up all your moisturizer and you might need multiple layers or several types of hydrating products before your fact stops feeling like the Sahara.
For an alternative, stash a hydrating facial spray in your bag and have a spritz whenever you feel the urge. Your skin stays hydrated so when it’s time for your nightly skincare routine, you just need one quick layer of moisturizer.
Know Your Internal Clock
As much as my midwestern roots have tried to fight it, I’m not an early riser. I’m a night owl through and through. This means that when I have a long morning skincare routine, not only is it more annoying but it takes longer because my tired brain isn’t exactly moving at warp speed.
If you have the same struggle, find ways to simplify your morning routine and do more of your skincare at night instead. For example, I’ve learned that if I add a hydrating serum at night in addition to my nighttime moisturizer, my skin isn’t as dry in the morning so that tinted moisturizer is all I need to feel hydrated throughout the day.
Take a Gentle Approach
Despite our best intentions, sometimes we accidentally work against ourselves and waste our own time. For instance, a common mistake is to use an overly harsh cleanser which yes, cleans your skin, but it strips the moisture out in the process. Then you have to spend more time with moisturizers to put back the hydration you removed by accident.
Over-exfoliating is similar: you spend your valuable type exfoliating but you go do it too often and it leads to redness and irritation. Then you have to spend even more time (and money) adding redness control products to your routine.
If you’re guilty of one of these offenses (don’t worry, I am too), give your skin a break. Opt for gentler cleansers and cut back to exfoliating around twice per week.
Getting Great Skin with a Busy Schedule
Life is chaotic sometimes (or for years at a time). Whether you’re racing around because of your job, your family, or your other daily responsibilities, you don’t have to give up your healthy skin for that go-go lifestyle. Use the tips above for a quicker routine.