As Cosmo UK's online Beauty Editor I'm lucky enough to pick up the best tricks of the trade, which is handy when I'm faced with early starts, non-stop meetings and hourly deadlines. Here are some ways I balance beauty rituals around my busy schedules so I look fresh faced, bright-eyed and ready for anything (even when I don't feel it!).
6am Wakeup Call – If I've had a particularly late night I steal Kate Moss's ice trick which works a treat. The Super-party veteran submerges her skin in ice and cucumber water to tighten the pores and reduce puffiness. Try it! Next up I employ my skincare. After cleansing I layer on serum and moisturiser, really massaging them in to help tone my facial muscles and encourage blood flow which grants a natural glow. Next I use the Clinique's new Pep-Start™ Eye Cream which de-puffs tired eyes with its spherical massage applicator, delivering the soothing and energising formula to work on any dark circles. Among the many plumping ingredients are 7 peptides which helps fight the tell-tale signs of a busy life.
7am Yoga Class – I do yoga for its multiple amazing benefits. As well as boosting my general health (and reducing stress levels!), it's good for improving posture and getting radiant skin. In the morning I like to do detoxifying twists, backbends to strengthen and tone the neck muscles and inversions to get my 'glow' going. By reversing gravity in poses like headstands and shoulderstands you help flush oxygen and fresh nutrients to the face.
8am Speedy Makeup – While I'm a big fan of makeup, I also think it's nice to let your real skin radiate through. Now a style choice in its own right for us girls 'no makeup makeup' is a great go-to look for work that can be dressed up easily throughout the day and into night. After applying a BB cream and concealer (where needed) I like to use highlighter for a subtle strobing effect that catches the light and looks more modern that full-on contouring. I apply it to the higher parts of the bone structure and blend it in. This, plus a pop of blush and mascara, takes no time at all.
9am Breakfast – A healthy brekkie can contribute to maintaining a fresh-faced look so I opt for superfoods like eggs and avocado or I make my own berry bircher muesli. I try to swap my (dehydrating) coffee order for a hydrating and antioxidant-rich green juice or smoothie.
10am Desk Time – When writing news stories, I need to work quickly but I try to stay relaxed by taking 20-second breaks to do neck rolls and shoulder shrugs. To avoid eyestrain (which not only feels uncomfortable but can contribute to tired-looking eyes), I always enlarge my text.
Midday Press Launch – Previews of beauty products set to launch are an informative and fun part of my day. At these group presentations there are lots of other beauty editors and PRs present so I try to look presentable! My top trick is to spritz my face first with a hydrating skin spray I keep in my bag which gives my makeup a dewy finish again – it's much quicker than reapplying it!
1pm Al Desko Lunch – Often I have no choice but to eat at the office, but I always try and pop out for fresh air. I usually pick up something like a low-GI salad with veggies, protein and wholegrains in it to avoid blood sugar spikes in the afternoon. Usually to follow is a juice and some dark chocolate which is high in skin-loving flavonoids which are thought to suppress the appetite so I don't crave cake come 3pm (I love this finding!). Not that I hate cake – far from it – BUT refined sugar is notoriously ageing, so I don't want it to become a daily habit.
2pm Celebrity Interview – Interviewing industry experts and celebrities is another exciting aspect of my job and often they're filmed which is another reason to stay looking fresh! If I need to conceal any blemishes I use a creamy concealer and for dark shadows I first apply a tiny bit of eye cream which smoothes the way for makeup and prevents it from sitting in fine lines or creases. In my taxi back to work I take the time to practice some stress-relieving rituals such as breathing techniques and pressure points massage.
4pm Desk Time – Back on deadline, I make sure I up my water intake to stay hydrated from the inside out. If I don't my skin and lips can feel dryer. If you struggle to drink two liters (plus!) a day, try a fruit infuser water bottle which makes h2o more exciting, or drinking coconut water. I also keep white and green teabags to hand – both are high in antioxidants which slow down the ageing process.
6pm Press Dinner – At least one night a week I'll have a work event like a dinner with PRs and beauty industry experts. While I want to look like I've made an effort, I never leave myself time to re-do my face – and layering on makeup can leave a cakey finish, so I layer on my skincare instead. To brighten up my complexion and refresh my base I reapply serum from a travel sample I keep in my handbag and apply my Clinique Pep-Start™ to refresh my under-eyes. Another trick I use to brighten my peepers is to add some bright eyeliner or a coloured mascara on top of my existing black makeup. This helps to give a wide-awake look without looking like you've tried too hard!
8pm Cocktails – On a good day, I finish my day by meeting my hubby for a cocktail. Again, I avoid putting on any more heavy makeup other than a pop of lippy which helps to brighten the face and make me feel glam. I like something lively but wearable – like the Clinique Pop in shade Passion Pop. It's amazing how much difference a slick of colour can make!