When I worked at an office, I seriously struggled with getting myself and an infant changed, dressed, fed and packed up in time to rush over to day care and up to work. And now that I'm a work-from-home mom, I can honestly say that while the "rushing" isn't so much an issue, basic grooming still is. When there's a child to get ready, a house to keep clean and looming deadlines in the back of my mind, things like "curling my eyelashes" and "showering" are shoved to the bottom of the to-do list.
But every woman wants to feel pretty, mom or not.
I'm not the mom with a perfect blow-out and full face of makeup -- not by a long shot -- but I'm all about time-saving quick fixes. Luckily I worked in a magazine's beauty closet before getting pregnant, so I was able to test and hoard my favorite finds. Here are my 8 favorite beauty products for busy moms:
1. Lulu's Organics Hair Powder
This organic, talc-free hair powder should be in every new mom's vanity for those shower-less days when your hair needs some freshening. It's a little pricey at $30, but it will seriously last for years. (I've had mine since 2007 with no end in sight.) Plus, most other dry shampoos and powders are chock-full of chemicals, while Lulu's is a safer, more natural option.
2. Tinted Moisturizer
I've tested a lot of tinted moisturizers, and this oil-free Kiss My Face tinted moisturizer is by far my favorite. Lightweight and quick to apply, it still has smooth coverage for a polished finish. Highly recommend. (I get mine from Elizabeth Boutique, but those out of the area can look for a local store.)
3. Cargo Multi-Mix Bronzer
I much prefer this liquid bronzer from Cargo for a number of reasons: 1) no makeup brush to wash out; 2) one-handed application; 3) sheer, multi-flattering color; and 4) you can even mix it in with your tinted moisturizer for a darker coverage. You can find it at your local Sephora or just shop on Amazon.
4. Ouidad Botanical Boost
This is one of my very favorite beauty products ever -- the only product that's been able to give my thick, wavy hair a "wash-and-go" softness. And unlike other sprays, it doesn't leave my hair feeling heavy, gritty or stiff. This Botanical Boost is full of botanicals, anti-oxidants and conditioning aloe to give your hair a healthy, moisturized, frizz-free look. Love, love, love.
5. Paul Mitchell Super Skinny Relaxing Balm
Not only is it a smoothing balm, but it helps your hair dry way faster -- a must for thick-haired women like myself.
6. Supergoop! Sunscreen Wipes
Sunscreen wipes are one of my favorite summer must-haves for a toddler, but these SPF 30+ sunscreen wipes are designed for the whole family (free of phthalates, parabens, sulfates, petrochemicals, GMOs, triclosan, and synthetic fragrances and dyes). And if there's one beauty product you don't want to forget to put on (but probably will), it's sunscreen. And the convenience of swiping on sunscreen wipes is nothing short of genius. More than that, I especially love knowing they're safe for my toddler, considering all of the sunscreen debates.
7. Multi-tasking Mascara
My pick for the best mascara is Benefit's BADgal Lash Macara, which provides some lift and curl (without a scary lash curler contraption) and serious volume. Instant pick-me-up without time-consuming eye liner.
8. Benefit Eye Bright
This pinkish-color eyeliner instantly brightens your eyes when lightly lined around the inner corners of your eyes. (Only a little, otherwise you'll need some roll-on sparkles to complete your look.)
Did your beauty routine change after having a baby?