Beautiful Change Challenge: BEAUTY

I’m so excited to be working with Aveeno once again — they’re launching a Beautiful Change Challenge, and once I saw the topics, I jumped right in. The great thing about projects like this is that it’s not about hyping or reviewing a product…it’s about starting conversation.


(Full disclosure will come at the bottom of this post, but per my policy: I have been compensated for this post and all opinions are mine.)

For the Challenge, I’ve been tasked with revamping and renewing my beauty routines. And round 1 is all about morning primping.

6 months ago, my routine was much different. I’d linger over coffee, do intricate make-up and hair, actually iron (ha!) my clothes, answer a few emails before starting my commute, etc.

Makeup Montage 2

These days, I’ve added a baby into the mix, including nursing, diaper and clothing changes, packing her bags, etc. It’s a lot. And I try to get out the door as early as possible so that I can leave work as early as possible in the afternoon.


A general schedule for me now:

  • 6 a.m. alarm goes off and I spend a few minutes rubbing my eyes, checking email, turning on the TV and watching the headlines
  • 6:15 a.m. I actually get out of bed and brush my teeth, jump in the shower, etc.
  • 6:30 a.m. get dressed, hair and makeup
  • 6:55 a.m. start to wake the husband and baby
  • 7:00 a.m. nursing in bed while watching Today (husband brings me coffee, that angel)
  • 7:25 a.m. downstairs to pack bags (my lunch, her bottles, pumping bag, laptop bag)
  • 7:45 a.m. in the car and headed to daycare
  • 8:00 a.m. back in the car and headed to work (I usually slam down a granola bar or protein shake)
  • 8:15-8:25 a.m. arrive at work

It’s kind of a rush. I used to wake up earlier when I was in hardcore run training, but while breastfeeding, that’s just not feasible (or comfortable). There’s also not a lot I can cut out. I already do a lot of prep work at night: cleaning bottles, prepping bottles for the next day, etc.


So, for the Challenge, I decided to see if I could do my hair and makeup in 15 minutes or less. I started with the makeup, setting a goal for a 5-minute “look.”

Luckily for me, we’re a pretty business casual office, so I can roll in with wet hair or minimal make-up if I want, but I like to try and get as dressed up as possible.

I hope you’ll watch the video (it’s short!) but if not: I didn’t make it. I almost doubled my goal time for makeup alone. So, a few thoughts:

  1. I need to try and shower at night. My hair is very thick (and falls out, thanks to hormones) so it’s easier if I just wash it and let it air dry, and then I just have to run a flat iron through it or do a creative braid. That will save me a TON of time. While I didn’t shoot video, I did set a clock on my morning hair routine: drying, flat ironing or curling and doing a final “style” took almost 20 minutes. Crazy.
  2. I won’t ever walk out of the house with no makeup — it’s just not me — but I can definitely do a more natural, neutral look most days and then I won’t have to spend so long blending. I think I could get down to primer, foundation, basic eye makeup and blush and come closer to 5 minutes.
  3. Five minutes may not always reasonable for me on makeup, but if I am doing a less-basic look, I need to keep my hairstyle a little simpler.
  4. I can probably save a few minutes by picking out my clothes the night before — I do that for the baby but I have gotten out of the habit of doing it for myself.

I thought this was actually a pretty good challenge. I have a moment every day in the daycare driveaway after dropping Audrey off where I just have a heavy sigh…I often feel that by 8 a.m., I’ve already done a day’s worth of work (and yet, there are so many hours still ahead!). So while I didn’t find a lot of extra time, it’s kind of like running — shaving even a few seconds off every mile counts toward a faster finish.

Now to the fine print:

Now, it’s actually healthy to wash your hair every day. AVEENO® PURE RENEWAL lets you renew your hair to its naturally balanced state daily. Unlike ordinary shampoos, these sulphate-free formulas have Balancing Seaweed Extract; bringing hair back to its naturally healthy, most balanced state with each wash, for beautifully healthy-looking hair.

Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Aveeno via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Aveeno.

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  1. says

    I can definitely do makeup in 5 min, just not hair too. I see you’re sporting the Garnier BB Cream. LOVE, love that stuff. Use it everyday.
    I recently started showering at night and then not showering in the morning. Saves so much time. I used to shower at night (after my workout) and shower again in the morning. But I’m much too lazy for that now. Also, if i put my hair in some sort of bun or braid at night, I usually don’t have to style it in the morning either. It gets wavy at night and I just brush it.

    • says

      I need to start braiding my wet hair…I love the waves that it creates. But when I do that, my hair is often still wet when I wake up. Thick hair problems.

  2. says

    20 minutes for hair and makeup would be tough for me. I’ve finally mastered a 5 minute face, but I have long, thick, hair that takes a while to blow dry and style. On a good day, I can style my hair in 20 minutes, but they’re not all good days. If I don’t need to wash my hair in the morning, I can finish hair and makeup in 10 minutes. I really like those days.

  3. Kim says

    Katy, I love this – it’s fascinating to watch real people do everyday makeup since it’s not part of my morning. I work at home now, but when I had a corporate job for 4 years I routinely showed up with wet hair (to stay cool from riding a bike in Orlando) and only mascara (to avoid zombie eyes). Despite growing up with 3 sisters, I never really “learned how to do makeup” and now that I’m having a daughter, it’s something I’d like to learn to pass on to her. Heck, I’m 28 and still don’t know how to use a curling iron. I only put on makeup these days when there is a formal event with a paid photographer (weddings, award ceremonies) and I’m so bad at it that I actually go to someone else and pay them to do it for me. How did you learn what brushes to use, what order to apply makeup in, how to blend colors, etc.? Any tips on how to get started for beginners? Cool music!

    • says

      I would love to do a post on what I use and what my sources are…as long as people would promise not to laugh. Because I’m a slave to other people’s tutorials and never actually come up with anything on my own :)

      I love YouTube. Seriously, there are how-tos for everything from braiding to curling your hair and every single type of makeup that exists. If you do nothing else, start there, and I’ll put together some links!

  4. says

    I can’t watch the video at work (boo!), but I can tell that you switching to a BB cream has helped me cut my makeup time down considerably! I think I can actually do my makeup in LESS than 5 minutes now (my hair is a completely different beast – unless I’m going curly). I actually use the Aveeno BB cream (I’m currently trying out the Stila cream too – but I kinda like the Aveeno better!) with BareMinerals Radiance powder, BareMinerals bronzer, Urban Decay eye shadow, eyeliner (various kinds), and Ulta blush. I switched to this routine about a month ago and I swear my skin looks SO much healthier. If I straighten my hair – I mostly wash it every other day. Day 2 hair always looks better than Day 1 hair!

    • says

      I think I get caught up with two parts: filling in my eyebrows and blending everything…if I’d just wear LESS eyeshadow, I wouldn’t have to worry so much but I just get so excited about dramatic eyes :) I need a new blush, so I’ll check out that brand.

  5. says

    i have gotten to the point where i can get the kid and i out the door in under an hour. i do A LOT the night before.

    first- i only wash my hair every other day. it’s better for it anyway. i dry shampoo on the off days. when i do wash my hair, i get done with work a little early and run home to do it before i pick the kid up from day care so i’m not trying to multitask. i also let my hair air-dry. i hate sleeping on wet hair. so the afternoon is ideal.
    second- i prep a lot of stuff both the night before and before i get the kid up. my outfit is laid out and waiting for me in the bathroom. my pump is in place and ready to go (with one set up ready for right after i nurse and the other in the bag already to run out the door with). i often have the kid’s outfit all ready to go on the changing table. i nuke a special k breakfast sandwich and my nursing tea and set it out with my prenatals to scarf as soon as i’m done nursing. while the tea is heating up, i feed the dog and let her out.
    NOW- i grab the kid out of her crib. on the way back to our nursing spot, i squirt her vitamins into her mouth and switch out the tea for the breakfast sandwich into the microwave. we nurse (i try to catch up on emails and such on my cell phone).
    the kid gets plopped into her jumperoo so i can pump and scarf my “breakfast.” i bag up the milk, grab my cooler and put that day’s milk supply into it and load up all my stuff into the car. then i grab the kid, get her changed and dressed, strap her in the car seat and we’re out the door. that was, on a really good day, about 40 minutes.
    did you notice something missing? oh yeah, make up. that’s cause i don’t do it. but a lot of the reason i don’t do daily make-up is because of how sensitive my skin is and prone to break outs (like yours, right? i’d love to hear if you’ve found make-up that is actually working for you as far as the break out situation goes).
    the big key to me getting out the door so quickly is that i am a little ocd and big on multitasking. it took me months to figure out this routine, but i have a system and if everything plays out the way it should i don’t feel like i’ve “wasted” a single minute.
    sometimes my husband tries to “help” but it usually just throws a wrench into the routine and gets me aggravated and i start feeling like Nick Burns, your company’s computer guy “MOVE, MOVE, you don’t know what you’re doing!”

  6. says

    Love the video. You did great and look so pretty!

    I think I would make more of an effort with my makeup if it stayed put. Whenever I do a full face in the morning, I always look melted by noon.

    • says

      I’m still trying to figure out what I can do to make my eyeshadow not get all crease-y when my eyes water (I yawn a lot these days). I use primer and good makeup, but I still get weird spotty marks.

  7. says

    First of all, you are gorgeous even without makeup! :) But I understand not wanting to leave the house sans makeup…for me that means I’m sure to run into everybody I know! 😉
    I have been able to get my whole makeup & hair routine down to 20-25 minutes, but I always make sure to shower at night & only wash my hair every other night. It really helps with my hair doing what I want it to do.

    • says

      Gosh, you are good for my ego! I don’t wear makeup for others — I wear it because it makes me feel more confident and I love playing with it. I think a lot of people do it because they’re afraid to be seen without it, and that’s not me (hello, every race I’ve ever done!). But yeah, I definitely do feel like the one time I go to Target without at least foundation and mascara, I’ll be greeted with every client I’ve ever worked with :)

  8. says

    We use a lot of the same products! Bare Minerals, Naked pallete, and I think our mascaras are the same! It is tough to fit time in the mornings, and while having my hair & face done isn’t required for my job, I work in Human Resources so I feel like I should be presentable. I was overly concerned about how I would get ready in the morning once I returned to work that I actually bought a second set of my makeup to keep at my desk. I’m always to work before my start time, so in the event that I didn’t get to my face at home I can do a quick application before my work day actually starts!

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