Long before my husband, kids, pets, or adulthood, I had one true love and obsession: beauty products. Even before I reached the age of 13, I would request fashion magazines and beauty products as “treats” from the store instead of candy or clothes. I’m not sure of the attraction since my mother rarely did and even now rarely wears any makeup. My fun hobby of collecting products later turned into doing makeup for sorority sisters before date parties or formals and later as a side hustle of doing wedding makeup.
My beauty product obsession took the backseat to Gray Baby when she was born, but I do still enjoy doing other people’s makeup and giving recommendations to friends and families. You might not find me wearing a full-face of makeup every single day, or even washing my face every night before bed (oops), but I do love sharing my love with others.
Here are five beauty hacks for any mom who is interested in stepping up their beauty game without breaking the bank or spending a lot of time getting ready:
Dry shampoo is your friend.
Dry shampoo can save you on the days you don’t have the time or patience to wash your hair, freshen up your style when it needs a bit more oomph, and prepare freshly washed hair for styling that is better done on unwashed hair. I’ve tried a ton of dry shampoos but always go back to two: Batiste Dry Shampoo is a great drugstore buy that totals under $10 and comes in a variety of shades and scents. This is a great choice for women who don’t have blonde hair and have had problems with dry shampoos leaving a white cast in their hair. I’ve used the brunette and red colors before and both blended perfectly. Two years ago my best friend recommended Bumble and Bumble Prêt-à-Powder and I bit the price tag bullet at $27 and bought it after trying hers. Oh my word. This stuff has changed my life. Seriously. One bottle has lasted me for two years and is still going. Every time I use it on my dirty hair I get compliments on how great my hair looks. The white powder never leaves a white cast either. I know the price seems a ton for dry shampoo, but I did the math and I was going through one bottle of Batiste a month, which was putting me at $25 in just five months. Now I don’t feel too bad about the Bumble and Bumble. However, there are tons of great dry shampoo choices at every cost. Not to mention, CVS, Ulta, and Sephora all give refunds or exchanges if you aren’t in love with a product!
Look for products that multitask.
Products that have more than one purpose save you time and money — two things that I need more of as a mom. I love coconut oil. I’m sure everyone knows about how fabulous coconut oil is, but I’m still going to preach about its uses. I use coconut oil as makeup remover since it can remove EVERYTHING including waterproof makeup, body moisturizer for myself and for Gray Baby, lip balm when I can’t find any of my 1765 tubes of lip balm, and hair mask when my ends are feeling too dry. I also tend to use makeup products outside of their traditional use. Champagne eye shadow makes a great cheek highlight. A face contour and highlight palette has every shade you need for a neutral eye look. Lipstick can be dotted and blended on the cheeks for blush. Brow pomade can be used as eyeliner. A cleaned-off mascara wand can groom your brows. The possibilities are endless.
You don’t have to follow the trends.
Don’t let Glamour or Ella Claire make you feel as though you are out of the loop if you aren’t sporting the season’s latest beauty trend. I’m definitely not wearing gold sequined eye jewels or green lipstick to work or while changing a dirty diaper. It’s okay to be a mascara and lip balm girl, full-face of makeup girl, or even the girl who has no desire to wear anything. Trends come and go; your personal style is timeless.
You can find good products that are inexpensive.
People will often advise to splurge on foundation, skincare, shampoo, etc. Did you know that most beauty brands are owned by the same mother companies? Proctor & Gamble and L’Oreal own a majority of the brands you see at the drugstore or even at high-end stores. This means that many products are identical or nearly identical in formula even when they are from different brands. Just because one’s price tag is higher than the other doesn’t mean it’s necessarily better. A quick Google search can give you product reviews when you are wondering how a product performs, or like I mentioned earlier, shopping at a store like CVS, Ulta, or Sephora means you can return products if you don’t love them.
Good product hygiene trumps all.
Let’s do a quick mental inventory of your beauty products. How long have you owned and used your products? When is the last time you washed your makeup brushes? Most products have a container symbol with a number on the back, which signifies how many months a product is considered safe to use. Huffington Post’s The Makeup Expiration Dates You Need to Know article shares a good timeline of how long products should be used before tossing due to bacteria growth. Makeup brushes are often ignored when it comes to cleaning. No need to buy fancy brush shampoo or anything. Baby shampoo and warm water on a washcloth works just as well. Lauren Conrad has an easy step-by-step tutorial on how to get those brushes clean.