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If the idea of anything close to a 11- step Korean skincare regime freaks you the eff out then join the club. It took a long time for me to get into the habit of an intense skincare routine and I still haven’t hit double digit products (is it really necessary?!). So while you’re a skincare and makeup guru in training, take a look at these seven cheap beauty hacks for lazy girls to keep those dilemmas at bay.
1. Dilemma: Weak Nails
I have a huge problem with brittle nails that protective varnishes just cannot cure. It wasn’t until I started living alone again, which inadvertently means having to cook for myself all the time, that I realised peeling garlic actually strengthens your nails. Not an old wives’ tale but a very ‘modern girl who works 9-6 then comes home and makes a dinner for one’ kind of story. Let my loneliness be your enlightenment.
2. Dilemma: Need that dewy, glossy look
This is an old trick that girls who own more than one makeup brush would know about but take it one level up and apply vaseline onto your lids for the kind of killer glossy eyelid that you see in magazines. Word of warning, Vaseline doesn’t have as much holding power on the lids as it does as a quick touch-and-go highlighter on the face. Also, it does clog your pores, but this post is all about the instant result!
3. Dilemma: Short of setting powder
Solution: Baby powder
The glorious uses of baby powder are infinite. Dry shampoo, deodorant (I really have done this before and it works just as well as using a roll-on or spray) and my favourite, setting powder. If you’re into the trend of ‘baking’ one’s face, it can be done with a bit of Johnson and Johnson, especially if you’re all about that matte finish. I discovered this when I bought my favourite Laura Mercier pressed translucent powder and smashed it repeatedly. It was like taking a knife to the heart every. damn. time. So I’ve had to resort to talcum as self-induced punishment.
4. Dilemma: No time to touch up bleached hair
Solution: Christophe Robin’s Shade Variation Care
Oh my goodness, the urge to write about this after the first time I used it was extraordinary. Blame the more pressing items on my checklist for the delay (aka thinking of Instagram captions #firstworldproblems). Travelling almost every month or so for the last four months means that I haven’t had the chance to find a great colourist to tend to my high maintenance Asian locks. I picked up the mask ‘just because’ when I was in Zurich when the brassiness from the bleached ends started to show through. The purple in the mask counteracts the orange monstrosity that was threatening to rear itself, so I thoroughly recommend this product. I use it once a week and at £38 from Space NK, it’s much cheaper than an expensive impulse trip to an unfamiliar salon
5. Dilemma: Makeup that with no staying power
Solution: Spritz Mac Fix + into the product
Yes you’ll have to invest in Prep and Prime Fix + (£17.50) but it is so worth it. I spray it into almost everything liquid in my makeup bag because I just don’t have time to keep touching up my face on a busy day. It keeps my liquid illuminator in place as a strong base for that cheek glow and turns unreliable, smudge-happy liquid liners and runny mascaras into something you don’t regret buying!
6. Dilemma: No eyebrows
Solution: Etude House Tint My Brows Gel
I was casually perusing Youtube, as you do, and I saw Tina Yong smother her beautiful brows in this black lacquer (around £7 on Amazon) only to peel it off and reveal perfectly tinted arches. I thought it was a novelty item but when I was in Topshop on Oxford Circus and saw that they stocked it, I knew it was a sign! The directions for use state that the product should be left on for about two hours but from experience, sleeping with it on overnight gives the best results. I woke up with brows that ACTUALLY EXIST instead of my natural sparse ones and it lasts for around three days.
7. Dilemma: No money for the spa
Solution: Neom’s Real Luxury Intensive Skin Treatment candle
Again, I was casually strolling the internet and where else does one go but to the Bond Street of the web that is Net-A-Porter. I chanced upon the Neom candle (£36) and was like, ‘ooh, I only bought one bottle of wine this week so why not!’ You know the rest. It smells amazing and after 30 minutes the melted ‘wax’ is a fragrant oil that can be applied to the skin for a nourishing treatment. It’s the kind of product that makes you want to schedule two hours of your evening to devote your full attention to how luxurious it makes you feel.
Look 1: Peggy Hartanto jumpsuit| Saint Laurent bag | Staccato shoes
Look 2: Lack of Color hat| Prada dress | Valentino bag | Topshop shoes