OK, so you overslept, procrastinated, etc., and now you're running really short on time, and you have to look MORE than presentable. You have to look shiny, pretty, and, most importantly, BE ON POINT. (I write this assuming you are like me: a dog owner who needs caffeine to not turn into Medusa in the morning.)
I really can’t find anything more upbeat and inspiring to play when I first wake up than some reggae. Most of my fondest memories are from the beach, and with the impending doom (read: New York winter) only weeks away, I need to remember what the sun feels like on my belly and hear the swaying of palms in the breeze. I get really SAD in the winter, if you know what I mean; very seasonally affected.
If I'm running late, my mind is trying to think of what I can sacrifice from my usually one-hour-and-20-minute routine from shower to locking the door. If I have motivation and some killer products, I can cut it down to approximately 20 minutes--four times faster! I try to use music, one of my biggest motivators, to light a fire under my ass and get me moving more efficiently.
This has lead me to create the “Don’t Panic!!!!” playlist and to condense my beauty regimen into a quick and efficient power dance session. I hope it helps you get going, too!
Before pressing play, I walk my dog, feed her, and make my coffee rations. Once I have that creamy, warm crack safely in my claws, I head to the bathroom and crank up the volume. My boo is always still asleep all the way on the other side of the apartment when I am leaving. This allows me to be free to sing my heart out and shake around in my undies to get ready to take on the day.
Jimmy Cliff | “The Harder They Come” | 3:37
Look in the mirror, say some kind of cheesy affirmation. Even if it is “don’t blow it” or some '80s rom-com protagonist stuff. Press play and let Jimmy Cliff psych you up to take on the day.
You have 3:37 to floss, brush, and wipe down. The harder the challenges of the day come, the better you will feel when you conquer them. Floss those toofs--I use two floss pics to get the job done fast, and to save my fingers from strangulation. Brush, tongue scrape, and put the water on hot as f@$&. Bust out a washcloth, quickly soak it in the steaming water, and wring it out. I use this to wipe down my face, then armpits, then rinse and wring again and hit the ladybits.
Oh no, the next song! This is where you remember not to PANIC!
Steel Pulse | “Roller Skates” | 4:47
NOW is the important part: making yourself smell good and your face look touched up. Currently, I am rocking a few zit scabs, because I am a face picker and need to be stopped. (Hopefully, posting my mug on the internet on a regular basis will help with that!)
Here, I apply moisturizer, and bop to Steel Pulse, an '80s British Yardie band who I adore. "Life without music" sounds like a death sentence to me as well, so follow along while the singer tells the story of getting back his tunes.
To begin, I always start with the face, leaving my hair in its ugly bun. I put a tiny dab of castor oil on my ring finger, share with the other, and lightly pat into my entire eye area, eyelashes, eyebrows, eyelids, everything. Since I began to do this, I can forgo mascara since my lashes are pretty long and the castor oil adds a natural sheen.
After that, a quarter-sized dab of olive oil gets rubbed into the rest of my face, followed by more for whatever skin will be exposed that day--legs, arms, or both! I need to have greasy limbs to feel attractive.
Then I apply LUSH’s Aromaco deodorant. Mine is shamefully almost gone. Being poor is not an excuse; I still have some juice left on a gift card from Christmas! Next comes LUSH’s Coconut Deodorant Powder swiped over my pits and later in my hair to absorb any greasies.
Last in this segment and before "Roller Skates" is over: I dab on my four different perfumes, each on a different pulse point. I don’t compromise on this, and I do it every day, so honestly it takes mere seconds.
2Chainz | “Feds Watchin” | 4:56
The next song I chose to pick up the pace a bit and to get a few more booty shakes in before the clothes go on. This allows all of my oils time to absorb! I love Pharrell Williams’s beats. They are always so bubbly and fun, and I can never keep my body still. Also, thinking about being surveilled by the federal government makes me want to look extra-good, too.
My daily makeup routine is pretty minimal, but with only two products and a light mist of rosewater, people compliment my "glow" despite the glaring red mark on my forehead. In these cases, I use a tiny bit of Benefit’s FakeUp. I have become quite a Benefit fan for two reasons: simplicity and price. These products last four times longer than most other brands, and only cost two times the price. That, my friends, is a bargain.
I also use the Watt's Up stick, and the BrowZings in Dark. I swipe the Watt's Up around each eye like flipped parentheses )( and then blend gently with my ring fingers. Then I use the wax portion of the brow kit to shape and lightly groom my brows into place. I apply the powder to add definition. I love mine to look bold, dark, and slightly angled.
Once the brows are applied I spritz my face with Heritage Products Rosewater Spray. The light mist sets my makeup, and the rose scent makes my boyfriend chase me around the house in my kimono.
About this time I feel fresh as hell. I curl my lashes and chug my caffeine. Lipstick always comes after I am done with my coffee, in this case, I am using a homemade balm with annatto-infused olive oil for color.
Bunji Garlin | “Differentology” | 4:38
Last but not least, I tackle my hair. If it isn’t clean enough to just rough up with some air, powder, and a bump of the ol' curling wand, I will tease it into a large messy bun on my crown. This song was chosen for it’s hook: "WE READY, WE READY, SAID WE READY, WE READY!" It reminds me to finish up quick!
I like my hair to look a bit messy in a bun. Tease the hair in four chunks on your head, front, sides, and back, gather into a pony where you want it to rest, and put a small rubber band on it to make a base. For cushion, you don’t want to make it too tight. Next take a bobby pin or hair pin, twist the pony around the base, and secure.
I hope you all get to get out the door faster with the help of this playlist. I, for one, am always running 15 minutes late to LIFE so I need to start working on that before I hit three decades of age. Share your favorite playlists for getting gussied up in the comments! I am always looking for new music.