I, like you, juggle day-to-day chaos with grace and ease, effortlessly sauntering about, looking beautiful and feeling the same.
If you actually are a mother, you’ll realize that the previous statement is completely and utterly false.
I, like you, have a hard time cramming everything I want (and need) to do in one day. I, like you, have chipped nails, neglected toes, wayward hairs, and patches of dry skin. But I’m finding a way out of it.
I’d like to present you a few items that are helping me through.
It’s a 10 Miracle Leave-In Product
I was introduced to It’s a 10 by my loyal and ever-helpful hair stylist. According to the bottle, the product does ten things. And it probably does. Am I able to rattle off what those ten things are? Of course not, because I’m a…ready? I’m a busy mom. But what I can say is that it leaves my hair soft and manageable, guards against split ends and heat styling, and tames flyaways, ahem, on the fly. It’s also a Godsend for my daughter, who is of the curlier persuasion. I use the It’s a 10 plus Keratin. You can apply it to either damp, clean hair or hair that’s dry, and them comb through. It doesn’t get much more simple than that. Best yet, you can find It’s a 10 practically anywhere, from CVS to Target to your local SuperCuts. Try it. It’s a 10 retails for about $15.
Anyone with kids (pets, dishes, plants, hands) understands it’s not always easy to treat yourself to an at-home manicure. The minutes tick away in anticipation of a small person asking you to open a package, remove an item that’s wedged inside another item, or wipe someone’s something. A good manicure requires time. Time. Well, seems I’ve found time in a bottle. INM Out the Door Fast Drying Topcoat is a product I wish I’d found long, long ago. You can go from wet to set in minutes, and not taffy-consistency dry. I mean, dry dry. Go on with your day like nothing ever happened dry. And that’s priceless for someone who doesn’t have the luxury of time to wait for two-plus coats to set. Orly, OPI, and Sally Hansen also make fast-dry products. Fast dry topcoat will truly change your beauty life. You can find INM Out the Door Topcoat at Sally Beauty Supply for around $5.49.
I know. You’ve heard this a zillion times. Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. Well, moisturize already! And how ’bout this? I don’t care what brand you use, whether it’s fragranced or fancy, cheap or expensive, or made for babies’ bottoms. Just use it. Think of all the times in a day your hands are submerged in a sink, or being assaulted by antibacterial gel or foam, or scrubbing the floor with Clorox wipes (maybe that’s just me). I’m not going to show you my hands right now, though I should. I have not used moisturizer today. There’s nothing that gives you that New Mom Smell (albeit temporarily), or makes you feel as great about body as slathering a truckload of moisturizer all over. Sure, it’s an investment of a few moments, but the rewards last about twenty-four hours. Again, just use it.
Anyone who knows me knows I have a cabinet ludicrously full of Yankee Candles. Why? Because the scents make us feel good. They transform us, transport us. They make us happy. Lighting a candle at the end of a day, or over a luxuriously hot bath simply screams Me Time. My favorite scent right now is Meyer Lemon. Do with that what you will, but there’s something about scented candles that make you feel human again, instead of a taxi-driving maid and laundress. Check out Yankee Candle here, or find other brands at your favorite retailer or mall shop.
I catch a lot of flack for cleaning my jewelry – my wedding ring, engagement band, watch, and sometimes earrings – pretty frequently. People do not understand why I bother. At first, I cleaned my rings because I was getting formula powder stuck between the prongs, or I made contact with a bowl of spaghetti. But now? Sheer vanity. I enjoy shiny things. And so should you. It is truly a mood lifter to look down at your hand and see your beloved jewels twinkling back at you. My favorite is Conoisseurs, and it will set you back about five bucks. You can find it at most major retailers, drugstores, and online.
I will go so far as to say any lip gloss on this one. From the impromptu runs to the store for poster board, or the “right” tortillas, to the pickup line at school and ballet class, lip gloss tells the world, “I finished getting ready today.” At least I think it does… My ultimate favorite brand is Laura Geller. It has a healthy, glossy shine, it’s thick without being gloppy, the shades are extremely versatile, and it wears all day. Other favorites include Burt’s Bees and Clinique. Prices range from about $4 up to $19.
Along with the theme of looking “finished”, nothing says ‘I thought about this outfit’ better than sunglasses. Me? I have one pair of really great quality designer sunglasses. I also have a few pair of not-so-designer sunglasses. From eye bags to finishing off a well-composed look, they help. Trust me. And if anyone’s feeling charitable, I’d more than happily take a pair of these.
Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure
I know. I talk about nails so damned much. But here’s the thing. If you’re like me, you enjoy manicures that last more than twelve hours. And there are a few brands on the market right now, whose names I dare not speak, that don’t quite live up to those standards. The Sally Hansen Complete Salon manicure can do up to seven days easily. It’s basecoat, polish, and topcoat all in one, and it’s reliable. If you’re doing your nails at home, I’d highly recommend you get some. Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure can be found at all retail drug chains, other discount stores, and online for between $6 and $8 a bottle.
Freeman Bare Foot Foot Scrub
This is a product I’ve been using for many years. It’s inexpensive, can be found most anywhere, and lasts so long. It’s best when summer creeps in and rears its dehydrated, scaly head. Want to rock sandals? No problem! This stuff sloughs off the unsightlies right in the shower. Plus, its smells great. Freeman Bare Foot Foot Scrub can be found at at all retail drug chains, other discount stores, and online for between $3 and $4 a tube.
I hope my picks help you streamline in this fast-paced world where it’s so hard to get (and stay!) pretty.