Easy 5-minute makeup routine

Get out the door fast with our pared-down routine of just the makeup essentials

Easy 5-minute makeup routine

Source: Best Health Magazine, October 2009

You wake up a bit later than intended, and because you’ve had to hit the ground running, you end up changing your outfit three times. That leaves five minutes to put on your make­up. What’s the best way to make that work? We asked David Goveia, one of Canada’s premier makeup artists, for help.

Toronto-based Goveia has worked with a galaxy of celebrities, from film stars Cameron Diaz and Keira Knightley to supermodels Daria Werbowy and Shalom Harlow. But he’s also often called upon for photo shoots of ‘real’ women. ‘I like to use products that deliver the biggest punch for the least amount of effort,’ says Goveia. ‘You should not have to spend more than five minutes on your makeup each morning.’

He suggests this routine, with a bonus: extra tips for those days when you have an extra minute (when you haven’t pressed the snooze button one too many times).

Skin prep: 2 minutes

Start with a clean moisturized face. Then you have a couple of choices:

Option A: Primer
For some women, depending on the coverage needed, wearing a primer can lessen (or even eliminate) the need for concealer and foundation, according to Goveia. ‘That saves you minutes right there,’ he says.

These skin smoothers, which come as translucent lotions or in creamier white formulas, are used as a base for all makeup and go on after your moisturizer. They aren’t typically cited as an essential, but Goveia really likes them. ‘Everyone can benefit from one. They contain a little silicone and keep everything nice and smooth, preventing make­­up from disappearing.’

You apply primer as you would moisturizer: Using fingertips, completely cover the face.

Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer, $44, 30 mL
Quo Re-Texture Cream Face Primer, $25, 34 g

Option B: Foundation and/or concealer
If you wear foundation, you can cut down on your makeup time by applying it ‘only to areas that need it,’ emphasizes Goveia.

Concealers come in stick, wand, tube or pot versions, and are typically used to camouflage under-eye circles and blemishes. Some women use foundation as their concealer’it’s really a matter of personal choice and, depending on your skincare needs, these products can be interchangeable, although concealers tend to be thicker. Stipple or dot on areas such as red eyelids or around the nose, and blend with your
fingers or a slightly damp makeup sponge. Use a very thin concealer brush to dot concealer onto blemishes.

When you have an extra 30 seconds: You can finish with powder to blend in the concealer and foundation, and to control shine. But in Goveia’s opinion, powder is ‘the one item you should use the least. Too much powder is aging.’

Lise Watier Mineral Brush Foundation, $35, 35 mL
L’Oréal True Match Super-Blendable Makeup, $15, 30 mL
Lancôme Effacernes Waterproof Protective Undereye Concealer, $30, 14 g
‘ Joe Fresh Beauty Duo Concealer, $8 for 4.5 mL cream and 1.4 g cover stick
Bobbi Brown Creamy Concealer, $30, 1.7 g
Clinique Blended Face Powder, $24, 36 g

Eyelids: 1 minute

‘Apply eye pencil’the waxier the better’to the outer corner of the eye only, and do an ‘up-tick’ at the outer corner,’ says Goveia. He recommends black pencil for light to medium complexions, and purple eye pencil on dark skin.

When you have an extra 30 seconds: Goveia considers a shimmery white eyeshadow a secret weapon for ‘brightening up the eye area.’ Apply to the inner corner of the eye, then dot on centre of eyelid and under eyebrow arch.

When you have an extra one to two minutes: For more eye definition, extend the liner all along the lash line and smudge it lightly. Play up your eyes even more with classic, neutral shadows for smoky eye shading. And if you make a mistake, try a nifty eye make­up eraser.

Maybelline New York Expertwear Eye Shadow in Vanilla Shimmer, $5, 2.6 g
Rimmel London Soft Kohl Kajal Eye Liner Pencil in Purple Passion, $6
Sephora Keep Kohl! Waterproof Liner In Keep Black, $10
Marcelle Wet and Dry Eyeshadow Quad in Nude Attitude, $14
Revlon Makeup Eraser Pen, $10

Eyelashes: 1 minute

Eyelash curler
Goveia considers curling your eyelashes essential, one of the ways to get the biggest ‘punch’ in a pared-down makeup routine. ‘It gives the eyes a more open look and can help to make lashes look longer,’ he says. Hold the eyelash curler for five seconds on each eye, then apply mascara.

Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler, $23
Revlon Lash Curler, $6

‘A very black mascara is a must-have for a range of complexions, while dark-skinned women look great in a colour mascara,’ says Goveia. ‘Apply one light stroke on the inner lashes but extra strokes on outer lashes.’

Clarins Wonder Perfect Mascara in Wonder Black (also available in Wonder Plum and Wonder Blue), $27
Rimmel London Sexy Curves Water­proof Mascara in Black, $8

Cheeks: 30 seconds

This is a must for a fresh, healthy look, and an instant remedy whenever you’re looking tired. Using a blush brush, smile and apply powder blush to the apples of the cheeks, keeping most of the product on the high part of the cheekbones. Blend up toward hairline, then down, swirling the brush to blend.

For olive to dark skin tones, try:
M.A.C Sheertone Shimmer Blush in Trace Gold (a light gold with shimmer), $21, 6 g

For fair skin, try:
Cargo PlantLove 100% Natural Origin Blush in Tulip, $28, 9 g
CoverGirl TruBlends Micro­Min­erals Blush in Nat­ural Rose, $14, 8 g

Lips: 15 seconds

Finish with a gloss or a sheer lipstick. They’re quicker to apply than a dark lipstick, which requires more precision, and ‘women look younger with a little shine on their lips,’ says Goveia.

When you have an extra 30 seconds: If you want to pump up your lip volume, apply neutral lip pencil to the bow of the lips and to the centre of bottom lip only, before or after you apply colour.

For lip pencil, try: Smashbox The Nude Lip Pencil, $19.
For neutral lips, try: Cargo Lip Gloss Quad in South Beach, $25 for four mixable shades
For red lips, try: Giorgio Armani Shine Lipstick in Shade 8 (a sheer cherry red), $34
For glossy colour, try: Joe Fresh Beauty Lip Gloss in Bordeaux, $8

Play up one feature

Goveia subscribes to the often-cited rule to emphasize eyes or lips, but not both. ‘And never play up cheeks at all. They shouldn’t be the one statement.’

Don’t forget the eyebrows

‘Eyebrows are important’they frame your face,’ says Goveia. A little cleanup under the arch is all you really need. ‘The thinner the brow, the older you look, so grooming should be minimal.’ If brows are too sparse, fill in with Maybelline Define-A-Brow Eyebrow Pencil in Dark Blonde ($9), or, for darker brows, Anastasia Brow Powder Duo Medium Ash (taupe-based browns, $29).