Wednesday, October 31, 2012

How to: Speedy Office Makeup

A 30-year old mom and a newbie when it comes to makeup emailed me last month to ask for advice on how to create speedy makeup that doesn't require a lot of time and money! 

Thanks AMW reader "M" for entrusting me your makeup queries.  I have finally gotten the chance to create this post hoping I'm not too late!

Some important notes she mentioned ---
  • She currently uses powder foundation and lip balm.
  • Suffers from severe chapped lips so she's not into lipsticks.  
  • Needs to be in the office as early as 8:00am and needs to be on field and out under the sun.
  • Skin type: Oily.  Skin concern: Dark under eye circles.
  • Requested for simple yet polished look as she gets overwhelmed with all the makeup products she sees on my blog!
Spots, Under eye circles, Blemishes, Acne Marks, etc..
To look presentable, no matter how in a hurry you are, invest on a good concealer!  If your biggest problem is the darkness around the eyes, invest in a salmon colored concealer.  If red acne marks are the villains in your life, go for a green corrector.  It is very important to take a look at your major issues and let's start from there.

Whenever in a hurry, I can skip liquid/cream foundation and just apply concealer quickly on my problem areas.  In my case, it's the dark circles around the eyes and some red spots on the sides of my nose.  If you're on a tight budget, you can pick your current foundation and apply it only on problem areas and leave the rest of your "good skin" to breathe.

Note: Read SAVE vs. SPEND Concealers HERE
You can also check out tips on how to spot conceal HERE

In this photo: AMW used Revlon PhotoReady Concealer in Light Medium

After concealing, I've decided to give powder a skip and proceed in doing my eye makeup.  I tend to have some "fall outs" that may need some cleaning up at the latter part of my makeup application. 

Don't you love how nicely you blend your eye makeup in the morning and upon arriving at work and check your reflection, you see your eyeshadow creasing and some may even fall under the eye area thus your co-worker may bluntly exclaim: "You didn't sleep well last night!"

Since we're in a hurry and eyeshadow blending takes a LOT of time especially for makeup beginners, it is advisable to use cream/gel based shadows.  (Ex. MAC Paint Pot, Bob Brown Long Wear Cream Shadows, etc...).  These types of shadows give a nice color on your lids and can be worn on its own without much creasing or transferring. 

In this photo: AMW used Yves Rocher Couleurs Nature Metal Glow Cream Eyeshadow in Mercure which is not too expensive.  (I will post a review on this product soon!)

No matter how much in a hurry you are, the least you could do is to fill in your brows and define its' shape.  I pick brow pencils when I'm in a hurry then gently brush it with a spoolie.  A well define brows can make a whole difference in your overall look!

Note: Read How to Draw Your Own Brows and How to Lighten Your Brows.

Eye lining (optional)
If you have full lashes and your eyes are your best asset, you can give this step a skip.  As for me, eye-lining is one step I can't miss!  If you are someone who thinks this step is as important as brushing your hair, it is very important to pick your choice of pencil, cream or liquid liners that works for your eyes.  

In my personal experience, I go for gel liners and liquid liners as most pencils tend to smudge especially if I get stressed from work.  

In this photo: AMW used K-Palette 24H Real Lasting Eyeliner in Dark Brown 
Tip: you may also use a super fine liner brush to make the effect more natural.

Dark brown shade is not as harsh as black and this works perfectly for day time office look!  With a quick swipe close to my upper lash line, my eyes looks well define yet still natural-looking.

Tip: Imagine those non-stop yawning which brings tears into your eyes?  Or if you get a scolding from your boss and you can't help but cry.   Try not to apply liner on the waterline or lower lash line for office look to prevent smudging. 

You can skip your eye liner application but never skip on mascara application.  Through the years, I've always been very consistent with making myself look good and natural.  Every time I get into the mood to apply my mascara, I always get compliments on how "blooming" I look!  

If you're in a hurry, you can take your mascara with you during travel and apply it once you arrive at the office!  If your lashes aren't naturally short and straight like mine, you can skip eyelash curling and use mascara that does not only lengthen and volumize but a mascara that can also give your lashes a bit of "lift" and curl. 

AMW used: Fairy Drops Platinum Mascara in Black (review will be up soon)


When you need to be at work by 8:00am, who has the time to blend cream blush or cheek tints?  Even with my comfort level in applying those types of blushes, I like picking powdered blushes and smile and apply a gentle swipe on the apples of my cheeks going outwards.  Trust me, that smile you made for blush application can make you feel good!

Note: Read Tip of the Day for Blush Placement base on your face shape.

In this photo: AMW used Benefit Coralista

Reader M did mentioned her dry slips thus the aversion on using lipsticks.  I hear you!  I like picking up natural colored lip gloss that are non-sticky! 

In this photo: AMW used Royal Effem Nude Colour Lipgloss

Some more tips before I show you my overall look:
  • If you suffer dry skin like I do, you can skip setting powder or powder foundation application.  If you have normal and oily skin, this is the best time to use your favorite kabuki brush and set your makeup with oil-control setting powder concentrating more on areas needed.  
  • Don't forget to toss inside your makeup pouch the following items for retouch: The blush, lipstick/lip gloss you used for the day.  Cotton buds just in case your eyeliner or mascara smears, oil control sheets if you tend to oil up easily and a nice powder foundation just in case.  
  • If you suffer from dry skin and your skin tends to flake up after makeup application, purchase MAC Charged Water or Evian Face Mist if you have the budget or go for Watsons Facial Spray or Celeteque Hydrolized Moisturizing Mist if you're on a budget.  This step will not only make your skin hydrated and plump-looking, it also wakes you up making you more energized!
  • SMILE!  Nothing beats a happy face and a happy mood!  
I can vouch that my Speedy Office Makeup can be done in 5 minutes!  Some of you may take longer but don't fret, the more you practice, the more you'll get used to it and you can even start applying makeup even without looking at the mirror!  *winks*  

This is How I Do It:
Speedy Office Makeup

Mission accomplished!
Can you share to me the major makeup items you use for daily makeup?  
Try to make it less than 10 items!  I would love to read your version of Speedy Office Makeup!

Keep smilin'
Stay happy!


  1. That cream eyeshadow from Yves Rocher looks interesting! And ang cute nung wand ng mascara, hihi....For me, my daily makeup staples are powder foundation, concealer, eyeliner, mascara, powder blush and lipstick! If I am in a hurry, I skip the eye makeup :)

    1. Super nice yung eyeshadow cream, reminded me of the Paul & Joe version! meron din silang ganon!!!

  2. This is a great post! Thanks for sharing. I'm always in a hurry for work. This one is for me to try :D Thanks Ms. Nikki! :)

  3. i am one of those who can't wake up early enough to put on colors on my face ><

    but i do make sure that at least my brows are always trimmed and neat, and i do use powder blush or cha cha tint daily + lipstick so i look like a human!

    1. I know what you mean Xin, I'd rather have the extra sleep that put make up on myself, I'm good at applying makeup fast and quick ! :D

      thanks for sharing your version!

  4. I really can't call it an "office makeup" mainly because my work does not require looking made up. More so, they discourage it.

    A good bb cream + TBS shiso powder+ TBS lip and cheek tint = good to go! And oh, I make sure my face is framed well by using in2it brow powder.

    1. well, true, if your office doesn't require you to put on makeup, well BB Cream is great! I'd go for BB Creams anytime of the day!

  5. Perfect for days that you are on a rush. I am also thinking of getting Urban Decay primer potion in Sin just so I can skip all the eyeshadows haha :)

    1. Nice yung Sin!!! Pero it could get a bit sheer so you have to apply more! Unlike the eyeshadow cream, they are more pigmented and you get the color at first swipe :D

  6. OMG! This is the best way to make fresh make-up! ThanQ very much for the tutorial Nikki!

    1. thanks too Anastacia for your lovely comment! :)

  7. Love it! It's simple and elegant!

    1. Thanks Gio, simple is good, not sure if I call this Elegant with me wearing just a plain t-shirt! LOL But thanks dear!

  8. This is exactly what I always do when I'm off to work minus the eyeshadow. Hence, neglecting my blog post on makeup. Gotta catch up on time!

    1. Ah, I know what you mean, I haven't been wearing much makeup lately too due to my pregnancy, I can't wait to update on more makeup looks soon!

  9. Wow! Quick yet very well put together.

  10. Great quick-make up!I love the eyeshadow!
    I used to have that same browpencil(lovely, korean brand, i forgot the name)but it tears off my browhairs :( I'm not using it anymore.
    My makeup for daily use are: Maybelline Foundation, The Body Shop Lip&Chick Tint as blush, Maybelline Mascara, Revlon Colorstay Lipgloss.What I like about them it stays the rest of the day, I dont have time to retouch so its pretty good to have quick makeups that will last long day!

    1. Ah The Body Shop Lip and Cheek Tint seems like a winner for girls on the go talaga! :) I agree with you, with our busy day /lives, it is difficult to stop for retouch! :D Thanks for sharing your daily makeup routine!


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