Do What You Can the Night Before
You can shorten your bathroom time the most by removing the things you need to do in the morning to begin with. Not everything can be done before bed, but there are probably a few things in your routine that can be. In fact, you can knock out two of the most time consuming tasks by making them a part of your bedtime routine.
Shaving takes up a considerable amount of time for both men and women. If you know you’ll need to be clean shaven tomorrow, just do it tonight. Nobody will notice you shaved last night, ladies, so take care of it when you’re not in a rush. For some guys, their five o’clock shadow may already be visible by morning, but if you have lighter hair, the stubble will be less visible. It will look a lot better than not having time to shave at all.
You can also shower at night. There are a lot of perks to doing this: you can take as much time as you want (unless you’re in California), and you’ll have all the hot water to yourself, it can help you destress and fall asleep, and you’ve cut out the bathroom task that eats up the most time. Unless you’re sleeping in a sauna or tend to sweat a lot at night, you’re probably not going to stink by the morning. You probably only shower once every 24 hours anyway, so all you’re doing is shifting the time frame. A little deodorant refresh in the morning and you’re all set.
Go For Easy-to-Manage Hairstyles
Hair can be a major time eater, so the less you have to do with it the better. It may not be as fashionable as you’d like, but Kori Ellis at SheKnows suggests you consider getting a haircut that’s easy to manage. Shorter hair usually means less work for both men and women. If you ask your barber or hair stylist for something that’s easy to manage, they can usually recommend something that looks good.
No matter how you cut your hair, be sure to pick a simple hairstyle to do every day. Remember, you’re going to work, not the club. A ponytail, bun, or simple hair part can be enough to look professional and keep you from fooling around in front of the mirror for too long. If you’re a woman with long hair, Maria Del Russo at PopSugar suggests you can do most of the work the night before. Blow dry your hair before bed and twist it into a loose topknot that will maintain some volume. Let it out in the morning and your hair will fall naturally and be easy to manage. Whatever you go with, it should be simple, fast, and easy to repeat on the daily.
Use Multi-Purpose Makeup Products and Streamline Your Process
If makeup is a part of your routine, there are a couple things you can do to be quick and still look good (not that you need it). Stick to products that do multiple things, like a foundation, moisturizer, and SPF combination. For eye shadow, shading, and highlights, use an all-in-one pallet so you only have component to mess with.
For a quick and easy eye makeup, TheMakeupChair YouTube channel suggests using stencils to speed things up. You can buy stencils, but you can also make your own out of old business cards, playing cards, or anything else that’s fairly sturdy. If you’re in a rush in the morning, stick to the basic things: eyeliner, mascara, skin powder, and tinted lip gloss, for example. In fact, take note of what you used in a rushed morning and consider making that your standard routine if it looked good enough. You can always fix things later on during a break.
Organize Your Bathroom for Maximum Efficiency
No matter what you’re doing, organization is a key component to using time efficiently. You don’t want to waste time looking for things. Keep the tools you use in easy to reach places. Group up similar products so you always know where something is, and put away the things you don’t need daily. Make tools and products you forget to use visible so they’re easier to remember.
There are also a lot of products that can help you keep things organized. Liquid dispensers that can hold multiple products, a mirror that has a hook for your razor, or a style station for hair styling tools like the Polder Style Station we featured in our home organization gift guide. The less time you spend looking for things, the more time you have to do those things.
Photos and illustrations by Jim Cooke, Sean McGrath, Neil Turner, numb3r, Francis Bourgouin, Alan Gee, J B, Anne Worner, EvelynGiggles.