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If you leave your house every morning with matching shoes, manicured nails, styled hair, and smiling with the light of a thousand suns, this post may not be very helpful to you. Also, kudos to having those skills! However, If you’re more likely to skip breakfast at home in order to have time to grab all the resources you’ll need for the day, and jump in the car (likely opting for fast-food breakfast during your commute), then this post is for you!

No time is better than the present to try out a new morning routine. Specifically, if it saves you tons of time and effort. To give you some perspective, allow me to share what my daily routine looked like as a teacher.

5:30 am

Alarm goes off. Curse the morning. Fantasize calling in sick. Remember infallible sense of duty. Also, nobody else can do my job. Also, I would miss my students. Curse the morning…

6:00 am

Shower finished. Look at wet hair. Contemplate doing something fancy with wet hair. Immediately put hair in ponytail. Success.

6:01 am

Look at face. Consider putting on makeup. Laugh at mirror and walk away.

6:30 am

En route to school. Stop for unhealthy energy/coffee drink. Caffeine is flooding my veins. Almost awake.

8:00 am

Students enter classroom. First class begins. I’m officially awake.

12:00 pm

Exhausted. Starving. Need food. Can’t. Make. Sentences.

2:50 pm

Last class of the day ends. Half of hair has escaped from elastic.

5:30 pm

Made it home. Looks like I survived the apocalypse.

You may think I’m exaggerating, but I can assure you that I went almost an entire year of teaching wearing my hair in a high bun every single day. Remember that stereotypical librarian with the high bun and glasses? I was that stereotype, in music teacher form.

Since then, I’ve learned how to look a little more put together without entirely abandoning my proclivity for low maintenance. If you’re a morning person, the following tips may not apply to you (also, please give me your secrets).

 

SHOWER AT NIGHT

Not only will this save you time in the morning, but it gives you a chance to calm your mind before bed. If you’re anything like me, it’s your brain that won’t shut off, causing late nights and dreadful mornings.

HAIR

Dry Shampoo

This is an amazing product, but it took me a long time to find a brand that didn’t:

  • leave the entire house reeking of a scent that was meant to smell fresh (it doesn’t).
  • actually do what it says without costing half a week’s paycheck.

I like this. You may need to experiment with brands before finding one that works for you, but when it does, it makes your life so much easier!

I’m no beauty expert (as proven by my hair story from above), but here’s how I use it:
  • Shake can like crazy
  • Section hair haphazardly and spray directly on the roots (don’t be stingy in this step)
  • Massage it into your scalp until you see no more traces of powder
  • Style as usual/put in a ponytail

 

MAKEUP

This step is not at all necessary. However, being a person that has had skin issues in the past, makeup has become a part of my daily routine. Plus, I think we can all relate to those days in which a student asks,”Miss, you look sick. Are you sick?”

“No honey, that’s how I look with no makeup and a lack of effort.”<–not really how I would respond, but you get the idea. So, here are the items that help me look a little more alive with a lot less effort.

Tinted Moisturizer with SPF

  • It’s three in one, and you can slap it on without worrying too much about blending. You don’t have time for that…
Blush or Bronzer

  • this stuff keeps my extra pale skin from looking as though I’ve just stepped out of the morgue. And again, it doesn’t take a whole lot of effort to swipe some of this on your cheeks. If you’re really in a hurry, dot some lipstick on your cheeks and rub it around. Hey, whatever works. Just try to avoid doing this in low-light conditions. The results could end up less than satisfactory. I speak from experience.

Tinted Lip Balm with SPF

  • this is another three in one that will keep you looking a little less dead.

CLOTHES

Lay Them Out the Night Before

  • I’m quite nearly six feet tall, and I easily reach that height with any pair of shoes (or socks) I put on. Clothes and I rarely get along. So, I can spare myself a few minutes each morning by getting my outfit ready at night. For me, this means choosing pants that fit, and a shirt that doesn’t require me to pull it down all day long. Comfort is key when you’re constantly folk dancing and jumping around to the steady beat.

Capsule Wardrobe

  • With a teacher’s budget and few clothing options, I participated in the whole capsule wardrobe phenomenon without even realizing it (and my morning self was always thankful). If you’ve never heard of a capsule wardrobe, you can check it out here and here. It will save your wallet along with your sanity.

SLEEP

I’m naturally night owl, but I learned that going to bed early meant a more restful sleep and a happier morning. However, as I mentioned earlier, my brain doesn’t like for me to sleep. So I’ve taken to using the Noisli app. With this app, you can choose different environmental sounds to create your own little dream track. There’s also an adjustable timer so that you can set the sounds to stop at anytime. Hooray for no permanent hearing damage!

 

A LITTLE SOMETHING

Treat yourself to a little something that makes you happy in the morning. Not only will it put you in a better mood (if that’s possible at five in the morning) but it will also give you something to look forward to before the teaching day begins. I would share with you the treat that made my mornings better, but it involves junk food, and I think I may end up being a really bad influence on you. So instead, let’s pretend that my little treat every morning was a celery stick. Delicious.

If you follow all of these tips, you can easily get ready in about 20 minutes or less. However, from what I hear, children can triple the time it takes you to get ready in the morning. And for that I can only say, good luck and may good fortune be with you!

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