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Work Wednesday: Faking the Well-Rested Look

Late nights and early mornings are par for the course in many professional jobs, but you can’t show up to your job looking like you just pulled an all-nighter.  Looking fresh as a daisy (or as fresh as you can) is part of presenting yourself to your clients, constituents and employers as a person who has her job covered.  Here are some of my favorite tips for faking a good night’s sleep:

Dry Shampoo. Fifteen minutes of sleep is a precious luxury that can be yours if you know how to use dry shampoo.  One of the mistakes women make with dry shampoo is using it like hairspray; this is incorrect.  Instead, spray it directly on the roots, focusing areas near the face and crown.  Once you have it applied, brush it through the hair thoroughly.  Style in your favorite quick updo.

Conceal and Highlight. L’Oreal Age Rewind concealer is the best under-eye concealer ever invented.  I layer it under my Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder to brighten and illuminate.  Looking for an under-$20 equivalent?   Try Mally Setting Powder.

Mascara. If you’re goal is to minimize under-eye darkness, skip the mascara on your bottom lashes.  Apply it extra thick to the top lashes only.

Blush.  In addition to hiding the under-eye darkness away, you also need to brighten your whole face.  The easiest way to do this is by applying a bright pink blush to the apple of your cheeks.  I like Bobbi Brown blush in Pale Pink or Nectar.  If you need a drugstore product, try Sonia Kashuk blush in Flamingo or Flushed.

Clothing Choices.  When you’re not feeling your best, your first instinct might be to reach for a less-than stellar outfit.  Instead, wear your favorite outfit.  You’ll feel better about yourself and project confidence.  Also, if you’re feeling tired and blah, wearing bright colors can make you look more alive.  This bright pink blouse from Sugar Lips is a good choice, or this yellow sleeveless dress.

Other tips?  Hydrate, and no, drinking coffee doesn’t count.  Also, if your late night including alcohol, try Alka Seltzer Wake-Up Call.  I also recommend Emergen-C as an alternative to caffeine, I think it’s the B-vitamins.  Lastly, stay moving.  Sitting will make you tired, so schedule a few minutes every half-hour to get up and walk around, it always helps me.



  1. Marissa says:

    Hi Belle!

    Have you ever tried any of the tinted dry shampoos for brunettes, like Batiste? I have dark brown hair – if I overdo it on the regular stuff, I look like I’m wearing a powdered wig. However, I’m worried it might stain my clothes or sweat off during the day. Any suggestions?


    June 11, 2014/Reply
  2. BN says:

    this post is so timely! i have been running on fumes this week and will be employing some of these strategies. thanks!

    June 11, 2014/Reply
  3. Athena says:

    Love these tips! Especially the mascara for reducing under eye darkness.

    June 11, 2014/Reply
  4. DontBlameTheKids says:

    I agree with wearing your favorite outfit, but I would add that maybe stay clear of colors like yellow that tend to make sallow, tired skin look even worse.

    June 11, 2014/Reply
  5. Anna D says:

    Maybelline Age Rewind – Not L’Oreal. And I agree. I picked some up after you recommended it, and it’s amazing!

    June 11, 2014/Reply
  6. GingerR says:

    Ha – depending on whose Congressional office you work in a prescription for a cucumber eye cream to minimize puffiness might have been appropriate.

    June 11, 2014/Reply
  7. 101C says:

    Amen to dry shampoo…but the real trick is applying it the night before rather than waiting until the next morning.

    June 11, 2014/Reply
    • jen says:

      YES! I just learned this and you are absolutely correct.

      June 12, 2014/Reply
  8. Sam says:

    I love the Pssst dry shampoo and have found that if I let it sit while I get dressed/do my makeup, it absorbs more oil and leaves my hair looking more presentable. Brush when you’re done and you’re out the door!

    June 11, 2014/Reply
  9. e says:

    This is so timely…particularly in some offices & party organizations today…

    June 11, 2014/Reply
  10. Trace says:

    YES to dry shampoo! My absolute favorite is Klorane. I have black hair and the white powder just disappears! I read that it’s due to the rice starch which goes clear when it hits oil and that the cheaper alternative is to simply dust rice starch on as a dry shampoo but I’ve never tried. Oh but a tip on dry shampoo: use separate dedicated dry shampoo brush so your regular brush doesn’t get as gross with build-up. Or you can just wash your brushes frequently but for me, if I don’t have time to regularly wash my hair, then I definitely don’t have time to wash my brushes!

    PS – I just started reading your blog and I love it. Although I mostly wear jeans to the office so it’s aspirational.

    June 11, 2014/Reply
  11. AttiredAttorney says:

    My favorite dry shampoo is actually by Suave – their salon professionals line (with the yellow cap) is about $3 a bottle. I can only find it at Walmart or Target and I stockpile!

    Belle, in the linked post about easy hairstyles, one of the commenters asked about your hair routine. Would you be willing to share that? I’m particularly interested in your hot rollers. I’m pretty adept with the curling iron, but it would be such a huge time saver to switch to rollers. I’m just scared I’ll buy the wrong ones (bad size, don’t get hot enough, etc).

    June 11, 2014/Reply