Mother and Baby

Makeup that will make you look great on zero sleep

Section: Skin & Hair

If little sleep thieves are making you look worn out, here are 10 must-have beauty buys to make you look and feel alive through exhausting days.

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Get a glow on the nursery run: James Read Day Tan SPF 15 Face, £22,

Instead of an arsenal of products to apply in the morning, you just need this. This all-in-one tube gives skin the right balance of moisture, protects from UV rays and the tanner develops into a hint of skin-brightening colour that makes you look rested. We’ve even started skipping foundation and BB cream since using. 
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Soothe and treat tired eyes: Simple Soothing Eye Balm, £3.99,

Dry, sore, puffy and red – tired eyes don’t lie. The thin skin is the first place to show fatigue so an eye cream is a must. We love this budget buy for its soothing powers (even sensitive skins and eyes should try it) and because it doesn’t leave eyes puffy or sticky. But whichever eye cream you use, pop it in the fridge to boost the benefits. The cool cream will constrict blood vessels, de-puff and give a lifting effect to eyes. Who has time for teabags or cucumber slices these days?
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Conceal in half the time: Bourjois Healthy Mix Concealer, £7.99,

While brush-on concealer pens are fast to apply, the formula might not be dense enough for sleep-deprived dark circles, let alone spots or redness. Instead of using different concealers, switch to a formula that does everything. When concealing dark circles, avoid loading on too much product – it will just draw more attention to the area – and blend the product until it looks completely invisible on skin.
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Perk up your lashes: Rimmel Wonder’full Mascara, £7.99,

The pro secret to truly wide-awake eyes is to have a professional Lash Lift treatment every few months (go to for more information). Lashes are tinted super-dark and ‘lifted’ so you wake up with amazing lashes, more wide-awake eyes and less need for mascara (and no curling). The next best thing is this lifting mascara, which creates eye-opening, clump-free lashes in one or two strokes. 
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Line and brighten eyes: Kiko Cosmetics Colour Kajal in White, £4.20,

The classic make-up artists’ trick of lining the waterline of eyes with white pencil might not be new, but it really works. Just run the pencil inside your eyes to counteract redness and help bounce the light off. If white is too stark for you, try a flesh-coloured shade instead.  
Fakeawake: How to look great on zero sleep Expand Image Fakeawake: How to look great on zero sleep

Fake a daytime flush: Max Factor Miracle Touch Creamy Blusher, £6.99,

If you want to fake a rested face, cream blush is your friend. This one has a gel-like consistency so doesn’t sit in pores, or slide off your face by lunchtime. To really wake up your face, blend into the highest point of your cheeks with your fingers – the colour will melt into your skin and look like a natural flush of colour from within your skin.  
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Wake up your lips: This Works Energy Bank Tinted Lips, £15,

Ever stumbled from your bed after a night of ‘shh-pat’, to notice the colour of your lips has drained to an attractive shade of grey? This lovely natural balm has just enough colour to nourish and bring life back to your pout without looking like you have make-up on at all. 
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Prep skin before hitting the pillow: Super Facialist By Una Brennan, Vitamin C+ Skin Renew Cleansing Oil, £10.99,

If you do one thing for your skin, cleanse properly with a cleanser that suits your skin – it could be a balm, cream, cleansing oil, or a foam if you really want to get the job done quickly. If skin feels tight after cleansing, consider a cleanser with a richer consistency. We love this one as it moisturises as it cleanses. 
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Iron out imperfections overnight: Ole Henriksen Invigorating Night Treatment, £42,

Grabbing high-energy snacks and caffeine on the run, not sleeping or cleansing your skin properly can all affect your skin. When you need an overnight skin fix, this AHA-based, oil-free gel transforms your skin, even if you spend most of the night settling your little one. Apply to clean skin and by morning your skin will look healthier. 
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Oil up for plump and dewy skin: The Body Shop Vitamin E Overnight Serum-In-Oil, £13,

If you haven’t discovered the skin-changing powers of facial oil yet, it’s high time you did. Massage a couple of drops into skin at night (just one drop will do if you have oily skin), or if you want to give your night cream a boost (and save time applying different steps), add a couple of drops into your cream before massaging everything in. Even if your sleep is disrupted, your skin will look better than it did.  

  • Author: Lisa Durant Lisa Durant
  • Job Title: Beauty Editor

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