THE ART OF CRACK-TTRACTIVENESS: How To Look and Feel Hot On No Sleep

Sleep is for babies! But looking good when you're strung out and exhausted is for everyone.

May 18, 2011 at 11:32am | Leave a comment

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SO. Guess what? This article -- "no sleep beauty" or whatever -- has been written a zillion times before. I'm not claiming the idea as anything groundbreaking or new.

But here's the thing: it's never been written by ME. Yeah, the ME above at some crazy party. The only photos I have of myself are at crazy parties.

I have skipped more nights' sleep than any beauty editor that has ever lived. I used to be something of a party girl, you see. Yes, I was the Ambassador of No-Sleep Beauty. The president of the Society for Looking Good While Secretly Hallucinating Rats Under Your Desk at Work. The editor-in-chief of 'Bright-Eyed + Quietly Puking In Your Own Mouth' magazine.

You get the idea.

Yes, I '"fooled" a lot of co-workers. Was it ... admirable behavior? Whatever! It was admirable how convincingly non-partied out I looked after being tortured in a warehouse by a bunch of UK dustheads for 5 straight hours prior! Besides, I was very honest with everyone when it was time to go to the mental hospital or the rehab or wherever. I was.

Okay, so... Here, my looking office-appropriate good on no sleep step-by-step how-to guide:

 

#1 SHOWER. AND WASH YOUR HAIR.

You will probably feel like death and not want to do this, but you must. The hair-washing bit is crucial for waking you and your skin the hell up; also, I don't know where you've been up all night not sleeping, but you probably smell like something. So just hop in there really quickly.

I like bar soap on these mornings for some reason -- either extra-minty like Bliss Mammoth Minty Scrub Soap, or something really classic and authentically clean-smelling, like Lever 2000. It's anti-bacterial -- excellent. I mean three nights ago this artist guy covered in, I think, meth scabs -- yeah, this artist we shall call Meth Scabs -- LICKED me. And I didn't yell at him or anything! I was too tired.

 

2) EXFOLIATE YOUR FACE IN THE SHOWER.

...because I'm about to make you put self-tanner on it. Yeah, you hate self-tanner, blah blah blah. Fine, skip it. Whatever, I'm telling you what works for me! But since you need to wash your face anyway, you might as well scrub it and brighten everything up. I am obsessed with Christine Chin Resurface Exfoliating Scrub. It's microdermabrasion-y and amazing; Christine Chin is the ill facialist with 11 fingers of whom I am terrified and whom I worship but obvs that is another story for another time, dudes.

3) BLOW-DRY THE FRONT OF YOUR HAIR.

Why bother BLOW-DRYING anything when you're so tired? Let me explain: Giving your hair some shape around your face  -- preferably maybe even covering part of your face, as in a deep side-part -- makes a huge difference. You look polished, first of all. I mean, vaguely.

But more crucially, you won't have your hair pulled back in a ponytail or bun, looks that only draw attention to your miserable blood-shot eyes and how goddamn death-y you look in the face.

So just do like four minutes with a round brush and get a little volume at your roots, too: I love this Redken Rooftul 06 Root Lifting Spray.

 

4) SLAP ON A BUNCH OF MOISTURIZING SKINCARE PRODUCTS.

Now is not the time to give a damn about what breaks you out or what gets greasy mid-day or blah blah blah. Just grab the most moisturizing stuff you own and slather it on your face. Eye gel! Hydrating serum! Night cream! WHATEVER; I don't care if you use SPF or anything. Just lube up your face.

Bonus points if there's a shimmer or glowifier in the skincare product -- I'm a big fan of The Body Shop's Vitamin E Illuminating Moisture Cream, which is infused with light-diffusing particles for a pink glow that makes you look healthier all over. Wait a few minutes to let it all sink in, and then we'll do makeup. 

6) IN THE MEANTIME, BRUSH YOUR TEETH AND USE MOUTHWASH.

Nothing makes you feel grosser after a night of no sleep and possibly loads and loads of excellent cocaine (not my vice, but no judgement!) than an incongruously bad-tasting mouth all day! It does not go with your now CLEAN-SMELLING body. Also, mint wakes you up.

I thus prescrible Listerine toothpaste and, accordingly, LISTERINE mouthwash. It is the devil's brew to be sure and no one enjoys it, but you must pay a price for your reckless hedonism. There are consequences for staying up all night! HORRIBLY INTENSE-TASTING consequences. 

7) LIBERALLY APPLY TWO UNDEREYE CONCEALERS.

Ohhhh, there is so much to conceal, yes. You look BAD. Start with under the eyes. I use a zillion different undereye concealers -- whatever I can find first, as is the custom of the makeup-overloaded beauty editor -- but on a no-sleep morning I will make an effort to use something extra-pigmented as a base.

Lately I've been into this stuff by It Cosmetics called Bye, Bye Undereye. As ever, I could do without the goofy name but I am industry-jaded. It's waterproof, so I can have a little teary no-sleep meltdown or five on the phone with Chase Bank or a guy I'm sleeping with or whomever, and it doesn't budge; plus it is AMAZING coverage-wise. You just need a tiny bit and it spreads out like crazy.

Then on top of that, I like to dab on (and I never use concealer brushes -- good God, who can deal? -- just my fingers) a more traditional undereye concealer wherever it's still shadow-y and Lohan-looking. You cannot go wrong with Make Up For Ever's 5 Camouflage Cream Palette in the picture here. ("Well, what if this reader is black?", I asked myself, as I am trying more often to do. I double-checked : this product comes in all shades. The one for white people is below. It's what I use!) (Shut UP, Cat. GOD.)

8) QUICKLY APPLY A MIXTURE OF LIQUID BRONZER + TINTED MOISTURIZER ALL OVER YOUR WASHED-OUT FACE.

This is when I start getting sloppy, because I'm rounding homeplate, makeup-wise. To finish off my face in 10 seconds, I mix a tiny blob a bit of Bobbi Brown All-Over Bronzing Gel SPF15 (it's oil-free and doesn't break me out; and it's a makeup product; not a self-tanner) with a blob of tinted moisturizer.

Right now I'm into Kiehl's Ultra Facial Tinted Moisturizer SPF 15 Sunscreen; It's very dewy -- and I slather the mixture all over my face, including eyelids and all that. The combined effect: I look a little tan and warmed up.

Sometimes I'll do cream blush, but all cream blush lasts like 45 minutes, so whatever. The bronzing gel suffices. You're supposed to use it "where the sun hits," but I always use it for an all-over color effect.

9) CURL YOUR LASHES EVEN THOUGH IT'S DEATH, I KNOW, AND USE A VIBRATING MASCARA IF YOU OWN ONE.

I hate my eyelash curlers and I hate curling my eyelashes!  But eyelash curling makes a big difference. It's so annoying. I used to have the MAC Full Lash Curler but I lost it. Or you know what, some bitch stole it from my bathroom! Weird girls were always coming over and taking my stuff when I had parties and things. My fault. Anyway, the MAC one was excellent. I officially endorse it.

Anyway, curl your lashes. And then -- I LOVE a vibrating mascara.it does a lot of curling work for you and totally open up your eyes -- that Bambi-lash effect. Let it pulse at the base of your lashes for a second and then sweep outwards laterally, towards your ear. My favorite Maybelline is getting discontinued, so go with my second favorite: Lancome OSCILLATION Vibrating Infinite Powermascara Water Resistant. Now say that three times fast! Oh, Lancome. You are just so French!

OH YEAH -- NO EYESHADOW OR EYELINER, BITCHES. And I always wear loads of both, as a rule, day or night. But not when I'm exhausted. It makes me look worse. FACT.

10) DO A STRONG RED LIP.

Whether poppy-red or rich, deep red, the color just makes most people look pretty, pulled-together, and brighter-in-the-face in general. I love red lipstick and you haters like my sister who don't ever wear it are missing out! No, wear what you want. Umm ... I like a ton of red lipsticks. Telling you the shades that look good on me is sort of dumb, because everyone looks good in different colors, but lemme rummage through a bag and find one I use a lot anyway. Uh, here, Tarte 24•7 Natural Lip Sheen SPF 15 in Monday. This is not sheer at all -- it's a real solid red, but it's also hydrating and balm-like.

OMIGOD, this article is f-ing LONG. But see, that's just because I talk too much. This whole routine -- assuming you shower relatively quickly, should not take more than half an hour. Also, I always shove a bunch of makeup in my purse to brighten up with all day (since you know you're just gonna keep looking worse and worse as the hours pass).

Ok, I've obviously said enough. Now share the products YOU love when you haven't gotten enough -- or any -- sleep. Go!