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Get Ready Faster in the Morning with These Simple Time-Saving Tips

Want to learn the art of getting ready and out the door in thirty minutes?
get ready faster time saving tips morning routine

Illustration: Alessandra Olanow

If you are a morning person, you probably get up early to exercise, make a healthy breakfast, read the news, and leisurely get ready for the day. (Do you even exist?) If you are not a morning person, you probably find yourself sleeping until the very last minute before you absolutely have to get up. When you finally do, you are met with the stress of needing to look decent but having minimal time to make it happen.

I am distinctly not a morning person—to the extent that I have trained myself to be able to wake up and get out the door for work in about twenty to thirty minutes. The thing is this: If you want more sleep time in the morning, you have to put in a little more prep time during the day. Here are some great tricks for streamlining your routine.

01. Set a timer to go off every five minutes.

get ready faster time saving tips morning routine

It’s hard to keep track of time when getting ready super fast. Sometimes we can get too caught up with making that cat eye work and then realize it’s time to go, but we haven’t even put on clothes yet. Keeping a timer that goes off every five minutes will let you know exactly where you are in your getting-ready routine and keep you on track.

02. Make a plan the night before.

get ready faster time saving tips morning routine

It’s always when we’re running late that we think we have nothing to wear. A simple strategy is to prepare your outfit the night before—that way you can plan an outfit that you actually want to wear rather than what you just grabbed off the floor at the last minute. A few things that keep me sane:

  • Create a few outfits that you know you love wearing to keep on hand for days when you are in a super rush.
  • Know when you have meetings or have to look a bit more polished, and prepare accordingly. Invest in clothes and accessories in neutral colors. Your frantic search for an outfit will be cut down drastically if you have a lot of options that already coordinate.
  • Stay on top of your laundry schedule. Finding clothes to wear in the morning is even harder when half of your clothes are in the hamper.
  • Pack your handbag (keys, wallet, phone, etc.) the night before to ensure that you don’t forget anything when you’re running out the door.

03. Tame your mane.

get ready faster time saving tips morning routine

Take a shower in the evening rather than in the morning. This seems like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how much time this saves in the morning. Put your damp hair up in a bun with some mousse or in loose braids to sleep in for perfect waves the next day.

If you haven’t showered the night before, grab a bottle of dry shampoo to get rid of some grease, and tie your hair in a topknot, or try these tips to rock second-day hair.

04. Beautify in just five minutes.

get ready faster time saving tips morning routine

Keep your beauty products organized and in the same place every day. Knowing where everything is will speed up your routine—no more searching high and low for your mascara. Edit your beauty bag by using just a few products that multitask, such as:

  • BB cushion compact that evens, conceals, protects, and moisturizes your skin. This multi-use product is a cream-to-powder formula, so you won’t have to follow up with powder.
  • Use lip and cheek stick on your cheeks and lips, and even dab a little on your eyes (the blush color will make your eyes look brighter).
  • Apply a creamy eyeshadow pencil to your eyelids all the way up to the sockets, and blend with your fingers.
  • Another layer of the pencil close to the lashes will replace your usual eyeliner. Follow up with a swipe of mascara.

Done and done!

05. Be ready with coffee and breakfast.

get ready faster time saving tips morning routine

Prepare your coffee machine the night before, so all you have to do is turn it on. You could even consider investing in a machine with a built-in automatic timer. Purchase disposable travel coffee cups, or have your travel mug clean so you can pour and run. And if you take cream and sugar, buy an all-in-one creamer so that you don’t waste time going back and forth between the fridge and cabinet to get sugar and milk. Pack your breakfast (and lunch, if you want) the night before. Try these healthy on-the-go breakfast ideas.

Sleeping in on weekday mornings is a luxury, but I’ll take every extra minute I can get. By sticking to a routine that I know maximizes every minute of my time, I trust that I’ll be out the door without feeling stressed and frazzled.