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A Busy Mom’s Guide to Basic Beauty

It’s a wonder sometimes when you see influencer moms on Instagram. How is it possible that they can look so put together even if they just had a baby a few days ago? And yet here I am wondering when my next shower might be!

We moms know that the 10-step skin care routine or a full face of makeup just isn’t realistic for our lifestyle. And that’s okay. We don’t have to do what everyone’s doing, especially if the advice comes from someone who might have more free time on their hands than us. But taking care of ourselves shouldn’t stop even if we have more people to take care of. The more we need to make sure we are healthy and happy, because now there are people who truly depend on us!

Skin Care

Keep it simple. I live by the age-old advice of CTM-cleanse, tone, and moisturize. But I just add one simple step: sunscreen. I cleanse with a no-fuss cleanser, usually something mild or with a low pH. I no longer tone with alcohol-based toners or astringents. Instead, I use a moisturizing toner like Hello Gorgeous Brightening Facial Toner. And then I seal that with a basic moisturizer usually with anti-aging ingredients all the way down to my neck. You can try Grace Cosmetics Anti-Wrinkle Moisturizer or Fresh Lotus Youth Preserve Cream.

During the day, I wear tinted sunscreen especially when I step out of the house. Since I’m a work-at-home mom, there are days when I’m just home all day, going back and forth between child care, work, and house chores. But since I do get a lot of natural sunlight at my place, it’s also best to wear at least SPF 30 every day. Maybe that will be part of my resolutions for 2019! Try Bath Junkies Sun Kissed Sunblock Gel.


Gone are the days I could luxuriously spend 30 minutes to an hour perfecting the #lewkoftheday. I usually have to properly orchestrate my days if I have to put a full face of makeup on for special occasions (read: thank you, Netflix!). But for daily errands or meetings, I am usually left to completing my makeup on the passenger seat or the back of a Grab car. And my makeup is whatever is in my to-go kit inside my purse.

Here’s my basic face: eyebrows, lashes, blush, and lipstick. If I’ve had very little sleep the night before, I add peach-toned concealer for under eyes and I try to mask my tired skin with subtle highlighter.

When I can, I try to fill in my brows before riding the car so that it’s more likely to be clean and symmetrical. Of course there are also days when all I can do is just brush brow gel and hope I look cute. For that, many of my mom friends love the (what else?) Glossier Boy Brow. If you’re always on the go, use a pencil like L’Oreal Paris Brow Artist Expert so that you don’t need extra tools and can literally fill in your brows inside while you’re on the go AKA a moving vehicle.

Curl your lashes and apply two coats of the blackest mascara to look awake, alive, and ready to take on the day! Or at least, the next few hours. Try the L’Oreal Paris False Lash Butterfly Waterproof Black Mascara or my current favorite, L’Oreal Paris Voluminous Lash Paradise.

You can use one product on your cheeks and lips, it’s really up to you how you want to look. For a subtle flush and just enough color on your lips, dab the same lipstick on your cheeks and your lips. A top-billing professional makeup artist I know uses Maybelline Color Sensational Powder Matte Lipstick in Touch of Nude on her cheeks as a quick blush. You can also use a multi-purpose tint like Pink Sugar’s Sugar Tint Lip and Cheek Tint on both your cheeks and lips.

Quick tip: Pick a bright colored blush if you want to look fresh and less tired. Don’t shy away from those bright pinks like Physician’s Formula Murumuru Butter Blush in Rosy Pink.

For meetings or when you’re going to work, you might want to try liquid lipsticks so you won’t have to think about it after you apply. It stays all day, even after numerous cups of coffee plus meals. They don’t quit, pretty much like how our babies cry in the middle of the night. We suggest Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink Liquid Lipstick or L’Oreal Paris Infallible  Pro-Matte Liquid Lipstick.

Got a bit of extra time? Apply a liquid highlighter like the Hello Gorgeous Unicorn Tears. I used to hate applying makeup with my own fingers but now that I’ve become a mom of two, I find that it’s the easiest way to put on makeup while on the go. Plus I don’t have to worry about bringing different brushes. Smaller kit plus less time primping equals the perfect formula for moms!

Written By: 

Ronna Bonifacio


Ronna Capili Bonifacio is a writer, editor, and columnist covering beauty and lifestyle for over a decade. She now also tries to humorously write about motherhood as a mom of two. Apart from skin care and cosmetics, Ronna's true weakness are books and coffee. You can follow her on Instagram @ronnabonifacio and her blog:

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