Back To Work Beauty: 6 Ways To Feel Your Best At Your Desk

A little post-holiday beauty prep will make the transition back to work all the more seamless, writes Ashleigh Cometti

A few simple steps will have you feeling and looking your office-best. Photo / Byrdie

If, like the Viva team, you’ve spent the past three weeks enjoying the unadulterated bliss that is a Kiwi summer, no doubt your first day back in the office was always going to be testing. This year, beat the back-to-work blues with our tips to help you look and feel refreshed on returning to the office from your summer vacay.

Save time and product in the mornings by scheduling in pre-work beauty prep before returning to the office. For brows, a simple shape and tint will help you appear more together. If it’s longevity you’re after, consider henna — the dye permeates deeper into skin, offering a strong colour payoff that lasts up to twice as long as a standard brow tint (additional $17 to any brow service from A lash tint may suffice for those who subscribe to a low-maintenance look, otherwise add a lash lift to your treatment for extra oomph. Go easy on eyeshadow — soft taupe will help you appear more awake.

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Disguise three weeks of holiday imbibing by incorporating a primer into your morning routine. Promising everything from glowing, hydrated skin to creating a longwearing, mattified finish, primers are a vital step after applying sunscreen and before smoothing on foundation. Many primers promise the super power of light-bending — claiming to diffuse and soften light. Keep the rest of your office beauty look quite simple; CC cream will offer coverage without appearing too pasty, followed by some brightening blush on the apples of cheeks and a touch of shimmering highlight above your cheekbones and in the inner corners of your eyes.

From left: Ouai Clean Shampoo; M.A.C Versicolour Varnish Cream Lip Stain; Essie Care Grow Stronger Base Coat. Photos / Supplied

Fluorescent office lights draw attention to your biggest features, so ensure lips are properly prepped before lipstick is applied. The goal here is to enhance your features, not overshadow them; so choose warm tones like rose or coral as they’re the most flattering shades under the blue-green haze of fluorescent lights. Lightweight formulas in a cream, gloss or oil finish will prevent lips from appearing too dried-out in an air-conditioned office environment, too. Try the new M.A.C Versicolour Varnish Cream Lip Stain, $50.

Powerful, sexy scents have their proper place on date night — but not in the office. Instead, opt for light, fresh scents that are neutral and not offensive. Be mindful that your colleagues may not share the same scent preferences as you, so two light spritzes is enough to carry the scent without it becoming overbearing. If you’re in need of a little extra January brainpower, try power-boosting ingredients like rosemary; it’s said to improve mental performance, while vanilla can boost creativity. Try Bastide Rose Olivier EDT, $207, or The Herb Farm Sia Perfume, $26.

A few simple steps will have you feeling and looking your office-best. Photo / Byrdie

Move over dry shampoo, the next wave of hair innovation comes in the form of dry cleansers, which help to revive hair in between washes by removing excess product build up. Unlike their often chalky predecessors, dry cleansers aim to rebalance the scalp while absorbing excess oil at the roots and boosting volume through the ends, ready for hot-tool styling. Try Botaniq Cleansing Powder, $40, Ouai Clean Shampoo, $43, or Nioxin Instant Fullness Dry Cleanser, $42.

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Not all of us are blessed with long, strong talons. So, for those who have genetics to thank (or not) for their short, brittle nails, consider the range of strengthening treatments available to fortify nails and supercharge their growth. In the salon, toughening agents like IBX and Gel Bottle Inc.’s Builder In A Bottle ($55 from help fuse together the nail’s top layers to improve the nail plate integrity, leaving them primed and ready for colour application.

At home, consider paint-on treatments containing calcium and protein to prevent nails from breaking or splitting. Try Sally Hansen Nail Growth Miracle Salon Strengthening Treatment, $21, or Essie Care Grow Stronger Base Coat, $25. The key to office-appropriate manis is to keep nails neat and remove polish immediately when it begins to chip. When it comes to colour, soft pastel shades and neutrals are advised, unless your workplace dictates otherwise.

STOCKISTS: Bastide from Mecca Cosmetica or;;; Off & On four Auckland boutiques, Wellington and Christchurch; Nioxin from selected hair salons; Ouai from; Pop Nails Newmarket and City Works Depot; Sally Hansen and Essie from selected department stores and pharmacies;

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New Zealand Herald

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