Morning people have become a rare species. It takes a good disposition and a good breakfast— including good coffee—to get one up and running. But unsurprisingly, all it really takes is a good night’s sleep. If you’re a reluctant morning person (i.e., an early riser against your will—blame the body clock) or just plain reluctant, we’ve come up with this little insta-R&R guideline to get you going.
Obviously, waking up pleasantly is a result of a comfortable slumber. We've always been told to start tucking in by 8 p.m., but who sleeps that early these days? With packed schedules and killer traffic to conquer, here's a more feasible approach to bedtime.
Ideally, 8 p.m.
Realistically, 9:30 to 10:30 p.m.
15 Minutes: Shower
A warm shower relaxes the body even for just 15 minutes or less; the cozy temp makes most drowsy. Couple with a fresh lather and a candle with a soothing scent.
DESERVING THYME Bath oil, P625, Beauty Bar, Power Plant
30 Minutes: Tucking In
Bring your candle from your shower to your bedside and up the ambience with a pillow spray that’s fresh, not cloying.
COMPAGNIE DE PROVINCE Home linen water, P525, Rustan’s
A symptom of bad sleep (or none at all) is equally bad skin. Target these telltale signs with these skin-savers. A detoxifying serum, like Estée Lauder’s Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Recovery Complex II (P5300, Rustan’s), that’s meant to be used as you doze off works because the time you have it on your skin is when your skin naturally releases toxins (that’s why you’re a little oily in the morning). Smearing it on before bedtime boosts skin repair. Meanwhile, a heavy-duty eye cream, such as La Prairie’s Cellular Swiss Ice Crystal Eye Cream (P9500, Rustan’s) makes sure you wake up without dark or puffy peepers, and keeps wrinkles at bay in the long run.
A Hundred Strokes
Remember that myth of brushing your hair 100 times before bed to achieve great hair? The benefits might not be fully proven, but one thing is for sure: It gives you a good scalp massage that’s extra comforting, especially if a sister or S.O. does it for you.
ACCA KAPPA Protection Brush, P1450, Rustan’s
Ideally, 5 a.m.
Realistically, 6 a.m.
5 Minutes: Snooze Button
An hour makes a whole lot of difference. While a 5 a.m. alarm might make you think you’re giving yourself more leeway to wake up, you’re just wasting precious time you could’ve spent soundly sleeping, especially since the sun has yet to rise at this hour. However, 6 a.m. is more realistic. Your circadian rhythm (a.k.a. body clock) recognizes sunlight as a natural wake-up call.
45 Minutes: Getting Ready
A good gulp of water quickly rehydrates the night’s fast (hence “breakfast”). Having breakfast gives you time to de-bloat before heading out.
A warm, steamy shower de-puffs all bloating caused by lying down, allergies, your breakfast, etc. And when all else fails, there’s always Benefit’s Puff Off (P1500, Greenbelt 5), which at least deflates your undereye baggage (which is what matters anyway).
While a warm shower reduces puffiness, a cold final rinse not only energizes the body, but calms skin and scalp, making sure they don’t dry and flake from hot shower temps (it happens!).
FIORI DI BACH Energizing Shower Gel, P525, Beauty Bar, Power Plant
DOVE energizing Beauty Bar, P48, Watsons
When all else fails, reduce the dullness and dark circles with a brightening serum, like Nars’ Skin Optimal Brightening Concentrate (P4250, Rustan’s).
*This article originally appeared in Preview Magazine's May 2015 issue.