My Three Minute Makeup Routine
Laid Back 3 Minute Makeup Routine via

Sometime within the last five years I decided that makeup wasn't really a necessity for me. Well, in case you missed it, I had a baby about 5 months ago and now that nonessential stuff is kind of important. You know, if I want to actually look like I'm not half asleep all the time. 😅 

I've been perfecting this quick and easy "no makeup" look for a couple of years now - spending way too much money at Sephora, trying all the "must have" products I was introduced to by watching a lot of YouTube, and I finally landed with the best four step routine that makes me feel a little more human when I'm looking especially exhausted. It definitely helps that it can easily be done in the back of a moving car, too. Because. let's be real here, 90% of the time that's where I'm doing my makeup. 😉 

This is the perfect routine for every laid back gal - whether you're a busy mama, you woke up late and you're strapped for time, or you're the girl who would rather sleep in than spend the time getting ready, I've got you. Especially because I personally fall into all three of these categories! 🙈

Laid Back 3 Minute Makeup Routine via

step one


Concealer is my BFF. For real, when I'm looking totally exhausted concealer is the one thing I know that'll immediately brighten up my face. Plus it hides those super annoying dark under eye circles! 

I use the Bareskin Complete Coverage from BareMinerals in the color "Light", and it's by far my favorite concealer. I tried almost every concealer on the market before I stumbled upon this one, and it's a game changer. It goes on smooth, doesn't settle into my pores, and it's full coverage so I don't have to worry about layering anything under or over it.

This is the only "base" (if you can even call it that) I use on my face these days. If I'm going out somewhere fun or taking photos then I'll use the BareMinerals Complexion Rescue Tinted Hydrating Gel Cream to give my skin an extra glow, but I don't like using a lot on my face on a daily basis. 

application tips:

Step One / Take the applicator brush and draw triangles underneath your eyes starting at the inner corner of your eye, down to the corner of your nose, and back up to the outer corner of your eye. Fill this triangle in with product using the applicator brush. This will help cover any discoloration under your eyes, and will immediately brighten them up so you look less sleepy!

Step Two / Draw a line following the shape underneath your eyebrows with the applicator brush. This helps make less than tamed brows look cleaner, and helps brighten that area of your skin as well. 

Step Three / Take a damp makeup sponge (I use this Beauty Blender) and pat the product onto your skin. By patting the product onto your skin with the sponge you're applying it to sit on top of your skin vs smearing it which thins it out and doesn't allow for as much coverage. Since we're not using any sort of foundation or tinted moisturizer, you want the concealer to do all of the work for you! 

Step Four / Pat everything in with your fingers to make sure you didn't miss anything with your sponge.

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Laid Back 3 Minute Makeup Routine via



Hello, cheekbones! It's amazing how much just a little bit of bronzer can totally transform your entire face. It defines your cheekbones, and brings some of that color back into your face that we covered up with the concealer. 

I use the Tarte Amazonian Clay Matte Bronzer in the color Park Avenue Princess. I've struggled my way through finding this perfect bronzer between crazy orange tones to sparkles all over my face, and this is hands down the best one I've found. It stays put all day long, and can easily be used as a true bronzer on your cheekbones, as a neutral eyeshadow in a pinch, or you can use it as a contour shade for more definition. 

application tips 

Step One / Use a thick brush (I use the Tarte Bronze & Glow Contour Brush), and generously apply the product to your upper cheekbones. I'm super heavy handed when it comes to bronzer, and you're going to look a little crazy, but trust me! We'll tone it down in the next steps! 

Step Two / Use a thinner brush (I use the smaller side of my Tarte Bronze & Glow Contour Brush) to brush some of the product on the bridge of your nose. This will give you more of a true sunkissed look, and also acts as a contour for your nose. 

Step Three / Use a dry makeup sponge (like this Beauty Blender I mentioned before), and blend, blend, blend! You want to take the sponge from the inner part of your cheeks, and buff out any of the harsh lines of product in a sweeping motion. I also like to run the dry Beauty Blender on the bridge of my nose just to make sure that there are no obvious lines there either. 

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Laid Back 3 Minute Makeup Routine via

step three


Mascara is by far my favorite type of makeup. Like, if I had to choose only one product to use for the rest of my life it would be this mascara.

In a perfect world I would have lash extensions and could skip this step entirely, but fun fact of the day: I have the most sensitive eyes, EVER. Just thinking about putting falsies on, or simply watching someone else do their eye makeup, makes my eyes start watering immediately. So, what I'm trying to say here is that eyelash extensions would be my own personal form of torture. 😅

Anyways! I use the Tarte Amazonian Clay Smart Mascara, and it's the best I've found. I love Tarte because they don't use any harsh chemicals, and this mascara always leaves my lashes feeling softer. It has a thick wand, and doesn't clump at all! It lengthens + adds volume, but you definitely have to build it up with a few layers if you like bold-but-natural lashes like I do. 

application tips:

Step One / Apply product to your lashes. I like to start with my top lashes, and comb from my lash line up while moving the wand quickly side to side. 

Step Two / Repeat Step One until your lashes are at your desired length and thickness. 

Step Three / Apply a small amount of product on your bottom lashes. 

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Laid Back 3 Minute Makeup Routine via

step four


Lipstick is the one thing that can immediately make you look like you put in a lot more effort than you actually did, and y'all know I'm all about minimal effort when it comes to my style (and makeup routine)! No surprise here, but I'm recommending yet another product from Tarte. 😅 I swear this isn't sponsored, they just make the best stuff!

My best advice when it comes to lip color for this simple look is to find a "your lips but better" color. This for me is "Birthday Suit" in the Tarteist Creamy Matte Lip Paint. This stuff is the BOMB. Seriously - it dries fast, and stays on all day (and all night if you forget to take your makeup off 🙈). I skip liner most days, but when I do reach for one I use the the Sephora Collection Rouge Gel Lip Liner in "Rose Wine"

application tips: 

Step One / Exfoliate your lips to make sure you're starting with a smooth surface! I use this LUSH Lip Scrub which I love because you can just lick it off your lips when you're done! 🙈 Remember, people. I'm typically doing my makeup in the car so this is a necessity! OR, if you're normal and do your makeup in the house, you can use a toothbrush and just gently run it over your lips. 

Step Two / If you want to use a lip liner, this is the time to do it! Line your lips, and fully fill them in. Bonus points for coloring in the lines. 😉

Step Three / Apply your (liquid) lipstick of choice! I typically apply one layer, rub my lips together, and top it off with a second layer. Give them a couple of minutes to set and dry, and you're good to go! 

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So, what do you think? Easy enough, right? This is seriously the simplest routine that makes me feel like I have my life together even on the busiest of days. And for those of you who are inevitably wondering ... yes! This is truly a three minute look once you get it down. I timed it.  I'd love to know some of your favorite products? Share them in the comments so we can all help each other out!

Chelcey Tate is a photographer, blogger and graphic designer based in Louisville, KY.